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Author Archives: WFHB News

Report: Indiana School Voucher Program Participation Reaching Peak

School voucher demand in Indiana is leveling off, according to a report from Indiana University’s Center for Evaluation and Education Policy published last month. The report titled “Mapping the Growth of Statewide Voucher Programs in the United States” tracked publicly- funded school voucher programs in Ohio, Louisiana, Wisconsin, and Indiana. Voucher programs cover private school tuition for students from low-income families given that they meet eligibility requirements. Indiana’s voucher program, The Indiana Choice Scholarship Program has been in place since 2011 and offers students a variety of ways to meet eligibility to attend private schools, such as having a sibling enrolled in the program or attending public school for one year. The program offers both ninety-percent coverage and fifty-percent coverage scholarships depending on a family’s income level. In the first two years of its implementation, only about half of the available scholarships were used. Most recently, legislators have removed the enrollment cap, and participation in the program increased approximately one hundred and seventeen percent from the previous year. However, the question remains on whether these numbers will continue to increase. Publicly-funded voucher programs face critics who say that money is being funneled away from public education to private, often religious, institutions.

Interchange – Bloomington City Council Primary Candidates: District 5 Democrats

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Host Doug Storm is joined by District 5 candidates for the Democratic nomination to run for the Bloomington City Council seat in November.

Guests
Isabel Piedmont-Smith
Kurt Babcock
Gabriel Colman

Previous Candidate Conversations
Interchange – Bloomington City Council Primary Candidates: District 1 Democrats
Interchange – Bloomington City Council Primary Candidates: District 4 Democrats
Interchange – Bloomington City Council Primary Candidates: District 3 Democrats
Interchange – Primary Candidates for Mayor: A Conversation

Related
Democracy for Monroe County Forum, 3/31

Music:
“Vote for Me” – Chicago
“Mayor of Simpleton” – XTC

Credits
Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Board Engineer: Jonathan Richardson
Executive Producer: Joe Crawford

Major Challenges for Bloomingfoods

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Bloomington’s local co-op grocery is undergoing major challenges. That is how a press release from Bloomingfoods describes recent developments there.

Tim Clougher, the former board president, has resigned and been replaced by another board member, Caroline Beebe. At the same time, Bloomingfoods has invited a national organization to review its operations.

Last week, the Daily Local News ran a feature interview with a co-op member, Keith Taylor, who had been circulating a petition that demanded just such a review or an audit. Taylor also researches cooperatives at the Ostrom Workshop at IU. He also stated that he had access to most of the board and many of its employees. He had come to the conclusion that Bloomingfoods may not survive the imminent arrival of competition unless it made significant changes.

The Bloomingfoods press release acknowledges major challenges, mentioning the announcements from Lucky’s Market and from Wholefoods that they were opening stores in town. It didn’t mention that the recently renovated Kroger on College Mall Road has an expanded natural and whole foods section, an area in which Bloomingfoods has specialized.

Bloomingfoods announced that it has asked for the assistance of the National Co-operative Grocers Association, the leading professional organization of this sector, to which Bloomingfoods belongs. The external reviewers have been scheduled to pay a site visit at the end of April. In the interest of full disclosure, Bloomingfoods is an underwriter at WFHB.

Bring It On! – April 20, 2015

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Clarence Boone and Jacinda Townsend welcome Dr. Raymond Wise.

PART ONE
On tonight’s show, Clarence and Jacinda welcome Dr. Raymond Wise, director of the IU African American Choral Ensemble. He joins us for a discussion on the history and future of the Chorale Ensemble, along with providing an overview of their annual Spring concert.

PART TWO
Headline news and local calendar events of interest to the African-American community.

CREDITS
Hosts: Clarence Boone and Jacinda Townsend
Bring It On! is produced by Clarence Boone
Executive Producer is Joe Crawford
Our News Editor is Michael Nowlin
Our Board Engineer is Chris Martin

Activate! – Trashion Refashion: Kelly Wherley and Deb Christiansen

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Kelly Wherley and Deb Christiansen on Trashion ReFashion and their experience with this great event. Also, more volunteer opportunities from the City of Bloomington Volunteer Network.

