Monday, February 29, 2016

Quote of the Month - March 2016

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss (Theodor Geisel)
March 2, 1904

Ancilla College Opens Health Care Simulation Training to Local Providers

iStanAncilla College is giving local health care workers the chance to sharpen their skills using a robotic patient simulator named iStan.
Simulation Technician Padraig Marshall says iStan is used to give the college’s nursing students their first experience working with patients. “He has all of your major vital signs from blood pressure to heart rate, respiration rate,” he says. “We can adjust his lung sounds. He can talk. He can cry. He can sweat. He can bleed. He can pee. He can do it all.”
He says the system gives students the opportunity to experience some of the scenarios they’ll see after graduation, “It prepares them for that hospital setting because, when you walk into iStan at Ancilla College, it’s just like a hospital room. I mean, we’ve got everything in there that they need in order to do whatever the scenario is that we’ve set up with them. Some of the scenarios we did last semester were, for the OB class, postpartum hemorrhage and things like that. That way, when they go in and they’re starting to assess their patient, they’re whole job is to do a head-to-toe assessment and to recognize the problem that’s going on.”
Now, Marshall says Ancilla College wants to open up these training opportunities to area hospitals, nursing homes, and other health care facilities, “Say they have a nurse that needs a little remediation in something or if they want to do continuing education credits over there at the college, that’s something we’ll be able to provide.”
He says the training opportunities will not only help the college get more involved in the local health care community; they will also help companies save money, “Turnover rate is one of the most expensive things in health care. So instead of them having to move on from certain employees that maybe weren’t getting the hang of something like that, and maybe they can come over. We can go through some things, set up some scenarios with iStan for them to use and for them to help rebuild their skills and refresh those things and give them back the confidence that maybe they’ve lost along the way.”
Local health care providers interested in the training can get more information by contacting Ancilla’s Nursing Department at 574-936-8898 ext. 327 or be e-mailing Marshall

Law Enforcement Increases Visibility During March Sports and Holiday Celebrations

Law enforcement agencies around the state plan to step-up enforcement during the month of March to deter aggressive and drunk driving.
According to information provided by the Indiana State Police, the blitz will begin on March 4th and last until March 27th. Basketball tournaments and St. Patrick’s Day are cited as the primary reasons for the increased patrols.
The Indiana Criminal Justice Institute says there were 529 alcohol-related crashes in the state during March of 2015. Of those, five crashes were fatal. Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter says that with the ongoing celebrations during March, he encourages drivers not to use it as an excuse to get behind the wheel while impaired.
State Police offer a few tips to ensure safety during times of celebration, including: planning a safe way home, using a taxi, ridesharing, or designated driver, and calling 911 if a drunk driver is spotted.
High visibility patrols will be part of the enforcement period.

IDHS Helps Equip Hoosiers with Weather Radios

Indiana-Department-of-Homeland-SecurityHoosiers have the chance to get a free all-hazard weather radio. The Indiana Department of Homeland Security is partnering with each county in the state to give away more than 4,800 of them.
According to the IDHS, the radios can pick up more than 60 types of emergency alert, including updates directly from the National Weather Service. IDHS Director of Public Information John Erickson says being able to get an early warning gives citizens the chance to take the appropriate action to keep themselves safe.
Each county’s emergency management agency will handle the distribution on the local level. Distribution efforts will focus on the economically disadvantaged, residents of mobile and prefabricated homes, and those not able to get weather alerts by other means.
The IDHS was able to purchase the radios with federal grant funding.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

NJ-SP Enrollment History

From the 2//24/2016  edition of The Market.  You can see a larger copy of this on page 7 of the online edition of The Market or on the library's website at NJ-SP School News.

3/1/2016 NJ-SP School Corporation Community Meeting

3/5/2016 Bella Vita Volunteering Training

Snow Day?

Right now it’s hard to believe but it would appear that tomorrow could be incredibly nasty.  “We’re going to have rain/freezing rain/1 to 3 inches of snow/6 to 8 inches of snow/8 to 10 inches of snow.”  They keep coming up with dire predictions followed by, “But we can’t be sure.” 

Let’s face it, so far we’ve been incredibly lucky as far as the amount of snow we’ve received.  Not one snow day has been needed by the schools so if tomorrow is nasty I, for one, won’t complain too much. 

