Friday, May 24 2013 2:30 PM EDT2013-05-24 18:30:56 GMT
The City of Indianapolis has fired two employees facing a federal indictment over the Indy Land Bank scandal. In a press release Friday, the city said it terminated Reggie Walton and John Hawkins. ReggieMore >>
In a press release Friday, the city said it terminated Reggie Walton and John Hawkins.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 2:14 PM EDT2013-05-24 18:14:00 GMT
Simon Pagenaud turned the fastest lap on Carb Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Friday at 225.8 mph. There was no time to waste when the track opened at 11:00 am. All 33 drivers were out Friday. RyanMore >>
Ryan Briscoe's car briefly caught on fire during Friday's practice. The safety crew put it out and Briscoe got out safely. He should still be okay to race on Sunday.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 1:50 PM EDT2013-05-24 17:50:26 GMT
A recent increase in dog attacks on Indiana letter carriers has prompted the U.S. Postal Service to urge the state's dog owners to do a better job of keeping their canines under control. The Postal ServiceMore >>
A recent increase in dog attacks on Indiana letter carriers has prompted the U.S. Postal Service to urge the state's dog owners to do a better job of keeping their canines under control.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 12:59 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:59:34 GMT
A new Indiana law that will create standards of care and open opportunities for midwives is winning praise from supporters of home births. The Journal & Courier reports the law will require new regulationsMore >>
A new Indiana law that will create standards of care and open opportunities for midwives is winning praise from supporters of home births.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 12:55 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:55:02 GMT
Plenty of race fans will travel to Indianapolis this holiday weekend. But nationwide, the American Automobile Association predicts travel will be down slightly compared to last year. In fact, air travelMore >>
Plenty of race fans will travel to Indianapolis this holiday weekend. But nationwide, the American Automobile Association predicts travel will be down slightly compared to last year. In fact, air travel is expected drop off all summer.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 12:31 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:31:18 GMT
The 500 Festival Memorial Service gets underway at noon in downtown Indianapolis. The solemn ceremony honors the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice fighting for the United States. Notable guestMore >>
The 500 Festival Memorial Service gets underway at noon in downtown Indianapolis. The solemn ceremony honors the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice fighting for the United States.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:47 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:47:34 GMT
The American Legion says it's allocating $1 million to veterans affected by the Oklahoma tornado. The Indianapolis-based veterans organization announced this week the money will be used to cover relocationMore >>
The American Legion says it's allocating $1 million to veterans affected by the Oklahoma tornado.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:46 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:46:25 GMT
A woman faces sentencing Friday for her part in the shooting death of a female basketball star. The shooting happened last July at Ben Davis Park on the city's west side. Witnesses say Vincennes UniversityMore >>
A woman faces sentencing Friday for her part in the shooting death of a female basketball star.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:29 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:29:00 GMT
Authorities say a cat might have started a central Indiana house fire by knocking over a lamp. The fire happened Thursday in the town of Chesterfield just east of Anderson. Chesterfield deputy fire chiefMore >>
Authorities say a cat might have started a central Indiana house fire by knocking over a lamp.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:22 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:22:46 GMT
It will likely be months before a judge rules on whether a new trial should be granted to a man convicted of killing an Indiana University student who disappeared during a 2000 bike ride. A Morgan CountyMore >>
It will likely be months before a judge rules on whether a new trial should be granted to a man convicted of killing an Indiana University student who disappeared during a 2000 bike ride.More >>
TIPTON COUNTY -
Indiana farmers feed millions of us each year. Now they're digging into "homegrown" energy.
13 Investigates uncovers a surge of wind farms that will soon fan across the state, promising an economic boost. But at what price to the environment and homeowners?
The winds of change are blowing across central Indiana.
"A lot of the farmers around here have signed up," said Tipton County Farmer Steve Pierce.
He's talking about his neighbors who have signed up to produce homegrown energy on the same fertile ground seeded to feed millions.
But the thought of miles of wind turbines soon sprouting up across the eastern edge of Tipton County isn't exactly the farming future Pierce had in mind.
"I'm going to sit here and hear a "swoosh, swoosh, swoosh," he told 13 Investigates about the turbines that will soon move near the land his family has been farming for more than 70 years.
