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IVY TECH HOSTING PREVIEW DAY 

Ivy Tech Community College’s Logansport Campus will open its doors Sept. 25 to give prospective students and interested area residents a chance to see the many opportunities it offers for personal and career advancement.

The “Go Ivy Day” event is set for 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 25, at the campus at 1 Ivy Tech Way. The event will include campus tours; an opportunity to meet faculty, staff and students; and a look at the programs and courses offered at the Logansport Campus. Visitors will be able to learn about free services offered to support student success as well as transfer options with Ivy Tech’s four-year partners. It’s part of Indiana’s ‘College GO! Week’ when high school students around the state have the opportunity to take time out of their class day to make college visits. Advisers also will be on hand to provide assistance for filing for financial aid.

To add your name to the visitor list, call 574-753-5101. Parents are welcome to attend.
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BMV REFUNDS COMING FOR SOME 

The Commissioner of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) announced yesterday that the BMV has determined that some customers are entitled to excise tax refunds. The BMV will work with the Indiana Department of Revenue to issue those refunds.
According to the BMV, some vehicles were misclassified for excise tax purposes. As a result, those customers overpaid excise taxes when registering their vehicles. These misclassifications stretch back to 2004 when the BMV’s System Tracking and Record Support (STARS) computer system was implemented on a limited basis. Under Indiana law, vehicles are placed in a tax classification based on value. This value is determined by using the price of the vehicle and applying an adjustment factor based upon Consumer Price Index data related to increases in new automobile prices. This data is entered into the BMV’s STARS system in order to automatically calculate excise taxes when vehicles are registered. In some circumstances, the STARS system did not apply the adjustment factor, which caused some vehicles to be misclassified.

All previously misclassified vehicles will be reclassified using the proper data. Anyone who overpaid will be notified by mail and provided a pre-printed claim form, per Indiana law, to obtain a refund with interest. Hoosiers affected by this miscalculation can expect to receive a letter within about 30 days,”
While final data is not yet available, it is believed that about 180,000 individuals were affected by this miscalculation, and the total refund is about $29 million plus interest.
The BMV distributes excise taxes to county and local governments on a regular basis. To mitigate the impact to local governments, the state will cover the upfront cost of refunds to taxpayers and will recoup the overpayment by adjusting distributions to local governments over the next two years. Additionally, the state will cover all interest payments.

Governor Mike Pence authorized BMV Commissioner Don Snemis to hire an independent consulting firm to audit the BMV’s processes, procedures and STARS system.
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VOTER DEADLINES APPROACHING 

Some important deadlines are approaching related to the November general election. Applications for absentee ballots by mail or travel board are available through the Cass County Clerk’s office or online at co.cass.in.us. Applications to vote by mail must be returned by Monday, Oct. 27. Travel board applications will be accepted through noon on Nov. 3.

October 6 is the last day to register to vote in the November 4 general election. Voting in the garage at the Cass County Government Building will begin on Tuesday, Oct. 7 and will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.

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NEW AMBULANCE TO SERVE CASS COUNTY 

The Cass County Commissioners signed a 30 day contract with a new ambulance service yesterday - a move they said would allow them to negotiate the details of a longer-term contract without interrupting ambulance service to the community. Prompt Ambulance will start providing services at midnight tonight. The county's current provider, Rural/Metro, notified the commissioners last month that it would be terminating its agreement for services effective Sept. 18, 2014.

Sailors said the county commissioners had been working with another company and had facilitated a buildout on High Street to accommodate their equipment, but ultimately went with Prompt, a company he said the City of Logansport and Logansport Memorial Hospital had been talking with.

Sailors said Prompt will provide ambulance service to Cass County through the end of the year at no charge. The county spent $34,000 completing renovations for a facility in a county-owned property at 516 High Street.

Nathaniel Metz, director of Prompt Ambulance Central and talks about the company’s history.

He says the company operates in Jasper County, Frankfort and a thirteen county region that now includes Cass County. "We will be providing 911 services," he said. "We also have an ALS (advanced life support) ambulance that we are staffing at Logansport Memorial Hospital for their acute transfers.
Metz said the service will employ local people.