One thing ALL the reports have in common is that the afternoon is supposed to be bad.  Wouldn’t want to endanger our patrons by having them out on the roads in bad weather, so if the library has to close early we will announce it on our Facebook page, our website, our blog and with a phone call to WKVI. 

So if tomorrow brings all the bad weather they are predicting, stay home, stay warm, and if you have to go outside make it for a snowball fight. 

3/28/2016 Monday Movie Madness: Cinderella (2015)

Join us on March 28, 2016 at 5 p.m. for our Monday Movie Madness viewing of the live action "Cinderella." This movie is rated PG. 

When her father unexpectedly passes away, young Ella finds herself at the mercy of her cruel stepmother and her scheming step-sisters. Never one to give up hope, Ella's fortunes begin to change after meeting a dashing stranger.

NIPSCO Electric Increase to be Smaller Than Originally Planned

nipsco-logoNIPSCO’s electric rate increase is moving ahead, but prices won’t be going up as much as originally planned. The company has reached an agreement with the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor, its industrial customers, and other groups.
As part of that agreement, residential customers will see a base rate increase of 5.4 percent, rather than the 11 percent NIPSCO originally requested. The fixed monthly customer charge will rise from $11 to $14, instead of $20.
According to a NIPSCO press release, the increase for commercial and industrial customers will depend on usage patterns. The company says that on average, rates for commercial and smaller industrial customers will increase less than originally planned.
Indiana Utility Consumer Counselor David Stippler says because of the agreement, NIPSCO’s revenue increase will be over 40 percent less than it would have been under the original proposal. NIPSCO says a rate hike is needed to cover increased maintenance and operating costs, as well as infrastructure upgrades.
The agreement still needs the approval of the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. If it’s approved, the new rates are expected to take effect during the second half of this year.
For more information, visit

Tags Required for North Judson Dogs and Cats

The North Judson Police Department is cracking down on pet owners who haven’t purchased the required tags for their cats and dogs from the town. Town Marshal Doug Vessely says the grace period for cat and dog owners to buy this year’s tags has ended.
Pet owners who haven’t yet purchased their tags are being told to do so as soon as possible, or they may be fined up to $50 per animal. The tags may be obtained at the Town Clerk’s Office at 310 Lane Street. The fee is $20 for dogs and cats that are spayed or neutered and $35 for those that aren’t.
Vessely reminds pet owners that animals must remain on the owner’s property or on a leash, as well as to clean up after their pets.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Beware of Income Tax Scams

Tax refund fraud is predicted to soar again this year. The Internal Revenue Service expects it to reach $21 billion. Now that tax filing season is here, Hoosiers and taxpayers across the country are getting calls from scammers claiming to be with the IRS. Mandla Moyo with AARP Indiana says such scammers prey on people’s fears and count on the fact they will take an official-sounding telephone call seriously.
Moyo adds scammers work by intimidation, so it’s important to know the I-R-S never contacts people by telephone like that. Additionally they do not threaten individuals or their family members with jail time due to delinquent taxes.
The best thing to do if you get such a telephone call is to hang up. Do not give any personal information to anyone who contacts you via telephone claiming to be an IRS agent.
To file a tax return electronically, all someone needs is a name, date of birth and a Social Security number. The IRS accepts tax filings starting in January, but employers aren’t required to submit their payroll information to the agency until March. By that time, Moyo says about half of all refunds have been paid – many to people using someone else’s identity.
Steve Vanderver heads up the AARP Foundation’s Tax Aide program in Indiana, which offers free tax-filing assistance. He encourages seniors to file regardless of whether they made any money during the year, as a precaution to help keep their Social Security number secure. He says the Tax Aide program has checks and balances in place to keep personal information safe. He says they don’t keep any documents from the taxpayers they serve. They give everything back and tell people to keep them in a safe place
Tax Aide assistance is open to any low- or middle-income person, not just seniors or AARP members.

