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House Sends Budget Bill To Senate As Session's First Half Wraps

Rep. Todd Huston (R-Fishers) debates the budget bill with Rep. Vernon Smith (D-Gary).

Rep. Todd Huston (R-Fishers) debates the budget bill with Rep. Vernon Smith (D-Gary). (Brandon Smith/IPB News)

The Indiana House approved the budget bill Monday along party lines.

Republicans and Democrats argued over the two-year spending plan’s so-called “statement of priorities.”

Republican budget architect Rep. Todd Huston (R-Fishers) calls the House GOP’s proposed spending plan “financially responsible” while funding the caucus’s priorities. He says that includes a commitment to K-12 education and a continued focus on workforce development.

“We double the Workforce Ready grant, we double the Next Level employer trainings, we fund the career navigation and coaching system,” Huston says.

But Democrats say the GOP’s doesn’t prioritize the right items. Rep. Greg Porter (D-Indianapolis) says the budget bill does little to increase funding for anti-poverty programs and help for seniors.

“This budget, yet again, has neglected the human infrastructure of our state,” Porter says.

The budget projects to spend more than $34.5 billion over the next two years. The measure is now in the hands of the Senate Republican caucus, which will release its proposal in the coming weeks.

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