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Truck on its Side Southbound I-65 in Lowell

dumptruck2
Traffic Advisory: Backups reported on I-65 in Lowell.  Crews are at the scene of a semi dump truck flipped onto its side, losing a load of dirt on southbound I-65 near the State Road 2 exit.  [Image/INDOT cams]...
 

Interview: Sheriff Discusses 3rd Jail Pod

DavidLain
Porter County officials are moving forward on getting the third pod at the county jail up and running to help relieve overcrowding. Porter County Commissioners have agreed to hire an engineering firm to evaluate what's needed physically to open that section of the jail. Last week the county council voted 4-to-3 against funds to pay for additional jailers to staff the pod, but Sheriff David Lain says it's a matter of determining where that money will come from on an ongoing basis. The jail on State Road 49 opened in 2002, but the third of its three pods has never been opened due to staffing constraints. Sheriff Lain says it's been a priority for him to see it open:
To hear our interview today with Sheriff Lain, visit News Audio on Demand here at our website. [File Photo/Region Newsmakers]...
 

Police Investigating Gary Shooting Death

Police in Gary are investigating a shooting death, the 42nd homicide recorded in the city this year. The Lake County Coroners office says 41-year-old Marlon Allen of East Chicago suffered multiple gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead in the 42-hundred block of Vermont Street in Gary shortly after 9-o'clock Wednesday night. ...
 

Officials Address Fights at Westville Correctional Facility

Authorities say fights broke out early Monday evening at the Westville Correctional Facility, and officials continue working on determining what prompted them. Public Information Officer John Schrader says a total of ten to twelve inmates were involved. "Monday evening we had basically a larger number of fights than normal, involving probably about ten to twelve offenders total in a number of housing units in one section of the facility," Schrader said. The facility has five large sections, Schrader said, and the other four are still operating normally and have been all along.  Schrader says one offender went to the infirmary at the facility, and there were no injuries to prison staff, and there was no destruction of any property. He says some offenders had just been moved around to different areas within that one unit, and starting at about 5:30 Monday evening, separate fights broke out as offenders were going to and back from the chow, or mess, hall.   Visits remain canceled at this time for the affected section of the facility. ...
 

Two Arrested in Hessville Cellphone Robberies

Hammond PD
Police in Hammond have arrested two suspects in connection with a string of cellphone robberies in Hessville over the weekend. Hammond Police Chief Brian Miller says Wednesday night around 5:15, two juveniles were robbed of their phones at gunpoint at 173rd and Grand. Hammond detectives aided by officers from the Northwest Indiana STOP Team stopped two 17-year-old Gary males at an apartment complex in the 45-hundred block of 23rd Court in Gary, and police say the stolen phones were recovered along with a gun allegedly used in the incident. Chief Miller says the two juveniles are believed to be responsible for four or five other robberies in Hammond and possibly others in East Chicago and Merrillville. More information was expected to be released today.

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Commissioners Move Toward Opening 3rd Pod

jailoverview
Porter County officials are moving forward on getting the third pod at the county jail up and running to help relieve overcrowding. Porter County Commissioners held a special meeting Wednesday and agreed to hire DLZ engineering to evaluate what's needed to open that section of the jail. Last week the county council voted 4-to-3 against funds to pay for additional jailers to staff the pod, but there's word the council is expected to revisit the request and resolve the issue by the time the final budget hearing happens later this month (Oct 22) The jail on State Road 49 opened in 2002, but the third of its three pods has never been opened due to staffing constraints. [Photo/PorterCounty Sheriffs Office]...
 

New Voter Forms Meant to End 'Hoarding and Dumping'

