On October 13th a special forum was convened by Indiana University to educate the public about The recent Ebola outbreak in Liberia and to illuminate IU’s connections to that region. The forum centered on issues of public health and the physiology of the Ebola virus. Expert Panelists included Joshua Mugele, associate professor of clinical emergency medicine at the IU School of Medicine, Chad Priest, assistant dean for operations and community partnerships at the IU School of Nursing, Charles Reafsnyder, IU retired associate vice president for international affairs, and Ruth Stone, the Laura Bolton professor of folklore and ethnomusicology at IU Bloomington. The forum was recorded on location the Memorial Union in Bloomington by WFHB correspondents for Standing Room Only, on WFHB.
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Travelers on a number of roads in Monroe County should be aware that the I-69 Development Partners Team will create single-lane closures with flashing yellow arrows as efforts are made to verify the locations of existing utility facilities in preparation for future road construction. So far seven locations have been identified for inspection between November 10th and November 20th and during the hours from 9 AM to 3 PM. Drivers need to aware of work on That Road from State Rd. 37 to 1200 ft. east of State Rd. 37; on Tapp Rd from Danlyn Rd. to Deborah Drive; and on Maple Leaf Drive from the cul-de-sac to 200 ft. west of the cul-de-sac. Other closures include Oakleaf Drive from its cul-de-sac to 200 ft. west of the cul-de-sac; on Rex Grossman Blvd from Tapp Rd to Lake Drive; inTech Park Blvd from Tapp Road to Schamaltz Blvd; and finally on Barger Lane from Tapp Rd to 200 ft. North of Tapp Road. Definite dates for work at each location are not yet available. But the I-69 Development Partners Team, beyond these preliminary details, urges that drivers consider workers’ safety by moderating speeds and using caution in any single-lane closures that they encounter
Animal activists of nonprofit organization FARM, Farm Animal Rights Movement, are in Bloomington today through Friday as part of their national 10 billion lives tour; Local public schools have received their grades from the state and, while the criteria used by the state for this evaluation have been much criticized, the Monroe County Community School Corporation is quite pleased with the results; Tomorrow, beginning at 6pm the Indiana Utilities Regulation Committee will be accepting public comment regarding fee increases for infrastructure improvements; The Monroe County Public Library Board of Trustees recently appointed Marilyn Wood as library director effective February 2nd, 2015; The Indiana Bureau of Motor vehicles has created a new website for customers to verify excise tax refund eligibility; IU professor of Anthropology, Eduardo Brondizio, was one of 240 conservationists to sign a letter to the scientific journal Nature, calling for greater diversity in the global debate about conservation; This month Governor Pence appointed William McCarty of Monroe County to serve the remainder of an unexpired term on the Horse Racing Commission through 2017; The “U Bring Change 2 Mind” College Toolbox project kicks off Thursday evening at the IU Auditorium; Travelers on a number of roads in Monroe County should be aware that the I-69 Development Partners Team will create single-lane closures with flashing yellow arrows as efforts are made to verify the locations of existing utility facilities in preparation for future road construction.
Monroe County appears to be almost finished approving new zoning rules for rural areas. But questions still remain. We bring you that story for today’s WFHB community report.
The BBB has issued a warning about Ebay listings which take you to fake websites and steal your personal info. This could happen with most any online commercial site, and here’s how to spot the con and avoid it.
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The “U Bring Change 2 Mind” College Toolbox project kicks off Thursday evening at the IU Auditorium. Students and IU employees will have the chance to win giveaways and prizes, and at 7pm Chicago’s Improv Olympic comedy group will perform. Bring Change 2 Mind is actress Glenn Close’s anti-stigma campaign focused on mental health. U Bring Change 2 Mind is a project that has branched out from the organization. It’s an initiative geared toward college campuses that aims to bring students together to fight the stigma that surrounds mental health. This stigma often causes discrimination, which can negatively affect everyday things from relationships and employment to housing and medical care. U Bring Change 2 Mind aims to end the stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health through education. Conditions like depression, bipolar disorder and OCD are serious ailments that affect IU students. This initiative plans to spark a conversation on campus that will lead to understanding and increased sources of help for those afflicted.
The project includes competitions and contests as well as lectures and a course centering on mental illness, media and social change. The course will be available to IU students in the spring.
