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Daily Local News – February 17, 2014

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Senate passes HJR3, Bloomington city staff recently discovered a long-standing restaurant building is located partly in land reserved for a public street, At a meeting February 9th, the Ellettsville Plan Commission discussed the potential for allowing town residents to raise chickens, The Chamber’s Franklin Initiative Educator of the Year Award Ceremony takes place this Wednesday, The Working Poor Families Project recently released a report addressing the needs of low-income working mothers, and suggested reforms to help their economic stability, The league of women’s voters is hosting an information session on Genetically Modified Organisms and the food supply this week.

FEATURE
Future Uncertain in Matlock Heights Neighborhood
This Wednesday the Bloomington City Council is scheduled to vote on whether to restrict future development in a neighborhood on the north side of the city. Many residents of the Matlock Heights neighborhood have asked for designation as a conservation district, which would probably keep out new student-oriented apartments or certain commercial businesses. The process has been underway since 2010 and it has support from many residents and most of the Council. But a legal issue that has come to light in recent months raises questions about the future of the district. WFHB Assistant News Director Joe Crawford brings us that story for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

ACTIVATE!
Cyrilla Helm of the Foundation for the Monroe County Community Schools talks about the foundation’s mission as well as upcoming volunteer programs and fundraising events, including Drop the Puck on March 1st, 2014.

CREDITS
Anchors: Maria McKinley, Doug Storm
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy, Olivia DeWeese, and Chelsea Hardy,
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Joe Crawford.
Activate! is produced by Jennifer Whitaker,
Our engineer today is Chris Martin,
Editor is Drew Daudelin, Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh.

HJR-3 Update

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Today, the Indiana Senate had its final vote on House Joint Resolution 3, the same-sex marriage ban. The Senate was voting on a version of the bill as amended by the lower house. A vote in favor of HJR-3 would effectively suspend the attempt to put a ban on same-sex marriage before voters on this fall’s ballot. A vote against the bill would defeat it. Either way the issue will be suspended until another legislator might propose something similar. Most senators spoke against the same sex marriage ban as a civil rights issue. One of these was local Democratic Senator Mark Stoops.

“When I first started hearing about this discussion at the state house, obviously I wasn’t a legislator at the time,” said Stoops. “But my first thought wasn’t just that ‘oh, this is going to be embarrassing for the state, it puts us in the spotlight’. It’s not the fact that we’re going to lose out on economic development because people aren’t going to want to come here. It seemed to me that the main issue with a resolution like this is basic civil rights.”

Senator Stoops went on to explain how placing a ban on same-sex marriage in the state constitution would entrench discrimination in what should be a rights document:

“I mean, we all have friends, co-workers, and family that we know are gay. Are we as legislators, and are you as senators, going to look at those friends and those co-workers and those family members and say, ‘With this vote, I am saying I’m a better person than you, I am more moral than you, and I’m more deserving of basic civil rights’? Because if you support this amendment, that’s exactly what you’re going to be saying.”

Another legislator, Democratic Senator Greg Taylor from District 33 in Central Indiana, drew parallels with prohibitions on interracial marriage.

“Nineteen sixty-seven in Indiana,” began Taylor,  “I met a couple, a friend of mine’s mom and dad, the first interracial couple to be married in the state of Indiana. You want to know why? Because it was illegal. That was supposed to protect the institution of marriage.”

He then talked about how such prohibitions would have affected him personally:

“Nineteen ninety-nine, I had the opportunity on May 15, 1999 – I hope my wife remembers I said that because I remember our anniversary date – to marry my wife. She happens to be caucasian. Folks, times change. Times will always change. I love my wife to death. I don’t care what culture she has, I don’t care what race she has. Can you believe that there was a time in this state when me and my wife couldn’t be married? Now we sit here with this issue.”

