2015 Legislative Session
Indiana University Office of State Relations
State House Report 9
After a long weekend break, the General Assembly returned on Monday to begin the second half of the legislative session. Nearly 400 of the more than 1,200 bills introduced are still under consideration as the legislative process repeats the steps of the first half of the session. Committee Chairs will decide which bills to hear in their committees and bills passing out of committee will then be eligible for 2nd and 3rd reading on the floors of the House and Senate.
It usually takes some time for the second half of the legislative session to get into full gear as it is necessary first for the Senate President Pro Tempore and the House Speaker to assign bills that were introduced and passed in their sister chamber to committees and for committee chairs to review bills assigned to their committees and make decisions on which bills to hear. Thus, committee hearing activity this week was lighter than usual.
It was also a time in which the General Assembly and lobbyists could enjoy time together at the annual Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute Gridiron, a popular dinner and entertainment event.
Bills that Moved Last Week
HB 1001 Biennial Budget: The biennial budget received an initial hearing in the Senate Appropriations Committee as the author, House Ways and Means Chairman Tim Brown, presented the bill and answered questions from committee members.
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. The provisions of this bill are largely based on IU’s highly successful student loan awareness program. IU provided testimony on the bill, which was heard in the Senate Education Committee.
HB 1108 Dyslexia: The bill requires an individual seeking an initial practitioner’s license as an elementary school teacher to demonstrate proficiency in the recognition that a student who is not progressing at a normal rate related to reading may need to be referred to the school’s multidisciplinary team to determine the student’s special learning needs, including learning needs related to dyslexia. The bill was heard in the Senate Education Committee.
Looking Ahead to Next Week
We expect committee hearings to move into a higher gear next week as chairs have had time to review bills assigned to their committees. A highlight for IU will be President McRobbie’s presentation of Indiana University’s biennial request to the Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday, the last of his four request presentations that typically occur during a budget legislative session.