OFFICIALS, HUSBAND PAY TRIBUTE TO 'JACKIE': Dean Swihart made two things clear at the funeral of U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski: She would be called just "Jackie" and that she would be referred to in both present and past tense (Howey Politics Indiana). Swihart recalled his wife's love of their swimming pool and their life's mission. "She is more alive than all of us put together in this room," Swihart said. "She is just in another location." Gov. Eric Holcomb paid tribute, saying "We all know that mere words can never adequately be able to express that total sense of shock and abrupt disbelief and the devastating grief we are all attempting to process that took Jackie, Zack and Emma from us all too soon." He continued, "When the kitchen got hot, Jackie always stood strong. She was optimistic and enthusiastic. Many have described her as this force of nature, this positive influence." House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy related his shock at Walorski's tragic death on Aug. 3. "She doesn't just light up the room, she runs the room. It would be Jackie ... who gave me that extra spine we needed. Jackie never had a job, she always have a purpose and a mission. She always had a servant's heart. I worked with Jackie." To her family, "Thank you for sharing her with us." U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise added, "She described herself as a happy Hoosier." She also used a lot of exclamation marks! "She left us too early. Thank you for sharing her with us. She was a special person." Republican Rep. Ann Wagner of Missouri recalled becoming friends with Walorski after they first joined Congress at the same time and lived in the same Washington apartment building for many years. Wagner choked back tears as she called Walorski “one of the best. Jackie was a no-nonsense, get it done and move it or lose it woman of strength and intense integrity,” Wagner said.


SWIHART WANTS INPUT INTO WALORSKI SUCCESSOR: The husband the the late U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski plans to play a role in the selection of her successor (Howey Politics Indiana). Dean Swihart said in a statement, "There are certain realities that we must face as part of this process, and I have been asked by many of you if I will be weighing in on Jackie’s replacement for the 2nd District Congressional seat based on the notice issued today from the Indiana GOP. There was nothing more important to Jackie than public service, and as part of her legacy I know she would want to weigh in on her successor. At this time, I am not ready to engage on this topic, but I do plan to offer my thoughts at a later date. It’s what she would have wanted on behalf of the Hoosier residents and families she has so honorably served from the State House to Washington.” On Thursday, State Rep. Curt Nisly, who lost his May renomination election to State Rep. Craig Snow, filed for the 2nd CD.


AG GARLAND ORDERED SEARCH OF CLASSIFIED DOCS AT MAR-A-LAGO: The Justice Department has asked a Florida judge to unseal the warrant FBI agents used to search former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home this week, Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday, raising the prospect that details of the extraordinary search of the former president’s home could soon be public (Wall Street Journal). “I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant in this matter,” Mr. Garland said in his first public remarks since Monday’s search. “The department does not take such a decision lightly.” Mr. Garland said he filed the motion—which asks to unseal both the warrant and the receipt that lists the items seized—in light of Mr. Trump’s confirmation of the search and the “substantial public interest” in the matter. Aides to Mr. Trump didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Mr. Trump’s lawyers will have time to respond to the Justice Department’s request, including raising any objections to the unsealing, before the judge makes a decision. Mr. Trump was given a copy of the warrant and a list of items that were taken during the search. Monday’s search of Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home and social club in Palm Beach, Fla. was a dramatic escalation of a monthslong investigation into the former president’s handling of classified information. The move, while Mr. Trump was in New York, stoked a political firestorm with Republican lawmakers demanding an explanation for the unprecedented search of a former president’s home.


NUCLEAR WEAPONS DOCS WERE CONFISCATED AT MAR-A-LAGO: Classified documents relating to nuclear weapons were among the items FBI agents sought in a search of former president Donald Trump’s Florida residence on Monday, according to people familiar with the investigation (Washington Post). Experts in classified information said the unusual search underscores deep concern among government officials about the types of information they thought could be located at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club and potentially in danger of falling into the wrong hands. The people who described some of the material that agents were seeking spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. They did not offer additional details about what type of information the agents were seeking, including whether it involved weapons belonging to the United States or some other nation. Nor did they say if such documents were recovered as part of the search. A Trump spokesman did not respond to a request for comment. The Justice Department and FBI declined to comment.


