2015 Legislative Session
Indiana University Office of State Relations
State House Report 10
It was the second week of the second half of the legislative session and the number of committee hearings picked up now that all bills passing the Senate have been assigned to committees in the House and vice versa.
On Wednesday, President McRobbie spent the day in the State House, where he met with leaders in the House and Senate and Governor Pence. President McRobbie also presented IU’s biennial budget request to the Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday. In addition to discussing IU’s biennial request, his presentation provided a report on IU’s initiatives and successes during the past two years and was very well received.
Bills that Moved Last Week
HB 1001 Biennial Budget: As mentioned above, President McRobbie, as well as the Presidents from our sister institutions, were afforded the opportunity to present to the Senate Appropriations committee. In addition to presentations from the universities, the committee will hear about biennial funding needs from the K-12 community and other interest groups as well as major state agencies as part of the process that leads to passage of the Senate’s version of the biennial budget in early April.
HB 1042 Education Loan Information: The bill requires colleges and universities that enroll students who receive state financial aid to annually provide each student with certain information concerning the student’s educational loans. As reported last week, the provisions of this bill are largely based on IU’s highly successful student loan awareness program. The bill passed the committee and is now eligible for 2nd and 3rd reading on the floor of the Senate.
HB 1102 Patent Protection: The bill prohibits a person from asserting a claim of patent infringement in bad faith. Originally the bill exempted universities and their affiliated technology transfer organizations, but was amended at IU’s request to also extend the exemption to licensees that claim patent infringement on a patent licensed by a university or university affiliated technology transfer organization. Brion St Armour, Head of Intellectual Property for the IU Research and Technology Corporation, testified in support of the bill, which was heard in the Senate Civil Law Committee.
HB 1108 Dyslexia: The bill requires an individual seeking an initial elementary school teacher practitioner’s license to demonstrate proficiency in recognizing a student that is not progressing in reading at a normal rate may need to be referred to the school’s multidisciplinary team to determine the student’s special learning needs, including learning related to dyslexia. The bill passed out of the Senate Education Committee and is eligible for 2nd and 3rd reading.
HB 1231 Accelerated Degree Award: The bill would establish a new program to provide awards to college programs that, along with specified requirements, permits a student to graduate at least 1 year ahead of schedule. The bill does not include any appropriation to fund the program. The bill was heard in committee and will be considered again by the committee next week.
SB 434 National Guard and Veterans Tuition: The bill would require higher education institutions to charge resident tuition for both undergraduate and graduate coursework to non-resident students serving in the Indiana National Guard. The bill would also extend resident tuition for graduate studies to certain veterans and persons serving on active duty (statute currently requires resident tuition on undergraduate coursework). The bill passed out of committee without amendment and was not amended on 2nd reading on the floor of the House. It is now eligible for a final 3rd reading vote.
Looking Ahead to Next Week
We expect a fairly heavy committee hearing schedule next week and as a result, more bills to be eligible for 2nd and 3rd readings on the floors of each Chamber. Next week will be the 11th week of the legislative session, with only 7 remaining afterwards.