Indiana Legislature

Indiana Black Legislative Caucus Unveils 2020 Agenda

Jan 14, 2020
Brandon Smith/IPB News

The Indiana Black Legislative Caucus wants the state to push forward measures that will improve prescription drug costs, children’s health and jail overcrowding.

Rep. Robin Shackleford (D-Indianapolis) – head of the black caucus – says rising health care costs are a pervasive problem throughout Indiana, and particularly in minority communities. To help address that, she wants to cap the amount insurance companies can charge for a 30-day supply of insulin at $100.

“One in four diabetics are sharing their insulin," Shackleford says. "They’re not taking their insulin.”

Advocates Push For Dementia Protection Bills

Jan 13, 2020
Darian Benson/IPB News

Advocates are pushing for two proposals that would offer more protections for people living with dementia

Members of the Indiana’s chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association made their case Monday at the Statehouse.

Indiana General Assembly

Indiana lawmakers say they’ll push forward with legislation to increase the legal age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21.

That’s despite Congress already making that change to federal law.

Raising the legal age to smoke and vape to 21 is on the agenda of both House and Senate Republicans this year. And Senate President Pro Tem Rodric Bray (R-Martinsville) says that’s despite federal lawmakers already changing the law nationwide.

“Well, on the outside chance they decide to change that, we would still have that in place,” Bray says.

Indiana Lawmakers Back At Statehouse For 2020 Session

Jan 6, 2020

Indiana lawmakers are returning to the Statehouse for the start of their 2020 session, with contentious debates over education matters looking likely again.

The Indiana House and Senate will meet Monday afternoon at the Statehouse in Indianapolis to begin a session that's scheduled to last until early March.

Their return comes seven weeks after several thousand teachers attended a Statehouse rally, calling for better pay and more respect from the Republican-dominated Legislature.

Two Veteran Indiana House Members Not Seeking Reelection

Jan 3, 2020

One of the longest-serving members of the Indiana House is among two Republican lawmakers who’ve decided to not seek reelection this year.

Seventy-six-year-old Rep. David Wolkins of Warsaw says he’s decided to step down from the seat he’s held since first winning election in 1988.

Wolkins has been chairman of the House Environmental Affairs Committee for several years, often frustrating activists who want tougher state anti-pollution laws.

More Gaming Industry Changes Possible In Legislature

Dec 26, 2019
Brandon Smith/IPB News

Lawmakers in 2019 passed gaming legislation that was called the most transformative measure for the industry in decades.

Despite those big changes, the legislature likely isn’t done tweaking the state’s gambling rules.

One of the biggest provisions of the 2019 gaming bill was legalized sports wagering, including mobile bets. The Gaming Commission, industry leaders and lawmakers all say they’re happy with how it rolled out.

Indiana General Assembly

Republican legislative leaders aren’t sold on a proposal to lower the minimum age at which a Hoosier could serve in the General Assembly.

The Indiana Constitution says Hoosiers must be 25 years old to serve in the state Senate, 21 in the House. Rep. Chris Chyung (D-Dyer) wants to lower that, ideally to 18. He argues it will help both parties build the future.

Next Indiana House Speaker To Be Chosen Soon

Nov 20, 2019
Brandon Smith/IPB News

Hoosiers will know the identity of the next speaker of the Indiana House within the next few weeks.

That’s after current Speaker Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis) announced Tuesday he’ll step down next year. And at least one potential replacement has already stated his intention to seek the job.

State Sen. Randy Head To Leave General Assembly

Jul 29, 2019
FILE PHOTO: Lauren Chapman/IPB News

The Indiana Senate is losing one of its leaders.

Sen. Randy Head (R-Logansport) announced Monday he will step down in August.

Head says he’s leaving to become the deputy prosecutor in Pulaski County. Before joining the Senate in 2008, he was the deputy prosecutor in Cass County.

In a statement, Head says he wanted to pursue the new opportunity and expressed his gratitude to the people of his district. Senate President Pro Tem Rodric Bray (R-Martinsville) praised Head’s knowledge, experience and passion.

Lawmakers Approve Study Topics For Summer Committees

May 21, 2019
Brandon Smith

Prescription drug prices and rising health care costs, ticket scalping, and adoption subsidies are just some of the issues lawmakers will tackle in study committees this year.

Lauren Chapman

An effort to raise Indiana’s tobacco tax failed during this year’s legislative session as well as other attempts to reduce smoking in the Hoosier state. 

The 2019 legislative session has officially come to an end, and lawmakers’ attempts to address a number of education issues are receiving mixed reviews.

Lawmakers wrapped up the 2019 legislative session with passage of a new, two-year state budget and a major gambling bill. But a vaping tax couldn’t make it to the finish line.

Here’s what you might have missed this week at the Statehouse.

2019 Session: Quiet With Few Major Controversies

Apr 25, 2019
Lauren Chapman

A lot of Indiana lawmakers described the 2019 session the same way – it was a quiet one, with no big blowups or major controversies that typically characterize the General Assembly’s annual term. 

There were a lot of surprises on the energy and environment front in this 2019 legislative session. If you haven't been keeping up, here's what you need to know:

What's Now A Law: