State Approves Drug Treatment Pilot Program at Starke County Jail

Starke County Justice CenterThe Starke County Jail will soon be home to the state’s first non-prison-based intensive drug treatment program. During a recent drug task force meeting, Gov. Mike Pence directed the Department of Correction to work with Starke County to adopt and pilot the Regional Therapeutic Communities (RTC) program. It gives local officials more treatment options to address drug addiction. Continue reading

FEMA Denies Disaster Assistance Request, Pence Orders Appeal

Indiana Department of Homeland SecurityGov. Mike Pence has directed the Indiana Department of Homeland Security to pursue an appeal after FEMA denied the state’s request for federal disaster assistance for 19 counties affected by flooding in June and July. That list of counties includes Pulaski, Marshall and Fulton. Assistance would have provided grants to government and nonprofit agencies. Continue reading

USDA Approves State’s Request for Secretarial Disaster Declaration

Crop lossFarmers throughout the state who suffered crop losses due to excessive rainfall can apply for low-interest emergency loans from the federal government. The U.S. Department of Agriculture yesterday approved a secretarial disaster declaration for 53 of Indiana’s 92 counties. Gov. Mike Pence, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellsperman and Indiana Farm Service Agency Executive Director Julia A. Wickard made the request in late July after farmers suffered significant crop damage and losses as a result of flooding and excessive rain that started May 1st. Continue reading

Pence Education Agenda Draws Mixed Reviews

North Judson-San Pierre Admin buildingGov. Mike Pence’s education agenda for the upcoming legislative session draws mixed reviews from a local school administrator who is looking to the General Assembly for meaningful reform. North Judson-San Pierre Superintendent Lynn Johnson agrees with some of the things the governor is suggesting, such as accountability that takes into account student growth.

The North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation has lost millions of dollars due over the past several years due to a combination of state funding cuts, declining enrollment and unfunded mandates. During a Tuesday night public forum, Johnson said the legislature needs to increase the amount of money it pays corporations per enrolled student. That’s also among the items on Pence’s agenda. Continue reading

Pence Orders Flags Flown at Half-Staff for Patriot Day

 Gov. Mike Pence has ordered flags across Indiana to be flown at half-staff today in observation of Patriot Day. They should be lowered at sunrise and remain at half-staff until sunset. Congress established the observation in 2001 in memory of the 2,977 people killed in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Individuals and businesses who fly flags are also directed to lower them in observation of the national day of mourning.


Pence and Walorski to Officially Open New U.S. 31


Gov. Mike Pence, U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski and other dignitaries will be on hand for tomorrow’s ribbon cutting and dedication of the new U.S. 31 between Plymouth and South Bend. The ceremony will take place at 2:30 p.m. EDT on State Road 4 at the new U.S. 31 interchange. The road will be closed in that area from 12:30 until 3:30 p.m. tomorrow afternoon. During that time traffic will not be able to enter or exit the new section of highway. Continue reading

Former Indiana Governor Dies

Gov. Otis R. Bowen
Gov. Otis R. Bowen

The man credited with overhauling Indiana’s tax system before serving as a member of President Reagan’s cabinet died Saturday in Donaldson. Former Gov. Otis Bowen was 95. The physician from Bremen was elected Marshall County Coroner in 1952 and later served in the General Assembly before being elected governor by a landslide in 1972. Continue reading

Governor Signs LaPorte County Property Tax Law

State Representative Tom Dermody
State Representative Tom Dermody

LaPorte County property owners have a new layer of protections and payment options thanks to a bill authored by Rep. Tom Dermody and signed into law by Gov. Mike Pence. The measure offers flexible repayment options and plans along with incentives to make early or on-time payments. It authorizes the Department of Local Government Finance to delay the payment of tax bills imposed for the March 1, 2012 or Jan. 15, 2013 assessment dates. The bill also creates a 2 percent discount for those who pay their property taxes on time. If payments are delinquent, the bill creates an additional 12 month period before a property is put up for auction. Continue reading