State Rep. Jim Lucas (R-Seymour) pairs sneakers with his suit to help kick off National Cancer Prevention Month at the Statehouse in Indianapolis. He and others in the Indiana House of Representatives participated in the Suits and Sneakers Challenge to raise awareness. A cancer survivor, Lucas stresses the importance of following the American Cancer Society's recommended screenings.-Submitted Photo
Mayor Mike Ochs has announced that Gov. Eric Holcomb will travel to North Vernon on Saturday, June 6, to officially "cut the ribbon" on the city's innovative $5 million solar project, marking North Vernon as one of Indiana's greenest cities.
The ceremony will take place outdoors at Tripton Park's amphitheater and where the largest display of solar panels is just visible to the east at the city's wastewater treatment plant. The governor is expected to make a few remarks on the innovation needed to meet the state's increasing energy needs.
The city's decision in 2017 to power its various departments with solar has drawn attention statewide. Just recently, officials from Dearborn County visited North Vernon to learn more about the city's experience thus far and its energy savings. Shelbyville, Ind., is also currently undergoing its own transition to solar power thanks in large part to North Vernon's success story, according to officials.
The governor's visit here is just one of many activities planned that day as Tripton Park is formally celebrated as the city's newest and most complete playground for all ages. Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Officials with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service are looking for interested volunteers to help better protect residents of the Jennings County area by providing quality storm reports during severe weather.
Volunteers are always welcome at the Good Samaritan Food Pantry, even ones as high profile as U.S. Rep. Greg Pence.
The first-term 6th District Republican congressman from Columbus, who represents all of Jennings County, spent nearly two hours at the food pantry in North Vernon Friday morning where he helped carry in boxes full of canned goods, distributing items to shoppers and did other miscellaneous jobs.
"The main reason I'm here is to raise awareness and set an example so more people will support the food pantry," Pence said. "Nonprofits such as this one are vitally important to the Jennings County community. A lot of people here and everywhere need help with food, and it's up to those of us who can to provide that support."
Ginger Miller, Good Samaritan director, and other volunteers at the food pantry, were thankful.
"We can't thank Congressman Pence enough for taking time from his busy schedule to come help us today and for raising awareness," Miller said. Monday, February 24, 2020
For the second year in a row, young Joey Denny, of North Vernon, saved his Christmas money to purchase tennis balls to donate to Vampir and Axel, the two K-9s at with the Jennings County Sheriff's Office.
A project that came up "very quickly" was met with decisive action by the North Vernon Redevelopment Commission (NVRC or TIF board) on Friday, Feb. 14.
It was a sweet day for the Commission to hear that a 100 percent-owned local company was on the verge of a major breakthrough in its growth. Layman Fabrication, located at 3435 N. Fourth St., plans to construct a new facility, doubling its size and creating 15 new jobs by 2024.
The growth is the result of several factors which include an expansion of work among several clients, including one based near Chicago, and the company becoming a certified vendor for Honda North America in 2019. Layman Fabrication received its first contract with the automotive giant last month.
"Our new relationship with Honda will give us the opportunity to become one of their lead metal fabrication suppliers," according to information provided the Commission. Without the new facility and acreage, the company said it will be unable to complete the contract here in Jennings County.
Jennings County Economic Development Commission Director Kathy Ertel explained the proposal to the Commission was based on a plan to keep the company in Jennings County.
While the Jennings County 911 Emergency Dispatch Center handled slightly fewer incidents in 2019 than it did the year before, it wasn't because of a decrease in emergencies according to the center's end-of-year report released last week by director Britt Burgmeier.
When the Jennings County Board of Commissioners hold their regular semimonthly meeting Thursday, there will be no Second Amendment sanctuary resolution on the table.
When Sheriff Kenny Freeman, North Vernon Mayor Mike Ochs and State Rep. Jim Lucas signed the resolution declaring Jennings as a Second Amendment sanctuary county on Jan. 17, Freeman said he was considering introducing the measure for the commissioners to consider at their Feb. 13 meeting.
Now, Freeman says, he won't.
"I don't think it's necessary to bring it up to the commissioners," the sheriff said.
Whether the resolution has any legal authority is probably a matter of judicial interpretation. The resolution calls for local law enforcement personnel to uphold the Second Amendment and not enforce any new gun control measures enacted after Jan. 17. Many legal experts, however, say federal and state laws always supersede county laws.
Matt Sporleder, president of the Board of Commissioners, says he is relieved he and fellow commissioners Dave Lane and Bob Willhite will not be addressing the issue at Thursday's meeting.
"The way I understand it, we couldn't have signed it the way the resolution was written," Sporleder said.
Nevertheless, Freeman says he feels good about the resolution. (2 comments) Monday, February 10, 2020