Knox City Council Approves Toll Brothers Tax Abatement

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council reviewed paperwork this week for tax abatement purposes for Toll Brothers in Knox.

General Manager Brian Trapp presented the council with the documents to show their requirements to be granted tax abatement. The company first sought tax abatement eight years ago. They are up nine employees since last year.

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State Representative Appears in Knox To Discuss Legislation

DermodyAn area elected representative is apologizing for an incident that gained national attention during the long-session of the Indiana General Assembly.

20th District State Representative Tom Dermody addressed members of the Starke County Chamber of Commerce on Friday to discuss legislation that has been considered since January. Portions of Starke County are included in the LaPorte Republican’s district.
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Domestic Violence Suspect Arrested Following Manhunt

Benny Giselbach

Benny Giselbach

A Knox man faces several new felony charges following a Wednesday manhunt in the Bass Lake area. It started around 12:20 p.m. when the Starke County 911 center got a call from the Bass Lake Pub. The caller told the dispatcher a woman showed up there in handcuffs and shackles saying she had been held hostage and “water boarded.” The victim told deputies she lived across the street and had fled her home on foot. Continue reading

Two Local Men Killed in Porter County Accident

Two area residents died in a two-vehicle accident in Porter County Thursday night.

An initial investigation by Porter County Sheriff’s deputies found that Roderick Heise, 34, of Knox was southbound on State Road 49 and drove left of center to pass other vehicles near 285 S. in Morgan Township when he struck a northbound van driven by Jade Michael Schneider, 20, of Francesville, according to report in “The Times”. Both drivers were pronounced dead at the scene. The vehicles did not carry any passengers.

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Local GOP Hosts Annual Lincoln Day Dinner This Weekend

Republican Party Elephant

Republican Party Elephant

A dinner being held this weekend in Bass Lake is attracting several of the area’s top elected representatives.

The Starke County Republican Central Committee is hosting their 2015 Lincoln Day Dinner. Similar meals are hosted across the nation as a way for local GOP members to fundraise for the year.

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Knox City Council Approves Purchase of New Stop Light

 The stop light at Main and Culver Roads in Knox will be replaced.

A proposal was given to the city council that will include labor, wiring, installation, control box, for a brand-new stop light with LED lighting at a cost of $5,250. Other estimates given to the city for the past several years have been over ten times that amount.

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Bella Vita Pregnancy Resource Center Celebrates Five Years

Bella VitaThe featured speaker at the 5th annual Bella Vita Resource Center’s annual banquet was Peggy Rumer, who shared in words and music inspirational and “life changing” events in her life. She told of dealing with the birth of an unexpected baby and her new Christian life style.

The program and dinner was held at the Nancy J. Dembowski Center in downtown Knox. Speakers reported that Starke County holds the 3rd highest rate of teen pregnancies in the State of Indiana. Last year, more than 230 females and 90 males attended parenting classes at the center. Thirteen abortions were recorded by the agency in 2014 –compared to 27 in 2013.

The local pregnancy resource center is headquartered a 52 West Lake Street in Knox; the old post office building. It is a non-profit organization designed to assist those in an unplanned pregnancy situation. It is supported by donations.

Knox City Council Approves Resolution for Proposed Water Project

  The Knox City Council approved a resolution to apply for a $350,000 grant from the state Office of Community and Rural Affairs for a proposed water project. The city has earmarked a 25 percent match of $87,500 for the project. It could include the replacement of water lines around brown circle on Delamatyr, Fisher and Adam. The other part of the project would extend lines to Mound Street and Myrtle Court. Washington Street and Allen Drive would also be involved. The project may also include an extension of lines from Williams Street to John Street.

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Child Abuse Prevention Requires Education

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and a local advocacy group is hoping to bring attention to the issue in Starke County.

Members of the local group Coalition Against Domestic Abuse (CADA) say they’re hosting a candlelight vigil at the end of April to help provide information to community members about the issue.
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State Representative Speaking in Knox on Friday

DermodyA state legislator out of LaPorte will be addressing members of the Starke County Chamber of Commerce.

According to a newsletter from the Chamber, 20th District State Representative Tom Dermody will be speaking at a breakfast about the long-session of the General Assembly. The breakfast will be held at the Country Kettle Restaurant on Friday at 8:00 a.m. in Knox.


Dermody introduced legislation this session that would have allowed the Sunday sale of alcohol for carryout. That legislation was later pulled for a variety of reasons, among which was lacking support.

