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Community members and officials gathered at the annual Legislative breakfast Saturday morning, hosted by the Jasper Chamber of Commerce at the CTIM Building of the Vincennes  University Jasper Campus.

Now before any legislation reports took place the officials from the Command Post Team working on Avian Influenza issues in Dubois County, addressed the public to provide an overview of what has been their experience in the situation.

Director of Planning & Assessment for the Indiana Department of Homeland Security Joe Romero spoke regarding the challenges of the severe cold weather affecting the process of the bird depopulation method since the equipment used depends on water and high temperature so that the procedure is effective.

According to officials since the 16th of January there has been NO positive indication of birds infected by the illness.

Romero assures that the challenges were possible to overcome by the collaborative work between officials and farmers. He also recognized the community and local representatives and officials.

There were questions from the public on how local officials have done their part in helping with the Avian Influenza. Romero says that local agencies and officials have been responsive such as the volunteer firefighters who helped by taking water tankers out to support the depopulation operations and having retired fire chiefs that helped start the operations.

As the main event of the legislative breakfast took place District 63 State Representative Mike Braun of Jasper spoke on preparing for a long-term prospective to address unfinished plans such as infrastructure.

Braun says that it’s equally significant for local and city governments to be engaged if projects are to be carried out and encourages quick action in order to put road plans into place.

In his closing remarks District 74 State Representative Lloyd Arnold of Leavenworth elaborates on the importance of public input and expressing concerns that occur in the rural areas of Indiana.

State Senator Mark Messmer of Jasper as well as Braun and Arnold answered questions from the public and reminded the community that the next forum will be held on February 20th to continue their updates about current legislative issues.

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