Business, Economy and Consumer Affairs

Indiana’s three ports had their second-best start to the year ever in 2017.

Burns Harbor, Mt. Vernon and Jeffersonville moved 19 percent more cargo in the first six months of this year than at the same time in 2016 – 5.7 million tons overall.

Almost two-thirds of that went through the southwest port of Mt. Vernon, in the form of bulk cargoes – things like coal, ethanol, fertilizer and minerals, which get transferred between railcars, river barges and trucks.

Sergio Russo / www.flickr.com/photos/xcbiker/1126553382

A Purdue researcher says technology may be the key to making the vineyard industry more ecologically -- and economically -- friendly.

Electrical and computer engineering professor David Ebert and his research team are working on software that calculates the best decisions for farmers based on information such as weather patterns, soil mapping and business trends.

Ebert says the focus is on wineries because winemaking is a more complex process than traditional farming.

The Indiana State Fair, starting Friday, provides a nearly month-long showcase for Hoosier agriculture. As that industry has changed, its role at the fair has stayed much the same.

Every year, Hoosiers get to try Indiana-grown wares of all kinds at the State Fair. They get to see 4-H participants show off their small flocks and exhibition animals.

What’s interesting, says Indiana State Poultry Association executive vice president Paul Brennan, is that it’s all evolved and modernized far less than the state’s major agriculture sectors themselves.

Scott Meyers / Flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/89022304

The Tippecanoe County Area Plan Commission appears poised to approve new rules governing where self-storage facilities may be built and what happens inside of them.

The APC will consider a proposal at a meeting this week which would bar such facilities from being built on land currently zoned for agricultural use.

County Commissioner Tom Murtaugh helped spearhead the ordinance and says it comes out of a permit denial for land next to a creek on the far eastern edge of Lafayette.

Half a dozen homeowners in rural Bartholomew County will get to pay less in property taxes because they live near concentrated animal feeding operations, or CAFOs.

The decision comes about a year after the families in the town of Hope appealed to the county about the impact of large hog farms on their home values.

After the county denied their requests in March, the neighbors appealed the case to the State Board of Tax Review.

A national fair housing group says Deutsche Bank and two other businesses are less likely to maintain foreclosed, bank-owned homes in majority-black areas of 30 cities, including Indianapolis and Gary.

A new version of a federal complaint, out this week, expands the investigation.

The National Fair Housing Alliance and 19 local organizations first filed a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development against Deutsche Bank in 2014.

Mayor Joe Hogsett says Indianapolis will administer a hiring and retention program that provides local companies a financial incentive to hire and retain displaced Carrier workers. (Photo by Drew Daudelin)

Hundreds of workers from Carrier, the manufacturing plant in Indianapolis, are losing their jobs as the company relocates some of its operations to Mexico.

Indiana Unemployment Rate Continues Steady Decline

Jul 21, 2017

Indiana’s June unemployment rate dropped to 3.0 percent, bolstered by private sector growth. That growth helped fuel a 0.2 percent decline in Indiana’s unemployment rate, the lowest rate since November 2000.

The private sector added more than 10,100 jobs last month, primarily due to growth in business, educational and health services.

Layoffs began Thursday at the Carrier factory in Indianapolis, where last year President-elect Donald Trump celebrated a deal to save jobs from moving to Mexico.

Indiana’s growing number of wineries and small vineyards want to make the Hoosier state synonymous with wine country.

Yet, a tricky climate limits what grapes they can grow in-state, and complex regulations limit where they can sell the resulting wines.

So these local wine destinations are finding other ways to make their marks.

At Two-Ee’s Winery near Huntington, the barrels and tanks in the production room are full of juice from grapes you’ve probably never heard of.

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