Tuesday, May 22, 2018

22 May 2018 Dearborn County Council Meeting Notes


22 May 2018 Dearborn County Council Meeting Notes
Present: Liz Morris, President, Dennis Kraus. Sr., Dan Lansing, Charlie Keyes, Ryan Brandt, Alan Goodman, and Bill Ullrich. 
Also present: Sue Hayden, County Administrator and Auditor covered by Leah Bailey, Comptroller)
ABSENT: Connie Fromhold, Auditor
Title VI statement read as legally required by Liz Morris
Ryan Brandt said he was stepping down as Vice President tonight and nominated Alan Goodman to take the spot. He did it as he was leaving after this year due to losing the primary election. Council regretfully acquiesced to this request.
SUPERIOR COURT II – Judge Sally McLaughlin
Additional funds for hiring as retiree leaves- primary court reporter is retiring. Because of 7-8 weeks of sick time etc to be paid out they don’t have money to cover this. $4754.00 was approved out of Riverboat Revenue for this . 

PROSECUTOR – Lynn Deddens
Salary adjustment (Ordinance update) Completely funded thru a state grant - approved the $5000 + amount. There was an error in the previous paperwork. 
Victim Services Grant - This was a problem Deddens inherited. This is required to have match. Took $17,000 from forfeiture money for this. The remaining match would be $16,555. It is in arrears $87,387. This is an ongoing issue and this amount keeps them up to date for 2018. 
Invoices received in 2018 for 2017 furnishings for new annex. This is coming from forfeiture for this. Deddens left her furniture behind for the judges and other offices who didn’t have it in their budget- so she can use forfeiture for her furniture. Ullrich and Brandt commended Deddens on leading by example and waiting to get her furniture till the others had Approved. 

EMA – Jason Sullivan
Emergency Management Performance Grant- approved to sign the grant.
Lawrenceburg Community Grant/Automated External Defibrillator $70,705- no county match. They will provide training on their use. Approved.

ASSESSOR – Gary Hensley
PTA-BOA- presented by Leah Bailey. Assessments are trending back up per Morris. She wants the assessor t send an explanatory letter when they send this out. More money needed because of additional PTABOA hearings due to these s=assessment changes. Approved to release the funds. 

911 – Jared Teaney
Computer soft/hardware purchase- had to replace their phone system Cinti Bell as of Jan 1 2019. They are purchasing a new system from Solacom with Indigital. They are adding  5th station but not a 5th person. This is just a  back-up position. If things break that station is necessary. commissioners and 911 board have approved this. There were 3 bids and this was the lowest one. Several surrounding counties also use them. 5 years of software support included. Brian Rumsey explained how the software and maintenance works. 911 is a changing technology due to all the internet devices that can access it. $7678 and $5000 + each year. Approved. 
Additional console for 5th station. - $36,000 approved out of interlocal funds. 

CIRCUIT COURT PROBATION – Steve Bradley
Part-time employee salaries- $7500 for this- he had asked for $4000 and only got $1000 approved. Juvenile probation officer has been called up in the reserves starting in August for 10 months. Approved.

HEALTH DEPT – Mary Calhoun
Bus equipment & repairs Leah Bailey presented- this money has been dormant for quite a while. Mary contacted the state and the state does not want the money back. If declared dormant they can put it in their health fund and use it. Approved. 

PARK BOARD – Jim Red Elk
County Farm Park Improvements- Liz Morris asked what is the cost to maintain the shooting range annually- about $150 a year.One small shed at shooting range with  targets etc. They want to add another shelter. the sheriffs dept. and other police depts. use the shooting range. They also see increased pedestrians using the walking trail. $36,300 approved.  
Equipment Improvement- $2850 to purchase a hydraulic grappler for brush pick up and chains and binders an strapping to secure equipment on trailer. Approved out of County Farm. 
Gladys Russell Park Improvement- $9700- for 6 little individual projects around the barn and restrooms. Approved 
Misc. Improvements- $7162 for 4 small projects at Guilford drinking fountain and pressure washer for flooding etc. and the other parks. Approved. 
Mulch- $5100 for playground mulch for Bright and Guilford plus a 2nd application for Guilford. There is an engineered mulch for around the play equipment.
Grant Application-  to apply for $25,000 for 4 wheel drive RTV for maintenance support at 3 of the rural parks. It would be secured with the other equipment at County Farm. Budget will increase for gas, maintenance and insurance etc. Using their own vehicles now- this puts it on the county budget. Approved. 
Request to Solicit Donations- Two pieces - make it possible to make electronic donations via the website. Also to partner with local businesses to be sponsors and volunteer labor. They want dto present the concept before going any further. They would probably just put up a small thank you sign. They would need a county managed account. The auditor would handle disbursements. They want permission to work with the auditor on this. Sue Hayden said the county has a blanket policy on the boards for crimes. Approved to proceed to pursue this with the auditor’s office. 

