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Statehouse Internship Opportunities Announced

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The Indiana House of Representatives has announced full time internship opportunities for the upcoming legislative session.  College students interested in government can apply for internship programs in next year's Republican and Democratic caucuses.  House interns serve the entire duration of the legislative session, which next year will be from early
January to mid-March.  The application deadline is October 31st. 
It is a full-time internship, so the Statehouse website urges each student to work with their academic adviser if they are still in school to stay on a 4-year degree path. Most Indiana colleges and universities offer a full semester of academic credit to students who complete the legislative internship program.
When applying, interns choose one of four concentrations within the internship program: member services, communications, fiscal/policy and computer/technology.
Students interested need to apply before the October 31 deadline. For more detailed information and to apply online, visit www.in.gov/legislative/house_republicans/intern.html. The website provides many informative videos and additional information about each department to assist applicants....

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Police Car Procession Through Valparaiso Planned

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Nearly forty police K9 teams are in Valpo this week as the Valparaiso Police Department is hosting the North American Police Workdog Association fall workshop through this Friday {September 20]. Valparaiso Police Patrolman and K-9 officer Todd Kobitz says officers from around the Region, the state, and nearby states are in town and will be part of a huge procession through downtown Valparaiso this afternoon [Wednesday September 18].  The police cars from the various departments will be making their way to a free public demonstration scheduled to start at 5 pm on the football field on the west side of Benjamin Franklin Middle School on Campbell Street. Hear more of our interview with Officer Todd Kobitz here at our website at News Audio on Demand.
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Griffith Residents Concerned Over Truck Traffic

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Griffith residents who say they didn't get notified in advance about round-the-clock tanker truck traffic on Cline Avenue related to Enbridge pipeline tests expressed their concerns over noise and safety at Tuesday night's town council meeting. Town officials say the trucks are traveling to a Gary facility to transport millions of gallons of water that per federal regulations need to be emptied out of the company's tank farm on Avenue H and put back into the Great Lakes, into Lake Michigan. The company hopes to have the water moved by the end of the month. The town council said Enbridge offered in advance to give the town money to pay for road resurfacing that may be necessary. ...

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Lottery Game to Raise Awareness of Animal Adoptions

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INDIANAPOLIS - The Hoosier Lottery's new Lucky Dog Scratch-off encourages Hoosiers to "scratch a lucky dog."   In doing so, the Hoosier Lottery hopes to bring awareness to animal adoption opportunities and the importance of spay and neuter programs in communities across Indiana.
The new Lucky Dog scratch-off game features photos of ten adoptable dogs from Indiana animal shelters; three from the Humane Society of Indianapolis, three from the Humane Association of Clark County and four from the Allen County SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.)
The Lucky Dog Scratch-off featuring the adoptable Indiana pups is available at approximately 4,000 Hoosier Lottery retailers around the state. 
The Hoosier Lottery is partnering with more than 65 Indiana county Humane Societies and animal shelters to sponsor adoption events around the state beginning in September.  The adoption events will culminate in late October with Indiana's biggest adoption event ever.
The Hoosier Lottery will be providing Lucky Dog tickets to partner shelters to give to those who adopt animals throughout the fall, while supplies last.  In northwest Indiana, the Hoosier Lottery is partnering with the Humane Society Calumet Area, Jasper County Animal Shelter, Michiana Humane Society and SPCA, Newton County Animal Shelter and the Porter County Animal Shelter.
Each individual $2 ticket offers the chance to win cash prizes up to $10,000 and contains information directing players to log on to HoosierLottery.com/LuckyDog to learn more about animal adoption in northwest Indiana including how to donate winning and unscratched tickets to benefit local animal shelters. 
As a partner, the Humane Society Calumet Area was given a limited amount of scratch-off tickets to hand out to adopters during this time of the game. The adopters will be given a chance to win $10,000 from the Lucky Dog Scratch-off game. The Humane Society Calumet Area is located at 421 45th Street in Munster.
Each ticket will also include mention of the Lucky Dog of the Week picture contest on Hoosier Lottery's Facebook page which is open to all Hoosiers 18 and older.
Additional information about all the Lucky Dog initiatives, including a list of all partner shelters and specific events, will be available at hoosierlottery.com/lucky dog.
The Hoosier Lottery reminds all players to play responsibly. Must be 18 or older to play.  Gambling Addiction Referral Line: 800-994-8448.  
ABOUT THE HOOSIER LOTTERY: Hoosier Lottery distributions benefit every county throughout Indiana. Each fiscal year, the Hoosier Lottery contributes $30 million to Police and Firefighters' Pensions, and $30 million to the Teacher's Retirement Fund. The remainder of Lottery earnings are applied to reduce excise taxes by 50 percent for every Hoosier vehicle owner.
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Coats Blames Obama for Closing of Indiana Coal Plant

