House Republicans successfully advanced their top priorities as they wrapped up the 2019 legislative session.
The passage of a $34 billion balanced two-year state budget topped the list with a record increase in new K-12 education funding. Other priorities included increasing protections for Hoosier youth, strengthening the state’s commitment to students and teachers, better aligning workforce initiatives and supporting Indiana’s veterans:
- House Enrolled Act 1001, the state budget proposal, maintains prudent reserves while providing a historic increase in K-12 public education by investing $763 million in new funding over the previous state budget. Lawmakers included $37.5 million per year for Teacher Appreciation Grants to reward effective and highly effective educators. The budget also includes a $150 million payment to an unfunded pension liability for Hoosier teachers, providing an estimated $70 million in annual savings to school budgets.
- House Enrolled Act 1002 promotes early and continuing career exploration and navigation, reinvigorates career and technical education courses and encourages completion of certifications or postsecondary credentials.
- House Enrolled Act 1003 strongly encourages schools to shift more existing and future dollars to Hoosier classrooms by setting a target for public schools to spend at least 85 percent of state funding on instructional and classroom expenses.
- House Enrolled Act 1004 builds on Indiana’s already strong school safety policies by implementing recommendations from Gov. Eric Holcomb’s school safety report to improve physical security at schools and mental health resources for students.
- House Enrolled Act 1005 moves up the appointment date of the school superintendent of public instruction to 2021 from 2025.
- House Enrolled Act 1006 implements necessary reforms for the Indiana Department of Child Services in order to improve outcomes for the state’s most vulnerable children.
- House Enrolled Act 1007 aims to engage more at-risk expecting mothers in early prenatal care, and requires medical providers to give verbal substance use screenings to pregnant women to improve and increase referrals to addiction treatment.
- House Enrolled Act 1008 creates new professional growth and advancement opportunities through teacher career ladder models.
- House Enrolled Act 1009 provides critical support for new educators by creating residency programs to pair new teachers with mentors in the classroom.
- House Enrolled Act 1010 phases in a 100% income tax exemption for military retirement pensions.
The legislative session has concluded, but lawmakers will be busy in the interim preparing for next session. Stay up-to-date with your local representative by signing up to receive electronic newsletters.