State Government

High demand for road salt pushes costs up for state, city

September 29, 2014
 Associated Press and IBJ Staff
The Indianapolis Department of Public Works will pay 11.5 percent more for road salt this winter than it did a year ago. Salt prices on regional bids across the state are now an average of 57 percent higher than last year's prices, according to INDOT.
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Tax caps have greatest impact for rental-property, farm owners

September 29, 2014
 The Statehouse File
The owners of rental homes and apartments are among the property owners that are helped most by a tax cap system the state fully implemented in 2010.
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Coalition announces legislative agenda aimed at public fraud

September 29, 2014
 The Statehouse File
A group of officials representing local, state and federal governments will push a series of legislative proposals meant to protect public funds and speed the recovery of tax dollars lost to fraud.
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Former workers file suit against state lawmaker

September 28, 2014
Associated Press
A state lawmaker who was one of nine Republican state senators to vote against a right-to-work law two years ago is accused in a lawsuit of failing to pay his employees more than $220,000 in wages and other benefits.
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State turns to tech for deeper, speedier data analysis

September 28, 2014
Associated Press analysis
Former Indianapolis Mayor Steve Goldsmith is hailing a new government management system adopted by Indiana that can better use troves of government data and predict how tax dollars should be allocated.
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Indiana's goal: Use data to reimagine education

September 26, 2014
Shaina Cavazos, Chalkbeat Indiana
IT entrepreneur Steve Braun, the new director of the Department of Workforce Development, is leading the effort to harness data to figure out what skills kids will need to succeed in the workplaces of the future.
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Access counselor doubts city's need for secrecy on RFP

September 26, 2014
Kathleen McLaughlin
Indiana Public Access Counselor Luke Britt told the city of Indianapolis that he wasn't swayed by its reasons for withholding its request for proposals for a new $500 million criminal justice complex.
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Indiana unemployment agency wins anti-fraud grant

September 26, 2014
Associated Press
The Indiana Department of Workforce Development is receiving nearly $1.5 million from the federal government to help catch those who collect unemployment payments while still working.
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Experts: Telemedicine can bridge mental health gap

September 25, 2014
Associated Press
Modern technology offers a way to deliver much-needed mental health care to rural sections of Indiana where little or none is available, experts told a legislative study committee Thursday.
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DeLaney asks for tougher rules after ethics conflict

September 24, 2014
Associated Press
An Indiana House Democrat is calling for a new ethics rule designed to close loopholes exposed by departing Republican House Speaker Pro Tem Eric Turner.
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Big-money donors play in quiet 2014 state election cycle

September 24, 2014
Associated Press
Campaign finance data collected by the state show that more than $35 million has been given to candidates and campaign committees so far this year.
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Indiana preschool pilot to begin in 4 counties

September 24, 2014
Associated Press
Four urban Indiana counties selected for a state-funded preschool pilot program will launch it in early 2015, officials said Wednesday during a day of meetings among state and local officials and educators.
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New area code on tap for Indianapolis region

September 24, 2014
Kathleen McLaughlin
The telecommunications industry wants to add a new area code for the parts of central Indiana covered by 317. The bottom line for all residents: 10-digit dialing would be required for local calls.
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State's way of paying public defenders debated

September 23, 2014
Associated Press
The state pays the salaries of its judges and prosecutors, but public defenders are paid by counties that are only partially reimbursed for their costs—an approach that some including the executive director of the Indiana Public Defender Council want to see changed.
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Indiana Toll Road operator set for short bankruptcy

September 23, 2014
Bloomberg News, Associated Press
The operator of the Indiana Toll Road, which paid $3.8 billion for a 75-year operating lease, won approval Tuesday of a schedule paving the way to exit bankruptcy court protection in just more than a month.
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More funds earmarked for domestic violence programs

September 22, 2014
 The Statehouse File
If all the money is distributed, it will bring the state’s total spending on domestic violence programs to $4.2 million this year. That’s about 35 percent more than the state spent last year.
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Democratic opponent calls Turner 'ghost' candidate

September 22, 2014
Associated Press
Democratic House candidate Bob Ashley said the way in which Turner is leaving the General Assembly effectively means the voters in his central Indiana district have a choice between Ashley and whichever official local Republicans pick for the seat.
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Indiana pension fund assets grow to record high

September 21, 2014
Associated Press
Indiana's pension fund for public employees and teachers has grown to a record high of $30.2 billion in assets thanks to "a great year" of returns on its investments, the fund's leader says.
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New Indiana Toll Road operator due amid bankruptcy

September 21, 2014
Associated Press
The debt-ridden private company running the Indiana Toll Road intends to transfer its operations to a new entity under a bankruptcy filing planned for Monday.
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Embattled Indiana Rep. Turner to resign after elections

September 19, 2014
Associated Press,  The Statehouse File
Republican Rep. Eric Turner of Cicero said Friday that he will leave the General Assembly to take a job with a Christian group in Atlanta.
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New state panel begins review of professional licenses

September 18, 2014
Associated Press
Since 2002, Indiana has created more than 40 new professional requirements, including 20 new licensed occupations, while eliminating only three licensure requirements and regulatory mandates.
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Indiana settles DCS adoption suit for $15 million

September 18, 2014
Associated Press
The state will pay $15.1 million to about 1,800 families who adopted special needs children. The settlement was filed in LaPorte Superior Court on Thursday afternoon and still needs court approval.
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Domestic violence activist, state disagree on deal

September 18, 2014
Associated Press
An advocate for victims of domestic violence said her group reached agreement Thursday with Indiana officials over funding for the private agencies serving them, but a state official denied there was a deal.
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30 counties to be reimbursed for snow storm costs

September 18, 2014
Paige Clark, The Statehouse File
Currently, $1.13 million has been processed for reimbursement, and more federal money will be distributed as applications are processed.
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Indiana asks tollway firm to prove financial stability

September 17, 2014
Associated Press
The state agency that oversees the Indiana Toll Road has given the highway's debt-saddled private operator until late November to prove that it's meeting its debt obligations.
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