General News

Mike Mozart / www.flickr.com/photos/jeepersmedia/14319906668/

Hoosiers can expect to pay 20- to 30-cents less per gallon of gas when they hit the road this Memorial Day weekend.

Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy.Com senior petroleum analyst, says the price of fuel in Indiana, and across the country, has hit a ten-year low.

“Last year on Memorial Day, the statewide average was about $2.75 a gallon,” he says. “But much of the state really holding right around the low-to-mid $2 a gallon range.”

He says prices will be in the $2 per gallon range for those who travel outside of Indiana.

Nicolas Huk / https://www.flickr.com/photos/128359034@N07/

Indiana’s largest cities and towns—especially around Indianapolis—continue to see a surge in population. A new study of 2015 census data from the Indiana Business Research Center at the Indiana University Kelley School of Business say Indy-area communities dominate a list of the state’s fastest-growing places.

Matt Kinghorn, demographer at the IBRC, says that’s nothing new.

Jim Grey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/mobilene/

Indiana’s Commission on Improving the Status of Children wants to refocus its efforts on improving child welfare by developing a new strategic plan. 

The Commission on Improving the Status of Children was formed by the General Assembly in 2013 and received a progress report from a national child welfare consultant group.

Consultant Holly Merz says the commission has made great strides in relationship-building in a child welfare system that’s spread in some cases across a dozen different agencies.

First Quarter Homeownership Rates Fall In Indiana, U.S.

May 10, 2016
Barbara Brosher / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Home ownership rates are among some of the lowest in decades across the country and in Indiana.

In the first quarter of 2016, the number of American homeowners fell 0.2-percent from the same time last year.

It’s part of an overall downward trend in homeownership over the past ten years.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, homeownership is down nearly 6-percent in Indiana compared to 2005.

Director of the Indiana Business Research Center Jerry Conover says there was a peak in homeownership right before the great recession.

First Safe Haven Baby Drop-off Boxes Installed In Indiana

Apr 27, 2016
Safe Haven Baby Boxes / safehavenbabyboxes.com

The first baby boxes in the country are being unveiled at two northern Indiana fire stations this week. The boxes act as incubators to protect babies abandoned under the state’s Safe Haven law, passed in 2015.

Indiana law allows parents of unwanted newborns to give up their babies at fire stations, police departments and hospitals. The Safe Haven Baby Boxes aim to keep those parents anonymous and their baby safe.

Irene Grassi / https://www.flickr.com/photos/sun_sand_sea

The USDA is offering up nearly $12 million in funding to increase internet access in rural communities.

The annual federal grant program has funded one major Indiana broadband project in the past -- an $800,000 community computer center for Harrison County, near Kentucky.

Phil Lehmkuhler is the USDA's rural director in Indiana. He says it's hard to do business these days without the web -- more goods and services go online every year, putting disconnected towns at an increasing disadvantage.

Senators To Government Publishing Office: It's 'Hoosiers'

Apr 12, 2016
Noah Coffey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/noahwesley/

Indiana’s U.S. Senators have sent a bipartisan letter to the federal office responsible for printing government documents, asking that the word “Hoosiers” be the official word to describe Indiana natives.

According to a style manual from the U.S. Government Publishing Office, those who live in Indiana are “Indianans.”  That office produces and prints documents for all three branches of the federal government.

Senators Dan Coats (R-IN) and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) sent a letter Tuesday, urging the use of “Hoosiers” instead. 

Carissa Rogers / https://www.flickr.com/photos/goodncrazy/5531939741

A federal court says an Indiana law banning robocalls can bar political calls without violating the First Amendment. 

Indiana law bars anyone from making autodialed phone calls with just three exceptions – schools sending messages to parents, students and employees, employers calling workers about their schedule, or callers that have an existing relationship with a subscriber. 

kov-A-c / https://www.flickr.com/photos/yovac/14427821648

Freezing temperatures this week are concerning Purdue University agricultural specialists.

Peaches, grapes and wheat are especially vulnerable right now. Greg Bossaer, assistant program leader for agriculture and natural resources at Purdue Extension, says it’s possible that prolonged freezing temperatures could decrease the supply or increase the price of affected crops.

“The jury’s still out here, and it’s probably going to depend on these next few evenings,” he says.

Darren Bertram / https://www.flickr.com/photos/moncho71/

Two teachers from two different Indiana schools have died this week while away on spring break trips. They were both chaperones on their trips out of the country.

Kokomo High School teacher Melanie Peoples died this week while in China.

According to the school, Peoples died of natural causes in her sleep. She was chaperoning students on a spring break trip.

Peoples was an English teacher and had been with the school for four years. Before coming to Kokomo High School she was a teacher at Maple Crest Middle School for 14 years.

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