Japan-Owned Manufacturer Expanding in Crothersville, Adding Jobs PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marcus Amos   
Friday, 16 February 2018 16:20



Aisin Drivetrain (ADI), a Japan-owned manufacturer of automotive and heavy equipment parts, announced plans today to expand its operations in Jackson County, creating up to 47 new jobs by the end of 2018.

"Global companies like Aisin Drivetrain continue to find success in Indiana, and they provide good jobs for Hoosiers," Governor Eric J. Holcomb said. "We'll continue sharing our economic success story and ensuring businesses like Aisin Drivetrain have access to our skilled workforce and pro-growth business environment."

The company, which is a subsidiary of Kariya, Japan-headquartered Aisin Seiki Co., will invest more than $16 million to expand its manufacturing operations at 1001 Industrial Way in Crothersville. ADI, which manufactures automotive components and systems such as industrial transmissions, commercial transmissions and power steering columns, will renovate and purchase new equipment in order to accommodate design changes for steering columns and other automotive components being incorporated by its customers. The company will supply parts for vehicles such as the Toyota Avalon and Lexus ES, and plans to begin work on upgrades later this month.

"Aisin Drivetrain is proud to be a major contributor to the local Crothersville community, including Jackson County and Scott County, Indiana," said Scott Shade, executive vice president and company officer for ADI. "ADI maintains a diverse, equal opportunity working environment to facilitate professional growth. ADI strives to provide a stable working environment for its employees and their families. Crothersville is an ideal site to support Aisin’s company operations with its easy access to Interstate 65 and its close proximity to major cities. This allows ADI to work closely with its customers. Hoosiers work hard; ADI works hard in A State That Works!"

ADI employs more than 382 full-time Hoosier employees at its Crothersville facility with plans to complete hiring for manufacturing positions in August. New positions are expected to offer competitive wages. Interested applicants can apply by mailing resumes to the Crothersville facility or completing an application in person.

Since 2008, ADI has invested nearly $80 million into its Indiana operations. Aisin Seiki, which is part of the Toyota Group, designs and manufactures automotive and industrial parts as well as lifestyle and energy products. The company is one of the top ten global automotive suppliers, producing a variety of parts including transmission, brake, engine and IT units. Aisin employs more than 115,400 people across the world, including approximately 3,934 in Indiana. Including ADI, Aisin has 10 companies in Indiana, including Aisin USA Manufacturing in Seymour, Aisin Chemical Indiana in Crothersville, ATTC Mfg. in Tell City, ADVICS in Terre Haute, Aisin Logistics in Franklin, and INTAT Precision in Rushville.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered AISIN Drivetrain Inc up to $425,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company’s job creation plans. These incentives are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The town of Crothersville will consider additional incentives at the request of the Jackson County Industrial Development Corporation.

"Any growth in our industry is good for the community," said Crothersville Town Council President Danieta Foster. "We are pleased with this news and look forward to continuing to support, in any way we can, our industrial community."

ADI is one of more than 280 Japanese business establishments in Indiana that employ more than 58,000 Hoosiers. Among all U.S. states, Indiana has the largest amount of Japanese investment per capita. Last year, 40 foreign-based companies committed to locating or growing in Indiana, planning to create 5,607 new jobs for Hoosiers.

ADI is a manufacturer of a wide range of products for customers in the automotive and heavy equipment industries including, Toyota, Lexus, FCA and Nissan. The company’s products include industrial transmissions, commercial transmissions and power steering columns.

Community saddened at death of Commissioner Kelley Robbins PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Friday, 16 February 2018 16:19



Kelley Robbins loved to talk, sometimes about his business, sometimes about the business of the county, but, most of all, about his family.

He and wife Jean had two children. They were also blessed with the next generation, two grandchildren, who could overwhelm this gentle man with their activities. But he loved every minute of it. “Oh, those grandkids are just terrible,” he’d comment, ending the conversation with a wink of his eye and a broad grin. He loved his family deeply.

He also loved Scott County. He was born in 1953 in Scottsburg to the late John M. Sr. and Goldie Pearl Comer Robbins. The family farmed in Finley Township with his dad serving many years on the Scott County Council. That’s probably where his interest in local politics took root.

Kelley and his brothers and sisters all graduated from Scottsburg High School, Kelley saying goodbye in 1971. He enrolled at Purdue University, getting a degree in horticulture and returning in 1974 to start Robbins’ Landscaping and Nursery, building a couple of greenhouses and planting fields of young spruce that he trimmed into fine-looking Christmas trees. Dozens of families over the past 42 years have trekked across his fields, searching for the ideal tree to take home and decorate.

Kelley married the former Jean Mulcahy in 1978. They soon added a daughter and son to the Robbins clan.

Kelley became a member of the County Council when John Sr. retired. He served for 27 years. He offered his services to the Board of County Commissioners when a vacancy occurred about three years ago. He won that Democrat caucus. He rarely missed a meeting of either the County Council or Commissioners, but his seat was empty for the two most recent meetings as he battled cancer and heart problems.

