City Council OKs change to TIF District

By Joseph Slacian

The Wabash City Council unanimously approved a resolution amending the city’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district in the downtown area Feb. 9.

The move paves the way to help collect funding to be used toward its Stellar Community Grant initiative.

According to Richard Starkey, an attorney for Barnes & Thornburgh in Indianapolis, the measure adds “parcels to the plan impacted by the Stellar project so we can do all the projects promised in the Stellar application.”

Posted on 2015 Feb 19
Wabash County Transit provided nearly 35,000 rides in ‘14

By Joseph Slacian

Wabash County Transit (WCT) provided 34,748 rides to 1,726 individuals in 2014, according to figures provided The Paper of Wabash County by Beverly Ferry, Chief Executive Officer of Living Well in Wabash County.

The number of riders, she said, was down less than 100 from 2013. However, the total number of rides was down by 7,000.

She attributed the drop in ridership to two things. The harsh winter weather in January and February prevented the WCT vehicles from operating several days in early 2014.

Posted on 2015 Feb 19
Chief seeks to raise funds for fire safety trailer

By Joseph Slacian

Wabash Fire Chief Bob Mullett is seeking community support to purchase a fire safety trailer for use by the various fire departments around Wabash County.

Posted on 2015 Feb 11
Jones retires after 49 years of service to LaFontaine

In LaFontaine, since 1966, Denny Jones has acted as the town's "go-to guy." Among many services, he has cared for the town as the town marshal, fire chief, and assisted with snowplowing. Photo by Harold Chatlosh

By Emma Rausch

LaFontaine Public Works Utility Superintendent Denny Jones, 67, is retiring after 49 years of town service, but he really wishes he wasn’t being recognized for it.

“I’m kind of a low-key, get it done type. I don’t need the hoopla,” Jones said.

However, Jones is being celebrated for more than just his service as a public works officer. Since 1966, Jones has served LaFontaine as a Synder Tire & Battery break mechanic, town deputy, town marshal, volunteer firefighter and fire chief, utility superintendent, and snowplow operator.

Posted on 2015 Feb 10
‘American Sniper’ has ties to Wabash County - Local man is related to one of SEALs featured in book, film

Hal Job looks over some papers about his second cousin, Navy SEAL SO2 Ryan Curtis Job. SO2 Job is featured prominently in the movie and book “American Sniper.” Photo by Joseph Slacian

By Joseph Slacian

Wabash resident Hal Job knew his second cousin was a member of the U.S. Navy’s SEAL Team Three. He didn’t realize, until just recently, just how extraordinary his cousin, Second Warfare Operator 2nd Class (SO2) Ryan Curtis Job was.

As a member of SEAL Team Three, SO2 Job provided cover for fellow SEAL Chris Kyle on a variety of missions in Iraq. Kyle, the deadliest marksman in U.S. military history, is the subject of the book and Academy Award-nominated movie “America Sniper.” SO2 Job is featured prominently in both the book and movie.

Hal Job sits at a small, round table at Modoc’s Market, a variety of papers scattered in front of him. The papers all contain information about his cousin, some of which he knew, some of which he learned researching his relative.

“He got his pilot’s license when he was 17,” the Wabash resident told The Paper of Wabash County. “His grandfather, my uncle, retired from the Air Force as a lieutenant colonel. 

“Ryan’s father went into the Navy to be a Navy SEAL, but he didn’t make it as a Navy SEAL. What made Ryan change from flying to becoming a Navy SEAL, I don’t know, but he went into the Navy SEALs and he made it.

“He was just an extraordinarily focused individual who wanted to serve his country. He comes from a family of people who have served.

“I didn’t realize the part that he played until I saw the movie and read the book.”

Posted on 2015 Feb 10
Tourism is county’s 5th largest industry

By Joseph Slacian

Tourism is Wabash County’s fifth largest industry, according to a new study conducted by Rockport Analytics.

The results of the study, recently announced by the Visit Wabash County, the county’s convention and visitors bureau, was part of a joint endeavor between the group and the Economic Development Group of Wabash County (EDG). It was made possible by a co-op program organized by the Indiana Office of Tourism and Development.

This is the first study ever conducted specifically for Wabash County.

Posted on 2015 Feb 10
County Council approves tax abatement for Midwest Eye

Work has started on the new optical lens laboratory to be opened by Midwest Eye Consultants and Vision Properties, LLC, on Old U.S. 24. Photo by Harold Chatlosh

By Emma Rausch

In a 6-1 vote on Monday Jan. 26, the Wabash County Council approved a resolution for tax abatement for Midwest Eye Consultants and Vision Properties, LLC.

The firm plans to open a $2.39 million lens optical lab at the site for the former Cashway Lumber on Old U.S. 24 in Wabash. The lab is expected to create 31 jobs by 2018.

In October 2014, Indiana Economic Development Corporation had offered Midwest Eye Consultants up to $130,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $50,000 in training grants for a new lens coating Wabash-based laboratory, according an Area Development press release.

The credits are “performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, [Midwest Eye Consultants] is not eligible to claim incentives,” according to the press release.

Posted on 2015 Feb 10
Injunction sought to stop Elmwood Drive demolition

By Joseph Slacian

An injunction to stop the City of Wabash from demolishing a home at 7 Elmwood Drive has been filed with Wabash Superior Court.

The Wabash Board of Public Works and Safety learned about the injunction, filed by the estate of the late owner, Jo Jinks Dietzer, at its Feb. 4 meeting from City Building Commissioner John Stephens.

The estate and its representative Louise Dietzer Young, Dietzer’s daughter, received notification following the board’s Jan. 21 meeting that demolition could begin in 10 days.

Posted on 2015 Feb 10

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