Articles

Ergo Office Furniture LLC: Workers sit, ergo offices need furniture Retailer deals primarily in used desks and chairs

Businesses sometimes need office furniture immediately. That’s one of the reasons Ergo Office Furniture has thrived. Ergo, at 2525 N. Shadeland Ave., sells, rents or leases office furniture to its customers. Though the company does carry some new furniture, and can order whatever it doesn’t have, co-owner Mark S. Kemper said 70 percent of Ergo’s revenue is in used furniture. The advantage of selling used furniture is that it’s normally right there in the inventory. Brand-new furniture, in many cases,…

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CHRIS KATTERJOHN Commentary: Keep lights on at the Statehouse

CHRIS KATTERJOHN Commentary Keep lights on at the Statehouse Every morning I wake up happy that my job doesn’t require getting things through the Indiana General Assembly. I don’t have that kind of patience, and I’m not cut out to deal with that much frustration. I understand that big issues take time to be resolved and that compromise rarely happens overnight, but for a few issues that everyone seemed to agree were critical from the outset, the time it’s taking…

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Wishard aims to even it up: Health system could break deficit string

About half the bills Wishard Health Services used to send out came back sans payment thanks to an error. Now that happens only 4 percent of the time, a change that saves millions, according to Wishard number-crunchers. Improvements such as these might spur a multimillion-dollar turnaround in Wishard’s ledger this year, said Matt Gutwein, the leader of Marion County’s safetynet hospital. Wishard will attempt to break even by the end of 2005, a far cry from the $77 million deficit…

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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH Ed Feigenbaum: Competing interests emerge to cloud coming budget tiff

At the beginning of the legislative session, you probably thought that given Republicans were firmly in charge at the Statehouse for the first time in 20 years, bu d g e t – m a k i n g would be easy. Guess again. And gear up for a major budget battle. When Gov. Mitch Daniels proposed his budget ideas, lawmakers immediately shot down the most visible and memorable feature: the 1-percent surtax on higher-income Hoosiers. House members then passed…

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EYE ON THE PIE Morton Marcus: Casino location none of state’s business

Let’s see if I have this right. This is Indiana, a state dominated by conservative thought. Folks here support the free market, unimpeded competition, the roughand-tumble world of entrepreneurs doing their stuff guided by the benevolent invisible hand. So, why don’t we live by our supposed principles? Case in point: gambling, specifically at French Lick, where the Donald has ducked out, thus reopening the bidding for the right to build a casino and hotel complex in Orange County. Let’s review…

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Council launches new HR initiative: Target is small companies that have no administrator

Small-business owners who need help wading through myriad human resources issues now have another source to consider-the Indianapolis Private Industry Council Inc. The 23-year-old IPIC, better known for overseeing the seven WorkOne career centers in Marion County, has leapt into the HR arena by partnering with a handful of professionals who have agreed to honor the agency’s low-cost pledge. Sixty thousand people walk through the doors of the centers each year looking for work. But many of their potential employers-many…

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School moratorium concerns industry: State officials studying whether too much money is being spent on non-educational construction projects

Designers of educational facilities are expressing concern over the future of school construction in Indiana as state officials mull guidelines that could bring changes to the process. Upon taking office in January, Gov. Mitch Daniels temporarily halted new school-construction borrowing to give the Department of Local Government Finance time to develop guidelines to ensure taxpayer money is spent wisely. The 120-day moratorium is a result of Daniels’ theory that school corporations spend too much money on projects unrelated to instruction….

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EYE ON THE PIE: Care-giving could be competitive edge

Joe Gomeztagle and I were having delicious but illicit desserts at Steak n Shake in Merrillville. Joe, you will recall, is the guy who was the force behind getting the state’s former property-assessment practices declared unconstitutional. This day, Joe was telling me that we’re on the wrong track in Indiana again. What I like about Joe is that he is often out ahead of others who are labeled “thinkers.” While others are pushing for government efficiency, Joe is talking about…

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McIntosh goes to bat for players at hearings: Former politician represents 3 stars grilled about steroids

Hoosiers who saw some of baseball’s biggest stars testify before a congressional committee about steroids may have caught a glimpse of former U.S. Rep. David McIntosh. The Republican Muncie native served Indiana’s second district in the House of Representatives from 1995 until 2001, and he ran unsuccessfully for governor in 2000. He is currently a partner at the Washington, D.C., office of international law firm Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw LLP. Commuting from Indiana to the nation’s capital, McIntosh’s legal…

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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Kenley’s funding plan has momentum despite critics

Remember when Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels felt “car-bombed” by House Democrats when they refused to provide a quorum for votes on 132 bills? Then Senate Tax and Fiscal Policy Committee Chairman Luke Kenley, RNoblesville, must have felt last week that his plan to help finance a new stadium for the Indianapolis Colts and an expansion for the Indiana Convention Center was hit by rocket-propelled grenades. Kenley proposed to finance the two projects through a combination of private, state and local…

