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Senator Brian Buchanan (R-Monticello, District 7)

Indiana General Assembly

Pro-Consumer Voting Percentages

& Campaign Contributions

 2018   100%   n/a     Cumulative:   46%     
 2019   39%   n/a       

 

CAC considers that 80% is a passing grade for the legislators, meaning that if their Pro-Consumer Voting Percentage is 80% or above, they are working to protect consumers in the Indiana Statehouse. If their percentage is below 80%, they are not working to protect consumers.

The cumulative voting record percentage represents voting records from the last 10 years.

Campaign contribution information comes from followthemoney.org, and includes money taken from the Energy and Natural Resources industries, including: utilities, coal, mining, oil, natural gas, steel, and environmental services & equipment.

The campaign contributions represent money taken in the previous 11 years.

 

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Senator Brian Buchanan (R-Monticello, District 7)

 

2019 Campaign Contributions: n/a

2009 - 2019

 

2019 Pro-Consumer Voting Percentage: 39%

For bill details, visit our 2019 Indiana General Assembly Bill Watch List.

 

SB4: Water and wastewater utilities and runoff

Status: Signed into law by Gov. Holcomb

Requires the Indiana Finance Authority to study the water and wastewater utilities across Indiana to assess the water infrastructure and needs across the state. Requires each utility to perform an annual audit of their water systems to identify water losses and begin reigning in waste. Urges the Indiana General Assembly to assign an appropriate interim study committee to study issues regarding water systems across Indiana.

Committee Votes on SB4: none  

Senate Floor Votes on SB4: 2 votes, both Pro-Consumer  

 

SB105: Redistricting standards

Status: Died in the House Elections and Apportionment Committee

SB105 is a good bill, but it only deals with one element of redistricting reform, which is the criteria used to draw the district maps. It does not address who is drawing the maps, but rather leaves the state legislators in charge of drawing their own districts. Furthermore, the criteria in the bill does not include language regarding incumbent candidates or party affiliation.

Committee Votes on SB105: none  

Senate Floor Votes on SB105: 3 votes; 1 Pro-Consumer, 2 Anti-Consumer 

 

SB442: Underground storage of carbon dioxide

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

SB442 grants eminent domain to private corporations to force Hoosier property owners to allow dangerous carbon dioxide waste captured from dirty manufacturing facilities, like ammonia plants and coal-fired power plants, to be stored long-term underneath their properties without their consent. Additionally, SB442 puts Hoosiers on the hook for the long-term costs and liabilities associated with any problems which can occur as a result of storing carbon dioxide waste underground.

SB442 is being pushed by a privately-owned corporation known as Wabash Valley Resources. They are claiming it is a climate change mitigation strategy, but the best way to mitigate climate change is not to produce carbon dioxide in the first place. This is clearly another huge science experiment for which another private corporation wants to force Indiana taxpayers to assume liability.

Committee Votes on SB442: none   

Senate Floor Votes on SB442: 2 votes; 1 Pro-Consumer, 1 Anti-Consumer 

 

SB471: Offenses involving critical infrastructure

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

SB471 threatens the Constitutional Rights of all Hoosiers, including Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Assembly, and Freedom of Association. It will impose high criminal punishment for offenses involving “critical infrastructure facilities,” which it defines as places such as power plants, pipelines, refineries, and dams, among many others. This legislation elevates the misdemeanor of trespass to a FELONY offense, punishable with up to 2½ years in prison and a $10,000 fine. If property damage occurs, the offense is punishable by up to six years and a $10,000 fine. The bill goes even further to make entire groups of people collectively liable for the actions of one individual. Any organization that simply verbalizes support for an individual, an organization, or an action, can be found guilty of an offense under this legislation, and could be fined up to $100,000. SB471 is riddled with ambiguity and will have an enormous chilling effect on the Constitutional Rights of Hoosiers.

Committee Votes on SB471: none  

Senate Floor Votes on SB471: 2 votes,  both Anti-Consumer 

 

SB472: Utility rates and acquisitions

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb.