Shortly after his speech to the Senate, the majority voted for the amended version of HJR-3. Despite voting for legislation to discriminate against same-sex couples, this vote makes makes it impossible to place a referendum on the 2014 ballot for voters to constitutionally entrench the same-sex ban. However, it does not preclude attempts by state legislators to attempt to enact such a ban in the future. While Indiana has been debated such discriminatory legislation, other states and the federal government have been moving to permit same sex marriage and extend the benefits of marriage to these couples. While the courts have taken the lead in striking down discriminatory laws and regulations at both levels of government, legislators have stopped trying to resist the tide in what has become the civil rights issue the age. The pressure of public opinion and organization interest in favor of expanding marriage rights is forcing governments here and abroad to either resist calls to legalize sexual discrimination or revisit such laws already passed.

 

Daily Local News – February 14th, 2014

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Indiana University basketball player Hanner Mosquera-Perea  was booked into Monroe County Jail last night on OWI charges; The Affordable Care Act Volunteers of Monroe County will host the Health Care Insurance Fair tomorrow at the Monroe County Public Library; Bloomington’s Animal Shelter has released their 2013 year-end statistics; The Bloomington City Council showed support February 12th for new rules restricting development in the Matlock Heights Neighborhood on the north side of town.

FEATURE
Scientist Ralph Keeling Talks Climate Change
Climate change scientist Ralph Keeling visits Bloomington next week to give a presentation at Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Working with climate change and atmospheric science since the 1980′s, Keeling has been at the forefront of modern climate change research. WFHB correspondent Casey Kuhn spoke with Keeling about the upcoming talk, his current research, and his take on the future of climate change for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

CREDITS
Today’s headlines were written by Sierra Gardner and Lindsey Wright,
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Casey Kuhn
Volunteer Connection is produced by Wanda Krieger, in partnership with the city of Bloomington Volunteer Network.
Our engineer today is Nick Tumino,
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Editor is Drew Daudelin,
Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh.

 

Daily Local News – February 13, 2014

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A second reading of House Joint Resolution 3 on the Senate floor today was without incident;United Way of Monroe County and the Financial Stability Alliance for South Central Indiana and partners have launched the Free Community Tax Service for this year in Monroe and Owen counties;John D. Graham, dean of the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University and former senior official in President George W. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget, testified on Tuesday in support of a bill that prohibits the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, from using what backers of the legislation call ‘secret science.’

FEATURE
Indiana Congressional Representative Todd Young has authored a bill hoping to repel the Affordable Care Act Provision, which states that a thirty-hour work week is full time. The bill, called the “Save American Workers Act,” passed through the Ways and Means Committee last week. The bill is receiving bi-partisan support, and currently has six Democratic co-sponsors. Senator Susan Collins is pursuing a similar measure in the senate, which includes Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly as a Democratic co-sponsor. WFHB correspondent Lauren Glapa spoke with Representative Young about the bill for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

VOICES IN THE STREET
Our weekly public opinion feature Voices in the Street asks YOU about Valentines Day.

CREDITS
Anchors: Carolyn VandeWiele, Scott Weddle
Today’s headlines were written by Alycin Bektesh, Drew Dadelin, Jalisa Ransom, and Ally Tsimekles.
Our feature was produced by Lauren Glapa.
Voices in the Street was produced by Kelly Wherley,
Our engineer was Sarah Hettrick.
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Editor is Drew Daudelin,
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – February 12, 2014

The state legislature is still dealing with legislation to place a ban on same-sex marriage in the state constitution; Senate Bill 212 was approved by the Indiana Senate in Indianapolis on Monday; The Bloomington Utilities Service Board voted Monday to approve a measure to protect city sewer lines from a deal struck by local sewer districts; With the constant change in winter weather, the demand for propane has been on the rise.

FEATURE
Planned Parenthood Hosts “Cupcakes and Condoms”
Every year, twenty million STDs and more than three million unintended pregnancies occur in the United States. To raise awareness about protecting sexual health, Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky hosted “Cupcakes and Condoms” at Indiana University today. This was the first time the organization hosted the free event, which featured stations like Touch & Feel, How to Determine Condom Size, a condom valentines craft station, and more. Correspondent Daion Morton went on location to bring us today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

BLOOMINGTON BEWARE!
Emails that DON’T come from PayPal, or a Funeral Home, are the latest creative ways scammers are trying to keep you from hitting the “delete” key. If they weren’t so dangerous, they’d be pretty funny!

