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More warnings of coronavirus scams

The US Food and Drug Administration is warning people of fraudulent coronavirus tests, vaccines, and treatments as the pandemic continues. According to Centers for Disease Control, since the arrival of the Omicron variant, the increase of testing for COVID-19 has become a concern. Scarcity often leads to potential scams for a product that doesn't exist, the compromise of personal identifiable information, or the increase of deceptive advertising.


The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued a warning earlier this year about potential fraud related to the antibody tests. Scammers are selling unapproved COVID-19 antibody tests, which can give inaccurate results. In doing so, they are also collecting personal information, such as Social Security numbers and dates of birth. They may also be stealing heath insurance or Medicare information that can be used in future schemes. 


How the Scam Works 

Robocalls are sent out to consumers directing them to a website that looks like a clinic or medical supply company offering COVID-19 tests. These tests allegedly identify if a person has been infected with coronavirus – even if they’ve? recovered. Some even promise results in 10 minutes. However, to receive a test, a credit card or a form needs to be completed with personal information. 


In some cases, the test involves an easy at-home testing kit. Other times, the tests are allegedly offered through a clinic. But in all versions, the person or website selling the test is short on details. They aren’t willing or able to provide any information about how the test works, where it is sourced, and what laboratory processes it. 


Don’t fall for it! These tests are not US Food and Drug Administration approved and will not give accurate results. In fact, requestors may never even receive an actual test kit. Either way, scammers will have made off with the money and personal information. 


How to Avoid Fake Coronavirus Tests 

  • Want a test? Talk to your doctor. Reach out to your healthcare provider. They can help figure out if the test will be covered by insurance and where to find a legitimate clinic.  If you don't have a primary care physician, check out the official website of your local health department for more information on testing availability. 

  • Research before buying. Scammers put pressure on people to buy or commit without giving them time to do further research. Before agreeing to anything, investigate first. Research any claims the company makes. Start with searching to see they are BBB Accredited, have good reviews, and if there are complaints or scam reports associated with their business name. In addition, review the warnings on FBIFederal Trade CommissionAttorney General's office, and BBB ScamTracker. 

  • Understand all options: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has a detailed guide to testing for COVID-19. Understand the different tests available. 

  • Never share your personal information with strangers.?Only make purchases and share your personal information with people and companies you know and trust. 

  • Check claims of FDA approval. Per the FBI, "Not all COVID-19 antibody tests have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and their efficacy has not been determined." Check the FDA website for a list of approved tests and testing companies. 

BBB recommends if you have been to a pop up Covid testing site and are feeling unsettled about providing personal or financial information, consider the following options:

  • Place a credit freeze on your accounts by contacting the three major credit bureaus. 
  • If possible, file your taxes early to avoid a tax refund theft and alert the IRS.
  • If this does happen alert the insurance company what happened and watch for any unauthorized claims.
  • Monitor all financial accounts for any suspicious charges that do not belong to you and dispute them.
  • Report any suspicious activity to

For More Information 

BBB has additional tips for avoiding scams on and the BBB news feed

If you’ve been the victim of a scam, please report it on the Your report can help others to stay alert and avoid similar scams. 

Rushville man who served in 3 wars receives Sagamore of the Wabash 

Sgt. Maj. Robert Brown's received the Sagamore of the Wabash on Thursday, Jan. 13.


Gov. Eric Holcomb presented Sgt. Maj. Brown with this prestigious award for his patriotism and service to the United States.  State Sen. Jean Leising attended the ceremony.


Sgt. Maj. Brown served in WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War, serving the country for a total of 24 years before retiring from military service.


Sgt. Maj. Brown is a native of Rushville.

Ag Alumni Fish Fry postponed until spring due to COVID-19

The annual Purdue Ag Alumni Fish Fry, originally set for Feb. 4, has been postponed until April 30 due to safety concerns surrounding the current COVID-19 Omicron variant surge in Indiana.


Danica Kirkpatrick, executive director of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association, spoke about the difficult decision made by the event planning team.


“We became concerned that we could not produce this event safely,” Kirkpatrick said. “We will return to the Indiana State Fairgrounds and will have a wonderful celebration this spring.”


Ticket holders who plan to attend the April 30 event will be able to use the tickets they have purchased.


