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Friday Facts: Government Information You Can Use

This Week's Facts:

  1. World Cancer Day Raises Awareness, Connects Public to Resource

  2. National Day of Celebration Planned for Anniversary of Title IX

  3. State Dedicates Fund to Eliminate Blighted Properties in Communities

  4. Online Resources Offer Tips for Protecting Pets in Extreme Cold

State Climate Office Predicts Cold, Snowy Winter to Continue

Expect the bitterly cold temperatures and frequent snow showers of the past two months to continue through February, the Indiana State Climate Office says in their latest press release.  Predicting the end of winter isn’t always a job for the experts, so here’s a tidbit of local news which appeared in the February 6, 1902 issue of The Plymouth Tribune newspaper out of Marshall County. “When the ground hog emerged from his winter residence Sunday his shadow loomed up as big as a barn and he retreated to his fireside to spend six weeks in thawing the frost from his whiskers.” View the digital image of this paper and other Indiana newspapers free through the Chronicling America website. Keep up with the latest news about the Indiana State Library’s ongoing project to digitize historical Indiana newspapers here.


Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Kim Brown-Harden
Federal Documents Coordinator

Andrea Glenn
State Documents Coordinator

Indiana Federal Depository Library Program


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World Cancer Day Raises Awareness, Connects Public to Resources

World Cancer DayTuesday, February 4 was World Cancer Day 2014, promoting awareness about cancer facts, cancer myths, and the many international resources available for education about the disease. The U.S. National Cancer Institute provides an online Q&A about Common Cancer Myths and Misconceptions from its Cancer.gov website. A basic overview of the disease, online tools & publications, and links to current research are available on the MedlinePlus: Cancer website. The CDC website about Cancer Prevention and Control identifies the different types of cancers, gives information by topic, and connects to various social media outlets about the topic. The American Cancer Society distributes new statistics and news on cancer-related information, programs, and events across the country via its website and local offices across the country. Search for resources in your area here.


National Day of Celebration Planned for Anniversary of Title IX

National Girls and Women in Sports DayForty-two years ago today, Congress passed Title IX, guaranteeing gender equity in federally funded school programs, including athletics. The recognition of this anniversary coincides with National Girls and Women in Sports Day, celebrated across the nation during the first week of February.

The theme for this year was ‘Passing the Torch, Blazing the Trail,’ according to the Women’s Sports Foundation. A brief detailing the event was posted yesterday on their website. Several national organizations sponsor the celebration: Girls, Incorporated; Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.; the National Association for Girls and Women in Sports; the National Women's Law Center; the Women's Sports Foundation; and the YWCA of the U.S.A. For more information about Indiana-based programs for young women, you can contact the Indiana Commission for Women.


State Dedicates Fund to Eliminate Blighted Properties in Communities

Hardest Hit Fund Blight Elimination Program Indiana municipalities may now qualify for funds to help demolish blighted and abandoned homes in their communities through the Hardest Hit Fund Blight Elimination Program aimed at preventing foreclosures.

Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann, who oversees the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA), announced in a press release dated February 3, that the U.S. Department of the Treasury approved the use of $75 million of Indiana’s Hardest Hit Funds for its Blight Elimination Program. The Blight Elimination Program will provide funds to Indiana municipalities, through a competitive application process, to address foreclosure prevention and eliminate blighted, vacant, and abandoned homes.

These funds will be drawn from the $221.7 million Hardest Hit Fund money allocated to Indiana. The program would allow communities to demolish blighted properties and offer a variety of end uses for the newly cleared properties, such as green space or redevelopment.

The State of Indiana has been divided into funding divisions. Any municipality wishing to receive funds to demolish blighted homes must apply to IHCDA. Municipalities will apply for funds from the funding division in which their county is located. The first funding division application period will begin in February 2014.

IHCDA estimates that approximately 4,000 blighted and/or abandoned homes in Indiana will be demolished through the Blight Elimination Program. Interested municipal leaders can visit www.877gethope.org/blight to learn more and apply.


Online Resources Offer Tips for Protecting Pets in Extreme Cold

Pet Safety Tips for the Extreme ColdBy February, most of us are accustomed to the winter weather and we remember to bundle up as we exit the door in the morning. However, how do we care for our pets in the cold weather? The resources below have plenty of guidelines and tips for pet safety during extreme winter temperatures.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the CDC say in their guide to Extreme Cold, “if you have pets, bring them indoors. If you cannot bring them inside, provide adequate shelter to keep them warm and make sure that they have access to unfrozen water.”

ABC News and Good Morning America gives us six recent Pet Safety Tips for the Extreme Cold. The American Veterinary Medical Association provides a longer guide to Cold Weather Pet Safety. The Humane Society reminds us to Protect Your Pet During Winter and Cold Weather with tips to keep cats, dogs, and horses safe and comfortable.

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