2016 Session

Lee Coursey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/leeco/

As if there aren’t enough orange construction barrels on Indiana roads, drivers should brace for more.

Repairing roads was the priority this year when state lawmakers voted to return local income tax dollars to cities, towns and counties across the state.

How The Cash Can Be Spent

Seventy-five percent of the money must be spent on roads.

Lawmakers allowed local governments to spend the remaining quarter of the money they’re getting back on a non-road project or to put it away for future use.

Courtesy Crawfordsville Mayor's Office

It appears the money is about to start flowing in to fund the improvements Crawfordsville touted to win one of last year’s Stellar Communities designations.

But there are still some kinks to work out, like: don’t you have to own land before you can build on it?

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we get an update on the city’s bank account and its construction progress from Todd Barton.

Jim Grey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/mobilene/

Abortion remains as controversial as ever, but a bill passed this year in Indiana, which bans abortions based on race, sex, and disability and prohibits the selling of fetal tissue, has garnered an especially harsh response.

Thomas Hawk / https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk/

Indiana judges will no longer be able to reduce sentences for serious heroin or meth dealers.  The General Assembly made this change in the law this past session -- but some lawmakers say the change begins to unravel the recent overhaul of Indiana’s criminal code.

Pence Vetoes Private College Police Records Bill

Mar 24, 2016
Karin Beil / https://www.flickr.com/photos/kbeil/6807532616

Governor Mike Pence Thursday vetoed a bill aimed at requiring more transparency from private university police departments, but which Pence says does the opposite.

The bill would have declared private university police departments public agencies, but at the same time would only require them to disclose records about people they arrest or put in jail.

Governor Pence said in a statement that limiting access to private university police records is a disservice to the public, so he vetoed the bill.

Brandon Smith / IPBS

Registration fees at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles will decrease for more than two million Hoosiers next year as a result of legislation Gov. Mike Pence signed into law Thursday.

Pence says his administration has been working for years to correct errors and problems at the BMV.  Those issues have generated lawsuit settlements and overcharge repayments that exceed $100 million. 

Pence says a huge step forward in solving those problems is legislation that streamlines the agency’s fee and registration system.

City of Lafayette

A law signed by Governor Pence this week allows police greater flexibility in patrolling apartment complexes. Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski has a few on his list he’d like to see watched more closely, so today on Ask The Mayor, we’ll ask if the new law addresses a specific concern in his city as it tried to bring down some worrisome crime statistics.

Alex E. Proimos / https://www.flickr.com/photos/proimos/

Gov. Mike Pence says he’s still considering whether to sign a bill that bars women from having abortions solely because of a fetus’ potential disability.  Doctors have been reaching out to Pence, urging him to veto the measure.

Pro-life groups say the legislation prevents discrimination against Hoosiers with disabilities.  Some doctors, including members of the Catholic Medical Guilds of Indiana, say women will be spared from taking a life. 

Indiana Economic Development Corporation / http://indianaregionalcities.com/

Gov. Mike Pence Thursday signed into law a bill that guarantees full funding for all three winners of the Regional Cities Initiative, a program aimed at generating economic development cooperation across county and city lines.  And Pence says the legislation can benefit towns and cities beyond those regions.

The three Regional Cities winners – northeast, north central and southwest Indiana – cover 18 counties.  But Pence says the program has spurred work in other parts of the state, including four regions not awarded funding.

Brandon Smith / IPBS

Gov. Mike Pence Wednesday signed two bills into law that give state and local governments an influx of about $1 billion in road funding over the next two years after. 

Most of the legislation’s money is short-term or one-time dollars, and much of the local road funding comes from a one-time distribution of local income tax reserves.  The state’s portion will come from the state budget surplus. 

But Pence says a portion of the bills that redirects some of the state sales tax on gasoline will be more than a short-term answer.

Pages