SB472 was originally an attempt to modify and clarify regulatory laws around the acquisition of municipally owned water and wastewater utilities by larger investor-owned water utilities. This bill is an attempt to address the heart of the water & wastewater issues facing residents in Lake Station, IN, and Charlestown, IN.

Committee Votes on SB472: none  

Senate Floor Votes on SB472: 2 votes; 1 Pro-Consumer, 1 Anti-Consumer 

 

SB613: Consumer credit (Payday lending)

Status: Died in the House

SB613 would create new payday installment loans of up to $1,800 in addition to the current payday products Indiana already offers. Plus, with these loans, lenders could add on fun stuff like credit insurance to make them even more expensive. CAC supports the lead taken by The Indiana Institute for Working Families in fighting to stop the passage of this bill.

Committee Votes on SB613: none  

Senate Floor Votes on SB613: 2 votes,  both Anti-Consumer

 

HB1266: Sediment and erosion control in construction

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

Prohibits a community from requiring erosion and sediment control measures that are more stringent than those required by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM). HB1266 removes a measure of local control that communities have over construction projects within their communities.

Committee Votes on HB1266: none  

Senate Floor Votes on HB1266: 1 vote,  Anti-Consumer 

 

HB1278: Environmental matters

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

Prohibits a community from requiring erosion and sediment control measures that are more stringent than those required by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM). HB1266 removes a measure of local control that communities have over construction projects within their communities.

Committee Votes on HB1278: none  

Senate Floor Votes on HB1278: 3 votes; 2 Pro-Consumer, 1 Anti-Consumer

 

HB1331: Homeowners associations and solar power

Status: Died in Conference Committee

Prohibits homeowners associations (HOAs) from prohibiting homeowners within the association from installing solar systems on their homes; imposing unreasonable limitations on the owner's ability to install or use a solar energy system; and requiring the removal of a solar energy system that has been installed. Provides, however, that a homeowners association may require preapproval of the location of a solar energy system and of the manner in which the solar energy system is installed. Applies only to rules, covenants, declarations of restrictions, and other governing documents adopted or amended by a homeowners association after June 30, 2019.

Committee Votes on HB1331: none  

Senate Floor Votes on HB1331: 1 vote, Pro-Consumer 

 

HB1406: Water infrastructure assistance fund and program

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

HB1406 is a response to a very real clean water crisis that is growing across Indiana. Across the country and across our state, water delivery infrastructure is crumbling. It has not been properly maintained since it was originally installed. In many cases, the water delivery infrastructure has gone over 100 years without any real maintenance. HB1406 is designed to allow the Indiana Finance Authority (IFA) to have access to money from the State of Indiana to be able to create and manage loans for these small utilities to be able to make the necessary upgrades to their systems, while simultaneously allowing them to phase in the necessary rate increases over time in order to pay the loans back. The goal is to ensure that customers of these small utilities have access to clean water, while also preventing them from getting a jolting rate shock on their water and wastewater bills all at once.

Committee Votes on HB1406: none  

Senate Floor Votes on HB1406: 1 vote, Pro-Consumer  

 

HB1470: Utility transmission improvements and costs

Status: Signed into law by Governor Holcomb

HB1470 is a clear attempt by Indiana’s monopoly utilities to usurp the regulatory process so they can raise your rates as much as they want, whenever they want. HB1470 amends the controversial Senate Enrolled Act 560 (SEA560, 2013), which gave Indiana’s electric and natural gas utilities a tracker to raise your rates virtually automatically for the costs related to investments in transmission and distribution infrastructure. This tracker is commonly referred to as the TDSIC (Transmission, Distribution, and Storage Improvement Charge).

HB1470 will effectively guarantee that captive Hoosier gas and electric customers will face ENORMOUS increases in their monthly utility bills. HB1470 mandates that the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approve the TDSIC tracker even if the utilities have no idea what they will spend your money on. HB1470 mandates that the IURC allow the utilities to force you to pay for smart meters by including the cost of smart meters in the TDSIC tracker.

