Local News

Lauren Chapman / IPB News

The U.S. Supreme Court ordered an appeals court to re-examine lawsuits involving two Indiana anti-abortion laws Thursday.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management

NORTHWEST INDIANA -
The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has issued an Air Quality Action Day and is forecasting high ozone levels for Friday, July 3rd in Northwest Indiana for Lake, Porter and LaPorte Counties and in North Central Indiana for St. Joseph and Elkhart Counties.

Sarah Bonick, Director of External Relations says IDEM encourages everyone to help reduce ozone while remaining safe during the COVID-19 health crisis.

Justin Hicks / IPB News

According to data released Thursday, Indiana had, by far, the largest spike in new claims for unemployment assistance in the country last week. The state says most of them are coming from foreign identity thieves trying to steal money.

Ken Lund / Flickr

The Environmental Protection Agency plans to end its policy relaxing penalties for some violations during the pandemic. In an EPA memo, the agency said as states reopen, they're reducing the restrictions that make it difficult for industrial companies to comply with environmental laws. 

Provided / IBA

The Indiana Broadcaster's Association provides the latest updates on coronavirus as it impacts Hoosiers.

Pixabay

COVID-19 has been “totally devastating” for some Hoosier fireworks companies. One company owner says his business needs help to survive – and a proposal from U.S. Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) could be the answer.

LAKE COUNTY - A Lake County Jail inmate who died June 20 suffered a medical emergency before he was taken to a Merrillville hospital.

The "Times" reports St. John police arrested Highland resident, 37 year-old Matthew Shank, shortly before midnight June 19 and had taken him to the Lake County Jail. He was cleared by medical staff and booked at about 12:45 a.m.

He experienced a medical emergency after he was booked.  He received emergency care from jail medical staff and was taken by ambulance to Methodist Southlake.

Lauren Chapman / IPB News

The state of Indiana is launching a public service campaign to urge Hoosiers to wear a mask when in public to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. 

Lauren Chapman / IPB News

Lawmakers approved several new education laws during the legislative session earlier this year, and many go into effect with the new fiscal year, July 1.

Lauren Chapman / IPB News

Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Indiana will largely press pause on its reopening plan instead of moving to the final phase this weekend.

Lauren Chapman / IPB News

The Indiana State Department of Health reported 21 additional confirmed deaths since Sunday, bringing the state’s total to 2,448. The state announced more than 45,000 total confirmed cases, with more than 484,000 Hoosiers tested.

Mark Leyva For Congress website

Today:  Mark Leyva, the Highland resident who is the Republican Party candidate for the First Congressional District seat currently held by Pete Visclosky, is on the program to talk about himself, his position on the issues in his campaign and how he is dealing with campaigning during the pandemic.  We also ask Lake County Surveyor and Plan Commission chairman Bill Emerson to explain the July 15th public hearing on an amended ordinance that, if approved, will set guidelnes for public meetings in the future for citizens to speak out about solar panel farms, if any are proposed for their area. A Chicago company is already interested in putting up a site in south Lake County.  And we we revisit our conversation with Valparaiso Mayor Matt Murphy about this weekend's Fourth of July celebrations in his city.

Sharon Jackson / Lakeshore Public Radio

CHESTERTON - The National Park Service made the announcement Monday that it's canceling it's Aviation Day program for 2020.  In addition, it is canceling all its major events through the fall.

Park Ranger and Public Information Officer Bruce Rowe for Indiana Dunes National Park explains.

New Laws Take Effect July 1

Jun 30, 2020
Lauren Chapman

The 2020 legislative session ended in March – but many of the major education and health care measures passed by the state legislature go into effect on Wednesday. 

Justin Hicks / IPB News

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created to help small businesses in response to the coronavirus is set to expire Tuesday. According to some advocates, most businesses owned by people of color did not get the chance to take full advantage of the program.

Lakeshore Public Radio

Today:  "Indiana Gaming Insight" creator and editor Ed Feigenbaum has an update on how Hoosier casinos, including the local ones, are progressing in their post-COVID-19 shutdown reopenings.  He also has the latest on sports betting, post-pandemic, and the recent "virtual" Indiana political party conventions.  Northwest Indiana immigration attorney Alfredo Estrada is also with us to talk about the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision supporting DACA and its impact on young people and their residency status in the Region.  We also bring you another conversation from The Welcome Project at Valparaiso University.

Rebecca Thiele / IPB News

Many Hoosiers who are unable to pay their energy bills won’t face shutoffs for another 45 days. On Monday, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission ordered some utilities to continue the moratorium on shutoffs through Aug. 14. 

