This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Monday, December 2, 2013


Last week Kids Corner/Unique Things moved from a small shop near the the City Office and Pub to much larger quarters next to the bakery. I was curious to see how well they would fill the new space.
 The new store looked fuller than I expected, though there were some places that were a bit empty. I suspect that in a few months the store will have a different look. It is the place to go to accessorize your young daughters or granddaughters.
 Empty space is not a problem for Jasper Junction, which is undergoing some big changes. The little cafe area is now gone, and there has been an attempt to open up the whole space more. Pricing has been simplified. There will only be one regularly scheduled half-off day, the first Thursday of every month.
There is a sign at the entrance pointing out that Jasper Junction exists to provide funds to CDC Resources. CDC Resources serves adults with developmental disabilities and it gets most of it funds through Medicaid. The state could provide the services that CDC and agencies like it provide, but I think it finds it cheaper to outsource the provision of those services to not-for-profit organizations like CDC. That way it can squeeze them in a way that is much harder when state employees are providing the services. When students with developmental disabilities leave high school, they can find it very difficult to get state funding to move over to CDC. They need to get something called the Medicaid waiver, and the waiting list for that is years long. The way the state deals with this situation would be considered a scandal if people paid attention, but it is out of sight and out of mind except for the people trapped in the queue.

Because state does not provide enough funding for agencies like CDC to provide the services that they are expected to provide, the agencies try to find ways to supplement state funding. Jasper Junction is an attempt by CDC to find a bit of extra money. And it also provides a very useful service to the community.
 The old Man Building is now closed.
 As is the old Furniture Hut. Both are available for rent if you are interested.
I like to visit thrift stores and occasionally I even buy something. One thing that puzzles me is why there are so few used electronics for sale. People are constantly upgrading computers. Yet they do not seem to appear that often in thrift stores. Is is because people would rather throw them away because do not know how to be sure that the hard drive is completely erased, or because they think they have no value? Or do thrift stores not want to sell them because they cannot be sure that the work properly? Even broken computers can usually be scavenged for parts. Or are new computers cheap enough so that people do not want to buy used equipment? What do you think?

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