Starke County Democrats are Sworn into Office

Marvin McLaughlin and Kenny Wallace

The Starke County Democrat swearing in ceremony was held Thursday night at the Knox Community Center. Former Starke County Circuit Court Judge Marvin McLaughlin swore in the various county and township elected officials. Following the event, friends and family of the candidates enjoyed refreshments.

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Starke County Home Detention Participants Will be Closely Monitored this New Year’s Eve

Shawn Mattraw

New Year’s Eve is a dangerous time for many people, especially those who decide to party, drink a little too much, and attempt to drive home.

Another group that enters the danger zone are those individuals who are on home detention. Many of this group has had trouble with drugs and alcohol in the past, and holiday times can be tempting to violate the home monitoring rule that calls for no drinking.

Shawn Mattraw is the Case Manager/Senior Field Officer for the Starke County Community Corrections organization, and he says this is a difficult time for some of the participants.

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Stephanie McGovern Recovering after Car Accident in Cass County

Crews work to clear the scene of an accident that claimed the life of a Winamac teen. Photo provided by Kevin Lilly of the Pharos Tribune.

Stephanie McGovern, 16, of Winamac, who was involved in a car accident in Cass County on Monday, December 27th, had a successful jaw surgery and is out of ICU at a Fort Wayne hospital. Doctors have tended to broken ribs, a punctured lung and a punctured kidney that she suffered in the accident. She will soon continue her recovery at home. Stephanie’s parents are Mike and Cheryl McGovern.

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Jay and Katie Amidei Witness a Miracle as Their Son, Colton, Lives Through Rare Disease

Colton Amidei

It’s said that 80% of Americans believe in miracles. Do you? The Jay and Katie Amidei family, on Anns Ct. in Knox, believe in miracles. Here’s why:

Their son, Colton, was diagnosed with a rare disease after doctors found a large mass behind his eye. The disease, which is difficult to pronounce, was so rare that very few Americans had ever been diagnosed with it.

At this time last year, little Colton had gone through two surgeries to remove the tumor, the first surgery taking 12 1/2 hours. The second was performed after opening his head to remove the mass that had been missed the first “go round.”

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Electronic Devices Will No Longer be Accepted at Landfills after January 1st, 2011

Residents brought in several computers during the last Starke County Environment Days recycling event

Beginning January 1st, 2011, Indiana households, public schools, and small businesses will no longer be able to mix unwanted computer monitors, computers, televisions, printers, computer keyboards or mice, DVD players, video cassette recorders or fax machines with municipal waste that is intended for disposal at a landfill.

Effective July 1st, 2009, the Indiana Legislature enacted the Indiana Electronic Waste Program. The program’s purpose is to reduce the amount of electronic waste being sent to Indiana landfills and ensure that hazardous substances found in electronic waster are being managed in an appropriate and environmentally responsible manner. Electronics contain heavy metals, including lead, mercury, cadmium, and chromium that can be harmful if released into the environment.

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Police Officers to Patrol Indiana Roadways for Impaired Drivers during the New Year’s Day Holiday

Police officers will be out during the New Year’s Day holiday weekend and they will be on the lookout for drunk drivers. Jeremiah Patrick, Coordinator of the Starke County Traffic Safety Partnership, reports that officers from the organization will be out in force this weekend. The Starke County Traffic Safety Partnership includes officers from the Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Knox City Police Department and the North Judson Police Department. Officers from the LaPorte County Sheriff’s Department will also be out in force to help detect drunk drivers.

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Top 10 Stories of 2010; Story #1

Michael Drogosz

For the past two weeks, we have been scrolling down the top 10 stories of the year 2010. Here is the top story of 2010:

It was like a shootout from the wild-west. On February 15th, two Starke County officers tried to serve a felony warrant on Michael Drogosz at Bass Lake.

After he failed to come out, officers called for a SWAT team. Before those officers could arrive, officers Don Ferguson and Bill Dulin took fire from inside the residence. With bullets whizzing too close for comfort, the officers fired back in self defense.

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Tuesday Night Men’s League 12/28/10

Tuesday Night Men’s League 12/28/10
Team Standings:
1. Quarter’s 86.0-26.0
2. Konrad Cabinets 69.0-43.0
3. 1st Choice Pawn 64.0-48.0
4. Marks Body Shop 59.0-53.0
5. Sandbar 58.0-54.0
6. Hensleys 57.0-55.0
7. WKVI 56.0-56.0
8. Bowlaway Lanes 50.0-62.0
9. Half Track 46.0-66.0
10. Fishers 45.0-67.0
11. Simonis 42.0-70.0
12. Time Out 40.0-72.0

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Minor Earthquake Hits Central Indiana

An earthquake about five miles below the ground hit north central Indiana shortly before sunrise Thursday morning.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported a 3.8 magnitude earthquake centered five miles southeast of Greentown, Indiana. According to published reports, the Indiana Geological Survey had no records of an earthquake this size in Central Indiana ever.

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State Senator Ed Charbonneau Discusses Criminal Sentencing Procedures

State Senator Ed Charbonneau

Editors note: Recently the Pew Center on the States and the Council of State Government Justice Center released a report on Indiana’s criminal sentencing procedures. WKVI’s Ted Hayes had an opportunity to interview the ranking member of the Senate’s Appropriation Committee this week, and what follows are Fifth District Senator Ed Charbonneau thoughts on the subject:

“One of the challenges of my position is being responsible on the senate side for the school funding formula. I’ve been sitting in on all budget committee hearings recently. These meetings give a preliminary view of what the recommendations, or requests are going to be for the next budget cycle. The Department of Corrections was one of the departments that came to those meetings. Some pretty stunning numbers came from those presenting the DOC’s needs.”

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News from the Knox City Council

Knox City Council #2
Back Row: Mayor Rick Chambers, Ed Blue, Clerk-Treasurer Jeff Houston, Greg Matt and Attorney David Matsey. Front Row: Linda Berndt, Jeff Berg and Ron Parker

The Knox City Council learned that the City of Knox received a storm water infrastructure project grant worth $837,095. The Council will be providing a 20% match of $166,000 toward this project.

Clerk-Treasurer, Jeff Houston, announced that new tables and chairs have been ordered for the Knox Community Center. The dance floor was repaired and the carpets cleaned. The Council plans to review procedures for the Community Center in the near future.

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Starke County Commissioners Discuss Snow Days and Pay for County Employees

Starke County Commissioners ( L to R ) Kathy Norem, Dan Bridegroom, Jennifer Davis

On December 13th, Starke County had a level one snow emergency, prompting the County Commissioners to close the Courthouse. That brought up the question of “should employees be paid when the courthouse is closed?”

It was noted that no policy is in place to address this question. At the last Commissioners meeting, it was decided to pay the employees for that day, but in the future, “snow days” must be used as a vacation day, or a non-paid day. Sick days cannot be used for this type of situation.

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Right to Work Legislation Bills Filed in the Indiana House

Indiana Statehouse

With sizeable majorities in both Houses, will State Republicans push for legislation that would prevent workers from being required to pay union dues? House Labor Committee Chairman, Doug Gutwein (R-Francesville), has indicated that he personally likes the idea, but would not predict whether it will be debated this session. Bills have already been filed in the House on Right to Work legislation.

Governor Mitch Daniels, though, is not too excited to promote the legislation, wanting the legislators to concentrate on school, local government, and criminal justice reform.

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