Pence issued the following statement:
"I believe roads mean jobs, and today's vote on the Illiana Corridor Project brings us one step closer to more jobs for northwestern Indiana. I am grateful to the members of the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission for their vote in favor of this important project, which will bring jobs and economic growth to northwestern Indiana and throughout the state.
“The innovative funding for this project will bring new investment dollars into the state transportation system and allow the Indiana Department of Transportation to make further infrastructure investments that will benefit the region for generations to come.”...
In LaPorte this weekend the Christmas season will be in full-effect with Santa, free train rides and the first annual downtown Cookie Walk. City of LaPorte Downtown Director Tiffany Bley says the cookie walk takes place during the Downtown Holiday Open House from 10am to 5pm and custom La Porte tins will be available for purchase at the Greater La Porte Chamber of Commerce at 803 Washington Street. The tins come with a list of participating businesses with cookies to help fill the tins to complete the Cookie Walk. Each tin is $5.00 and only limited to the first 100 Cookie Walk participants so people are encouraged to arrive early. Over 15 businesses are participating, offering a free cookie per customer with a tin.
Bley says while your check out the downtown Holiday Storefront Competition, which continues through December 22nd and showcases several businesses competing for the top prize, the People's Choice Award. Pictures of the participating windows are posted to the Downtown La Porte Facebook page. Free train rides and visits with Santa take place in the Chamber of Commerce train depot area from 11am to 2pm....
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller was in Crown Point Thursday to personally file a lawsuit against an out-of-state foreclosure consultant for allegedly bilking over $5,000 from two Region homeowners in an alleged mortgage-rescue scam.
In a press release, Attorney General Zoeller said "This case is particularly egregious" because the company violated the state's consumer protection laws by allegedly collecting high fees upfront. A Lake County homeowner reported paid $2,630 dollars in pre-service fees and a Jasper County resident $3,099 with both victims never receiving the promised services or refunds. In addition, Liberty Credit Law failed to register a $25,000 surety bond with the Indiana Attorney General's office which is required before collecting money up front and other services.
The lawsuit says, the company violated the Credit Services organization Act, the Mortgage Rescue Protection Act, the Home Loan Practices Act and Indiana's Deceptive Consumer Sales Act. Zoeller admits that while lost fees are rarely returned, the Consumer Protection Assistance Fund, that contains monies from funds recovered from companies sued for violating consumer protection laws, will go to help those victims. In total, Lake County victims will receive $8,175 from the fund.
The State Attorney general is seeking an injunction against Liberty Law Credit, restitution for the victims, civil penalties and investigative costs.
When checking online with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, Liberty Credit Law, which was not accredited by the BBB and has an "F." Also, 65 complaints were registered to the BBB in the last three years.
Distressed homeowners at risk of foreclosure need not pay a large fee to a for-profit company, when advice on avoiding foreclosure is availablefor free from the Indiana Foreclosure Prevention Network at 1-877-GET HOPE (1-877-438-4673). Hoosiers who believe they have been a victim in a foreclosure consultant scam can file a complaint by visiting www.IndianaConsumer.com or by calling 1-866-382-5516.
Zoeller thanked Deputy Attorney General Laura Turner for her work on the case andher dedication to the Homeowner Protection Unit.
(Photo: from RNT file)
In Highland, tipsters are informing the Region News Team a water main break in the 94-hundred block of Kennedy Avenue has been repaired. Highland Police had Kennedy Avenue, between Hart Road and 43rd Street, down to one-lane in each direction for much of this afternoon so crews could finish the necessary repairs....
The mother of a three-year old child is in police custody charged with child abuse over a video that had surfaced on YouTube, which has since been taken down. Gary Police Corp. Gabrielle King says after viewing the video, which showed the 25 year old woman disciplining the child for allegedly not knowing his A-B-C's, officers were able to identify the woman, who was taken into custody at her home at 6pm Wednesday night. Anyone with additional information regarding this case is asked to contact Detective Alex Jones at 881-7477. ...
(Photo Courtesy of Karl Berner)
The Sycamore Room at Woodland Park in Portage was filled this morning as the NIRPC Executive Board and Full Commission used a weighted vote to decide the fate of the proposed Illiana Expressway and I-65 widening projects. The proposed projects would construct a 47-mile-long link between I-65 in Lake County and I-55 in Illinois, and also would widen I-65 from 4 lanes to 6 lanes between US 30 and Highway 231.
Using the weighted vote clause, The Commission voted roughly 76% to roughly 24% to include the projects in the NIRPC 2040 Comprehensive Regional Plan.
The Illiana Expressway and I-65 widening projects have passed a major hurdle, and when INDOT finishes its Tier 2 Study, the fate of the proposed projects will lie with the Federal Highway Administration for final approval. If approved, ground for the projects should break in 2015, with the Illiana Expressway slated to open for travel some time in 2018.
To view video of today's vote click http://youtu.be/2wTLno8tYHA
After the Illiana vote, the NIRPC Board passed two resolutions, one in favor of continued state funding of the Regional Development Authority beyond 2015 and the other supporting the expansion of commuter rail in northwest Indiana. For more information on these resolutions, click http://www.rdatransformation.com/blog/nirpc-backs-rda-funding-renewal-and-south-shore-expansion/...
In Gary, police report a 38 year old man was hospitalized with serious injuries after being shot around 9:30 Wednesday night in the five-hundred block of East 47th Place. Public Information Officer Corp. Gabrielle King says when officers arrived at the scene Dante Lamar informed them he had been shot at a nearby home, which officers checked and found no else injured. Anyone with any information regarding this shooting is asked to contact either Corp. James Neilson at 881-4754 or Detective Lorenzo Davis at 881-4738. ...
Ice fishing, ice skating, and other activities on or around frozen ponds and lakes can be great outdoor fun during the winter, but every year many people drown after falling through ice. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Law Enforcement, is urging parents to closely supervise all activities their children participate in on frozen waterways. If you see someone fall through the ice, call 911 immediately with clear and concise instructions on the location of the victim and that going into the water after the victim should be the last option in a rescue effort.
Here are a few tips to remember before going onto a frozen lake or pond:
—No ice is safe ice.
—At least 4 inches of ice is recommended for safe ice fishing; 5 inches for snowmobiling.
—If you don’t know, don’t go.
—Wear lifejackets or flotation coats.
—Carry ice hooks and rope gear....
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