2021 Indiana General Assembly Report, Week 2
CAC staff attended and monitored a handful of hearings and coalition meetings this week. We’re following more than fifty bills with more legislation appearing through the public process as we speak. By the week’s end 1,000 separate pieces of legislation had been filed.
On Wednesday we testified in opposition to House Bill 1191, which was heard in the House Utilities Committee. Authored by Rep. Jim Pressel (R), HB 1191 is a one-way bill that merely protects the monopoly utilities' “right” to provide service and consumers and property owners “rights” to take service from the monopoly utility. Nothing in HB1191 protects private property owners' right to generate or procure their own energy or lease (or not lease) their land to third parties for energy generation. We were joined in opposition by environmental groups and the bill was held until next week, meaning the Committee took no action on the bill except to hear testimony. They will likely act on the bill at their next meeting which is unannounced at the time of this writing.
In fact, all legislative meetings for the week of January 18th have been canceled due to concerns for safety surrounding the events of the Presidential Inauguration and the January 6th U.S. Capitol insurrection. We anticipate the meetings originally scheduled for this week will be moved to next week.
Budget and revenue conversations continued to dominate the Statehouse hallways this week with Governor Holcomb’s floated budget proposal released Thursday. Throughout this year’s budget discussions, we will be watching healthcare initiatives for seniors like the state’s Community and Home Options to Institutional Care for the Elderly and Disabled (CHOICE) program which was proposed to be cut by $5 million; human services, transportation funding, and agency funding.
Items upcoming this week
- Despite all legislative meetings being canceled, the Governor’s State of the State Address is still scheduled for Tuesday 1/19 at 7pm. It will air live on PBS affiliates and other outlets throughout the State. Check your local listings or watch the livestream on the General Assembly website.
Kerwin Olson & Lindsay Haake