TRUMP WANTS WARRANT RELEASED: Former President Donald Trump called late Thursday for the “immediate” release of the federal warrant the FBI used to search his Florida estate, hours after the Justice Department had asked a court to unseal the warrant, with Attorney General Merrick Garland citing the “substantial public interest in this matter” (AP). In messages posted on his Truth Social platform, Trump wrote, “Not only will I not oppose the release of documents ... I am going a step further by ENCOURAGING the immediate release of those documents.” He continued to assail the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago as “unAmerican, unwarranted and unnecessary.” “Release the documents now!” he wrote. The Justice Department request earlier Thursday is striking because such documents traditionally remain sealed during a pending investigation. But the department appeared to recognize that its silence since the search had created a vacuum for bitter verbal attacks by Trump and his allies, and that the public was entitled to the FBI’s side about what prompted Monday’s action at the former president’s home.


MAN ASSAULTS CINCINNATI FBI OFFICE; HAD BEEN AT CAPITOL JAN. 6: After an hourslong standoff that closed an interstate and disrupted rural life, law enforcement officers shot and killed a man who they said tried to break into the F.B.I.’s Cincinnati office on Thursday (New York Times). Ohio authorities declined to confirm the man’s name or describe his motives. But two law enforcement officials familiar with the matter said investigators were looking into whether the man, whom they identified as Ricky Shiffer, had ties to extremist groups, including one that participated in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. The day after former President Donald J. Trump’s private residence in Florida was searched by the F.B.I., someone with an account bearing Mr. Shiffer’s name posted messages on Mr. Trump’s social media platform, Truth Social, recommending that “patriots” go to Florida and kill federal agents. On Thursday, the same account also appeared to confess to an attack on the F.B.I. The attack in Ohio came three days after agents served a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago, Mr. Trump’s beachfront home and club, and a day after the F.B.I. director told reporters that online threats against federal law enforcement were “deplorable and dangerous.”


GREEN, MRVAN SPAR ON ABORTION: The Crown Point Republican seeking to represent Northwest Indiana in Congress would vote in favor of a nationwide policy similar to Indiana's new, near-total abortion ban if she's elected Nov. 8 to the U.S. House (Carden, NWI Times). Jennifer-Ruth Green describes herself on her campaign website as "unashamedly and unapologetically pro-life" and a person who believes "life begins at conception" and "a child in the womb is a distinct, developing, whole human being." Asked by The Times for her reaction to the new abortion restrictions approved last week by Indiana's Republican-controlled General Assembly, which prohibit all abortions from the moment of conception with limited exceptions for pregnancies caused by rape or incest, or to prevent permanent physical impairment or the death of a pregnant woman, Green's campaign expressed support for the statute. "Jennifer-Ruth is pro-life and believes there is an acceptable middle ground, compassionate toward both women and unborn children. In order to save as many lives as possible, she will always support exceptions to save the mother’s life, and would support exceptions for rape and incest to advance federal legislation to stop brutal late-term abortions when babies can feel pain, prohibit taxpayer-funding for abortions, and stop abortions for underage daughters without parental consent," said Ashleigh Presnar, Green's campaign manager. Green personally said, "Good people can disagree on this issue, but most Americans recognize that abortion isn’t a good thing. It's a symptom of bigger problems in our society, and it’s a tragedy." "The vast majority of women who have abortions — especially black and Hispanic women — do so for economic reasons. They feel like they have no other choice. Women deserve better. As a country, we need to provide a stronger safety net for moms so they can choose life, and if they can’t raise a child, make it easier to put their child up for adoption by a loving family," Green said.


MRVAN COMMITTED TO RESTORING RIGHT: U.S. Rep. Frank J. Mrvan, D-Highland, said if he wins a second two-year term representing Lake, Porter and northwest LaPorte counties in Congress, he's committed to legislatively restoring the abortion rights of American women as they were before June 24 when a conservative majority on the U.S. Supreme Court repealed the high court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision (NWI Times). "I support the precedent of Roe v. Wade and have voted for legislation that protects the right to abortion services. I also have voted for legislation that establishes a statutory right for individuals to obtain contraceptives," Mrvan said. "Make no mistake, in the upcoming election, the Republican nominee will advocate to implement a federal ban on women’s freedom to access safe reproductive care, while I will advocate to codify Roe v. Wade for all women of this nation, including my two daughters," he added.


HOUSE POISED TO PASS FLAGSHIP DEM BILL TODAY:  A flagship Democratic economic bill perched on the edge of House passage Friday, placing President Joe Biden on the brink of a back-from-the-dead triumph on his climate, health and tax goals that could energize his party ahead of November’s elections (AP). Democrats were poised to muscle the measure through the narrowly divided House Friday over solid Republican opposition. They employed similar party unity and Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote Sunday to power the measure through the 50-50 Senate. The package is but a shadow of Biden’s initial vision and was produced only after a year of often bitter infighting between party leaders, progressives and centrists led by Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., empowered by that chamber’s even split. Ultimately, Democrats thirsty to declare victory forged a compromise on abiding goals like reining in pharmaceutical costs, taxing large companies and, especially, curbing carbon emissions. They are hoping to show they can wring accomplishments from an often fractiously gridlocked Washington that alienates many voters.