"Absolutely … Our kind of concept is that Prompt Medical Serices is one of the larger ambulance services in the state but we're just here to supply resources," Metz said. "We want to come in, bring in our systems, bring in local people and have them operate their own EMS system, just with the ability of having our resources. We have some of the most advanced systems in the state as far as navigation and we're always on the forefront of that stuff. So we can bring all that stuff in, educate the individuals how to use it to the best of their ability and have them operate it."

Jim Sailors, president of the Cass County Commissioners, said there will be 2 ambulances and the Logansport Fire Department has its ambulance as well.
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GRANT OPPORTUNITY FOR NONPROFITS 

Miami Correctional Facility is soliciting applications from not-for-profit agencies/charities (Section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code) within Miami, Cass and Howard counties for grant monies from the “Community Involvement Fund”.



The money for the grant comes from the facility’s “Fresh Favorites” sales to the offenders. The Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC) contract with Aramark, which provides offender food services, has an addendum which allows for five percent of the net profits from the sale of “Fresh Favorites” food to be put into a “Community Involvement” fund and to be given away to the community.



Fresh Favorites is a special menu of items offered to the offenders for a price. Along with the Community Involvement monies, 12.5 percent of those sales go back to the offenders via the Recreation Fund. Every IDOC facility using Aramark Food Services will receive this 5 percent and each gets to determine how they want to spend it to benefit the community.



MCF has put together a committee to review applications from the community. The amount of the grants will be determined by the amount of funds available. Applicants must fill out an application, which is available by emailing Ann Hubbard at ahubbard@idoc.in.gov; or Robin Burton, at rmburton@idoc.in.gov. The application will be sent via email.



Applications are due by Friday, Oct. 17, 2014, to be considered for this round of funding. The funds will be dispersed in October.
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RESPIRATORY ILLNESS INCREASE IN INDIANA 

The Indiana State Department of Health says hospitals statewide are reporting an increase in the number of patients with respiratory illnesses, especially in children. It is not yet known if the increase is related to the recent surge of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) infections that have been seen in surrounding states including Missouri, Ohio, Illinois, Kentucky and others.

Enteroviruses are very common --there are more than 100 types -- with 10 to 15 million cases occurring in the United States each year. Three individuals in Northern Indiana have recently tested positive for enterovirus/rhinovirus (rhinovirus is the common cold) by the State Laboratory. Further testing is needed to determine if the cases are EV-D68.

Typically, EV-D68 causes upper respiratory illness, such as low-grade fever, cough, runny nose, sneezing and body/muscle aches. Infected individuals generally recover on their own without incident by treating symptoms. However, some individuals, especially those with weakened immune systems or underlying medical conditions, such as asthma, may experience severe complications and require hospitalization with supportive therapy.

Enteroviruses, including EV-D68, are spread through close contact with infected people, so people are reminded to wash hands frequently, cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze and prevent spreading illness to others by staying home if you’re sick.

Individuals experiencing cold-like symptoms and trouble breathing should contact their healthcare provider right away.
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VOLUNTEERS NEEDED IN ROYAL CENTER 

Diann and Caleb Sedam, 2014 co-chairs for Royal Center’s Live United Day, are seeking volunteers for eight projects on FridaySeptember 19. Projects include trail clean up at the Pan Handle Pathway, the installation of two wheel chair ramps for senior citizens, the installation of a wheel chair ramp at the Royal Center Library, a cleanup and landscaping project at Pioneer Elementary School, and a sidewalk installation. Two additional projects include Pioneer High and the Pioneer Elementary Schools’ collections of nonperishable food donations for their back pack programs. Nonperishable food donations may be taken to the schools on Live United Day, Friday September 19.

Royal Center’s Live United Day kick-off is Friday September 19 at 8 am at the Royal Center United Methodist Church’s Family Life Center. A free lunch for volunteers will be served at the Family Life Center on that day. For more information, visit the United Way of Cass County’s website or call 573-753-3533.
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PLAN FOR LEXINGTON VILLAGE APPROVED 

The master plan for development of a neighborhood called Lexington Village was approved last night by the Logansport plan commission. Several people attended an open house Sunday night to hear more about the plan from Larry Dillin, who talks about how he got involved with the project to redevelop the area near the Logansport Mall.

“The city sought me out because of some past experience that I’ve had with similar kinds of projects,” Dillin said.

Dillin talks about his role in Lexington Village.

