Mon, July 07 2014 17:53
Indiana Telecommunications Association (ITA) has named CenturyLink, Inc as its 2014 Company of the Year. ITA is a 116-year-old trade association representing telecom companies that provide services to customers throughout the state. The award was made on the basis of CenturyLink's investments and continuing cooperative work on behalf of the members of ITA.
CenturyLink is Indiana's third largest telecommunications company, providing services to 144,000 access lines. The company employs about 360 people and last year had an annual payroll of $20 million. Its network investment in Indiana is nearly $850 million, providing service in more than 100 communities and in 41 counties (including Starke County) across Indiana.
Headquartered in Monroe, Louisiana, CenturyLink is an S&P 500 company and is included among the Fortune 500 list of America's largest corporations. For more about the company, visit www.centurylink.com.
Mon, July 07 2014 17:03
Phend & Brown, Inc.
Phend & Brown, Inc., the contractor on both CR 300 projects, has issued an update on when those projects will begin and how they will affect traffic. On Monday, July 7, mobilization of equipment and the installation of traffic control signage will begin, and on Thursday, July 10, CR 300 will be closed just south of the intersection with SR 8 west, and dewatering equipment will be installed.
Check back regularly to this site for additional updates on both CR 300 projects. The construction trailer for both projects is located in the parking lot of SCILL at 1300 Kloeckner Drive.
Thu, July 03 2014 16:53
The United States Department of Labor announced this morning that the national unemployment rate fell from 6.3% in May to 6.1% in June, the lowest rate since September of 2008. The drop came on the heels of an additional 288,000 jobs created in June, which was the fifth month in a row that more than 200,000 jobs were created, the first time that has happened since the period of September, 1999 to January of 2000.
Wed, July 02 2014 18:30
The Town of North Judson in Starke County has adopted a Contractor Permit Ordinance which requires contractors or subcontractors doing business in or with the Town to obtain a permit and be properly insured. The new ordinance does not apply to homeowners who perform their own renovations, but does apply to anyone hired to build, remodel, or renovate a structure.The Contractor must show proof of public liability and property damage insurance of at least $1 million and have a certificate of insurance on file with the Town. Permits are not transferable and by granting a permit, the Town is not confirming the qualifications of the contractor.
Failure to obtain such permit may subject a contractor to a fine of $500 for a first offense and additional fines and legal actions for continuing violations. A full copy of this ordinance can be found by clicking on the link below.
North-Judson-Contractors-Permit-Ordinance.pdf (199.70 kb)
Wed, July 02 2014 18:13
Two Starke County school corporations were recently awarded part of more than $9 million through the Secured School Safety Grant Program, administered by the Indiana Office of Homeland Security. This program gives matching grants to school corporations that request funding to conduct a threat assessment, purchase equipment to restrict access to the school, or expedite the notification of first responders, or employ a school resource officer. The size of the maximum grant is determined by the size of the school corporation. Corporations of less than 1,000 students are eligible for up to $35,000, and for corporations greater than 1,000 students up to $50,000.
Oregon-Davis School Corporation received $32,000 to employ a school resource officer, while the Knox Community School Corporation received the sum of $30,752.60 for equipment.
Tue, July 01 2014 17:10
CNBC has just issued its annual report on the top states for business for 2014. That report scores all 50 states on 56 measures of competitiveness, developed using input from business groups, economic development experts, companies, and the states themselves. States receive points based on their rankings in each metric. Those metrics are then separated into 10 broad categories, weighting the categories based on how frequently they are cited in state economic development marketing materials. The study thus claims that the states are ranked based on the criteria they use to sell themselves.
Indiana dropped one place from the 2013 report, finishing this year at 19th. For states that are contiguous to Indiana, only Ohio in 18th place finished higher, while Michigan was at 26th, Illinois at 27th, and Kentucky was 36th. Indiana scored highest in the rankings in the areas of infrastructure and cost of living (7th) and education (15th).
Since the report was first issued in 2007, Indiana has been ranked as low as 13th, and as high as 26th, with an average placement for the 8 years of the report of 18th place. That is far better than any of the contiguous states, with Ohio in 27th, Illinois in 30th, and Michigan and Kentucky in 36th place.
Fri, June 27 2014 21:40
The Indiana Department of Education has recently announced that Culver Community High School was named as a Four Star School for the 2012-13 school year. That distinction is given to schools that perform in the upper 25th percentile of schools in the performance on ISTEP and ECA state exams, as well as their rating determined by the national No Child Left Behind statute's Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP).
A part of Starke County is included within the Culver school boundaries, and Culver students are a part of the North Central Area Vocational Cooperative which has housed several of its programs in Starke County, including Automotive Technology and Welding Technology which are sponsored and conducted by SCILL, the workforce training affiliate of the Foundation..
Fri, June 20 2014 19:18
According to figures released this morning by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, the unemployment rate for Starke County declined from 6.9% in April to 6.6% in May. That rate has dropped in 2014 from 8.4% in January to its present rate. Starke County was one of only 15 counties in Indiana that saw a decrease in rates for the month of May. For the county, this marks the lowest unemployment rate since April of 2008 when it was 6.2%.
The State of Indiana rate held steady at 5.7% for May, due to about 2,000 unemployed Hoosiers returning to the labor force to look for work. For the month, Indiana added 4,800 private sector jobs.
The national unemployment rate for May was unchanged at 6.3%. Neighboring Midwestern states showed no change in Kentucky (7.7%), up in Michigan (7.5%), and down in Ohio (5.5%) and Illinois (7.5%).
Wed, June 18 2014 17:37
Accion, a nonprofit microlender, has announced that it is expanding its service area beyond Lake and Porter counties in northwest Indiana to include Starke, Pulaski, Jasper, Newton, and LaPorte Counties. Accion has been providing loans from $500 to $50,000 in Indiana since 2008 to existing and start-up small businesses that have been unable to get bank financing. As of March 2014, they have provided 70 small businesses loans totaling $455,627.
For more information concerning Accion, contact Ron Gifford, Business Advisor for Starke and Pulaski Counties for the Indiana Small Business Development Center by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by telephone at 574-772-5627.
Fri, June 06 2014 17:07
The number of jobs created in the month of May was on target with estimates at 217,000 jobs created, which had the effect of leaving the national unemployment rate at 6.3%, unchanged from April. The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that most of these new jobs came in lower-paying industries.
For the month, 145,000 more people were employed, while 46,000 more were unemployed. Long-term unemployment continues, although the average duration of joblessness fell to 34.5 weeks, the lowest level since November of 2010.