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Monday, July 23, 2018
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  • Thursday, July 19, 2018 8:09 PM
    Dear Editor,
    Country living. It’s a way of life for country folks to know and understand what’s happening in the country. A few years ago, by knocking on doors in all areas of Montgomery County, I found:
    1. There is a small group in the northeast area of the North unit and a small group near Darlington in favor of zoning. I know most of them and hope friends, just have a difference of opinion.
    2. South unit. From what I was told door to door, I feel the South unit is strictly against zoning.
    Commissioner John Frey is working on and speaking about the comprehensive plan. He says it’s about what the citizens of this community want Montgomery County to look like down the road. Is this really the community’s thoughts or yours John? I have not heard any citizen express joy because of the comprehensive plan.
    After completion of the comprehensive plan what’s next? Zoning? I would think yes. Commissioner John Frey is in favor of and promoting zoning.
    To prove this, Commissioner Frey called and then texted instructing that person to fill out a petition to stand a land use ordinance (zoning). The petition is on file at the courthouse. It has 28 names, one twice, and signatures dated the seventh month of 2017, one year ago.
    A statement in the petition reads, this petition includes the support of our commissioner John Frey and “assurance” that we will have participation and his support.
    0 comment(s)
  • Friday, July 13, 2018 8:27 PM
    Dear Sen. Boots:
    The Hoosier State Press Association thanks you for supporting S.E.A. 392. The bill signed into law on March 21 by Gov. Eric Holcomb contains language that guarantees Hoosiers can obtain electronic records (such as Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, or Adobe pdfs) in that format from state and local government units. The records can be emailed to the requester with no copying fee involved.
    Under the existing Access to Public Records Act, a public official could decide to only provide a printed copy of such a record and require the requester to come to the agency office and pay a copying fee for the record.
    S.E.A. 392 also clarifies items county commissioners and town boards can discuss in “administrative functions” meetings. Existing Open Door Law language outlines what can’t be done, but doesn’t give much direction as to what can be discussed.
    An administrative function meeting can be held without providing the public 48 hours notice of such a meeting. It’s not practical to require a 48-hour wait before the county commissioners could react to a broken heating system or other maintenance need. The public still has the right to observe and record administrative function meetings – only the notice provision is waived under the Open Door Law.
    0 comment(s)
  • Friday, July 13, 2018 8:24 PM
    Dear Editor,
    The biggest seller that the windmill representatives are trying to use to get signed leases is “money”. “Sign a lease to put up a turbine on your property and we’ll give you thousands of dollars every year in return!” Sounds a little too good to be true, doesn’t it? Like, what’s the catch? Well, you would be right in the fact that it is too good to be true and there are many catches to having windmills in Montgomery County. Let’s shed some light on a few, shall we?
    First, those leasing their land to build turbines: they’re in it for the money. Nothing else. They aren’t thinking about their community, fellow human beings, wildlife or about the environment. They are just blinded by the almighty dollar sign. What they fail to acknowledge is that fact that the so called promised money that they are so eager to get their greedy hands on might not ever come at all! Let me lay out the process for you: you sign a lease, turbine goes up, you expect your money and boom! Wind company declares bankruptcy and you are left with nothing but a towering structure that you must then either maintain or take down, both at your own expense. 
    Second, a single wind turbine affects it’s surrounding area for miles. Oh, I’m not just talking about how it affects property rights/ lines right next to it. I’m also including the towns, schools, houses, businesses and wildlife a “Oh but I live in town. Wind turbines won’t affect me at all and it won‘t be in my backyard” There is some truth to that statement. Yes, it won’t affect you to the point of being in your backyard, however, it does affect your family, neighbors, and community. I’ve yet to meet a single person who wants to move into a house that has a turbine in their backyard or have their children attend a school that’s close to a turbine and be exposed to possible negative health effects. If you don’t want a turbine in your own backyard, why would you wish to force it into someone else’s? 
