Gemma DiCarlo

Reporter

Gemma DiCarlo comes to Indiana by way of Athens, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 2020 with a degree in Journalism and certificates in New Media and Sustainability. She has radio experience from her time as associate producer of Athens News Matters, the flagship public affairs program at WUGA-FM. 

Gemma is originally from Harrisburg, Oregon, and is looking forward to covering all things Michiana. 

Rick Bowmer/AP Photo/File

On Sept. 24, Michigan's Department of Health and Human Services announced a suspected second human case of EEE in Montcalm County, leading to another night of aerial mosquito treatments.

According to some experts, the frequency and intensity of the recent EEE outbreaks in Michigan and northern Indiana could be related to climate change.

The first EEE outbreak in the area occured from 1942-1943. The next was from 1973-1975, and since then, outbreaks have become more and more frequent.

Flickr

Local elections offices will begin mailing absentee ballots to Michigan voters on Thursday, Sept. 24, the start date for early voting. Voters who have requested absentee ballots can also pick them up at to their local clerk’s office

Anyone can request an absentee ballot in Michigan without an excuse. Voters can fill out the application online or by hand, and the deadline to request an absentee ballot in Michigan is Friday, October 30. 

https://www.southbendin.gov/2020/09/16/city-opens-application-period-for-south-bend-alive-grant-program/

The South Bend Office of Community Initiatives will hold an information session on Wednesday, Sept. 23, about its South Bend Alive grant program, which will fund local initiatives to reduce youth gun violence.

Director of Community Initiatives Moe Scott said there is $300,000 of grant funding available. Grants range from $5,000 to $25,000, so anywhere from 12 to 60 local programs could benefit.

 

Sept. 22 is National Voter Registration Day, which the Indiana Citizen Education Foundation used to encourage voter registration among young Hoosiers.

On Tuesday, ICEF President Bill Moreau announced that the foundation’s One More Voice campaign will now focus exclusively on first-time eligible voters. The campaign's entire social media budget is now devoted to encouraging 18 and 19-year-olds to register to vote.

WVPE News Stock Photos

The South Bend Community School Corporation was scheduled to vote on whether to return to in-person learning at its board meeting on Sept. 21; however, board members voted to postpone the decision until next Monday, Sept. 28.

School Board President John Anella said the board wanted to give families a chance to hear its detailed reopening plan, which was presented during the meeting, before the district’s Return to School survey closes on Sept. 25. 

 

Gemma DiCarlo

At the Elkhart County Commission meeting on Monday, Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson and his team presented their plan for a consolidated courthouse in downtown Elkhart. The proposal is part of an ongoing effort to try and keep a county court presence in the city of Elkhart. 

Along with city engineer Tory Irwin, Chamber of Commerce President Levon Johnson and consulting group Structurepoint, Roberson presented a combined building that would include the county courthouse, a city public safety facility and an attached parking garage. 

 

Gemma DiCarlo

Mayor James Mueller and the South Bend Heritage Foundation announced this morning that they will build a permanent supportive housing complex on the corner of Hope Avenue and Patty Lane, near Edison Park.

 

Heritage Foundation Executive Director Marco Mariani said that the project will take a housing-first approach to homelessness. By addressing the most basic need of the chronically homeless — shelter — Hope Avenue Homes will allow residents to focus on other concerns in their life. 

 

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

School City of Mishawaka and Mishawaka Parks and Recreation announced Wednesday that they would use a government grant to target internet deserts in their community. That means free WiFi in city parks and for some families.

DAVID ZALUBOWSKI / AP

The Indiana National Guard is scheduled to end its six-month deployment to aid Indiana’s food banks on September 30.

https://www.phmschools.org/sites/phmschools.org/files/return_to_learn_schedule_v8_9.12.20.pdf

Monday was the first day of in-person learning for some students in the Penn-Harris-Madison School Corporation. Pre-kindergarten to 3rd grade students now have the opportunity to return to the classroom.

Screenshot from Facebook Live

During a biweekly news conference City of South Bend and St. Joseph County officials expressed optimism about COVID-19 statistics currently trending downward. 

"We acknowledge the impact of the cases at Notre Dame. Much of that has washed out," Dr. Mark Fox with the St. Joseph Co. Health Department said.