LINKS
Center for Sustainable Living – Discardia
Trashion Refashion
Sidewalk Exchange/Reuse Volunteer
Recycle for Charity

IN Nature – Morel Mushrooms

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Hola Bloomington – April 17, 2015

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Hola Bloomington hosts Israel Herrera and Carmen Gozalo host a special segment “Un cafecito con…” with Rachel Lears, the director of the documentary titled, “The Hand the Feeds You,” and real character Mahoma Lopez. They discuss the documentary which is about the struggle of low-wage undocumented Latino workers that create a union to receive a decent labor treatment and fair salary. It has been selected best documentary in DOC NY, Full Frame and AFI DOCS.

Los locutores de Hola Bloomington Israel Herrera y Carmen Gozalo albergan un segmento de “Un cafecito con..” Rachel Lears, directora del documental “La mano que alimenta” y personaje real Mahoma López. “La mano que alimenta” es un documental sobre la lucha de los trabajadores Latinos de bajos salarios e indocumentados que crean un sindicato para recibir un tratamiento digno y salario justo. El documental fue llamado el mejor documental en DOC NY, Full Frame and AFI DOCS.

bloomingOUT – April 16, 2015

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Tonight our hosts Jeff Poling and Ryne Shadday discuss news and calendar in recent events. Jeff Jewel interviews mayoral candidate John Hamilton. Our music for tonight was “Time” by Steve Grand. We also heard our weekly segment “Out on Campus,” Arielle Soussan has a conversation with IU students about RFRA’s impact on student life. The bloomingOUT staff would like to give a special thanks to our guest John Hamilton.

Credits
Hosts Jeff Poling, Ryne Shadday, Jeff Jewel
Executive Producer Joe Crawford
Producer Olivia Davidson
Script Coordinator Hayley Bass
Board Engineer Carissa Barrett
Interns Jorge Guillen, Megan McCullough, Jacob Samples, and Andrew Sims

Bloomington Free Parking Happy Hour

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Last night the Bloomington City Council voted to give downtown drivers back 2 hours of free parking each day. The Council voted to start enforcing the meter rules at 9 a.m. instead of 8 a.m. They also moved the end of parking enforcement up an hour, from 10 p.m. to 9 p.m. Council member Steve Volan presented a proposal to cut the enforcement hours. Volan said the idea was based on a proposal from Mayor Mark Kruzan’s administration.

“They were suggesting cutting 4 hours out of the 18 hour days” Volan referencing the proposal of Kruzan’s administration. “Both my ordinance only propose to cut 2 hours of the day off.” Volan states.

Cutting the enforcement hours is expected to cost the city government $175,000 a year in meter revenue. Although it approved the reduction in hours, the Council rejected another proposal that would have cut costs for drivers. Volan suggested reducing the cost of parking on the edges of downtown, where many parking spaces are under-utilized. He proposed cutting the cost from a dollar an hour to 50 cents an hour. But some Council members, including Susan Sandberg, said that would be too confusing for residents.

Sandberg exclaims, “I think consistency is our smartest strategy in trying to, again, get the public to vie in to the fact we no longer have 2 hour free parking” “having it be a dollar can be a prohibitory factor” Sandberg says.

The Council did approve several other changes to the parking rule. The parking garage on Morton Street will now allow drivers 3 hours of free parking. The Council also gave the mayor discretion to suspend meter operation on holidays and in other special circumstances, such as extreme weather. The changes don’t take effect until after the mayor signs the legislation and the City Clerk publishes it.

Law Limiting Plastic Shopping Bags

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Momentum is building for a law in Bloomington that would seek to limit the use of plastic shopping bags. This week the Bloomington Commission on Sustainability urged the Bloomington City Council to draw up and enact such an ordinance. Andrea Jobe, a City council appointee to the Sustainability Commission, reported to the commission about the “Bring Your Own Bag” initiative, the working title of the draft ordinance that could be brought to the City Council as soon as May.

“When fully implemented this ordinance apply to business that give away plastic bags” Jobe states. “This isn’t new” Jobe says, “Plastic bag ordinances have been effective in over 130 cities in the US…and at least 70 countries.”

Jobe said that the draft ordinance will call for a ban on stores giving non-reusable plastic bags to their customers. She said the bags cause problems beyond litter.

“They cause issues at the recycling centers and landfills and clog up the equipment” Jobe explains. “The idea is to bring a reusable bag and get the community in the habit of doing so”

It will include a charge for the supply of paper bags. There will be exemptions for plastic bags used for take-away fresh produce and meats, and for pharmaceuticals. Jobe then asked the Commission to send a letter of support for the initiative After some discussion, Jeff Jewell, Commission Chairperson, proposed and the members accepted such this request.

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