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Senator Dan Coats
WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) issued a statement regarding today’s announcement today by American Electric Power (AEP) that it will close the entire Tanners Creek coal power plant in Lawrenceburg, Indiana as a result of a series of costly Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations. AEP reported that 115 jobs will be affected by the closure.
“It’s ironic that the president gave a speech this week touting his economic policies when companies across the country are cutting jobs due to his administration’s unreasonable rules and regulations. The closure of the Tanners Creek power plant is another unfortunate casualty of the administration’s inflexible regulatory machine. This power plant has provided Hoosiers with good jobs and some of the most affordable, reliable electricity in the nation.  
“I have led bipartisan efforts to pass legislation that would have allowed many power plants additional time to install the equipment needed to comply with new regulations. I will continue to fight in the Senate to bring reason and common sense to this regulatory spree.
“This administration needs to practice what it preaches when it comes to job growth. The president cannot allow the out-of-control EPA to eliminate jobs and hit Hoosier families with higher electric bills while telling Americans that he is serious about growing the economy.”
Nearly 90 percent of Indiana’s energy is generated from coal, including power plants like Tanners Creek. All four generating units at Tanners Creek will be retired by mid-2015. AEP is one of the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of the country’s generating capacity....

Read more: Coats Blames Obama for Closing of Indiana Coal Plant

 

Update: Gary Homicide Victim Identified

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Gary Police are investigating a homicide that took place this morning, reported to be the 40th in the city this year. Gary Police Corp. Gabrielle King says officers were dispatched to the 15-hundred block of Delaware Street, just after 9:30am, and upon arrival, found a 39 year old man in the drivers seat of a black SUV with multiple gunshot wounds to his body. The Lake County Coroner's Office reports the deceased has been identified as Dewayne Young, of Gary, who was pronounced dead at the scene. Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact Gary Police and ask for Sgt. Dan Callahan. ...

Read more: Update: Gary Homicide Victim Identified

 

Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Indianapolis

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A Chicago-to-New York Delta Airlines flight made an emergency landing today in Indianapolis. The regional flight was diverted after the pilot reported steering problems. WISH-TV in Indianapolis is reporting the flight, with 41 aboard, landed safely earlier today at Indianapolis International Airport. ...

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IN House of Representatives Interships Available

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The Indiana House of Representatives has announced full time internship opportunities for the upcoming legislative session.  College students interested in government can apply for internship programs in next year's Republican and Democratic caucuses.  House interns serve the entire duration of the legislative session, which next year will be from early
January to mid-March.  The application deadline is October 31st. 
It is a full-time internship, so the Statehouse website urges each student to work with their academic adviser if they are still in school to stay on a 4-year degree path. Most Indiana colleges and universities offer a full semester of academic credit to students who complete the legislative internship program.
When applying, interns choose one of four concentrations within the internship program: member services, communications, fiscal/policy and computer/technology.
Students interested need to apply before the October 31 deadline. For more detailed information and to apply online, visit www.in.gov/legislative/house_republicans/intern.html. The website provides many informative videos and additional information about each department to assist applicants....

Read more: IN House of Representatives Interships Available

 

Lake County K9 Assists Gary PD to Catch Suspect

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Gary PD
A 20 year old man was apprehended by Gary Police Monday, with the help of a Lake County K-9. Gary Police report around 6pm, in the East Glen Park area, 41st Avenue and Pennsylvania Street, officers came across several subjects walking in the roadway and when they asked them to stop, the 20 year old fled and was seen throwing a handgun on the railroad tracks in the area, which officers retrieved. A K-9 was called in to assist, which tracked the man to an alley in the 39-hundred block of Delaware Street, where he was apprehended and taken to the hospital for injuries sustained by the K-9. The suspect, who had a warrant for his arrest from the City of Gary, faces charges of felon in possession of a firearm, for not having a valid gun permit and resisting arrest....

