Government

Vaping bill sponsor admits 'it did' put people out of business

October 6, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
Indiana State Sen. Ron Alting, the Lafayette lawmaker who sponsored the controversial vaping law that essentially put a single private security firm—located in his town and run by his high school classmate—in charge of selecting winners and losers in the e-liquid manufacturing industry, is now admitting the law created an unfair playing field.
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Airbnb’s San Francisco showdown may set rules for gig economy

October 6, 2016
 Bloomberg News
Airbnb Inc. has a message for cities that try to enforce rules that crimp its couch-surfing style: See you in court.
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Firm again seeks attorney fees in overcharges suit; BMV files opposition

October 5, 2016
The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles is once again challenging an Indianapolis law firm’s motion to collect attorney fees in the class action it brought against the BMV for years of customer overcharges.
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Judge gives 60 days for owners to raze Battle Ground hotel

October 5, 2016
 Associated Press
A judge has ordered the owners of a decaying Battle Ground hotel to demolish the structure within 60 days due to years of neglect.
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Necessary judicial appointments may come at other courts’ expense

October 5, 2016
Dave Stafford
The short-staffing illustrated in the largest and most thorough weighted caseload study of the state’s trial courts may be met in the future, but not likely without cuts elsewhere. Rep. Greg Steuerwald, R-Danville, told a legislative study committee Sept. 22 that appointment of new state-paid judicial officers should be tied to reducing numbers of officers where they are underutilized.
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Non-citizen transgender man sues state to change name

October 5, 2016
Olivia Covington
Because of an Indiana law that prohibits non-citizens from legally changing their names, John Doe must continue to identify as Jane on all documents until he becomes a naturalized citizen.
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Exodus: Syrian refugees ‘not who Pence and others claim’

October 4, 2016
Dave Stafford
Fresh off a defeat of Gov. Mike Pence’s effort to bar Syrian war victims from settling in Indiana, the leader of a refugee resettlement program said the agency’s work assisting them will continue.
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Justices to referee states' dispute over uncashed checks

October 3, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States has agreed to referee a dispute between Delaware and 23 states, including Indiana, over more than $150 million in uncashed MoneyGram checks.
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Ex-retailer accused of bilking military settles suit for $800K

October 3, 2016
IL Staff
Indiana consumers, particularly military personnel and veterans, will be receiving nearly $800,000 in restitution after former retailer USA Discounters reached a multi-state settlement for allegations of misleading consumers through deception sales practices.
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7th Circuit affirms order against Pence in Syrian refugee case

October 3, 2016
Dave Stafford
Calling Gov. Mike Pence’s objection to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Indiana because they may pose a terrorism threat “nightmare speculation,” the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Monday rejected the governor’s appeal of rulings blocking his bid to withhold federal funding to an agency assisting war victims.
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Inmate death a challenge for states: How to tell victims?

September 30, 2016
 Associated Press
States have struggled to meet a 2004 federal mandate to notify crime victims of certain events, including an offender's death: Most notifications that an inmate has been released from custody don't mention the inmate's death.
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Monarch affiliate gets OK to sell liquor after judge denies stay

September 29, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
The Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission granted Spirited a temporary permit to sell liquor on a wholesale basis this week after a Marion County Special Court judge denied the state of Indiana’s request for a stay on an August ruling that found the state agency was “arbitrary and capricious” in its decision to deny the company a liquor wholesaling permit back in 2014.
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Cold case murder charge against Fort Wayne man dropped

September 29, 2016
 Associated Press
Prosecutors have dropped a murder charge against a Fort Wayne man whose trial in a 1993 slaying ending in a mistrial when jurors could not agree on a verdict.
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Report: Just 37 percent facing deportation have lawyers

September 29, 2016
Dave Stafford
Fewer than four in 10 people facing deportation proceedings in the United States are represented by legal counsel. Among the majority of those immigrants who are in government detention, just 14 percent had lawyers, according to a new study.
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115-year-old Indiana campground closing amid state lawsuit

September 28, 2016
 Associated Press
A central Indiana campground that's been operating for more than a century is closing its gates amid a state lawsuit.
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Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles overcharges trial to begin

September 28, 2016
 Associated Press
A class-action lawsuit is set to go to trial accusing the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles of overcharging license and title fees.
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Neither Trump, Clinton exactly right about stop-and-frisk

