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July 4, 2017 • Headline News
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Attention all clubs and organizations...deadline July 18
Be a part of the 2017-18 Ripley County Guide!

Ripley Publishing Company is currently updating information for the 2017-2018 Ripley County Guide. Over 13,000 copies will be distributed throughout the county. To be included in the guide or to update information that was published in last year’s guide please email the following information by July 18, 2017 to Linda Chandler at
Please include the following information:
• Organization Name
• Contact Name and Phone Number
• Meeting Day and Time
• Meeting Location


Some new laws now in effect

July 1 was the date for several new laws to be in effect after the Indiana General Assembly session wrapped up for another year.
New laws in Indiana
Gas taxes
Gas tax increase Hoosiers will see the results of the session at the gas pumps due to a 10-cent gas tax increase. Also, BMV fees have increased. Registrations will now include a $15 transportation infrastructure improvement fee. Representative Randy Frye talked about this bill and noted that the increase will help Indiana fix and maintain roadways that are long overdue for repairs. Those who own electric vehicles will pay a $150 supplemental registration fee and hybrid vehicle owners will need an extra $50 for registration.

Helmets needed

All minors riding an ATV must wear a DOT (Department of Transportation) approved helmet. A sticker denoting the helmet is DOT approved is usually found on the helmet. The helmet must be worn on private property as well as public places. While some people resist the private property part, officers say they’re not just looking to write tickets. They are hoping the law will save lives. According to information from the Department of Natural Resources, 29 minors have died on ATVs and more than 450 have been injured over the past six years. Some are still dealing with the traumatic brain injuries caused from these accidents. If minors are caught without a helmet and ticket is written, the rider or the vehicle owner could get a $500 ticket.

Carrying a handgun
Now Hoosiers can carry a handgun without a license by adhering to some rules. The weapon can be carried in a vehicle as long as it is unloaded and out of reach. Officials did clarify that out of reach is not in the glove box, but in the trunk of the car.

Background checks

Public and private school employees will now be required to have more extensive background checks. This could result in an additional 30,000 investigations annually. The bill requires current employees to also undergo the expanded background check every five years. Criminal background checks will also be required for home health care workers. The current law only requires a limited criminal background check unless certain circumstances are red flagged. The agency will be required to get a national criminal history background check or an expanded criminal history check.

Child abuse convictions
Now an electronic registry of those convicted of child abuse will be enforced. This registry will give information about the individual convicted of the crime. This is being established by the Division of State Court Administration and will be like the sex offender registry.

Stolen Valor law
Anyone who falsely claims to be a military veteran to qualify for a discount or benefit can be fined $5,000. They could also be put in jail for one year.

These are just a few of the new laws that could affect Hoosiers as they go about their daily living. Out of the 841 proposed bills, there were over 200 bills passed in the recent session.

Social Security and Medicare are lasting sources of independence

By Charo Boyd

In July, communities everywhere celebrate our nation’s independence with fireworks, family, and friends. A strong community also creates independence as we help each other recognize our full potential.

Social Security AdministrationSocial Security has been helping people maintain a higher quality of life and a level of independence for over 80 years. And Medicare has been doing the same for over five decades. Most people first become eligible for Medicare at age 65. For many older Americans, this is their primary health insurance and without it, they might not enjoy an independent lifestyle. Medicare can be a little confusing to newcomers so we’ve broken it down into segments. The four parts of Medicare are as easy as A, B, C, and D.

Part A - Hospital Insurance
Part A (Hospital Insurance) helps cover inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing care, hospice care, and home health care. Most people get Medicare Part A premium-free since it is earned by working and paying Social Security taxes.

Part B - Medical Insurance
Part B (Medical Insurance) helps cover services from doctors and other outpatient health care providers, outpatient care, home health care, durable medical equipment, and some preventive services. Most people pay a monthly premium for Part B. Some high-income individuals pay more than the standard premium. If you don’t enroll in Medicare Part B during your initial enrollment period and then decide to do so later, your coverage may be delayed and you may have to pay a higher monthly premium for as long as you have Part B.

Part C - Medicare Advantage
Part C (Medicare Advantage) allows you to choose to receive all of your health care services through a provider organization. This plan includes all benefits and services covered under Part A and Part B, usually includes Medicare prescription drug coverage, and may include extra benefits and services at an extra cost. You must have Part A and Part B to enroll in Part C. Monthly premiums vary depending on the state where you live, private insurer, and whether you select a health maintenance organization or a preferred provider organization.

Part D - Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage
Part D (Medicare prescription drug coverage) helps cover the cost of prescription drugs. Many people pay a premium for Part D. However, people with low income and resources may qualify for Extra Help to pay the premium and deductible. If you don’t enroll in a Medicare drug plan when you’re first eligible, you may pay a late enrollment penalty if you join a plan later. You will have to pay this penalty for as long as you have Medicare prescription drug coverage. To see if you qualify for extra help visit

Will you be age 65 soon? Even if you decide not to retire, you should apply for Medicare. You can apply in less than 10 minutes using our online Medicare application. Visit to learn more about applying for Medicare.

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