Statehouse Update: Pence Signs First Bill
Governor Mike Pence signed the first bill of his governorship this week while lawmakers approved a revision of the state’s criminal code, regulation of abortion drugs and the state budget. Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Brandon Smith reports on the week at the Statehouse:
Governor Mike Pence’s first bill signing approved legislation fast-tracked through the General Assembly aimed at preventing a 57 million dollar increase in farmland property taxes this year. House lawmakers also sent a two-year, 30 billion dollar state budget to the state Senate for approval. The bill includes 344 million more dollars for K through 12 education and 250 million dollars a year in permanent, sustainable infrastructure funding. It does not include the governor’s proposed ten percent income tax cut. Pence says he’ll continue to push for the cut in the Senate. The House also passed legislation overhauling the state’s criminal code. Changes include moving from four felony levels to six, reducing prison time for some non-violent offenses and an increasing emphasis on probation and rehabilitation. And the Senate this week approved a bill requiring women undergo an ultrasound before receiving abortion-inducing drugs from an abortion clinic. Opponents say the bill effectively requires an invasive transvaginal ultrasound. But supporters of the bill say it does not mandate any specific type of the procedure.