Read more: Lake County K9 Assists Gary PD to Catch Suspect

 

Man Found Dead in Vehicle, Shot Multiple Times

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Gary PD
Gary Police are investigating a homicide that took place this morning, reported to be the 40th in the city this year. Gary Police Corp. Gabrielle King says officers were dispatched to the 15-hundred block of Delaware Street, just after 9:30am, and upon arrival, found a 39 year old man in the drivers seat of a black SUV with multiple gunshot wounds to his body. Corp. King says the man was pronounced dead at the scene and his name is being withheld until notification of next of kin. Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact Gary Police and ask for Sgt. Dan Callahan....

Read more: Man Found Dead in Vehicle, Shot Multiple Times

 

Police Warn of Telephone/Computer Scam

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michigan city police
The Michigan City Police have received complaints regarding an ongoing scam involving fraud suspects representing themselves as "Microsoft" technical support employees.
Seniors and less savvy computer owners believe that their computers are regulated or taken care of by "Microsoft".
These scammers convince their "customers" to spend several hundred dollars as part of the fraud.
The current phone scam employs similar tricks to that of a fake antivirus software scam circulating the internet, also known as "scareware," which tricks users by displaying a fake virus attack.
In Michigan City a live phone version of the scam involves suspects who call and impersonate help desk engineers from legitimate software companies on their behalf.
 The scammers then pretend to warn users their PCs could be infected with malware and offer a free security check. The suspects will "cold call" their victims and create a sense of urgency that a computer fix is critical.
In reality, the scammers trick victims into allowing them to remotely access the user's computer and download malware. The scammers then ask for a credit card payment from the user to continue the "repair," which usually involves downloading fake security software to delete the malware the scammer just secretly installed.
This scam has mainly affected seniors and those new to computing who believe they are actually speaking to a Microsoft representative. Some calls can last hours and will always involve a "Green Dot" credit card payment for "services." Most of the suspects in this scam are located overseas even though caller ID information may display common U.S. phone numbers. Take the time to warn those less computer savvy family and friends about this scam.
Microsoft will NEVER initiate UNSOLICITED phone calls or emails regarding computer repair!
                        
If you are experiencing this type of scam or any other suspicions of being scammed, contact Sgt. Chris Yagelski @ 873-1461 Ext. #333 0r This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ...'; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text87354 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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Pratt Paper Invests Millions in new Facility in Valparaiso

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Anthony Pratt- Mayor Costas-Gary Bryd
Pratt Paper (Indiana), LLC, d/b/a Pratt Industries, a recycled paper and packaging company, announced plans today to locate a paper mill here, creating up to 137 new jobs by 2018.
The Conyers, Ga.-headquartered company will invest $260 million to construct a new 100 percent recycled paper facility adjacent to its existing box-making plant in Valparaiso. The project, which will be completed by July 2015, will occupy a new 250,000 square-foot building on a 50-acre site. It will include a wastewater pre-treatment facility and road improvements. When it reaches its full capacity, the new facility will produce an increased 360,000 tons of recycled paper each year.
Pratt, which currently employs more than 311 associates in Valparaiso and more than 4,000 across North America, plans to begin hiring paper machine operators, equipment operators, electrical and instrumentation technicians, shipping representatives, waste yard personnel, shift supervisors and maintenance associates late next year.
“This new facility will allow us to better service the needs of our expanding customer base not only in the Midwest, but throughout the United States," said Anthony Pratt, owner and chairman of Pratt. "And Indiana is a perfect fit for us. We've been a part of the business community here for many years now and we know there is a skilled, reliable workforce available to us. It's also gratifying to work with such dedicated public officials who realize the importance of attracting well-paying manufacturing jobs to the state.”
Founded in 1987, Pratt is the world’s largest privately held company to produce all of its paper and packaging from 100 percent recycled products, saving the equivalent of more than 50,000 trees each day. The company produces 1.15 million tons of recycled paper annually, most of which is used to produce packaging for various market sectors including industrial, food and beverage, electronics, pharmaceuticals and telecommunications.
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Pratt Paper (Indiana), LLC up to $1.2 million in conditional tax credits and up to $200,000 in training grants based on the company’s job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority will support the project through its Deal Closing Fund. NIPSCO has also offered the company an estimated $15 million in additional energy and infrastructure incentives as part of its continued efforts to support local economic development.
The City of Valparaiso offered tax abatement and tax increment financing, as well as conduit financing through $200 million in industrial revenue bonds for the recycling facility and equipment.
“Pratt's decision to build an expansive paper recycling plant is, we believe, the single largest private taxpaying investment in the history of the city of Valparaiso, and brings profound benefits to our community. This $260M investment will create 104 permanent jobs and hundreds more during construction. Pratt's state of the art green recycling technology will help conserve America's forests and landfills. Finally, this level of investment will have positive residual benefits that will continue to expand our regional economy. It has been a real pleasure working alongside Pratt executives to pave the way for this expansion and it is clear to us why they have become the world's largest privately-held 100% recycled paper and packaging company.”