NIPSCO Environmental Grants Now Available to Local Nonprofits

nipsco-logoLocal nonprofit organizations working to protect the environment can get some help, thanks to a grant from NIPSCO. The company is now accepting applications for its new Environmental Action Grant.
The goal is to provide funds for restoration and education projects, as well as to create new opportunities for people to volunteer. NIPSCO managing director of public affairs Larry Graham says they hope the grant leads to the creation of innovative and needed projects that might otherwise never happen.
Grant recipients will receive funding between the amounts of $500 and $5,000. Applications are due by March 31. Grant awards will be announced during the week of Earth Day, April 22.
To apply, visit

N.J.-S.P. Board Approves 2016-2017 Calendar

NJ-SP School Board 2015-2016The North Judson-San Pierre School Board approved the corporation’s 2016-2017 School Calendar Tuesday. Interim Superintendent Bob Boyd said there are no major changes from this year’s calendar. He told the board it’s still a balanced calendar, with the total number of school days staying the same.
Also during Tuesday’s meeting, N.J.-S.P. Business Manager Guy Richie told the board that the corporation had gotten a Teacher Performance Grant. He said that money would be divided among the qualified teachers, with each one getting just under $300.
Additionally, N.J.-S.P. FFA students will soon have the opportunity to learn more about the history and development of farming equipment. The school board approved an FFA field trip to the John Deere Pavilion in Moline, Illinois. FFA sponsor Emily DuVall says it will be an opportunity for students to get back to the roots of the agriculture industry, after they’ve been exploring alternative agriculture

Friday, February 19, 2016

The Ideal Carnegie Library

In the following article the word buildings is not misspelled.  Both Andrew Carnegie and James Bertram believed in simplified spelling which meant cutting out unpronounced letters. 

James Bertram, Andrew Carnegie’s secretary, held strong views on what an ideal Carnegie library should look like. A strong believer of a simple-is-best approach, Bertram frowned upon excessive detailing and other features which he considered excessive and unnecessary. To him, a “Greek temple or a modification of it” was a cause of waste. He also expressed strong views against anything he believed wasted space, always citing the ideal of “effective accommodation... consistent with good taste.” As the program progressed - and conflicts between architects, towns and Bertram increased - Bertram increased the amount of supervision regarding the layout and planning of libraries. By 1907 he began requiring all libraries to submit plans and elevations before any grant would be awarded. In 1911, with the help of leading authorities from the American library and architectural professions, Bertram produced a leaflet titled “Notes on Library Bildings,” which was sent to all communities receiving a promise of funds from the Carnegie Corporation. 

“Notes on Library Bildings” reflected many of Bertram’s ideals for the perfect public library. Specific recommendations included: 
• A rectangular building • One storey and basement, with outside staircase• One large room subdivided by bookcases• A basement four feet below grade• Ceiling heights of nine feet for the basement and 12 to 15 feet for the main floor• Rear and side windows seven feet from the floor to allow continuous wall shelving• A lecture room as subordinate feature in the basement.
“Notes on Library Bildings” also included a series of plans, labelled A-F, which dictated the layout and placement of a Carnegie library at a variety of scales. Common among all plans was the use of book cases around the walls and the use of additional bookstacks for internal partitions and separation of functions.

The NJWT library was built using plan A. While the upstairs still retains the look of the original, the lower level has undergone many changes over the years.  

Starke Election Board Recommends Early Voting Hours for May Primary

The Starke County Election Board has recommended early and absentee voting hours for May’s primary elections.
During their meeting on Wednesday morning, the calendar for Starke County residents to cast a ballot was considered. Early and absentee voting will take place in the Starke County Clerk’s office five days per week and two Saturdays in April.
Board member Dan Bridegroom says the Election Board should focus to provide better training to its volunteers.
“Training has got to be better this year than it was last year,” says Bridegroom. “Cause that’s all I heard everyplace I went: I don’t know what I’m doing [etc.] and it’s got to be by the book this year. That’s the law anyhow, but it’s by the book.”
The Election Board was attempting to balance the hours worked against training Election Day volunteers and clerk’s office employees hours worked.
The first day to cast an absentee ballot will be April 5th of this year. Voting hours will take place between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. A slight change will be seen on April 28th where early voting will be extended until 7:00 p.m.
The Election Board said it was essential to provide as many opportunities to vote as possible. A relatively large turnout is expected during what is otherwise a controversial presidential election cycle.
Starke County Democratic Party Chair Kenny Wallace says the area could see a significant increase in turnout compared to previous years.
“It will be compared to what we’ve been having,” says Wallace. “I’ll bet you we have somewhere between 40 and 50%. I guarantee it. And that’s a lot more people than you’ve been having.”
Starke County has seen a large absentee voter turnout in previous years: 2,300 in 2014, alone.
Saturday voting will take place April 23rd and 30th.