JUVENILE CENTER – Tracy Agner/Scott Schwing
Overtime/holiday and Part-time- shift supervisor retired. PAC committee wanted them absorb the duties. There is $21,000 left in that line item. they want to use this for the rest of 2018. Kraus and Morris on that committee were satisfied with this approach. Approved. 

SURVEYOR / GIS – Dennis Kraus, Jr.
Maps- GIS perpetuation fund was suggested to use for this. Their consensus was not to use for this - except for the larger county maps for all the departments. The $1620 from GIS for big maps and remainder from perpetuation fund to total $3990 total for the rest of the maps. They will be reviewed before printed by GIS and Surveyor. Approved.  

HIGHWAY – Todd Listerman / Tim Greive
Jamison Rd Bridge # 76- additional funding needed. Bidding was too high last year. Modified plans to get it lower. So steel and gas increased since last year. $350,000 needed out of Growth and Development. Tis fixes a slide also by Losekamp. Approved. 
Bituminous for asphalt- Tim Grieve- We have a lot of slips in the county. Just now starting to fix everything. FEMA meeting last week to fill out application for over $1million- its a 25/75 split. The $200,000 request was before the FEMA option. He still needs the $200,000 NOW. If this FEMA comes in they would need the whole amount up front and then get 75% back. $ 1million is the max needed for the grant up front. Approved the $200,000 out of Growth and Development and move forward with the FEMA grant. 


PLANNING AND ZONING – Mark McCormack- presented by Leah Bailey
Additional to cover Per Diem - more meetings this year $2400- Approved
Copier Maintenance (Town of West Harrison)- new interlocal agreement- $400 Approved out of West Harrison check. They want to be sure the funds are exclusively out of that check and no problems at budget time like in previous years. Leah was asked to relay that to McCormack. Note also this was advertised as these numbers but the letter to West Harrison said $500 and $4500. Keyes and Kraus voted Nay as these amounts didn’t match the letter. 
Part-time Code Enforcement Officer, Co-op/Intern (Town of West Harrison)- $4400 for part time out of the West Harrison check- Approved. ???
Temporary office help (Town of Dillsboro)- Brandt abstained. $3500 approved
Part-time workers (Town of Dillsboro)-$4600- Brandt abstained. Approved.
Contractual (Co-ops / Interns) part-time workers (City of Aurora)-$12,164 approved. Ullrich said Aurora is happy with how things are going. 
AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold
Minutes from January 23, 2018- approved.
Adoption of Payroll/HR Deputy Job Description- for Kim - approved 
Soil & Water – Vickie Riggs (Ordinance update – 4th quarter 2017)- and
Soil & Water – Vickie Riggs (Ordinance update – 1st quarter 2018)- approved for farm crop work
Superior Court I – Wages for training new hire- $1189 approved

Budget hearings set for August 13-17  and adopted Sept 26. 

SIRPC-- This was presented to Commissioners previously- Indiana Housing and Community Dev Authority- $350,000- If you put in a match you get better chance. 14 families. Low to moderate income residents. Wants 10% so $35,000. They hope to use whatever assistance they get from the housing preservation grant towards that $35,000. But if they don’t get that we will need to commit to $35,000. Indiana Housing Application not due till Dec. Liens are no longer required for these. Commissioners and Council only want to assist in the unincorporated areas. The cities can do their own. 20% of the funds also goes to pay SIRPC. Morris and Council said they could roll the dice and elect to NOT do a match. Ullrich noted that we would be paying them to get the grant with a match. Approved without a match to apply for the $350,000 grant only to serve the unincorporated county. Lansing, Kraus, and Keyes Nay as they didn’t like the cities being out.    

