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Week At The Statehouse: Budget and Bullying

House and Senate leaders have one more week to work out a budget, and legislators passed measures strengthening antibullying and prescription medication laws.

house chambers

Photo: Emily Penguin (flickr)

The House of Representatives chambers sit empty in the Indiana Statehouse.

One of the last key pieces of information in budget negotiations was unveiled this week as Indiana’s new revenue forecast revealed a more positive outlook for the state. But legislative leaders say caution is still needed.

House and Senate fiscal leaders had talked for months about the importance of the April revenue forecast in determining the final budget picture and the fate of Governor Mike Pence’s 10 percent income tax cut.

The projections are strong – nearly $300 million better than the December forecast for the next two year.

Pence says the new numbers are proof that Indiana’s budget can include both strong increases for education and roads funding and his tax cut. But lawmakers downplayed the significance of the forecast and say the final budget will probably have around $500 million in a mix of tax cuts, likely ruling out Pence’s full ten percent cut.

The House sent legislation strengthening the state’s antibullying laws to the governor. The bill broadens the definition of bullying to include more than just physical acts and incorporates cyberbullying.

The Senate approved a measure that restricts Hoosiers from buying more than eight months worth of ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, common ingredients in cold and allergy medicine that are used to make meth. Previously, the state had only daily and monthly caps. The bill now heads to the governor’s desk.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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  • http://www.talkezy.com/ Anti-Bullying Help Campaign

    Great to hear that they’re also planning to include cyberbullying as part of the anti-bullying bill!

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