Government

Feds probe Indianapolis police shooting of black driver

July 11, 2017
 Associated Press
Federal investigators are going to review last month’s fatal shooting of unarmed black driver Aaron Bailey by Indianapolis police officers.
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Hawaii takes another shot at Trump's travel ban

July 10, 2017
 Associated Press
Hawaii has returned to federal court with a new motion in its challenge to Trump administration travel ban rules regarding citizens from six majority Muslim countries.
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Indiana prosecutor creates documentary warning of drug use

July 7, 2017
 Associated Press
A southern Indiana prosecutor is showing all middle school and high school students in his county a documentary video in an attempt to discourage heroin use among youth.
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Indiana joins amicus brief defending Congressional Review Act

July 6, 2017
Olivia Covington
Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill has added his name to a list of 14 state attorneys general voicing their support for the Congressional Review Act, saying the act protects the sovereignty of the states and provides them with a mechanism for relief from federal agency overreach.
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Lawyer in gay marriage case joins Indiana congressional race

July 6, 2017
 Associated Press
An attorney who led the lawsuit that overturned Kentucky's gay marriage ban wants the Democratic nomination to challenge first-term Republican U.S. Rep. Trey Hollingsworth for his southern Indiana seat in 2018.
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States sue over EPA's decision to keep Dow Agro pesticide on market

July 6, 2017
 Associated Press
Several states are seeking to join a legal challenge to a Trump administration decision to keep a widely used pesticide sold by Indianapolis-based Dow AgroSciences on the market, despite studies showing it can harm children's brains.
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Influential lawmaker Kenley retiring from Indiana Senate

July 5, 2017
Indianapolis Business Journal
State Sen. Luke Kenley, R-Noblesville, on Wednesday announced that he will retire on Sept. 30 after serving Senate District 20 since 1992.
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Sheriff starts group to deal with overcrowded county jails

July 5, 2017
 Associated Press
An Indiana sheriff says state lawmakers must address the issue of overcrowded and understaffed county jails.
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Indiana will likely go to court over online sales tax

July 5, 2017
 Associated Press
Indiana lawmakers passed a law this spring claiming the state has a right to collect sales taxes from companies using only online transactions. But a 25-year-old U.S. Supreme Court case prohibits states from collecting sales tax from businesses unless they've got a physical presence in the state.
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Monarch loses federal challenge seeking to wholesale liquor

July 5, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
Indianapolis-based Monarch Beverage Co.’s attempt to obtain a wholesale liquor permit rests with the Indiana Supreme Court after its federal challenge to Indiana law was rejected by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Friday.
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More court challenges expected for Trump's new travel ban

June 30, 2017
 Associated Press
A scaled-back version of President Donald Trump's travel ban is now in force, stripped of provisions that brought protests and chaos at airports worldwide in January yet still likely to generate a new round of court fights.
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Justice Department gives up Washington Redskins name fight

June 30, 2017
 Associated Press
The Justice Department is giving up the legal fight over the name of the Washington Redskins.
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Trump commission on voting fraud asks states for voter data

June 30, 2017
 Associated Press, IL Staff
President Donald Trump's commission investigating alleged voter fraud in the 2016 elections has asked states for a list of the names, party affiliations, addresses and voting histories of all voters, if state law allows it to be public. Indiana and several other states have said they won't give data to the panel.
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Citizens Action Coalition sues for state records on Carrier deal

June 30, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
A complaint filed Friday in Marion County by Citizens Action Coalition alleges that the governor’s office has violated the Indiana Access to Public Records Act by not providing the grass-roots consumer group documents it wants about Vice President and former Gov. Mike Pence’s communications involving Carrier Corp. and United Technologies.
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Holcomb bars criminal history question for most state job applicants

June 29, 2017
IL Staff
Applicants for state jobs in the executive branch will no longer be asked if they have ever been arrested or convicted of a crime.
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7th Circuit: Nightingale must defend Medicare restitution claims

June 28, 2017
Dave Stafford
A Carmel-based home health care company stripped of its certification to receive Medicare funding in Indiana will return to the district court in Indianapolis to defend against government claims seeking nearly $5 million in restitution.
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Hamilton County Jail adds re-entry, jobs program

June 28, 2017
Indianapolis Business Journal, Carley Lanich
The jail’s five-week Transitioning Opportunities for Work, Education, and Reality program, known as TOWER, began in April as a partnership with a state WorkOne Center to provide resources for soon-to-be-released inmates. The goal is to reduce the rate of inmates’ returning to the county jail.
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Legal fight over Indiana's anti-political robocall law ends

June 28, 2017
 Associated Press
A Chicago-based veterans advocacy group's seven-year struggle to strike down Indiana's ban on political robocalls has ended with the U.S. Supreme Court declining to review a lower-court ruling upholding the law.
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Treatment seen as antidote for opioid crisis

June 28, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Legislature approved several measures to expand recovery programs and prevent spread of opioid epidemic.
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Rewrite of business organization laws provides uniformity, clarity

June 28, 2017
Dave Stafford
All it took to simplify Indiana’s business organization laws was a 149-page bill.
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Scopelitis: HB 1002 balances higher trucking fees, infrastructure help

June 28, 2017
The trucking industry, a vital part of the state’s economy, had a special interest in House Bill 1002, both because the state looked to the industry to bear a significant share of the funding and because the industry relies on well maintained, free-flowing roads.
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New data reporting law aims to aid anti-recidivism efforts

June 28, 2017
Olivia Covington
As Indiana continues its efforts to curb offender recidivism, a new bill set to take effect next month will put more requirements on offender treatment and rehabilitation programs to offer insights into the anti-recidivism methods that work.
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New laws for 2017

June 28, 2017
IL Staff
Indiana’s legislators passed more than250 new laws on topics including e-liquid reform, inheritance tax repeals, and overhaul of uniform business organization laws.
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Children’s commission’s annual report sets 3-year plan

June 26, 2017
IL Staff
The Commission on Improving the Status of Children in Indiana has set a three-year plan emphasizing child safety and services, juvenile justice, mental health, substance abuse and educational outcomes as key priorities.
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Pharmakon owner, compliance director face criminal charges

June 22, 2017
Indianapolis Business Journal
The owner and the director of compliance for Noblesville-based Pharmakon Pharmaceuticals Inc. have been charged with multiple criminal counts related to the sale of compounded painkillers that were as much as 25 times more potent than they should have been, the Department of Justice announced Thursday.
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  1. The appellate court just said doctors can be sued for reporting child abuse. The most dangerous form of child abuse with the highest mortality rate of any form of child abuse (between 6% and 9% according to the below listed studies). Now doctors will be far less likely to report this form of dangerous child abuse in Indiana. If you want to know what this is, google the names Lacey Spears, Julie Conley (and look at what happened when uninformed judges returned that child against medical advice), Hope Ybarra, and Dixie Blanchard. Here is some really good reporting on what this allegation was: http://media.star-telegram.com/Munchausenmoms/ Here are the two research papers: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213487900810 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213403000309 25% of sibling are dead in that second study. 25%!!! Unbelievable ruling. Chilling. Wrong.

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  3. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  4. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

  5. From the article's fourth paragraph: "Her work underscores the blurry lines in Russia between the government and businesses . . ." Obviously, the author of this piece doesn't pay much attention to the "blurry lines" between government and businesses that exist in the United States. And I'm not talking only about Trump's alleged conflicts of interest. When lobbyists for major industries (pharmaceutical, petroleum, insurance, etc) have greater access to this country's elected representatives than do everyday individuals (i.e., voters), then I would say that the lines between government and business in the United States are just as blurry, if not more so, than in Russia.

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