HPI Daily Analysis: Why was a former president keeping classified documents at his Florida mansion? What was he planning to do with them? Do they pertain to U.S. nuclear weapons capabilities? In 2016, Donald Trump called the mishandling of classified documents "disqualifying" and in 2018, signed a bill into law changing the mishandling of classified material a felony. Today we'll be getting a look at the warrant. Should be interesting. - Brian A. Howey




NISLY FILES FOR 2ND CD: One candidate is filing to run for late Congresswoman Jackie Walorski’s seat (WNDU-TV). According to the Indiana Secretary of State’s office, Curt Nisly is so far the only person to file to run for the seat. Nisly is currently representing the 22nd district in the Indiana House of Representatives but lost in the Republican primary to Craig Snow back in May after their districts were combined because of redistricting.


GLYNN DROPPED ABORTION REFERENCE FROM CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: Less than a day after the passage of Indiana's near-total abortion ban, Democrats called out an Indiana Republican candidate in one of the most competitive districts in the state for making a change to his website: Fred Glynn, who is running Carmel's House District 32, removed a line stating that he believed life begins at conception (Lange, IndyStar). "I will always support this type of legislation," he wrote on the now deleted section on his website. He's running against Democrat Victoria Garcia Wilburn in the general election. Glynn, who told IndyStar he would have voted for the abortion bill, brushed off the change as part of a wider attempt to update his website as he transitions his focus to the general election, but it was the only change to his "Issues" page since April. Whatever the reason for the change, it's a sign that even Republicans know that the General Assembly's abortion vote could put candidates in tight races at risk, and a sign that Democrats are prepping to capitalize on it.


INDEMS ON GREEN'S ABORTION STANCE: Here's a response from the Indiana Democratic Party (Howey Politics Indiana): "Jennifer-Ruth Green is being dishonest with the voters about her '100% pro-life...all the way' stance because she knows voters are opposed to the GOP's big-government style overreach to take away woman's freedom and personal right to choose.  If she is true to her 'unapologetically' pro-life statements, Jennifer-Ruth Green in her own words would oppose the extreme Senate Bill 1 because it allows for the exceptions of rape, incest and life of the mother. She proudly announces her support for and endorsement by the Susan B. Anthony organization, which has a stated mission for Congress to pass federal legislation to restrict abortion in every state." - Drew Anderson, spokesman for the Indiana Democratic Party.


AP ANALYZES KANSAS REFERENDUM RESULTS:  An increase in turnout among Democrats and independents and a notable shift in Republican-leaning counties contributed to the overwhelming support of abortion rights last week in traditionally conservative Kansas, according to a detailed Associated Press analysis of the voting results. The findings reinforce a sense in both parties that the Supreme Court’s decision may have altered the dynamics of this year’s midterm elections. Here’s how it played out: In 2020, Trump carried Kansas by 18 points. Last week, not a single county in the state favored the ballot measure as much as it had supported the former president, the AP found. In 99 of the state’s 105 counties, support for the abortion measure was more than 10 percentage points lower than its support for Trump against Biden. In 29 of those counties, that difference was more than 20 points. And in 14 Kansas counties that Trump won, majorities rejected the amendment.


TRUMP STATEMENT: Statement by Donald J. Trump (Howey Politics Indiana): "Not only will I not oppose the release of documents related to the unAmerican, unwarranted, and unnecessary raid and break-in of my home in Palm Beach, Florida, Mar-a-Lago, I am going a step further by ENCOURAGING the immediate release of those documents, even though they have been drawn up by radical left Democrats and possible future political opponents, who have a strong and powerful vested interest in attacking me, much as they have done for the last 6 years. My poll numbers are the strongest they have ever been, fundraising by the Republican Party is breaking all records, and midterm elections are fast approaching. This unprecedented political weaponization of law enforcement is inappropriate and highly unethical. The world is watching as our Country is being brought to a new low, not only on our border, crime, economy, energy, national security, and so much more, but also with respect to our sacred elections! Release the documents now!"