He lost that battle at his home late on Friday morning, February 9, surrounded by his family and several of his friends. Kelley was 64.

During his service to his community, he was a member of the Church of the American Martyrs and Knights of Columbus Council 8052. For his county, he served as a president and a member of the Scott County Economic Development Corporation board of directors and the Southeast Indiana Recycling District board. He enjoyed serving and most enjoyed the conversations he’d have with others wanting this county to move forward despite its problems.

He strongly supported moving the Scott County Health Department into a new building. At a county auction last summer, he was there, moving around, chatting with folks on the grounds of the department’s new home. “I think (improving local health services) is one of best things we’ve done in a while for our residents. We need to concentrate more on living better lives, healthier lives,” he said once after a fairly contentious meeting.

Denny Wilson, Scott County Democrat Party Chairman, commented that Kelley will be greatly missed. “He has served this county for many years, providing us with leadership. His efforts have helped this community,” stated Wilson.

Bob Tobias, District 1 Commissioner, also noted that Scott County “…has lost a beloved official who distinguished himself as a great public servant to all. He was dedicated to continue to move this county forward. I really don’t have the words to express his loss. Kelley was not just a fellow Commissioner, he was my friend. It was my honor and privilege to serve on the Board of Commissioners with Kelley. He will be greatly missed.”

The newest member of the Board of Commissioners, Mike Jones, also expressed his feeling of a great loss. “I was shocked to hear of his passing and saddened. I’ve known Kelley most of my life and have always known him to have a great passion for Scott County. He has served the county well. We offer our prayers and thoughts to Jean, Katie, Kyle and the entire family,” Jones stated.

Calling at the Collins Funeral Home was conducted on Monday evening, February 12, and the mass of Christian burial was held at his church on Tuesday morning, February 13.

Burial was in Bethel Cemetery near Leota back in Finley Township.

Memorial gifts may be arranged through the funeral home staff to benefit a new endowment created in his memory, the Kelley Robbins Endowment Fund for Public Health.

Online condolences may be expressed to the family by visiting www.collinsfuneralhome.net.


Voters will decide several state-level races in May 8 Primary PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Friday, 16 February 2018 16:18


The May 8 Primary Election has several races on the state level which voters will decide.

People will be watching the State Senator race for the 45th District this fall. Current State Senator Jim Smith, a Republican, is not running. Chris Garten of Scottsburg is the Republican nominee. The Democrat nominee is John Perkins of Bethlehem.

Two Republicans have filed as nominees for the District 66 State Representative seat held by the lone Democrat candidate, Dr. Terry Goodin of Austin. Voters pulling the Republican ticket this primary will select either Troy M. Bowling of Charlestown or Joseph VanWye of Madison as their fall candidate.

In the Sixth District Congressional race, six Democrats and seven Republicans are listed as nominees. Current Congressman Luke Messer, a Republican, is seeking the candidacy for U.S. Senator.

Democrats are: George T. Holland of Rushville, Jeannine L. Lake of Muncie, Kenneth J. Lave of Covington, James E. “Jim” Pruett of Greensburg, Lane Siekman of Aurora and Joshua A. Williamson of Muncie.

Among Republican nominees in the Sixth District is the brother of former Indiana governor/now U.S. Vice President Mike Pence. Gregory J. “Greg” Pence of Columbus is considered the stronger candidate in this field of seven. Nominees also include: Mike Campbell of Cambridge City, Thomas G. Ferkinhoff of Richmond, William G. “Bill” Frazier of Muncie, Jonathan M. Lamb of Yorktown, Stephen M. MacKenzie of Fortville and Jeffrey L. Smith of Liberty.

Greg Pence is scheduled to be the featured speaker at the Scott County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day dinner this spring.

There are three Democrats and two Republicans who would like to serve a term as Ninth District Congressman. The three Democrats are Daniel Canon of New Albany and Robert “Rob” Chatlos and Elizabeth “Liz” S. Watson, both of Bloomington.

Republican incumbent Joseph “Trey” Hollingsworth of Jeffersonville will face challenger James Dean Alspach of Morgantown to determine that party’s fall candidate.

The Republican race for U.S. Senator is set for that political party as well this spring. Democrat incumbent Senator Joseph “Joe” Donnelly of Granger is the only Democrat nominee. On the Republican ticket, not only is current Sixth District Congressman Luke Messer signed up, so are five other Republicans. They include Michael “Mike” Braun of Jasper, Andrew Horning, Mark A. Hurt, Theodore “Todd” Rokita of Indianapolis and Andrew Takami of New Albany.


Several Primary Election races for voters to consider on May 8 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Friday, 16 February 2018 16:16



Voters in the 2018 Primary Election scheduled to be held on Tuesday, May 8, will find quite a selection of local nominees from which to choose candidates to represent their parties in November’s General Election.

One of what will be closely watched races on both the Democrat and Republican slates is the job of Scott County Sheriff.