Committee Votes on HB1470: none  

Senate Floor Votes on HB1470: 4 votes,  all Anti-Consumer 

 

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Senator Brian Buchanan (R-Monticello, District 7)

 

2018 Campaign Contributions: n/a

2008 - 2018

 

2018 Pro-Consumer Voting Percentage: 100%

For bill details, visit our 2018 Indiana General Assembly Bill Watch List.

 

SB11: Eligibility for supplemental nutrition assistance

Status: Died in the House Family, Children and Human Affairs, but language was amended into HB1317 (Health Matters), which was signed into law by the Governor.

SB11 opts Indiana out of the federal law prohibiting people convicted of certain drug offenses from receiving SNAP assistance. However, if the people who qualify for this violate any terms of their probation, parole, community corrections, or reentry court program, they will be ineligible for SNAP.

Senate Floor Votes on SB11: N/A

 

SB207: Homeowners associations and solar power

Status: Died in the House Judiciary Committee.

SB207 would have set solar-friendly guidelines in place for Homeowners Associations in crafting their covenants. It would restrict HOAs from prohibiting residents from installing solar panels. The bill was not retroactive, meaning it would not affect existing HOA covenants.

Senate Floor Votes on SB207: N/A

 

SB326: Redistricting standards

Status: Died in the House Elections & Apportionment Committee.

SB326 was a good start toward redistricting reform in Indiana. It would have created a set of standards that redistricting proposals would have to meet, including important criteria like compactness and keeping communities of interest - like towns and neighborhoods - in the same district whenever possible.

SB326 was a step in the right direction, but it didn't go far enough. SB326 addressed HOW the districts are drawn, but it needed to be strengthened to create an independent, bi-partisan redistricting commission in order to address WHO is drawing the district maps and put an end to political gerrymandering in Indiana.

Senate Floor Votes on SB326: N/A

 

SB361: Water infrastructure task force

Status: Died in the House Utilities, Energy and Telecommunications Committee.

SB361 would have established a water infrastructure task force to study drinking water systems and wastewater management systems and to develop a long term plan for addressing drinking water and wastewater needs in Indiana.

Vote on SB361: N/A

 

SB362: Regulation of water and wastewater systems

Status: Signed into law by Gov. Holcomb.

Provides that a public utility, conservancy district, or regional water or sewage district that is organized as a legal entity after June 30, 2018 to provide water or wastewater service to the public is subject to the jurisdiction of the Indiana utility regulatory commission for the period of 10 years beginning on the day on which it is organized as a legal entity.

Senate Floor Votes on SB362: 2 votes; both Pro-Consumer

 

SB411: Distressed Utilities

Status: Signed into law by Gov. Holcomb.

The bill undercuts the regulatory process in any case involving the acquisition of a distressed water or wastewater utility which is placed before the Commission for approval. The bill would not only eliminate the ability of interested stakeholders to challenge, or even review, the sale price of the distressed utility. It would effectively turn the Commission into a rubber stamp, forcing the Commission to accept the sale price, no questions asked. This is a bridge too far which would make the Commission proceedings little more than a ministerial process, and remove any and all ability or authority the Commission may have in protecting consumers during these acquisition proceedings.

Senate Floor Votes on SB411: N/A

 

HB1267: Water infrastructure task force 

Status: Signed into law by Gov. Holcomb.

Establishes a water infrastructure task force to study Indiana’s drinking water systems, wastewater management systems, and storm water management systems. This bill charges the task force with the responsibility of developing a long term plan for addressing drinking water, wastewater, and storm water management needs in Indiana. Requires the task force to submit a report containing certain recommendations to the general assembly and the governor not later than December 1, 2018.

Vote on HB1267:

Committee Votes on HB1267: 1 vote, Pro-Consumer

Senate Floor Votes on HB1267: 1 vote, Pro-Consumer

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