Bloomington has received a federal designation.
Jim Inman Photo: canva.com
Exodus Refugee, a resettlement organization that assists refugees, has announced Bloomington was approved as a federally-authorized resettlement site. The decision was made by the US State Department.
The organization assists refugees in a number of areas, according to board member Elizabeth Cullen Dunn. Services include rental assistance, job searches, English language lessons and psychological services.
The program planned to accept 300 refugees during its first year, but that number could increase due to Afghan resettlement camps.
Camp Atterbury, east of Monroe County, is one of the resettlement camps.
According to their website, Exodus Refugee began in 1981 to serve the legal needs of immigrants and Cuban refugees. Over their 40-year history the organization has assisted thousands of refugees from more than 50 countries and helped them establish new lives in Indiana.
The Monroe County Council approved the purchase of two properties this week, despite concerns about PCB contamination in the area.
The properties, located north of the Highway 46 and I-69 intersection, were purchased for $370,000.
The county has been looking in recent years for property to expand community experiences, including trails, bikeways, walking paths and parks.
For those who have been in Bloomington for some time, PCBs have been a concern – especially in the west side area where the former Westinghouse location sat. PCBs are chemicals linked to causing cancer, and have been found in various local areas, including quarries.
Last month the US Environmental Protection Agency removed three local areas from their priority list, stating the cleanup work was now complete.
The three sites are the former Bennett Stone Quarry, the Lemon Lane Landfill and Neal’s Landfill.
Indiana University’s 2021 Annual Security and Fire Safety report showed that some activities decreased, but some rose.
The report, released last Friday, showed drug violations dropped nearly 50 percent from 2019 to 2020. Liquor violations decreased significantly, from 145 to 64 incidents.
However, reported rapes on campus went from 19 in 2019 to 22 in 2020.
The IU Police Department has reported 13 rapes during the current school year.