The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

State News

July 7, 2013

Hoosiers helping Donnelly learn ways of the U.S. Senate

WASHINGTON — On his weekly trips back home to Indiana, U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly has been snapping photos of high school gyms to add to the Hoosier-themed artwork in his Washington, D.C., office, and collecting mugs for the Wednesday morning coffee hours he hosts for constituents visiting the nation’s capital.

Since taking office six months ago, the freshman senator has immersed himself in big national issues, from immigration reform to the Affordable Care Act. But he’s also been what he calls “laser focused” on staying connected to the people he represents.

For Donnelly, that means frequent travel around the state – where he’s routinely peppered with advice – and a mandate to his staff to respond as quickly as they can to the thousands of emails and phone calls they get each week, especially those that are requests for help navigating the federal bureaucracy.

“Our job is to make sure that if a veteran has a problem, we take care of it. If there’s a Social Security question, we get it answered,” Donnelly said, in a recent interview in his Washington office. “We’re the hired help. We’re here to serve the people of Indiana.”

It’s gotten a little easier to do. In late May, Donnelly and his staff moved out of their temporary Senate office in a cramped basement space with a single phone line and into permanent digs on the 7th floor of the Senate Hart Office Building.

“I think my office is bigger than my house back in South Bend,” said Donnelly, a three-term congressman who had a much smaller office when he was in the House. He works to keep some perspective on his power: On a recent day after filling in as the presiding officer in the Senate – as junior Senators are called to do – Donnelly had one of his standard evening meals: a microwaved frozen dinner.

Text Only
State News
  • Sheriff wants OK to raise wages, keep employees

    A northern Indiana sheriff is asking local officials to lift a pay freeze that took effect during the Great Recession so he can retain employees.

    April 21, 2014

  • 2 Indianapolis fires leave 1 dead, 20 displaced Two Indianapolis fires have left one man dead and about 20 residents of an apartment building looking for new homes.

    April 20, 2014

  • 500 Festival Mini Marathon might not fill field

    With less than two weeks to go, the 38th 500 Festival Mini Marathon might not have a full field for the first time in 12 years.

    April 20, 2014

  • Turner case tests bounds of 'citizen legislature'

    When a legislative ethics panel meets this week to review the case of House Speaker Pro Tem Eric Turner, members could have trouble finding clear-cut answers, in large part because of the Indiana General Assembly's status as a "citizen legislature."

    April 20, 2014

  • NWS - HB0420 - FEMA Kokomo Flooding 03 FEMA’s disaster decisions frustrate state, local leaders FEMA denied the state’s request to declare a “major disaster” after tornadoes swept Indiana last November, despite millions of dollars in damages. The decision prompted protests from Indiana’s Congressional delegation, and it stoked growing frustrations with FEMA, especially in the Midwest.

    April 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • Miami Correctional 06.JPG Indiana county worried about new law's impact

    A new law revamping the state's criminal code has sparked concerns in northeastern Indiana's Allen County that it will saddle the county with new costs and fill up the local jail.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS - HB0216 - Mitch Daniels Purdue office Daniels joins 2016 presidential debate commission

    Mitch Daniels spurned calls to run for the White House in 2012, but the Purdue University president will have a hand in the 2016 race.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0419 - County track - 116 Arabians sweep track titles again Beautiful sunshine and warm temperatures greeted the competitors at the Madison County track meet Friday at Madison-Grant. The Pendleton Heights boys and girls teams were looking to take the county for the third year in a row, but Anderson and Lapel had other ideas. It started off as a record-setting meet and finished with a bang as Pendleton was able to wrap up both titles. The girls held off a stiff challenge from Lapel to win 167.5-147, and the boys took the final event of the night to squeak out a 156.5-148.5 win over Lapel.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • news_southwest.jpg Flight lands safely in Indiana after threat

    An Indianapolis airport spokesman said a Southwest Airlines flight safely made an emergency landing after the airline received some kind of threat.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Indianapolis police officer kills ex-wife, self

    Authorities say an Indianapolis police officer shot and killed his estranged wife, also an officer, and then turned the gun on himself.

    April 18, 2014

Staff Photos


We're looking for your photos! Share your photos of your favorite people, places and Madison County events in our September reader photo gallery. Click here to upload your photos

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide