INSIDE INDIANA BUSINESS: Divisive issue will not be on 2014 Ballot

2014-02-15T13:57:00Z INSIDE INDIANA BUSINESS: Divisive issue will not be on 2014 BallotGerry Dick Inside Indiana Business nwitimes.com
February 15, 2014 1:57 pm  • 

The Indiana Senate is expected to hold a final vote Monday on a constitutional amendment that aims to further define marriage, but it will not include language dealing with domestic partner benefits and civil unions. Efforts to restore the phrasing removed by members of the House failed yesterday in the Senate, keeping the marriage issue off the ballot until at least 2016. Indy Chamber President Michael Huber says his organization is pleased a "divisive" referendum on the amendment will not be held this year. Freedom Indiana, which is a coalition of employers and universities opposing the measure, calls Thursday's action "a huge victory."

State Launches Tourism Brand

The head of Indiana's Office of Tourism Development says the state's new consumer brand reflects the "assets, allure and attractions" of Indiana. Mark Newman believes "Honest to Goodness Indiana" illustrates a welcoming state without being region-specific. The slogan, which is replacing "Restart Your Engines," will be at the heart of an advertising effort for the state. Newman says the campaign will include print, broadcast and online platforms. Newman hopes the slogan will send a strong message to in and out-of-state tourists.

IU Announces Companies Competing For Med School

Indiana University says four complete proposals have been submitted to construct a multi-million dollar medical school and research campus in southern Indiana. The proposals come from two Indianapolis-based businesses, Browning Construction Inc. and Duke Realty Corp., the Office of Finance and Administration at the University of Southern Indiana and Skanska HealthRealty, which is headquartered in Tennessee.

Three Hoosier Banks Among 'Nifty 50'

A national trade publication has named three Indiana-based banks to its annual "Nifty 50" list. Bank Director magazine ranks the institutions based on profitability and capital metrics. The Hoosier companies are Terre Haute-based First Financial Corp., Warsaw-based Lakeland Financial Corp. and South Bend-based 1st Source Corp.

Soccer Stadium Proposal Hits Statehouse

The owner of the Indy Eleven soccer team has made his case to members of the House Ways and Means Committee for a state-financed, $87 million stadium. Ersal Ozdemir says season ticket demand has been higher than he expected, and limited capacity at IUPUI's Michael A. Carroll Track and Soccer Stadium has forced the team to cut off sales. During an interview late last month, Ozdemir said the team is committed to Indianapolis.

I-65 Project Hits Snag

An interchange planned for Johnson County will not begin as soon as expected. The Indiana Department of Transportation is continuing negotiations with some land owners affected by the proposed I-65 exit in Greenwood. The City of Greenwood Development Director Mark Richards says if deals cannot be reached, the eminent domain process will begin.

Zip Lines Coming to Anderson

Construction is set to begin this week on a $1 million zip line course in Anderson. White River Zip Lines is scheduled to complete the attraction in April. The company says the course will be one of the largest in the Midwest.

Hoosier Wins Olympic Medal

A skier from Indiana has won a bronze medal in the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Nick Goepper, a Lawrenceburg native, was part of a Team USA sweep of the podium in the slopestyle skiing event. Goepper came into the games as the top-ranked athlete in his sport.

Ivy Tech Restructuring More Regions

As Ivy Tech Community College continues to deal with a major budget shortfall and decreasing enrollment, the school has detailed additional reorganization measures. The board of trustees has announced this morning the combination of the Bloomington and Southwest regions. The move means the college will now operate with 10 regional chancellors for its more than 75 sites throughout the state.

Kite CEO: Merger Will Lead to Growth

The chief executive officer of Indianapolis-based Kite Realty Group Trust (NYSE:KRG) says a $2.1 billion merger agreement with Illinois-based Inland Diversified Real Estate Trust Inc. will lead to growth in "attractive" new markets. John Kite also says the deal "substantially" boosts the company's portfolio. The deal is expected to close later this year and the combined operation will be headquartered in Indianapolis.

'The People's Race Car' Aims For Indy 500

Two Indianapolis small business owners have launched a crowdfunding effort to enter a car into this year's Indianapolis 500. Travis Tetrault and Jason Godby have formed Cutters Race Team in hopes of raising $1 million for "The People's Race Car." It would be operated by Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing and feature the names of donors. Tetrault and Godby say they hope to enter future Indy 500 races and other events using the same model. Godby says the track, the sport and the city can benefit from the crowdfunding effort.

RV Company Shuts Down Elkhart Plant

Nearly 125 workers are affected by a Florida company's decision to close a plant in Elkhart. Monaco Towable RV is owned by Florida-based Allied Specialty Vehicles, which says it has decided to exit the RV Towable Market.

Federal-Mogul Closing Another Plant

Federal-Mogul Corp. is planning to shut down a Noble County facility. In a notice to the state, the company says it will cease operations at its Avilla plant in October. The move will affect nearly 100 employees. In 2012, the company pulled out of Michigan City as part of a consolidation effort that sent work to Mexico.

IUPUI Breaks Ground on Major Project

Indiana University President Michael McRobbie says groundbreaking for a $23 million project at IUPUI is an "important milestone" for the campus. University Hall will house the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy and the IU School of Social Work.

Trailer Supplier Plans Winamac Hub

Texas-Based Antares Trailer LLC is planning to locate its Midwest hub to Pulaski County and add nearly four dozen jobs by 2017. The trailer and chassis equipment supplier says the new facility will be operational by next month.

Mayors, Governor Square Off on Tax Proposal

A group of mayors met with Governor Mike Pence Tuesday to discuss business personal property tax proposals being considered at the Statehouse. Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke says he wants the governor to present alternatives to proposed cuts that would be "satisfactory to all units of government." Winnecke says local governments should not be responsible for finding replacement revenue.

South Bend Tower Set to be Sold

The tallest building in South Bend is scheduled to hit the auction block next month. The 25-story Chase Tower will be sold at a St. Joseph County Sheriff's sale March 20.

Rolls-Royce Strikes $1 Billion Deal

Rolls-Royce in Indianapolis will be a major beneficiary of a $1 billion deal by its parent company. The agreement involves military aircraft engines that will be manufactured, assembled and tested at the Marion County operations.

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