CITY OF GREENDALE – Mayor Alan Weiss
Thank the County- Not here to ask for any money. Last year we were involved in a dilemma here and he realized later, the incorporated areas got money from us and no one comes up and says thanks. He wants to start a trend. He wants them to see what they have done with riverboat money. Water tank brine salt projects. Cannot afford a leak below ground, Tanks are now above ground and controls are automated. Part of this water goes to Hidden Valley -$231,000.
Automated their water plant after that person retired. Payback less than 3 years. $170,057.
Valley woods substation- state of the art- growth along US50 and 275. There have been a lot of companies asking about that property and they need reliable electric there. Cost $875,000. $400,000 of this is TIF money. 
Few others 3 police vehicles all over 125,000miles and one over 180,000. 
Half of the repaving of half of Oberting and all of the other half. Some was Community Crossings. Some was also on Urban Way connector. 
Riprap on Schnebelt Pond due to Muskrats eating awe at that. 
Thanks you and you deserve our appreciation. What’s good for Greendale is good for the County and what’s good for the County s good for Greendale. Thank you.

PUBLIC COMMENT- none

Meeting adjourned at 8:30 PM
Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Friday, May 18, 2018

AGENDA May 21 Dearborn County Planning Commission Meeting

AGENDA May 21 Dearborn County Planning Commission Meeting

Agenda and packet of materials can be seen by clicking the link below. For those interested there has been no further submission of materials from the Bling Hunting Club request from April 2018 meeting as of this week. They are not on this agenda for Monday May 21.

http://www.dearborncounty.org/egov/documents/1526415591_10333.pdf

AGENDA- May 22 County Council Meeting




AGENDA
DEARBORN COUNTY COUNCIL MEETING
Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.
Henry Dearborn Room
Dearborn County Government Center
165 Mary Street, Lawrenceburg, Indiana

CALL TO ORDER:

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

SUPERIOR COURT II – Judge Sally McLaughlin
Additional funds for hiring as retiree leaves

PROSECUTOR – Lynn Deddens
Salary adjustment (Ordinance update)
Victim services Grant
Invoices received in 2018 for 2017 furnishings for new annex

EMA – Jason Sullivan
Emergency Management Performance Grant
Lawrenceburg Community Grant/Automated External Defibrillator

ASSESSOR – Gary Hensley
PTA-BOA

911 – Jared Teaney
Computer soft/hardware purchase
Additional console

CIRCUIT COURT PROBATION – Steve Bradley
Part-time employee salaries

HEALTH DEPT – Mary Calhoun
Bus equipment & repairs

PARK BOARD – Jim Red Elk
County Farm Park Improvements
Equipment Improvement
Gladys Russell Park Improvement
Misc. Improvements
Mulch
Grant Application

JUVENILE CENTER – Tracy Agner/Scott Schwing
Overtime/holiday
Part-time

SURVEYOR / GIS – Dennis Kraus, Jr.
Maps

HIGHWAY – Todd Listerman / Tim Greive
Jamison Rd Bridge # 76
Bituminous for asphalt






PLANNING AND ZONING – Mark McCormack
Additional to cover Per Diem
Copier Maintenance (Town of West Harrison)
Temporary office help (Town of Dillsboro)
Part-time workers (Town of Dillsboro)
Contractual (Co-ops / Interns) part-time workers (City of Aurora)
Part-time Code Enforcement Officer, Co-op/Intern (Town of West Harrison)


AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold
Minutes from January 23, 2018
Adoption of Payroll/HR Deputy Job Description
Soil & Water – Vickie Riggs (Ordinance update – 4th quarter 2017)
Soil & Water – Vickie Riggs (Ordinance update – 1st quarter 2018)
Superior Court I – Wages for training new hire

CITY OF GREENDALE – Alan Weiss
Thank the County

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURN

Some Improvements at Sr 148 and 48.

Photo submitted by a local Manchester resident today with the title "Cousin It Visits Dearborn County."

Thursday, May 17, 2018

SIX PEOPLE CAN DETERMINE THE FATE OF OUR COUNTY


SIX PEOPLE DETERMINE THE FATE OF OUR COUNTY

This editorial was also published May 15, 2018 in the Journal Press


So, a beaver walks into a local home improvement store and asks if they have an implement that might help him cut down trees for his dam. The clerk fixes him up with a chainsaw and the beaver happily scampers off.

