Sheriff warns of ATV thefts in county

Sep 12, 2017 22

The Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department is warning about a rash of ATV thefts. The sheriff’s department says that the thefts are happening all over the county, mostly overnights. They recommend you secure your recreational vehicles and make sure to take the key out of the ignition when you put it away. They are also suggesting that you keep all of the paperwork and take photos of your ATV so that you can recover it, if it does get stolen. You should report any suspicious activity to the sheriff’s department. at 812-379-1740 or you can call the dispatch center at 812-379-1689 ...

Car dealer giving slice of sales to BCSC elementaries

Sep 12, 2017 24

A local car dealer is planning a monthly donation to an elementary school in the Bartholomew Consolidated Schools district. Heritage Automotive Sales in Columbus presented its first check for $2,000 to Clifty Creek Elementary at last night’s school board meeting. Owners, Loren and Erica White, are pledging $200 from every auto sale will go to an elementary school. Next month’s recipient will be Taylorsville Elementary. ...

Hope offering $1k to agency for best Heritage Days costumes

Sep 12, 2017 18

The 50th annual Hope Heritage Days will offer a $1,000 dollar twist this year to encourage local not-for-profits to get in the historical spirit of the event. Organizers will be offering that prize to the food booth with the best historical costumes. The festival features a Town Square full of food vendors, each of which represent one of 17 local not-for-profit groups. Organizers say that for many charities, the festival is their largest and only fundraiser for the year. This year the Town Council offered organizers at Heritage of Hope a $1,000 grant to encourage the historical observation for the 50th anniversary event. The annual festival, held the weekend of Sept. 22nd, draws more than 30,000 people and is the largest festival in Bartholomew County. You can get more information at hopeheritagedays.org. ...

Council looking for your thoughts on income tax hike

Sep 12, 2017 23

The Bartholomew County Council is looking for your thoughts on a proposed increase in income taxes to pay for public safety and to balance the county budget. The tax rate would increase by half a percentage point and would raise county revenues by $4.8 million dollars. Half of that rate increase would be allocated to public safety. The council meets at 6 p.m. tonight at the Bartholomew County Governmental Office building on Third Street. ...

Property values finally rebounding after 2008 flood

Sep 12, 2017 19

Nine years after the 2008 flood and the national recession, the assessed value of property in Bartholomew County is ready to rebound to its pre-flood levels. That’s according to an analysis by Bartholomew Consolidated Schools as school officials are planning next year’s budget. Chad Phillips, the school district’s assistant superintendent for finance, presented the first draft of the upcoming budget at last night’s school board meeting. He said that the estimated assessed value for property in the school district, which covers most of Bartholomew County, would rise above $4 billion dollars for the first time since 2008. That would allow the district to have a budget increase of just over 2 percent, without having to raise property taxes, he said. The district will also benefit from a slight increase in enrollment. The actual head count is later this week, but officials believe they will be up about 36 students over last school year. The district is looking at an overall budget of just over $115 million dollars. The largest part... ...

Health Department offers cholesterol screening

Sep 11, 2017 20

The Bartholomew County Health Department will offer cholesterol screening for county residents. Staff says that these screenings will be by appointment only, and tests for total cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL, HDL. The screenings will take place on the morning September 26th at the Health Department, located at 2675 Foxpointe Drive, Suite B. The cost for the Cholesterol screening is $15. Cash, debit, or credit card accepted. Participants must fast 12 hours prior to the screening. To schedule an appointment, call the department at (812) 379-1555, Option 1, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ...

Lucas supports constitutional carry

Sep 11, 2017 35

State Rep. Jim Lucas, a Republican representing portions of Bartholomew, Jackson and Jennings counties, is a strong proponent of Hoosiers being able to carry a gun without license. He recently sent a letter to the editor of numerous news outlets explaining his position. It reads: Dear editor, After two hearings on constitutional carry, I am amazed at the amount of misunderstanding and misrepresentation still being shown on this issue and want to set the record straight on several points. Article 1 Section 32 of the Indiana Constitution specifically reads, “The people shall have a right to bear arms, for the defense of themselves and the State.” Shall is absolute language in law. However, to lawfully carry a handgun in Indiana, the state currently requires an individual to fill out lengthy forms, schedule to get fingerprinted and pay the state a fee to exercise this constitutionally protected right. Imagine the outcry if we held our other rights like going to church, voting, being secure in our homes or freedom of the... ...

Campus groups fight against suicide

Sep 11, 2017 22

Ivy Tech Community College’s and IUPUC’s Hope Squad is working to prevent suicide and to increase the public’s awareness of the issue this week. The Columbus campus group has informational tables set up today at the campus off of Central Avenue. This week is National Suicide Prevention Week. On Tuesday, the campus will hold a panel discussion with local emergency workers and their work addressing suicides. That will be from noon to 1 p.m.at the Columbus Learning Center.. Wednesday night there will be a look at the causes and numbers of suicides in Bartholomew County That will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the center. From 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday a speaker from the Life Recovery Center of Indianapolis will be available. All of those events are in the auditorium at the Columbus Learning Center. The Hope Squad is a group of students, faculty and staff at the schools working to prevent suicides. The work is funded by a grant from Heritage Fund – The Community Foundation of... ...

County considers raising income tax rates

Sep 11, 2017 16

The Bartholomew County Council is considering an increase to the local income tax rate as a way to balance the county’s budget and to improve public safety. Laura DeDomenic, the council president, says that after all the budget hearings and increased spending requests were made, the county is looking at deficit spending of about $1.7 million dollars next year. DeDomenic, the council president, says that the increase would be half a percentage point and would raise about $4.8 million dollars annually. Of the proposed increase, half would go directly to public safety needs, focusing on the jail, courts and youth services center. She said part of the stress on the system is due to the heroin epidemic. She explains where the money would go: During last week’s council work session, she urged other council members who oppose the income tax increase to come back with a plan of how the county should better make ends meet. DeDomenic said the reaction from the public has been largely positive so far. But... ...

INDOT training to affect traffic between Seymour and North Vernon

Sep 8, 2017 33

Indiana Department of Transportation Southeast District personnel will train for responding to an earthquake disaster next week. Operations will include route clearing, bridge inspection and building assessments. Many of these preparedness activities will occur at the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center at Butlerville. Authorities say this will cause a noticeable traffic increase between Seymour’s district headquarters, the unit facility at North Vernon and the MUTC. On Monday and Wednesday, INDOT teams will be deployed from Seymour traveling along U.S. Highway 50 and its bypass at North Vernon to the INDOT unit location. On Tuesday and Thursday, convoys of teams will deploy from the North Vernon unit to the Muscatatuck training area throughout the day via U.S. 50. Officials say these training programs are conducted each year to assure INDOT readiness for responding to natural disasters. ...