"There's a 'whoosh,' as the blade passes the tower and sometimes a very faint discernable hum," confirmed Andy Melka, a spokesman for the developer E.ON Climate and Renewables.
Yet plans are humming right along for a 125 turbine-wind farm that will stretch from Tipton into western Madison County.
It's one of three wind farms potentially headed to Tipton County alone.
"It's all driven by the landowner, whether they're interested or not," explained Tipton County Commissioner Mike Cline.
What's the big draw?
Developers with E.ON say it's simple: high tension transmission lines to inject power into the electrical grid to sell.
"They will sell it wherever they can get the most money," said Cline.
"We certainly are not hiding the fact that this is a money making venture for us," Melka told 13 Investigates. He says a portion of the power generated has already been sold to Indiana & Michigan Electric.
But first, there must be wind.
"The wind seems to average around 7 to 7 1/2 meters per second. Which is somewhere on the order to 15 to 18 miles per hour," Melka said, explaining why Tipton County is a good choice.
For the last three years E.ON has set up four - "met towers" 260 feet up in the air to capture every wind gust, it's speed and direction.
According to Melka, it "will produce enough energy to equal about 60,000 average American homes."
The result, some say, are lucrative deals for the so-called Wildcat wind farm in Tipton County.
Commissioners signed a $1.2 million economic agreement with E.ON.
That's in addition to a property tax boost of $3.5 million over the next ten years. It will share another $8 million in road work.
"We expect [the roads] to be in better shape when the project is completed than they are currently," added Tipton County's Planning Commissioner Steve Edson.
What about the group of farmers who've agreed to lease a half acre for 30 years for a wind turbine?
Edson said E.ON's application projects a payout "between a half million to three quarters of a million dollars a year" to the farming partners.
Dan Delong signed up.
"The footprints are really small. It's not like they're going to make a big huge disruption in our farming ground," Dan told 13 Investigates.
He won't say exactly what he'll get paid, but apparently enough to make up for his lost crop and any trouble.
"At first we were apprehensive about something like that coming and changing the landscape of our area, but we went and visited some other counties that have had those in and talked to other farmers," he explained.
Steve Pierce talked to other farmers too. But he and his daughters who help farm their land don't think it's worth it.
"You give up possession of it, they can put roads where they want to, they can put the towers wherever they want to. It took a long time for us to get this land cleared," he said.
Pierce and others still question the environmental impact.
We put their questions to Andy Melka, who represents E.ON's North America Chicago office.
"Are these harmful to the environment?" 13 Investigates questioned.
"No. Unequivocally they are not. They do have impacts. No doubt that they have impacts. Birds will fly into them and be killed," said Melka who said studies have proven the impact to be minimal.
"We have 303 turbines in the air producing approximately 501 megawatts of wind power," said Connie Neininger, the Economic Development Director in White County, where the Meadow Lake Wind Farm has been a part of the landscape for years.
Neininger is the "go to" for many county leaders who want to see a viable wind farm operation up close. Tipton County officials toured White County to better understand the dynamics.
Neininger says their project has brought in a billion dollars of capital investment, with minimal impact on bird migration or livestock.
But there's no denying the huge change in the landscape.
"Not everyone is going to like the look," she admitted.
The turbines headed to Tipton and Madison Counties will be much like those in White County, but taller. From the base of the tower to the tip of the blade they will measure 490 feet high.
That's as tall as a 50-story building.
"It's definitely going to change the skyline," said Edson who believes it's one of the best economic development ideas for Tipton County.
But at certain times, the turbines will interrupt the view, even inside homes.
"The 'shadow flicker' as it's called, does happen. However it's a very limited time of the day," Melka conceded.
He's talking about the flicker of shadows homeowners find annoying, when sunlight hits the blade of the turbine and casts a dark line through their windows.
The solution Neininger says is to require bigger setbacks between turbines and homes.
Tipton County will have a setback of 1250 feet. That's little consolation to Steve Pierce.
"I will see them, yeah," he said. "I don't desire that no, they're in my back yard," he added.
