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Daily Local News – February 4, 2015

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Ridership for Bloomington Transit Services has continuously increased over the past decade, according to new statistics from Bloomington Transit; Monroe County will say No More to domestic violence and sexual assault next week with an interactive awareness event and community service project; New flood hazard maps for Brown County have been released by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA; Visitors to downtown Bloomington’s 4th street parking garage, between College and Walnut streets, may have been disconcerted this winter to see the facility held up by metal poles and entire groups of parking spaces blocked off by scaffolding; The U.S. Senate’s Finance Committee, including Indiana Senator Dan Coats, aggressively questioned Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell for three hours this morning.

FEATURE
So far three Democrats have officially filed to run for mayor of Bloomington in the municipal elections this year. And so far, all three have pledged not to accept any corporate money to fund their campaigns. But does that pledge really mean businesses won’t influence the mayoral election? WFHB News Director Joe Crawford brings us that story for today’s WFHB community report.

BETTER BEWARE!
Ransomware has been an increasing danger for computers, but now the bad guys are targeting smartphones and other mobile devices. Beware, bigtime!

CREDITS
Anchors: Taylor Telford, Kelly Wherley
Today’s headlines were written by Sophia Saliby
Along with Alycin Bektesh for CATSweek, in partnership with Community Access Television services
Bloomington Beware was produced by Richard Fish
Our feature was produced by Joe Crawford
Our engineers today are Jim Lang, Adam Reichle and Matt Gwaltney
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes
Executive Producer is Joe Crawford
Managing Producer is Alycin Bektesh

No More to Domestic Violence Event to be Held Next Week

Monroe County will say No More to domestic violence and sexual assault next week with an interactive awareness event and community service project. The Protective Order Assistance Partnership along with several Indiana University student groups will be hosting an event next Monday, February 9th. It’s titled Monroe County Says No More. Activities will include decorating tote bags to be filled with winter clothing and donated to Middle Way House, a local domestic violence shelter. Participants in the event can also help create a community quilt and listen to a new public service announcement about domestic violence. The sponsors are also requesting donations of women’s winter gloves, hats, scarves, and thick socks for the event. It will take place from one to four PM in the Indiana Memorial Union Georgian Room.

Bloomington Transit Services Are Increasing In Popularity

Ridership for Bloomington Transit Services has continuously increased over the past decade, according to new statistics from Bloomington Transit. 2014 set an all-time high for ridership with over three and a half million riders, a seventy-two percent increase since 2004. A press release from Bloomington Transit cited progress over the past decade, including the opening of the new Downtown Transit Center on East Third and Walnut streets. According to the city, transit services have been improved with the inclusion of new routes for underserved areas in the community and expanded hours on both weeknights and the weekend. A bus tracker application and a new website design have also been put in place with the goal of making services more accessible for Bloomington residents. Funds for this progress have mostly come from federal grants. Bloomington Transit’s service has received numerous awards in recent years, including the American Public Transportation Association’s Outstanding Public Transportation Award in North America in 2010.

Interchange – Terror Skies: The Drone as Judge and Jury

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In Part One, we’re joined by Majed Akhter, an Assistant Professor of Geography at Indiana University Bloomington whose current research examines how state power shapes, and is in turn shaped by, mobile objects such as drones and rivers. His writing focuses especially on Pakistan and the United States.

And in Part Two we’ll joined by Stephen John and Greta Wohlrabe to discuss a new play being produced by The Cardinal Stage Company called “Grounded” by George Brant about a female Air Force fighter pilot “grounded” by pregnancy who becomes a drone pilot operating out of a trailer in the Nevada desert. John is the play’s director and Wohlrabe its star.

Morse Peckham had this to say about state violence and terrorism back in 1987 (“Literature and the State”).

It cannot be that the state objects to terrorism because its citizens are being killed. In this country the citizens kill each other by murder and automobiles, fifty percent of the latter by drunken driving, and the state remains on the whole quite unruffled, except when some group of citizens forming itself as an organ of the state manipulates the state to take some action….No, the state objects to terrorism for quite different reasons. A state maintains its legitimacy by maintaining a monopoly on the use of violence for politics and governance. Terrorism is a challenge to the state’s monopoly on violence for such purposes….The trouble with violence is that if it is used in its ultimate forms there is no further recourse. So we may understand civilization as the strategy by which control and position are maintained without resorting to violence. Legal texts are of the first importance, of course, in circumventing the use of violence as well as justifying violence.

Related
Dronification of State Power

Grounded (Cardinal Stage Company)

Credits
Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Board Engineer: Jonathan Richardson
Social Media: Carissa Barrett
Executive Producer: Joe Crawford

Ins and outs of money – Teens & Credit Cards

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Giving your teenager a credit card—valuable money lesson or a parent’s worst nightmare? Our unbiased financial expert weighs in with benefits of teens “going plastic” that might surprise you.

