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New Yard Structures for Local Attorney


Also at the meeting, the Plan Commission approved a measure that allows local attorney Ken Nunn to build new structures his yard. Nunn asked the Commission to reduce a conservation easement on his property on Saddlebrook Lane, just southeast of Bloomington. Don Kacharik, from an engineering firm who inspected the site, said the measure would correct a surveying error made years ago.

The conservation easement prevents Nunn from building on a portion of his property. Commission member Scott Wells was the only opposition to the measure. Wells said Nunn’s subdivision was given lots of exemptions from the County’s rules when it was built in the 90s.

Nunn was once the attorney for the Plan Commission. Except for Wells’s opposition, he got a warm reception at the meeting. Nunn promised to consult his homeowners association before building new structures.

The Commission told Nunn his own personal injury law firm slogan, “It’s Just that Easy,” when giving him the O.K. to build his yard structures. The Commission voted 7 to 1 to reduce the conservation easement in his yard.

Storm water management debate


On September 11th, the storm water management board debated a line item in their 2015 budget at the urging of the county council. In their previous meeting the board struck funds that go toward a quarter-time treasurer deputy position. Board member Iris Keisling said that though she voted in the past to allow for storm water management funds to go to the treasurer’s office, it was not intended to be a recurring expense.

Salary plus benefits for the quarter-time position total ten thousand dollars that would come from the Storm Water Management budget. Board Member Kevin Enright recommended the board vote to reinstate the funds for one additional year.

Keisling disagreed, pointing out that other departments do not assist in funding the treasurer’s office and that the Storm Water Management budget should be treated the same as all other county offices.

A motion to reinstate the full ten thousand dollars to help the treasurer’s office pay for a quarter time deputy to oversee the collection of Storm Water Management fees was tied 2-2 and did not pass. Board member Julie Thomas offered a compromise.

County Council attorney Michael Flory was present at the meeting and commended the board on their collegiality and said the funds would help alleviate demands on the auditor and treasurers offices.

Richland Bean Blossom School Board approved 2015 budget


The Richland Bean Blossom School Board approved a budget for 2015 in their meeting on Monday, September 15th. While last year The Richland Bean Blossom School corporation was operating over budget, an increase in student enrollment allowed additional funds to come into the district this year. RBBCSC Superintendent Mike Wilcox introduced the new budget during the public hearing at the board meeting.

RBBCSC receives five thousand one hundred and sixty dollars per student from the state of Indiana. Wilcox says the increased enrollment reflects on the quality of the school system, and the replacement of teaching positions that were cut due to budgets in the past.

Board President Dana Kerr said that the balanced budget will allow the school corporation to now focus on long range planning.

The total budget for the school corporation for 2015 is twenty six million, four hundred seventy seven thousand, one hundred thirteen – more than one million dollars larger than the 2014 budget.

Director of Monroe County Public Library leaving early next year


The director of the Monroe County Public Library is leaving her post early next year. Sara Laughlin announced her retirement September 17th at a meeting of the Library’s Board of Trustees.

Laughlin says she has confidence in the Library’s current staff to manage the Library in the years to come. She told the Board there is still plenty to do before she leaves.

The Board also held a hearing on the Library’s budget for next year. The $8.2 million budget requires deficit spending, but financial officer Gary Lettelleir said that shouldn’t be a problem.

Lettelleir said the Library also has roughly $3 million in cash reserves.

Workers seeking to unionize outside of Bloomingfoods


A group of people gathered outside of Bloomingfoods’ near west side location in support of workers seeking to unionize. The crowd gathered in front of the main entrance and street parking spaces. WFHB Correspondent were on hand, providing updates online and on the Daily Local News on Monday September 22nd.

Daily Local News – September 18, 2014


A group of people are currently gathered outside of Bloomingfoods’ near west side location in support of workers seeking to unionize;The director of the Monroe County Public Library is leaving her post early next year;The Commissioner of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles said today that some Hoosiers deserve a refund;Students at Indiana University are working to remove shame and stigma associated with mental illness through a new program called The College Toolbox;A local gathering of citizens concerned with climate change will gather this sunday, coinciding with a bigger climate march organized in News York city over the weekend;The Richland Bean Blossom School Board approved a budget for 2015 in their meeting on Monday, September 15th;On September 11th, the storm water management board debated a line item in their 2015 budget at the urging of the county council;A Monroe County official says the County is dragging its feet on adding a non-Democrat to the Plan Commission;Also at the meeting, the Plan Commission approved a measure that allows local attorney Ken Nunn to build new structures his yard.

(No Feature)WFHB Correspondent Bloomingfoods’ workers gathering to unionize.

Up next is Voices in the Street, our weekly public opinion segment.

