Local News

Great Lakes Programs Slashed Under Trump Budget

Mar 24, 2017

 

The health of the Great Lakes is in danger, according to statewide lawmakers and environmental leaders, due to budget cuts proposed by President Donald Trump.

The Great Lakes are the world’s largest system of freshwater lakes and the federal government currently spends around $300 million protecting them. Under President Trump’s proposed budget, that spending would be reduced to $5 million.

U.S Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana) says that money wasn’t being wasted.

Remaining residents of a lead-contaminated public housing complex in East Chicago are gearing up for a fight about the city’s plans to relocate them.

Sixty-seven families still lived in West Calumet Housing Complex as of Wednesday. It’s less than a quarter of the original residents in the neighborhood, which sits in a federal Superfund site and is slated for demolition, pending federal approval.

Indiana schools stand to lose about $56 million for teacher training and after school programs for low-income students, under proposed budget cuts by President Donald Trump’s administration.

Jennifer McCormick, Indiana superintendent of public instruction, says the proposed budget would be “a big hit” to the state. She says cuts would hamper efforts to attract teachers, stifle new programs under a new federal education law and reduce programs for low-income students.

Holcomb Now Backing Federal Health Care Bill

Mar 23, 2017

Governor Eric Holcomb says he’s backing the federal health care reform bill after expressing concerns about the measure only last week.

Methodist Hospitals and Franciscan Alliance are considering becoming northwest Indiana's largest healthcare provider, if the details can be worked out and regulators approve the proposal. A non-binding letter of intent was signed this week by the two.

Ray Grady, the President and CEO of the Gary-based system, was on "Regionally Speaking" on Thursday to talk  about the months-long process of finding a partner -- what will now happen over the next six months -- and what becoming part of the Franciscan Alliance system can bring to the future of northwest Indiana healthcare.

Ray Grady, Methodist Hospitals
Chicago Crusader

Today:  a conversation with Ray Grady, the President and CEO of Methodist Hospitals, about the letter of intent between the two-hospital system and Franciscan Alliance to explore a full integration of healthcare facilities and services in Lake County. 

Franciscan Alliance is one of the Midwest's largest providers.  He talks about the months-long process of finding a partner -- what will now happen over the next six months -- and what becoming part of the Franciscan Alliance system, if approved by regulators, will bring to the future of northwest Indiana healthcare.

Lakeshore Public Media

For 31 years David Capp was the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Indiana, which covers Gary, Hammond, East Chicago, South Bend, Fort Wayne and Lafayette.  Now Capp is out of office.  The former United States Attorney was planning on retiring in June, but after the new Presidential administration took over, he ended up leaving earlier than he had planned.  He spoke with Lakeshore Public Radio Reporter Sharon Jackson.

Committee OKs New Public Records Search Fee

Mar 22, 2017

 

A Senate committee approved a bill that would allow state and local government agencies to charge the public a substantial fee for lengthy public record searches.

Those searches are currently free.

 

Legal experts and lawmakers can’t agree on the constitutionality of a proposal that would require parents be notified if their underage daughter goes to court to get consent for an abortion.

Proposed legislation that would require guidelines for religious expression in public schools passed the Senate Education Committee, with an amendment altering the original intent.

House Bill 1024 would protect open prayer and religious dress, writings or other religious expression in schools.

Today:   A conversation with Purdue University Northwest assistant psychology professor Lori Petersen on her research into how preschoolers best learn how to count and related numerical concepts.  She began her study last fall with ten 3-year-olds who were enrolled at Purdue Northwest's Riley Child Center in Hammond.  Petersen talks about some of her early findings.

Manufacturing companies all over the state have open positions and can’t find qualified workers to fill them. These jobs require specialized training because the new world of manufacturing requires more technology-based skills. So companies are finding new opportunities to teach them.

THE PROBLEM IN ONE MANUFACTURING TOWN

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gaines / Indiana Public Media

Vulnerable and economically disadvantaged Hoosiers are getting a tool to ensure they receive early warning of severe weather emergencies. Lakeshore Public Radio Reporter Sharon Jackson spoke with John Erickson, the Director of Public Affairs for the Indiana Department of Homeland Security about its initiative to distribute 22-hundred all-hazard weather radios to those in-need.
 

Federal Budget Puts Low-Income College Grants On Chopping Block

Mar 21, 2017

The newest federal budget presented by President Donald Trump dramatically reduces money for grants designed to help low-income students go to college.

The budget would eliminate the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, money for students with exceptional financial need, and proposes a $3.9 billion reduction in Pell Grants, the primary federal college grant program.

EPA Gets First Cleanup Funds For Zone 2 Of East Chicago Superfund

Mar 21, 2017

The Environmental Protection Agency will get more money from more sources to clean up some of the most contaminated homes in East Chicago, Indiana.

