Mike Pence

Pence Announces New State Mental Health Hospital

Dec 16, 2015
courtesy photo

Governor Mike Pence announced Wednesday plans for a new $120 million mental health hospital on the east side of Indianapolis. 

The state is partnering with Community Health Network to develop a neuro-diagnostic institute, which will have 159 beds and the capacity to treat 1,500 patients per year.

Pence emphasizes that along with confronting mental illness, the facility was created to fight the state’s ongoing drug addiction crisis.

Pence also notes that of the 30 thousand people incarcerated in Indiana, nearly half have a mental illness or substance abuse disorder.

Office of the Governor

Governor Mike Pence Tuesday reiterated the defense of his decision to suspend Indiana’s refugee resettlement program for those fleeing Syria and, now, Iraq.  But three weeks after he announced the suspension, it’s still unclear how much impact Pence’s policy can have.

Pence’s comments came in the wake of Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph Tobin’s announcement that Catholic Charities brought in a Syrian family to the Hoosier State.  The governor says he respectfully disagrees with that decision while adding that his heart goes out to the refugees.

Sarah Fentem / WBAA

Close to 80 protestors gathered in West Lafayette today to march in protest of Governor Mike Pence’s recent order blocking the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Indiana.

Kathleen O’Connor, herself the grandchild of refugees from Ireland, say Pence’s withdrawal of funding to state agencies that help Syrian refugees relocate is antithetical to American ideals.

“Our country has been so enriched by the refugees and immigrants that have come,” she says. “I don’t see how we can shut the door.”

Alan Levine / https://www.flickr.com/photos/cogdog/15152251297

While Democrats have criticized Governor Pence's road funding plan for not including money for local streets, Republicans are uneasy about the use of a funding source the state has largely steered clear of in recent years: a bond issue.

Pence has proposed floating bonds for a quarter of the billion dollars he wants to raise.

House Ways and Means Chairman Tim Brown (R-Crawfordsville) has said he's "concerned" about that piece of the plan.

Eric Molina / https://www.flickr.com/photos/iamagenious/

Governor Mike Pence’s Drug Abuse Task Force is scheduled for only three meetings, with some questioning whether much can be accomplished in such a short period.  Task force co-chair John Hill says the three meetings might just be the beginning.

The first task force meeting took place in Indianapolis earlier this month; the other two will take place in Evansville and South Bend.  Hill says he wants the group to address some of the most pressing issues in those meetings and provide recommendations for legislative action next session:

Mike Demers / https://www.flickr.com/photos/mdd/9890957405/

Governor Pence is dismissing charges by opponents that the closure of a bridge on I-65 near Lafayette is a result of neglected maintenance.

Pence says the bridge over Tippecanoe County’s Wildcat Creek was scheduled for replacement next spring. But while engineers are still trying to determine exactly why the bridge sank several inches into the ground, Pence says INDOT's tentative conclusion is that other construction work caused the bridge to settle.

He says engineers are studying whether erosion around an underground aquifer may have played a role as well.

Noah Coffey / https://www.flickr.com/photos/noahwesley/

Pence administration officials say they’ll work with press organizations to carefully evaluate the proposed state news service before it’s unveiled to the public. 

Pence’s communications director Christy Denault says the original intent of the Just IN news service was to serve as a clearinghouse, a “one-stop shop,” for press releases from all state agencies. 

She says the current system, a state news calendar, didn’t display releases from nearly half of the state’s 90 agencies. 

Governor praises response to the winter storm

Jan 6, 2014

State officials say they’re meeting the challenges presented by the winter storm, but admit the work is not done yet.

Governor Mike Pence says the frigid cold is still dangerous and Hoosiers should stay home if they don’t need to go out.

He’s declaring a state of emergency for 27 counties, and says more could be added to the list.

Indiana State Police superintendent Doug Carter says the crisis center will continue operating until late Tuesday. More than 300 troopers are on patrol or helping coordinate activities Monday.

Pence urges Hoosiers to prepare for winter storm

Jan 4, 2014

Governor Mike Pence issued the following statement Saturday in advance of the winter weather heading to Indiana:

“In preparation for the inclement weather, I encourage Hoosiers to assemble an emergency preparedness kit with plenty of non-perishable food and water, fill any necessary prescriptions, ensure they have a safe heating source, avoid unnecessary travel, and be careful if they must be outside.

Pre-K voucher program could cost IN $60M

Dec 31, 2013

One of Governor Mike Pence’s legislative priorities is passing a voucher-style pre-K program for four year olds. While there’s popular support for early learning among Hoosier lawmakers, it would not be cheap.

About 10,000 of the roughly 40,000 low-income kids who would qualify for state-funded preschool each year under Pence’s proposal are already enrolled in Head Start. And it’s unlikely that every one of the remaining 30,000 four year olds would participate, says Brookings Institute fellow Russ Whitehurst.

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