Statewide News

3D Bioprinted Organ Research Advancing In Indiana

May 11, 2018
Indiana University School of Medicine Dr. Burcin Ekser (middle) and some of the team of researchers who work on organ transplant technology. (Photo courtesy Indiana University School of Medicine)
Jill Sheridan

Indiana scientists are on the frontlines of research that could result in organs for transplant created by 3D bioprinting. 

Indiana University of School of Medicine research on organ transplant technology will get a boost from a $9 million, four-year agreement with the company Lung Biotechnology.   

Lawmakers will meet for the first special session since 2009. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Brandon Smith

The General Assembly will meet Monday in a special session to consider school safety, tax, and school takeover legislation. Much of the controversy will focus on that last measure and how it might affect schools across the state.

Donnelly-Braun Race Shaping Up To Be Contentious

May 11, 2018
Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) and his Republican challenger Mike Braun. (Photos courtesy of the U.S. Senate and Indiana General Assembly)
Brandon Smith

The Senate race between incumbent U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) and Republican Mike Braun is fully underway as both men gear up for what’s likely to be a contentious campaign. 

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Barbara Anguiano / WVPE

 

President Donald Trump unveiled his new slogan,"Keep America Great” at his campaign rally yesterday in Elkhart to a welcoming crowd. Protesters across the street however, had other thoughts about the president’s impact.

 

President Donald Trump’s supporters waited outside of the Elkhart middle school venue for hours before the rally. And they got an earful of chants against the president.
 

Religious leaders and protesters gathered before the meeting where a merit board will decide whether or not to fire two officers responsible for the 2017 death of an unarmed black man, Aaron Bailey.

Ahead of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department decision, faith leaders held a vigil to pray Indianapolis will not become what they call another failure of justice.

Several Factors Fuel Increase In Gas Prices

May 9, 2018

Indiana gas prices have been steadily increasing over the past couple weeks. According to American Automobile Association, AAA, Indiana has felt the biggest increase in gas prices – about 66 cents a gallon -- since the beginning of the year.

AAA Hoosier Motor Club spokesman Greg Seiter says even if prices stay high, they’re likely to fluctuate.

“Specifically in the Midwest and the Great Lakes Region, we tend to see the most volatile gas prices in the country,” Seiter says. “Unfortunately at this time of the year, this is really going to be a rollercoaster ride for us.”

Former Union Leader Talks Jobs Under President Trump

May 9, 2018

Retired union leader Chuck Jones believes President Donald Trump has not kept his promises to Hoosier workers. Jones’s statements come ahead of the president’s Thursday visit to Elkhart, a city that depends heavily on manufacturing jobs. 

According to Jones, Indiana residents don’t have to look further than the lost jobs at the Carrier plant in Indianapolis to see the President’s impact on Hoosier jobs.

While Jones said he appreciated the president making jobs a central campaign issue, he argues not much more has been done for workers since.

The state has now brought in more than $100 million less in corporate taxes than even updated, pessimistic projections predicted. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Brandon Smith

Indiana tax collections are still behind the state’s budget plan – by a small amount – as the final quarter of the fiscal year began.

Total revenues are about $26 million less than planned through 10 months of the current cycle. That’s a small miss – only about two-tenths of a percent off the mark. It was helped by a strong April, which brought in about $42 million more than expected.

President Donald Trump reportedly agreeing to allow year-round sales of gasoline with 15 percent ethanol could be food for Indiana corn growers, but environmentalists aren’t thrilled. 

Tritch Takes Dem Primary To Challenge Banks

May 9, 2018
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Rebecca Green

The Democratic primary race for Indiana's 3rd Congressional District helped drive voter turnout in Allen County, more than tripling the number of the previous primary.

 

State Rep. Jim Baird (R-Greencastle) won the 4th District Republican primary Tuesday. (Indiana House Republicans)
Brandon Smith

State Rep. Jim Baird (R-Greencastle) scored a surprise victory Tuesday in the Republican primary for Indiana’s 4th Congressional seat – the seat opened by Rep. Todd Rokita’s (R-Brownsburg) Senate run.

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Rebecca Green

Indiana’s GOP field for November’s election appears to be in place.

 

Mike Braun won the three-man battle to unseat Joe Donnelly in the US Senate, earning 41.1 percent of the vote in Allen County over opponents Rep. Luke Messer (R-6th) and Rep. Todd Rokita (R-4th).

 

Despite the testy nature of the race, Allen County GOP chairman Steve Shine says he hopes the three can set aside their differences, and for Braun to have support as he now looks to take Donnelly’s seat.

 

Two State Lawmakers Lose Primaries In Upsets

May 8, 2018
Rep. Dick Hamm (R-Richmond) and Sen. Joe Zakas (R-Granger) lost their primary races. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Brandon Smith

Most incumbents in state House and Senate races sailed to easy victories Tuesday – with two exceptions, including one of the longest-serving members of the current General Assembly.

Voters Across Indiana Approve More School Funding

May 8, 2018

Every one of the 12 school funding measures on the primary ballot passed this week.

Anderson Community Schools had two measures on the line, for school operations and construction. Both passed with around 60 percent of voter approval.

Goshen Community Schools also had two measures up for consideration, but the margin of victory was a bit closer – both passed with a little more than 50 percent of the vote.

Democrat Tobi Beck and Republican state Rep. Jim Baird will face off in November to fill Todd Rokita's seat in the U.S. House. Rokita’s departure made for a wide and competitive race. Seven candidates sought the Republican seat and six for the Democrat spot.

A judge will decide whether to throw out a lawsuit regarding a proposed Cass County wind farm this week. Two landowners claim a county wind ordinance would violate their property rights. 