About Pratt Industries:

Pratt Industries is one of America's largest Corrugated Packaging Companies and the world’s largest, privately-held 100% recycled paper and packaging company, with more than 4,000 highly-skilled, green-collar employees dedicated to the environment and sustainability. Pratt was founded in the USA some 25 years ago and, since then, has shown dramatic growth with sophisticated manufacturing facilities in more than 20 states.
(pictured in photo (L-R) Anthony Pratt, Global Chairman Pratt/Visy Industries, Mayor Jon Costas, Eric Doder,President Indiana Economic Development Corp. at Valparaiso City Hall on Tuesday, Sept.17th, 2013.  Photo courtesy Radio One Communications)



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Lake Michigan Shipwreck Approved as Nature Preserve

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A one-hundred acre ship wreck area, six-hundred feet offshore of Indiana Dunes State Park, was given the status of nature preserve today after final approval was given by the Indiana Natural Resource Commission. The J.D. Marshall Nature Preserve in Porter County will now be the first underwater preserve ever in Indiana. The ship sank on June 11th, 1911 and was discovered in 1979. A dedication ceremony has been scheduled to take place at the end of the month at Indiana State Park Park. ...

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News Audio on Demand Interview: West Nile Virus

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We have a new interview online today at News Audio on Demand featuring Indiana State Department of Health Senior Medical Entomologist Bryan Price talking about West Nile virus and how Hoosiers can protect themselves.  We asked him about what effect, if any, the recent dry weather has had on mosquitoes and the virus, and other questions relating to recent virus activity data in the Region and the state.
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Two Human Cases of West Nile in the Region

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There are five human cases of mosquito-transmitted West Nile virus in Indiana, and two of them are here in the Region. According to the latest data available from the state department of health, there are two human cases of West Nile virus in Porter County; the others are in St. Joseph County and downstate in Floyd and Ripley Counties. Here in the Region, the state says six mosquito pools have tested positive for the disease in Lake County, two in Porter, one each in Newton and Starke and four in Pulaski County. Just across the state line, Cook County health officials are reporting the first West Nile virus death in suburban Cook County this year -- a 67-year-old Cicero man suffering from multiple underlying health conditions who died recently after contracting the virus.
Indiana State health officials recommend the following preventative measures:
·         Avoid places where mosquitoes are biting;
·         Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaradin or oil of lemon eucalyptus to clothes and exposed skin;
·         Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of the home; and,
·         When possible, wear pants and long sleeves, especially if walking in wooded or marshy areas.
West Nile virus can cause West Nile fever, a mild form of the illness, which can include fever, headache, body aches, swollen lymph glands or a rash. Some individuals will develop a more severe form of the disease with encephalitis or meningitis and other severe syndromes, including flaccid muscle paralysis.
To reduce potential mosquito breeding grounds:
·         Discard old tires, tin cans, ceramic pots or other containers that can hold water;
·         Repair failed septic systems;
·         Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers left outdoors;
·         Keep grass cut short and shrubbery trimmed;
·         Clean clogged roof gutters, particularly if leaves tend to plug up the drains;
·         Frequently replace the water in pet bowls;
·         Flush ornamental fountains and birdbaths periodically; and,
.         Aerate ornamental pools, or stock them with predatory fish.
State health officials say individuals who think they may have West Nile virus should see their health care provider. 
Link to state West Nile virus data map: http://gis.in.gov/apps/ISDH/Arbo/...

