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Corporate Office Amendment

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Upper-story corporate offices won’t have to comply with one of Bloomington’s newest rules. The City Council passed an amendment last week excluding those offices from its ordinance governing standardized businesses. The Council passed that ordinance in June. It allows the city to regulate the design of new chain restaurants and chain stores downtown. Tom Micuda, the city’s planning director, suggested changing the definition of standardized business to exempt the offices. The amendment comes at the urging of at least two prominent businesses downtown. Dave Harstad, the owner of Summit Realty and a member of the city’s Historic Preservation Commission, was the first to raise the issue in June. And Micuda said he also heard from CFC Properties, which is part of the Cook Group.

The Bloomington Chamber of Commerce opposed the standardized business ordinance when it was first proposed earlier this year. At that time the proposed rule would have allowed city officials to refuse permits to chain businesses in order to prevent an over-concentration of chains downtown. But the Council stripped that provision. The final version only regulates design of the businesses. The Chamber now supports the ordinance. Larry Jacobs, a spokesman for the Chamber, thanked the Council for working with local businesspeople on the most recent amendment and the Council later voted unanimously to approve the exemption for upper-story offices.

Larry Wilson Addresses County’s Plans For Urban Enterprise Zone

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Jackson Creek Middle School is not in Bloomington. Neither is the Bloomington Country Club, or the new Walmart location. These and other major players to Bloomington’s economy are all located in the county-controlled Urban Enterprise Zone. Tomorrow evening there will be a public open house regarding the county’s plans for this area. To find out more, WFHB News Director Alycin Bektesh spoke with Larry Wilson, Director of Planning for Monroe  County for today’s community report.

Daily Local News – September 17, 2014

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Eli Lilly yesterday announced a partnership with U. K. drug maker AstraZeneca to develop and commercialize a potential new drug for Alzheimer’s; Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller joined collegues in thirty-seven states urging the FCC to allow more extensive use of call blocking technologies; The Alzheimer’s Association raised more than $55,000 this past Saturday in Monroe County with its Walk to End Alzheimer’s at Bryan Park; Though CO 2 emissions in the atmosphere continue to rise, Indiana’s senior politicians are work hard to resist any carbon restrictions by the environmental protection agency; Local schools and utilities are slowly becoming involved in the effort to win a nationwide energy conservation competition; Upper-story corporate offices won’t have to comply with one of Bloomington’s newest rules

FEATURE
Jackson Creek Middle School is not in Bloomington. Neither is the Bloomington Country Club, or the new Walmart location. These and other major players to Bloomington’s economy are all located in the county-controlled Urban Enterprise Zone. Tomorrow evening there will be a public open house regarding the county’s plans for this area. To find out more, WFHB News Director Alycin Bektesh spoke with Larry Wilson, Director of Planning for Monroe County for today’s community report.

BLOOMINGTON BEWARE!
Our weekly consumer watchdog segment.

CREDITS
Anchors: Kelly Wherley, Cathi Norton
Today’s headlines were written by Susan Northleaf
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, in partnership with Community Access Television services.
Bloomington Beware was produced by Richard Fish,
Our engineer today is Jim Lang,
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Managing Producer is Joe Crafword
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh.

Daily Local News – September 16, 2014

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The national debate about militarized police forces continues as awareness grows about local campus police acquiring surplus military gear; Same sex couples in Indiana are still not able to marry, at least until the Supreme Court addresses the case later this month; Last Thursday, the Board of Director’s of Jill’s House voted to shut the organization down; Free furnace inspections, cleanings and repair will be offered on “Bring the Heat Day,” October 11th through a volunteer partnership between Bloomington’s Housing and Neighborhood Development Department and the Heating and Air Conditioning Alliance of Indiana; Early and absentee voting hours for Monroe County residents will begin on Tuesday, October 7th at the Election Center, 401 West Seventh Street in Bloomington; More than fifteen months after the issue first surfaced, Interstate 69 construction is still damaging waterways in Monroe County; Bloomingfoods employees are hoping and expecting their managers to remain neutral during the effort to organize into a union; Pawn shops in Ellettsville now have to send their sales data to the Town police at the same time they provide it to a nationwide law enforcement database.

CREDITS
Anchors: Casey Kuhn, Chris Martin
Today’s headlines were written by Cathi Norton, David Murphy,
And Danielle Flum
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services.
Our board engineer is Carissa Barrett
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes.
Managing Producer is Joe Crawford
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh

Activate! – Brown Co Humane/Pets Alive: Ingrid Skoog

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Ingrid Skoog, animal lover and long time volunteer with both Brown County Humane and Pets Alive!, talks about the importance of plugging into the community through your passion and the wonder of seeing your service bring results. Also, more volunteer opportunities to use teaching skills here in Bloomington from the Volunteer Network.

