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Some still not sold on I-69 plans in southern Indiana

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The complaints were quieter but still firm during the latest public hearing about plans for the Interstate 69 extension through southern Indiana.

Some 400 people turned out Tuesday night at the Monroe County Fairgrounds to see and comment on the state highway department's proposals for I-69 interchanges and access roads along the current Indiana 37 route between Bloomington and Martinsville, The Herald-Times reported.

About 20 people spoke against the plans, raising concerns focused on the loss of land, noise and air pollution, lack of bicycle access and money being diverted from local roads.

"This process is absurd and nothing that is said here makes any difference," Bloomington bike shop owner Jeanne Smith said.

Construction work is under way on a nearly 70-mile stretch of the highway from near Evansville to near Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center southwest of Bloomington, where opposition to the highway has been particularly intense since state officials selected its route a decade ago.

Tuesday's meeting was mostly courteous compared to when tempers flared during the last state-sponsored public hearing on the highway section in 2005.

But Hoosier Voices for I-69 representative Morgan Hutton was the only person to speak in favor of the project. Hutton praised the highway project and encouraged people "to keep educating themselves about the benefits."

The plans presented at the meeting covered alternatives for interchanges and access roads on the 21-mile stretch going north from Bloomington toward Indianapolis.

Two proposals use the existing Indiana 37 as an access road in several locations. Estimates for those plans are about $315 million. Other proposals use the pavement and structures of Indiana 37 in many locations and include narrower grassy medians and highway shoulders. Those proposals are estimated at $250 million to $267 million.

Another public hearing will be held after a final proposal for the section is released, which is expected this fall, said Cher Elliott, a spokeswoman for the Indiana Department of Transportation

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  • 69
    Stop complaining. We are tired od hearing you gripe all the time. Let it go. It's gonna happen no matter what you say

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  1. Can your dog sign a marriage license or personally state that he wishes to join you in a legal union? If not then no, you cannot marry him. When you teach him to read, write, and speak a discernible language, then maybe you'll have a reasonable argument. Thanks for playing!

  2. Look no further than Mike Rowe, the former host of dirty jobs, who was also a classically trained singer.

  3. Current law states income taxes are paid to the county of residence not county of income source. The most likely scenario would be some alteration of the income tax distribution formula so money earned in Marion co. would go to Marion Co by residents of other counties would partially be distributed to Marion co. as opposed to now where the entirety is held by the resident's county.

  4. This is more same-old, same-old from a new generation of non-progressive 'progressives and fear mongers. One only needs to look at the economic havoc being experienced in California to understand the effect of drought on economies and people's lives. The same mindset in California turned a blind eye to the growth of population and water needs in California, defeating proposal after proposal to build reservoirs, improve water storage and delivery infrastructure...and the price now being paid for putting the demands of a raucous minority ahead of the needs of many. Some people never, never learn..

  5. I wonder if I can marry him too? Considering we are both males, wouldn't that be a same sex marriage as well? If they don't honor it, I'll scream discrimination just like all these people have....

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