DR. BOX SAYS 10% OF HOOSIER TEENS CONSIDER SUICIDE: Recent unreleased survey results show Indiana teens are struggling with increased rates of depression and anxiety, according to the state’s top health official (Barrett, Indiana Public Media). Indiana Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box discussed the findings from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey at the 2022 Indiana Rural Health Association's conference on June 14. “In 2021, nearly 50 percent of students said that they felt sad or hopeless almost every day for two weeks in the past year,” Box said. “And 11 percent of them said they had attempted suicide at least once, or more than once, in the prior year.” The anonymous survey, conducted in both public and private schools across the nation, asks teens about sexual activity, drug use, physical activity, diet and more. In a wide-ranging speech, Box also covered issues such as the opioid epidemic, maternal and infant mortality and children’s behavioral health. In 2022, the American Psychological Association published a report calling children’s mental health a “crisis.” The CDC found that, from March to October 2020, U.S. hospitals saw a rise in the proportion of mental health emergency visits among children: 24 percent for children ages 5 to 11, and 31 percent for children ages 12 to 17.

 

'988' NATIONAL MENTAL HEALTH HOTLINE TO LAUNCH IN JULY: On July 16, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline will launch a new three-digit number, 988. It’s slated to be the mental health version of 911 and make it easier for people to access mental health care (Indiana Public Media). It’s also expected to lead to an increase in calls. But many states already struggle to keep up with the current call volume. In the first three months of this year, Indiana answered 3 out of 4 in-state calls to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, which is about average. The rest of the calls were redirected to other states, and about 12 percent of calls from Indiana during that time period — a little more than 1,000 — dropped off before anyone answered. An analysis of Suicide Prevention Lifeline data reveals that nationwide during the same time period, 18 percent of all calls were abandoned before the caller got help.

 

INDIANA GAS TAX FOR JULY: In July, state taxes on #gasoline in #Indiana are rising 10.9% from $0.56/gal to $0.621/gal, according to Micah Pollak, associate professor of economics at Indiana University Northwest (Howey Politics Indiana). Adding in the Federal tax of $0.184/gal, this will put the total gasoline taxes collected in the state at $0.805/gal, which is a record high and huge increase from $0.516/gal in 2015.

 

TODAY'S JAN. 6 HEARING TO FOCUS ON STATE OFFICIALS: The House select committee examining the January 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol will convene at 1 p.m. (ET) today for its fourth public hearing this month. This session will focus on President Trump's efforts to pressure state officials as part of his broader campaign to remain in office for a second term after losing the 2020 election (CBS News). Expected to appear before the panel are two GOP elections officials from Georgia, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, and Gabriel Sterling, chief operating officer for the secretary of state's office, as well as Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers, also a Republican. Wandrea ArShaye "Shaye" Moss, a former election worker from Fulton County, Georgia, will also appear. Trump lost both Georgia and Arizona to President Biden, but he and officials with his reelection campaign pushed top officials in those states to overturn the election results, in part through a scheme to submit alternate, pro-Trump slates of electors.

 

PENCE WALKING FRAUGHT TIGHTROPE: Former Vice President Mike Pence has emerged from the Jan. 6 hearings in a peculiar position (New York Times). To some Democrats in Congress, he has become something of a hero for resisting Donald J. Trump’s pressure campaign to overturn the 2020 election at a time when American democracy seemed to teeter on the brink. To Mr. Trump and his political base, Mr. Pence is a weakling who gave away the presidency. And to a swath of anti-Trump voters in both parties, he is merely someone who finally did the right thing by standing up to his former boss — years too late, after willingly defending or ignoring some of Mr. Trump’s earlier excesses. The whipsaw of images creates an uncertain foundation for a potential presidential campaign, for which Mr. Pence has been laying the groundwork. Yet the former vice president is continuing with his travels around the country in advance of the 2024 primaries, as he navigates his fraught positioning. Much as he did after the 2020 election, when he tried to keep his tensions with Mr. Trump from becoming public only to have him push them into the light, Mr. Pence continues to walk a tightrope, trying to make the best of a situation he didn’t seek without becoming openly adversarial to the president with whom he served and who remains the leader of the Republican Party. “The situation Mike Pence faces is a political briar patch,” said David Kochel, a Republican strategist who worked on Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign in 2016. “The more he’s praised by Democrats and the media for doing the right thing on Jan. 6, the more some in Trump’s base grow skeptical of his loyalty to the Trump team.” He added, “There is no upside for him to lean into any of this.”