CREDITS
Anchors: Cathi Norton, Kelly Wherley
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy, Daion (Day-on) Morton, and Ally Tsimekles (Chim-uh-kliss),
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, in partnership with Community Access Television services.
Bloomington Beware was produced by Richard Fish with correspondent Andrew Huddleston,
Ilze Akerbergs produced our feature, with correspondent Daion Morton.
Our engineer today is Jim Lang,
Editor is Drew Daudelin,
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – February 10, 2014

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Phone users in Southern Indiana should receive notices this month from their service providers, concerning the introduction of a new area code for the region and changes in phone dialing protocol that will accompany the change; The deadline to sign up for healthcare insurance under the Affordable Care
Act is March 31st; Duke Energy, the state’s largest electricity supplier, is seeking more power from the sun; The Monroe County Board of Zoning Appeals voted February 5th to deny a homeowner’s request to build a second story onto his cabin north of Lake Lemon.

FEATURE
Bill Passes Indiana House to Bring Accountability to DOC
The Indiana state prison system has made headlines several times in recent years for issues related to treatment of inmates. In 2012, a federal judge ruled the Department of Corrections violated the Constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment when it put mentally ill prisoners in isolation. That same year a 26-year-old first-time drug offender died due to what her family’s attorneys now say was poor health care from the Department. And last month inmates at the Westville Correctional Facility went on a hunger strike after cutbacks to their meal programs, which inmates said posed health risks. Now Peggy Mayfield, a Republican state representative whose district stretches from the west side of Bloomington into Morgan County, has introduced a bill she says would bring more accountability to the Department of Corrections. The bill passed the House and is scheduled for a hearing in the Senate tomorrow. WFHB Assistant News Director Joe Crawford spoke with Mayfield about the bill for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

ACTIVATE!
Linda Stines, secretary for the Board of Directors of the Monroe County History Center, gives a preview of upcoming exhibitions in February and talks about the History Center gala later in the month.

CREDITS
Anchors: Ally Tsimekles, Doug Storm
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy, Mike Glab, and Ally Tsimekles
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Joe Crawford.
Activate! is produced by Jennifer Whitaker,
Our engineer  is Chris Martin,
Our Editor is Drew Daudelin,
Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – February 7th, 2014

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The Deputy Director of Indiana Civil Rights Commission, Akia Haynes, announced yesterday that there is probable cause that Indiana University Health racially discriminated a former employee; The night manager at a Bloomington laundromat told the City Council that people experiencing homelessness are increasingly trying to spend the night at the business; Yesterday 13 Indiana businesses added their names to the “Employers for Freedom” coalition; A nationwide propane shortage is hitting Indiana hard during this year’s severe winter.

FEATURE
Free Tax Help From IU Law Students
Doing your taxes isn’t always straightforward, and it can be even more confusing for foreign students or someone whose first language isn’t English. Indiana University’s Maurer Law School and Kelley School of Business offer a free program for tax assistance, called VITA (VYE-tuh), specialized for those who are not from this country and are unfamiliar with the tax code. WFHB correspondent Casey Kuhn talked to Charles Gray, one of the program directors, for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

VOLUNTEER CONNECTION
Local organizations scout the listening area for service help on Volunteer Connection, linking YOU to current volunteer opportunities in our community.

CREDITS
Anchors: Helen Harrell, Chris Martin
Today’s headlines were written by Lyndsey Wright, Neal Earley, and Mike Glab
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Adam Riechle, along with Correspondent Casey Kuhn
Volunteer Connection is produced by Emma Ohland, in partnership with the city of Bloomington Volunteer Network.
Our engineer is Nick Tumino,
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – Febuary 6, 2014

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State legislators representing the Monroe County area gave their views on more than dozen pieces of proposed legislation at a forum last Saturday; The City of Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department has opened registration for residents to rent garden plots in the Willie Streeter Community Gardens and the Butler Park Community Gardens; Senator Brent Steele’s proposal to amend Indiana’s constitution to guarantee residents the right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife passed on a forty-three to four vote by the full Senate on Monday; The City of Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department is looking for individuals to fill two Special Member seats to serve two-year terms on the Environmental Resources Advisory Council, or ERAC; This weekend in local sports: Tomorrow the Indiana University Men’s Tennis team plays Xavier at 10 am and Western Michigan at 3pm.