    1 comment(s)
  • Friday, July 13, 2018 4:00 AM
    Dear Rep. Negele,
    The Hoosier State Press Association thanks you for supporting H.B. 1016, which would guarantee freedom of expression to Indiana high school and collegiate journalists.
    Rep. Ed Clere, R-New Albany, was the bill’s author and he authored similar legislation in 2017.
    In 2017, Rep. Clere’s bill passed the House and died in the Senate – this year, H.B. 1016 failed to make it out of the House in the face of strong bureaucratic opposition after a promising House Education Committee hearing given by chair Rep. Bob Behning, R-Indianapolis. The hearing was highlighted by testimony from Indiana student journalists. The committee favored the bill, 9-2.
    The New Voices effort was endorsed by the American Bar Association, the national voice of the legal profession. Similar language already had passed in a number of other states. The proposed language would have curtailed the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Hazelwood, which allowed for administrative censorship for “pedagogical” reasons, to the previous precedent set by the Tinker decision, that only allowed intervention if the story had a substantial likelihood of disrupting the school.
    0 comment(s)
  • Thursday, July 12, 2018 4:00 AM
    Dear Rep. Brown: 
    The Hoosier State Press Association appreciates your willingness to listen to our concerns with the level of secrecy that was in H.B. 1315, which became H.E.A. 1315(ss).
    After our meeting, you tweaked the language in H.B. 1315, but we still believe the secrecy is excessive and lacks faith in the public.
    As expected, H.B. 1315(ss) was passed and signed into law by Gov. Eric Holcomb in the one-day special session Monday (May 14). The Republican super-majorities moved the legislation through both Houses in one-day with no testimony and no amendments.
    The bill contains language that HSPA testified against during the bill’s presentation to the Legislative Council, led by Speaker of the House Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, and then President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne.
    H.B. 1315(ss) contains changes to how the Gary and Muncie school districts are operated by the state, which took over control of both districts.
    It also sets out guidelines for the Distressed Unit Advisory Board (DUAB) in determining what school districts are placed on a Watch List (in danger of state takeover) and steps that can be taken by DUAB to turn school districts around to avoid the Watch List – primarily through a corrective action plan created by the school board and DUAB.
    For HSPA, it was disappointing that leadership moved forward with language that keeps it secret when:
    • DUAB reaches out to a school corporation to determine whether a corrective action plan is necessary;
    0 comment(s)
  • Wednesday, July 11, 2018 4:00 AM
    Dear Editor,
    I, Ed Stephens, am announcing my candidacy for Commissioner of District 2 on the Independent ticket.
    I am a lifelong resident of Montgomery County. My wife Patsy and I have three children, Debbie, Terry and Cindy all of whom live in Montgomery County. We are also blessed with grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
    I belong to the New Market Christian Church, Eagles Lodge, Alamo Masonic Lodge #144, Montgomery County Shrine Club and Murat.
    I will be campaigning on the belief that government should be limited in scope.
    0 comment(s)
  • Monday, July 9, 2018 10:15 PM
    Dear Editor,
    For quite some time now we have had the debate in Montgomery County whether to zone or not to zone. This, coupled with windmills, has been quite divisive in our community. While the push for zoning and windmills raged on and on, there are a few factors that we might be neglecting.
    The first is that we need zoning to bring jobs to the county. This is terribly misleading due to the fact that we don’t need more jobs. We need citizens ready, willing and able to work them. Local factories and employers have enough trouble keeping good help as it is. The jobless rate has more to do with the poor choices of our citizens than it does with the lack of employment opportunity. With that being said, how long do you think new businesses would last in this county?
    The next argument is that zoning will stop windfarm construction. A prime example of this being false has been proven in Benton and White counties. Both have zoning and both have windfarms. Putting proper ordinances in place would be more than enough to resolve this issue.
