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Editorials

  • Huntertown poisons the well
    For more than four years, Eel River Township residents, homeowners, landowners and taxpayers have defended our community from the control tactics Huntertown has tried to force upon us.
  • Legislative map
    Indiana lawmakers have been eager to read messages into this month’s elections results, but there’s no need to do so. The annual Hoosier survey spells out precisely what residents are thinking: “We need jobs.
  • Obama acts where House fears to tread
    Republicans and Democrats should be equally wary of the arbitrary exercise of presidential power.
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Yearly scorecard: 2012

Smith
Hall
Mourdock
Martone
Zoeller
Morris
Rush
File photos

Winners

Fort Wayne Community Schools: Scaled-back building renovation plan wins a decisive vote in May referendum, allowing for long-needed improvements at dozens of schools, and district minimizes enrollment losses to move ahead of Indianapolis as the state’s largest school district.

The Harrison: Final piece of Parkview Field development falls into place with construction of office/residential building overlooking the ballpark.

Democratic State Convention: Party chooses Fort Wayne for its first statewide meeting outside Indianapolis, giving the Summit City rave reviews for its hospitality.

Bishop Luers football: In spite of an unsettling start to its season, team brings home another Class 2A state championship and senior Jaylon Smith rakes in the honors, including 2012 Indiana Mr. Football.

Growth: New state-of-the-art campus of Parkview Hospital opens along with part of an accompanying interchange at I-69 and Union Chapel Road. Speaking of I-69 …

Roads: The first major leg of the I-69 expansion in southwestern Indiana opens, followed by Indiana’s portion of the U.S. 24 Fort-to-Port project and the next-to-last leg of the Hoosier Heartland Corridor along Indiana 25 from Lafayette to Delphi. Plus the long-awaited Maplecrest Road extension connecting Fort Wayne and New Haven finally opens.

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Bridge: Downtown gateway is dedicated and quickly becomes a city landmark with its ever-changing light show.

City Council: Newcomers Geoff Paddock and Russ Jehl, along with the return after four years of John Crawford, make for civilized and productive deliberations.

Greg Zoeller: Indiana attorney general intervenes after state appeals court blocks publication of a transcript of a state child abuse hotline call. The court’s prior restraint was clearly unconstitutional.

Losers

Purdue University trustees: The board forces IPFW Chancellor Michael Wartell to follow mandatory retirement policy at age 65 – then hires a 64-year-old to replace him. The board also skirts open meetings law to interview candidates for Purdue president – then hires the man who appointed or reappointed each of the trustees.

Rep. Bob Morris: Fort Wayne lawmaker defends unfounded claims against Girl Scouts, drawing ridicule from late-night comics and even his own House speaker.

Paul Moss, Ken Fries: County Councilman Moss’ middle-of-the-night call to Sheriff Fries after being stopped by a county police officer – who canceled plans for a Breathalyzer after speaking to the sheriff – sets off criticism and an ethics probe that ultimately fell flat.

Huntertown Town Council: State regulators’ rejection of proposed sewer plan just one of many problems the tone-deaf town council experiences.

Richard Mourdock: Tea party state treasurer costs the GOP its long-held U.S. Senate seat with “no compromise” stand and statement that if a woman becomes pregnant from being raped, it was God’s intent.

DCS: Problems with the Department of Child Services are documented and its director, James Payne, resigns after a newspaper unveils his conflict of interest involving the agency and one of his relatives.

Tossups

Weather: Unusually warm winter leads into exceptionally sweltering summer that hit farms with a drought and included a vicious wind storm (above) that knocked out power to many city residents – some for several days.

Statewide smoking ban: All of Indiana joins Fort Wayne and other progressive locales in sensible regulation of tobacco, but ban is weakened by exemptions.

Milestones

Right to work: Controversial legislation sparks huge Statehouse protests before it is approved and enacted by Republican majorities.

Indiana Supreme Court: In his third appointment, Gov. Mitch Daniels finally gets it right, adding Lafayette judge Loretta Rush to the all-male court. Rush took the oath of office and participated in a robing ceremony on Friday.

Manchester University: To mark its expanding academic offerings, Manchester College becomes a university and its new College of Pharmacy welcomes it first class of nearly 65 at a new Fort Wayne building.

Civic leaders: Among the well-known city residents who died in 2012 were Patty Martone, 81, an educator and community volunteer who was a role model and mentor to many; Jack Dunifon, 90, a local businessman and longtime Republican leader who served on the City Council, Indiana House, county commissioners and County Council; and Dede Hall, 62, a former city councilwoman and a member of the Hall restaurant family.

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