A few days later the beaver returns with the chainsaw. “This hasn’t made my job easier at all.” The clerk says, “Let me check it out.” He takes the chainsaw, flips the switch, chokes it and gives the starter rope a pull. Vvrrooom, the chainsaw roars. The beaver panics and flees from the store screaming, “What’s that noise!”  

One can only guess the pandemonium that broke out in the Dearborn County Board of Elections when they plugged the charged battery packs into what they apparently thought were very expensive ballot lock boxes.

Not that election integrity matters in Dearborn County where the mantra is “Democrats Need Not Apply.”  Gerrymandered or misfortunate, Dearborn County is a knee jerk, one party county. For Dearborn County Republicans, the May primary for county office is just an inconvenience before the November coronations.

From what I read in The Register, the Republican Party apparently floated an ineligible candidate, which conveniently gives them a vacant position for any insider or failed primary candidate they can now unilaterally ordain by “caucus” as our inevitable third county commissioner. 

Extremely few people determine the fate of our county.  It requires only six people, two commissioners and four county council members, to bleed the treasury dry for pet projects we get no say in. Sound familiar? And, those six are decided by the Dearborn County Republican Party whose family tree has fewer branches than a Charlie Brown Christmas tree.

Even with the best intentions, political incest is never a beneficial governing principle. It smothers fresh and diverse opinion and usually leads to arrogant overreach and incompetence. Worst case, lacking adequate checks and balances, it results in corruption. Competition is healthy, a few people running a single party dictatorship is not.

Disclaimer: Neither a card carrying “R” or “D”, I support conservative candidates with a heart, liberal candidates with a brain, common sense and compromise.

Chet Wolgamot
Manchester Twp.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

15 MAY 2018 DEARBORN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETING NOTES


15 MAY 2018 DEARBORN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETING NOTES

Present: Shane McHenry, President, Art Little, and Jim Thatcher

Also present: Connie Fromhold, Auditor, Andy Baudendistel, Attorney, and Sue Hayden, Administrator

Brian DeBruler videotaped this meeting.

TITLE VI STATEMENT FOR COMPLIANCE was read by Baudendistel as legally required.

OLD BUSINESS- none

NEW BUSINESS

Gayle Pennington- Clerk of Courts- Election updates- 45 precincts - total voted 6816, 5811 R. 1005 D. 623 absentee votes. 17.79% voter turnout. Finished by 9 PM with counting votes. Only problem with machines was dead batteries on a card in the machines. Jeremy from E S & S here from the software company. Board of election meeting on Friday at 2:45 PM to open provisional ballots. That meeting is open to the public. 

Review of Ballot Machine with Election Systems and Software Representative- Jeremy Burton- Election Systems and Software This was a terrible election. Batteries went bad 4.5 years before they were supposed to. They only lasted 6 months. They are set to last 8 years and they recommend changing in 5 years to be safe. They apologize. Free batteries to the county for each election. The votes were accurately counted by 6:15 PM. 

Jim Red Elk - ParkBoard Secretary- Soliciting Donations- wants a donate button on the park board website. This would have to comply with the auditor’s and state code rules. We are doing the same thing for County Farm. They would work thru the mechanics of that. 63 weddings at the parks. 148 events total for shelter and barn. They do not charge anything for that now. They want to solicit financial donations to offset the park costs associated wit those uses. Per Baudendistel- 36-10-3-18 covers non-reverting funds for purposes specified by the grantor. They currently have a non- reverting capital account. They also want one for maintenance. 
Approved to go to Council for this. 
Business donations- some local businesses have approached them for annual financial donations or volunteer employee work donations. The is a big thing in Butler County. In Hamilton and Butler County they have companies who pay an annual fee to sponsor a particular facility or a specific park. They could put up a small sign to show that. We would have to be open minded with all the businesses. They like the idea of it being competitive. Baudendistel said they would have to make sure it didn’t become an ad. Approved to proceed forward with those discussions with businesses. Red Elk said they will work closely with the auditor on those funds. 

Park Board Grant Applications and Request to approach Council for an RTV. Ok to approach Council.

