Interstate 65 lanes to shut down tonight for paving

May 24, 2017 61

The Indiana Department of Transportation will be limiting travel lanes on Interstate 65 tonight between Whiteland and Franklin.

They will be shutting down the left two lanes in both the northbound and southbound direction starting at 8 p.m. tonight. That will last until 6 a.m. when they will reopen one of the lanes.

Crews will be paving the shoulders in that area.

Wanted man charged with giving fake name

May 24, 2017 92

Nathan Ingram. Photo courtesy of Columbus Police Department.

Columbus police say that a wanted man was arrested after allegedly giving police a fake name.

Officers were called to a hotel on Jonathan Moore Pike at about 9 a.m. Tuesday morning on a report of a suspicious man walking in the area. The man originally gave police a fake name, but he was identified as 27-year-old Nathan F. Ingram, who was wanted on three Bartholomew County warrants, according to police reports.

While searching him before taking him to jail, police allegedly found a syringe and a glass smoking pipe in his pants pockets. In addition to the warrants, he was arrested on preliminary charges of possession of a legend drug injection device and paraphernalia.

Shop in Fair Oaks Mall raided by state excise police

May 23, 2017 198

EDIT: This story has been updated after we spoke with state officials.

Indiana State Excise Police Officers raided a shop this week in a Columbus mall, seizing candies and other items with a marijuana-derived oil. Authorities also also allegedly found a small amount of marijuana in the Nirvana shop, located in the Fair Oaks Mall on 25th Street.

Authorities say that officers executed a search warrant at the shop at around 12:20 p.m. on Monday. There, officers say they seized several cannabidiol oil products, including liquid and gummy bears. State officials say the business was cited administratively against its tobacco certificate on preliminary charges of Being a Public Nuisance, Possession of Marijuana and Possession of a Counterfeit Controlled Substance.

Excise police say that while at the business, enough evidence was gathered to obtain a search warrant for the home of the owner, Tulsidas G. Narsinghani. Authorities arrived at his Lapwing Drive at approximately 4:50 p.m. on Monday. There, they allegedly found, and seized, several cannabidiol oil products, paper documents, drug paraphernalia, a small amount of suspected marijuana and over $20,000 in cash.

Indiana State Excise Police say that Monday’s raid comes after action taken earlier this month against Nirvana. On May 13th, officials say the business was cited on preliminary administrative charges of Possession of unauthorized E-liquid, Public Nuisance to Wit: Possession of Throwing Stars and Failure to Display Tobacco Certificate.

Authorities say that no arrests were made. They add that a report will be submitted to the Bartholomew County Prosecutor’s Office for review.


Messer praises President’s plan to cut tax-credits to illegals

May 23, 2017 59

Congressman Luke Messer, a Republican representing Indiana’s Sixth Congressional District, is praising President Trump’s budget blueprint. That plan, released Tuesday, includes a proposal to close a loophole that allows billions of dollars in Child Tax Credits to be claimed by illegal aliens, a measure that Messer has been calling for for some time. The Congressman filed legislation in January urging Trump to take similar action.

“Hoosiers are tired of our broken tax and immigration systems that reward people who come here illegally,” Messer said. “Federal tax benefits should go to low and middle-income American families who work hard and play by the rules, not to those who break them. I applaud President Trump’s efforts to protect U.S. taxpayers by stopping this fraud.”

Messer’s office says that President Trump’s budget would ensure that only taxpayers with a valid Social Security Number can claim the Child Tax Credit, which allows families to claim a $1,000 tax credit per child. Currently, those in the United States illegally can claim this benefit without a Social Security Number by using an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. Those numbers are issued to people, regardless of immigration status.

Rep. Messer cites a 2014 Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration report estimating that between $5.9 and $7.1 billion was being paid out every year to illegal immigrants and individuals illegally claiming children. A 2011 report estimated that $4.2 billion was going just to illegal aliens.

INDOT announces SR 46 closures for Salute! Concert

May 23, 2017 58

State Road 46 between Franklin and Brown Streets in Columbus will be closed for Friday’s Salute! Concert. The Indiana Department of Transportation issued the permit to help with traffic flow for the show, being held on the lawn of the Bartholomew County courthouse.

