Insurance

FAMILY BUSINESS: Warning: Inevitable conflicts ahead for siblingsRestricted Content

April 30, 2007
Eric Manterfield
If you have at least one child working with you in the family business, it is virtually inevitable that conflicts among your children will arise at your incapacity or death. You may have a "business child" and a "non-business child." So long as you are alive and well, you can resolve any conflicts between them. But what happens when you become incapacitated or die? Sibling rivalry can not only destroy what you have worked so hard to build, but it...
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Wright Development LLC: Providing the missing piece Development company aims to recreate neighborhoodsRestricted Content

April 23, 2007
Marc D.
Driving around the Holy Cross area just east of Lockerbie, the CEO of Wright Development LLC points out several properties her company has bought and refurbished-starting with 1209 and 1210 E. Vermont St.-as well as the many rehabs in the works. "Our goal is to re-create neighborhoods and make them viable, thriving, desirable places to live," she said. "That's usually left to the city, the not-for-profits and the [community development corporations]. We feel like there's been a component missing." The...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: The Great Society meets fiscal realityRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
Patrick Barkey
Someone wise in matters of politics once said programs for the poor are poor programs. It remains true today-initiatives aimed at helping the most vulnerable in our society, be they privately or publicly funded, seem to be perpetually starved for funds. And so the genius of those who created the Social Security system-originally aimed at older Americans whose assets were devastated by the Great Depression in 1935-was to make the program available to all, regardless of income. In a few...
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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Negotiating blitz to bring legislative session to closeRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
Ed Feigenbaum
For those who thought this had been a fairly boring session of the Indiana General Assembly to date, wake up from your deep slumber. Nap time is over. We've reached the point where the lowhanging fruit has been picked by lawmakers and passed on to the governor, and the heavy lifting remains. Lawmakers embark upon the conference committee stage of deliberations. To understand conference committee time, forget all your conceptions to date about the session and begin with a clean...
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Competition drives hospital chief: Lennen labors to grow hospital, county to stay ahead of Indianapolis peersRestricted Content

April 16, 2007
J.K. Wall
Competitive. That's how Shelbyville community leaders describe Tony Lennen. Indeed. Any CEO of the city's Major Hospital needs to be. Shelby County residents can, in just 20 to 45 minutes, drive up Interstate 74 or Interstate 65 to any of Indianapolis' large hospitals, many of which boast massive marketing budgets and stables of specialists. But in nearly 14 years at the helm of Major Hospital, Lennen has found creative ways to boost profits, enhance technology, woo specialists and even-through aggressive...
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Hospital accepts loss for improving heart attack care:Restricted Content

April 9, 2007
Tracy Donhardt
St. Francis Hospital officials have found that improving care and cutting costs to treat heart attack patients comes at an unexpected price. A new program cut the hospital's time to treat patients and reduced the size of the heart attack-saving $9,400 per admission. But reimbursement by insurance companies dropped $9,715, resulting in the hospital losing $315 per admission. "The pay for quality and pay for performance issue under the current reimbursement structure is not designed to reward quality of care,"...
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Local international film fest growing by leaps and bounds: But still small potatoes compared with HeartlandRestricted Content

April 9, 2007
Jennifer Whitson
The screen comes alive with the tale of a woman trying to track down her on-thelam husband even as she deals with her imprisoned brother and a grown son addicted to porn. The next night features a violence-packed trilogy of films about warring Asian gangs. Toto, we're not at the Heartland Film Festival anymore. No, the 191 films set to be screened at the Indianapolis International Film Festival starting this month are grittier-helping it build a reputation for attracting a...
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NOTIONS: In God We Trust; all others risk their civil libertiesRestricted Content

April 9, 2007
Bruce Hetrick
The other night, while my wife Cherí attended class, I ate out with a copy of NUVO to keep me company. In the "letters" section, an atheist complained about Indiana's new "In God We Trust" license plate. He said government shouldn't promote religion, especially via a plate that requires no additional contribution, as do other "specialty" plates. When I got home, I found an e-mail from a friend wondering why these plates are so popular and whether taxpayers should bear...
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Wellness gains full-time presence: Hospitals try to bulk up health promotion at employers' officesRestricted Content

