January 27, 2023
The Big Issues
- This summer the General Assembly took a comprehensive look at the barriers and opportunities for housing growth in the state by convening the Housing Task Force, on which Aim served and testified. The task force concluded with several recommendations for action by the General Assembly this session that are beginning to be introduced as legislation.
- HB 1005 is the House Republican agenda bill that came from the task force. It includes a framework for a revolving loan fund to support housing projects that can otherwise not secure sufficient financing to be profitable with priority for local governments that voluntarily waive certain local standards.
- SB 300 and HB 1081 support Aim’s legislative initiative to expand the residential TIF program. Specifically, removing the restrictions on which communities can access this tool that are based on recent housing stock growth.
- HB 1005, authored by Rep. Doug Miller (R-Elkhart) passed the House Government and Regulatory Reform Committee on Tuesday with a vote of 12-0. SB 300, authored by Sen. Linda Rogers (R-Granger), passed the Senate Tax and Fiscal Policy Committee on Tuesday with a vote of 10-2.
BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY TAX
- HB 1430 would raise the business personal property tax exemption from $80,000 to $250,000, exempting more businesses from having to file or pay property tax on their personal property.
- Aim opposes this bill because it further chips away at the business personal property tax base resulting in losses to local government budgets and tax rate increases for other taxpayers in the community.
- HB 1430, authored by Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville), was heard in the House Ways and Means committee on Wednesday but was held for potential votes in future meetings.
LIVESTREAMING AND ARCHIVING OF PUBLIC MEETINGS
- HB 1167 would require all meetings of local boards and commissions to be recorded and stored publicly on the local government’s website or another hosting service for at least 90 days, after which time the video can be transferred to the state archives to store.
- Aim opposes this bill due to the cost and technological requirements of the new mandate that could be difficult for communities, especially smaller communities, to absorb.
- HB 1167, authored by Rep. Ben Smaltz (R-Auburn), passed the House Government and Regulatory Reform Committee on Tuesday with a vote of 11-0. It was recommitted to House Ways & Means.
OUTDOOR REFRESHMENT AREAS
- SB 20 and HB 1349 would allow municipalities to designate specific areas in cities and towns where alcohol can be freely carried out and consumed inside the designated area with ATC approval. There are guardrails in both bills including a requirement that guests consuming alcohol wear a wristband indicating they’re over 21 and limits on serving sizes.
- Aim supports this idea as an exciting opportunity for economic development and quality of place. It will allow more municipal events such as concerts and festivals to go forward in communities around the state.
- SB 20, authored by Sen. Liz Brown (R-Fort Wayne), will be heard in the Senate Public Policy Committee next Wednesday. HB 1349, authored by Rep. Shane Lindauer (R-Jasper), passed the House Public Policy Committee on Tuesday with a vote of 12-0.
- Over the past two years, the Governor’s commission on Public Health has met preparing recommendations for ways to improve Indiana’s public health system attempting to learn from the successes and failures of the COVID public health response. The recommendations from that commission have been incorporated into HB 1001 and SB 4.
- Changes in HB 1001 and SB 4 provide new state and local funding resources to public health departments and changes their governance to include municipal input and options for regionalization. It also provides new statewide resources for data collection and analysis to support public health departments.
- HB 1001, authored by Rep. Jeff Thompson (R-Lizton), is the state budget and is being heard on an ongoing basis in the House Ways and Means Committee. SB 4, authored by Sen. Ed Charbonneau (R-Valparaiso), will be heard next Wednesday in the Senate Public Health Committee.
AIM LEGISLATIVE MOMENT
“Over the next couple of weeks as the committee reporting deadline looms large at the end of January, I think you’ll see more and more committees scheduled and even more bills assigned to be heard.”
– Jenna Bentley, Aim Government Affairs Director
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