Ticket holders who are no longer able to attend the 2022 Fish Fry should email Kirkpatrick at so that a refund can be processed as soon as possible.


“We will return to the February dates in 2023,” Kirkpatrick said. “Thank you for understanding, stay safe and healthy, and we’ll see you in April.”

Shelbyville mobile pantry cancelled for this Saturday

The difficult decision has been made to cancel the Shelbyville mobile pantry that was scheduled for this Saturday from 10 am-12 pm at the Shelby County Fairgrounds due to the cold weather forecast and freezing temperatures.

Strike Team in Shelby Co. to aid vaccines, testing; State health dept new guidelines to deal with testing demand, availability

An Indiana Department of Health Strike Team is in Shelby County to aid with vaccinations and testing efforts.


The team will be at the Brinson Building at the Shelby County Fairgrounds starting today through Saturday, January 8.  Hours at the site are 12:00 pm - 8:00 pm.  No appointment is necessary.


This is in addition to scheduled appointments for testing and vaccination.


Testing available will be rapid or swab.  Vaccines available include Pfizer (pediatric and adult) and Moderna.  1st, 2nd, 3rd doses and boosters are available.


The strike team comes at a time when the state department of health released new guidelines for testing.


The Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) is making several changes to testing operations due to high demand and a national shortage of rapid test kits.

  • Hours are being extended at the community testing and vaccination clinic outside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays through Jan. 22. The changes are effective today.
  • The clinic, which is being held in the INDYCAR parking lot at 4551 W. 16th St., Indianapolis, across from Gate 2, will accept walk-ins only from noon to 4 p.m.
  • The two-dose Pfizer pediatric and adult vaccines, as well as the two-dose Moderna vaccine, are available.
  • Also effective today, rapid tests at state and local health department testing sites will only be available to individuals aged 18 and younger and symptomatic individuals aged 50 and older. This change is necessary due to the national shortage of rapid antigen tests and is designed to help ensure that students can stay in school and that Hoosiers who are most likely to need a monoclonal antibody are identified within the prescribed window in which they can be administered. Indiana typically uses about 50,000 rapid tests per week but is only guaranteed to receive 11,000 a week at this time.
  • Appointments for rapid tests previously scheduled for today will be honored while testing supplies last, but no appointments for rapid tests will be honored at state or local health department sites going forward except for individuals who fall within the above categories. PCR tests, which are the gold standard, will continue to be offered at all testing sites, with results expected in two to three days.

Click on the testing map at  to find a testing location. Visit to find a vaccination site.

Red Cross: Donate blood (or platelets) now to help patients avoid delays in care

As holiday celebrations continue, concern is rising for the nation’s blood supply, which has now dipped to concerninglevels and could force hospitals to hold off on essential blood and platelet transfusions for patients.


Historically low blood supply levels not seen in more than a decade persist for the American Red Cross, which supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood.The ongoing decline comes at a time of year when donations typically fall. Holiday get-togethers, school breaks and winter weather often lead to lower donor turnout, potentially further compounding the situation.


Potential donors are urged to schedule an appointment now by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).


If there is not an immediate opportunity available to donate, donors are asked to make an appointment in the days and weeks ahead to ensure the Red Cross can replenish and then maintain a sufficient blood supply.


In thanks,all who come to give through Jan. 2 will receive an exclusive Red Cross long-sleeved T-shirt, while supplies last.


Those who come to give blood, platelets or plasma in January will automatically be entered for a chance to win a getaway to Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles. As an extra thank-you from the Red Cross, those who come to donate in January will also be automatically entered to win a home theater package and a $500 e-gift card. Terms apply; visit for more information.


Blood drive safety 

Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and?additional precautions?– including face masks for donors and staff, regardless of vaccination status – have been implemented to help protect the health of all those in attendance. Donors are?asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive. 


Save time during donation

Donors can also save up to 15 minutes at the blood drive by completing a RapidPass®. With RapidPass®, donors complete the pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of donation, from a mobile device or computer. To complete a RapidPass®, follow the instructions at or use the Red Cross Blood Donor App.  


To donate blood, individuals need to bring a blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification that are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also must meet certain height and weight requirements.