 

GREITENS TV AD 'HUNTING RINOs": Former Gov. Eric Greitens put out a video Monday that showed him and a group of men in tactical gear with guns hunting Republicans who they do not deem adequately conservative, ramping up the war-like messaging of his campaign for U.S. Senate (Kansas City Star). In the video Greitens, a Republican, carries a gun and identifies himself as a Navy SEAL. He says he’s hunting RINOs, an acronym that means “Republicans in name only.” “Today, we’re going RINO hunting,” Greitens says in the video. “The RINO feeds on corruption and are marked by the stripes of cowardice. There’s no bagging limit, no tagging limit and it doesn’t expire until we save our country,” Greitens says in the video. The video comes in the aftermath of two high-profile mass shootings and as Congress appears to be making progress on legislation to address gun violence. Last week, Republicans and Democrats agreed to a bipartisan framework on legislation to address mental health, school safety and make it more difficult for young people to get a gun.

 

TEXAS GOP PREPARING SECESSION RESOLUTION FOR 2023: Texas Republicans are pushing for a referendum to decide whether the state should secede from the U.S. The demand for Texans to be allowed to vote on the issue in 2023 was one of many measures adopted in the Texas GOP's party platform following last week's state convention in Houston (Newsweek). Under a section titled "State Sovereignty," the platform states: "Pursuant to Article 1, Section 1, of the Texas Constitution, the federal government has impaired our right of local self-government. Therefore, federally mandated legislation that infringes upon the 10th Amendment rights of Texas should be ignored, opposed, refused, and nullified. "Texas retains the right to secede from the United States, and the Texas Legislature should be called upon to pass a referendum consistent thereto." The U.S. Constitution makes no provision for states to secede and in 1869, the Supreme Court ruled in Texas v. White that states cannot unilaterally secede from the Union. "If there was any constitutional issue resolved by the Civil War, it is that there is no right to secede," the late Justice Antonin Scalia once wrote.

 

REP. PENCE HAS HEART PROCEDURE: U.S. Rep. Greg Pence is recovering after a weekend heart procedure. Pence, who represents Indiana’s 6th District, went to the hospital after experiencing “minor chest discomfort,” Pence’s office said in a statement Monday (WISH-TV). “I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone to always seek medical attention when you aren’t feeling well. Cardiac care can’t wait. Doing nothing is simply not an option,” Pence said. Pence says he and his family are grateful for the care provided by the team at Columbus Regional Hospital. “I am extremely thankful to the doctors, nurses, and staff…for their proactive attention to keep my heart healthy.”

 

GM/FORD SHOWDOWN OVER ELECTRIC TRUCKS: Mary Barra, General Motors Co.’s chief executive, spent weeks preparing for an onstage unveiling of the electric Chevrolet Silverado, GM’s big play in the fledgling market for battery-powered pickup trucks (Wall Street Journal). Ten miles away at Ford Motor Co.’s headquarters, executives were plotting a pre-emptive public-relations strike, said people familiar with the plan. The day before Ms. Barra’s presentation in January, Ford said it would double factory capacity for its F-150 Lightning electric truck, citing overwhelming demand. Ford shares surged 12% that day. Within days, in private meetings with investors, Ms. Barra was facing questions about why Ford’s truck would beat GM’s to market by a year. “They want to better understand the portfolio of EVs that we have coming,” Ms. Barra said of the meetings, adding that the topic didn’t dominate the conversation. The Ford-GM rivalry—one of the business world’s fiercest for a century—is taking on an urgent new dimension as the companies enter the electric age. Each is under pressure to show Wall Street it can close the gap on Tesla Inc., which has been cementing its EV dominance through profit and sales growth.

 

JOURNALIST AUCTIONS PEACE PRIZE FOR $103M FOR UNICEF - The Nobel Peace Prize auctioned off by Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov to raise money for Ukrainian child refugees sold Monday night for $103.5 million, shattering the old record for a Nobel (AP). A spokesperson for Heritage Auctions, which handled the sale, could not confirm the identity of the buyer but said the winning bid was made by proxy. The $103.5 million sale translates to $100 million Swiss francs, hinting that the buyer is from overseas. “I was hoping that there was going to be an enormous amount of solidarity, but I was not expecting this to be such a huge amount,” Muratov said in an interview after bidding in the nearly 3-week auction ended on World Refugee Day.

 

HPI DAILY ANALYSIS: A mere two days after Indiana Republican Chairman Kyle Hupfer urged delegates to ditch the "RINO" designation saying there were no "enemy Republicans in this arena," we find Missouri Senate candidate Eric Greitens airing an TV ad saying, "Today, we’re going RINO hunting; there's no bagging limit, no tagging limit." This is a violent, abhorrent de-evolution of our political culture that risks the lives of ... Republicans (among others). This needs to be denounced in a vociferous fashion by our leaders or we risk descending into political violence. - Brian A. Howey

 

Campaigns

 

SCHMUHL, MASSILLAMANY ON MORALES/WELLS RACE: During Saturday’s Indiana Republican Party convention, Diego Morales upset incumbent Secretary of State Holli Sullivan to take the party’s nomination, becoming the first Hispanic candidate to be nominated to a statewide Indiana Republican ticket in the process. Morales is a prior employee of the Indiana Secretary of State’s Office but had been fired from that office under one of Sullivan’s predecessors. He also has made false claims the 2020 election was stolen (WISH-TV). Mike Schmuhl, chief of the Indiana Democratic Party, says he sees the choice of Morales as a chance to sell disaffected Republicans on his party’s nominee, Destiny Wells. Schmuhl said Morales’ win was another sign the GOP is growing more extreme. “We need to do what we’ve always been doing, which is going around this state, talking to people about issues that are important to them,” he said. “There’s no question Indiana has been off-kilter with one side of the aisle for a while now. But, I think most Hoosiers are more middle of the road.” Mario Massillamany, chair of the Hamilton County Republican Party, said contrary to Schmuhl’s claims, the party is already coalescing around Morales. “I spoke with Diego today, and, even myself, I was getting text messages and calls from people that supported other candidates. How can we get involved? How can we help out making sure that Diego gets elected?” he said. Massillamany says he couldn’t speak to Morales’ 2020 election fraud claims but said everyone running for secretary of state had a common goal of making Indiana’s elections even more safe and secure. Asked whether there was any risk Morales might drive some voters to Wells, Massillamany immediately replied, “No chance.”

 

PENCE CAMPAIGNS IN CHICAGO, PEORIA: On Monday, in an economic speech at the University Club of Chicago, Mike Pence sounded very much like a candidate — but not much like someone interested in discussing the specifics of what he lived through on Jan. 6 (New York Times). “We’ve all been through a lot over the last several years,” Mr. Pence told the audience. “A global pandemic, social unrest, a divisive election, a tragic day in our nation’s capital — and an administration seemingly every day driving our economy into the abyss of a socialist welfare state.” Mr. Pence, as he made clear in his Chicago speech, has kept his sights trained on the Biden administration and on electing Republicans, including Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia and others who were sharply at odds with Mr. Trump, in the midterms. If Mr. Pence has sharper things to say, he may not do so until the fall, when he has a book coming out. Later on Monday in Peoria, Ill., Mr. Pence called on Republicans to focus on the future and not the 2020 presidential election, an indirect reference to Mr. Trump’s incessant focus on his election loss that continues to this day. “In the days between now and Election Day, let’s cast a positive vision for the future for the American people,” Mr. Pence told a crowd of Republican activists at a Lincoln Day dinner. “Yes, let’s be the loyal opposition. Let’s hold the other side accountable every single day. In the days between now and Election Day, we need you to say yes — yes to the future, yes to a future of freedom and our cherished values. And the Republican Party must be the party of the future.”

 

KUDLOW AND PENCE ON PRESIDENTIAL 'FALSEHOODS': Former Vice President Mike Pence discussed President Joe Biden committing “so many falsehoods” with former Trump adviser Larry Kudlow on Fox Business: KUDLOW: Have you ever seen a president who refuses to accept blame, and I want to add to that, commits so many falsehoods? I’m being very polite here, calling it falsehoods – falsehoods, you know, on any given day. He’s out there saying stuff that just ain’t true. Have you ever seen anything like that? PENCE: Never in my lifetime. I said today that there has never been a time in my life where a president was more disconnected from the American people than we see today.

 

PENCE SAYS HE WON'T LET JAN. 6 'DISTRACT' FROM BIDEN: Former Vice President Mike Pence said Monday he "will not allow the Democrats" to use January 6 to "distract attention from their failed agenda" and praised former President Trump’s record, while indicating, though, that his decision on whether to run for the White House in 2024 will not be impacted by Trump’s own re-election plans. During a sit-down interview with Fox News Digital on the sidelines of a speech on economic policy at the University Club in Chicago, Pence reflected on the current state of the nation under the Biden administration, telling Fox News that President Biden is "embracing the politics of the radical left." "At a time when we have inflation at a 40-year-high, gasoline prices more than doubled since we left office, a crisis at our southern border, war in Eastern Europe, a disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, maybe this just comes from living back in Indiana again, but, those are the things I’m focused on, and frankly, those are the things people talk to me about everywhere," Pence said. "The issues that are bearing upon the American people are, as is often the case, not what Washington is focused on. January 6 was a tragic day, and I know we did our duty, but I will always be proud of our record. And I am not going to allow the Democrats to use that tragic day to distract attention from their failed agenda or to demean the intentions of 74 million Americans who rallied behind our cause.""

 

TRUMP UNHAPPY WITH McCARTHY ON JAN. 6 COMMITTEE: Donald Trump isn't happy with how the January 6 committee's public hearings have been going. He sent out a 12-page, uh, statement last week and dedicated a big chunk of his 90-minute speech over the weekend at a Faith and Freedom Coalition conference to the topic (Cillizza, CNN). And he's directing his ire at the top Republican in the House: California Rep. Kevin McCarthy. “This committee, it was a bad decision not to have representation on that committee,” Trump recently told conservative radio talk show host Wayne Allyn Root. “That was a very, very foolish decision because they try to pretend like they’re legit, and only when you get into the inner workings, you say, 'What kind of a thing is this?’ It's just a one-sided witch hunt."

 

TRUMP CALLS PROBE 'TRUMP DERANGEMENT SYNDROME': Donald Trump has taken to Truth Social to once again attack the 6 January select committee’s investigation. Deriding it as a symptom of “Trump Derangement Syndrome”, he fumed that “crazed” Democrats are “playing the ridiculous Insurrection Card” because of his supposedly strong polling (Independent). The ex-president yesterday defended the violent rioters who stormed the US Capitol in his name as “well behaved”.

 

CARRASCO COMMENTS ON RECORD HOMICIDES:  Cyndi Carrasco, candidate for Marion County Prosecutor released the following statement as Indianapolis surpassed 100 homicides in the first six months of the year (Howey Politics Indiana): “Indianapolis has once again surpassed 100 homicides in the first six months of the year - the third time in history, and the third time in three years. “This is why I'm running for Marion County Prosecutor. Our community is facing a public safety crisis, and we deserve better. We cannot allow record homicides and other violent crimes to become normal or acceptable. We must begin to hold criminals accountable if we are going to make Marion County the safe and prosperous community it once was, and I intend to do so.”

 

MAYOR STYRON REACTS TO GREITENS 'RINO HUNTING' AD: Zionsville Mayor Emily Styron tweeted in reaction to Missouri Republican Senate candidate Eric Gretiens "RINO Hunting" TV ad: "Every Republican has a responsibility to denounce this tweet and others that blatantly call for violence. This is NOT normal. This is NOT patriotic. This is NOT acceptable. It IS criminal.”

 

State

 

GOVERNOR: HOLCOMB ANNOUNCES SOUTH SHORE DOUBLE TRACKING - Gov. Eric J. Holcomb today announced construction is moving forward on one of the largest public transit investments in Indiana’s history – double tracking of the South Shore Line from Michigan City to Gary (Howey Politics Indiana). This project, a prominent piece of Gov. Holcomb’s Next Level Agenda, adds nearly 18 miles of new track over a 26-mile corridor along the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District’s (NICTD) existing South Shore Line between Gary and Michigan City and makes multiple improvements to the existing line. “The Double Track Project is transformative for Northwest Indiana and the positive impacts will be felt across the state for generations to come,” Gov. Holcomb said. “This game changing project is another prime example of how Indiana is laser-focused on connecting people and businesses to our state’s exceptional quality of life, great communities, and pro-growth business environment.” The Double Track Project includes 18 miles of new double track territory including a separated two-track right-of-way along two miles in Michigan City. The project will include replacing the current street-running tracks on 10th and 11th Streets, a new overhead contact system, 22 at-grade crossings, 20 culverts, platform upgrades at five stations and more than 1,400 parking spaces. In addition to the Double Track project, Gov. Holcomb has made the West Lake Corridor extension of the South Shore Line a Next Level Agenda priority. Combined, the Double Track and West Lake Corridor projects are projected to attract approximately $2.7 billion in private investment to Northwest Indiana, and result in over 6,000 new jobs and $5 billion in economic impact by 2048.

 

REVENUE: TAX NOTICES TO HOOSIERS WHO DON'T OWE - Some Hoosiers have gotten notices from the state that they have unpaid taxes that were due earlier this year, only to find out days later, they owe nothing (Smith, Indiana Public Media). The letters threaten that the state will issue a tax warrant if people don’t respond within a few weeks. But some Hoosiers who received them said, when they checked the state’s online tax portal just a few days later, they didn’t owe anything. The Indiana Department of Revenue said those notices are automatically generated. And it said sometimes, people’s payments are processed after the automatic notice goes out.

 

TOURISM: ‘IN INDIANA’ CAMPAIGN TO BEGIN - Indiana tourism officials are betting big on efforts to bring more visitors to the state, in part with a campaign they hope will set the stage for a significant funding increase from the General Assembly next year (Shuey, IBJ). The Indiana Destination Development Corp. on June 8 began rolling out a $5.6 million “IN Indiana” campaign, the first large-scale tourism effort for the state since the pandemic began in early 2020. The campaign is meant to be the state’s answer to successful tourism marketing efforts in neighboring states, such as “Pure Michigan” and Ohio’s “Find It Here,” both of which have been around several years. But those states allocate tens of millions of dollars for tourism annually, while Indiana has traditionally spent $3 million to $5 million a year. Elaine Bedel, CEO of the Indiana Destination Development Corp., said the quasi-governmental agency is leaning heavily on the IN Indiana campaign to be successful enough to justify a planned request for an annual $35 million to $40 million budget from the General Assembly next year when it meets to write the state’s two-year budget.

 

IDEM: KNOWZONE ACTION DAY - The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has issued an Air Quality Action Day (AQAD) and is forecasting high ozone levels for tomorrow, June 21, 2022 in the following regions (Howey Politics Indiana): Central Indiana – Marion, Bartholomew, Boone, Brown, Delaware, Hamilton, Hendricks, Howard, Madison, Shelby; Southeast Indiana – Clark, Floyd; Southwest Indiana – Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Greene, Knox, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh, Warrick ; West Central Indiana – Vigo, Carroll, Tippecanoe.

 

ISP: TROOPER HIT BY DRUNK DRIVER - An Indiana State Police trooper and an Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer were injured in a crash with a suspected drunk driver early Monday (WRTV). The trooper, Keith Martin, is in the hospital with serious injuries but is "alert and conscious," according to Indiana State Police. Both he and the IMPD officer were responding about 3:26 a.m. to assist Speedway police with a semi-truck that was on fire near the 2700 block of High School Road.

 

COMMISSION ON CHILDREN: MEETING WEDNESDAY - The Commission on Improving the Status of Children in Indiana will hold its regular bimonthly meeting on Wednesday, June 22, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Indiana State Library, History Reference Room. The meeting will also be webcast as usual.

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL: ROKITA ARGUES TRANSGENDER LAW IN COURT - Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita said Monday he is glad to defend the law that bans transgender girls from competing in girls school sports (Grove, WTHR-TV). "It is called Hoosier common sense," said Rokita in a statement. "Biological males have certain physiological advantages that make it unfair to allow them to compete for spots on girls sports teams. The law passed by the Indiana General Assembly simply acknowledges that science and protects the integrity of girls sports in K-12 schools." The ACLU is suing to stop the law on behalf of a 10-year-old Indianapolis Public Schools student who was born male but identifies as female. The ACLU has also asked a judge for a preliminary injunction against enforcement until the lawsuit is decided. On Friday, Rokita filed a brief opposing that injunction. "(The law) must be upheld so long as there is a rational basis for excluding biological males from sports for biological females," wrote the attorneys for the Attorney General's Office.

 

IU: 'CLIMATE OF FEAR' IN GOVERNANCE - "A climate of fear." That's how nearly 300 Indiana University faculty members described the Bloomington campus in a recent letter denouncing administrators' response to the months-long graduate labor dispute (Smith, Bloomington Herald-Times). In April, many student graduate workers went on a labor strike for four weeks, requesting union recognition from the IU administration and an official process to discuss benefits, higher wages and fee reduction. In an emergency, all-faculty meeting in May, Bloomington faculty supported graduate student unionization and called for no administrative retaliation against those who participated in the strike. To resolve the labor dispute, Provost Rahul Shrivastav announced a series of changes and new initiatives, including a higher stipend and a specialized task force, but administrators and the board of trustees have been steadfast in rejecting unionization efforts.

 

Congress

 

THE HOUSE will meet at noon, with votes postponed until 6:30 p.m. The Jan. 6 committee will hold its latest hearing at 1 p.m.

 

THE SENATE will meet at 3 p.m., with a vote at 5:30 p.m. on Ana De Alba's judicial nomination.

 

Nation

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN PONDERS NATIONAL GAS TAX HOLIDAY - President Joe Biden said Monday that he’s considering a federal holiday on the gasoline tax, possibly saving Americans as much as 18.4 cents a gallon (AP). “Yes, I’m considering it,” Biden told reporters after taking a walk along the beach. “I hope to have a decision based on the data—I’m looking for by the end of the week.” The administration is increasingly looking for ways to spare Americans from higher prices at the pump, which soared last year and surged even further after Russia invaded Ukraine in February. Gas prices nationwide are averaging just under $5 a gallon, according to AAA.

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN SCHEDULE - President Biden's schedule — 10:30 a.m.: The president and VP Harris will receive the President’s Daily Brief. — 12:45 p.m.: Biden and Harris will have lunch together. — 2:30 p.m.: Biden and first lady Jill Biden will visit a local Covid vaccination clinic hosted by the District of Columbia’s Department of Health. — 3:45 p.m.: Biden will deliver remarks on Covid vaccines for children. — Saturday: The president will depart for Schloss Elmau in southern Germany to attend the G-7 Leaders’ Summit. Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre will brief at 1 p.m. The White House Covid-19 response team and public health officials will brief at 10 a.m.

 

STATE: KREMLIN SPOKESMAN SAYS AMERICANS WILL BE ‘HELD RESPONSIBLE' - When the Kremlin’s chief spokesman said on Monday that two Americans captured while fighting for Ukraine should be “held responsible for the crimes they have committed,” it was an unmistakable signal that Moscow might prosecute them as terrorists or war criminals and hand them a harsh sentence (New York Times). That is what happened earlier this month, when two Britons and a Moroccan who had fought for the Ukrainian armed forces were sentenced to death in Russian-occupied territories. Prosecutors had accused them of “training for the purpose of carrying out terrorist activities” and doing so “for a fee,” making them mercenaries. British officials denounced the proceeding as a sham show trial, while rights advocates called it a clear violation of the rules of war. “Such trials against prisoners of war amount to a war crime,” a spokeswoman for the United Nations’ human rights office said the day after the sentencing. Russia seems to be taking a similar position with the captured American fighters, Alex Drueke, 39, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, maintaining that the men are not members of the Ukrainian army and are not entitled to protection as prisoners of war.

 

KENTUCKY: CANNABIS ADVISORY COMMITTEE HAS FIRST MEETING - A group of 17 members, specially selected by Governor Andy Beshear to discuss medical marijuana for Kentuckians, met for the first time (WKYT). The committee will seek public input and then provide expertise on medical marijuana to the administration. The Team Kentucky Medical Cannabis Advisory Committee took its first steps forward in Frankfort Monday to provide the Beshear administration with expertise on providing Kentuckians with chronic pain and other medical conditions access to cannabis. Co-chairs Ray A. Perry and Kerry Harvey introduced 15 other members chosen by Governor Beshear before focusing on how the committee would operate.

 

ARIZONA: DRAG QUEEN CALLS LAKE A 'HYPOCRITE' -  Kari Lake, the frontrunner in the Republican primary for Arizona governor, condemned the growing cultural clout of drag queens, jumping into the latest social grievance taking hold on the right (AP). But her comments were quickly criticized over the weekend by one of the most popular drag performers in Phoenix, who says Lake is a hypocrite who frequented his performances. Richard Stevens, who performs as Barbra Seville, said Lake, a former television news anchor, regularly attended drag shows and even hired him to dress as Marilyn Monroe at a private party and brought her young daughter. He posted photos on his social media accounts of Lake posing with drag queens and screenshots of his conversations with her.

 

MLB: PITTSBURGH ROUTS CUBS 12-1 - Newly promoted Oneil Cruz drove in four runs and Bligh Madris got three hits in his major league debut, sparking the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 12-1 romp over the Chicago Cubs on Monday night (ESPN). Both rookies were called up from Triple-A Indianapolis earlier in the day and they delivered right away. Cruz, considered Pittsburgh's top prospect, hit a three-run double to deep center field that capped a four-run third inning to push the Pirates' lead to 7-0. He was playing in the third big league game of his career.

 

MLB: VAUGHN PRPOPELS SOX OVER TORONTO 8-7 - Andrew Vaughn needed a triple for the cycle when he came to the plate in the sixth inning. He settled for another single — and a perfect night at the plate (ESPN). Vaughn matched a career high with four hits, including a solo homer, and the Chicago White Sox celebrated Tim Anderson's return with an 8-7 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday. "One through nine, we can all hit. Even the guys on the bench can all hit," Vaughn said. "If we start stringing that together, then good things will happen." Luis Robert and Josh Harrison also homered as Chicago opened a seven-game homestand with its fifth win in seven games.

 

Local

 

CARMEL: COUNCIL OUTLAWS CAT/DOG STORE SALES - The Carmel City Council on Monday night voted 7-1 to ban the sale of cats and dogs at pet stores even though none are currently doing so within city limits (Bradley, IBJ). Councilor Adam Aasen sponsored the amendment to the city’s animal cruelty ordinance, while Councilor Sue Finkam cast the sole vote against the amendment. The ordinance previously said pet stores in Carmel could not source their animals from puppy mills, while the amendment goes further by preventing stores from selling cats and dogs altogether. Businesses that violate the ordinance could be fined up to $2,500 per violation or shut down for multiple violations. Aasen acknowledged there are no pet stores in Carmel that sell cats and dogs. However, he said he wanted to make a proactive move to ensure animals from puppy and kitten mills can’t be sold in Carmel in the future.

 

FISHERS: BIOMEDIT HQ TO LOCATE - BiomEdit, one of Indiana’s newest life-science companies, said Monday it will locate its headquarters in Fishers, but hinted it could eventually move to the new $100 million Elanco Animal Health headquarters campus, which is under construction at the former General Motors Stamping Plant west of downtown (IBJ). The company, formed in April,  focuses on the rapidly growing field of microbiomes, which studies bacteria, viruses and fungi that live inside of animals for new products and medicines. BiomEdit was carved out of Elanco’s microbiome platform and pipeline, and will retain access to the larger company’s labs in Greenfield. The company has 18 employees and said it could add another 10 employees by the end of 2023.

 

INDIANAPOLIS: LAFAYETTE SQUARE MALL TO CLOSE FOR 3 MONTHS - The development firm behind the planned $20 million redevelopment of Lafayette Square Mall in Indianapolis plans to close the property for a three-month period to help with renovation efforts. Sojos Capital LLC said the move will bring the Window to the World transformation to fruition more quickly (IBJ). The goal of the project’s first phase is to turn the mall property into a multicultural mixed-use development with the mall interior featuring year-round “indoor streets” that recreate outdoor scenes from around the world. Sojos Capital first announced plans for Window to the World in November. The overall $200 million project will include future phases featuring rental townhouses, apartments, a new veterinarian office, a pet boarding and dog park facility, and new retail and restaurant tenants.

 

INDIANAPOLIS: WOMAN ACCUSED OF 2 DEADLY CRASHES; 5 TOTAL – In the span of less than a month, a driver with a medical condition is suspected of killing two people in separate crashes (CBS4). One crash killed an Indianapolis emergency room doctor who was out for a walk on May 19. The second crash, which happened weeks later on June 9, involved multiple cars and killed a mother of four. According to court documents, the accused driver, 55-year-old Kelli Anderson, was aware of her medical issues and had been told by doctors that she should not be behind the wheel. She’s charged with reckless homicide and six counts of criminal recklessness in connection with the June 9 crash. She was not charged following the May 19 crash. Prior to those fatal incidents, the investigation revealed Anderson had been involved in at least five at-fault crashes since August 2019.

 

ANGOLA: TRINE U. PRESIDENT TO RETIRE - Over the past 23 years, Trine University in Angola has seen dramatic changes, including a name change, that in part have been the doing of university president Earl D. Brooks II, who on Monday announced his plans for retirement (WANE-TV). Brooks included the following message in an email to faculty, staff, alumni and donors: "I am announcing that I have entered my final year as president of Trine University, and that the Board of Trustees has formed a committee to begin the process for selecting the next leader of this great institution. After the tremendous honor of serving 23 years as your president, Melanie and I will move on to the next phase of our lives and I have notified the board that I will retire effective May 31, 2023. I believe this university is in its strongest position ever – academically, financially, strategically – which makes it the best time to turn over the reins to a worthy successor who will keep us on this extraordinary path we built together.”

 

WESTFIELD: GROUND BREAK SOON FOR MILLENNIUM CENTER - A 64-acre site in Westfield is expected to become a prime live-work-play spot in the rapidly growing city’s downtown once the development is built out (Bradley, IBJ). City officials say construction will begin within months on the first phase of the $190 million Grand Millennium Center that will be bounded by Park Street to the north, Westfield Boulevard to the east, 169th Street/David Brown Drive to the south and U.S. 31 to the west. Plans for the site—whose northern border is only a block west of the $35 million Grand Junction Plaza and Park the city opened early this year—include a library, medical facility, hotel, apartments, restaurants and eventually an event center.

 

ALLEN COUNTY: COMPREHENSIVE PLAN COMING NEXT WEEK - Allen County and the City of Fort Wayne will present a draft of the All In Allen Comprehensive Plan at a series of events next week (WPTA-TV). The public is invited to a “reveal celebration” and feedback sessions that will follow at several different venues. The reveal celebration open house will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Monday, June 27, with a presentation beginning at 6 p.m. It will take place in the Calhoun Ballroom of the Grand Wayne Center in downtown Fort Wayne. Light refreshments will be provided. Additional open houses will be staged around the County at various locations. In each, officials will make a short presentation held 30 minutes after the start of the open house.