ADMINISTRATOR – Sue Hayden- apologized for this not being on agenda- but it just came to her today- Samantha Wood resigned as physician for Jail. Hired David Hobbs MD to start for two days per week plus call- $11,133/year. The nurse’s agreement has not been signed and so they need to do that too. Baudndistel said those were redone 2-3 years ago and these are the same. Ron Phillips is the nurse $12,742 base pay. Additional services cost more. Both approved and signed.  

AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold  -Claims and Minutes from special meeting for vicious and dangerous dog and May 1st approved.

Covered Bridge Certification for the Guilford Covered Bridge - our only one- approved by Commissioners. 

ATTORNEY – Andy Baudendistel- nothing

COMMISSIONER COMMENTS: Little congratulated McHenry on being elected.

LATE ARRIVAL INFORMATION- none

PUBLIC COMMENT- Brian DeBruler- aggregator of community opinion- but not by choice… Commissiners allowed him to ask the company rep the ballot questions from the election. He asked about the batteries- what exactly were their purpose. It holds all the election data etc. They lose programming data if etc battery dies. 80 % failure rate of batteries in our case. This was isolated case to just Dearborn County. The poll workers had to rescan all the ballots. There was a back-up set of cards that were copied.  

Mr Cunningham- several people voted in Yorkville. All 86 ballots he saw were laying out exposed they were not in the closed slot section. Pennington said this is a training issue- the tech fixed that by 1:30 PM but this was not to be done that way in the future- She will red star that for training. Pennington aid they canvassed the votes versus the signatures in the book and all were accounted for. 

ADJOURN- 5:40 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Monday, May 14, 2018

AGENDA- May 15 Commissioners Meeting



  AGENDA 
DEARBORN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS MEETING 
May 15, 2018 
5:00 P.m., Henry Dearborn Room 
Dearborn County Government Center 
165 Mary Street, Lawrenceburg, Indiana 

I. CALL TO ORDER 

II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE 

III. TITLE VI STATEMENT FOR COMPLIANCE 

IV UNFINISHED BUSINESS 

V. NEW BUSINESS 
1. Gayle Pennington, Clerk of Courts 
1. Election Updates 
2. Review of Ballot Machine w/Election Systems & Software Representative 
2. Jim Red Elk, Park Board Secretary 
1. Soliciting Donations 
2. Grant Application & Request to Approach Council 

VI. ADMINISTRATOR – Sue Hayden 

VII. AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold 
1. Covered Bridge Certification 
2. Claims/Minutes 

VIII. ATTORNEY – Andy Baudendistel 

IX. COMMISSIONER COMMENTS 

X. LATE ARRIVAL INFORMATION 

XI. PUBLIC COMMENT 

XII. ADJOURN 

Monday, May 07, 2018

AGENDA May 10 DC Redevelopment Commission


 AGENDA
DEARBORN COUNTY REDEVELOPMENT COMMISSIONS MEETING
May 10, 2018
8:30 a.m., 1st Floor Henry Dearborn Room
Dearborn County Government Center
165 Mary Street, Lawrenceburg, Indiana


  1. Call to order

  1. Title VI Statement for Compliance

  1. Approval of Minutes
April 12, 2018 Meeting

  1. Claims & Financials
1.  TIF Fund Claims -NONE
2.  General Fund Claim - NONE
3.  Financials 

  1. Unfinished Business
1.  Aurora Industrial Sign / BZA Meeting Update 
2.  Billboard Lease Updates
3.  Signage in West Harrison Update

  1. New Business

  1. One Dearborn Report

  1. Attorney’s Report

  1. Other Business

  1. Adjournment




Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Voter Apathy Is the Symptom, not the Problem

Voter Apathy Is the Symptom, not the Problem



 by Leo Morris
Indiana Policy ReviewMorris
When I was a kid like you, I used to tell high school classes, people kept warning me to quit shooting my mouth off before I got into trouble. Now, I said, I’ve found the perfect job as an editorial writer. I get to shoot my mouth off every day, and they pay me for it. And the best part is, I don’t even have to be right.

But it’s better to be right than wrong, so it pains me to think I might have been wrong about something, especially if I have been repeatedly wrong.

Such may be the case on the issue of voting. I expect I’ve written at least two dozen editorials over the years bemoaning the apathy of American citizens and urging the powers that be to make voting easier. Early voting! Extended voting! Same-day registration! A polling booth on every corner!