TRUMP ALLIES WARN GOP NOT TO BASH FBI, DOJ: Some senior Republicans have been warned by allies of Mr. Trump not to continue to be aggressive in criticizing the Justice Department and the F.B.I. over the matter because it is possible that more damaging information related to the search will become public (New York Times). When Mr. Trump left the White House, he took with him boxes containing a mishmash of papers, along with items like a raincoat and golf balls, according to people briefed on the contents. The National Archives tried for months after Mr. Trump left office to retrieve the material, engaging in lengthy discussions with his representatives to acquire what should have been properly stored by the archives under the Presidential Records Act.


REPUBLICANS CONTINUE TO BLAST GARLAND: Attorney General Merrick Garland is under fire from congressional Republicans after admitting Thursday to personally approving the raid on former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate (Fox News). The raid Monday was related to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) effort to collect records and materials the former president took with him from Washington, D.C., to Mar-a-Lago, a matter the agency referred to the Justice Department. GOP lawmakers say Garland's admission did little to tamper criticism of the raid or concerns of the precedent it set. "AG Garland's statement about the integrity of the FBI/DOJ would have far more credibility if he at least acknowledged the recent corruption at the Bureau/Dept responsible for eroding public trust," Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., wrote on social media. "The public's declining confidence in the FBI/DOJ hasn't happened without cause."




49% BACK FBI SEARCH AT MAR-A-LAGO: Roughly half of respondents in a new poll believe the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago on Monday was prompted by a search for evidence that former President Donald Trump committed a crime, evidence of a sharp partisan divide over the bureau’s unprecedented probe into the residence of the former commander in chief (Politico). Forty-nine percent of those surveyed in the POLITICO/Morning Consult poll said the search warrant on Trump’s Florida estate was primarily conducted because of evidence he committed a crime, and the same share said they approved of the search. Thirty-nine percent said the search was conducted mostly to damage Trump’s political career, and 37 percent disapproved of the FBI’s actions.


CHENEY TRAILS BADLY IN WYOMING POLL: A new University of Wyoming poll shows that Republican U.S. House candidate Harriet Hageman leads Congresswoman Liz Cheney by nearly 30 points as primary election day looms (Wyoming Public Media). The survey was conducted by the Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center between July 25th and August 6th. It received 562 responses from likely Wyoming voters in the upcoming primary and has a margin of error of plus or minus four percent. Overall 57 percent of those planning to vote in the Republican primary will vote for Hageman with only about 28 percent indicating they will vote for Cheney. It also shows that 41 percent are voting against Cheney as opposed to strongly supporting one of her opponents. UW Political Scientist Jim King said that says a lot.




HEALTH: BABY MILK PROGRAM BEGINS - The Indiana Department of Health has partnered with the Milk Bank to host milk drives to provide donor milk to Hoosier babies (Capital Chronicle). The infant formula shortage continues to impact families and infant health across Indiana and the rest of the United States. Indiana has been particularly affected by not only shortages in stores and safety recalls associated with Abbott Nutrition, but also breastfeeding rates below the national average. State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said, “In the absence of a mother’s own milk, pasteurized donor human milk offers optimal nutrition, easy digestibility and immunologic protection against diseases. Since every ounce counts, we have launched six milk drives around the state to ensure that there is enough donor milk for every infant in need.” The Every Ounce Counts initiative is a statewide collaborative effort to increase both immediate and long-term milk donations.


FSSA: MENTAL HEALTH PILOT PROGRAM FOR JAILS - The Division of Mental Health and Addiction, part of the Family and Social Services Administration, on Thursday announced a pilot program to address mental health and substance use disorders for Hoosiers incarcerated while awaiting trial (Downard, Capital Chronicle). The program, called the Integrated Reentry and Correctional Support program (IRACS), will operate in five Indiana county jails and aims to redirect Hoosiers from the criminal justice system into treatment using peers and support services in a Sequential Intercept Model. “The first three steps an individual takes upon exiting the justice system are often the most important steps they will take in their recovery journey,” said Douglas Huntsinger, executive director for drug prevention, treatment and enforcement for the state of Indiana, in a release. “Regardless of how an individual ended up in the justice system, how they move forward matters. By providing access to peers and wraparound services while individuals are incarcerated, we intend to reduce recidivism and future involvement in the justice system.” Programs will operate in Blackford, Daviess, Dearborn, Delaware and Scott County jails.


