Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

December 4, 2012

IDOC grant amendment gives additional funding to work release

— GOSHEN — Up to 20 offenders will be funded through a grant agreement amendment, approved by the Elkhart County Commissioners at Monday’s meeting.

Community Corrections Executive Director Tara Boocher-Whaley said the Indiana Department of Corrections grant agreement, which was originally approved July 2012, will pay $25 a day per offender.

“We will house offenders eligible for work release,” Boocher-Whaley said.

Commissioner Terry Rodino asked if these offenders were from Elkhart County or coming from other locations. Boocher-Whaley said they would all be from Elkhart County.

Retirement for police dog

The commissioners also approved the retirement of police dog Tuko.

Tuko has served his time alongside officer Tim Lechlitner, and he can no longer perform his duties because of his age, according to Elkhart County Sheriff Brad Rogers.

“This is something we’ve done in the past, when the dogs have gotten old enough,” Rogers said. “We let the handler take possession of the dog.”

Tuko will live out his days with Lechlitner, according to Rogers. Rogers also said he believes Tuko’s replacement is already working.

ADA compliance approved

The commissioners also approved a resolution to adopt an American with Disabilities Transition Plan for public pedestrian pathways.

Elkhart County Highway Department Public Engineer Katie Niblock explained that the ADA transition plan is a federal requirement for all local governments.

“This is going to be an ongoing thing,” Niblock said. “With new construction projects, everything has to be ADA compliant. This plan states that we will eventually update everything. We have to update the plan every three years.”

The total cost of the updates are unknown, according to Niblock.

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Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

I think it’s a good idea to feed all the students free of charge
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