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Today's News

Final Members Named to Starke County Park Board

starke-county-courthouseStarke County’s Park Board is now fully populated. Judge Kim Hall named Mike Meadows and Skyler Ellinger to the five-member panel. They join Starke County Council appointees Debbie Mix and Rosemary Rose and Starke County Commissioners appointee Marsha Bedrock. Continue reading

Pulaski County EMS Director Seeks Help in Retaining Staff

Pulaski County EMS Director Nikki Lowry asked the commissioners Monday night for help in retaining staff in her department.

She stated that there is a short turnaround of staff and believes that Pulaski County EMS needs to be more competitive when it comes to pay and work available.

Lowry also suggested offering incentives such as continuing education.

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Final Park Board Appointments Pending

The Starke County Park Board is two members away from being populated. Starke Circuit Judge Kim Hall is responsible for appointing a Democrat and a Republican to the five-member board. He advised WKVI News he is still reviewing the qualifications of potential members and expects to make a decision soon. Continue reading

Starke County Council, Commissioners Make Park Board Appointments

starke-county-courthouseThe recently formed Starke County Park Board is two members away from being populated. The county council appointed Democrat Rosemary Rose and Republican Debbie Mix to the five-member panel. The commissioners named Marsha Bedrock as their appointee. Starke Circuit Judge Kim Hall has the remaining two appointments to the board. State law requires him to appoint one Democrat and one Republican. All five initial terms will be staggered. The council appointees will serve for two and four years, the commissioners appointee for two and the judge’s appointees for one and three years. Continue reading

Funding Approved for Water Heating System at Pulaski County Justice Center

Pulaski County Justice Center

Pulaski County Justice Center

The Pulaski County Commissioners approved funds for a continuous water heating system at the Pulaski County Justice Center.

Maintenance Director Jeff Johnston explained that he attempted to get quotes for replacement equipment and for a continuous water heating system. Johnson said he got quotes for the equipment that is just like what the justice center has now, but found that the continuous water heating system is less expensive, more efficient and will better fit the needs at the jail.

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Judges to Visit Students on Constitution Day

 Trial and appellate judges will be talking to students about the U.S. Constitution on Wednesday, Sept. 17 in recognition of the anniversary of the signing of the document.

The judges will be passing out pocket constitutions for the students to keep. Judges will also discuss how the jury process works and why it is such an important component of citizenship. The project may include a public service announcement about jury duty, a discussion about statistics on state and county jury trials and a mock jury selection.

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Starke County Park Board Appointments Expected Tonight

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Council and Commissioners are expected to make their appointments to the county park and recreation board at their respective meetings this evening. The council gets two appointments, one Democrat and one Republican. The commissioners get one appointment, and it is not restricted by political party affiliation. Continue reading

Starke County Sees Spike in Workers’ Compensation Premiums

starke-county-courthouseWorkers’ compensation insurance premiums for Starke County employees have spiked for the coming year. The annual increase of nearly $60,000 is blamed on the county’s prior claims history. Premiums are determined based on three years worth of data. Continue reading

Pulaski County Council Members Briefly Discuss Airport Issues

 The Pulaski County Council has had several questions concerning the operations at the county’s airport, Arens Field, and manager Bud Widner was at the council’s Monday meeting to answer questions by the council members.

At the last meeting, the council members voiced concerns about the payment for fuel.  There was a dispute over how much money the county should be receiving for the fuel that has been used and how much was in the fuel tank when the full-time employment began. That part has been ironed out and accounted for but the method of payment for fuel by customers was discussed briefly.

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Pulaski County Council Approves Appropriation for New Ambulance

The Pulaski County Council approved an additional appropriation for the EMS for the purchase of an ambulance and new cardiac monitors.

EMS Director Nikki Lowry requested $88,000 in an additional appropriation in order to pay for the new ambulance. The insurance company will be paying $82,000 to the county after totaling the ambulance that was damaged in a fire on Feb. 7 at Wagner’s Towing. The cost of a new ambulance is approximately $150,000.

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Road Maintenance Continuing in Starke County

Starke County Highway Department crews are busy this week re-stoning gravel roads.

Starke County Highway Department crews are busy this week re-stoning gravel roads.

The Starke County Highway Department is on pace to meet and possibly exceed its road improvement goals for the year. Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler says they paved 10 miles of roadway in August at a cost of slightly more than $21,000 per mile. He says they may add to that total by the end of September. Continue reading

Starke County Highway Department Preparing for Winter Weather

 Starke County Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler is shopping for less expensive road salt to use this winter. He told the county commissioners he’s already got one contract in place through the state bid process but is attempting to negotiate better prices with other suppliers who lost out on the state bid. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Set EMS Interview Date

The Starke County Commissioners plan to interview six applicants for the EMS director position on Tuesday, Sept. 23. All six either live in Starke County or work for Starke County EMS. Other applicants will be considered as part of a secondary list. Continue reading

New Starke County Jail Still On Schedule and On Budget

This building on SR 8 at CR 550 E is part of the new Starke County Sheriff's Office and Detention Center.

This building on SR 8 at CR 550 E is part of the new Starke County Sheriff’s Office and Detention Center.

Construction of the new Starke County Sheriff’s Office and Detention Center is still on schedule to wrap up next spring. Information shared with the Starke County Building Corporation indicates the metal addition to the rear of the existing building on State Road 8 east of Knox is 80-percent finished. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners to Revisit Employee Work Restrictions

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners have asked the county attorney to look into work restrictions for county employees who have been cleared to return to work by their physicians but are still under restrictions. Interim EMS Director Keith Emigh asked about the county’s policy during the most recent regular commissioners meeting and was told employees cannot return to work unless they can perform all of their required job duties. The commissioners last week asked county attorney Marty Lucas to further research the issue and placed the matter on the agenda for their meeting this morning. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Broaden EMS Director Search

The Starke County Commissioners have changed the job criteria for the EMS director in order to expand the potential pool of applicants. Previously the county was only considering paramedics for the position. That has now been expanded to allow EMT’s to also apply for the opening. The job will pay between $38,000 and $45,000 per year, depending on experience, and the EMS director will have use of a county vehicle. Continue reading

Starke County Sheriff’s Department Set to Hire Deputies

The Starke County Sheriff’s Department is set to make offers of employment to two deputies. The county commissioners reviewed the merit board’s prioritized recommendations of the five applicants during an executive session meeting. Continue reading

Starke County Council Approves Transfers

starke-county-courthouseStarke County officials have funds available to shred government documents a committee has decided no longer need to be stored after action this week by the county council. They approved a transfer of up to $10,000 from the commissioners budget for that purpose. They stress that entire amount of money may not need to be spent for document disposal. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners to Repair Vehicle for EMS Director

Interim Starke County EMS Director Keith Emigh will continue to drive a county-issued four-wheel-drive until a recently retired patrol car is road ready. The vehicle Emigh is currently using to travel between the EMS bases in North Judson, Knox and Grovertown will be transferred to plan commission director Terry Stephenson. Continue reading

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