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All posts by Anita Goodan

Frank Joseph Kida, Sr.

Funeral services for Frank Joseph Kida, Sr., 71, of North Judson, Indiana are Saturday, Nov. 29, 2014 at 10 a.m. CT at SS Cyril and Methodius Catholic Church in North Judson.  Visitation is Friday, Nov 28, 2014 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. CT with a 7:30 p.m. CT Rosary service at the O’Donnell Funeral Home in North Judson.

Unemployment Dips Slightly in October

 Unemployment slipped a little in October for Starke County, but still remains low compared to previous reports. In all, 77 counties saw a slide in unemployment in October.

Starke County had an October unemployment rate of 6.1 percent. The percentage fell two points in October. Starke County is ranked 15th in the state.

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Knox City Council Approves Funds for Shell Building

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

Money has been earmarked for the construction of a shell building in the Knox Industrial Park.

Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Charlie Weaver told the Knox City Council members last night that companies are looking for existing structures to move right into to start up their businesses. Weaver said companies don’t want to have to go through the process of building the site with infrastructure, permitting and zoning issues. They want to have a building that they can customize to their needs and begin their business right away.

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Domestic Violence Defendant Sentenced to Probation

 A man was sentenced to probation in a hearing in Starke Circuit Court Tuesday afternoon.

William Jones pleaded guilty in a plea agreement with the state to a charge of domestic battery as a Class D felony. Judge Kim Hall accepted the plea agreement and Jones was sentenced to 18 months in the Indiana Department of Corrections with the entire sentence suspended to be served on probation. Jones must pay a $50 domestic violence fee along with court costs.

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Pulaski County Employees Collect Food for Food Pantry

The employees in the government offices in Pulaski County are collecting food for the Pulaski County Human Services Food Pantry.

Auditor Shelia Garling asked the commissioners for permission to place boxes in the courthouse to collect food for those who are less fortunate this holiday season. A box is located in the courthouse and in the Pulaski County Justice Center.

If you have a donation you’d like to drop off, get those in today by the end of the day to help someone in need at either location. Non-perishable food items are welcome, as well as soaps, deodorant, shampoos, and diapers.

Marshall County Commissioners Split Cost of Conduit with Plymouth

The Marshall County Metronet project is drawing to a close.

The commissioners last week approved a payment agreement between the county and the City of Plymouth for shared conduit installation. The county is to pay half of the cost of the installation and handholds on Lincolnway to State Road 17 on Pioneer Drive, Pioneer Drive to Overmyer Drive and three lateral connections to the three county buildings for a total cost of $37,513.76. The city will pay the same cost for those installation costs.

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Pulaski County CDC Director Discusses Initiation of Redevelopment Commission

Pulaski County Community Development Commission Executive Director Nathan Origer brought forth the idea of a redevelopment commission to the county commissioners during their recent meeting.

Origer explained that there are opportunities the county could be missing out on without a redevelopment commission.

“It allows basically two important things that we cannot do right now,” said Origer. “If ever a town or the county wanted to buy real estate for a downtown revitalization effort because they have absentee owners who are not making buildings usable for potential tenants, the RDC could much more easily purchase that and put any work into it as necessary. They can sell it or lease it to tenants than a municipal entity on its own could. The other thing is setting up TIF Districts.”

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Trial Date Set for Accused Murderer

 A trial date has been set in the case of a man who is accused of murdering his estranged wife.

Gary Chavez appeared for a status hearing in Starke Circuit Court on Monday afternoon with his attorneys, Leslie Baker and Dave Welter. Starke County Prosecutor Nicholas Bourff indicated that there were some discovery issues with several pieces of evidence. Dave Welter told the judge that some medical reports are also needed and Chavez may require another surgery.

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Curtis DeVries Sentenced in Starke Circuit Court

  Curtis DeVries was sentenced Monday afternoon in Starke Circuit Court.

A 12-member jury found Curtis DeVries not guilty on a charge of burglary, but he was found guilty on a lesser included offense of residential entry, a Class D felony. The jury also found DeVries guilty on a charge of criminal mischief as a Class A misdemeanor. The verdicts came in on Friday, Oct. 24.

Judge Kim Hall told DeVries Monday that he has a large drinking problem that he needs to get under control. Judge Hall stated that if he hadn’t have consumed such a large amount of alcohol on the night of this event, he wouldn’t be in court facing a sentence.

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Probation Given to Hard-Working North Judson Man

 A good employment record and a commitment to help his mother with Alzheimers were just a couple of factors in Russell Hendron’s favor when it came to his sentencing hearing in Starke Circuit Court.