Alas, voting has become easier and easier, but potential voters have not responded with a burst of civic virtue.

Since a landmark 1980 study by political scientists Steven Rosenstone and Raymond Wolfinger, arguing that many people didn’t vote because it was too difficult, states have made registration easier, and the federal government even jumped in with the so-called Motor Voter Act of 1993. Voting itself is easier, too, with more places and more methods and longer times to vote.

Let’s admit it. Voting is not a great burden, it really isn’t. What else should we do – put voting machines in McDonald’s and refuse to let people have their fries unless they pull a lever?

Yet most people still don’t bother.

In 2016, the Pew Research Center ranked the U.S. 31st out of 35 countries for voter turnout among the mostly democratic nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. And in 2014, Indiana had the lowest turnout in the nation.

And just who are these recalcitrant voters we are trying so hard to entice to the polls?

A University of Pennsylvania survey in 2016 found only about 25 percent of Americans could name all three branches of government, and nearly a third could not name a single one. More than one in three could not name a single right guaranteed by the First Amendment. According to a 2014 Pew survey, only 38 percent of Americans could identify which party controls the House or the Senate. 

Would the electoral process really be improved and the republic better off by cajoling even more ignorant citizens into making choices for a government they don’t understand? People don’t stay home because voting is too difficult. They don’t vote because they are not engaged in civic life and, furthermore, have no interest in it.

David Harsanyi, a senior editor of The Federalist, has a radical solution – let’s make voting more difficult. “We should demand some effort” so people can “ponder long and hard the gravity of the mistake they’re about to make.” And to make sure we’re scrupulously fair about it, “we must do our best to make voting equally onerous for all races and creeds.”

I can understand the sentiment. People have a greater appreciation for the things they have to work for, when they can see a connection between effort and reward.

I would not go that far. Voting is a right, not a privilege, and if we accept roadblocks for one right then we are giving permission for all our rights to be treated cavalierly. But once we have achieved a certain level ease and order – surely we’re there – it’s time to back off and let the people who are interested participate and stop pestering those who aren’t.

Voter apathy is a symptom, not the problem, which is the utter failure of our education system to nurture the virtues of good citizenship and stress the dangers of its lack. 

Civics was once the primary purpose of a public education in this country. It is needed, Thomas Jefferson argued, “to give every citizen the information he needs . . . to enable him to calculate for himself . . . to understand his duties to his neighbors and country . . . and, in general, to observe with intelligence and faithfulness all the social relations under which he shall be placed.”

Somewhere along the way, civics classes fell off the curricula. Today, faced with the real possibility that the republic might slip away, educators are trying to reintroduce the idea that students must learn how to be active participants in their own government. But the efforts so far have been woefully inadequate.

So here’s my radical idea (introduced in the Indiana Legislature but gaining no traction): Make students pass a social studies test to get a high school diploma. And if we want to be really serious about teaching responsible citizenship, perhaps we should even require them to take the same test immigrants must pass to become citizens.

That might make a few more people vote, and maybe they’d even know what they’re voting on.
“Civilization,” H.G. Wells said, “is a race between education and catastrophe.”

Right now, education is not winning the race.

At least that’s what I’d tell high school classes today, and hope I would be right, and that students would listen.
 
Leo Morris, columnist for The Indiana Policy Review, is this year’s winner of the Hoosier Press Association’s award for Best Editorial Writer. Morris, as opinion editor of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, was named a finalist in editorial writing by the Pulitzer Prize committee. Contact him atleoedits@yahoo.com.

Journalism Finally Understood

Journalism Finally Understood


“Things reveal themselves passing away. “ — William Butler Yeats

by Craig Ladwig 
Indiana Policy Review

Reading analysis of the disaster that was the monologue at this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner, the thought occurs: Can an entire generation in a given profession fail to reach maturity?

The old newsroom guard had warned precisely that. They said modern journalists lacked the judgment any readership expected, that they would be the ruin of the craft.

But then, in my memory at least, journalists have always been child-like. It goes along with certain attributes of good reporting, that is, a sincere curiosity about the world, a reflexive questioning of authority, a reckless willingness to demand that the adults in charge explain themselves.

What seems to be missing, rather, is that adult supervision.

To make this case, you need to become familiar with an antique desktop accessory, a  3-inch spindle or nail found on any senior editor’s desk right up until the mid 1970s.

