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Holcomb's READI program ready for more funding in 2023 state budget

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb stands in the center of a group of state and local officials posing for a photo at the award ceremony for the first round of READI grant funding. Holcomb is a White man with light gray hair and beard, wearing glasses and a suit and tie.
FILE PHOTO: Samantha Horton
/
IPB News
Gov. Eric Holcomb stands in the center of a group of state and local officials posing for a photo at the award ceremony for the first round of READI grant funding on Dec. 14, 2021.

Gov. Eric Holcomb’s major economic development initiative – the READI grant program – looks set for another major influx of funding.

The governor created the READI grants in 2021 as a way to help generate public and private investment in local economic development. Its first round of funding – $500 million – came from the Biden administration’s stimulus package, the American Rescue Plan.

House Speaker Todd Huston (R-Fishers) said he wants another $500 million in the upcoming state budget.

“Using READI funding and other tools, we can work with our local partners to ensure more communities have housing options to meet the needs of today and the future,” Huston said.

READ MORE: Indiana officials award all 17 READI grant proposals, totaling $500 million

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Senate Democratic Leader Greg Taylor (D-Indianapolis) said the Republican-led legislature has spent too much time cutting taxes for businesses and not enough on ensuring the state has an adequate workforce.

“Adequately fund K-12 education, start children in school at age 5 instead of 7 and we’ll see the benefits from that across the state of Indiana and businesses will benefit,” Taylor said.

The session begins in January.

Contact reporter Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.