PanoramaNOW

CHESTERTON- The National Park Service is canceling the annual Aviation Day Program this year at Indiana Dunes National Park, due to the difficulty in social distancing.

The program, offered the last two years at the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center in August, celebrates Octave Chanute’s pioneering glider flights in the dunes during the late 1890’s. His work played a major role in the development of the airplane by the Wright Brothers.  
In a statement the National Park Service says it hopes it can bring back the popular program in the summer of 2021.

NWI Times

Today: Barbara Quandt, the state director for NFIB, joins us to talk about how Hoosier businesses are recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.  She highlights some northwest Indiana firms on her comments.  Donna Catalano, the new community development director for the Legacy Foundation, tells us more about her new position and the South Shore Neighborhood Corp.  We also have comments about the impact of COVID-19 from Lake County health director Dr. Chandana Vavilala.  And State Senator Eddie Melton of Gary has the latest on the Indiana Black Legislative Caucus' efforts to promote its stance on police reform -- including some proposals that may come before the 2021 General Assembly.  

BMV Will Begin Charging Late Fees Again On July 1

Jun 29, 2020
Lauren Chapman / IPB News

The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles will begin charging late fees again July 1.

Late fees had been suspended the last few months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Justin Hicks / IPB News

The Indiana State Department of Health reported 33 additional confirmed deaths over the weekend, bringing the state’s total to 2,427. The state announced nearly 45,000 total confirmed cases, with more than 470,000 Hoosiers tested.

Hands-Free Driving Law Takes Effect July 1

Jun 29, 2020
Lauren Chapman / IPB News

Hoosiers can no longer use their cell phones while driving unless they’re hands-free, starting Wednesday.

Kyle Telechan, Post-Tribune

Today:  Indiana University Northwest economics Professor Micah Pollak talks about his major COVID-19 related project: almost daily entries in his personal Twitter account with data, observances and views on the impact of the pandemic on northwest Indiana.  Check it out here.   Joseph Pete with the "Times of Northwest Indiana" reviews his recent stories out in print and online, many of them as updates about the coronavirus' impact on local and regional business.  Stories include some projected casino layoffs and the latest unemployment report.  He also talks about a project to bring three new restaurants into a busy Schererville business corridor.

Courtesy of the Holcomb administration

Thousands of Hoosier renters facing eviction in the coming weeks might get a little help from the state.

Edgewater Health

Today:  Dr. Danita Johnson Hughes, the president and CEO at Edgewater Health, is with us to talk about the guest column she wrote for the "Post-Tribune" entitled "The Pandemic, The Police and Politics."    It is a column with her thoughts on the issues of  the coronavirus crisis, racial disparity, relations between minorities and police and the political conditions of the day.  Julie Wendorf, director of the Crown Point Community Library, joins us to talk about the reopening of the Crown Point and Winfield branches on June 15th when the governor's plan allowed it to happen.  The Lake County Public Library is going through the reopening process right now, with the Merrillville branch to reopen on Monday.  And Valparaiso Mayor Matt Murphy talks about his city's ongoing efforts toward equality with established organizations working with police and citizens, how the community's coping during the COViD-19 pandemic and the city's  big plans for the July 4th holidays.

Courtesy of Cummins

Indiana universities and companies will not be able to bring many skilled international professors and researchers to the state until 2021 due to an executive order from President Donald Trump designed to protect American jobs. 

Screenshot of Zoom call

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Woody Myers unveiled a criminal justice reform plan that mandates new training for police, shifts funding to social services and decriminalizes marijuana.

Seth Tackett / WTIU

The Indiana State Department of Health reported 27 additional confirmed deaths since Sunday, bringing the state’s total to 2,377. The state announced nearly 43,000 total confirmed cases, with more than 426,000 Hoosiers tested.

file photo

Today:   We revisit our conversations with Lake County Democratic Party chairman Jim Weiser and Republican Party chairman Dan Dernulc about the June 2nd primary election that was marked by the changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic:  the shift, for many, to vote-by-mail and how candidates had to focus more on social media instead of in-person campaigning.  "Post-Tribune" columnist Phil Potempa joins us to talk about the observance this week of the 1918 Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus train wreck on tracks between Gary and Hammond and the horrendous fire that led to 86 deaths and 127 injuries.  The victims, many of them unidentifiable because of their burns, were buried at "Showmen's Rest," in an Illinois cemetery.  The wreck happened on June 22nd, 1918.

FILE PHOTO: Jeanie Lindsay / IPB News

It’s safe to say there have been other things on Hoosiers’ minds than the environment these days. The COVID-19 pandemic has not only affected the health of Indiana residents, but also jobs and local economies. Meanwhile, people across the country are protesting acts of violence by police officers against black men and women. 

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