These copy spikes often dated to the newspaper’s founding and had beautifully decorated brass bases. They were one of the first workplace hazards discovered by the Occupation Safety and Health Administration. This was so even though nobody in the newsroom had ever heard of anyone being injured by one or had ever known anyone who had heard of anyone being injured by one.

Anyway, it was on these spikes where editors “filed” rejected articles. This was done unceremoniously and without explanation, as in “What happened to the story you were working on?” “They spiked it.”

On the metro newspaper in which I came of age, any story submitted to the front page that hinted at what was disdainfully referred to as “human interest” was spiked. Readers were too busy, it was thought, for folderol.

To a young journalist, this seemed arbitrary and purposelessly demoralizing. Stories were spiked simply because they didn’t jibe with an editor’s experience or, perversely, didn’t strike him as particularly novel. The end product, though, could be safely read aloud to all ages at a breakfast table.

So how did we get from there to where the elect of the national press corps, assembled in self-congratulation over cocktails, laughs at jokes about vaginas and aborted babies?

I have an explanation, a historic one — maybe right, maybe wrong, but plausible.

About 40 years ago, around the time OSHA was confiscating our copy spikes, the proprietors of local newspapers began selling out to widely held national corporations. Wall Street thought the dailies were a good investment because of their reputation as being inflation-proof (want ads increased during bad times, display ads increased during good times).

Out went the irascible ideologue of a publisher with his country club friends and garden club wife. In came the ambitious manager on a five-year assignment and the narcissistic editors and advocacy specialists riding his coattails.

Morale improved markedly, as it does when the adult leaves the room. It was spitball time. No longer was there a political cliff, absolute prohibitions or other newsroom bummers. Anything went as long as it  reflected a sentiment first heard at a late-night dormitory bull session or it tore down a tradition, a more, a taboo or someone’s good name.

Gone were longtime journalistic standards, including the rule that no opinion would appear on the editorial page unless it could be imagined being held by an honest citizen in possession of the facts. Crackpots and scoundrels abounded, albeit well-intentioned and in some cases holding high office.

Incidentally, the latest edition of The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems is listing a new ailment. It is the “Immature Personality Disorder,” a condition akin to other impulse control disorders such as oppositional defiant disorder, intermittent explosive disorder and disruptive impulse-control disorder.

Going forward, that will explain a lot.

Craig Ladwig, editor of the quarterly Indiana Policy Review, is a veteran of hometown and metropolitan newsrooms in four states over as many decades.
 

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

1 MAY 2018 DEARBORN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETING NOTES


1 MAY 2018 DEARBORN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETING NOTES

Present: Shane McHenry, President, Art Little, and Jim Thatcher

Also present: Connie Fromhold, Auditor, Andy Baudendistel, Attorney, and Sue Hayden, Administrator

TITLE VI STATEMENT FOR COMPLIANCE was read by Baudendistel as legally required.

OLD BUSINESS

Signatures on Order of the District Authority re: MGPI vs. SDRSD- from the ordinance at 10 April meeting- McHenry read the Order saying that MPGI rates are just and equitable and the ordinance is sustained by the District Authority. Commissioners signed and will be sent to attorneys for both sides. 

NEW BUSINESS
Bright Area Business Association – Cindy Nixon- Wants to have a 5K walk and BBQ and will be helped by the same person who does the Gobble Wobble. They planned routes for minimal road stoppage. Little said they will get some complaints as always with these. Thatcher said if its just once a year. They avoided Salt Fork and chose the first route proposed. Donated money to the Safe House, the Bright Fire House and The Pantry. They give away everything they make. This is for October 13 to start at 9-9:30AM. Firemen help with the traffic and a few extra sheriff dept. can also. Commissioners gave them preliminary approval to do this. They will refine the plans as it gets closer. Listerman wants to make sure that the Beacon and Eagle and the newspaper publish this in advance.  

Highway Engineer, Todd Listerman:

Supplemental Agreement #2 for Bridge #108 Harrison Brookville Road- received INDOT approval for fed funds a year ago. To make sure they keep fed funds they will follow the federal funds process rather than the state funds version. Feds require more geotech etc. $197,000 now instead of $135,000. This will make sure they have the federal funds for the future- Scheduled for 2023 construction - this is for $2million in fed funds. Approved and signed. Ready to go and endangered badger in Indiana etc will be started on for environmental.

