Indiana News

Indiana related news items and stories.

Great Lakes Programs Slashed Under Trump Budget

Mar 24, 2017

 

The health of the Great Lakes is in danger, according to statewide lawmakers and environmental leaders, due to budget cuts proposed by President Donald Trump.

The Great Lakes are the world’s largest system of freshwater lakes and the federal government currently spends around $300 million protecting them. Under President Trump’s proposed budget, that spending would be reduced to $5 million.

U.S Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana) says that money wasn’t being wasted.

The Hoosier unemployment rate ticked up by one-tenth of a percent to 4.1 percent last month. That’s the first increase since January of last year. The rate is still lower than the national average and all neighboring states.

After two consecutive months of declines, the private sector added jobs in February – 4,400 for the month. The surge was led by the manufacturing industry.

Remaining residents of a lead-contaminated public housing complex in East Chicago are gearing up for a fight about the city’s plans to relocate them.

Sixty-seven families still lived in West Calumet Housing Complex as of Wednesday. It’s less than a quarter of the original residents in the neighborhood, which sits in a federal Superfund site and is slated for demolition, pending federal approval.

Indiana schools stand to lose about $56 million for teacher training and after school programs for low-income students, under proposed budget cuts by President Donald Trump’s administration.

Jennifer McCormick, Indiana superintendent of public instruction, says the proposed budget would be “a big hit” to the state. She says cuts would hamper efforts to attract teachers, stifle new programs under a new federal education law and reduce programs for low-income students.

The Senate Appropriations Committee made several changes Thursday to a bill dealing with Indiana gaming taxes and revenue.

Rep. Todd Huston’s (R-Fishers) legislation makes several gaming industry changes, including creating a new wagering tax on casinos and eliminating the admissions tax casinos pay.

Holcomb Now Backing Federal Health Care Bill

Mar 23, 2017

Governor Eric Holcomb says he’s backing the federal health care reform bill after expressing concerns about the measure only last week.

Legislation that would offer high school journalists the same legal protections as professional journalists moved closer to law today.

House Bill 1130 would prevent public K-12 schools from disciplining students for expressing their First Amendment rights in a school-funded publication.

Committee Chairman Sen. Dennis Kruse (R-Auburn) proposed an amendment to let the State Board of Education decide disputes.

Committee OKs New Public Records Search Fee

Mar 22, 2017

 

A Senate committee approved a bill that would allow state and local government agencies to charge the public a substantial fee for lengthy public record searches.

Those searches are currently free.

A House committee Wednesday added the entire contents of a controversial bill on gun regulations to a different bill dealing with firearms.

House Bill 1071 allows people protected by restraining orders to carry handguns without a license for up to 60 days. The controversial measure passed the House last month and is awaiting a hearing in the Senate.

 

Legal experts and lawmakers can’t agree on the constitutionality of a proposal that would require parents be notified if their underage daughter goes to court to get consent for an abortion.

Net Metering Bill Continues To Draw Debate

Mar 22, 2017

 

A bill that would change net metering for solar energy production got its first hearing before a House committee Wednesday, continuing to draw debate from a wide range of stakeholders.

The House Utilities committee worked through lunch to hear 6 hours of testimony from 60 individuals on Senate Bill 309.

Manufacturing companies all over the state have open positions and can’t find qualified workers to fill them. These jobs require specialized training because the new world of manufacturing requires more technology-based skills. So companies are finding new opportunities to teach them.

THE PROBLEM IN ONE MANUFACTURING TOWN

Financing Sought For Healthy Food Legislation

Mar 21, 2017

Supporters of a bill that would expand access to healthy food rallied at the Statehouse this week. They are pushing for lawmakers to establish a healthy food financing initiative.

Currently, legislation that would create a program to help businesses and non-profits increase fresh food access in underserved areas doesn’t have any state money attached.

Federal Budget Puts Low-Income College Grants On Chopping Block

Mar 21, 2017

The newest federal budget presented by President Donald Trump dramatically reduces money for grants designed to help low-income students go to college.

The budget would eliminate the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, money for students with exceptional financial need, and proposes a $3.9 billion reduction in Pell Grants, the primary federal college grant program.

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