Health insights for donors 

At a time when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is screening all blood, platelet and plasma donations from self-identified African American donors for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide Black donors with an additional health insight and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood types more quickly to help patients with sickle cell disease who require trait-negative blood. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for those with sickle cell disease, and blood donations from individuals of the same race, ethnicity and blood type have a unique ability to help patients fighting sickle cell disease.    


Donors can expect to receive sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross Blood Donor App and the online donor portal at  

Street Department crack sealing N. Michigan Rd Wednesday

The Shelbyville Street Department will be crack sealing N. Michigan Rd between N. Riley Hwy and Walser Road.


Lane restrictions will be in place this Wednesday, December 22 from 7:3 0am to 3:30 pm, weather permitting.

Sailor wishes family in New Palestine a happy holiday

Sailors help maintain America’s advantage at sea. This means they do not always get to celebrate holidays with their loved ones. A New Palestine, Indiana, native serving in the United States Navy will celebrate the holidays with his fellow shipmates in Manama, Bahrain, serving with Public Works Department (PWD) Bahrain, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Europe Africa Central (NAVFAC EURAFCENT).


"The guys I work with in the NAVFAC PWD transportation shop have become like family to me," said Constructionman Apprentice Thomas Henry. "Those of us who weren't able to make it home this time will be here spending the holidays together." 


"The holidays have a special place in my heart but family means more," added Henry. "When my brothers and I were young, we would snoop around and try to find out what gifts were ours for Christmas. We were so good they didn't notice that we did this every year. We finally got caught and my parents were not thrilled. They don't know about all the other times so, sorry mom and dad."


Henry wants family back home to know they are missed this holiday season.


"I just want to say that I love and miss you guys a ton," said Henry. "I am sorry I won't be able to make it home for the holidays this year. I hope to see you guys soon and Happy Holidays. I hope all is well and everyone is healthy. I love you all, see you soon."


As a member of the U.S. Navy, Henry, as well as other sailors, know they are a part of a tradition providing unforgettable experiences through leadership development, world affairs and humanitarian assistance.


"Serving in the Navy as a Seabee amazing," said Henry. "It's opened a variety of opportunities for me from a professional perspective, such as operating heavy equipment including, but not limited to, tractor trailers, dozers, graders, scrapers and MTVR's. It has given me the opportunity to grow both personally and professionally and  it's molding me into a leader amongst my peers. I am very proud to have the privilege to wear this uniform. I hope everyone back home is proud of me, as though I am proud to serve my country continuously fighting for my families freedom."


"Appreciate this time with your friends and family," added Henry. "You never know what will happen. Just remember that anything is possible when you have the right people on your side."

Rep. Eberhart invites constituents to complete 2022 issue survey

 State Rep. Sean Eberhart (R-Shelbyville) invites constituents to complete the 2022 issue survey to provide feedback ahead of the legislative session starting Jan. 4.


Constituents in House District 57, which includes Shelby County and portions of Bartholomew and Hancock counties, will receive mailed postcards on how to complete the survey. To get started today, constituents can visit and then click on the red button labeled "Take My Survey."

"Input from our community is valuable, and I always appreciate hearing from those I represent," Eberhart said. "Completing this survey is an easy way for us to stay connected, and I hope everyone can take some time and fill it out."

To complete the survey, constituents must be a resident of House District 57 and submit it by the Dec. 31 deadline. The survey questions are intended to reflect issues that may come before the Legislature and should not be interpreted as a reflection of their legislator's views.

Constituents can determine and confirm who their state representative is online by visiting the Indiana General Assembly's website at, clicking on the "Find Your Legislator" tab and entering their home address.


Eberhart said members of the public can participate in the legislative process by completing the survey, testifying in committee and staying connected. Constituents can visit to watch livestreams of session and committee meetings, view archived meetings, and access meeting calendars and meeting agendas. Hoosiers can also sign up to receive regular email news updates from Eberhart by visiting and entering their email address.


For help completing the survey, constituents can contact Eberhart at or by calling 1-800-382-9841.


The 2022 legislative session begins in January and must conclude by mid-March.


Pole replacement to close Shelbyville's West Jackson Street on Wednesday

A Shelbyville street closure will begin Wednesday, December 8 at 8:00 am.


Duke Energy will close W. Jackson St at the S. Harrison Street intersection for a pole replacement. The closure will be for the duration of the day Wednesday, possibly part of the day Thursday, if the job is not complete. 