Links:
Brown County Humane
Pets Alive Kennel Care
Brown County Humane Society Cat Care at Petco
Run for the Animals 2014

Interchange – Indiana Moral Mondays

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Host Doug Storm is joined by William Morris and Joe Varga to discuss the genesis of the Moral Mondays Movement in North Carolina and how it has begun to form a broad coalition here in Indiana.

A Mother Jones article from April, 2014 describes the impetus for Moral Mondays as being political action against a Republican agenda in North Carolina. The Republicans ”who in November 2012 took control of the state Legislature and the governor’s mansion for the first time in more than a century. Among their top priorities—along with blocking Medicaid expansion and cutting unemployment benefits and higher-education spending—was pushing through a raft of changes to election laws, including reducing the number of early voting days, ending same-day voter registration, and requiring ID at the polls.”

But perhaps deeper than this “fusion politics” is an engagement with an ethics of care.

The Indiana Moral Mondays Mission Statement:

We, the people, coalitions and faith communities of Indiana hereby form Indiana Moral Mondays Movement in order to promote a just society in which every person is valued, and resources are used for the common good.

In doing so, we seek to embrace the moral values and the enduring qualities of love found in the secular and spiritual communities from which we come.

Find out about this weekend’s event in Indianapolis, “Forward Together with Reverend Dr. William Barber II”  at the group’s website, Indiana Moral Mondays.

Guests:
William Morris is an attorney with Indiana Legal Services where he works on low-income housing and homelessness prevention. Prior to that he was a civil rights lawyer for a dozen years in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Morris is a member of the Indiana Moral Mondays Steering Committee.

Joe Varga is an Assistant Professor of Labor Studies at Indiana University. He is a former Teamster shop steward and long time labor activist, having worked for the IBEW and the New York State Working Families Party. He is currently working on a project detailing the spatial history of de-industrialization in Southern Indiana. Joe is also active in Jobs with Justice, and numerous other activist causes.

Credits:

Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Board Engineer: Jonathan Richardson
Executive Producer: Alycin Bektesh

Ellettsville Pawn Shops must Send Sales Data to Town Police

Pawn shops in Ellettsville now have to send their sales data to the Town police at the same time they provide it to a nationwide law enforcement database. The Town Council passed second-hand dealer regulations late last year. Afterwards, there was dispute about how quickly businesses must report certain information. Town attorney Darla Brown proposed an amendment to the new ordinance September 8th. Similar rules apply to stores that buy and sell valuable metals. Last December the Council passed a law forcing the shops to report their sales to a private company that shares information with police across the country. The goal is to help solve cases of theft. But some residents worry sharing the data could compromise the privacy of customers.

I-69 Construction continues to Damage Waterways

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More than fifteen months after the issue first surfaced, Interstate 69 construction is still damaging waterways in Monroe County. That’s according to members of the Bloomington/Monroe County Metropolitan Planning Organization’s policy committee. At a meeting September 12th, Committee member Scott Wells showed photos of brown tap water and streams contaminated with sediment. Wells said local officials need to keep pressure on the state Department of Transportation…

Play audio for more.

Early and Absentee Voting for Monroe County Residents begins October 7th

Early and absentee voting hours for Monroe County residents will begin on Tuesday, October 7th at the Election Center, 401 West Seventh Street in Bloomington. Ruth Hickman, Monroe County Election Supervisor announce the office will be open Tuesdays through Fridays from 8:30-6:00 p.m. with times increased after October 24th to accommodate voters. A public test of electronic and ballot voting equipment will be held next Tuesday at 9am in the Monroe County Election Center.

“Bring the Heat Day” Offers Free Furnace Inspections, Cleanings and Repair

Free furnace inspections, cleanings and repair will be offered on “Bring the Heat Day,” October 11th through a volunteer partnership between Bloomington’s Housing and Neighborhood Development Department and the Heating and Air Conditioning Alliance of Indiana. From 8:00 a.m. until noon “Bring the Heat Day” volunteers will supply resources to conduct up to fifty furnace inspections and repairs for owner-occupied, gas furnace residents of Monroe County. The day is designed to raise awareness for the life-saving importance of proper furnace maintenance. Applications for “Bring the Heat” are available at 401 N. Morton St., Suite 130 and can be picked up or returned Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. The application deadline is September 26th.

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