According to a press release from IU, the project has been in the works for a year. It began with a visit from actress Glenn Close and Pamela Harrington, the executive director of Bring Change 2 Mind. Close chose IU as the site of a pilot project. The plans developed at IU will be packaged and made available to other universities.
This month Governor Pence appointed William McCarty of Monroe County to serve the remainder of an unexpired term on the Horse Racing Commission through 2017. The Horse Racing Commission, according to its website, is an Indiana-sanctioned entity that monitors, both administratively and financially, pari-mutual wagering on horse races to ensure that they will be conducted with the highest standards of safety and integrity for the animals and the public wagering. This includes blood testing for illegal performance-enhancing drugs for both the horses and their jockeys. The IHRC works closely with such respected test facilities as the University of Kentucky Veterinary Diagnostic Clinic. The Commission, in addition to addressing concerns of breeding of animals, keeps track of revenues from horse racing both at local tracks on through the media. William McCarty, with a history of involvement with the Commission, will now be one of five Commissioners who have staggered terms of appointment.
IU professor of Anthropology, Eduardo Brondizio, was one of 240 conservationists to sign a letter to the scientific journal Nature, calling for greater diversity in the global debate about conservation. The letter was published last week. In the letter the point is made that the debate has become increasingly polarizing between those who argue that nature should be protected for its own sake, and those who argue that we must also save nature to help ourselves. The letter says that this situation is stifling communication, inhibiting funding and halting progress. An approach is proposed that accepts a unified and diverse conservation ethic; one that recognizes and accepts all values of nature and welcomes all philosophies justifying nature protection and restoration, from ethical to economic, and from aesthetic to utilitarian.
The signers write that much of the contention is intensified by the fact that the dispute is dominated by only a few voices, nearly all of them men’s. They call for a diversity of voices representing a wide range of ethnic, cultural and social perspectives, as well as gender balance.
The Indiana Bureau of Motor vehicles has created a new website for customers to verify excise tax refund eligibility. In the past some -citizens utilizing some BMV services were overcharged. In early October, 2014 the BMV began sending out claim forms to customers who were affected by this earlier Excise Tax ‘misclassification.” But it appears that some customers did not receive their claim form letters. Commissioner of the BMV Don Semis then announced on November 10th that the Bureau has created a website that allows customers to determine if they eligible for an Excise Tax Refund. This website allows Hoosiers not only to verify their refund eligibility but also print a form that includes mailing instructions. To avoid potential fraud, the BMV asks Hoosiers to access the refund eligibility page by visiting the website myBMV.com and check on the green “Check Your Excise Tax Refund Eligibility” icon on the right-hand side of the home page. Users will need to input either their Social Security number or their driver’s license number to check their eligibility. To date the BMV has received over 131,000 claim forms and processed over 92,700 of them, totaling refunds of $14.9 million dollars plus $1.2 million dollars in interest. Currently the BMV is processing claim forms about a week after they are received, with checks being issued approximately another week later.
The Monroe County Public Library Board of Trustees recently appointed Marilyn Wood as library director effective February 2nd, 2015. She will succeed Sara Laughlin who will retire at the end of this year after seven years as director. Wood is a native of Brown County, Indiana and holds both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Indiana University. She began her career in a variety of capacities in the Indiana University Library system. Prior to joining the Monroe County Public Library in June, 2012 as Associate Director, Wood worked at Harvard University during the years 2005-2012 as Associate Librarian of the Harvard College for Collection Management. An MCPL press release states she intends to continue the library’s efforts to seek various partnerships and contacts within the Bloomington community as well to offer job-embedded staff development to improve library services and keep up with 21st century versions of library and literacy skills.
Tomorrow, beginning at 6pm the Indiana Utilities Regulation Committee will be accepting public comment regarding fee increases for infrastructure improvements. IURC representatives will be at the Monroe County Convention Center to record sworn written and oral comments from the public. Duke Energy is proposing 1.87 billion dollars in updates, including advanced metering and communications devices, breaker and relay replacements, replacement of aging infrastructure and vegetation management. In order to pay for the improvements Duke would be increasing utility rates by about one percent a year over the next seven years. Various organizations and businesses have also filed testimony on this case, with detractors saying that ratepayers should not assume the costs of Duke’s upgrades, and that the proposed “smart meters” are more beneficial to the corporation than to residents.