• March 2, 2017

    Visclosky: Maintain federal transit funding

    Three days after President Donald Trump's administration announced plans to propose deep cuts in federal discretionary spending, U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky urged members of the House Budget Committee to leave funding in place for grant programs that would pay half the cost of the South Shore Line's West Lake Corridor and Double Track NWI projects.

    In testimony offered Tuesday, Visclosky acknowledged the difficulty in balancing "responsible fiscal policies with the need to make investments to support a strong economy.

  • March 1, 2017

    Great Lakes steel output shoots up by 23,000 tons

    Great Lakes steel production rose to 694,000 tons last week, a 3.4 percent increase from the 671,000 tons of output the previous week.

    So far this year, U.S. steelmakers have produced 13.8 million tons of steel, about 4.7 percent more than they did during the same period in 2016.

    Domestic steelmakers used about 74.7 percent of their steelmaking capacity in the week that ended Feb. 25, up from 74.6 percent the previous week, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute. It was up from 73.1 percent during the same time period in 2016 but remains well below the 90 percent capacity utilization some analysts consider as healthy.

  • February 28, 2017

    DOUG ROSS: How to balance the federal budget

    President Donald Trump’s budget will include a 10 percent increase for military spending and a commensurate cut for social programs, the world was told this week. Last week’s exercise in balancing the federal budget puts that decision in perspective.

    U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Ind., and theConcord Coalition, a nonpartisan group promoting fiscal responsibility, asked residents of the 1st Congressional District to make the tough decisions necessary to balance the budget and reduce the national debt.

  • February 23, 2017

    Budget game gives Visclosky look into resident priorities

    The debate by the members of "Congress" over reducing funding for the arts and humanities by $6 billion over 10 years gave U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky a look at what Northwest Indiana residents think about the federal budget.

    "When push comes to shove, I love the arts and humanities but it doesn't put food on the table," said Debra Nelson of Valparaiso, who argued that the arts could be funded by private enterprise, and she preferred seeing the money go toward pre-kindergarten programs.

  • February 14, 2017

    Merrillville tables vote on South Shore project contribution

    MERRILLVILLE — The Town Council has delayed taking action on a resolution that would decrease its investment to the South Shore Line’s West Lake Corridor project, but it looks like reducing its pledge isn't feasible.

    The council decided Tuesday to table voting on the resolution that would drop Merrillville's annual contribution of its County Economic Development Income Tax proceeds from 22 percent to 8 percent for the project. Multiple council members indicated additional discussion is needed about the matter.

    U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky traveled Tuesday to the Region specifically to attend the meeting, and he said an interlocal agreement Merrillville approved for its investment is binding and can't be legally changed.

  • January 16, 2017

    Visclosky: Recommit to King's legacy

    The freezing rain before sunrise Monday did nothing to extinguish the spirits of those who marched to the Hammond Civic Center, even if it extinguished the candles.

    The City of Hammond's annual march and ceremony for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, "Dream With a Purpose," brought young talent from all over the city and residents seeking a renewed sense of self.

    U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Merrillville, asked the crowd to recommit itself to King's legacy and start peacefully protesting as he did with marches and other nonviolent dissent. He pointed out that one of the big victories of the Civil Rights Movement – the Voting Rights Act, in which U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., played a big role – has been gutted by the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • January 14, 2017

    New leadership renews target on Planned Parenthood funding

    With a new administration and Republican control in the House of Representatives and the Senate, promises to defund Planned Parenthood because of concerns over abortion are closer to a reality, proponents and opponents say.

    Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, as well as a local legislator and a public health professional are vehement in their opposition.

  • January 12, 2017

    ArcelorMittal USA secures tariffs of up to 94 percent

    The U.S. International Trade Commission has determined imports of steel plates from Brazil, South Africa and Turkey have been hurting U.S. steelmakers, a decision that will result in tariffs of up to 94 percent.

    ArcelorMittal USA, Nucor and SSAB from Lisle, Illinois, requested the tariffs on cut-to-length steel plates. The United States plans to impose tariffs as high as 50 percent on imports from Turkey, 74.52 percent on imports from Brazil and 94.14 percent on imports from South Africa.

  • January 8, 2017

    Visclosky predicts great future for Region

    MICHIGAN CITY — The future is great for Northwest Indiana, particularly if the country continues to regulate the dumping of foreign steel and investments in transportation are made, said U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Merrillville.

    Visclosky spoke Saturday at a town hall meeting in Michigan City with about 50 people in attendance at City Hall.

  • January 8, 2017

    Congressman prepares for Trump

    SCHERERVILLE — U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Merrillville, told a public forum Sunday night the expansion of the South Shore commuter rail system is one of the keys to Northwest Indiana's economic future.

    "Young people in many instances do not stay. We need investments to change that."