FEATURE
ACLU Challenges Indiana War Memorial Commission to Allow Protests without Permit
Until this week, in order to protest on Monument Circle in Indianapolis or other monuments controlled by the Indiana War Memorial Commission, citizens needed to contact the commission and acquire a special permit to protest. The ACLU found this policy to be a violation of citizens’ First Amendment rights, and this week the U.S. court of appeals issued an injunction that stops the commission from enforcing the permit policy. Correspondent Lauren Glapa has the report for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

VOICES IN THE STREET
This week on the Voices in the Street:  “Black History Month: African-American Heroes”

February is Black History Month, which in Bloomington means a full slate of public forums and celebrations honoring the cultural legacy of African-Americans in Bloomington and beyond. As part of our coverage of Black History Month, we hit the streets to ask local residents about African-Americans
who inspire you. So Bloomington, tell us about your black heroes.

CREDITS
Anchors: Carolyn VandeWiele, Jalisa Ransom
Today’s headlines were written by Jalisa Ransom, Mike Glab, and Dani (DAN-ee) Aleksa, along with
Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Sarah Hetrick, with correspondent Lauren Glapa.
Our engineer today is Sarah Hetrick.
Editor is Drew Daudelin, Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – February 5, 2013

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Emergency Management Director James Commerford announced an easement to “yellow” this afternoon; The City of Bloomington is seeking feedback from the public on a new update to its ADA Transition Plan; The Indiana office of utility consumer counselor is accepting public comment regarding a Vectren Energy request to increase utility rates for improvements in the transmission and storage of natural gas in Indiana.

FEATURE
Todd Young has thrown his hat into the ring for re-election to Indiana District 9 in the federal House of Representatives. Correspondent David Murphy spoke with Representative Young to ask him about his upcoming election campaign. He talked about potential challengers to his nomination for the Republican Party ticket in District 9 – which covers most of south-eastern Indiana including greater Bloomington – as well as his campaign platform. The issues he focused on included incentivizing job creation and work, proposals for reforming the financing, operation, and authority of the federal government, promoting non-governmental delivery of social services, and his criticism of Obamacare. We bring you that conversation now for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

BLOOMINGTON BEWARE
Our weekly consumer watchdog segment Bloomington Beware!

CREDITS
Anchors: Cathi Norton, Kelly Wherley
Today’s headlines were written by Alycin Bektesh and Drew Daudelin,
Bloomington Beware was produced by Richard Fish,
Adam Reichle produced our feature.
Editor is Drew Daudelin,
Engineer and Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – February 4, 2014

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The latest forecast from the Indianapolis office of the National Weather Service predicts that between one to two inches of snow and freezing rain will accumulate in south-central Indiana by midnight; Last Tuesday the Monroe County Council debated how it should appoint members to local boards and commissions; The Bloomington Board of Parks Commissioners gave permission last week for a new four-story building to use city property right next to the B-Line Trail, north of Kirkwood Avenue.

FEATURE
Demonstrators holding signs reading “No KXL” and holding model wind turbines held a rally on the courthouse square yesterday evening, as part of a nationwide demonstration against the Keystone XL pipeline. Jack Brubaker, the local contact for the nationwide resistance group, introduced speaker Rabbi Brian Besser to speak about the power of many voices coming together to form a resistance, and encouraged those present to write to the State Department, which is taking public comment now that their latest review of the construction project has been released. WFHB News Director Alycin Bektesh was on hand to bring us this report for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

INS AND OUTS OF MONEY
Coming up next–the Monroe County Public Library has over four hundred personal finance books to help you with budgeting, investing, saving, and retiring. Learn how to find the right book for you and discover some of the most popular financial authors, for WFHB’s weekly financial segment The Ins and Outs of Money.

CREDITS
Anchors: Hondo Thompson, Alycin Bektesh
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy,
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our feature was produced by Alycin Bektesh.
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.
Editor and engineer is Drew Daudelin,
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

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