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Lee Coursey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/leeco/

A debate over a specific way to generate transportation funding dollars resurfaced during the third meeting of the state roads task on Thursday.

The discussion focused on funding sources. And an idea promoted by a Purdue expert testifying before the panel provoked debate among its members: specifically, the value of vehicle miles traveled, or VMT, fees.

In a VMT system, people pay for how many miles they drive.

Republican Sen. Brandt Hershman, (R-Buck Creek), says he has issues with using that type of fee to pay for roads.

Annie Ropeik / Indiana Public Broadcasting

 

A new bill in Congress would fast-track new affordable housing development in East Chicago.

The bill, from U.S. Rep. Todd Young (R-Ind.), aims to help more than 300 families who have to move out of the city's West Calumet Housing Complex in the next couple of months.

Indiana lawmakers are exploring changes to the way money is dispersed from the state’s Military Family Relief Fund.

Debate in a study committee hearing Monday centered, in part, on whether some veterans can be “trusted” with the money.

The Military Family Relief Fund helps combat veterans and their immediate families who are struggling financially. The fund subsidizes food, housing, utility, transportation and medical bills.

Study Gives Indiana Poor Grade For Gender Wage Gap

Sep 26, 2016
Keith Cooper / https://www.flickr.com/photos/cooperweb/8363160192

A new study ranks Indiana near the bottom  when it comes to gender pay equality. 

An American Association of University Women study finds Indiana women on average earn only about three-quarters of what their male counterparts do.

The study cites weak state laws as part of the reason Indiana ranks 40th out of the 50 states.

Indiana Institute for Working Families policy analyst Erin Macey says a Cornell University study showed women are often penalized just for being mothers.

Keith Cooper / https://www.flickr.com/photos/cooperweb/8363160192

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller joined a federal complaint Tuesday challenging new rules concerning overtime pay.

Under the final version of the rules, unveiled in May, salaried employees making less than $47,476 a year will earn time-and-a-half for working overtime.

It’s twice the old threshold, and some small businesses have expressed concern about being able to make the switch.

The complaint, which includes Indiana and 20 other states, urges a federal court to block the new rules before they take effect on Dec. 1st.

Noah Coffey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/noahwesley/

After a number of high profile teacher sexual misconduct cases and a low ranking on a national “teacher conduct” scorecard -- state lawmakers formed a committee to recommend a plan of ways to protect Indiana children from sexual predators.

Now, the committee has a set  recommendations it hopes will become law.

Lawmakers say tougher measures could protect Indiana children from predatory school employees.

Under new recommendations, educators convicted of certain felonies would automatically lose their licenses.

Lynn Friedman / https://www.flickr.com/photos/lynnfriedman/18263113926

Indiana’s unemployment rate declined in August for the fourth consecutive month, and is now at its lowest level in nine months.

The unemployment rate last month fell to 4.5 percent.

That marks a decline of more than half-a-percent in just four months.

The state’s private sector added 5,600 jobs last month, the fifth consecutive month of private sector job growth.

The increase was led by a surge in professional and business service jobs, while the leisure and hospitality sector also showed strong gains.

Courtesy Governor Mike Pence

A panel of federal judges heard arguments Wednesday on a case challenging Governor Mike Pence’s attempt to withhold funds from programs helping Syrian refugees relocate to Indiana.

American Civil Liberties Union lawyers say they’re confident the law won’t stand up to scrutiny.

Last November Governor Pence suspended state funding to organizations such as Exodus Refugee Immigration, in a move he said was to protect Hoosiers from foreign-born terrorists.

Sarah Fentem / WBAA

 At a Purdue-hosted forum Monday night, Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson spoke to hundreds of questioning students who wanted to know what it could mean to have a Libertarian president.

Johnson focused many of his remarks on giving power to the states instead of the federal government.

The former Republican governor of New Mexico says he pushed for school choice and voucher systems in his state. If elected president, he says he’d eradicate what he calls the Department of Education’s way of solving problems.  

Pictures of Money / https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictures-of-money/

Indiana’s fiscal year is off to a slow start, with its first two months coming in below expectations.

August tax collections came in more than $25 million less than expected – following a July return of more than $7 million below projections.

That leaves the state already 1.5-percent off the mark through the first two months of the new fiscal year.

Corporate taxes fared well in August, more than 40-percent better than expected.

But individual income taxes scuffled after a strong July and sales taxes performed poorly again, more than $20 million off the mark.

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