Local government

Fight over Knightstown demolition sent back to trial court

February 16, 2017
Dave Stafford
A man who owns a building on Knightstown’s Main Street can proceed with his lawsuit after the town lost some rulings in its favor on interlocutory appeal.
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COA: All properties in stormwater district contribute to stormwater system

February 15, 2017
Olivia Covington
All property owners within a stormwater district “contribute to” the stormwater system, regardless of whether the property drains into the system, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday in a case that forces property owners in Richmond to pay a stormwater fee.
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Judge affirms dead candidate winner in Allen County election

February 8, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
An Allen Superior judge decided Wednesday that the Republican candidate for an at-large seat on the Allen County Council who died four days before the General Election was properly left on the ballot and certified as a winner. The judge noted that Indiana Code doesn’t specifically address this unique situation.
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Justices hold mayor lacked authority to fire utilities superintendent

February 8, 2017
Olivia Covington
A divided Indiana Supreme Court held Wednesday that a mayor did not have statutory authority to terminate his city’s utilities superintendent, writing in an opinion that “may well offend sound public policy” that only the utilities board can terminate the superintendent with cause, notice and a hearing.
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Indicted Indiana sheriff seeks removal of special prosecutor

February 7, 2017
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana sheriff's trial on bribery charges was postponed on the day it was to begin after his attorney questioned whether the special prosecutor should be removed from the case.
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Ex-Indiana schools chief Bennett ineligible for county seat

February 3, 2017
 Associated Press
Former state schools superintendent Tony Bennett can't fill a vacant Clark County Council seat because he hasn't lived there long enough.
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Indiana mayor weighs ID program aimed at helping immigrants

January 27, 2017
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana mayor may pursue a plan to begin issuing ID cards to immigrants living in the country without legal permission. Latino community leaders have been urging Goshen officials for months to issue such ID cards.
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Gary councilwoman challenges accusations of law violation

January 4, 2017
 Associated Press
A city councilwoman has filed a lawsuit to keep her second job as an employee of the Gary Sanitary District.
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Assessor waived objection to untimely filing of record

January 3, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Tax Court on Friday determined that a northern Indiana assessor’s office waived its objection to a late-filed certified administrative record in a tax appeal, ruling that an objection must be made before the merits of a case have been furthered.
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COA: Case for relief against INDOT may continue

December 16, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals allowed a local government entity to continue seeking relief against the Indiana Department of Transportation Friday, holding that the local unit of government had standing to seek both injunctive and declaratory relief.
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Kokomo leaders look to reverse law prohibiting pinball

December 7, 2016
 Associated Press
At their height, the pings and bells of pinball machines could be heard in arcades and pizza parlors across Kokomo, offering an afternoon escape for teenagers and a consistently profitable investment for store owners. Unbeknownst to the two groups, their actions were illegal.
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Hartford City sex offender ordinance unconstitutionally vague

December 2, 2016
IL Staff
A 2008 Hartford City ordinance that restricted registered sex offenders from entering or loitering within 300 feet of broadly defined “child safety zones” is unconstitutionally vague, a federal judge has ruled.
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Family values groups’ human rights lawsuit stays in court

November 30, 2016
Olivia Covington
A Hamilton County judge has ruled that a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of human rights ordinances in four Indiana cities can continue, despite the cities’ arguments that there was no legal standing to bring the suit in court.
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Man sues in local election, says winning candidate was dead

November 23, 2016
 Associated Press
A Democrat who ran for the Allen County Council is challenging the results because one of the three contested seats went to a candidate who died shortly before the election.
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Judge halts Brownsburg annexation

November 21, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
A Marion County judge has stopped an annexation by the town of Brownsburg, finding that while key parts of Indiana’s annexation statute are vague, the municipality did not show the area to be annexed had an urban character nor that it was needed for future development.
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Lake County sheriff, Portage mayor charged in towing-bribe schemes

November 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
Lake County Sheriff and county Democratic Party Chairman John Buncich and Portage Mayor James Snyder have been indicted on public corruption and bribery charges handed down by a grand jury.
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Retired Richmond lawyer’s author dream comes true

November 16, 2016
Olivia Covington
Throughout his long career as an attorney, Andrew Cecere, who practiced in Richmond, never gave up on his dream of publishing a novel. And now, with two books released in his name within the last year, the 94-year-old can finally say his greatest dream has become reality.
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New Albany placing moratorium on opioid treatment facilities

November 8, 2016
 Associated Press
A southern Indiana community has decided to place a six-month moratorium on methadone or suboxone clinics.
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Madison County’s computers frozen by ransomware attack

November 7, 2016
 Associated Press
A so-called ransomware attack has left police, fire and other government staff in a central Indiana county locked out of their computers.
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Cities argue for dismissal of suit against human rights ordinances

November 3, 2016
Olivia Covington
During a nearly 4 ½-hour hearing in Hamilton Superior Court Wednesday, attorneys for the cities of Carmel, Indianapolis, Bloomington and Columbus argued before Judge Steven Nation that the lawsuit brought against their human rights ordinances should be dismissed because the case is not ripe for judgment and because the plaintiffs have no legal standing to bring the action.
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4 Indiana cities ask judge to dismiss LGBT protections suit

November 1, 2016
 Associated Press
Bloomington and three other Indiana cities have asked a Hamilton County judge to dismiss a lawsuit challenging local protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
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ACLU challenges Bedford sign ordinance limiting political expression

October 31, 2016
IL Staff
A Bedford man who was told he faced fines of $300 a day because of political signs he posted on his property has filed a federal lawsuit against the city with the backing of the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana.
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Fort Wayne changes law banning firearms from public parks

October 20, 2016
 Associated Press
The Fort Wayne City Council has approved changes to a city ordinance that bans firearms from city parks.
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Justices hear arguments in Lawrence wrongful-firing suit

October 20, 2016
Olivia Covington
After the newly elected mayor of the city of Lawrence fired him from his position as superintendent of the city Utility Services Board, counsel for Carlton Curry told the Indiana Supreme Court Thursday that the mayor had no legal right to terminate the former superintendent without actual cause.
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Bench, bar rally behind prosecutor facing discipline

October 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission brought a formal complaint against Johnson County Prosecutor Bradley Cooper for press comments attributed to him in reaction to a judge's grant of post-conviction relief for convicted murderer Michael Overstreet. A parade of character witnesses traveled to a distant hearing to rally behind Cooper.
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