Business

A study committee’s proposed recommendations on short-term rentals through sites like Airbnb include broad policy statements for the General Assembly to consider next session. But the recommendations don’t include specific legislative language, and likely don’t change debate on the issue.

Legislation last session to bar local governments from banning short-term rentals failed to pass.

Indiana Pork Producers and a Hancock County family farm took their Statehouse testimony to a hog barn this week. The group is worried lawmakers will put more regulations on animal agriculture.

The legislature is studying large animal farms this summer – barns that hold hundreds to thousands of animals. The larger ones are known as CAFOS.

Hill Farms is slightly smaller. Heather Hill says regulations have become stricter over the decades.

Indiana has begun planning how to use its $40.9 million portion of the Volkswagen pollution settlement.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management, or IDEM, wants public input on a plan to pay to upgrade diesel equipment in places with severe emissions.

VW admitted last year to tampering with emissions equipment in 600,000 of its cars sold in the U.S. The company’s $2.7 billion Clean Air Act settlement includes money for states to offset pollution from the altered cars.

State lawmakers Wednesday heard a lot of support and a few fears about the local impacts of short-term housing rentals through platforms such as Airbnb.

Commerce and Economic Development Study Committee members say they want any future regulations on the issue to protect property rights – for both hosts and their neighbors.

Indiana is partway into a record-setting cash crop harvest – but months of uneven weather conditions have put some farmers behind.

The state’s soybean crop is 42 percent harvested as of this week, about the same as average. But the corn crop lags at just 24 percent.

Purdue University agronomist Bob Nielsen says wet weather earlier this year forced some farmers to plant late or replant their crops, and cool August temperatures lengthened the growing season.

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