WFHB
Home > Tag Archives: community

Tag Archives: community

Aerial Photos of Bloomington Approved for Property Assessment

Play

The Monroe County Commission approved a $271,000 contract on February 21 with a company that plans to take aerial photographs of the entire County.

The company, Pictometry International Corporation, would fly over the area to take high-resolution pictures for the County Assessor’s office.

Assessor Judy Sharp said one way her staff uses images like these is to detect changes in properties, which can affect their assessed value and in turn their property taxes.

“This is the third time we’ve done this,” Sharp said, “We fly over every three years because Monroe County is such a fast-growing community. In three years, you have a lot of new product out there. This company can actually tell us the changes, good or bad, to a piece of property”

Sharp said the contract, which covers three years, includes a stipulation that prevents the public from accessing the photographs.

“It is strictly in the assessor’s office,” Sharp said, “The city police could use this, but it isn’t a tool just anyone use because it’s licensed. You can go online at our 39 degrees GIS website which does something very similar, but it isn’t what we use.”

The commission voted unanimously to approve the agreement.

Former Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennet Under Scrutiny For Questionable Tactics While In Office

Play

State Democrats are keeping the pressure on Indiana’s Inspector General as an investigation continues into former Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett’s actions while in office.

Yesterday, Tom LoBianco of the Associated Press reported that Bennett’s office had kept Republican party campaign contributor databases on Education Department computer servers.

The AP report also alleged that Bennett directed Education Department staffers to parse a campaign speech by Glenda Ritz, his opponent in last November’s election. If true, the actions would violate state election and ethics laws.

Indiana Democratic Party Chair John Zody wants answers.

“I think it’s important that Hoosiers have trust in their government and their elected officials,” Zody says, “There are all kinds of things going on in state government that raises questions. There have been a number of articles about Mr Bennet and how he operated in office. There was a definite lack of transparency when he was in office and now we’re seeing these details come out.”

Zody calls for a quicker and more thorough investigation into the charges against Bennett. He also asks that Indiana Inspector General David Thomas reveal more details about the investigation.

Bennett told the Associated Press that the databases were for his personal use, and that he hadn’t directed his staff to do political work while on the job.

Cindy Carrasco of the Inspector General’s office confirmed that Thomas is looking into Bennett’s actions, but added that the investigation is confidential.

These latest charges follow questions about Bennett’s actions in grading a charter school run by a prominent Republican campaign contributor.

In July, the Associated Press reported that Bennett allegedly alerted his staff that the performance grade of the Christel House Academy in Indianapolis was unacceptable. Christel House, owned by Republican donor Christel DeHaan, had earned a “C” grade for its performance during the 2011 – 2012 school year. After a series of e-mails had been sent by Bennett to various staffers referring to the problem of Christel House’s rating, its grade was raised to an “A”.

DeHaan had contributed $2.8 million to Republican campaigns from 1998 through last year’s elections, including $130,000 for Bennett’s campaigns.

Bennett left Indiana after he lost to Glenda Ritz in November.

He served as the Florida education commissioner after leaving office in January, but resigned last month after the emails were published.

The Council for Community Accessibility Accepts Nominees For Awards

Play

The City of Bloomington’s Council for Community Accessibility (CCA) is seeking nominees for the annual awards ceremony that will take place on October 29th.

This year the event will take place at Bell Trace, off of 10th Street,  and starts at 6:30, Special Projects Coordinator, Craig Brenner says. There will be a keynote speaker who served in Iraq and tragically lost both his legs.

“He’s a motivational speaker from the Indianapolis Colts and we are really looking forward to having him. After, we’ll have an awards ceremony,” Brenner says

The awards acknowledge organizations, individuals and businesses that help make Bloomington more accessible for individuals with disabilities

“The Council for Community Accessibility researches any nominations and vote,” Brenner says.

The CCA is a volunteer group that advocates for those who are disabled. It’s been around for over 20 years and meet at City Hall once a month, Brenner says.

They make sure the buildings in the city are accessible to people with disabilities, he says.

“They also address issues in the business community and serve as an educational group to make sure people know what to do to make their programs and buildings accessible,” Brenner says.

Nominations can be submitted at www.bloomington.in.gov/cca. The submission deadline is Oct 11 2013.

Scroll To Top