Shelby County Drug Free Coalition announces a Request for Applications 2022 Grant Cycle

Each year the Shelby County Drug Free Coalition offers funding opportunities to
agencies seeking to reduce substance abuse in Shelby County. Grants will be
awarded to projects in three areas: Prevention / Education, Treatment / Intervention and Criminal Justice / Law Enforcement.


Proposal requests must be for Shelby County residents / businesses and must address one of the objectives contained in the Coalitions Comprehensive Community Plan.

Grants will be for a one-year period from April 2022 through March 2023.


Applicants are encouraged to submit an application. Applications will be available
on-line Monday December 13, 2021. Applications can be obtained on line at .


Submit an emailed copy to no later than 4:00 p.m. Friday January 14, 2022.


ShelbyCounty Drug Free Coalition Community Fund dollars are comprised of alcohol and other drug offender fees collected by Shelby County.


Any questions about a grant proposal? Email Lori Springer -

New resource available for Hoosiers with questions about COVID-19 treatment

Hoosiers seeking to learn about where to receive the monoclonal antibodies that have been used to prevent progression of COVID-19 disease can contact 211 for information.


Callers to 211 will be connected to Crush COVID, a support center managed by KPMG LLP that provides information about monoclonal antibody treatment on behalf of participating providers. The service will locate the nearest treatment site by ZIP code. Individuals can then contact the infusion center for more information about who can receive the treatment and how to schedule an appointment.


Nearly 100 sites across Indiana are serving as infusion centers.


Monoclonal antibody therapy is the first COVID-19 treatment granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for outpatient use. The therapy has been shown to help high-risk COVID-19 patients avoid hospitalization and recover at home. It is also authorized by the U.S. FDA to prevent COVID-19 following exposure to the virus in some cases.


Hoosiers who are interested in receiving the treatment can call 211 (866-211-9966) to learn more.

Health officials urge Hoosiers to join Great American Smokeout

Today is the Great American Smokeout (GASO), a day to commit to being tobacco free. The American Cancer Society (ACS) designates the third Thursday of every year as the GASO, which encourages smokers to make a pledge to quit using tobacco products for just one day.


“The most important thing Hoosiers can do to improve their health is to quit using any tobacco products,” said State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG. “The Indiana Department of Health supports those who take their first steps toward making a plan to quit for good.” The ACS emphasizes that those who use tobacco don’t have to quit in one day – they just have to start with “day one” of their quit journey. 


“During this year’s Great American Smokeout event, we hope Hoosiers will join us in committing, or recommitting, to living smoke-free lives and encourage their friends and family members to do the same,” Box said. “We know quitting is difficult, but Indiana has resources to help.”


More than 1 million Hoosier adults smoke, and more than 18 percent of Indiana high school students used e-cigarettes in 2018, double the figure from 2016. Smoking can increase the risk of severe respiratory illnesses, such as COVID-19 and influenza. It also contributes to preterm birth and higher infant mortality rates.


Indiana offers free programs to help Hoosiers quit tobacco use, such as Quit Now Indiana. It offers tobacco quit services for all Indiana residents ages 13 and older.


Quit Now Indiana has been working to make quitting easier through new and improved service offerings, including Text2Start, a new and easy way for Hoosiers to connect with a variety of quit services that include text, coaching, and medication support, which provides increased flexibility through a choice of tools to help individuals quit. While supplies last, Hoosiers can receive free medications when enrolling in services.


Hoosiers interested in starting their quit journey can visit, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or text READY to 200-400 for assistance. Youth looking to quit vaping can also text INDIANA to 873373 to access the Live Vape Free text messaging program.

Water valve project moves parking from Shelbyville's Elm Street

Indiana Water will be replacing water valves in Shelbyville in the 800 block of Elm Street. No parking will be in place on both sides of Elm Street starting at 816 Elm to the First Street intersection.


The street will remain open. 


No parking will be in place Tuesday, November 16 & Wednesday, November 17 from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm daily. 

Shelby County Prosecutor's Anti-Drug Calendar Contest

As you likely know, each year we challenge local school kids (grades 5-8) to submit artwork addressing drugs and drug abuse.  Roughly 750 kids participated this year, and, since we began this program 21 year ago, over 13,250 kids have participated in the calendar project over the years. 


The winners are chosen by scanning the entries so that no judges will know who (or which school) submitted each entry.  They are then judged by employees of the Shelby County Prosecutor’s Office, as well as by local narcotics officers. 


The winners each receive gift cards purchased with funds forfeited from local drug dealers. 


We are also having 3,500 calendars featuring the art printed for distribution to local vendors, where the calendars will be free to the public (again – funded by funds taken from local drug dealers). 


According to the CDC, 93,331 Americans died directly from drug overdoses in 2020, and even more died from drug-related issues, such as impaired driving crashes, other accidental injuries attributed to drug impairment, other health problems directly resulting from drug abuse, and suicide (adding up to an estimated 570,000 deaths per year). 


A recent study found that tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drugs cost the United States over 700,000,000,000 per year in costs related to crime, lost work productivity, and health care (which equates to roughly $2,200 for each man, woman, and child in the U.S., and over $79.9 million per hour). 


The vast majority of all robberies, burglaries, and thefts are committed to support drug addictions, and the majority of all murders are drug-related. 


We do a number of things to address these issues in Shelby County.  We take an aggressive approach on the dealers who are slinging dope in Shelby County – working close with our narcotics investigators. 


We were the first Prosecutor’s Office in the state to initiate a Vivitrol Program (to help those addicted to opioids), and we also initiated a treatment program for lower-level offenders that begins in the jail (called the Jail Intervention Program).


The design of the program is to get local kids thinking critically about drugs and the cost of drugs to the individual and to society.  And the submissions show that the kids are getting the message – a message that we hope they will carry with them into adulthood and spread it to the next generation.


The winners of the Anti-Drug Calendar Contest are:


5th Grade:

            1st place – Nola White (Loper Elementary)

            2nd Place – Chloe Tragesser (Morristown Elementary)

            3rd Place – Elise Parker (Hendricks Elementary)


6th Grade:

            1st Place – Calen Faulconer (Southwestern)

            2nd Place – Addison Wooten (Shelbyville Middle School)

            3rd Place – Macey Robbins (Shelbyville Middle School)


7th Grade:

            1st Place – Alyna Castanon (Shelbyville Middle School)

            2nd Place – Bradley Theobald (Morristown)

            3rd Place – Emelyn Mota (Triton)


8th Grade:

            1st Place – Vanessa Garcia Julian (Shelbyville)

            2nd Place – Anna Willis (Southwestern)

            3rd Place – Olivia Lahey (Southwestern)


Cover: Chloe Boggs (5th Grade) (Loper)


Grand Prize:  Addy Marshall (7th Grade) (Shelbyville)


The submissions were great this year, and we had a number of honorable mentions:


Tristan McTarsney

Emmersyn Raley

Mia Robbins

Gabrielle Thomas

Lillian Cowen

Lucille Haacker

Brooklynn Morrell

Hannah Dow

Callie Boger

Mallory McInerny

Alexis Rogers

Abby Rood

Hannah Rouse

Section of Frontage Rd down to single lane for road construction

Traffic note as Shelby County Frontage Road project gets underway.


Beginning Wednesday, November 10, Frontage Road will be under a single lane closure for reconstruction from 850 West to Blue Star RediMix near the Pleasant View Interchange. 


There will be a temporary signal to allow single lane traffic until construction is complete.


It’s anticipated the road will be reopened to full traffic by December 20.

Daylight Saving Time coming to end – Don't forget to Turn and Test

It’s time to fall back as daylight saving time ends this Sunday, Nov. 7 at 2 a.m.


As people turn their clocks back one hour, the American Red Cross reminds everyone to test their smoke alarms.


This weekend is also a good time for everyone to take these lifesaving steps to help prepare households for home fires, the nation’s most frequent disaster:


  • Check smoke alarms and replace batteries if needed. Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire by half. Test smoke alarms once a month. Change the batteries at least once a year if your model requires it. Place smoke alarms on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms, and sleeping areas.


  • Create and practice your home fire escape plan. Fire experts agree that people may have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home before it’s too late. This weekend, create a home fire escape plan with your household and practice it until everyone can escape in less than two minutes. Escape plans should include at least two ways to escape from every room and a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone knows where to meet.