The agency’s new administrative settlement, announced Monday, adds a new company to those responsible for funding the cleanup.

The new company is the U.S. Metals Refining Company. It joins DuPont and its sister company, Chemours, plus BP subsidiary Atlantic Richfield, as the “Potentially Responsible Parties” funding cleanup in the EPA’s USS Lead Superfund site.

City of Valparaiso website

The Valpo Parks Foundation is a key participant in city park improvement projects like the Tower Park renovation, now underway.  The project is being supported by the Foundation's "Leaders Giving Back" initiative. 

City of Valparaiso Parks and Recreation Director John Seibert came on "Regionally Speaking" on Tuesday to talk about how members of the community  are joining community leaders through the initiative -- and intend to finish the improvements this year.  Here's the conversation, beginning with Seibert talking about the city's parks and recreation system.

City of Valparaiso website

Today:  City of Valparaiso Parks and Recreation Director John Seibert talks about how the Parks Foundation is a key participant in park improvement projects like the Tower Park renovation, now underway.  The project is being supported by the Foundation's "Leaders Giving Back" initiative.

Around 80 families are still living in lead-contaminated public housing in East Chicago, Indiana. This week, they’ll receive details about where the city plans to relocate them after the March 31 deadline to move out.

U.S. Housing and Urban Development spokeswoman Elena Gaona say 250 families have relocated from West Calumet Housing Complex since the lead crisis began last fall. Another 19 have housing lined up.

NWI TIMES

Today:   The new Lake County Democratic Party chairman, James Weiser, joins us to talk about the change in leadership, his thoughts about how that change came about and his views on bringing together all local Democrats to meet the challenges that came after the November 2016 election that put Donald Trump into the White House. 

On Thursday, March 16, 2017,  the White House released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 “skinny budget,” which proposed eliminating funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). As you know, CPB funding is irreplaceable seed money for local public radio and television stations.

NWI Times

Town Council President LeAnn Angerman says that this change is going to better the town and the school systems attendance. 

What's it like to be addicted to heroin and any other drug that would give you a similar escape?

Is skateboarding making a resurgence, or has it never went away?

If someone challenged you to place your right hand on your cell phone and vow to never text and drive again, would you stick to it?

If you had a terminal illness, would you want your partner to find true love, again, without you? Really?

And do you know what a leprechaun really is? Or why people kiss the Blarney stone?

Alligator Records

World-renowned blues harmonica master James Cotton, whom Rolling Stone called, “One of the greats of all time, burning with brilliant virtuosity,” died on March 16, 2017 of pneumonia at St. David's Medical Center in Austin, Texas. He was 81. His overwhelmingly powerful harmonica playing was one of the iconic sounds of the blues. He toured worldwide for over 60 years.

Indiana scientists, engineers, doctors and entrepreneurs have been leaders in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields for generations -- and the Indiana Humanities is joining with Eli Lilly and Company, Dow AgroSciences and other organizations to celebrate the legacy of STEM in a two-year thematic initiative called "Quantum Leap."

Chicago Traveler website

The Federal Reserve Bank board on Wednesday decided to once again incrementally raise interest rates --the third such hike in the past 13 months.

Northwest Indiana financial advisor Greg Hammer came on "Regionally Speaking" on Thursday to examine the rate hike's impact on Hoosiers -- ranging from mortgages, to credit cards, to student loans, to what'll happen on Wall Street.  He first looks at how mortgage rates can change over time.

Justice Robert Rucker is retiring from the Indiana Supreme Court in May. At a recent event in Gary for the Indiana Supreme Court we got a chance to talk to the Roosevelt high school graduate bout his life and his philosophy for success. Lakeshore Public Radio’s Steven Lattimore has the story

Today:   Northwest Indiana financial advisor Greg Hammer talks about the decision by the Federal Reserve Bank board on Wednesday to once again incrementally raise interest rates --the third such hike in the  past 13 months.  Hammer looks at the impact  on Hoosiers ranging from mortgages, to credit cards, to student loans, to what'll happen on Wall Street.

East Chicago Residents band together to deal wit lead crisis Edit | Remove

In East Chicago there are several groups that that have formed to help residents get the help they need dealing with the lead crisis. As Lakeshore Public Radio’s Steven Lattimore reports, residents are making progress but there is long way to go.

According to Green Cities Incorporated Lake County has the second highest number of asthma related emergency room visits in the state. All the more reason they say, that the forty one hundred students in the East Chicago schools can benefit from a new plan to use green propane fueled school busses. As   Lakeshore Public radio’s Steven Lattimore reports school officials are making the move because the technology can save money on fuel and cut the pollution output from busses by eighty percent.

CPB

Patricia Harrison, president and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), made the following statement regarding the President’s proposed elimination of federal funding for public media.
 

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