Democrats vying for the position include Sgt. Jerry Goodin, currently a sergeant with the Indiana State Police, Sellersburg post, and Sgt./Detective Steven Herald, who serves with the Scottsburg Police Department. Both graduated from Austin High School and have made law enforcement their life’s work.

On the Republican primary ticket will be Rickey L. Julian and Jacob D. Sanders. Julian’s name should be familiar since several in his family have served in the position over the years. He is employed as a mechanic with the Scott County Highway Department. Sanders is a deputy under current Sheriff Dan McClain.

A third Republican, current Chief Deputy Shawn S. Mayer, dropped out of the race two weeks ago. He is said to be contemplating a run for the office as an independent candidate. Mayer has until July 20 to register as an independent.

There is also a race on the Republican slate for District 3 County Commissioner, the seat held by Kelley Robbins, who died February 9. The local Democrat Party will conduct a caucus to determine who will serve out Robbins’ term, which ends December 31.

Former sheriff John C. Lizenby is the lone Democrat nominee for May 8. Three Republicans threw their hats in the primary ring, however. They include Eric Gillespie, who is currently serving as District 3 County Councilman, and newcomers John A. English and Gregory “Greg” Prince.

District 2 County Councilman Albert “Ab” Watts of Austin has a Democrat challenger this spring. She is Kershawna-Kay N. Romans of Scottsburg. No Republican is running in the primary for the seat.

The seat for County Council District 3 has attracted multiple primary candidates. Democrats vying include Jim Boswell and Pat Bridgewater. Both have served previously in county offices. Republicans are Rachael N. Hardin and Jeremy W. McDaniel.

Township board races in Jennings and Lexington Townships have developed in both parties for May 8. There are three seats open on each township board, which advises the person who serves as township trustee.

In Jennings Township, six Democrats, including incumbents Mahala “Haley” Baker, Matthew T. “Todd” Campbell and Donald A. Sipe, are running. Challengers are Jeremy E. Arnold, Kevin D. Salyers and Linda D. Spicer. Arnold is a law enforcement officer. A county worker, Salyers serves as Jennings Twp. Fire Department Chief. Spicer has served on the Scott School District 1 board of school trustees and ran recently for the Austin mayor’s job.

The lone Republican wanting to serve on the board is Joseph P. Guarneri, who is a deputy with the Sheriff’s Department.

In Lexington Township, there are four Democrat candidates, Lea A. Robbins Callico, Debra K. Conover, Charles M. “Mike” Higgins and incumbent John Kimmick. Republicans Aaron Bressler and Tammy Lowe Caudell, both incumbents, will be automatically listed for the General Election slate.

Locally, Democrats will also decide who will be the Democrat Precinct Committeeman for Lexington 1. The voters’ choice will be either Chaffee R. Miles, the incumbent, or his challenger, Guy M. Townsend. This is the only precinct committeeman’s job that is contested. It will be on Democrats’ ballots, but none of the unchallenged precinct committeemen nor Democrat and Republican state convention delegates will appear.

Democrat delegates include twin brothers Dalton and Dylan Baker of Austin, Taylor P. Stewart and Linda F. Wilson, both of Scottsburg, and Guy M. Townsend of Lexington. Republican delegates are Chris Albertson, Philip D. “David” Dowd and Scott County Republican Party Chairman Kenneth D. Hughbanks. All are of Scottsburg.

Local Democrats who filed for office and who have no primary challengers are listed below. Incumbents are designated with an (I):

County Auditor: Tammy Stout Johnson (I).

County Council, District 1: Donnie Richie (I).

County Council, District 4: Raymond W. Jones.

Prosecuting Attorney: Chris A. Owens (I).

State Representative, District 66: Terry Goodin (I).

Finley Township Board: Shawn Hurt (I) and John M. Robbins Jr. (I).

Johnson Township Board: Glenda Buckner (I), Lonnie Combs (I), Linda K. Smith (I).

Finley Township Trustee: Misty Brunner (I).

Jennings Township Trustee: Virgil Johnson (I).

Johnson Township Trustee: Robbie Combs (I).

Lexington Township Trustee: Danny Basham (I).

Vienna Township Trustee: Marsha L. Miller-Smith.

Vienna Township Advisory Board: Rosie Alsup (I), Mark Hays and Sam H. LaMaster.

The Republican Primary slate will include:

County Assessor: Diana Cozart (I).

County Council, District 1: Justin Cheatham.

County Council, District 4: Christopher D. “Chris” Albertson (I).

Vienna Township Trustee: Gordon Julian (I).

Vienna Township Advisory Board: Doug Corum (I), Yvonne Dowd and Scott A. Zellers (I).


Clark candidates file for upcoming election PDF Print E-mail
Written by Janna Ross   
Wednesday, 14 February 2018 09:29

Voters now know who will appear on their ballot when they head to the polls for the primary election on Tuesday, May 8.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 February 2018 09:30
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