Those of you who are looking at getting a flu shot this year will get a chance to do so starting this week.

Dubois County health officials have announced that pediatric seasonal flu vaccine clinics will open for the season tomorrow morning at 8 am. They will be held daily from 8 to 11 am and then again from 1 til 3 pm.

Walk-ins are accepted for these clinics and no appointment is necessary. All insurance cards will need to be presented at the time of service. Hoosier Healthwise and Medicare Part B will also be accepted as forms of payment. The health department says there are no out of pocket costs for the flu vaccine associated with most health insurance policies.

Now the health department also says adult seasonal flu vaccine is still available daily. County health officials say the one best way to prevent the flu is to get the flu vaccine each fall.

The health department recommends that everyone age 6 months and older should be vaccinated.

A pair of Jasper housing projects are under consideration for county wide funding.

Last night, Pete Schwiegeraht of Miller-Valentine told the Dubois County Council of the need for extra funding on a pair of new investments. These are Phase 2 of the JOFCO workforce housing effort (which would add up to 40 additional units) and planned senior housing to be built in the former Jasper Wood Products building. Both projects were announced last week at the Jasper City Council’s regular monthly meeting.

Schwiegeraht asked the council for $200,000 in all, $100,000 to help towards each of the projects. He says that’s ultimately a small price to pay for what will likely be millions of dollars in local investment:

The council chose to table the issue until October, citing concerns over the area being part of Jasper’s recently created TIF district. TIF monies from that district will go to the city of Jasper rather than to the county.

In other business, the council voted to adopt the 2016 budget. The overall spending plan is right in line with last year’s, with a general fund of around $8 million. The county is still struggling with budget shortfalls as they had to make $1.7 million in cuts to overcome a $1.6 million deficit.

County Council president Greg Kendall says the county will have to put more emphasis on budgeting for needs and not wants to get out of the hole:

This is the 2nd year in a row for the county having to deal with a budget shortfall. Last year, the deficit came in at $1.3 million.

A member of the Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand will make her final profession of vows later this month.

Sister Doris Schepers will be making her perpetual monastic profession coming up on Saturday, October 17th. The ceremony gets underway at 1 o’clock that afternoon at the Monastery of Immaculate Conception in Ferdinand. Schepers Doris

Bishop Charles C. Thompson of the Catholic Diocese of Evansville will be presiding over the special Mass. The public is invited to attend the Mass and a reception following the ceremony.

The 53-year-old Sister Doris is a native of Ferdinand. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Indiana University Southeast in education, with a minor in math. She received her associate of applied science degree in computer programming from Ivy Tech Community College. She also has an associate of specialized business degree in computer science from Sullivan Junior College of Business.

Sr. Doris entered the monastery back in 2006. Prior to that, she worked as a systems administrator for former US Congressman Lee Hamilton and Congressman Baron Hill. She also served as youth minister for St. Anthony Parish in Clarksville, Indiana.

Sr. Doris made her first monastic profession back in 2009. She is currently in her 5th year of teaching religion at St. Patrick School in Louisville.

A pair of local veterans are set to receive statewide honors this fall.

Yesterday, the Indiana Military Veterans Hall of Fame announced its 2nd induction class. John Topper of Santa Claus will be among those inducted in the valorous military service category. Meanwhile, Edgar Whitcomb of Cannelton will be inducted in the combined military and community service category. They are part of an overall class of 18 military veterans with Indiana ties being honored.

Now nominations for this year’s class were opened up back in June. Nearly 50 applications in all were turned in.

This year’s induction ceremony will be held on Friday, November 13th at the Renaissance in Carmel, Indiana. For more information, you can go online to

A Terre Haute woman lost her life in a crash in rural Daviess County over the weekend.

At around 3:25 yesterday afternoon, Daviess County Sheriff’s deputies were called to State Road 257 in the 7 curves area near I-69 on a reported head-on collision. Sheriff’s deputies say a Dodge Caravan driven by Terry Baker of Washington was going northbound on State Road 257 at the same time as a Honda Pilot driven by Ellen Shafer of Terre Haute was going southbound on the highway. Daviess County deputies say Baker’s van went left of center for an unknown reason and collided head-on with Shafer’s vehicle. 7 Curves Crash

Shafer was pronounced dead at the scene by the Daviess County Coroner’s Office.Baker was airlifted to Deaconness Hospital in Evansville for treatment. Meanwhile, Shafer’s husband Ronald Shafer, was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital in Vincennes for treatment along with a passenger in Baker’s vehicle (Michael Thompson of Washington).

Daviess County Sheriff’s deputies were assisted by the Washington, Harrison and Southeast Volunteer Fire Departments along with Southwest Medical, an AirEvac Lifeteam, the Daviess County Coroner’s Office and Indiana Conservation Officers.

Last week was momentous for the ‘Friends of Otwell Elementary’ group..and its leader is hoping for even greater things as time goes on.

Bob Rhodes has been leading the ‘Friends of Otwell’ group for the last month or so. During that time, the group has become more organized, including this past week’s election of a Board of Directors. That board consists of 7 members including Rhodes, who is continuing as chairman. The other 6 are Mike Houtsch, Josh Byrd, Travis Troutman, David Jochim, Hannah Hill and Elizabeth Luff. Luff, who is an attorney in Velpen, will also help with legal concerns that the group may have.

Rhodes says with new leadership also comes a slight change in focus:

Now Rhodes stated last week that the charter document is nearing its completion. He says the group is still working its way through a first draft of the charter, thus its only a matter of time before it’s done.

Of course, the group will soon vote on a mission statement and put together letters of endorsement to help the charter school effort. Rhodes, who has served in the military and taught for 10 years at Washington Catholic High School, also discussed the strengths of a small school to help people come up with what to write in their letter of recommendation should they put one together.

Rhodes says saving Otwell Elementary would be a victory for small schools, many of which he says impact students as much or even more than the larger schools:

Now Otwell Elementary is using the recent efforts of Duggar Union, which successfully reopened this school year as a charter school, as inspiration for their work.

The next ‘Friends of Otwell Elementary’ group meeting is set for next Tuesday, October 6th.

Local residents interested in learning more about Indiana’s tax amnesty program for this year will get the chance to do so this upcoming week.

The Indiana Department of Revenue is partnering with the Jasper Kiwanis Club to conduct a free Tax Amnesty 2015 Seminar this upcoming Tuesday, September 29th. The seminar will go from noon to 1 pm at the Jasper VFW Post along North Newton Street.

Now Tax Amnesty 2015 is a limited-time opportunity for both individuals and businesses to pay past-due taxes free of penalty, interest and collection fees. All tax types managed by the Indiana Department of Revenue for periods ending prior to Jan. 1, 2013, are eligible for the program.

The free seminar will provide an overview of Tax Amnesty 2015, including:

Eligibility requirements;
Participation benefits;
Tax warrant expungement;
Payment plan options; and
Additional taxpayer resources.

Additionally, attendees will have an opportunity to ask questions of an experienced department representative.

District 48 senator Mark Messmer is among those who supported the tax amnesty, which was put in place this past legislative session to raise money for the state’s new Regional Cities initiative along with funding to support Amtrak’s Hoosier State rail passenger service between Indianapolis and Chicago.

Messmer says the tax amnesty is a great opportunity to get out from under your tax burden:

For a complete list of scheduled Tax Amnesty 2015 seminars, go to