Politics & Government

Politics & Government
1:48 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Abortion drug bill moves to the House floor

State Rep. Sharon Negele (R-Attica), sponsor of a bill regulating the administration of RU-486 at Indiana abortion clinics. The bill passed out of committee Wednesday.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

A bill regulating abortion-inducing drugs administered at Indiana abortion clinics will advance to the House floor after passage in committee Wednesday.

When the bill passed the Senate, it required women receiving the abortion-inducing drug known as RU-486 to undergo an ultrasound prior to taking the drug.  Changes in the House committee Wednesday would require the ultrasound to be offered but allow women to turn it down. 

The bill now only forces changes at one Indiana location – a Planned Parenthood clinic in Lafayette. 

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Politics & Government
2:17 pm
Mon March 25, 2013

Optimism despite hurdles around criminal code overhaul

Bedford Republican Senator Brent Steele says he remains confident the legislature will pass a bill overhauling the state’s criminal code, despite Governor Mike Pence voicing concerns about the measure’s impact.

Gov. Pence’s main issue with the bill is its reduction of penalties for low-level drug offenders.  Those behind the criminal code reform effort want to focus more on rehabilitation.  But Pence says the state must remain tough on drugs and work to reduce crime, not penalties. 

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Politics & Government
4:05 pm
Tue March 19, 2013

Pence proposes income tax cut to mayors during statehouse visit

Mike Pence

Governor Mike Pence pitched his income tax cut proposal to mayors and local government leaders who visited the Statehouse Tuesday to promote their own priorities to the legislature. 

Governor Mike Pence’s proposed across-the-board 10 percent income tax cut hasn’t been backed by many in the General Assembly, even his fellow Republicans.  And its reception among the dozens of mayors and town leaders at the Statehouse Tuesday might also be described as lukewarm.  But Pence said his proposal will help more people than other tax cuts lawmakers are considering.

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Politics & Government
5:21 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Hoosier job growth starts off strong in 2013

Indiana’s private sector started the year off strong in January, adding jobs for the 19th consecutive month. The state’s labor force saw its greatest single-month expansion in nearly 20 years.

While the state’s private sector added 8,200 jobs in January, the unemployment rate climbed to its highest level in nearly a year, at 8.6 %.  But the state Department of Workforce Development said the rise in the unemployment rate is due to a huge influx of people to the labor force, which is made up of both people with jobs and those actively looking for work. 

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Politics & Government
2:16 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Zoeller, Lanane look to boost consumer protection for seniors

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller.

State lawmakers say legislation moving through the General Assembly will strengthen Indiana’s consumer protection efforts of senior citizens.  Both legislators and the Attorney General say they’ve found a gap in the law they hope the bill will address.

Last year, the number of consumer complaints of financial exploitation received by Attorney General Greg Zoeller’s office increased by more than 9% among Hoosiers age 55 and older.  And with the average age of Hoosiers on the rise, Zoeller says he’s expecting that number to continue to increase. 

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Politics & Government
2:19 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

General Assembly ready to make stage rules permanent

A year and a half after the Indiana State Fair stage collapse, state lawmakers are ready to enact permanent rules aimed at preventing future tragedies at outdoor events.

Last session, the General Assembly gave emergency rule-making power to the state Fire Marshal and Department of Homeland Security to develop temporary regulations for outdoor event and stage equipment. 

This session, the legislature is prepared to make those rules permanent. 

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Politics & Government
4:29 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Legislation promotes parental involvement in ‘Family Friendly’ schools

  State lawmakers want to help parents find out whether their child’s school is family friendly.  Legislation unanimously approved by a House committee Tuesday aims to increase parental involvement in education.

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Politics & Government
3:28 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Tea Party group supports Pence tax cut

Chase Downham

Tea Party group Americans for Prosperity is entering the debate in Indiana over Governor Mike Pence’s proposed ten percent income tax cut.  The organization announced it will air TV ads in support of the tax cut.

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Politics & Government
2:00 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Hoosier legislators wary of Medicaid expansion

Indiana Senate President Pro-Tem David Long talks with reporters.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

State lawmakers say discussion over how best to implement the Affordable Care Act will continue in the second half of this year’s legislative session.  But Republican leaders say uncertainty about the financial burden placed on the state by Medicaid expansion likely eliminates that option.

Fully expanding Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act would add around 400,000 more Hoosiers to the program.  For the first three years, the federal government will cover the entire cost.  After that, the cost would be split, with the federal government eventually contributing 90%. 

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Politics & Government
4:40 pm
Wed February 27, 2013

Pence and Donnelly weigh in on Sequestration

Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly said it appears sequestration cuts will go into effect before a deal is reached in Congress, but negotiations won’t stop with the Friday deadline.  Governor Mike Pence said the state is planning for the cuts.

The automatic federal spending cuts known as sequestration could include $32 million in education cuts in Indiana, 11,000 furloughed civilian workers from the state’s defense sector and cuts to money for child immunizations and domestic violence prevention. 

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