Governor Mike Pence was able to declare almost total victory Thursday in the wake of the 2015 session despite early skepticism from the General Assembly for much of his agenda.
There were several items on the governor’s agenda that lawmakers were at least hesitant to fully support. That includes a significant boost to charter school funding, dollars for next year’s state Bicentennial celebration, a major investment in Pence’s Regional Cities Initiative, along with the proposed balanced budget amendment to the state constitution.
The Indiana Department of Transportation has new leadership after Commissioner Karl Browning abruptly resigned Wednesday. Gov. Mike Pence won’t say why the longtime official is leaving.
Karl Browning has led INDOT since 2013, and previously served as Commissioner from 2006 to 2009. He submitted his resignation via email to the governor Wednesday morning, saying he was proud of his accomplishments but that it was “time to move on.”
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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.