Bid Results for Small Structure #419 Georgetown Road-  This is at the bottom of Georgetown Hill. This will remove the 8 ton wt limit. Bid with McAllister Excavating using the Type 1 Corrugated pipe for $245,359.50. This has to be done by June for the 45 days paving for Georgetown Project. The road will be closed for this. Approved. McHenry told Listerman to put Listerman’s number on the notice.

At bottom of White’s Hill is a pipe replacement he is working on there before they do that paving and It also will be closed. Augusta Drive has one too. 

New 911 Phone System & Request to Approach Council - 911 Director, Jared Teaney- letter from Cincinnati Bell. By Jan 2019 have to be on new 911 system. Best proposal he’s seen is form Indigital by Solacom. Surrounding counties are on this. He will need an additional appropriation as it won’t be in time for the Jan date. About $13,000 per year after the first year. Maintenance and software updates are included. They will add a fifth desk position- but not an extra employee. It’s for when another one goes down, or training, or if they have a big event and need to up the staff for that. Part of this will come from 911 state wide funds, and the console work station purchase could be form interlock funds. It is not coming out of Riverboat. It’s from his funds. 911 board is in agreement with this. McHenry said to get a written board letter from the board for Council. Approved to go to Council. 

ADMINISTRATOR – Sue Hayden- update on Annex construction. Cornices should be done within a month. Paving for parking lots done in mid- June. Wrap-up for whole construction should be in late June. 

AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold  -Claims and Minutes form April 17th approved. 

ATTORNEY – Andy Baudendistel- On the Wilker issue with Building Permit with Shelton- the itemized list has not been given to Shelton and it was due in mid April. He has drafted a complaint to appoint a receiver to take possession of the unsafe premises. Bill issued an unsafe building back in October. He wants to get into court to get that process started. This route gives an opportunity to get that finished. If the receiver goes in and says it is not salvageable, then we are in a different position. The receiver can file a mechanics lien against the property and they can then sell the property. He wants permission to move forward to file the complaint. And he wants to allow Shelton to file another Stop Work Order. Baudendistel said he has not heard back from McDaniels. The receiver is up to the court. There is also a small claims judgement against them on week damage from runoff. Dave Klump who lives on Seldom Seen with the small claims judgement. McHenry said they tried to avoid court which can move slowly. If people show up after work order, than they should call the sheriff’s dept. and Shelton. IC 36-7-9-20 is the code for this process. He cannot be kept off his property - but he cannot work on it with the stop work order. Commissioners approved the litigation and the new stop work order. Klump wanted an ordinance or something to prevent people form getting permits without proving they have the funds to complete the project. Also the litigation will allow them to say he’s in contempt of court and jail time can result. Wilkers allegedly violates stop work orders. The fine is $2500 for violating that.. 

COMMISSIONER COMMENTS- none

LATE ARRIVAL INFORMATION- none

PUBLIC COMMENT- none

ADJOURN- 10:10 AM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Monday, April 30, 2018

AGENDA May 1st Dearborn County Commissioners MORNING Meeting


AGENDA
DEARBORN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS MEETING
May 1, 2018 
9:00 a.m., Henry Dearborn Room
Dearborn County Government Center
165 Mary Street, Lawrenceburg, Indiana


I. CALL TO ORDER

II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

III. TITLE VI STATEMENT FOR COMPLIANCE

IV UNFINISHED BUSINESS
Signatures on Order of the District Authority re: MGPI vs. SDRSD

V. NEW BUSINESS
1.  Bright Area Business Association – Cindy Nixon

2.  Highway Engineer, Todd Listerman
1.  Supplemental Agreement #2 for Bridge #108 Harrison Brookville Road
2.  Bid Results for Small Structure #419 Georgetown Road

3.  New 911 Phone System & Request to Approach Council - 911 Director, Jared Teaney

VI. ADMINISTRATOR – Sue Hayden
VII. AUDITOR – Connie Fromhold
1.  Claims/Minutes

VIII. ATTORNEY – Andy Baudendistel
IX. COMMISSIONER COMMENTS

X. LATE ARRIVAL INFORMATION

XI. PUBLIC COMMENT

XII. ADJOURN