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School districts join IRS suit

The state attorney general’s office says two dozen more school districts have joined a lawsuit filed by the state of Indiana and 15 school districts against the U.S. Internal Revenue Service challenging rules it imposed to implement the federal health care overhaul.

The lawsuit filed in October in U.S. District Court in Indianapolis contends the health care law does not allow financial penalties in states that didn’t create online marketplaces where people can buy insurance. Such states instead ceded that task to the federal government.

Father gets 30 years for exploiting boy

An Australian man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to sexually exploit a child involving a scheme where he and his partner allowed at least eight others to have sex with their adopted son for money.

The Indianapolis Star reported the 36-year-old man was sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker. Court documents say the boy was between the ages of 2 and 6 when at least eight men had sex with him.

Council member to plead to tax charge

A Gary City Council member has agreed to plead guilty to failing to file tax returns in 2008 and 2009.

A plea agreement filed Monday shows that Ronier Scott, 42, of Gary has agreed to plead guilty to the charges and faces up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine on each count. U.S. Attorney David Capp announced the filing of the criminal information Monday.

Old school to again house manufacturer

An old elementary school building in southern Indiana’s Brown County will soon have a new industrial occupant.

The old school in the community of Helmsburg had for 20 years housed a sock factory until a 2011 fire damaged one of the auxiliary buildings at the site. That caused the company For Bare Feet to move its 160 workers to a factory in Martinsville.

The Herald-Times reported that Beamery Group of Whitestown has purchased the school from Brown County for $417,000. That company makes natural timber frames and other construction materials.

DNR offers advice on Christmas trees

People who follow the Indiana Department of Natural Resources through Facebook will be able to get some advice about selecting a Christmas tree and keeping it fresh throughout the holidays from forest education director Sam Carman.

The DNR says Carman will be available via Facebook 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Friday to answer questions.

The Talk to a DNR Expert series hosts DNR employees who are knowledgeable about various topics to answer questions from the public. Talks are planned in January for snowmobiling and prescribed burns.