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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: There are reasons for rising school construction costs More technology More sports

Public school officials around the state have received sharp criticism in recent years for authorizing construction that critics decry as ostentatious and excessively expensive. Chief among the targets, but not exclusively, are athletic facilities that are often perceived as superior to all but the largest of our NCAA Division I colleges and universities. Without taking sides in the fray, I would simply remind everyone that K-12 education is basically a community function driven by local decisions. The bulk of the…

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Software-maker expands through public incentives: Exact Target must prepare for market’s consolidation

It made for a great photo-op. With the morning sun shining brilliantly through the windows, Exact Target showed off its brand new headquarters in the Guaranty Building on Monument Circle. It was the second day of spring. Bipartisan smiles were the first item on the agenda. Gov. Mitch Daniels, a Republican, was there to celebrate the fast-growing e-mail software-maker’s $1.14 million package of government incentives. So was Mayor Bart Peterson, a Democrat. Exact Target had earned its tax credits, abatements…

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BULLS & BEARS: Understanding the effect of increasing interest rates

Interest rates are a major variable in the evaluation of any investment, whether it’s stocks, bonds, real estate … you name it. As interest rates change, they alter the value of all financial assets. Simple mathematics shows that, as interest rates rise, the present value of a dollar to be received tomorrow is worth less to an investor today. Thus, when interest rates rise, the prices of all investments move down in value. And conversely, when interest rates fall, investment…

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Indiana State Bar Association embraces construction: Organization starts Construction and Surety Law section to help lawyers who work in building-related fields

A new section of the Indiana State Bar Association is a little out of the ordinary. The Construction and Surety Law section, which went into operation last fall, focuses on a specific industry instead of a specialized area of the legal practice, such as liability or contract law. This approach is pretty uncommon for state bar associations, Indiana State Bar Association officials said. “This section represents the cutting edge for bar membership,” said Section Vice Chairman David J. Theising, a…

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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Lawmakers struggle amid chaos, but order will come

If you’re having a tough time following the twists and turns of the political soap opera that is the 2005 Indiana General Assembly, you are not alone. Legislators find themselves so perpetually distracted by all sorts of peripheral issues and actions that Eli Lilly and Co. might want to consider a new market for its adult ADD medication. What do we mean by this legislative attention deficit disorder? Think back to December, when the first order of business seemed to…

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D.C. key to meeting biz: Indianapolis lands conventions with Washington contingent

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Kim Allison wants people to think of one thing when they see her: Indianapolis. So she makes the rounds, on and off the clock, creating that connection. Whether she’s bowling or shopping, eating or reading, Allison has her hometown in mind-even though she’s living and working nearly 600 miles away. “We go to everything,” said Allison, who leads the Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association’s two-person office in suburban Washington, D.C. “It helps keep our name out there.” Thousands of…

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NOTIONS: Hazy logic: No business should have a license to kill

Saturday, Feb. 26, was the second-tolast day my boys, Austin and Zach, saw their stepmom alive. They didn’t see much of Pam that day. She and they slept late-Pam because she was ill with cancer, Austin and Zach because they’re teen-agers. Once everyone awoke, Zach had a six-hour photo assignment at the IU Natatorium. Late that afternoon, I took Austin to a movie, while my sister-in-law stayed with Pam. When we all returned home, we watched a video, discussed its…

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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Revised economic data show pronounced growth

Can government really create jobs? That’s a question candidates in the throes of a political campaign, whose rhetoric promises endless prosperity, will sometimes put to economists like me. My answer has always been that there is a lot our leaders can do to destroy jobs, but very little they can do to create them, at least in the short run. But recent events have caused me to reconsider this. Our government, or more accurately, the statistical agencies we employ to…

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Anthem, docs still skirmish: Insurer’s new pre-approval rules rankle some A rocky marriage

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield just dumped a load of extra work on the office staff of the average ear, nose and throat specialist, according Dr. Thomas Whiteman. The WellPoint Inc. subsidiary now requires pre-approval for nonemergency, high-tech imaging such as MRI or CAT scans. The insurer started the new policy March 1 to curb overuse. Whiteman said the average otolaryngologist-or ear, nose and throat specialist-schedules as many as eight of these tests a day. If Anthem insures just…

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Unifying Indiana’s IT efforts: State’s new CTO plans to centralize computing

Indiana’s state Web portal, access-Indiana, won at least a dozen awards over the last four years. It was frequently lauded as a model of modern government efficiency-robust, reliable and user-friendly. But, according to new Indiana Chief Technology Officer Karl Browning, the reality was only skin deep. Certainly, accessIndiana is the handsome public face of state information technology. But beneath the surface, there’s a tangled mess of unconnected systems, each managed independently by a separate agency. Gov. Mitch Daniels, a Republican,…

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