State agencies

Divided COA: Man can't use RFRA to avoid taxes

January 13, 2017
Olivia Covington
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday that a Marion County man cannot avoid paying income taxes using a religious freedom defense, with the majority writing that the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act allows for the collection of taxes in the furtherance of a compelling government interest.
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Indiana health commissioner: Needle exchanges a success

January 12, 2017
 Associated Press
Indiana's health commissioner told lawmakers needle exchanges were effective in combating the state's worst-ever HIV outbreak.
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COA upholds dismissal of fired DOT employee’s untimely petition for review

December 29, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
A former employee of the Indiana Department of Transportation, who was fired in 2013, untimely filed his petition for judicial review after he was unsuccessful in his administrative appeals and the trial court correctly dismissed his petition, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed Thursday.
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Critics decry Pence team for letting state fair stage collapse rule expire

December 28, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
The Pence administration has let expire the emergency rule put in place after the 2011 Indiana State Fair stage collapse that left seven people dead and dozens injured.
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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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COA affirms dismissal of case due to res judicata

December 2, 2016
Olivia Covington
Res judicata prevents a title insurance company from taking a “second bite” at the apple, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday, in a case in which the company appealed dismissal of its second attempt to challenge an action by the Indiana Department of Insurance.
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High court takes alcohol wholesaler case

November 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that could decide whether beer and wine wholesalers can also be legally permitted to sell liquor in Indiana.
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Tax Court allows University of Phoenix to depose former revenue commissioner

November 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The University of Phoenix Inc. can depose the former commissioner of the Indiana Department of State Revenue in a case related to the school’s income taxes after the Indiana Tax Court found that the former commissioner did not warrant a protective order to prevent him from testifying.
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COA panel takes oral arguments to Notre Dame

November 1, 2016
IL Staff
A panel of the Indiana Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments Wednesday at the University of Notre Dame Law School.
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AG files for emergency stay in case against beer wholesaler

November 1, 2016
IL Staff
The state is fighting a court order that would require it to grant a wholesaler permit to Spirited Sales LLC, a company affiliated with Monarch Beverage that wants to sell liquor.
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Indiana official clarifies voter registration fraud probe

October 20, 2016
 Associated Press
After initially warning of potential widespread voting fraud, Indiana's secretary of state has acknowledged that many of the thousands of altered registration records she flagged might just be residents rushing to correct their names or birth dates ahead of the election.
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Secretary of State: Altered voter registrations raise concerns

October 19, 2016
 Associated Press
Thousands of voter registrations were altered, raising concerns about possible fraud, says Indiana's chief elections official, whose office warned voters to check whether their information is correct online and encouraged voting early to avoid problems on Election Day.
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Legislative group delays action on ALJ panels to retain subject-matter expertise

October 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
Perceived bias of administrative law judges in favor of the state agencies for which they adjudicate disputes has led to calls for Indiana to join 30 other states that have moved to central panels of ALJs to give them more independence. But that won’t happen anytime soon, a General Assembly study committee decided.
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COA prevents INDOT from seeking more than $100k in damages after bridge accident

October 18, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed the denial of summary judgment for the Indiana Department of Transportation after the department had argued that it should be allowed to seek the more than $100,000 it spent to repair a state bridge damaged in an accident, an amount that was double the estimated cost.
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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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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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Lawyers blast bias in ALJ system; urge technical adjudicators remain

September 22, 2016
Dave Stafford
Lawyers who practice before Indiana administrative law judges painted a picture Wednesday of a rigged, onerous system that overwhelmingly favors the government when parties appeal state agency actions.
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Lake Michigan private, public land rights clash before COA

September 21, 2016
Dave Stafford
Long Beach, Indiana, is at the center of a landmark dispute between public access and private property rights to the Indiana shore of Lake Michigan.
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Both sides of liquor fight say it’s about fairness

September 12, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
The state is appealing an Aug. 24 ruling in favor of Spirited Sales LLC, a Monarch affiliate, that Spirited Sales is entitled to a liquor permit, a decision that other liquor distributors hope is stayed until the appellate court rules.
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Flood victims consider suing state, county and South Bend

September 9, 2016
 Associated Press
Flood victims in the South Bend area are considering filing a lawsuit against the state, county and city.
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I-69 developer's missed payments ignites dispute

September 8, 2016
 Associated Press
A southern Indiana mayor blamed Republican Gov. Mike Pence's administration on Wednesday for allowing a private developer to fall behind in payments to subcontractors, leading to a work stoppage on a new section of the Interstate 69 extension project.
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FSSA employees face individual claims for day care registration revocation

August 31, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
Two employees of the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration will face individual-capacity claims brought by a religious day care whose registration was revoked without providing for some type of hearing, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held Tuesday.
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Emails show state staffers rooting against Monarch's liquor battle

August 29, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
Monarch Beverage Co.’s attempts to enter the liquor business over the past decade were frequently met with displeasure from staffers in the Indiana Governor’s Office and at the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission, according to private emails brought to light by a recent court case involving a Monarch affiliate.
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Monarch affiliate gets big win in effort to sell liquor

August 26, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
A Marion County Superior Court judge has ruled in favor of a Monarch Beverage Co. affiliate called Spirited Sales LLC in its quest to gain a permit to wholesale liquor, a win in Monarch’s years-long effort to enter the spirits business.
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Regulators OK final settlement over controversial Edwardsport plant

August 25, 2016
John Russell, IBJ Staff
A bitter, costly fight over who will pay for Duke Energy’s $3.5 billion coal-gasification plant, one of the most expensive projects in Indiana history, is finally over.
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  1. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  2. 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!!!

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

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