  • December 16, 2016

    West Lake commuter rail plan celebrated, but 'more work to do'

    CHESTERTON — The South Shore Line's governing body gave the railroad's plan to build the nine-mile West Lake Corridor its official endorsement Friday — "a day 30 years in the making," according to the South Shore's president.

    "It's a historic day, it's a day for celebration," Michael Noland said about publication of a draft Environmental Impact Statement for the West Lake Corridor project, which would extend the South Shore south from Hammond to Dyer.

  • December 16, 2016

    Hammond plan for South Shore extension OK'd

    The $600 million South Shore line extension from Hammond to Dyer won the approval Friday of the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District board, clearing the way to begin working on federal approval and funding.

    Called "Hammond Option 2," and suggested by Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott, NICTD will build the Gateway Station about two blocks west of the current Hammond station on Hohman Avenue, south of Gostlin Street in North Hammond.

  • December 11, 2016

    Legacy Project inspires outstanding citizens

    MUNSTER — An idea to engage and inspire youth and young adults to become outstanding and involved citizens took root in this community last spring, becoming an Indiana Bicentennial Legacy Project that has blossomed throughout the Hoosier state.

    On Sunday afternoon, the exact date Indiana became a state in 1816, 13 students from five Munster schools received accolades in a ceremony at Eads Elementary School for completing the DOC 200 project organized by the Munster Junior Historical Society.

  • December 10, 2016

    NIRPC celebrates 50 years of building up the Region

    The largest gatherings of Region elected officials happens several times a year on a Thursday morning in Portage, when the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission gathers mayors, council members, surveyors and more from the three-county area.

    This month, the organization wrapped up celebration of 50 years in existence, marking the anniversary of the creation of its predecessor, the Lake-Porter County Regional Transportation and Planning Commission, by Gov. Richard Branigin in 1966. It was authorized by legislation passed in 1965.

  • November 2, 2016

    Updated Schedule: Moving Indiana Forward Tour

    Please join me and support our outstanding Democratic Candidates at the Moving Indiana Forward rallies in Indiana’s First Congressional District!

  • October 28, 2016

    Federal drug task force expanding into LaPorte, Marion counties

    Fighting the flow of illegal drugs into the Region just got a boost.

    LaPorte and Marion counties have been added to the Lake County High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. The HIDTA designation from the federal Office of National Drug Control Policy will allow those two counties, along with existing members Lake and Porter counties, to access federal resources to combat drug operations and increase enforcement.

  • October 16, 2016

    Crossing the Line — National Parks

    Crossing the line separating Indiana and Illinois sometimes means dealing with different laws and customs. Readers are asked to share ideas for this weekly feature. This week: National parks.

    Neither Indiana nor Illinois are among the 27 states and two U.S. territories that are home to at least one of the 59 national parks.

  • October 15, 2016

    Big changes planned for commuter rail in Michigan City

    MICHIGAN CITY — Plans to get South Shore Line tracks out of the streets of this city and to cut the commute to Chicago by more than half an hour were outlined Thursday night in front of about 100 people.

    The trip to Chicago’s Loop on the South Shore commuter train currently takes about an hour and 40 minutes and boosters of the plan say cutting it to as little as one hour is one key to making Michigan City more prosperous.

    The commute time would be cut by turning the mostly one-track route between Gary and Michigan City into a double track as part of the $210 million Double Track NWI project.

  • October 13, 2016

    Visclosky testifies on pipe imports from Middle East

    U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-1st, today testified for the seventh time this year before the International Trade Commission (ITC), his office announced this morning.


    Today’s hearing was on circular welded carbon-quality steel pipe from Oman, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates, and Vietnam.


    Excerpts from Visclosky’s testimony:

    “As you are well aware, the steel import crisis is perilously threatening the livelihoods of the dedicated workers in steel communities throughout our nation. The recent influx of illegal steel imports has prompted the initiation of nine steel trade cases, and today I am testifying here at the ITC for the seventh time this year. . . .

  • October 12, 2016

    ASCE Northwest Indiana Branch Reactivated

    American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Northwest Indiana Branch (NWIB) recently inducted their Board of Directors and Committee members for the fiscal year 2016-2017 at a ceremony held on October 7, 2016 at the Centennial Park in Munster, Indiana. The program was attended by Congressman Mr. Pete Visclosky US Representative, Indiana District-1, Mr. Bill Dubois, ASCE's Regional Governor, Mr. Dan Vicari of Gary/Chicago International Airport and about 60 attendees from northwest Indiana and south Chicago areas. 

    In a short speech, Mr. Visclosky reiterated the importance of various infrastructure projects in the northwest Indiana especially the proposed West Lake Corridor of the South Shore passenger rail expansion project which is expected to have a tremendous impact in the region in the coming years. Mr. Vicari made a presentation about the recently completed Gary Airport runway expansion project.