September 27, 2016
 Associated Press
Donald Trump says the police tactic known as stop-and-frisk led to a drop in murders in New York City, while Hillary Clinton says it has been ruled unconstitutional.
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DC appeals court hears arguments in Clean Power Plan case

September 27, 2016
 Associated Press
The federal appeals court in Washington began hearing arguments Tuesday in the legal fight over President Barack Obama's plan to curtail greenhouse gas emissions.
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Prosecutor weighs retrial in Indiana triple-murder case

September 27, 2016
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana prosecutor plans to speak to relatives of three people slain in 1998 and review evidence before deciding if he'll retry a man whose second triple-murder conviction was thrown out last week, his office said Monday.
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Anthem and Cigna don’t get along, but they’ll never tell

September 26, 2016
 Bloomberg News
In federal court papers filed Thursday, Anthem Inc. said that Department of Justice prosecutors seeking to block the deal shouldn’t have access to letters between Anthem and Cigna Corp.’s lawyers where they disagree about aspects of the $48 billion takeover by Anthem.
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Hamilton County leaders moving forward with jail renovation

September 26, 2016
Lindsey Erdody, IBJ Staff
Hamilton County leaders seem to have found a compromise for expanding the county's correctional campus plan.
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More Hillary Clinton emails to be released by State Department

September 23, 2016
 Bloomberg News
The State Department told a federal judge Friday it found 5,600 work-related e-mails from a disk of deleted messages recovered from the private email server Hillary Clinton used while secretary of state, raising the possibility of further disclosures on a subject that has dogged the Democrat’s presidential bid.
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Panel endorses new magistrates for Clark, Shelby County courts

September 23, 2016
Dave Stafford
Clark County, Indiana’s perennially busiest judicial circuit on a weighted-caseload basis, and Shelby County will get new magistrates next year if the General Assembly follows Thursday’s recommendation of a judicial study panel.
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7th Circuit Court finds former county employee’s FLSA rights were not violated

September 23, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals found Thursday that Tippecanoe County adequately compensated a former employee who sued the county for violation of his rights under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
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Lead crisis in housing project was actually no surprise

September 23, 2016
 Associated Press
A review of public documents and news coverage dating back to the 1960s shows officials at half a dozen local, state and federal agencies were aware East Chicago residents were living on and playing in lead-tainted soil, though some of the most alarming readings weren't widely known until recently.
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  1. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  2. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  3. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  4. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

  5. Brian W, I fear I have not been sufficiently entertaining to bring you back. Here is a real laugh track that just might do it. When one is grabbed by the scruff of his worldview and made to choose between his Confession and his profession ... it is a not a hard choice, given the Confession affects eternity. But then comes the hardship in this world. Imagine how often I hear taunts like yours ... "what, you could not even pass character and fitness after they let you sit and pass their bar exam ... dude, there must really be something wrong with you!" Even one of the Bishop's foremost courtiers said that, when explaining why the RCC refused to stand with me. You want entertaining? How about watching your personal economy crash while you have a wife and five kids to clothe and feed. And you can't because you cannot work, because those demanding you cast off your Confession to be allowed into "their" profession have all the control. And you know that they are wrong, dead wrong, and that even the professional code itself allows your Faithful stand, to wit: "A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of Rule 1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law." YET YOU ARE A NONPERSON before the BLE, and will not be heard on your rights or their duties to the law -- you are under tyranny, not law. And so they win in this world, you lose, and you lose even your belief in the rule of law, and demoralization joins poverty, and very troubling thoughts impeaching self worth rush in to fill the void where your career once lived. Thoughts you did not think possible. You find yourself a failure ... in your profession, in your support of your family, in the mirror. And there is little to keep hope alive, because tyranny rules so firmly and none, not the church, not the NGO's, none truly give a damn. Not even a new court, who pay such lip service to justice and ancient role models. You want entertainment? Well if you are on the side of the courtiers running the system that has crushed me, as I suspect you are, then Orwell must be a real riot: "There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever." I never thought they would win, I always thought that at the end of the day the rule of law would prevail. Yes, the rule of man's law. Instead power prevailed, so many rules broken by the system to break me. It took years, but, finally, the end that Dr Bowman predicted is upon me, the end that she advised the BLE to take to break me. Ironically, that is the one thing in her far left of center report that the BLE (after stamping, in red ink, on Jan 22) is uninterested in, as that the BLE and ADA office that used the federal statute as a sword now refuses to even dialogue on her dire prediction as to my fate. "C'est la vie" Entertaining enough for you, status quo defender?

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