Mike Pence

2015 Session
6:40 pm
Thu April 2, 2015

Pence Signs RFRA "Fix"

Credit State of Indiana

Exactly one week after signing Indiana’s religious freedom bill into law, Governor Mike Pence Thursday signed a follow up bill meant to quell the firestorm of controversy that erupted over the  measure.

The follow up bill explicitly states that the recently-passed law known as RFRA can’t be used to deny  service to anyone on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

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Politics & Government
3:58 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Pence Promises Legislative Clarification for RFRA

Gov. Mike Pence gave a statement and took questions from the press on RFRA Tuesday in Indianapolis.
Credit Gretchen Frazee / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Governor Mike Pence says he wants to see legislation on his desk by the end of the week that clarifies the intent of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).

The governor says RFRA is meant to protect people’s religious liberties and does not allow businesses to deny services to gay and lesbian couples.

“No one should be harassed or mistreated because of who they are, who they love or what they believe,” Pence said.

He added that much of the criticism Indiana has been receiving is because of a misunderstanding about what the law actually does.

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Politics & Government
4:03 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Pence Signs Controversial RFRA Measure into Law

Gov. Mike Pence signed the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law Thursday. Opponents worry the measure could be used to sanction discrimination against LGBT Hoosiers and others.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Governor Mike Pence says concerns about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act come from a misunderstanding of the law, for which he at least partly blames the media.  Pence signed the controversial bill into law Thursday.

RFRA establishes a judicial test that courts will use to decide when the government can infringe on a person’s religious beliefs and practices. 

Many groups say they’re concerned it will be used to sanction discrimination, particularly against LGBT Hoosiers. 

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Politics & Government
4:41 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

Pence Push for Sales Tax Exemption Falls Flat

Gov. Mike Pence says he's still hoping lawmakers will consider some of his sales tax exemptions, some of which are considered too drastic by legislators of both parties.
Credit File

Governor Mike Pence says he still hopes to alter a major sales tax exemption for Hoosier businesses after House lawmakers stripped out a change to the exemption from the governor’s tax legislation.

One of the biggest pieces of Governor Pence’s tax simplification bill was the elimination of what’s called the “double direct” test for determining business sales tax exemptions.  The double direct test is a very specific metric for determining what items are exempt from the sales tax. 

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Education
3:50 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Legislature Trying to Fast-Track ISTEP+ Changes

The General Assembly is trying to speed up the process for approving changes to this spring’s ISTEP+ test.

Late last week, the State Board of Education and Department of Education approved a handful of recommendations to shrink this year’s version of the test, which students can start taking in less than two weeks. 

By law, those changes must get the okay from the General Assembly. In order to fast-track that process, two things happened in the House of Representatives Tuesday:

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Education
10:09 am
Tue February 17, 2015

Protesters Pack Statehouse in Support of Ritz

Indiana Superintendent Glenda Ritz appeared at a rally at the statehouse Monday. Protesters packed the building to express opposition to several bills that would reduce Ritz's power.
Credit Rachel Morello / StateImpact Indiana

Educators, parents and even a few kids out of school for the snow day packed the statehouse in Indianapolis Monday to show support for state superintendent Glenda Ritz.

Icy relations have become the norm among the state’s top education policymakers, including Ritz, Governor Mike Pence, the State Board of Education and the Department of Education.

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Education
5:33 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Education Officials Say ISTEP+ Will Go Forward at Current Length

Gov. Pence issued an executive order Monday calling for a reevaluation of the length of the ISTEP exam.
Credit Courtesy / State of Indiana

The Indiana Department of Education says it will proceed as planned to issue the ISTEP+ exam beginning Feb. 25, even after Gov. Mike Pence signed an executive order Monday to re-evaluate the test’s length.

Even though the test could change -- after the testing consultant hired through Pence’s executive order issues recommendations on how to shorten it -- the DOE says they are preparing school districts as if the test will not change.

Deputy state superintendent Danielle Shockey says Pence’s actions only add to the confusion in preparing for this year’s ISTEP.

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Politics & Government
5:44 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

Bosma, Long say Pence Tax Proposal Could Be Too Costly

Ind. House Speaker Brian Bosma says a change to a sales tax provision proposed by Gov. Pence could be too expensive at a time when the legislature is trying to invest in education.
Credit File

Republican legislative leaders say the potential price tag of one aspect of Governor Mike Pence’s tax simplification proposal could be too costly to support.

Among the many provisions of Pence’s bill is a change to a sales tax exemption for Hoosier businesses. 

Initial estimates by the governor’s administration put the cost around $35 million. But LSA, the legislature’s bipartisan research agency, calculates a revenue loss of anywhere between $130 million and $240 million per year. 

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Politics & Government
4:53 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Pence Scraps State-Run News Service

Gov. Mike Pence sent a memo to state agency heads Thursday announcing his cancellation of plans for the "Just IN" news service.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Governor Mike Pence says he’s canceling plans for a controversial state-run news service.

The announcement came in a memo Pence sent to state agency heads Thursday that he was killing the program, called “Just IN.”

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News
5:47 pm
Wed January 28, 2015

Pence Administration Responds to JustIN Criticism

Credit State of Indiana

Pence administration officials say they’ll work with press organizations to carefully evaluate the  proposed state news service before it’s unveiled to the public. 

Pence communications director Christy Denault says the original intent of the Just IN news service was  to serve as a clearinghouse, a “one-stop shop,” for press releases from all state agencies. She says the  current system, a state news calendar, didn’t display releases from nearly half of the state’s 90 agencies.  

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