Governor Mike Pence

Indiana House GOP

Governor Mike Pence has acted on eight recommendations from the first two meetings of the drug abuse task force, drawing praise from state and federal officials.  However, half of those actions largely rehash initiatives already in place.

Some of the directives Pence has issued include crafting substance abuse curriculum for children, developing guidelines for doctors prescribing acute pain medication and spreading successful youth assistance programs statewide. 

Alan Berning / https://www.flickr.com/photos/14617207@N00/2621375759

Indiana is once again headed to federal court to block and Environmental Protection Agency regulation. 

Indiana was part of an effort to block the EPA's power plant rule before it became final. The latest lawsuit -- involving Indiana and 23 other states -- takes aim at the regulation now that it's taken effect. 

The EPA rule would require Hoosier state power plants to reduce their carbon emissions between 30 and 38 percent by 2030....a mandate Gov. Mike Pence calls ill-conceived, saying it will be too costly for the state to comply, 

Harrison Wagner / WTIU

In the coming days, the state will pay off the remainder of a federal unemployment insurance loan.  The governor says it will save employers $327 million next year.  

The state’s unemployment insurance trust fund ran out of money when the recession hit, forcing Indiana (like many others) to take out the loan. As long as there’s still money left to be paid back on the unemployment insurance loan, employers pay a penalty, one that would increase next year to $126 per employee. 

Joshua Duffy / https://www.flickr.com/photos/joshduffyphoto/7283981926

Cities and counties around Indiana will have to recover from this summer’s storms and flooding without federal aid after FEMA Wednesday denied Governor’s Mike Pence appeal for help. 

Governor Pence in August asked FEMA to provide emergency grants to 19 counties.  The grants help pay up to 75 percent of costs incurred by local governments for road, bridge and utility repairs and building damage. 

Andreas Johannsen / https://www.flickr.com/photos/andjohan/564471485

Indiana’s unemployment rate decreased for the seventh consecutive month in September, falling to its lowest level in eight years.  

The Hoosier State’s private sector rebounded from August job losses to add 6,600 jobs last month.  And the unemployment rate dropped to 4.5 percent, the lowest level since July 2007. 

The number of Hoosiers working or actively looking for work has increased more than any other Midwest state over the last two years, though the rate of the Indiana population’s participation in the labor force is middle of the pack among the state’s neighbors. 

Barbara Brosher / WFIU

Governor Mike Pence unveiled a road funding proposal Tuesday that would spend one billion dollars over the next four years to preserve existing roads and bridges. Most of the money requires legislative approval and not a single new dollar would be available before July of 2016.

Judge Approves Overcharging Lawsuit Against Indiana BMV

Oct 13, 2015
Indiana Stan / https://www.flickr.com/photos/photosbystan/2266490604

The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles may owe Hoosiers more money.

A judge Monday approved a class-action lawsuit against the BMV and ordered another round of mediation. The agency has admitted to 112 overcharges totaling more than $30 million in recent years.

Indianapolis attorney Irwin Levin – who’s representing plaintiffs in the case -- says the agency needs to repay Hoosiers.

“The BMV will never have integrity until they give people back the money that they overcharged them,” Levin says.

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Governor Mike Pence is increasing school safety grant funding by more than $3 million in the wake of a shooting at an Oregon community college that left ten people, including the gunman, dead. However, the measure also comes after the new state budget cut that funding by more than half.

The legislature created the school safety grant fund in 2013 in response to the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting.  Lawmakers appropriated $10 million a year for schools to hire resource officers and make safety improvements. 

Pence Appeals FEMA's Flood Assistance Refusal

Oct 8, 2015
FEMA / http://www.fema.gov/about-agency

Governor Pence is appealing a federal decision denying a request for assistance to help local governments recover from flooding and severe storms.

The governor calls FEMA's decision "arbitrary," ''erroneous" and "inconsistent" with the way the agency treats other states. The funds were requested to help pay for damages after severe summer storms that led to flooding and crop damage.

Nineteen counties are included in the request and Pence says he’s reserving the right to add additional counties.

House GOP / https://www.flickr.com/photos/republicanconference/9412207764

Sixth District Congressman Luke Messer says John Boehner's successor as House speaker needs to find a way to unite Republicans.

Messer acknowledges the present GOP is a “divided party.”  He says House Republicans need to focus on balancing the budget, boosting the economy and opposing what he calls "overreach" by President Obama.

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