Measles Outbreak in Indiana concerns

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Indiana, generally, and Monroe County, specifically, appear to be relatively safe from experiencing the kind of measles outbreak that California is having, at least according to some local experts on public health. Correspondent David Murphy spoke about these issues with Ross Silverman, a professor at the IU school of public health in Indianapolis, and Amy Meek, Program Manager for the Monroe County Public Health Department. We will first hear first from Silverman and then from Meek.

Funding For Bean Blossom School Corporation

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Officials at the Richland Bean Blossom Community School Corporation raised concerns about funding for public education at a school board meeting last month. Doug Uhls, who represents the district’s Education Association, urged community members to keep a close eye on the state legislature this year.

“I know that our governor is proposing over $200 million increase over the next two years for education,” Uhls said. “But almost $49 million of it is going toward charter schools in his proposal…You don’t have to be a math teacher to know that’s about a quarter of the proposed increase going towards a pretty small segment of our students.”

Randy Wright, a member of the school board, had similar thoughts. Wright also encouraged community members to talk to their legislators about education.

“Dollars for our kids are very, very important, so we really need to get that money for our students,” Wright said. “Get to the Statehouse. Make your voice heard. It’s all about public education in my opinion.”

Also at the meeting the district superintendent, Mike Wilcox, announced he will begin hosting a monthly podcast. Wilcox said the program, which is called Super Chat, will be available from the district’s website.

“Hopefully I can break things down to where people understand a lot of things that are in the newspapers…about school, both locally and statewide,” Wilcox said.

The Corporation’s website is www.rbbcsc.k12.in.us

Bill moved in senate to expand bus services

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Earlier today a committee in the Indiana Senate moved forward a bill that could expand bus service in Monroe County. The bill would give the Monroe County Council the option to raise taxes and expand the reach of Bloomington Transit, which currently serves only the city of Bloomington. Senator Mark Stoops from Bloomington is sponsoring the legislation. Monroe County already has a Rural Transit Service. But in a statement issued today, Stoops said that service has been hit with budget cuts and “has to turn down thousands of rides every year.” The bill now moves to the full Senate, where any member can amend it.

Employees hired to manage invasive vegetation

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The city of Bloomington has hired two full-time employees to manage the increasing problem of invasive vegetation. Dave Williams, the operations director for the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, made the announcement last week before the Board of Parks Commissioners.

“This has become a huge issue for any land-holding agency as well as private property owners,” Williams said. “It’s become a challenge for us to restore the natural habitat in areas like Lower Cascades Park, Griffy Lake…and neighborhood parks.”

Jon Behrman has been hired full time to oversee native vegetation management and native planting initiatives. A second position filled by Haskell Smith will expressly work to combat invasive plant species.

“The latest and greatest pest is the emerald ash borer,” Williams said. “What we find ourselves doing is getting more into the (tree) removal business than the planting business. We have long since walked away from our ability to do much more than occasional contractual pruning of trees, which over the life of the tree, if you do it young, can save you tons of dollars.”

The Board praised the hires. Williams said climate change will continue to necessitate management of invasive vegetation.

“The (emerald ash borer) isn’t the end of it,” Williams said. “There are other potential threats to maple trees…There will always be something to fight and combat and control.”

Also at the meeting the board approved ongoing partnerships between the City of Bloomington and the Indiana University School of Public Health.

Daily Local News – February 3, 2015

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Earlier today a committee in the Indiana Senate moved forward a bill that could expand bus service in Monroe County;The city of Bloomington has hired two full-time employees to manage the increasing problem of invasive vegetation;Officials at the Richland Bean Blossom Community School Corporation raised concerns about funding for public education at a school board meeting last month.

FEATURE
Indiana, generally, and Monroe County, specifically, appear to be relatively safe from experiencing the kind of measles outbreak that California is having, at least according to some local experts on public health. Correspondent David Murphy spoke about these issues with Ross Silverman, a professor at the IU school of public health in Indianapolis, and Amy Meek, Program Manager for the Monroe County Public Health Department. We will first hear first from Silverman and then from Meek.

INS AND OUTS OF MONEY
Giving your teenager a credit card—valuable money lesson or a parent’s worst nightmare? Our unbiased financial expert weighs in with benefits of teens “going plastic” that might surprise you.

CREDITS
Anchors:Casey Kuhn, Chris Martin
Today’s headlines were written by Anson Shupe, Carmen Gozalo, Emily Beck and Joe Crawford
Along with Alycin Bektesh for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by David Murphy
The Ins and Outs of Money is produced by Dan Withered, in partnership with the Monroe County Public Library and The United Way of Monroe County.
Our engineer is Jose Rodriguez
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Managing Producer is Alycin Bektesh,
Executive Producer is Joe Crawford.

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