13 Investigates asked E.ON's representative if it was moving ahead too fast.
"I don't think so," said Melka who believes wind farms are the best alternative to create clean energy.
"It's the food, it's the energy and one is not taking away from the other," added Neininger, who thinks both the crop farm and wind farm can co-exist, and bring growth to communities.
But for Pierce, the new trend is going to mean unwelcome change to his rural community for good. "It's going to be a lot different. Yes," he said resigned that there's little he can do to stop it.
Construction trailers are expected to move in early next year.
E.ON says the project will create up to 350 jobs through August when the turbines themselves are installed.
A dozen permanent workers will be hired to maintain the turbines on the wind farm, which is expected to cover 10,000 acres.
Tipton County also has a wind energy ordinance in place, detailing certain rules for operation. It includes a de-commissioning agreement that requires E.On to set aside bonds, to pay for the removal of the turbines if the project fails.
Friday, May 24 2013 6:12 AM EDT2013-05-24 10:12:19 GMT
A pedestrian was seriously hurt after being struck by a police officer on the east side of Indianapolis. The accident happened around 9:30 p.m. Thursday near the intersection of 42nd Street and EmersonMore >>
A pedestrian was struck and killed by an IMPD officer in his police car on the east side of Indianapolis Thursday night.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:55 PM EDT2013-05-24 02:55:15 GMT
An act of credit card fraud has been traced back to a downtown Indianapolis restaurant. Some workers upstairs love walking downstairs for a bite at Ike and Jonesy's downtown. But they say the bite isMore >>
The owner of Ike & Jonesy's downtown says he is working to find out how the credit and debit cards of several customers and employees could have been compromised.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 3:04 AM EDT2013-05-24 07:04:34 GMT
Police say there are cars in the water where an interstate bridge collapsed north of Seattle Thursday night. Washington State Patrol told affiliate KING-TV the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit RiverMore >>
Police say there are no fatalities after cars fell into a Washington river after an interstate bridge collapsed north of Seattle Thursday night.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 4:15 AM EDT2013-05-24 08:15:20 GMT
Indianapolis has slipped one spot among the nation's most populous cities to No. 13. The U.S. Census Bureau says new census estimates show the Circle City slipped from No. 12 during the year that endedMore >>
Indianapolis has slipped one spot among the nation's most populous cities to No. 13.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:34 PM EDT2013-05-24 01:34:10 GMT
Indiana State Police want the public's help in looking out for items outdoors possibly linked to the slaying of an 85-year-old retired farmer in rural western Indiana nearly six months ago. DetectivesMore >>
Indiana State Police want the public's help in looking out for items outdoors possibly linked to the slaying of an 85-year-old retired farmer in rural western Indiana nearly six months ago.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 8:54 PM EDT2013-05-24 00:54:25 GMT
A woman suffered only minor injuries after getting stuck under a semi while driving on Interstate 70 Thursday evening. State police say the woman was driving west on I-70 when she lost control for unknownMore >>
A woman suffered a laceration on her arm and other injuries after getting stuck under a semi while driving on Interstate 70 Thursday evening.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 4:20 PM EDT2013-05-23 20:20:10 GMT
One of Indiana's largest health systems says it's cutting an undisclosed number of jobs by June 30 because of increasing economic and competitive pressure on the health care industry. Indianapolis-basedMore >>
One of Indiana's largest health systems says it's cutting an undisclosed number of jobs by June 30 because of increasing economic and competitive pressure on the health care industry.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 3:30 AM EDT2013-05-24 07:30:19 GMT
Shoppers in the U.S. will soon have more information about where their meat comes from after new federal labeling rules went into effect Thursday. The rules require labels on steaks, ribs and other cutsMore >>
Shoppers in the U.S. will soon have more information about where their meat comes from after new federal labeling rules went into effect Thursday.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:17 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:17:03 GMT
The 97th running of the Indianapolis 500 is set for Sunday. But today could be called the official kickoff of race weekend. "Carb Day" at the Motor Speedway signals the final practice for the drivers whoMore >>
Today could be called the official kickoff of race weekend. "Carb Day" at the Motor Speedway signals the final practice for the drivers who will line up for Sunday's Indy 500.More >>