The Chamber is encouraging participants to ask questions of Dermody. The General Assembly will be meeting in Indianapolis until April 29th.


Knox City Council Members Approve Donation Toward Serenity Garden Project

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council agreed to donate funds to build a gazebo for the Serenity Garden project.

Knox High School students will be planting trees, flowers, and other plants in the green space at the corner of Lake and Main Streets in the downtown area. Don White, who is a member of the Starke County Economic Development Board of Directors, presented the council members with an idea for a sturdier structure for a gazebo at that location.

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Status Hearing Set for Arson Defendant

  The owner of a Knox business destroyed by fire last March is due back in Starke Circuit Court next week for a status hearing. James Campbell owns Starke County Recycling, C&C Salvage and Campbell’s Tire Barn on U.S. 35 just south of Toto Road and is accused of setting the buildings on fire. Continue reading

Knox City Council to Review Comprehensive Plan Tonight

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council members will discuss progress on the Serenity Garden project when they meet tonight.

Knox High School students are working hard to get things ready for the project at the corner of Lake and Main Streets in downtown Knox. The students are planning to plant donated vegetation and flowers at the location as well as install purchased benches and bricks in the allotted space. The project is expected to get underway soon.

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Don’t Ignore Income Tax Filing Deadline

Federal and state income tax returns need to be filed tomorrow. Michelle Bachtel with H&R Block says you have options if you owe and are not able to pay. She adds the most important thing is not to panic

“If you can’t pay the full amount by April 15, just pay what as much as you can,” Bachtel said. “Even though interest will accrue on the amount owed, you’re not going to be arrested, and they’re not going to come knock on your door and seize your home.” Continue reading

Work Continues on U.S. 35 Railroad Crossing in Knox

Work is expected to continue this week on the U.S. 35 railroad crossing in Knox.

According to city officials, INDOT and railroad crews are working to improve the crossing that became rather rough during the winter months. Officials hope that the crossing will open in the middle of the week.

Until the crossing opens, motorists are encouraged to use the INDOT recommended detour. Southbound U.S. 35 traffic will be detoured west on State Road 8, south on State Road 39, east on State Road 10, and back to U.S. 35. Northbound traffic will be detoured west on State Road 10, north on State Road 39, east on State Road 8, and back to U.S. 35. Local traffic can utilize local streets to avoid the closure.

Itemizing Pays If You Qualify

Federal and state income taxes are due Wednesday. Michelle Bachtel from H&R Block in Knox says taxpayers can either take the standard deduction or itemize, depending on which will be most advantageous for their personal situation.

For individuals who are filing single or married filing separate, the standard deduction is $6,200. For a married filing joint couple or a qualifying widower with a dependent child, that amount is doubled to $12,400. And for a person filing head of household the amount is $9,100.

Bachtel encourages taxpayers to study their options carefully. Continue reading

Tax Deductions and Credits Can Save You Money

Double check your federal tax return for any missed deductions and credits before you file it. Michelle Bachtel with H&R Block in Knox says deductions decrease your taxable income, which lowers the amount of money you owe. She says the IRS estimated last year over 4 million people failed to claim tax deductions to which they were entitled last year.  Continue reading

Starke County WIC Office Relocating

indiana-wic1Starke County’s WIC office is moving to a new location. They’re relocating from 17 to 15 North Main Street in Knox. Program officials say the move will save the county money, as the $600 monthly rent for the new site includes utilities. WIC provides nutrition assistance to expectant and new mothers and children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk and meet income guidelines.

Bring Essential Documents to Your Tax Appointment

If you haven’t filed your taxes yet, time is running out. Federal and state income taxes are both due Wednesday, April 15. Michelle Bachtel from H&R Block in Knox says you need to have personal information for everyone on your return handy before you start. This includes Social Security numbers, birth dates and full legal names as registered with the Social Security Administration. You will also need documentation of all of your income from wages, tips, savings, investments, retirement, rental property, self-employment or farming. Continue reading

Knox High School Drama Department Presents Oklahoma!

oklahoma_logoEnjoy the Rogers and Hammerstein classic Musical Oklahoma! this weekend at Knox High School. Director Terrill Hahn says staging such a production presents quite a few challenges.

“You have to make sure you have kids that can act, and sing and do a little dancing,” Hahn said. A 35 member cast and crew is putting on the musical. Performances are tomorrow night at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 4 at the Knox High School auditorium. Tickets are $6 each at the door.