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Week In Review: Budget Rules Legislative Discussions

Mike Pence

Photo: WTIU

Governor Mike Pence delivers his first State of the State address on Jan. 22, 2013.

Governor Mike Pence took center stage this week, using his State of the State address to present his budget proposal to Hoosiers.  But legislative leaders still are not sold on several parts of Pence’s plan.

Pence defended his proposed 10-percent income tax cut in his speech, saying at a time when the federal government has just raised taxes, his cut will put a half billion dollars into the Hoosier economy and help support small businesses and family farms.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are still uncertain about the tax reduction, noting there may be better ways to spend state dollars, including a greater influx of funding to schools and roads.

A Senate committee unanimously approved a bill aimed at boosting the state’s gaming industry by offering tax breaks, allowing live dealer tables at racetrack casinos and putting mobile gambling devices in off track betting sites. Still, Senate President Pro Tem David Long said he’s unsure the bill will go any further. Its next stop is the Senate Appropriations committee.

And the House passed legislation regulating outdoor event equipment.  A response to the 2011 State Fair stage collapse, the bill extends temporary rules developed by the State Fire Marshal and Department of Homeland Security this past summer.

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