connie lawson
Secretary of State Lawson
The state has new voter registration forms meant to decrease voter fraud and end the “hoarding and dumping” of applications, according to Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson, who says the improved forms will create a “custody trail” . Lawson says in previous elections they've had forms submitted for Jimmy Johns and Mickey Mouse, and most of the time these applications are mixed in with legitimate ones collected by groups registering large numbers of voters then turned into the county voter registration offices just before the deadline. The new forms include a section for individuals who collect the applications to document their name and other info, and newly-registered voters will also receive a receipt with the name and address of the person who took “custody” of the application and when.
“By creating a custody trail, we are providing county clerks with the tools they need to stop fraudulent registrations that undermine the integrity of our election process,” said Secretary Lawson
If a person’s application is given to another person, but for whatever reason never arrives at a county voter registration office, Lawson says the changes will help the county assist that person in registering to vote. The additional information required by the new form can also help the county voter registration office identify any patterns of suspicious activity or clear violations of election law.
The new Indiana voter registration forms also remind groups and individuals who register voters of their own responsibility to protect the election process and prevent disenfranchisement of voters who have placed their trust in these groups or individuals. By putting their name on the application, individuals collecting voter registration forms will be more likely to review the application to ensure it is correctly filled out and filed in a timely manner, according to Lawson's office.
Individuals collecting voter registration applications who receive an application they believe to be false or fraudulent are now required to submit the application to the appropriate county election office with a statement sworn to under penalties of perjury, indicating why they believe the application to be fraudulent, to alert county officials that a violation of election law may have occurred. 
Also, beginning with next year’s election, all applications collected from another person must be turned into the county voter registration office or the Indiana Election Division no later than noon 10 days of receipt of the application or the deadline to submit applications under state law, whichever occurs first.
The changes in the voter registration process were enacted by the 2013 Indiana General Assembly as part of Senate Enrolled Act 519. The updated forms were approved by the bi-partisan Indiana Election Commission, with assistance from the bi-partisan Indiana Election Division under the guidance of co-directors Brad King and Trent Deckard. ...
 

UPDATE: Crash at State Road 49 and 600 North

Traffic-Advisory
Porter County Sheriffs Police are reporting no life-threatening injuries at this time in a two-vehicle crash that resulted in delays on northbound State Road 49 around 6-o'clock this morning. The collision occurred at the intersection of County Road 600 North, which is just north of Valparaiso. Vehicles were reportedly backed up for about six-miles, down to US 30....
 

Crash on State Road 49 North of Valparaiso

Traffic-Alert
Multiple emergency responders are on scene at a motor vehicle accident on the northbound side of State Road 49 at the intersection of County Road 600 North, which is just north of Valparaiso.  No other information is available at this hour.  We are getting reports of long backups in the area....
 

Company to Lead Strategic Planning for IN Schools Chosen

An out-of-state company was chosen today to advise the State Board of Education's strategic planning process over the next three years. Massachusetts-based Center of Educational Leadership and Technology's bid was chosen by the Board's panel over the Indiana Youth Institute, Indianapolis-based Thomas P. Miller Miller and Associates, and the National Association of State Boards of Education. A decision by the full State Board of Education to accept the company's goals takes place in February....
 

Gary Settles Lawsuit with Majestic Star Casinos

The City of Gary has settled a five-year old lawsuit with Majestic Star Casinos and a land trust and is expected to receive 13-point-five million dollars over the next 12 to 18 months. During a special meeting Tuesday, the city's Common Council approved the settlement resolution, which the city's attorney says was done to prevent further litigation. The agreement still needs to be signed by casino officials and approved by Gary's Redevelopment Commission. At issue was a local development agreement between the two over an access road that travels over the Wisconsin Central and Norfolk-Southern railroad lines. Majestic Casino thought Gary was in violation of the local development agreement, so they put the money owed into an escrow account. ...
   

Teen Arrested for Threatening to Shoot Students

portage pd
A Portage High School student was arrested today for intimidation and taken to the Juvenile Detention Center after a fellow student informed school officials the teen was talking about bringing a gun to school and shooting students who were “arrogant and self-righteous”. Portage Police say the student in question, a sophomore, was brought to the office and an inquiry revealed he was not in possession of any gun, but claimed access to one at home. Police reportedly searched the teen's bedroom and did not find a gun, but his parent's reported having a gun under lock and key and that the child does not have access to it. Police Chief Troy Williams commended the student who initially reported the threat, as well as the swift action taken by school officials, and urged parents to talk with their children with regards to the importance of reporting a threat they may hear and to also monitor their children for changes in behavior that warrant a concern. ...

   

Frontier's Portion of the 5 Points Project Ends Friday

frontier
Frontier Communications announced today they anticipated having their portion of the road project at the Five-Points in Valparaiso completed this Friday. Frontier's General Manager Todd Pence says they invested almost 245-thousand dollars in capital funds to move existing fiber and copper networks, which began back in August at the Five-Points intersection of Vale Park, Calumet and Roosevelt Roads, at the request of the City of Valparaiso.
Pence says most of their work just required digging a new trench a few feet over from the existing trench and transferring the cable fiber over to it. Pence says, “this new project will enable construction of a safer pedestrian path, new storm water and sewer system, and a two-lane roundabout for the community of Valparaiso.”...
   