“What is listed in the PUD is a master developer on the application and that’s me,” Dillin said. “So, on the architechtural review committee, i would work with the planning department to make decisions on applications that come forward for individual projects to review them against the standards, make sure they’re compliant or not compliant, so that’s the role.”

Planning director Arin Shaver talks about the master plan for the area.

“This is just a plan in place to have it set up appropriately so that when we get people that want to come in we can design it to then basically communicate to each other property that it may come close to that there’s some connectivity between them.”

Larry Dillin explains how the plan was developed.

“What we’ve done is, from the charrette that we had in April, we’ve taken everything that we’ve heard from the community and put together a plan that we think is responsive to that, with retail uses, commercial uses, residential uses, connecting them all together inside this planning area. And then, we’ve written design standards and signage standards for application just within the boundaries of the area, and then we’ve created an architectural review committee to control the implementation of that program as it goes forward, so that anybody that wants to create something new in the planning area, they have follow these standards or it can’t get approved.”

Both Dillin and Shaver indicated this is an early step in the process of developing Lexington Village.

“There will be a whole marketing cycle for this,” Dillin said. “Once property control is established, why then the true marketing effort can begin. But putting the controls in place, it’s absolutely paramount that the controls be in place first, before development comes, so you can control the development when it does show up.”

Now, the master plan moves to the Logansport City Council for approval.
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FREE HUNTER ED COURSE 

Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo Region is offering the Indiana Hunter Education Course Sept. 13 and 14 in Tipton and Sept. 20 and 21 in Kokomo. The program is offered without charge and registrations are now being accepted.

Anyone born after Dec. 31, 1986, is required to be certified in hunter education by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources before he or she can purchase a hunting license. To pass the
class, students must attend the entire session on both days.

• In Tipton, the class will meet at Ivy Tech’s outreach facility, 221 N. Main St., Tipton, on Saturday, Sept. 13, from 8 a.m. to noon and Sunday, Sept. 14, from noon to 6 p.m. with Indiana Conservation Officer Brad Robins.

• In Kokomo, the class will meet at the Kokomo Event & Conference Center, 1500 N. Reed Road (Ind. 931), on Saturday, Sept. 20, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 21, from noon to 4 p.m. with Indiana Conservation Officer William Dale III and several volunteer instructors including John Martino and Denny Heaton.

Martino said anyone interested in the outdoors can benefit from the course because of the range of information shared. This Indiana Hunter Education Course will cover the following:

• Safe firearm use and handling while hunting, as well as in the home

• Hunter ethics and responsibilities

• Wildlife identification

• Conservation management

Although there is no age requirement for attendees, the class is more suited for those older than 10 as all students must score at least 70 percent on the 100-question final exam to qualify. Children

younger than 11 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at every session. Also, at the first session, everyone younger than 18 must submit a completed liability release form. The form, which can be found through the link below, must be signed by the child’s parent or guardian.

To register, go to ivytech.edu/kokomo and click on the “Hunter Education” link in the index on the left side of the page. For additional information, contact Conservation Officer District 4
headquarters at (765) 649-1062 or John Martino at (765) 459-0561, ext. 734.
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FOOD HUB SURVEY UNDERWAY 

The Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) is exploring a new way of distributing specialty crops in a continued effort to identify effective means of meeting increasing consumer demand. Specialty crops are defined as fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, and horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture.

Consumers who shop regularly for specialty crops are invited to participate in the study by taking a short online survey to lend more insight into the potential value of ‘food hubs’ in Indiana (see link: www.surveymonkey.com/s/IndianaFoodHubSurvey).

Food hubs, gaining popularity as consumer demand and production of specialty crops increases, are local organizations that streamline the process of getting these products from farm to table. While specialty crops are primarily distributed through grocery stores, farmers markets, wholesalers, co-ops or community supported agriculture programs (CSAs), the ISDA’s current Feasibility Study for Food Hubs in Indiana aims to assess the needs of growers and consumers to determine if a statewide network of regional food hubs will be effective.

“This study will further enhance Indiana’s reputation as being an agricultural leader across the nation, as well as increase the awareness of locally-based specialty crops to Hoosier consumers,” said ISDA Director Ted McKinney.

Knowledge of food hubs is not required for consumer participation in the ongoing survey, which focuses on the types of specialty crops that consumers are buying and their likelihood of purchasing from a variety of sources.
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