April 9, 2007
J.K. Wall
Wellness is good for business. At least that's what Community Health Network and other Indianapolisarea hospitals are finding as they ramp up the wellness programs they offer onsite to area employers. Community has grown its health promotion division an average of 30 percent in each of the last three years. And this year, it had two corporate clients ask to have wellness staff at their offices daily. Community parks a wellness coordinator five days a week at Celadon Group Inc.,...
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Reform push casts cloud over booming Sallie Mae:Restricted Content

April 2, 2007
Tracy Donhardt
Shares of Sallie Mae, one of Hamilton County's biggest employers, have fallen more than 25 percent over the past year as investors fret that Congress will overhaul the student-loan industry, halving interest rates and bringing the company's boom times to an end. Momentum for an industry overhaul has been building since Democrats gained control of Congress in November. Concerns peaked in February when President Bush submitted a budget proposal that included cuts in industry subsidies. Changes under consideration could whack...
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Consumers drive away from HMOs: Despite declines, most plans in Indiana still have healthy reserves and profitsRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
J.K. Wall
Most central Indiana HMOs lost customers again in 2006, with consumerdriven health care plans inflicting the latest cut. Eight out of 10 major health maintenance organizations lost members, some for a third straight year. The declines ranged from 4 percent to 48 percent, according to their annual reports filed with the Indiana Department of Insurance. Most HMOs are in no danger of going out of business. Many posted increased profit in 2006, and most have healthy cash reserves. But HMOs...
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PROFILE: UNIQUE WINDOW & DOOR: Hanging a business on happy customers Owner aims to improve home-improvement reputationRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Tammy Lieber
PROFILE UNIQUE WINDOW & DOOR Hanging a business on happy customers Owner aims to improve home-improvement reputation In an industry often lambasted for unethical practices, Unique Window & Door President Robert Dillon has tried to carve a niche in the local home-improvement market-combining aggressive marketing with a focus on customer and employee satisfaction. It seems to be making strides on both counts. Revenue has steadily increased over the 13 years Dillon has owned the company, and Unique is a four-time...
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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Desperate for cash, lawmakers embrace gamblingRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Ed Feigenbaum
We recently told you how revenue growth was lagging the December fiscal forecast. One prominent Republican senator tells his constituents that his colleagues are now planning for a growth rate in this fiscal year of only 2.5 percent, not the 4.2 percent to 4.5 percent they had planned on at the beginning of the session. While lawmakers will not have a new fiscal forecast for the biennium until the middle of April, they are clearly girding for a new fiscal...
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Concrete price-fixing case might not be wrapped up: Undisclosed state investigation delaying civil lawsuitRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
The U.S. Department of Justice's highprofile, three-year investigation into price fixing in Indiana's concrete industry resulted in one of the largest antitrust fines in history: $29.2 million against Greenfield-based Irving Materials Inc. The investigation might not be over yet. The DOJ seemed to conclude its Indianapolis inquiry last month, finally closing the criminal case. But a recent filing in a pending civil suit against IMI and its four former top executives hints the probe is continuing elsewhere. This time, IMI...
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Ratio building go-to reputation: Convention Center expansion latest notch in firm's beltRestricted Content

March 26, 2007
Scott Olson
As the Final Four approaches, it seems fitting to relive in basketball terms how Ratio Architects Inc. came off the bench in dramatic fashion to save a high-profile downtown project after the star had fouled out. The Indianapolis-based architectural firm played that role in 2004 after sketches from the original out-of-town architect designing the downtown headquarters of Simon Property Group Inc. failed to impress corporate executives. Ratio had one week to deliver, and did. But while the firm's portfolio is...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Trustees shouldn't forget regular insurance auditsRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Mark Leyden
Trustees, picture this: You are at the table with the beneficiary children of one of your most successful clients. You are reviewing the estate of their deceased parent. You have the unpleasant task of explaining that the insurance policy that was purchased 15 years ago had lapsed several years prior to Dad's passing. Result: nothing to lighten the tax bill. Most trustees do not adequately manage the life insurance policy assets held inside the trust. According to a 2003 survey...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Here's another tax break you may have overlookedRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Paul Coan
Financial advisors counsel clients on income, estate and gift taxes among other things. But they often neglect residential property taxes. That could well be a mistake. Property taxes are a significant cost of owning real estate - typically 1 percent to 1.5 percent of market value. So, they must be considered in making financial decisions. They can also be a significant cash-flow consideration for someone in retirement who has a lot of illiquid wealth-not just for your primary residence, but...
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Commentary Noblesville gets traction under mayor:Restricted Content

