Brandon Smith

IPBS Statehouse Reporter

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. 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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General News
8:21 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Indiana Senate chooses not to restore preschool pilot program to bill

Indiana Senate Republicans have rejected an attempt to revive a preschool pilot program that was eliminated in a Senate committee last week. 

The House overwhelmingly approved legislation creating a pilot program that would provide vouchers for one thousand low-income Hoosier children to attend preschool.  But the Senate Education Committee gutted the bill, replacing the pilot program with a study committee that will examine specific issues with pre-Kindergarten education.  South Bend Democratic Senator John Broden wants to add the pilot program back into the bill

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General News
12:02 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Pre-K voucher program stripped from bill

A pilot program aimed at providing pre-kindergarten educational opportunities for low-income Hoosier kids has been stripped out of a bill in a Senate committee. 

The program – a major initiative of Governor Mike Pence – was replaced with a mandated study of the issue.

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General News
1:06 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

IN Senate scales back welfare drug testing bill

A Senate committee has dramatically scaled back the scope of a bill creating a drug testing program for welfare recipients. 

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General News
7:37 am
Tue February 18, 2014

IN Senate approves HJR-3

Opponents of HJR-3 says ensuring the proposed constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage wouldn’t be on the ballot this fall was a huge victory. 

But they say the battle isn’t over yet.

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General News
10:42 am
Tue February 11, 2014

HJR-3 moves to full Senate for consideration

A Senate committee has approved HJR-3, the proposed constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. 

The debate surrounding the measure shifted during Monday’s hearing, focusing more on the restoration of the amendment’s controversial second sentence.

The House removed HJR-3’s second sentence, which bans civil unions, after concerns were raised it could prohibit domestic partnership benefits.  Proponents of the measure, including Governor Mike Pence, are calling on the Senate to reinsert that language. 

General News
1:02 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Governor declares energy emergency

Governor Mike Pence has declared an energy emergency in Indiana as the state faces a severe propane shortage. 

The state will provide more support for low-income Hoosiers facing increased energy prices:

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General News
6:16 am
Tue January 28, 2014

House votes in favor of Truitt HJR-3 amendment

A bipartisan group of House lawmakers has voted to remove a portion of HJR-3, the proposed constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. 

The change would also restart the ratification process.

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General News
11:56 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Poll indicates Hoosiers want to have their say about same-sex marriage ban

Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma says a recent poll commissioned by House and Senate Republicans clearly indicates Hoosiers want to have their say at the ballot box on the proposed amendment banning same sex marriage. 

The House and Senate GOP caucuses commissioned a phone survey of registered voters that took place last week asking Hoosiers for their view on the same sex marriage ban amendment known as HJR-3. 

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General News
8:29 am
Wed January 15, 2014

Pence outlines legislative agenda in second State of the State

In his second State of the State address, Governor Mike Pence thanked the House and Senate for beginning work quickly on finding the best way to meet his goal of phasing out the business personal property tax.

And he reminded legislators he‘s also seeking another income tax cut, in the form of increased personal and dependent deductions.

Pence reaffirmed his call for locally-written academic standards for Indiana schools, and for an expansion of preschool vouchers for low-income students.

The governor also signaled support for a constitutional ban on gay marriage.

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General News
6:30 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Vote on same-sex marriage amendment postponed

People on both sides of the debate over Indiana’s proposed same sex marriage ban amendment spoke passionately for hours in front of a packed House chamber yesterday. 

The amendment is making its first legislative stop in a House committee.

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