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Local Resident Offers Perspective on Proprosed Rezoning Plans


The company, Hoosier Energy, has found itself in conflict with neighbors in a rural community north of Bloomington. Last year the electric utilities and services provider moved out of its headquarters at Ellis Road and State Road 37. Now the company wants to sell the land. It has an offer from Weddle Brothers Construction, but in order to sell the property, Hoosier Energy needs to change from public zoning to private zoning. Hoosier Energy has now petitioned to rezone the land from rural residential to heavy industrial use to accommodate the sale. However, the land is as close to 100 feet away from residential neighborhood housing that will be affected by the change. Correspondent Kara Tullman spoke with neighbor Larry Barber to get a local resident’s perspective.

Bloomingfoods Responds to New Business Climate


Issues at Bloomington’s cooperative grocery chain have increasingly been making local headlines in recent months. Earlier this year, the original Bloomingfoods location on Kirkwood Avenue closed indefinitely. In April, a group of co-op members petitioned for a financial audit of the organization, which they said was having money troubles. Then, earlier this month, General Manager George Huntington resigned. Eighteen middle level managers have also been laid off. Last week the co-op announced a 20 percent decrease in overall coop sales and there is talk of lower level staff cuts. On Friday, WFHB correspondent Kara Tullman spoke with the President of the Bloomingfoods Board of Directors, Caroline (care-o-line) Beebe (BEE-BEE). We bring you that conversation for today’s WFHB community report.

An Afternoon of Direct Animation this Saturday


The local experimental media group, Burroughs Century Limited, is hosting an Afternoon of Direct Animation this Saturday. The event invites participants to draw designs onto sixteen millimeter film, and then see their art projected as a motion picture film. The event is free, however donations will help pay for the group’s Wounded Galaxy festival, taking place in October. The 5-day festival will bring guest lectures, film screenings, music shows, and more, hosted in venues throughout town. The festival will showcase local and visiting artists. Correspondent Kara Tullman spoke with IU Professor Joan Hawkins to get a greater understanding of the festival and the Burroughs Century Group.

Senator Coats Criticizes Defense Contractors In His Waste of the Week Speech


This week the United States Senate is debating a proposed six-hundred-twelve-billion-dollar budget for the Department of Defense. Speaking before the Senate today, Senator Dan Coats of Indiana took on one particular section of the military budget as he gave his regular Waste of the Week speech. Coats criticized wasteful defense contractors, particularly one company that has recently been accused of misspending millions of dollars in Afghanistan. Coats does not mention the contractor  by name. But a report from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction indicates the alleged violator is the Imperatis Corporation, based in Arlington, Virginia. As of 2012, the company had more than a billion dollars worth of contracts with the American military. We bring you a portion of Coats’ speech now, in this WFHB report.

That was U.S. Senator Dan Coats of Indiana speaking today on the Senate floor. Coats has announced he will retire at the end of his term in 2016. Several Republicans and Democrats have already begun to campaign for the position.

“I Need Help” – Voices of Kirkwood


Over the past week, the owners of Nick’s English Hut in Bloomington have led a group of businesses in downtown Bloomington voicing concern about crime along Kirkwood Avenue. The issue sparked controversy on social media after Nick’s co-owner Susan Bright referred to “bum commerce” in the area. At a meeting at Nick’s last Wednesday, many businesspeople urged the police to arrest downtown visitors who use drugs or commit other petty crime in public. One of the main complaints has been about panhandling. For today’s WFHB community report, News Director Joe Crawford spoke with three residents who routinely ask for money along Kirkwood Avenue.

CLAAD Recommends Policies to Combat Prescription Drug Abuse


Recent legislation at the federal and state levels has been aimed at preventing prescription drug abuse and improving treatment for those addicted. But the Center for Lawful Access and Abuse Deterrence, whose mission is to do the same, believes more needs to be done. WFHB News correspondent Jordan Guskey looked into the Center’s 2015 national strategy update and how Indiana shapes up for today’s WFHB Community report.

A Blue Dot In a Sea of Red, Bloomington’s Liberal Attitudes Compared to the Rest of the State


Bloomington, and especially Indiana University, is often referred to — politically speaking — as a blue dot in a sea of red. A strong majority of voters here favor Democrats, in stark contrast to the rest of Indiana. Conservative media often accuse of universities such as IU of indoctrinating students to favor liberal causes. WFHB correspondent Kara Tullman  wanted to know how local youth, who often move here from conservative small towns, adopt viewpoints and values that differ than the majority of those in their hometowns. She brings us that story for today’s WFHB community report.

Professor publishes account of wrongful detainment


Indiana University Professor Christine Von Der Haar is back in the news after publishing a full account of her wrongful detainment in 2012. After settling her lawsuit against the federal government in April, Von Der Haar is ready for her story to be heard again. WFHB correspondent Ivy Bridges brings us that story.

Needle Exchange Program draws criticism from Indiana Prosecutors


Late last month, the Indiana Department of Health issued a declaration allowing the state’s first ever long-term needle exchange program. The program in Scott County is intended to slow the spread of HIV there. Needle exchanges have been outlawed in Indiana for decades. Many in state government, including Governor Mike Pence, have long opposed the programs. That changed somewhat earlier this year, when Pence approved a month-long needle exchange in Scott County to deal with the unprecedented HIV outbreak there. Now that the state legislature has passed a law allowing the program to stay in place for at least a year, there is still debate in Indiana over the use of needle exchanges. WFHB correspondent Kara Tullman has that story.

Spencer Pride’s Judi Epp discusses this Saturday’s Pride Festival


The 9th annual Spencer LBGTQI Pride Festival will take place this Saturday from 10 AM to 5 PM. This year’s theme is Color our World with Pride. The festival is held by the Spencer Pride group. Correspondent Kara Tullman spoke with the group’s director, Judi Epp, for this WFHB community report.

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