Home Fire Campaign Saving Lives

Each year, the Red Cross responds to more than 62,000 disasters—the vast majority of which are home fires. Every day, seven people die in home fires, and most tragedies occur in homes without working smoke alarms. That’s why the Red Cross launched the Home Fire Campaign with community partners in 2014 to reduce needless deaths and injuries.


So far, the Home Fire Campaign has reached more than 1.7 million people and is credited with saving more than 1,000 lives across the country. The Indiana Region has installed more than 400 smoke alarms and made over 220 homes safer so far this year as part of the national Red Cross Home Fire Campaign. Since the campaign’s inception, volunteers and partners have also:


  • Installed more than 2.2 million free smoke alarms
  • Reached more than 1.6 million children through youth preparedness programs
  • Made more than 948,000 households safer from the threat of home fires


People can visit for free resources and to learn more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire, or contact their local Red Cross to find out about smoke alarm installation events in their community.

I-65 lane closures set for next week

Indiana Department of Transportation contractor MAC Construction plans to resume patching operations next week on I-65 in Shelby and Johnson Counties.


Work began in early October between Exit 80 (S.R. 252) and Exit 90 (S.R. 44).

Daily lane closures will be in place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, Thursday, and Saturday (Nov. 8, 11 & 13). 


All work is expected to be complete by the end of the week, but may be extended if needed due to weather.

Appointments now available for Hoosiers ages 5-11 to receive COVID-19 vaccine

The Indiana Department of Health announced today that COVID-19 vaccination appointments for Hoosiers ages 5-11 can now be scheduled by visiting or calling 211 or (866) 211-9966.


Appointments and pre-registration are strongly recommended to help minimize wait times and ensure that sufficient vaccine is available.


The Pfizer vaccine is the only COVID-19 vaccine authorized for use in individuals under age 18. The pediatric dose is lower than the dosage for ages 12 and older; locations carrying the pediatric dose for children ages 5 to 11 are designated by a pin on the map at


Pediatric vaccine supplies may be limited initially as shipments arrive on a staggered basis, so appointments may be spread out over several days. Additional sites will be added to the map as vaccine arrives.


A parent or guardian must provide consent for the vaccine, and children under 16 must be accompanied to the vaccination appointment by an adult.

DNR offers free admission to veterans, active-duty military, Nov. 11

All veterans and active-duty military personnel, and everyone in their vehicle, will be admitted free to DNR state parks, reservoir properties, state forest recreation areas and state off-road vehicle riding areas on Veterans Day, Thursday, Nov. 11.

This includes admission to Falls of the Ohio State Park’s Interpretive Center.

“We appreciate the sacrifices and service of our veterans and active-duty military and look forward to recognizing them with a day to explore some of the best outdoor places in our state,” said Terry Coleman, director of Indiana State Parks.

Veterans and military personnel should present ID or evidence of military service where entrance gates are in operation. For proof of military status, gate attendants will accept:


—Discharge papers (veteran’s DD Form 214)

—Veteran license plates: Ex-POW, Purple Heart, Disabled Hoosier Veteran, Pearl Harbor Survivor. Veteran license plates also include:

—Air Force Veteran

—Army Veteran

—Coast Guard Veteran

—Marine Corps Veteran

—Merchant Marine Veteran

—Navy Veteran

—U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Award Letter

—Veterans hunting and fishing license

—Documents showing veteran benefits with veteran’s name on document

—Any other certificate or verification letter or form that establishes past or present military service


For general information about state park, reservoir, forest properties, and state off-road vehicle riding areas, see

Blue River Community Foundation winter scholarship application cycle

Blue River Community Foundation’s (BRCF) winter scholarship application cycle is now open on the BRCF website:


The deadline to apply is January 15, 2022.

High school graduating seniors planning to pursue vocational or undergraduate studies, current college students, graduate students, and adults pursuing or finishing a college degree are encouraged to apply.


One unique feature to BRCF’s application process is that applicants complete one application to qualify for all scholarship opportunities for which they are eligible. Specific criteria, requirements, and instructions for applying, as well as a list of scholarships available through the application process, are listed in the BRCF Scholarship Resource Guide for Students located on the Foundation’s website under the Scholarships tab.

