Starke County Commissioners Add Road to Inventory

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners have agreed to add a short stretch of roadway to the county’s inventory. Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Charlie Weaver asked that the 1/6 mile Industrial Parkway north of 500 North in Hamlet be included in the list of county-maintained roads that is sent to the state. Doing so will ensure Starke County gets credit for the roadway when it comes to state funding distribution. Continue reading

Starke County Looks to Expand WorkOne Partnership

 The Starke County Commissioners hope to expand their success with a WorkOne job training program to other departments within county government. Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler was the first to take advantage of the agency’s offer of free help to teach young people so-called “soft skills” like showing up to work on time, following directions and adhering to a schedule. WorkOne pays the employees to hone their job skills, and there is no cost to the county. Continue reading

Starke County Officials Approve Hospital Lease Extension


The Starke County Commissioners last night approved another extension of the lease deadline with Starke Hospital. The county owns the land and building at the corner of Culver Road and South Heaton Street in Knox. Starke Hospital wants to build a new facility there. Once it’s finished they plan to tear down the current building and use that spot for parking and green space. Continue reading

Starke County Officials Struggle With Jail Budget

Starke County Justice CenterStarke County officials are looking at short and long-term ways to shore up operating expenses at the new jail. It has been open for about a year, and budgeted operating costs were based on an actuarial study done for the county. Information shared during last night’s joint meeting of the council and commissioners indicates those recommendations may have been based on flawed information. Continue reading

Starke Hospital CEO Discusses New Facility Plans


Negotiations between the county and the new owners of Starke Hospital regarding the construction of a new facility on the existing site are ongoing. The county owns the current building at the corner of Heaton Street and Culver Road in Knox and the land on which is sits, but the hospital is operated by Community Health Systems. Starke Hospital CEO Craig Felty says they’re making progress in negotiations with the county for a new lease. Continue reading

Starke County Officials to Discuss Jail Operating Costs

Starke County Justice CenterThe Starke County Council and Commissioners will meet in special session this evening to discuss the sheriff department budget. Last month the council deferred Sheriff Bill Dulin’s request for an additional appropriation until they can get a handle on expenses at the justice center. The new jail has been open for about a year, and budgeted operating costs were based on an actuarial study done for the county. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Discuss Options for Coroner Space

Glove factory
Part of the former Pariso Industrial Glove Manufacturing Company building in Knox could soon be converted into morgue space for the Starke County Coroner’s office.

The Starke County Commissioners are still trying to find permanent space for the coroner’s office. It’s presently located at the old jail across from the courthouse. However, that space is due to be renovated later this year into offices for Starke County Community Corrections, the probation department and Purdue Extension. Continue reading

Starke Commissioners Amend Unsafe Building Ordinance

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners adopted amendments to the county’s unsafe building ordinance last night amid enthusiastic support from members of the public. Koontz Lake residents in particular attended the meeting and expressed frustration with the prevalence of visible junk vehicles, trash and other debris they say are driving down property values and affecting quality of life. Concerns were also raised about trash that’s not properly disposed of attracting rodents and potentially spreading diseases. Continue reading