Schneider National to Host Three Job Fairs in Gary

City of Gary
One of the nation's largest truck load carriers has joined forces with the City of Gary to bring more employment opportunities to residents. The collaboration is part of the city's “New Day, New Jobs Initiative” and Schneider will be hosting three jobs fairs before the end of the year at the WorkOne office in Gary. Schneider reports they are primarily looking for truck drivers and mechanics in the Gary area and that they are offering a five-thousand dollar signing bonus for over-the-road drivers.
The job fairs will take place on the following dates and times:
October 17, 2013
November 14, 2013
December 12, 2013
10:00a.m. – 2:00p.m.
WorkOne Office
3522 Village Circle (located in the Village Shopping Center)
Gary, IN
Applicants are asked to wear interview attire, bring a resume and proof of CDL certification if interested in the truck driver positions....
   

Indiana Tax Climate 10th Best in the Nation

For the first time ever Indiana has cracked the top ten in a national survey of business taxes. The National Federation of Business today released its 2014 State Business Tax Climate survey where Indiana ranked 5th in property taxes, 10th in personal income taxes, 11th for sales taxes and 13th for unemployment insurance taxes. The only tax for which Indiana did not place in the top 15 was the corporate tax where it ranks 24th. Indiana Governor Mike Pence called the tax rankings further evidence that the Hoosier state is on the right track.
The 10 best states in this year’s Index are Wyoming, South Dakota, Nevada, Alaska, Florida, Washington, Montana, New Hampshire, Utah and Indiana. To read the full report, visit http://taxfoundation.org/article/2014-state-business-tax-climate-index...
   

Woman Injured in Portage Township Crash

portage twp crash
(Photo Courtesy of the Times)
A woman suffered multiple injuries after she was ejected from her vehicle during a crash this morning at US 6 and County Road 450 West in Portage Township. The Times reports the woman was heading east on US 6 and failed to stop for a red light, striking a southbound vehicle on 450 West, causing the vehicle to hit a northbound school bus on 450 West. According to the article, the woman sustained a head injury and complained of pain to her torso, but police reported it appeared her injuries were non-life threatening. No other injuries were reported and no children were on the school bus at the time of the crash, which occurred just before 9am....
   

Former Wanted Person of the Week Arrested

amanda hanley
(Photo Courtesy of LaPorte Police)
A 29 year old LaPorte woman, who had been listed as the LaPorte Police Department's “Wanted Person of the Week” last week, surrendered herself to law enforcement on Tuesday. LaPorte Police report Amanda Hanley had been wanted on a warrant from LaPorte Circuit Court for felony theft....
   

Earlier Vehicle Fire Backing up the Borman

Earlier Vehicle Fire Backing up the Borman 
A traffic tipster reporting a vehicle on fire heading westbound on the Borman (I-80/94) just past the Grant Street exit initially came in shortly before 1p.m. CDT Wednesday.

INDOT reports the fre has been extinguished wih the vehicle moved to the right shoulder as fire equipment continues to block the right lane of westbound I-80/94 near Burr St. .  Drivers should expect about 20-minute delays with westbound lanes of the the Borman backing up to I-65.  Also, northbound traffic on I-65 is backing up on the connector ramp to westbound I-80/94, drivers should expect backups and delays.  

Earlier Vehicle Fire Backing up the Borman 
(Top photo:  vehicle earlier reported on fire and extinguished is off on the right shoulder of westbound I-80/94 near Burr Street.  Bottom photo:  westbound I-80/94 (Borman) backing up from I-65 and the northbound I-65 entrance ramp to westboud I-80/94 is backing up as well, due to the right lane closed near Burr St.)

(photos:  INDOT traffic cams)


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CMAP Board Votes Against Illiana Expressway

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, or “CMAP” board today voted ten-to-four to NOT include the Illiana Expressway in its Go To 2040 Plan. The vote is non-binding and the issue comes up for another vote before CMAP's Metropolitan Planning Organization next week. Meanwhile, in northwest Indiana, NIRPC has four open houses scheduled next month on the proposed east-west highway that would connect I-65 in south Lake County to I-55 in Illinois. NIRPC has votes scheduled in December on whether or not to include the project in its 2040 plan. Putting it in the plan pushes it forward for federal funding....
   

Traffic Detour on Colorado Street

Traffic-Advisory
11am - A traffic tipster reports to us that traffic is being detoured off of Colorado Street in Hobart south of US 30, in the area of construction at the new TradeWinds facility on East 83rd Place.  The tipster tells us motorists are being detoured to Clay or Mississippi Street....
   

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