Indiana

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Indiana’s race for U.S. Senate between Republican Todd Young and Democrat Evan Bayh is going negative, with no end in sight.

Almost immediately after Evan Bayh entered the race a few weeks ago, the Young campaign and its national Republican backers began their attacks, focusing on whether Bayh lives in Indiana.

The negativity permeates the two candidates’ personal interactions.  Here’s Bayh and Young greeting each other at the State Fair last week.

Bayh: “Hey Todd, how are you?”

Young: “Did you just fly in this morning?”

Bob Nielsen / Purdue University

They say that Indiana corn should be knee-high by the fourth of July.

With changes in how we farm, that isn't really true these days -- but agronomists do say the crop is on track for a strong 2016 harvest.

The self-titled "corn guy" of Purdue University, Bob Nielsen, says the Cass County cornfield where he was scouting a few days before the holiday looked green and healthy -- though:

"It's not knee-high by the fourth of July -- it's head-high," he says.

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The number of unemployed Hoosiers decreased last month, the first time Indiana’s jobless rate has declined since September of last year.

The unemployment rate went down two-tenths of a percent in May, falling to five percent.

That’s the largest one-month decline in more than a year. 

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The federally-funded Farmers Market Nutrition Program is getting a boost this year in Indiana.

The program, in partnership with the Women, Infants and Children program, provides lower-income pregnant women, moms and children access to healthy foods sold at farmers markets and roadside stands. 

Indiana has added markets in three additional counties, as well as expanded the program in existing counties.

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The Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs wants to promote the benefits of hiring veterans, and teach employers to accommodate some of their unique needs. 

A summit on Wednesday is one in a chain of efforts aimed to decrease veteran unemployment.

In 2014, the unemployment rate among post-9-11 veterans was 10 percent, nearly double the state’s overall rate. 

Yet by the end of 2015, the rate among newer veterans dropped to just 1.4 percent. 

Deanna Pugh is the director of employment and education for the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs.

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One thing became clear during the first meeting of the panel tasked with rewriting the ISTEP, Indiana’s standardized school assessment test.

Change will come slowly because there’s so much work to do.

And one legislator says the state may need to bring back the ISTEP to allow enough time to develop a good alternative.

The 23-member committee created by the 2016 Indiana General Assembly met for the first time on Tuesday.

The group has a December 1, 2016 deadline to evaluate different tests and recommend a replacement test.  

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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.

Donnelly Proposes Penalties For Companies That Outsource Jobs

May 20, 2016
Annie Ropeik

Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly is introducing policies that he says will deter American companies from outsourcing jobs to foreign countries. 

The recommendations come as Indiana-headquartered Carrier Corp. and United Technologies Electronic Controls are moving more than 2,000 jobs from Indiana to Mexico.

Donnelly hasn’t written a bill to dissuade companies from moving jobs overseas. 

Instead, he’s written policy recommendations that he sent to the Senate Finance Committee.  He says it’s faster.

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The 22-member panel tasked with developing a new standardized assessment test to replace the ISTEP will begin meeting soon.

Lawmakers mandated the ISTEP rewrite during the 2016 legislative session.

The panel has the ability to change the format of the test, the school accountability measures, and how often and when it can be administered.

   Republican Congressman Todd Young cruised to a double-digit victory Tuesday, finishing off a bitter and sometimes divisive Senate primary race against U.S. Representative Marlin Stutzman.

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Brandon Smith reports on how the night unfolded for the two campaigns, and whether Republicans can unite behind the winner.

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