Brandon Smith/IPB News

Indiana lawmakers will study topics in the coming weeks that include human trafficking, a racial achievement gap in K-12 schools and unemployment benefits for gig economy workers.

County Judge Strikes Down Gary Immigration Ordinance

Nov 24, 2020
(Justin Hicks/IPB News)

A Gary, Indiana, ordinance that limited how city officials could cooperate with federal immigration authorities was struck down recently by a Lake County judge.


DETROIT (AP) — A federal appeals court has suspended a decision that would allow groups to offer free or reduced price rides to polling places in Michigan. The court issued a stay to allow the Republican-controlled Legislature to appeal the ruling by a federal judge in Flint. Since 1895, Michigan has banned paying someone to transport a voter unless the voter can’t walk. It was aimed at preventing fraud or undue influence. But Judge Stephanie Dawkins Davis said the state law conflicted with federal law. Attorney General Dana Nessel, a Democrat, declined to appeal.

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Mediation help is now available to Hoosier landlords and their tenants at risk of eviction, free of charge from the Indiana government.

Brandon Smith/IPB News

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The head of the Indiana Supreme Court is calling for action to improve implicit bias and racial disparity in court systems. Chief Justice Loretta Rush issued a statement earlier this month amid protests and demonstrations following George Floyd's death. In it, she says the "gravity of the events" require a response from the judicial branch.

Justin Hicks/WVPE

Today the St. Joseph County Court system in South Bend issues information about how the courts are modifying practices due to the coronavirus.

The information released is below.n 

Elkhart County Moves Forward with Courts Consolidation

Feb 25, 2020


Elkhart County is moving forward in the planning process to consolidate County Courts into one location.


The plan is to eliminate the Elkhart and Goshen courthouses and instead  have all the County’s courts in one space.

“Both buildings are old," County Commissioner Mike Yoder said. "And especially the building in Elkhart has become a maintenance dollar blackhole, it’s not a good work environment for our employees, and there’s no way to meet current Indiana Supreme Court guidelines for security.”

Brandon Smith/IPB News

The final report for the National Judicial Opioid Task Force was released this week and includes recommendations and resources for courts responding to addiction.

The task force was formed in 2017.  Indiana Chief Justice Loretta Rush co-chairs the group and says it was created in response to the growing number of court cases related to substance abuse.

Indiana Supreme Court Hosts Pretrial Reform Summit

Oct 7, 2019
Brandon Smith/IPB News

All of Indiana’s county courts are expected to use a new assessment tool come January for helping determine bail amounts and whether a person charged with a crime should be released before trial.

The state Supreme Court hosted a recent pretrial summit to help prepare the system for that change.

A federal judge heard an abortion provider’s case against the state Monday over its efforts to open a clinic in South Bend. The group argues the state department of health’s licensing requirements are unconstitutionally vague.

Senate Sends Foster Care Reform Bill To Governor

Apr 18, 2019
Brandon Smith

The Senate sent a bill to the governor’s desk Thursday that aims to reform Indiana’s foster care system.

CASA Volunteers Advocate At The Statehouse

Mar 19, 2019
Lauren Chapman

Hundreds of Court Appointed Special Advocates, or CASAs, from around the state gathered at the Statehouse for their annual CASA advocacy day.