Hendron was charged with maintaining a common nuisance and possession of methamphetamine. Hendron took the stand where he explained that he had held at position at a North Judson business for three decades. He left his long-time employment to care for his mother who moved into his home after being diagnosed with Alzheimers. He said that he’s been working out of his home attempting to make ends meet. He accepted that fact that what he did was wrong and is ready to put this behind him.

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Knox City Council to Meet Tonight

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council will meet tonight where more discussion will be held regarding a dumpster ordinance.

When the council members last met, City Attorney David Matsey issued policy copies from other municipalities and to choose specific options that would pertain to city. He noted that the main goal is to restrict the time in which dumpsters can be placed at a site where a project is in progress. More information will be sorted out during tonight’s meeting.

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Pulaski County CDC Director Gives CAGIT Tax Update to Commissioners

Pulaski County Justice Center

Pulaski County Justice Center

Pulaski County Community Development Commission Executive Director Nathan Origer gave the commissioners an update on his discussions surrounding the changes in the CAGIT tax with the local legislators.

Origer had approached the commissioners at their earlier November meeting for support in overturning legislation to free up money for the CEDIT fund for economic development. He believes that the special CAGIT tax should be used to help pay the jail lease instead of the CEDIT fund. Origer argued that the CEDIT fund should be used for economic development projects and not just the jail lease. To do this, Origer needs to approach local legislators to change legislation allowing language to change the law to reflect his request.

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Marshall County Commissioners Approve Agreement for Meals on Wheels

The Marshall County Commissioners recently discussed a Memorandum of Understanding to continue the Meals on Wheels program at the Marshall County Council on Aging.

County Attorney Jim Clevenger stated that the current agreement expires Dec. 31 of this year and it needed to be renewed. The agreement allows the meals to be cooked at the Marshall County Jail at a cost of $3.25 per person. The personnel at the Marshall County Council on Aging pick up the meals at the jail and deliver them to those in need.

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Pedestrian Struck by Tractor-Trailer in Francesville

The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department investigated an accident on Thursday involving a semi-tractor trailer and a 14-year-old pedestrian on U.S. 421 just south of Gordon Street in Francesville.

The truck driver, 57-year-old Jerry E. Dehaven of Rossville, Indiana, was southbound on U.S. 421 when he observed a pedestrian walking along the road, according to a news release. Dehaven stated that the pedestrian turned and walked into the southbound lane and he attempted to miss the pedestrian. He reportedly told police that he was unable to miss the pedestrian and she was struck by the center of the tractor-trailer knocking her to the ground.

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Pulaski County EMS Director Still Looking for Paramedics

Pulaski County EMS Director Nikki Lowry told the commissioners Monday night that she has hired seven part-time personnel to help with the shortage of staff and training is ongoing this week.

While that helps cover shifts, Lowry explained that only one of those hired is a paramedic. All of the other new hires are basic life service trained only. One may move to a full-time position. She said at least one paramedic is needed per shift and there is one on each shift now.

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Marshall County Commissioners Hold Public Hearing on Pretty Lake Setbacks

The Marshall County Commissioners held a public hearing during their meeting Monday morning concerning an ordinance regulating building setbacks at Pretty Lake.

Plan Director Ralph Booker explained that the Pretty Lake Homeowners Association approved a change where new construction at the lake would need to be a 45 foot setback from an 789.0 elevation line. The plan commission also approved the ordinance with one commission member against.

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Two Recount Requests Filed in Starke County Clerk’s Office

Request for a recount in two races in the General Election have been filed in the Starke County Clerk’s office.

Clerk Evelyn Skronski told WKVI News that a recount has been requested in the County Council District 4 race between Republican Don White and Democrat Pamela Stalbaum. Stalbaum had received 707 votes and White had 705 votes. The second request has been filed in the race for Railroad Township Trustee. Republican Mandy Thompson won the seat by three votes over Democrat Roger Chaffins, Sr.

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North Judson-San Pierre School Board to Discuss Balanced Calendar

TCalendarhe North Judson-San Pierre School Board will discuss several items tonight when they meet in the central office at 7 p.m. CT.

The balanced calendar will be discussed. Superintendent Lynn Johnson has previously stated that the calendars need to be similar with Knox and Oregon-Davis to accommodate students in the JESSE and vocational cooperative programs. Corporations normally adopt school calendars by January and the school board could adopt a calendar tonight.

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Knox Police Investigating Another Church Burglary

The Knox City Police Department is investigating another church burglary.

According to police, the United Methodist Church at 201 S. Shield Street was broken into Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Electronic equipment was stolen and the building suffered a lot of damage.

Knox officers believe that two suspects forced entry to building. The incident remains under investigation.

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