    Our county commissioners are simply using the issue of windfarms to push their agendas which are in favor of zoning by telling John Q. Public sweet tales of how zoning will work for them and avoiding the ugly truth of how it will work against them.
    The next problem with zoning is its ability to limit ones property rights. Zoning can bring upon greater hurdles for anyone wishing to build a home, add on to a home, build a pool, garage, barn, etc. Many issues claimed to be resolved by zoning can be hurdled with a few simple ordinances. We can make necessary adjustments without a whole new rule book.
    0 comment(s)
  • Sunday, July 8, 2018 9:02 PM
    Dear Editor,
    The new Indiana Trails Liability Law only protects land owners, from liability, when people access the trail from their property, not when people access their property, from the trail, and in most areas, that’s what the big problem is: people getting off the trail. The law only addresses accessing the trail, not exiting. Read it: H.E.A. 1115. No trespassing signs and fences already cover it all; but, you better get your fence, now; because trails operators are required to erect the fence and they are wanting to get out of that in the next Indiana General Assembly.
    Tug Beal,
    Bedford
    0 comment(s)
  • Friday, July 6, 2018 7:32 PM
    Dear Editor,
    It has been said that an unjust law is no law at all. That there are just and unjust laws. And the only place for a just man in an unjust society is prison. Certainly, that is not the case every time, but who is to decide what a law that is worth following versus one that is not?
    A thought experiment might help illustrate an unjust law. You are with your neighbor as you see a murder take place. You know with all certainty that your neighbor did not commit the crime. He is tried and convicted and on death row. You exhaust all means of explaining his innocence. Do you sit back and wait for news that your neighbor was murdered by the state or try to bust him out? I would like to live in a society where nobody will ever have to make that decision.
    Many do not realize that it costs four times as much to execute and house a death row inmate than life in prison without parole. With appeals, this death row inmate can accrue a cost in the millions. Due process and 24 hour suicide watch surveillance is apparently expensive. DNA evidence has proven that our state, our country, has committed murder, by executing those that were not guilty of capital punishment. Would it be too many, even if it were just one innocent put to death?
    0 comment(s)
  • Thursday, June 28, 2018 8:48 PM
    Dear Editor,
    To get right to the point, it's my opinion and others, the rural Montgomery County property owners -the ones county zoning affects, will lose their independence should Montgomery County accept zoning.
    At present our county commissioners, Phil Bane, Jim Fulwider and John Frey, are pressing for the comprehensive plan. We are told the comprehensive plan is not zoning. I agree, it is not zoning. But it can and must be the first step to zoning and in my opinion is worthless without zoning and ordinances (laws). The zoning ordinances give the plan authority.
    Our forefathers fought for independence. Past generations in Montgomery County stood against zoning to keep independence and we need to stand together against zoning for our independence and future generations.
    Bill Reed
    1 comment(s)
  • Tuesday, June 26, 2018 4:00 AM
    Dear Editor,
    I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of those who have helped with our dedication of the clocktower, on June 17th. It took many people to put the program together. I would like to thank the people who spoke, first. They were Mayor Todd Barton, Commissioner Philip Bane, Rev. John Van Nuys, school students Andrew Bliss and Katherine Novak. Also, David Kirtley and Marsh Davis, with Indiana Landmarks, from Indianapolis. 
    I would like to thank the boys from Boy Scout Troop 326 for their beautiful presentation of the colors with the flag ceremony and all of the clocktower committee members; Delmas and Jean Chadwick, Steve and Judy House, Sherry Harris, Janice Clauser, Barbara Foster, Mayor Todd Barton, Commissioner Phillip Bane, Rev. John Van Nuys, David Blix, Hubert Danzebrink, Steve Frees, and Sandy and Ken Brown.
