Communities Set Trick-Or-Treating Times For This Weekend

Halloween is this Saturday and the communities of Crothersville Austin and Scottsburg have established times for trick or treating for area youngsters.
The City of Austin & Scottsburg’s trick-or-treat night will be Friday, October 30, from 6 to 8 p.m.
The town of Crothersville will hold trick or treat on Saturday, Oct. 31, from 6-8 p.m.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, community leaders ask that the participants follow health department trick-or-treating guidelines.
•Limit visits to only friends and family.
•Wear facemasks in addition to the Halloween version and practice social distancing.
•Those who are high risk due to age or medical conditions should not participate.
•Sanitize frequently touched surfaces often.
•Wash your hands or use hand sanitizers between visitors.
To learn what activities are considered low, moderate or high risk during Halloween visit the CDC’s website at

27 Properties Sell At Jackson County Tax Sale For Over $734,000

When the Jackson County delinquent property tax sale list was first advertised in September there were 141 parcels with back taxes owed. By the time of the tax sale last Thursday, Oct. 22, began at the courthouse, that list had been pared down to 29 after property owners paid taxes owed prior to the sale.
Those 29 parcels owed a total of $95,138.95 in unpaid property taxes and fees. There were 31 registered bidders with nine successful bidders who paid a total of $734,451.91 for 27 parcels on which $61,330.60 was owed.
“The county is only interested in the taxes owed,” said Jackson County Treasurer Roger Hurt. “The amount paid over the taxes owed will go into a surplus tax sale fund.”
He explained that those properties sold on Thursday can be redeemed by their owners by paying the taxes plus 10% for up to the next six months; after that the interest increases to 15%. Upon redemption, the surplus paid by the successful bidder will be returned to that bidder.
Two properties, one in Brownstown and one in Crothersville, failed to obtain the minimum bid of taxes owed which totaled $33,808.35.
Successful bidders included:
•Town of Crothersville which purchased two properties.
•Terry D. Cockerham of Brownstown who purchased one property.
•Clearleaf Short Alternative Fund LP of Louisville, KY which purchased three properties.
•Savvy IN LLC of Memphis Tennessee which purchased eight properties.
•M&M Investment Group LLC of Cortland, IN which purchased four properties.
•Shammah Investments LLC of Connersville which purchased four properties.
•Ricci D. & Alisa K. Sweazy who purchased one property.
•Clearspring Kingdon Amanda Cooper of Greenwood which purchased three properties.
•Andrew Royalty of Columbus who purchased one property.
The following parcels sold at tax sale. Listed is the property owner, address, taxes owed; buyer and amount paid.
Driftwood Township
DSV SPV1 LLC, 3340 W. Commerce St., Vallonia, $2,555.07; Savvy IN LLC, $21,000.
Jackson Township
Carken Properties contract to James Kincer, 614 W. 8th St., Seymour, $2,049.33; Clearleaf Short Alternative Fund, $100,000.
William Gregory & Michelle Dawn Andrews, 307 N. Lynn St., Seymour, $3,666.52; Clearleaf Short Alternative Fund, $66,000.
Rafael Lopez, 1080 Brittney Blvd., Seymour, $1,334.09; M&M Investment Group, $56,000.
Donna Bensheimer, 415 S. O’Brien St., Seymour, $3,554.37; M&M Investment Group, $44,000.
Eric Childress, 620 Berkshire Dr., Seymour, $1,649.49; Savvy IN LLC, $75,000.
Grover & Sondra Stacey, 122 W. 2nd St., Seymour, $9,269.86; Savvy IN LLC, $52,000.
Robert E. & Donna L. Boling, 322 E. Brown St., Seymour, $2,277.27; Shammah Investments LLC, $18,000.
Owen Township
Jane Vaniman, Beulah M. Sparks, Eva A. Devine, Mary K. Huerta, Marilyn R. Newby, Carolyn S. Short, Rhea Dawn Fowler, Renee D. Kasting, 5 acres in the 5000 block of W 300 N, Brownstown, $174.10; Terry D. Cockerham, $5,500.
Nathan A. Engelking, 5740 N. Broadway, Norman, $2,247.63; Clearspring Kingdom Amanda Cooper, $2,247.63.
Linda J. Charles contract to Jeff & Ann Powell, 3367 N. Sugar St., Norman, $851,27; Clearspring Kingdom Amanda Cooper, $851.27.
Linda J. Charles contract to Jeff & Ann Powell, near 3367 N. Sugar St., Norman, $527.52; Clearspring Kingdom Amanda Cooper, $527.52.
Pershing Township
Nathan Engelking, 6725 W 700 N, containing 4.449 acres, Freetown, $1,677.07; M&M Investment Group, $16,000.
Doyle E. Lucas Jr., 6854 N. Maple St., Freetown, $2,548.11; M&M Investment Group LLC, $7,000.
Dennis Shane Deweese, 7975 N State Road 135 containing 2.3 acres, Freetown; Savvy IN LLC, $28,000.
Kelli Beth Bode, 9293 S State Road 135, Freetown, $2,461.22; Savvy IN LLC, $45,000.
Redding Township
Nicholas J. Sowder, .143 of an acre near 504 E. 13th St., SY, $218.88; Andrew Royalty, $218.88.
Salt Creek Township
Dean E. Barger, 7690 N 675 W, Freetown, $1,053.99; Shammah Investments LLC, $8,500.
Vernon Township
Wendell L. Adams, 403 W. Howard St, Crothersville, $1,079.61; Ricci D. & Alisa K. Sweazy, $1,079.61.
Louis B. & Leah D. Rusch, 202 W. Walnut St., Crothersville, $941.72; Town of Crothersville, $2,000.
Grover Stacey, Lot 6 near 400 Mill Street, Crothersville, $976.06; Town of Crothersville, $2,000.
Jessica D. Clay, 12477 E 600 S, Crothersville, $1,676.21; Cloverleaf Short Alternative Fund, $62,000.
Grover Stacey, 200 N. Armstrong St., Crothersville, $2,272.79; Savvy IN LLC, $24,000.
Grover & Sondra Stacey, 423 S. Armstrong St. containing 3.5 acres, Crothersville, $$10,517.64; Savvy IN LLC, $28,000.
David M. Coombs, 506 S. Park St., Crothersville, $2,784.68; Savvy IN LLC, $5,500
Monte & Wendy Defibaugh, 5353 S 1200 E containing 2 acres, Crothersville, $817.86; Shammah Investments LLC, $62,000.
Grover Stacey, 208 E. Dixon St., Crothersville, $877.35; Shammah Investments LLC, $2,000.

Crothersville Woman Uninjured In Fatal I-65 Crash

An early morning car versus deer crash resulted in a separate fatality crash involving the car and a northbound semi-truck, last Saturday morning, Oct. 24.
Shortly after 4 a.m. Saturday, a 2015 Nissan Versa traveling northbound on I-65 near the 26.5 mile-marker struck a deer in the roadway south of the Scottsburg exit, According to Indiana State Police Sgt. Carey Huls.
The vehicle was disabled due to the crash and remained partially in the right-hand lane, Huls related. The driver, Veronica McCall of Crothersville, exited the car due to its position in the road.
A short time later, a 2014 Volvo Semi Tractor-Trailer traveling north struck the unoccupied Nissan. After colliding with the car, the semi traveled off the east side of I-65 and up an embankment coming to rest in a treeline, Huls said.
The driver of the semi-truck required extraction, and due to weather conditions, medical helicopters were not able to respond.
The semi-truck driver, 71-year-old Johnny G. Skarb of Wonder Lake, Illinois, was pronounced dead at the scene by the Scott County Coroner’s Office.
The driver of the Nissan was not injured in the crash.
Huls said, I-65 northbound remained closed until approximately 9:30 a.m., and all northbound traffic was diverted off onto US31 while the interstate was closed.

Meth Dealer Sentenced To 8 Years In Prison

Erica Riley, 30, of Underwood, who had pled guilty to a level 2 felony of dealing in methamphetamine was sentenced on Friday by Scott Circuit Court Judge Jason Mount to 8 years in prison followed by two years on home detention, then will have six years of probation according to Scott County Prosecutor Chris Owens.
In May 2018, officers with the Scottsburg Police Department and the Scott County Sheriff’s Office executed a Search Warrant at the residence of Riley.
“During the search, officers found a box under her bed containing around 28 grams of methamphetamine that was located under the bed in the room Ms. Riley shared with another person,” Owens said. “Officers also found drug paraphernalia throughout the house and other indicators of drug use and distribution.”
In speaking to the sentencing, Owens said, “We mean business when it comes to removing drugs and drug dealers from our community,”

