Brandt Hershman

City of Frankfort

On what seems like an increasingly frequent basis, Frankfort Mayor Chris McBarnes’ name is mentioned for other positions than the one he currently holds.

McBarnes declined to run in the special election for the Fourth Congressional District seat in 2016 when Todd Rokita ran for governor, couldn’t find much support from GOP leaders and then scampered back to his current job.

He wouldn’t enter the race to succeed Rokita as the congressman now seeks Joe Donnelly’s Senate seat.

Courtesy Indiana Senate Republicans

A polarizing figure in the Indiana Senate will step down after the new year.

Republican Brandt Hershman (R-Buck Creek) will resign just before the legislative session gets underway, to follow his wife to Washington, D.C., where both are taking new jobs.

Senate Budget Architect Kenley To Retire This Fall

Jul 5, 2017

Indiana State Sen. Luke Kenley (R-Noblesville), one of the most influential lawmakers at the Statehouse, will retire later this year after 25 years in office. His service includes the last nine sessions as the chamber’s budget architect, chairing the Appropriations Committee.

Kenley was re-elected to another four-year term just last November. But he says he told people on the campaign trail he had two final goals: passing another balanced budget and creating a long term road funding plan.

City of West Lafayette

As legislation season ends and a prolonged construction season begins in West Lafayette, the city faces challenges from multiple sides.

On one side is a bill which would have given cell phone companies carte blanche to put small cell towers almost anywhere they could find a utility hookup.

On the other are small business owners who say the city and Purdue University may benefit from State Street’s overhaul, but they’re being imperiled.

Philip Brookes / https://www.flickr.com/photos/philipbrookes/

The cities of West Lafayette, Crawfordsville and Lafayette are among those in Indiana which have begun legislating to head off the effects of a bill giving sweeping new rights to cell phone companies.

The law, which Gov. Eric Holcomb has until Thursday to sign, allows so-called micro cell phone towers to be erected so cell phone signal strength doesn't wane as often.

West Lafayette Development Director Erik Carlson told his city's Board of Public Works Saturday that the technology is valuable, but that it has its share of problems.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton has found himself up against some powerful competition recently.

He appears to have prevailed in a battle against the world’s largest company, Wal-Mart, in a battle over a road near the big box chain’s Crawfordsville location.

But he may also be up against several cell phone companies – and the lawmakers they appear to be bankrolling.

This week on WBAA’s Ask the Mayor, we quiz Mayor Barton about what he’s learned from his recent skirmishes. 

Courtesy Indiana Senate Republicans

WBAA's guest on The Wake-Up Call is Republican State Senator Brandt Hershman, of Buck Creek, Tippecanoe County.

We've invited him to discuss his proposal for Hoosiers to vote next year, and choose whether to change the Indiana Constitution and permanently require future state legislators to adopt a balanced budget. 

Local officials say their piece of the road funding pie needs to be a lot bigger after a significant decrease in the Senate plan. The Senate proposal cut local funding by more than two-thirds from the House version.

And while local officials obviously aren’t happy with the funding decrease in the Senate roads bill, there are other provisions they’d also like to see changed.

Net Metering Bill Passes Senate

Feb 27, 2017

Senate Bill 309, a controversial bill that alters Indiana’s net metering policy, passed the Senate 39-9 on Monday evening.

Net metering is a practice that allows people with solar panels, or other alternate energy generation sources, to sell excess energy back to utilities at the retail rate.

Sen. Brandt Hershman (R-Buck Creek), the bill’s author, says, despite some public confusion, the bill is actually good for the solar industry.

“It expands the ability of people to generate power for their own needs and to sell the excess back to the grid,” Hershman says.

Hoosier State Rail Line Funding In Question

Feb 6, 2017

The General Assembly provided $6 million in one-time money from the last state budget for the Hoosier State Rail Line between Indianapolis and Chicago. And lawmakers were prepared to provide that funding again in this year’s budget.

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