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Indiana Releases 2012 Medical Errors Report

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Reports of stage three or four pressure ulcers acquired after admission decreased from 41 in 2011 to 30 in 2012, according to the 2012 Medical Errors Report, released today by the Indiana State Department of Health. Pressure ulcers, also known as bed sores, have been the most reported incident six of the seven years the report has been compiled, including in 2012, and average approximately 30 incidents a year.
As a result of the 2012 meningitis outbreak which was linked to a compounding pharmacy, incidents of death or serious disability associated with contaminated drugs showed a significant increase in the report. Seven of these incidents were reported in 2012, all occurring in an ambulatory surgery center.
“Medical errors are serious and preventable,” said State Health Commissioner William VanNess II, M.D. “I hope this report serves as a call to action to health care providers around the state to be even more vigilant in their attention to detail when caring for patients.”
The annual report is based on the National Quality Forum’s 28 Serious Adverse Events. A total of 289 hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, abortion clinics, and birthing centers were surveyed.
A total of 100 incidents were reported in 2012, the same number reported in 2011. The most reported incidents in 2012 were:
·       30 stage three or four pressure ulcers acquired after admission to the hospital
·       19 incidents of a foreign object retained in a patient after surgery
·       15 surgeries performed on the wrong body part
·       14 falls resulting in a death or serious disability 
In 2006, Indiana became the second state to adopt the National Quality Forum’s reporting standards. The reporting standards are not intended as a comprehensive study of medical errors, but rather as representing a broad overview of health care issues. Prevention of medical errors generally requires a system-based approach. By focusing on a few fundamental prevention activities and an organized prevention system, errors can be prevented.
The 2012 Medical Errors Report may be found on the Indiana State Department of Health website at www.StateHealth.in.gov
[Indiana State Department of Health]...

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No Word on Cause of Mill Fire

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Burns Harbor Fire Chief Bill Arney, Firefighter/EMT McCune on the scene of the fire at ArcelorMittal
No word at this time on what caused a fire to break out at the ArcelorMittal Burns Harbor plant Sunday afternoon. Clean up was continuing on Monday. Porter Fire Chief Lewis Craig Sr. tells the Region News Team they were called out at 2:45 pm and were cleared just after 4:30 pm, and that the fire was confined to the car dumper. Multiple agencies, including Porter, Burns Harbor and Chesterton, responded.  [Photo/Burns Harbor FD]
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Governor Directs Flags to Half-Staff for DC Victims

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Indiana Governor Mike Pence is directing flags at state facilities statewide to be flown at half-staff beginning Tuesday, September 17 in honor of the victims of yesterday's shooting at the Washington Navy Yard.  Flags should remain at half-staff until sunset Friday, September 20.
Governor Pence also asks businesses and residents across the state to lower their flags to half-staff to honor victims of the tragedy. 
President Barack Obama issued a proclamation yesterday requiring flags to be flown at half-staff "on all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions until sunset, September 20, 2013."...

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VU Students Want to Ban UV Indoor Tans for Teens

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Illinois has a new teen tan ban taking effect the first of the year... here in Indiana, a couple of Region college students want to see Indiana lawmakers take similar action. The Illinois law will prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from using indoor u-v equipment, like tanning booths and sun lamps. Some students enrolled at V-U, Valparaiso University, testified Monday before a legislative panel in Indianapolis that they would like to see the Hoosier state also prohibit the use of tanning beds for those under 18.  The Indiana Health Finance Commission took testimony last month from dermatologists encouraging lawmakers to pass a law that would ban minors from using tanning beds.
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Westfield Southlake Sold to Investment Firm

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Australia's Westfield Group says it has sold Southlake Mall in Hobart and six other malls to a global investment firm in a one-point-six billion dollar deal. Along with Southlake, Connecticut-based Starwood Capital Group is purchasing malls in Ohio, Washington state and California. Southlake Mall opened in the 1970s. Westfield bought Southlake from Richard E. Jacobs Group in 2002.
Westfield Group [ASX: WDC]  Co-CEO Mr. Peter Lowy said “Today’s [Monday's] announcement continues the implementation of our strategic plan which positions WDC to generate greater shareholder value.”
“We are focused on redeploying our capital into superior retail destinations in major cities through divesting non-core assets and introducing joint venture partners into our high quality portfolio of assets.”
Starwood will own and manage the majority interest in the centers with Westfield retaining a 10 percent common equity interest.
The transactions’ value of $1.64 billion is $120 million below the book value of the assets at 31 December 2012 and in line with the book values at 30 June 2013....

Read more: Westfield Southlake Sold to Investment Firm

   

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