March 19, 2007
Chris Katterjohn
When it comes to the battle of the 'burbs-at least those north of Indianapolis-Carmel seems to get all the glory. Not that it's undeserved, considering the progress and growth that have taken place under Mayor Jim Brainard. But lest you haven't noticed, Carmel's rival to the northeast-Noblesville-has fired up its afterburners in the last few years and is making major strides on the development front. Some of the credit should go to that city's first-term mayor, John Ditslear, who was...
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Banks quick to embrace remote checking: Customers get on board as more institutions allow checks to be scanned, transmitted, deposited electronicallyRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Katie Maurer
ATMs are still convenient, but not much of a novelty anymore. That distinction now belongs to remote-deposit capture-a high-tech advancement that guarantees a big payoff for banks and their customers alike. "From a technological standpoint, it's the biggest thing happening in banking in 2007," said Lee Wetherington, senior vice president at Brentwood, Tenn.-based software maker Goldleaf Financial Inc. Remote-deposit capture eliminates the need for businesses to physically deposit checks at their bank branch. Using the new technology, checks are scanned...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Ideas needed for fixing health care financingRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Patrick Barkey
It's been 15 years since third-party presidential candidate Ross Perot briefly captured the nation's attention with his crisp, witty promises to "look under the hood" to fix the problems in Washington. Since that time, some problems have gotten worse, some have gotten better. But in this era of political polarization and legislative gridlock, the idea of a new face coming to town to actually fix some of the problems we face today is as appealing as ever. What would such...
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NOTIONS: How to save lives, money, and still win re-electionRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Bruce Hetrick
As a hearing-impaired, diabetic, migraine-suffering cancer survivor, father of a cancer survivor and widower of a cancer victim, I've followed my share of doctor's orders. So I've taken two of Monroe's tenaciousness pills, and I'm calling (well, writing) you in the morning. Since my late wife the non-smoker was diagnosed with a smoker's cancer, I've shared our sad story to educate government officials and citizens about the dangers of secondhand smoke. But let's skip the emotions this time, abandon impatience...
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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Will costs and priorities merge or crash?Restricted Content

March 19, 2007
Ed Feigenbaum
In our first column of the session, introducing you to the assorted variables that would influence the policy outcomes of 2007, we cautioned you that the next few months would be focused upon money and priorities. Lawmakers and Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels had a number of pet initiatives they wanted to see enacted and funded. But, after ensuring that programs and entities that had been shortchanged in the past biennium would be compensated and after bumping up education spending a...
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Rivals tangle over impact of new hospitals: Health care providers disagree on how head-to-head competition will affect costsRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
Tracy Donhardt
Once joined at the hip, the two main health care providers in Tippecanoe County-Arnett Health System and Greater Lafayette Health Services-have become fierce rivals. Each is building a new hospital and will compete to provide services for the 154,000 county residents, and tens of thousands more in surrounding counties. Lafayette-based Arnett, a multi-specialty medical practice, has 140 doctors at a dozen area locations, plus eight facilities in other parts of the state. Greater Lafayette Health Services, part of Mishawaka-based Sisters...
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A whole new ballgame: More women stepping up to the plate in commercial real estateRestricted Content

March 12, 2007
Cynthia Sequinthe
Yogi Berra once said, "You give 100 percent in the first half of the game, and if that isn't enough, in the second half you give what's left." Women are accepting his challenge with a chuckle, running onto the commercial real estate field and playing to win. They also are balancing home and family. Why not? The U.S. commercial real estate market is worth about $3.5 trillion, according to Real Capital Analytics, a New York research firm. Bridget Farren, founder...
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Tax break would reward patent producers: Indiana legislators view bill as way to attract young, innovative high-tech companies and solo entrepreneursRestricted Content

March 12, 2007
Scott Olson
A bill weaving its way through the Indiana General Assembly could give the state an edge in attracting and growing the type of high-tech ventures several states covet. Indiana House Bill 1461, introduced by Rep. Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, advanced to the Senate after sailing through the House of Representatives on Feb. 26 by a vote of 95-3. The legislation that was referred to the Senate's Economic Development and Technology Committee would provide a tax incentive that would shield income from...
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