JUSTICE: CHARGES V. CELADON EXECS DROPPED - In an uncommon turn of events, all fraud charges against two former Celadon Group Inc. executives have been dropped, ending a federal criminal case that had been ongoing for more than two years (Orr, IBJ). On Thursday, Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson granted prosecutors’ request to dismiss the charges against Celadon’s former president and chief operating officer, Eric Meek, 42, and its former chief financial officer, Bobby Peavler, 42. Both Meek and Peavler were charged in December 2019 with multiple counts of fraud and making false statements to a public company’s accountants while they were working at the now-defunct Indianapolis-based trucking company. Meek had faced 10 charges, while Peavler faced 12. In their motion, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, prosecutors said, “the government believes that the indictment should be dismissed with prejudice, in the interests of justice.” The filing did not elaborate on the reason for prosecutors’ request, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Indiana declined a request from IBJ to comment on the action.


IDEM: $4M AVAILABLE FOR MARION COUNTY RECYCLING - The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) recently announced the availability of $4 million in funding to implement the Central Indiana Waste Diversion Pilot Project. This funding is available for waste diversion and recycling projects. To be eligible, projects must be located in Marion County (Howey Politics Indiana). Pilot project funding is available through IDEM’s Recycling Market Development Program. Projects must demonstrate waste diversion from landfills and establish a dedicated Indiana-based market for commercial use of the material. Proposals are accepted through Oct. 1, 2022. “We are excited to announce the Central Indiana Waste Diversion Pilot Project, which will strengthen the state’s recycling infrastructure and help divert waste from ending up in landfills,” said IDEM Commissioner Brian Rockensuess. “This funding will also improve supply chains, boost market development, and increase job growth in central Indiana.”


DNR: NEW CABIN OPENS AT McCORMICK'S CREEK - DNR Director Dan Bortner and Indiana State Parks staff dedicated a new family cabin at McCormick’s Creek State Park on Aug. 5 (Howey Politics Indiana). Called the Sunset Cabin, the new overnight option at the state park is available for reservations starting at noon tomorrow. Reservations can be made at or by calling 866-622-6746. The 1,400-square foot cabin has a fully accessible entrance and first floor, sleeps eight and is air-conditioned and heated, so it is available for use year-round. It is located in the family cabin area and overlooks the McCormick’s Cove Nature Preserve. The design and layout is similar to that of the Centennial Cabin, which was constructed and dedicated during Indiana State Parks’ centennial year in 2016.




CHAO MEETS WITH JAN. 6 PANEL: The House select committee investigating January 6, 2021, has recently interviewed former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and is in talks with former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos as well as former National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien, multiple sources tell CNN. Chao and DeVos, both members of former President Donald Trump's Cabinet, resigned a day after the attack on the US Capitol and discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from power (CNN). News of Chao's cooperation, and the committee's discussions with DeVos and O'Brien have not been previously reported. It comes after former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with the panel on Tuesday. The 25th Amendment was a topic of focus during Pompeo's meeting, CNN previously reported.


THE HOUSE will meet at 9 a.m. to take up the Inflation Reduction Act, with first votes predicted between 10-11 a.m., and ast votes predicted between 2:30-3:30 p.m.


THE SENATE is out.




WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN SIGNS BURN PIT BILL -  President Joe Biden signed legislation into law Wednesday that will provide health care and benefits to veterans exposed to burn pits in Afghanistan and Iraq, achieving a long-term, personal goal (Shutt, Capital Chronicle). “I was in and out of Iraq over 20 times,” Biden said of prior trips to the war zone he took as both a U.S. senator and as vice president. “And you could actually see some of it in the air — burn pits the size of football fields, and incinerated waste of war such as tires, poisonous chemicals, jet fuel, and so much more I won’t even mention.” “When they came home, many of the fittest and best warriors that we sent to war were not the same,” Biden added. “Headaches, numbness, dizziness, cancer. My son Beau was one of them.”


WHITE HOUSE: XI TELLS BIDEN 'NO TIME FOR CRISIS' - Four days before U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, Chinese leader Xi Jinping got on the phone with President Biden and delivered a message: Now isn’t the time for a full-blown crisis (Wall Street Journal). Mr. Xi—who views bringing Taiwan under Beijing’s control as central to his vision of Chinese national revival—was frustrated that months of diplomatic efforts had failed to stop Mrs. Pelosi’s planned trip, according to people close to China’s decision-making process. In the July 28 conversation, Mr. Xi warned Mr. Biden of unspecified consequences if Mrs. Pelosi went to Taipei, people briefed on the call said. But he also indicated that he had no intention of going to war with the U.S. and said both sides needed to “maintain peace and security,” according to the people.


WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN SCHEDULE - President Biden's schedule - The president has nothing on his public schedule. VP Harris: 2:05 p.m.: The VP will deliver remarks at an event with Oakland students and Mayor Libby Schaaf. 3:10 p.m.: Harris will tour the Chabot Space & Science Center, where she will deliver remarks at 4:35 p.m. 5:40 p.m.: Harris will depart Oakland, Calif., en route to Los Angeles.


JUSTICE: TRUMP RECEIVED SUBPOENA MONTHS AGO FOR CLASSIFIED DOCS - Former President Donald J. Trump received a subpoena this spring in search of documents that federal investigators believed he had failed to turn over earlier in the year, when he returned boxes of material he had improperly taken with him upon moving out of the White House, three people familiar with the matter said (New York Times). The existence of the subpoena helps to flesh out the sequence of events that led to the search of Mr. Trump’s Florida home on Monday by F.B.I. agents seeking classified material they believed might still be there, even after efforts by the National Archives and the Justice Department to ensure that it had been returned. The subpoena suggests that the Justice Department tried methods short of a search warrant to account for the material before taking the politically explosive step of sending F.B.I. agents unannounced to Mar-a-Lago, Mr. Trump’s home and members-only club.


FBI: UNABLE TO RETRIEVE GREENWOOD SHOOTER COMPUTER DATA - The Federal Bureau of Investigations said Thursday they can't retrieve any data from the laptop recovered of the suspect in the Greenwood Park Mall shooting (WRTV). The laptop was found in an oven at the suspect's apartment sometime after the shooting took place. It is unclear how long it was left inside the oven. FBI Indianapolis Special Agent in Charge Herbert Stapleton said the agency is still working to recover data from a mobile device found in a toilet in the mall bathrooms. He said part of the process is trying to dry out the phone. "We are not at a point where we have to top any type of forensic examination because we do still believe we are going to be able to recover some type of data but we don't know for sure," Stapleton said.


LABOR: JOBLESS CLAIMS RISE BY 14K -  The number of Americans who signed up for unemployment benefits rose last week to the highest level since November, though the U.S. job market continues to show signs of strength (AP). Applications for jobless aid climbed by 14,000 to 262,000 and now have risen five out of the last six weeks, the Labor Department reported Thursday. The four-week average for claims, which smooths out weekly ups and downs, rose by 4,500 to 252,000, also the highest since November.


CDC: LOOSENS COVID RECOMMENDATIONS - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday loosened many of its recommendations for battling the coronavirus, a strategic shift that puts more of the onus on individuals, rather than on schools, businesses and other institutions, to limit viral spread (Washington Post). No longer do schools and other institutions need to screen apparently healthy students and employees as a matter of course. The CDC is putting less emphasis on social distancing — and the new guidance has dropped the “six foot” standard. The quarantine rule for unvaccinated people is gone. The agency’s focus now is on highly vulnerable populations and how to protect them — not on the vast majority of people who at this point have some immunity against the virus and are unlikely to become severely ill.


MEDIA: SUNDAY TALK - ABC “This Week”: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan … Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.). Panel: Sarah Isgur, Donna Brazile, Alex Burns and Dana Milbank. CBS “Face the Nation”: Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) … Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.). “Fox News Sunday”: Retired Gen. Jack Keane … Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah). Panel: Jason Riley, Susan Page, Jonathan Turley and Marie Harf. NBC “Meet the Press”: Panel: Matthew Continetti, Amna Nawaz, Eugene Robinson and Amy Walter. CNN “Inside Politics”: Panel: Leigh Ann Caldwell, Laura Barrón-López, Mario Parker and Edward-Isaac Dovere.


MLB: CUBS DOWN REDS 4-2 IN FIELD OF DREAMS GAME - Standing among rows of Iowa cornstalks, Nico Hoerner had Johnny Bench on his left and Billy Williams right next to him (ESPN). "Pretty incredible," Hoerner said. For sure. Even for a "Field of Dreams." Led by Drew Smyly and a 10-hit attack, the Chicago Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 4-2 on Thursday night in Major League Baseball's second "Field of Dreams" game. Nick Madrigal had three hits for Chicago in a throwback ballpark a short walk away from the main field for the 1989 movie.


MLB: KC DUMPS SOX 5-3 -  Zack Greinke worked out of trouble to hold Chicago scoreless into the seventh inning, and the Kansas City Royals beat Dylan Cease and the White Sox 5-3 on Thursday (ESPN). Greinke allowed nine hits but didn't walk a batter, striking out five while throwing 95 pitches in 6 1/3 innings. The White Sox loaded the bases with no outs on three straight singles in the third, but Grienke struck out Eloy Jimenez and Jose Abreu and induced Yasmani Grandal's inning-ending grounder.




