UPDATE: Silver Alert has been cancelled

UPDATE COLUMBUS, Ind. – The Silver Alert for Stephanie Ann Hudak has been cancelled. CPD detectives, following up on a tip from the public, located Stephanie Hudak at a rural Bartholomew County residence. COLUMBUS, Ind. – Investigators from the Columbus Police Department (CPD) are asking for the public's assistance in locating a local woman who is considered a missing/endangered adult. Officers are seeking information on the whereabouts of Stephanie A. Hudak, 36, who was last seen at her residence in the 200 block of S. Brooks Street on Tuesday night. Hudak is 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighs approximately 150 pounds. She has brown hair and brown eyes and was last seen wearing a dark colored t-shirt and dark colored sweatpants. A Silver Alert has been issued statewide for Hudak, who is believed to be in the company of 41-year-old Steven R. Burton. He is described as being 5 feet 2 inches tall and weighing about 170 pounds. They may be traveling together in a red, 1990’s Dodge Durango that has chrome taillights and black wheels. Anyone with information in regards to Hudak's or Burton's whereabouts is urged to call CPD dispatch at 812-379-1689. Information and tips can be left anonymously.

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Assessment values mailed this Friday

COLUMBUS, Ind. – Bartholomew County Assessor Ginny Whipple says that notices of assessment values (Form 11s) are going in the mail this Friday, April 26. Notices are mailed every year to property owners to inform them of the new assessed values on which they will be paying taxes in 2020. The assessed value on Form 11 is the starting point for calculating annual property tax payments. The actual tax bill is calculated using the tax rate set by the County Council later in the year. The county assessor sends notices to taxpayers so they know whether their values are increasing or decreasing, which can be caused by changes to the property such as new construction, remodeling or demolition of buildings, or by fluctuations in the market. If you have questions about your assessment, call Assessor Whipple for an appointment at 812-379-1505. The Bartholomew County Assessor’s Office is at 440 Third St., in Columbus. State guidelines call for an appeal process and the deadline to appeal is June 17.

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Columbus zoning board approves two variances

COLUMBUS, Ind. – The Columbus Board of Zoning Appeals approved two requests at its Tuesday evening meeting. Ted Piehl was granted the ability to create a lot from his property at 8942 S. County Road 400W, even though the parent tract remainder will be 2.27 acres, substantially less than the 10 acres required by the pertinent ordinance. Piehl told the board he wants to build a home. Another home on the property is occupied by his son. The board approved, with the provision that the right of ways on County Roads 400W and 550S be dedicated to the city plan. Shane Rocker’s request to put a chain link fence on his rental property at 809 Fairview Drive was also given a thumbs-up. The ordinance in question prohibits, unless variance criteria are met, such fences. Rocker explained to the board that his tenants expressed concern for the safety of their pets.  

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Columbus chamber honors four local women

COLUMBUS, Ind. – The Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce has scheduled its Women in Leadership Lunch for Friday, May 10, at 11:30 at The Commons. Cost is $45 per person or $350 for a table of eight. This year’s theme is “Brave, not perfect,” based on the best-selling book by Reshma Saujani. With that in mind, the chamber has selected four inspiring, risk-taking women to be recognized.
  • Dawn Andrews founded a lipgloss business that has grown to include other cosmetics, skincare, and bath products. garb2ART products are popping up at major retailers like Von Maur and Bed, Bath and Beyond.
  • Grace Kestler sees no limits. Whether she's traveling the world solo or running for public office, she fiercely works to tear down barriers for herself and for others.
  • Lisa Pein knows the cost of addiction. She openly shares her experiences to encourage others who are choosing sobriety.
  • Telma Santana founded a trucking service with one truck and one driver. Today, this woman-owned, minority-owned enterprise owns 20 trucks and has eight more on order.
The honorary chair is Beth Stroh, owner of Viewpoint Books.

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Vallonia man dies in Jackson Co. crash

SEYMOUR, Ind. – The Indiana State Police (ISP) responded to a two-vehicle crash on State Road 258, just west of Seymour, at around 9 p.m. on Friday, that resulted in the death of a Vallonia man.

The initial investigation by the ISP-Versailles Crash Reconstruction Team, indicates that a red pickup truck, driven by Lamar Anderson, 61, of Vallonia, was traveling westbound on State Road 258, near the White River Bridge, just west of Seymour. Anderson’s vehicle left the north side of the roadway and struck a guardrail before coming to rest facing eastbound in the westbound lane. The truck was then struck head-on by a westbound SUV being driven by Elizabeth Helwig, 70, of Seymour.

Anderson was pronounced deceased by the Jackson County Coroner’s Office. Helwig was transported to Schneck Medical Center in Seymour for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.

Toxicology results on both drivers are pending. The crash remains under investigation.

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