INDOT says that, beginning at 5:30 p.m. Friday, drivers will be routed from eastbound State Road 46/Second Street to First Street. The south lane of westbound State Road 46/Third Street will also close at that time. Restrictions should be lifted by 11 p.m.

The annual concert performed by the Columbus Philharmonic Orchestra honors those who serve or have served in the United States Armed Forces. This year’s free show begins at 7 p.m. and features Grammy Award-winning vocalist Sylvia McNair.

Beaches closed at Monroe Lake for holiday

May 23, 2017 155

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources is announcing that you won’t be able to go to the beach at Monroe Lake on Memorial Day.

That’s because the beaches at Paynetown and Fairfax state recreation areas are underwater.

The Army Corps has been releasing water from the dam as part of their flood control efforts, but it won’t drop in time for the holiday. IDNR says that the primary purpose of Monroe Lake is flood control along lower Salt Creek and recreation comes second.

Toddler struck by truck and killed in Westport

May 23, 2017 130

A two-year-old girl was struck and killed by a pickup last night in Westport.

Indiana State Police are reporting that the accident happened at about 9 p.m. Monday night on State Road 3 near Main Street. Police say that 2-year-old Lena Snowden entered the street from the Pine Lake Apartments, moving into the path of the truck being driven by 45-year-old David C. Vanderbur of Greensburg.

The little girl was pronounced dead at the scene. State Road 3 was closed down for about two hours after the crash.

Indiana State Police were assisted at the scene of the crash by the Decatur County Sheriff’s Department, Westport Police Department, Westport Fire Department, Decatur County EMS, Decatur County Coroner’s Office and the Department of Child Services.

INDOT plans to widen I-65; seeks your thoughts

May 23, 2017 73

The Indiana Department of Transportation wants your thoughts on a plan to add lanes to Interstate 65 between Columbus and Seymour.

The agency will hold two public meetings early next month looking for comments on the plan. The $143 million dollar project would widen and update the 14 miles of the interstate, adding traffic lanes between U.S. 50 in Seymour and State Road 58 in the Walesboro area. It would also rehabilitate seven overpass bridges.

They will be holding public meetings at Columbus City Hall on June 7th, and at the Brownstown Town Hall on June 8th. Both meetings will start at 6 p.m. with a presentation on the plan.

Edinburgh to see railroad closings next week

May 23, 2017 53

The work to add new rails to the Louisville and Indiana railroad line through Bartholomew County is ongoing and pretty soon that work will be in the town of Edinburgh.

The town is warning of closings, starting on Wednesday, May 31st going through Thursday, June 1st as crews replace the tracks. Each intersection will have to be closed twice, first on one side of an intersection and then again as they replace the other side of the rails.

The town says that railroad crossings should only be closed for a few hours at a time and that the work should not be going on at night.

Among the affected streets and roads:

  • County Road 900N
  • County Line Rd.
  • Perry St.
  • Thompson St.
  • Main Cross St.
  • Naomi St.
  • County Road 700E
  • County Road 650S
  • County Road 775E

The city will have a detour set up through Center Cross Street, or State Road 252.

And all of this work is dependent on the weather.

Messer to serve on task force targeting government overreach

May 22, 2017 98

Rep. Luke Messer, a Republican representing Indiana’s Sixth Congressional District, was appointed by House Speaker Paul Ryan to serve on the recently created bipartisan Task Force on Intergovernmental Affairs. The group is charged with working to restore the proper balance of power between federal, state and local governments.

Messer is among seven Republican House members appointed to the 13-member Task Force.

“Indiana has proven time and again that the best government is closest to the people it serves,” Messer said. “Our states, cities and counties are the true engine for innovation in government. I’m excited to work on this Task Force to combat federal overreach and return power to states.”

Messer’s office say the Task Force will partner with state and local governments to determine where the federal government has overstepped, and come up with solutions to return control to states and local entities. The Task Force will also provide a forum for states, cities, and counties to showcase innovation and creativity in solving public policy problems.

“Federalism is not a Republican or Democrat principle, but an American principle—and one that is integral to a thriving culture and economy,” Speaker Ryan said. “But in recent years, the principle of federalism has been slowly chipped away at by an overzealous federal government. Under Chairman Bishop’s leadership, the Task Force on Intergovernmental Affairs will study ways to restore the proper balance of power between the federal government and states, tribal, and local governments, and eliminate unnecessary regulatory burdens facing communities across the nation.”