Daily Journal staff report
Edinburgh is looking for a new person to manage the town’s finances after the clerk-treasurer announced his retirement.
Jackie Smith has served as the town’s financial manager for 10 years and was re-elected as an independent candidate last year. He plans to leave at the end of the year, with three years left on his four-year term.
Smith was an independent, so there’s no party caucus to appoint his replacement in the usual way that a vacancy is filled, town attorney Dustin Huddleston said.
Instead, the town council will appoint the new clerk-treasurer, he said.
Council president Ron Hoffman said the council hoped to name a replacement by the end of the year.
The clerk-treasurer is responsible for overseeing the town’s $4.8 million budget and its finances, handling payroll for 60 town employees and maintaining town records.
Smith, 62, said he was re-evaluating his life after four close friends recently died. He said their deaths made him reconsider what he wanted to do with the rest of his life, especially since he had survived a life-threatening illness in the 1990s.
“It got me thinking that I have some more years to enjoy life,” he said.
Report: Driver refused blood-alcohol test
A Bloomington woman was arrested after driving the wrong way on State Road 37 in the Center Grove area.
Michelle Lea Hawes, 47, 1559 W. Leighton Lane, Bloomington, was arrested on charges of reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident, operating while intoxicated refusal, and operating while intoxicated with endangerment.
A 911 caller reported a vehicle driving north in the southbound lanes of State Road 37 about 10 p.m. Wednesday, according to a Johnson County Sheriff’s Office report.
A sheriff’s deputy stopped the driver, who appeared dazed, had trouble standing and smelled of alcohol, the report said.
Hawes refused a blood-alcohol test, according to the police report. Police later got a search warrant to get a blood sample.
Her car had extensive damage on the passenger side, including a missing window, according to the report. The deputy said she might have been involved in a hit-and-run accident at State Road 37 and Olive Branch Road, the report said.
Hawes, who was splattered with mud and grass, told the deputy that she didn’t remember what happened but that she may have driven into a ditch, the report said.
She was arrested and taken to the Johnson County jail, where she was being held on $4,000 bond.
Police: Franklin resident stabbed with screwdriver
A Franklin man told police he was stabbed with a screwdriver outside a local motel.
Daniel Neumann, 21, received a minor shoulder injury from the stabbing shortly after 7 a.m. Thursday and was not taken to a hospital, according to a Johnson County Sheriff’s Office report.
Police are looking for the assailant, who Neumann said was wearing all black clothing and a black stocking cap and had a tattoo in Japanese on the right side of his neck, the report said.
Neumann told police the suspect attacked him near the trash bin area at the Sleep-N-Time motel south of Franklin after he had let the suspect borrow a screwdriver, according to the report.
The two men started fighting, and the suspect stabbed Neumann in the shoulder before running south from the motel on U.S. 31, the report said.
Deputies and a dog from the sheriff’s office could not find him, the report said.
Neumann told police he did not know who the suspect was or why he had attacked him, according to the report.
Holiday festivities set for Saturday in Franklin
Downtown Franklin will open the Christmas season with its annual holiday lighting celebration Saturday. A lighted parade, visits with Santa and a gingerbread house contest will make for a daylong event surrounding the lighting itself.
Local artisans and producers will sell their goods in a special one-day winter market downtown.
Organists Mike Powell and David Lamb will give an organ concert at 4 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 100 E. Madison St. The musicians will play Christmas carols on the church’s historic organ, and refreshments will be provided.
The Artcraft Theatre will show the holiday classic film “A Christmas Story” twice that day. Kids games and carriage and fire-truck rides also will be included in the lighting celebration.
The schedule is as follows:
2 p.m.: “A Christmas Story,” Artcraft Theatre, 51 N. Main St.
2 to 4 p.m.: Christmas cookie contest entries at Mutual Savings Bank, 80 E. Jefferson St.
2 to 4:30 p.m.: Visits with Santa at the Johnson County Museum of History, 135 N. Main St.
2 to 5 p.m.: Gingerbread house contest entries and voting at Mutual Savings Bank.
2 to 8 p.m.: Homegrown, Homemade Winter Market, 56 E. Jefferson St.
4 p.m.: Christmas cookie contest judging at Mutual Savings Bank
4 p.m.: Pipe organ concert at First Presbyterian Church.
5 p.m.: Cookie and gingerbread house winners announced, Mutual Savings Bank.
5:30 p.m.: Lighted holiday parade on Jefferson Street.
6 p.m.: Choral and dance performances at the courthouse; carriage, fire truck, and bus rides; children’s fun zone in parking lot in front of the Artcraft Theatre; lighting of ground displays at Indiana Masonic Home
7 p.m.: Lighting of the courthouse
7:30 p.m.: “A Christmas Story” at the Artcraft Theatre
Store seeks donations for animal shelter
Tractor Supply in Franklin will conduct a donation drive throughout December for the Johnson County Animal Shelter.
Donated items can include food, bowls, cat litter or any other pet supplies for dogs or cats, which will go to the shelter, 2160 Graham Road in Franklin.
Donation bins will be set up inside the store, 540 N. Morton St.
Bazaar proceeds to help church go on missions
People can grab a cookie and Christmas gift and help a local church.
Greenwood United Methodist Church, 525 N. Madison Ave., is hosting Santa’s Cookies and Bazaar from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.
Homemade cookies, cheese balls, sweet breads and other baked goods can be purchased. Vendors will also have crafts, toys and books for sale.
Pictures with Santa will be from 11 a.m. to noon.
Proceeds go toward church missions.
Annual Santa train to visit two towns today
Children will be able to sit on Santa’s lap when his train rolls into Bargersville today.
The Indiana Rail Road Santa Train will visit 12 southern Indiana and Illinois communities during its three-day run. The first stop will be at 3 p.m. in Bargersville.
The train will stop at Main Street and Harriman Avenue in Bargersville and then at 6:30 p.m. at the Morgantown Fire Station, 269 Highland St.
Children who want to visit with Santa will need to get in line before 5 p.m. in Bargersville and 7:30 p.m. in Morgantown. Admission is free.
The train also will distribute donated clothing to families in need.
Company offering breakfast with Santa
A Greenwood business will offer a breakfast and photos with Santa on Dec. 8.
The event will be from 8 a.m. to noon at Approved Mortgage, 107 N. State Road 135, Greenwood.
The event will be a fundraiser benefiting Shepherd Community Center. The breakfast is free and open to the public.
Visitors can donate canned goods and new and unwrapped toys for Shepherd Community Center in Indianapolis, which hosts after-school programs that offer hot meals, homework help and enrichment clubs.
Funeral home conducting festival of lights Sunday
A Greenwood funeral home and cemetery is conducting a festival of lights.
More than 7,000 luminary lights will fill Forest Lawn Cemetery’s roadways from 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday in their annual light show.
People with relatives in the cemetery are encouraged to attend and get a free luminary to honor their relative. Perishable food items also can be donated and will be given to families in need.