Familes Push For Early Child Development Services

May 8, 2018

Working families from all 50 states, including Indiana, visited Washington D.C. to ask Congress to invest more in early childhood services. This is the second year for the Strolling Thunder event organized by non-profit Zero to Three.

Families are asking lawmakers for a national paid family leave program, more quality affordable childcare and more money for Early Head Start programs.

Dr. Myra Jones-Taylor, the chief policy officer with Zero to Three, says it’s important for babies to bond with family and get a healthy start.

Mackenzie Fields, Dan Meno and Eryn Ruder hold signs on the street across from Eli Lilly prior to the shareholder meeting. Fields illustrated all three of the signs. (Samantha Horton/IPB News)
Samantha Horton

A small group of advocates stood on the sidewalk facing Eli Lilly’s headquarters in downtown Indianapolis Monday holding neon signs asking for an explanation of skyrocketing insulin prices.

There T1International and People of Faith for Access to Medicines organized the gathering before Nicole Smith-Holt went inside to deliver a statement.

Tick Tests Often Inaccurate Indiana Experts Say

May 7, 2018
Students in Keith Clay's lab at Indiana University are working to develop a system that helps determine if it will be a bad year for mosquito and tick-borne diseases in Indiana. (Zach Herndon/WTIU)
Rebecca Thiele

A recent Centers for Disease Control report shows that tick and mosquito-borne diseases have more than tripled in the U.S. since 2004. But if you find a tick on your body, don’t count on a tick test to let you know if you have Lyme disease. 

A new partnership between the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and Ivy Tech Community College will make tuition discounts available to some Hoosier employees as part of an existing program at the 2-year college.

Ivy Tech’s Achieve Your Degree program connects Hoosiers with education programs – and financial aid options – to build their career credentials. The new partnership between Ivy Tech and the Indiana Chamber expands those efforts and includes a 5 percent discount on tuition costs not already covered by financial aid, for employees at the chamber’s member companies.

Rep. Tim Brown (R-Crawfordsville), center, presents the controversial Gary-Muncie school takeover bill to a meeting of the Legislative Council. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Brandon Smith

Members of the public Monday got their only chance to testify on legislation the General Assembly will consider in its upcoming special session.

The testimony was solely about a Gary-Muncie school takeover bill, the most controversial measure lawmakers will hear next week.

The National Institutes of Health announced Monday the launch of a large scale clinical trial that will expand efforts to give more HIV positive transplant candidates new kidneys. The new study will track 160 kidney transplants.

A change to the Endangered Species Act could harm plants and animals in Indiana that are awaiting federal help. A proposal by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service would get rid of blanket protections for all species that are close to becoming endangered or “threatened.” 

Hoosiers Warned About Voter Participation Letter

May 4, 2018
(Photo provided to IPB News)
Jill Sheridan

People across Indiana are contacting the Secretary of States office to report they’ve received letters that claim to be voting record audits. 

The letter from the “Indiana State Voter Report Program” lists voter information on past participation as well as that of friends and neighbors.  

Indiana has restrictions on voter participation records, only providing it to political parties and legislative caucuses.  

State Kicks Off New School Cybersecurity Initiative

May 4, 2018

Cybersecurity in schools is the focus of a new initiative from the Indiana Department of Education, and it includes thousands of dollars in funding for some schools.

The initiative aims to get schools on the same page, and more prepared, in terms of cybersecurity. Schools can apply for matching grants of up to $25,000 to build up their cybersecurity systems, and improve 24-hour system monitoring.

The department’s chief technology officer John Keller says it’s crucial, since more schools are offering more tech to students.

WSBT-TV

NAPPANEE, Indiana (AP) — CSX says severe weather may have played a role in a freight train derailment in northern Indiana that injured two crew members.

The company says in a statement that while the derailment's cause remains under investigation, "it appears that severe weather may have been a factor" in the derailment late Wednesday near Nappanee, about 25 miles southeast of South Bend.

The National Weather Service says a severe thunderstorm swept through that area about two hours before the derailment occurred just before midnight.

Evan Vucci / AP

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's campaign says he'll talk about the economy and recent tax cuts during a rally in Indiana next week.

The campaign says the May 10 rally will be held at Atlantic Aviation in South Bend.

Trump campaign official Michael Glassner says the president will discuss tax cuts he signed into law late last year and highlight how Indiana families are benefiting from them. Glassner says the president also wants to encourage his supporters to help increase the GOP majority in Congress by voting in November's congressional elections.

People are said to experience food insecurity when they do not have access to enough food for all family members to live a healthy, active life. An annual report measures the rate of food insecurity in Indiana slightly under the national average, almost 14 percent of the population. 

The county where the Map the Meal Gap report found the highest rate of food insecurity is Marion County, at 18.3 percent. The county with the lowest measured rate is Hamilton County, at 8.8 percent.  

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Barbara Anguiano / WVPE

Northeast Indiana's congressional delegation and recreational vehicle business leaders gathered in Elkhart for the sixth annual RV Industry Power Breakfast today. 

The group celebrated record March sale numbers, as well as looked ahead to the future of RV manufacturing how to appeal to a broader consumer base.

Indiana Family and Social Services Administration Secretary Jennifer Walthall says the state’s new Open Beds program has exceeded all expectations in its first six weeks. Open Beds is a partnership between FSSA and Indiana 2-1-1 to connect those in need of addiction treatment with local resources.

The program has served more than 100 people in its first six weeks. And Walthall says it’s significantly cut down the time it takes to connect them to the help they need, as in the case of a 23-year-old with a heroin addiction.

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