Whitney Downard

Whitney Downard

A native of upstate New York, Whitney previously covered statehouse politics for CNHI’s nine Indiana papers, focusing on long-term healthcare facilities and local government. Prior to her foray into Indiana politics, she worked as a general assignment reporter for The Meridian Star in Meridian, Mississippi. Whitney is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University (#GoBonnies!), a community theater enthusiast and cat mom.

Committee concludes with draft recommendations for child care

By: - October 18, 2023

The third and final meeting of the interim committee on Public Health, Behavioral Health and Human Services concluded with a unanimous vote to approve a draft report of recommendations — though that report wasn’t yet available for public review.  Much of the final report focused on child care testimony from an August meeting, where stakeholders […]

Statehouse spotlights to support Israel ‘moving on’

By: - October 18, 2023

A dozen spotlights illuminating the night sky around downtown Indianapolis in the colors of the Israel flag will ‘move on’ from the Statehouse, a rare and possibly first-of-its-kind display that appeared Monday morning. Gov. Eric Holcomb said on X, formerly known as Twitter, that the spotlights and the Israeli flag over the Governor’s Residence in […]

SBOA details auditing duties and added COVID responsibilities

By: - October 13, 2023

The influx of billions of dollars in federal relief funneled through the state to Indiana’s counties, cities and townships has increased the workload for the State Board of Accounts (SBOA) by 30%, as the entity audits local budgets and implements federal spending requirements.  “Lots of communities are kind of ‘sitting on their money.’ They’re not […]

Second Stellantis, Samsung EV battery plant announced for Kokomo

By: - October 11, 2023

Stellantis and Samsung SDI announced a second planned gigafactory in Kokomo, Indiana to manufacture EV batteries. (Getty Images)

FSSA drops Molina as Managed Care contractor

By: - October 10, 2023

The Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) dropped one of four companies it previously recommended to operate as one of the state’s Managed Care Entities after determining that finalist Molina Healthcare didn’t meet its standards.  According to the agency’s website, Molina “has been unable to secure a (Dual-Eligible Special Needs Plan) contract with the Centers […]

Managed care transition set to go live July 2024

By: - October 2, 2023

As Hoosiers are getting older and Indiana’s long-term care system evolves to embrace the needs of a more complicated population, state officials are finalizing a potential $15 billion worth of contracts pivoting to managed care. Managed care is a model for delivering health care services, ranging from in-home offerings to institutionalized care like nursing homes. […]

Sandlin honored in Statehouse memorial service

By: - September 29, 2023

Dozens of lawmakers, Statehouse staffers, family members and state leaders gathered at the Statehouse Friday to honor the service of Sen. Jack Sandlin, 72, who died unexpectedly earlier this month. “Let me be clear: he would have hated this,” Sen. Aaron Freeman, a close colleague and fellow Republican, said, jokingly. Sandlin’s service lasted just 30 […]

Maxwell sworn in to Indiana Senate, succeeds Perfect

By: - September 28, 2023

Indiana’s newest State Sen. Randy Maxwell, a Republican from Guilford, was sworn in Thursday by Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Loretta Rush, succeeding Sen. Chip Perfect, of Lawrenceburg, who resigned earlier this year. Maxwell will serve the remainder of Perfect’s term through November 2026 and represents all of Dearborn, Jefferson, Ohio, Scott and Switzerland counties […]

AARP ranks Indiana in the middle for long-term care system services

By: - September 28, 2023

A new report from AARP ranking each state’s system for long-term care placed Indiana in the middle of the pack — the third of five tiers of rankings that considered support for family caregivers and diversity of in home- and community-based services.  Indiana came in 27th, an improvement from its 2020 ranking of 44th. The […]

Holcomb: Indiana prepared for possible federal government shutdown

By: - September 27, 2023

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb told the press Wednesday that the state was prepared for what appears to be an imminent federal government shutdown that would impact nearly 24,000 Hoosiers — most of whom are employed by cabinet-level agencies. “I hope it doesn’t (happen) … this is avoidable if cooler heads prevail,” Holcomb said at a […]

Uncertain future for providers as child care crisis looms

By: - September 27, 2023

As the director of Bridges Transition Childcare in Evansville, Vanessa Quarles wears many hats.  She writes the grants, coordinates training to comply with those grants, pays the bills, purchases curricular materials, covers for sick employees and hires personnel — the latter of which includes Facebook ads, distributing fliers and visiting local colleges to recruit applicants. […]

Number of Hoosiers without health insurance declines

By: - September 21, 2023

The number of Hoosiers without health insurance decreased between 2021 and 2022, falling 0.6% to 7% uninsured, according to a release from the United States Census Bureau.  “For seven of the states with lower uninsured rates in 2022, the difference was driven by increased private coverage. For 10 states, the uninsured rate decrease was related […]