    Sue Lucas from the Crawfordville Main Street, Heather Shirk with the Montgomery County Visitor’s Bureau, Amy Williamson with Blue Marketing, Dan Wills with Murdock Sound, David Morgan for providing chairs, Brandon Froedge with Parable Productions, Michele Humphreys at nPrint, Allen’s Country Kitchen, Milligan’s Flowers, Hoosier Heartland State Bank, CVL Broadcasting, WLFI-TV in Lafayette, FOX 59 TV and WISH-TV in Indianapolis, Journal Courier in Lafayette, The Paper of Montgomery County and the Crawfordsville Journal-Review. 
    Other people who helped with the ceremony were: Cindy Good, Nina Cunningham, Karen and Bryon Thada, Dave and Amy Allen, Jeff, Sam and Arlen Lucas, Julie Simpkins, and also anyone I may have missed. Also, thanks to those who gave donations to the clocktower fund at the dedication.
    0 comment(s)
  • Friday, June 22, 2018 7:52 PM
    Why? Our state is spending $9.6 million to HNTB for a tolling study. This is to decide on adding a toll charge to our interstates. How long will it take to recoup this amount of money. Maybe it’s time to elect someone who will try to save the overtaxed tax payer some money. Like I’ve always said, a politician should only be allotted two terms. One in office, and the other in prison, and maybe not in that particular order. It seems like the rich get richer, while they keep sticking it to those less fortunate. Our present governor would like to see this enacted by the end of his second term. What makes him think he’ll be elected a second term?
    Marvin Swick,
    Crawfordsville
    0 comment(s)
  • Thursday, June 21, 2018 7:48 PM
    Dear Editor,
    Women for Joe are sponsoring a conservation on Sunday, June 24, 2-4 pm in the Crawfordsville Library. This is a local event of a statewide effort to bring voters together to discuss issues of concern to both men and women. The discussion will be led by a representative of the Joe Donnelly Campaign.
    Joe is interested in what Hoosiers have to say, come and share your thoughts.
    Virginia Servies, 
    Women for Joe
    0 comment(s)
  • Wednesday, June 20, 2018 4:00 AM
    Dear Editor,
    We had a fairly sudden intense rain this afternoon at about 1:20 on Tuesday in town, it was glorious. My garden appreciates it and the intense ozone smell from the rain makes me happy. I live in drought stricken California in the winter growing avocados, in the summer I come to Crawfordville to get recharged like the Indiana soil. All readers should appreciate the rain we have. It is one of the most valuable and often overlooked resources we have in Montgomery County. I am also encouraged that the clock tower is up and dedicated. Natural and man made advantages, like rain and the tower, are what make Crawfordville a prime place to live.
    Micheal P. Fons,
    Crawfordsville
    1 comment(s)
  • Monday, June 11, 2018 10:34 PM
    Dear Editor,
    I attended the Comprehensive Planning meeting at Crawfordsville High School and found it very interesting. When the consulting firm speaker finished, he asked the audience to return to the commons and asked for help. There were several photos of Montgomery County and our citizens were to use their knowledge and pinpoint locations of interest for a particular item. Why were Montgomery County citizens asked for their input? The Comprehensive Plan is supposed to have citizens input. Another reason may be those who live here, work here and are raising their family here in Montgomery County know more about the county than the consulting firm. By asking questions, the firm will eventually learn about the county.
    This reminds me of a situation I had in Oklahoma. A little different picture, so please stay with me. I was driving a combine on an Oklahoma dirt road when one side of a culvert dropped from under the combine, turning the combine halfway over. Now I needed help. I called for a wrecker.
    When the wrecker arrived I was expecting the driver to take charge, show his experience and knowledge because I was to pay him. Instead, surprise, he wanted my advice. He said to me, “what do you think we should do?” At this point I am wondering who is supposed to help whom?
    Eventually we did upright the combine using both our ideas, but never-the-less, I had to pay the set fee. Consulting firm, costly outsiders, needing our help, learning about the county so they can advise our leaders what to do.
    1 comment(s)
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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Crawfordsville, Indiana 47933

 

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