Anchors Carolyn VandeWiele, Scott Weddle
Today’s headlines were written by Alycin Bektesh
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services
Voices in the Street was produced by Kelly Wherley,
Our engineers today are Jonathan Goethals, Jose Rodriguez
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Managing Producer is Joe Crawford
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.
For WFHB, this is Scott Weddle.

Eco Report – September 18, 2014


In today’s EcoReport feature, the latest on Monroe County’s effort to implement a materials recovery facility, or MURF.

In a 4-3 vote, the Monroe County Solid Waste Management District board approved a 2015 budget with funds appropriated for a clean stream materials recovery facility Thursday evening, August 14. The facility would not be dual-stream, meaning it would only process “clean” recyclables like glass, aluminum and plastics. It would not sort recyclable material out of a co-mingled waste stream.

EcoReport is a weekly program providing independent media coverage of environmental and ecological issues with a focus on local, state and regional people, issues, and events in order to foster open discussion of human relationships with nature and the Earth and to encourage you to take personal responsibility for the world in which we live. Each program features timely eco-related headline news, a feature interview or event recording, and a calendar of events of interest to the environmentally conscious.

Today’s Anchors: Dan Young and Kelly Miller
This week’s news stories were written by Joe Crawford, Linda Greene, Norm Holy, and David Murphy. This week’s feature was engineered by Alycin Bektesh   .
Our broadcast engineer is Dan Withered. Producers for EcoReport are Stephanie Stewart, Dan Young,  Kelly Miller. Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Bloomingfoods Employees continue Efforts to Organize Union


Bloomingfoods employees are hoping and expecting their managers to remain neutral during the effort to organize into a union. Last week, the Daily Local News reported on indications that workers at the retail grocery co-operative were trying to unionize. During that report we conveyed some parts of our conversation with Cindy Beaux -lay, a former employee of Bloomingfoods, about working conditions and labor-management relations at the organization. She mentioned that there had been two prior unsuccessful attempts by employees to organize and that she was not surprised that another effort is now underway. Yesterday, we spoke to, Kaisa Goodman, a member of the worker organizing committee who confirmed that she and others had scheduled a meeting later in the day with Scott Bardette, an organizer with Local 700 of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. Bardette confirmed by phone this morning that he had met with some of the workers and was meeting again today with others. He then went on to talk about the position that the owner-members and the management would take during the union drive…

Play audio for more.


Bloomington Beware! – Donnelly Report


Sen. Joe Donnelly released a pretty frightening report on how Americans over 50 are particularly juicy targets for swindlers. Help spread the word to reverse this trend and keep our parents and grandparents safe!

Indiana Politicians Resist New EPA Regulations Despite Rising Carbon Announcements

Though CO 2 emissions in the atmosphere continue to rise, Indiana’s senior politicians are working hard to resist any carbon restrictions by the environmental protection agency. Last week, the World Meteorological Organization released findings that the level of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere rose at a record-shattering pace last year. The scientists from this U.N. advisory body also expressed surprise at their findings and fear of the consequent acceleration of global warming and attendant climate change. The report went on to note that concentrations of nearly all the major greenhouse gases reached historic highs in 2013, reflecting ever-rising emissions from automobiles and smokestacks but also a diminishing ability of the world’s oceans and plant life to soak up the excess carbon put into the atmosphere by humans.

Also last week, Indiana Governor Pence released a letter that he signed, along with 14 other state governors, addressed to President Obama asking him to veto new green house gas regulations proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency. These measures would reduce the permitted amount of green-house gas emissions from power plants. They are specially focused on coal burning plants which produce more CO2 than any other fuels. In order to comply, most older coal plants would have to undergo major upgrades, switch to cleaner fuels, or shut down. Governor Pence also dispatched Tom Easterley, the Commissioner of Indiana’s Department of Environmental Management, to tell the Subcommittee on Energy and Power of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Energy and Commerce that the new EPA regulations would, qoute, cause significant harm to Hoosiers without providing any measurable offsetting benefits.

Meanwhile, Indiana’s Democratic Senator Joe Donnelly and Republican Senator Dan Coates, along with 50 other senators, published letters to similar affect. The Senators’ requested a 60-day extension of the public comment period on the EPA’s proposed rule. This extension would be on top of the current 120 day comment period. Senator Donnelly’s announcement states that this extension is, “critical to ensure that state regulatory agencies and other stakeholders have adequate time to fully analyze and comment on the proposal.” Senator Coates’ announcement is more direct, stating that the proposed rules will, “restructure our entire electricity sector, kill reliable coal power and raise energy prices.” In response to the bipartisan petitions the Obama administration added another 45 days of comment period. Meanwhile, global climate scientists think that the world’s oceans have reached their capacity to absorb carbon, which means that levels in the atmosphere will increase at an even faster pace.

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