Current high school seniors who completed an application during BRCF’s summer application cycle, do not have to reapply during this cycle to be considered for BRCF scholarships for which they are eligible.  However, as directed in the application process, completion of the FAFSA (Federal Application for Free
Student Aid) is required. These students must submit their expected family contribution (EFC) to BRCF prior to the January 15 deadline.

Since 1994, BRCF has invested over $6.7 million in students pursuing post-secondary education. This amount represents over $2.2 million which has been awarded to Shelby County’s 40 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship recipients and is made possible by Lilly Endowment Inc., as well as, $4.5 million awarded to students from BRCF Scholarship Funds. In fact, last spring 185 scholarships totaling $439,000 were awarded to 134 recipients from over 90 active scholarship funds administered by BRCF. These scholarship funds are made possible through the generosity of our donors who recognize the tremendous need for assistance in meeting the costs of higher education.

For more information on BRCF’s scholarship application process, please contact Julie Alvis at 317.392.7955 ext. 102 or

First Merchants Corporation announces Third Quarter 2021 earnings per ahare

First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ - FRME) has reported third quarter 2021 net income of $52.8 million compared to $36.2 million during the same period in 2020, an increase of 45.7 percent. Earnings per share for the period totaled $.98 per share compared to the third quarter of 2020 result of $.67 per share. Year-to-date net income totaled $157.8 million compared to $103.5 million during the nine months ended September 30, 2020, an increase of 52.5 percent. Year-to-date earnings per share totaled $2.92 compared to $1.91 during the same period in 2020.


Total assets equaled $15.1 billion as of September 30, 2021 and loans totaled $9.0 billion. The Corporation experienced organic loan growth of $503.9 million, or 6.0 percent during the last twelve months, offset by the forgiveness of Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) loans which accounted for a decline of $703.3 million. As a result, the loan portfolio decreased by $199.5 million, or 2.2 percent, during that period. Organic loan growth, on an annualized basis, was 5.8 percent in the third quarter 2021. Investments increased $1.5 billion, or 51.6 percent, during the last twelve months and now total $4.4 billion. Total deposits equaled $12.3 billion as of quarter-end and increased by $1.4 billion, or 13.2 percent, from the same period in 2020.


The Corporation’s Allowance for Credit Losses – Loans totaled $200.0 million as of quarter-end, or 2.21 percent of total loans. Net recoveries for the quarter totaled $0.2 million and no provision expense was recorded. Provision expense taken during the three and nine months ended September 30, 2020 of $12.5 million and $54.2 million, respectively, reflected our view of increased credit risk related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Non-accrual loans totaled $51.5 million as of quarter-end.


Mark Hardwick, Chief Executive Officer, stated, “We are having a record year powered by strong balance sheet growth and high levels of profitability. We remain optimistic about the remainder of 2021 and our ability to deliver high levels of performance in 2022.”


Net-interest income for the quarter totaled $104.7 million, an increase of $11.8 million from the third quarter of 2020, or 12.7 percent. Net interest margin, on a tax equivalent basis, totaling 3.20 percent, increased by 5 basis points compared to the third quarter of 2020. Yields on earning assets for the third quarter totaled 3.46 percent and cost of supporting liabilities totaled 26 basis points. Fair value accretion contributed less to margin as it accounted for 4 basis points in the third quarter of 2021, compared to 10 basis points in the third quarter of 2020. PPP loans contributed 17 basis points to margin during the third quarter of 2021 but subtracted 7 basis points from margin in the same quarter of 2020.


Non-interest income totaled $28.5 million for the quarter, a $2.3 million increase over the third quarter of 2020. Increases in service charges on deposit accounts, fiduciary and wealth management fees and earnings on cash surrender value of life insurance were somewhat offset by a decline in gains on the sale of mortgage loans. Non-interest expense totaled $71.4 million for the quarter compared to $64.7 million in the third quarter of 2020, an increase primarily due to higher salaries and employee benefits.


The loan to deposit ratio now totals 73.3 percent and the loan to asset ratio totals 60.1 percent. As of September 30, 2021, the Corporation’s total risk-based capital ratio equaled 14.02 percent, the common equity tier 1 capital ratio equaled 11.75 percent, and the tangible common equity ratio totaled 8.94 percent. These ratios continue to reflect the Corporation’s strong liquidity and capital positions.