EVANSVILLE: OFFICIALS SEEK EXPLOSION CAUSE — Authorities worked Thursday to determine the cause of a house explosion in a southern Indiana neighborhood that killed three people and left another person hospitalized (AP). The explosion Wednesday afternoon in Evansville damaged 39 homes and crews on Thursday morning completed a secondary search of buildings that had been left unstable by the explosion and no more victims were found, Fire Chief Mike Connelly told reporters. “It’s a huge relief, for everybody,” the chief said of the results of the secondary search. Eleven of the damaged homes were uninhabitable and will have to be demolished, Connelly said, and finding a cause is expected to be a “very tedious process — and lengthy.”


RICHMOND: SHOT OFFICER IMPROVES SLIGHTLY — A Richmond police officer remains in "extremely critical condition" following a shooting during a traffic stop Wednesday (WTHR-TV). State Police said Officer Seara Burton was assisting other officers with a traffic stop in the area of 12th and C streets around 6:30 p.m. Burton and her K-9 partner, Brev, were conducting an "open-air sniff" of a moped operated by 47-year-old Phillip M. Lee, of Richmond. Police said the dog indicated the possible presence of narcotics.  On Thursday evening, Richmond Police Chief Michael Britt said Burton was still in "extremely critical" condition after suffering a gunshot wound to her head. He said surgery has been performed and she is initially showing slight signs of responsiveness, but has yet to regain consciousness.


RICHMOND: SHOOTING SUSPECT WAS 'CAREER CRIMINAL'— The suspect in the shooting of a Richmond police officer is what some would call a 'career criminal' with convictions dating back to 1994 (Kenney, WRTV). Phillip M. Lee, 47, of Richmond has served more than 20 years in prison for different crimes, according to records obtained by WRTV Investigates, and had just been released from prison on December 31, 2021 after serving 3.5 years in state prison on drug offenses. Records show Phillip Lee has been in and out of prison since 1994 and his twin brother, Mike Lee, tells WRTV his trouble with the law started way before that. "He’s been locked up since he was 14 years old," said Mike Lee. “I’m not saying he’s innocent at all. He’s a habitual offender. He only knows prison life.”


INDIANAPOLIS: $190M RUNWAY PROJECT BEGINS - The Indianapolis Airport has begun construction on a $190 million project to enhance capacity of one of its runways and build a new taxiway (Beane, Indiana Public Media). Airport officials said the project will be an improvement for passenger and cargo planes, and the future of the airport in Indianapolis. They said the project will create more than 2,700 jobs and more than $14 million has already been spent. Much of the money comes from a grant from the Federal Aviation Authority. “This is public asset management in its finest form,” Indianapolis Airport Authority Executive Director Mario Rodriguez said in a news release. “This project will pay dividends to the community for decades to come and will play a crucial role in Indiana’s economic growth over time.” The initial phase of the construction is expected to be completed this October, with two additional phases in 2023 and 2024. “To put it into perspective, the project will use enough concrete to replace the smallest pyramid in Giza, which is equivalent to building a two-lane highway from Indianapolis to Terre Haute,” said Jarod Klaas, IAA senior director of planning and development.


BEECH GROVE: CHAMPION COACH ARRESTED FOR DEALING COCAINE - State championship-winning Beech Grove basketball coach Mike Renfro is suspended from his teaching and coaching positions “pending further investigation” following his arrest Sunday in Henry County (IndyStar). Renfro, 45, faces two felony charges — one for dealing cocaine between one and five grams and another for possession of cocaine. He also faces misdemeanor charges for operating a vehicle while intoxicated and public intoxication. Renfro was released on bond Tuesday and his initial hearing is set for Aug. 30 in New Castle. Beech Grove superintendent Laura Hammack issued a statement directed to Beech Grove families and staff Wednesday night and released the same statement to IndyStar Thursday morning, writing she is “deeply troubled by these allegations.”


HAGERSTOWN: TEAM TO LL WORLD SERIES - Hagerstown Little League is heading to Williamsport (WRTV). On Thursday, the team defeated North Laurel Little League from London, Kentucky 4-3 in extra innings to secure a spot in the Little League World Series. The Hagerstown team is the first Indiana team since 2012 to reach the Little League World Series. They will represent the Great Lakes Region in the tournament in Pennsylvania.


DELAWARE COUNTY: PROGRAM ENGAGES ALL INMATES - Nearly all eligible inmates at the Delaware County jail are taking part in a peer coaching state pilot program. As IPR’s Stephanie Wiechmann reports, five counties in the state are trialing the method aimed at helping substance abuse disorders and supporting people during and after incarceration (Indiana Public Media). The program’s official name is the Integrated Reentry and Correctional Support Program — IRACS for short. Delaware County Sheriff Tony Skinner says everyone besides those in maximum security and lockdown are eligible to participate, because of liability. Travis Jester heads the program in Delaware and Blackford counties. He says inmates have responded well to the peer coaches, because the coaches have lived their experiences, too – incarceration or substance abuse. “I’m a convicted felon. And now I’m a Director of Recovery over northeast Indiana. And I feel like, if not 90, all 100 percent of the people in there that we’re working with could do my job.”


HANCOCK COUNTY: 20 NFPs GET ARP FUNDS — Officials have approved over $1 million in federal funds to more than 20 nonprofit organizations serving the county (Greenfield Reporter). The planned distributions stem from the over $15 million in COVID-19 relief Hancock County is getting from the American Rescue Plan. County leaders earmarked $3 million for nonprofit organizations and the rest for infrastructure and mental health initiatives. The Hancock County Board of Commissioners enlisted the Hancock County Community Foundation to guide the decision-making process for the funds for nonprofits. The community foundation recommended granting up to $1 million of the funds to those groups for proposals in two of three categories. One is rapid response, which includes projects small to moderate in scale, clear in scope and that could be accomplished in a year or less. The other category is mid-range, consisting of projects moderate to large in scale.


FLOYD COUNTY: MARKETING FOR TECH PARK BEGINS - Lots at the Novaparke Innovation & Technology Campus are officially for sale, as Floyd County officials welcome an important phase in the development of the business park (Suddeath, News & Tribune). Fourteen lots ranging in size from one to over five acres are available for purchase. “We’re looking obviously for the research and development, biomedical, life science, advanced manufacturing types of firms,” said Don Lopp, director of operations for Floyd County. County officials have acknowledged since the initial phases of the project that Novaparke can’t match the land size of River Ridge Commerce Center in neighboring Clark County. Instead, Floyd County is seeking to establish a tech hub and advanced manufacturing base at Novaparke.


VIGO COUNTY: 500 HOMELESS IN COUNTY - A summer survey has counted 531 individuals as being homeless in Vigo County (Greninger, Terre Haute Tribune-Star). The survey found 140 people were unsheltered living on the streets or in abandoned homes, tents or vehicles. Another 391 people were staying in hotels, shelters, recovery houses or in housing programs for people who do not have housing, also known as transitional housing. "I think the numbers could be a lot higher but we had a couple of setbacks on the day we did the survey. There were areas that we knew we needed to look but couldn't get that done," said Brendan Kearns, chair of the Homeless Council of the Wabash Valley and a county commissioner. "The numbers that I would consider to be conservative are the unsheltered, but as far as the sheltered or those in transitional housing, those are very accurate," Kearns said, "because throughout the years we have been able to build a good communication system and identify where people are in programs."


DAVIESS COUNTY: COMMISSIONS PASS BROADBAND READY RESOLUTION - The Daviess County Commissioners have approved a resolution that will allow it to say it is broadband ready. Following a recommendation from the Daviess County Economic Development Corp., the county unanimously approved the resolution which creates a streamlined service for permitting for broadband providers (Grant, Washington Times). “We are trying to get broadband to every part of the county. We will partner with anybody but right now we are working with RTC to make Daviess a gig-county in three to five years,” said President of the Daviess County Commissioners Michael Taylor. “Broadband is about quality of life. People need the freedom to work from home and our kids need it to do what they need to do and complete projects online and schools have e-learning days. Not having broadband out in the county hurts our students.” The resolution makes the Daviess County Economic Development Corp. the contact point for firms looking to expand broadband opportunities in the county.


BARTHOLOMEW COUNTY: COMPANY PROPOSES BROADBAND COVERAGE - The company providing Bloomington with city-wide, high-speed internet is expanding to nearby counties. Paris-based Meridiam said it can service more than 80 percent of Bartholomew County, or almost 12,000 homes, with internet speeds of one Gigabit per second (Indiana Public Media). The Bartholomew County Council Tuesday designated all unincorporated parts of the county an economic revitalization area. The request will be up for a final vote next month, which would set the stage for a tax abatement for Meridiam, now operating as Hoosier Networks, LLC in Indiana. The proposed tax abatement would last 20 years and cover 95 percent of Meridiam’s business personal property (fiber) in Bartholomew County. Meridiam would invest $33 million in the system, and the county will spend $4 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds.