Starke County News Items

Renovations on Track for New North Judson Town Offices

posted Dec 18, 2014, 10:05 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 18, 2014 
By: Mitch Columbe, WKVI

The North Judson Town Council received an update on the new location of the town offices this week. The First Farmers Bank and Trust building on Lane Street was donated to the town back in August where it has been under reconstruction. The building will house the water department, clerk treasurer’s office and serve as meeting space for the town council. North Judson Clerk-Treasurer Donna Henry says the interior work is almost complete which is phase 1 of what needs renovated. She says they will hopefully be moved in within the first quarter of 2015.

In the meantime, town council meetings will be moved from the community center to the basement of the North Judson-Wayne Township Public Library. Henry says the council will meet there until the new location is ready because heating is more adequate during this time of year. A special meeting for the council to finalize the year is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 30 at 8 a.m. CST.

The town also received the fall distribution of property taxes totaling $167,965.68. Henry says the money received is to help pay bills throughout the year.

Starke County Commissioners Award Bridge Design Bids

posted Dec 18, 2014, 9:46 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 18, 2014 
By: Mary Perren, WKVI 

The Starke County Commissioners Monday chose a South Bend-based engineering firm for design work on two bridges slated for construction in the summer of 2015. Jones Petrie Rafinski submitted the lowest price of the four requests for proposals, coming in at $61,000. Highway Superintendent Rik Ritzler says they’ve designed several bridges for the county and will be able to realize additional cost savings by continuing that work. The company is now tasked with drawing up plans for a new bridge on 700 North over the Robbins Ditch and on 100 East over the Smith Ditch.

The replacements are part of the county’s ongoing bridge replacement and maintenance plan. In 2001, 54 percent of Starke County’s bridges were deficient according to state standards. That number dropped to 32-percent in 2012 and is currently at the state average of 22.5 percent. Ritzler says it will drop to 14 percent once the bridges on the summer replacement schedule are completed. His goal by 2019 is to have all of the county’s bridges in compliance with state standards through a replacement and maintenance program.

SCEDF Looks to Improve Communication with Public

posted Dec 17, 2014, 9:50 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 17, 2014 
By: Anita Goodan, WKVI 

The Starke County Economic Development Foundation (SCEDF) Board of Directors met recently to discuss the past, present and future of the organization.

One concern that the board members felt that needed improvement was communication with the public. SCEDF Executive Director Charlie Weaver stated that what they are doing is not secretive and work done by the organization could be more transparent.

There is a lot of work to be done to bring a new business to Starke County. While preliminary planning and ongoing negotiations cannot be announced publicly, the final plans are typically announced.

Work continues at the Knox Industrial Park to make transporting product in and out of the area easier for truck drivers and to quicken the process. At a recent Knox City Council meeting, Weaver discussed construction of a new shell building in the industrial park to attract business owners who are simply looking for empty facilities to start manufacturing product. Weaver mentioned that new construction is a longer process where a shell building could provide a place to start rather quickly.

Visitation Restrictions in Place at Local Hospitals

posted Dec 17, 2014, 9:48 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 17, 2014 
By: Anita Goodan, WKVI 

Visitor restrictions are now in place at IU Health Starke Hospital and at IU Health LaPorte Hospital to help prevent the spread of the flu.

An increasing number of flu cases have been reported in the entire state and the policy is in place at many IU-based hospitals statewide.

IU Health Starke and LaPorte hospitals are allowing healthy adults aged 18 and older to visit patients in the hospital. Only two people may visit with a patient at a time. Parents are urged to refrain from bringing children to the hospital as visitors this flu season.

If you are going into the hospital for treatment and have the flu or cold-like symptoms, it is encouraged that you wear a protective mask provided at hospital entrances.

This temporary policy went into place on Monday, Dec. 15 and remains in effect until further notice.

To prevent the flu, wash your hands frequently, cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and stay home if you are sick.

Old Fire House in North Judson May Be Demolished

posted Dec 15, 2014, 9:27 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 15, 2014 
By: Mitch Columbe, WKVI

The North Judson Town Council is considering options for the former fire station located at the corner of Main Street and Keller Avenue. The 1950s-era building is currently used as a community center. Town Clerk-Treasurer Donna Henry tells WKVI News it needs numerous, costly repairs. A new roof alone carries an estimated price tag of $40,000. Henry says one of the options could be to demolish the building and turn the space into a green area. She adds grant funds may be available from the Office of Community and Rural Affairs to cover that cost. Henry stresses no final decisions have been made about what to do with the building. The North Judson Town Council meets there this evening at 7 p.m.

Ancilla College Adding College Dorms

posted Dec 12, 2014, 9:41 AM by North Judson Public Library

Ancilla College is adding college housing for students.  You can find out more by reading the article on their website -

Starke County Historical Society Building Fund Gets a Boost

posted Dec 11, 2014, 9:47 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 11, 2014 
By: Ed Hasnerl, WKVI

The Starke County Historical Society received a check for $5,000 from the Starke County Genealogical Society on Sunday at the annual museum open house on Sunday. The gift will be added to the museum’s building and acquisition fund. The museum is currently using only the Main Street home of former Gov. and Mrs. Henry F. Schricker.

The County’s Historical Society is remodeling the former office of Dr. Walter Fritz on U.S. 35 South, in Knox, for much needed additional display and storage space. Dr. Fritz continues his practice in facilities on Edgewood Drive.

To make a gift to assist the Museum in its expansion project, contact President Ron Vendl at 772-5393 or Vice President Jim Shilling at 772-4311.

Ron Vendl, president of the Starke County Historical Society, accepts a check for $5,000 from Blanche Richardson, President of the Starke County Genealogical Society, while other members of the Genealogical Society look on, Front Row: Ron Vendl, Alice Dolezal, Blanche Richardson, Ida Kennedy, Susie Szynalski, Back Row: Audrey Kinezian and Patty Williams.                               

The Starke County Historical Society has launched a three-year, $200,00 capital campaign to buy this building at 1520 S. Heaton St. in Knox.

Ancilla Announces Next CNA Class

posted Dec 11, 2014, 9:39 AM by North Judson Public Library

Published: December 11, 2014 
By: Mitch Columbe, WKVI
Prospective Certified Nursing Assistant Students can register now for a spring semester course at Ancilla College. Applicants must pass a physical, a drug screen and a background check. A high school diploma is not required for this course.

The program consists of 32 hours of classroom instruction and 75 hours of clinics. Classes will meet Monday and Wednesday nights from 6 until 10 p.m. EST starting Monday, Feb. 2. Students must also complete clinical hours on Saturdays from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. After completing the requirements, students will take the state certification exam. It costs an additional $75.

Licensed CNA’s can work in long-term care facilities, home health, hospice groups and assisted living facilities. Applications are due Monday, Jan. 26. The class costs $800 and payment arrangements can be made with the business office at Ancilla. Students looking for financial assistance can contact Deb at WorkOne in Plymouth at 574-936-8919.

If you are interested, contact Rhonda Arvesen, in the Nursing & Health Sciences department, at 574-936-8898 Ext. 327.

Community Services of Starke County Collection Sites

posted Jun 18, 2014, 3:29 PM by North Judson Public Library   [ updated Aug 18, 2014, 10:03 AM ]

Community Services of Starke County’s Food Pantry has two collection sites in North Judson.  You can drop off much needed food items during regular business hours at: 

Dr. Bejes’ Office                   
414 Lane Street                     

Dr. Dalphond’s Office
108 West State Street

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