North Judson Begins Planning Sesquicentennial

Council Member Justin Davis, President Wendy J.Hoppe, Council Member Josh Brown, Council Member Jane Ellen Felchuk, Clerk-Treasurer Alicia Collins, Council Member Nathan Bradley, Town Superintendent Marshall Hortsmann, Town Attorney Rachel Arndt , Town Marshal Douglas Vessely, not pictured is Fire Chief Joe Leszek. Photo by North Judson Town Photographer Peggy Bohac
Council Member Justin Davis, President Wendy J.Hoppe, Council Member Josh Brown, Council Member Jane Ellen Felchuk, Clerk-Treasurer Alicia Collins, Council Member Nathan Bradley, Town Superintendent Marshall Hortsmann, Town Attorney Rachel Arndt , Town Marshal Douglas Vessely, not pictured is Fire Chief Joe Leszek. Photo by North Judson Town Photographer Peggy Bohac
The Town of North Judson is starting to make plans or its sesquicentennial celebration this year.
Clerk-Treasurer Alicia Collins shared some of her ideas with the town council Monday. “My idea is to kind of bring the town back to 1866, get some more people involved, and do an ice cream social in the building,” she said. “I’ve gotten some positive feedback with some older people in town.”
In fact, a few of the same people who were involved in the town’s centennial celebration 50 years ago have expressed interest in helping out again. One idea that has been discussed is having some of the residents dress up in 19th-century clothing and demonstrate what life was like in those days.
During the meeting, Collins asked the council to let her begin a more formal planning process, “I would kind of like to get a community committee going because there’s been people that have come up here wanting to be involved. And even the schools; I know I’ve talked to a couple teachers and they were like, ‘OK, well what can our students do?'”
There was also some discussion Monday about whether the celebration should be incorporated into the larger Mint Festival held in June or if there should be a separate celebration in October, the actual month of the town’s founding. Some advantages cited of an October celebration would be cooler temperatures and the fact that school would be in session, making it easier for teachers to include the event as part of students’ classwork.
Donna Henry, who helps organize the Mint Festival, says her committee has been considering ways to incorporate the town’s sesquicentennial and Indiana’s bicentennial into this year’s event. They’ve also thought about having an essay contest on state and local history.
The town council voted to allow Collins to proceed with forming a committee to organize the sesquicentennial celebration.

N.J.-S.P. Buys New Food Service Equipment

BluejayThe North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation is making some upgrades to its food service equipment. The school board Tuesday approved the purchase of a new walk-in cooler for the storage of frozen foods.
Business Manager Guy Richie says the existing one is due for replacement, “We’ve been milking that along for probably the last 15, 20 years, and fortunately, we do have the money to repair that and put in a new one.”
Two quotes were received for the new cooler. The school board voted to accept the lower one, which was made by Jackson Refrigeration, for a cost of just over $27,000.
Richie says that money will come out of the Food Service Fund, and that the corporation needs to use it up, “That was a request, being it’s federal money that we had to do this,” he says. “It wasn’t that we just got frivolous all of the sudden; we had no choice but to do it. Otherwise, they can hold back others of your federal funds, which includes grant money and such, so we don’t want to get in that area.”
The new equipment is planned to be installed over the summer.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Podcasts from the North Judson-Wayne Township Library

We've arrived in the 21st Century! 

Each week our librarian, Michael Booth, will be recording a podcast about events taking place in the library and interviews with local people.  Be sure to stop in and listen.  

Podcasts from the NJWTPL

We've Been Branded!

While we were closed on President’s Day I attended a webinar on how to “brand” the Axis360 Magic Wall for our ebooks.  Because of that I have made a couple of changes that will appear on your computer when you visit the site.  (Sorry, it doesn’t work with the Axis360 Magic Wall for your tablet or phone but I’m exploring how to make changes in that area next.)

When you visit our Magic Wall you will notice that in the upper left corner there is a picture of the library.  Click on that picture and it will take you to our website where you can see listings of local activities, festivals in the area, library and community calendars, college and FAFSA information, links for kids, our hours and many, many other items we think you want/need to know.

Directly underneath the picture is a row listing Magic Wall, App Zone (information about adding this site to your tablet, ebook reader, or phone), Browse by Subject (for a listing of subjects you might be interested in reading), and a new listing called Series.  When you click on Series it takes you to a listing of the series we have as ebooks.  Currently there are 10 listed, just click on the series title and it will show you the books available.

So stay tuned, who knows what marvels will be revealed next time?

N.J.-S.P. Places Money in Rainy Day Fund for First Time

NJ-SP School Board 2015-2016The North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation is hoping a change in how leftover money is budgeted will help keep the corporation running until significant spending cuts take effect. The corporation has decided to make money available for use in the corporation’s Rainy Day Fund.
During Tuesday’s school board meeting, Interim Superintendent Bob Boyd explained how the fund works. “When you end the budget year, if you have dollars left over, those dollars can stay in that fund from which they are originated, or you can go to an all-funds balance – they call it a Rainy Day Fund,” he said. “The General Assembly allows us by statute to pool all of those dollars into an all-funds balance called a Rainy Day Fund that can then be used through appropriation for a rainy day activity, an emergency of some kind.” He says right now, the corporation’s emergency is cash flow, since it needs to have money available to meet payroll on an ongoing basis.
N.J.-S.P. Business Manager Guy Richie says while the corporation has never made use of its Rainy Day Fund, the concept isn’t exactly new, “We established a Rainy Day Fund, I think maybe 13, 14 years ago, but we never did want to actually put money into it. We ran this place without having to dip into other funds. [That’s] what you’re really doing here. But obviously we’ve gotten to the point we need some help for the General Fund.”
To provide that help, the school board unanimously approved a transfer of just under $100,000 from the Capital Projects fund and nearly half a million dollars from the Transportation Fund into the Rainy Day Fund. Richie says that because the corporation has an appointed school board, the transfer will go before the Starke County Council on March 21, who will decide whether to approve it as an additional appropriation. If it’s approved, the corporation will then be able to start spending that money.
The revitalization of the Rainy Day Fund came during the same meeting that the school board approved a framework for the “right sizing” of the corporation. Interim Superintendent Bob Boyd says the corporation won’t see the full benefits of the new framework until 2017, and the cash reserves in its operating budget are currently running out.
Boyd pointed out that the corporation’s General Fund does not get any income from property taxes, and a referendum that would have changed that was rejected last fall by voters in the district.

Election Board to Seek Advice Prior to Adopting Poll Worker Resolution

The Starke County Election Board plans to revisit a resolution intended to structure the duties of the Election Day inspectors.
During their meeting on Monday morning, a measure was considered allowing one inspector to oversee the operations of multiple voting precincts. Starke County adopted a similar measure in 2015, but changes to state statute limit the resolutions from being effective past the end of December for the previous year.
Starke County Clerk Vicki Cooley says this will be a recurring decision for the Election Board.
“What we did last year isn’t going to work for this year,” says Cooley. “So every year if we want to do this, we have to do a separate resolution.”
The Starke County Election Board is working under a bit of a timeline to see the resolution adopted, but have until voting begins to ensure it has been properly implemented.
Inspectors typically manage poll openings and closings on Election Day. Swearing-in poll workers, and handling some administrative paperwork, are also included in their duties. A bit of criticism was found when allowing one inspector to serve multiple precincts, considering 2016 is an election year with heavy voter turnout anticipated.
Election Board Member Dan Bridegroom says the resolution is also safeguard for the County.
“What this is for is, in case we have to go to one,” says Bridegroom. “Say something would happen to happen to one of [the inspectors], with this resolution, it’s legal to do that.”
The format allows Starke County to transition to vote centers in future years.
Language in the resolution regarding limitations on the number of Inspectors assigned to precincts in Center Township 1 and 2 brought additional questions. It was determined that the board will seek guidance from the Indiana Election Division on the matter prior to adoption. The matter was tabled for further consideration.

North Judson to Accept Cemetery Mowing Bids

North Judson to Accept Cemetery Mowing Bids

Highland Cemetery North JudsonThe Town of North Judson is looking for contractors interested in mowing the lawns at Highland and Pioneer cemeteries. The town council Monday decided to accept the mowing bids until March 21 at noon.
Potential contractors will be expected to mow both cemeteries eight times between May 1 and November 1. The contractors will also be responsible for leaf pickup. Additionally, they may be asked to mow the lawn at the firehouse when needed, but town officials say this will not be included in the bid request.
North Judson Clerk Treasurer Clerk-Treasurer Alicia Collins told the town council she’s already heard from three companies interested in doing the work. That’s a change from last year when the deadline for bids had to be extended due to low response.
A request for bids will soon be published in the newspaper.