America’s Dirty Secret: The Power Of The Minority

by Lee H. Hamilton
As the Senate held hearings and debated the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, attention understandably focused on the policy implications of a 6th conservative vote. What got less notice was an important political fact: If she’s confirmed as expected, it will mean a majority of the Court will have been put there by senators representing a minority of the American people.
Four justices on the Court already—Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh—were confirmed by a Senate “majority” put in office by fewer voters than the senators who opposed them. Barrett will be the fifth.
In fact, the ideal of “majority rule” in the US is mostly window-dressing these days. The people in power as we head toward next Week’s general election increasingly do not represent the will of the American people.
This starts at the top. Of the last three presidents, neither President Trump nor, in his first term, George W. Bush won more votes than their opponents. In a country where ultimate political control is supposed to lie with the majority of citizens, this is an odd result. People in other countries have a hard time grasping how the Electoral College could produce such an outcome.
In the Senate, the Republican senators now in control represent not just a minority of the country’s population, but a minority of its economic activity (as measured by GDP) and of its tax revenues. The Senate has never been democratic, since small states from the very beginning have had the same number of senators as large states. Yet now we’re at the point where the makeup of the Supreme Court for the foreseeable future will be determined by a group of politicians who, as Vox pointed out recently, received 13 million fewer votes than their colleagues across the aisle.
The one federal body that does reflect a majority of the country at the moment is the House of Representatives. Oddly, though, there’s an exception to this: If neither Donald Trump nor Joe Biden is able to win an outright majority of the Electoral College, the decision gets thrown to the House. This hasn’t happened since 1876. And if it does, the decision will be made by each state’s delegation, with each state getting a single vote. Since Republicans control 26 state delegations and Democrats 22 (Pennsylvania is tied; Michigan has seven Democrats, six Republicans, and one independent), it opens the real possibility of a president installed by a House minority.
So the US finds itself in an uncomfortable situation: Our basic institutions no longer reflect majority rule. In the past, when bipartisanship was considered a congressional value and the Senate majority paid greater attention to trying to accommodate the views of the minority, this might not have mattered as much. But politics is fought with bare knuckles these days, and political power is seen as bestowing the ability—and hence, the right—to ram through legislation and court nominees.
The most likely solution to all this is at the ballot box. That’s certainly what Americans expect. But there’s also increasing talk of alternatives. Some politicians and activists are pushing to eliminate the Electoral College—in fact, a bipartisan majority of the House tried just that in 1969, only to have it killed by a filibuster of senators from small states. More radically, the late John Dingell of Michigan, the longest-serving House member ever, came to believe that the Senate itself should be abolished; as he would point out, the largest populated state in the country gets just two seats, while the smallest 20 states, whose combined population is still smaller, get 40 seats.
Daunting procedural obstacles stand in the way of reforming the governing structure of this country so that it better represents the majority of voters. And ensuring attention to the rights and political interests of the political minority is baked into both our Constitution and Americans’ enduring sense of political fairness and decency. But if this minority-rule pattern continues and US political and judicial leadership no longer represents a majority, one has to wonder, with Lincoln, how long such a country can endure.

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Lee Hamilton is a Senior Advisor for the Indiana University Center on Representative Government; a Distinguished Scholar at the IU Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies; and a Professor of Practice at the IU O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for 34 years.

An All Hallow’s Eve History

by Curt Kovener

All Hollow’s Eve is this Saturday, but how did it get to be what it is today?
Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago, mostly in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1.
This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred on Oct. 31 they believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.
By the 9th century, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands, where it gradually blended with and supplanted older Celtic rites. In 1000 A.D., the church made Nov. 1 All Souls’ Day, a day to honor the dead. It’s widely believed today that the church was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, church-sanctioned holiday
The All Souls’ Day celebration was also called All-hallows and the night before it, the traditional night of Samhain in the Celtic religion, began to be called All-Hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween.
The celebration of Halloween in early America was extremely limited in colonial New England because of the rigid Protestant belief systems there. Halloween was much more common in Maryland and the southern colonies.
Colonial Halloween festivities featured the telling of ghost stories and mischief-making of all kinds. By the middle of the 19th century, annual autumn festivities were common, but Halloween was not yet celebrated everywhere in the country.
In the second half of the 19th century, America was flooded with new immigrants. These new immigrants, especially the millions of Irish fleeing the Irish Potato Famine, helped to popularize the celebration of Halloween nationally.
Borrowing from European traditions, Americans began to dress up in costumes and go house to house asking for food or money, a practice that eventually became today’s “trick-or-treat” tradition. Young women believed that on Halloween they could divine the name or appearance of their future husband by doing tricks with yarn, apple parings or mirrors.
In the late 1800s, there was a move in America to mold Halloween into a holiday more about community and neighborly get-togethers than about ghosts, pranks and witchcraft. At the turn of the century, Halloween parties for both children and adults became the most common way to celebrate the day.
By the 1920s and 1930s, Halloween had become a secular but community-centered holiday, with parades and town-wide Halloween parties as the featured entertainment. Despite the best efforts of many schools and communities, vandalism began to plague some celebrations in many communities during this time.
Between 1920 and 1950, the centuries-old practice of trick-or-treating was also revived. Trick-or-treating was a relatively inexpensive way for an entire community to share the Halloween celebration. In theory, families could also prevent tricks being played on them by providing the neighborhood children with small treats.
A new American tradition was born, and it has continued to grow. Americans spend an estimated $6 billion annually on Halloween, making it the country’s second largest commercial holiday after Christmas.