Statehouse News

Capstone of criminal code reform put in place during 2015 session

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The bill establishing the funding and the mechanism to distribute the dollars needed for Indiana’s new criminal code reform had a bumpy ride through the Statehouse. But in the final hours of the 2015 legislative session, lawmakers approved language that ensured the money would be funneled through local programs and projects designed to reduce recidivism and ease overcrowding in Indiana’s prisons.
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Indiana lawmakers approve tougher ethics laws after lapses

April 28, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana legislators gave final approval Monday to a state ethics law overhaul that requires greater financial disclosure by lawmakers and expressly prohibits elected officials from using state resources for political purposes.
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Indiana Senate backs bill loosening rules on wine sales

April 22, 2015
 Associated Press, IL Staff
Indiana residents will have an easier time having wine shipped to their homes under a bill approved by state lawmakers.
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Senate narrowly backs repeal of construction wage law

April 15, 2015
 Associated Press
The Indiana Senate has narrowly approved a Republican-led push to repeal the state law that sets wages for public construction projects.
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Indiana lawmakers reject extending civil rights protections

April 15, 2015
 Associated Press
Republicans in the Indiana House of Representatives turned aside an effort Tuesday to extend nondiscrimination protections for gays and lesbians in response to the uproar over the new religious objections law.
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Voters to consider hunting amendment to Indiana Constitution

April 15, 2015
 Associated Press
A measure will be on the Indiana ballot in 2016 asking voters if they want to approve a constitutional amendment preserving the right to hunt and fish in the state.
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Senate considers changes to bill repealing construction wage

April 15, 2015
 Associated Press
The Republican-controlled Senate defeated several proposed changes Tuesday to a measure that would repeal the state's construction wage law, despite growing concerns over how the bill will affect Indiana's construction industry.
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Lawmaker looks to spur Indiana gay rights protections debate

April 14, 2015
 Associated Press
A Democratic lawmaker said Monday he wanted to force an Indiana House debate over whether to extend protections for gays, lesbians and others under the state's nondiscrimination laws less than two weeks after the backlash over the religious objections law.
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Indiana unveils changes to religious freedom bill

April 2, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana lawmakers announced proposed changes Thursday to the state's new religious objections law aimed at quelling widespread criticism from businesses and other groups that have called the proposal anti-gay.
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Pence wants changes to religious-objections law

March 31, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence said Tuesday that he wants legislation on his desk by the end of the week to clarify that the state's new religious-freedom law does not allow discrimination against gays and lesbians.
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Change to Indiana law on sex trafficking victims wins approval

March 17, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana legislators have approved changing state law so that those younger than 18 won't be prosecuted for prostitution if they were a victim of human trafficking.
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Indiana House panel endorses religious objections bill

March 17, 2015
 Associated Press
Rallies drawing hundreds of people on both sides of a contentious proposal that could allow people to cite strong religious beliefs to deny services for activities such as same-sex weddings didn't seem to change any minds among Indiana legislators Monday.
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Senate panel discusses bill to boost industrial hemp crop

March 16, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana Senate committee is considering a bill that lawmakers say could speed up the federal approval process to grow industrial hemp in Indiana.
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Legislative debate highlights issues surrounding juvenile offenders

March 11, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A proposed change to Indiana’s juvenile law has state legislators wrestling with the question of when children should be treated like adults.
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Bill would put bigger burden on cities seeking annexations

March 2, 2015
 Associated Press
The Indiana Legislature is considering changing the state's annexation laws by putting a greater burden on cities to do outreach in areas where they want to grow.
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Bill would let Indiana businesses battle patent trolls in state courts

February 25, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A bill, authored by Bedford Republican Rep. Eric Koch, would prohibit a person from asserting a bad-faith claim of patent infringement and would enable the Indiana business accused of infringing to seek remedy in state court.
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Senate panel quickly advances religious freedom bill

February 18, 2015
 Associated Press
Republicans on an Indiana Senate committee quickly advanced a proposed religious freedom law before any of the Democratic members arrived to vote.
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Medical malpractice bill killed in Senate

February 17, 2015
Dave Stafford
A proposal to allow clear medical malpractice claims to go directly to court rather than through medical review panels was defeated Monday in the Indiana Senate.
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House panel backs repealing Indiana public projects wage law

February 17, 2015
 Associated Press
A sharply divided Indiana House committee has endorsed a proposal to repeal the state law that sets wages for public construction projects.
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Indiana Senate panel sidelines ending straight-ticket voting

February 16, 2015
 Associated Press
A push to eliminate straight party-line voting on Indiana election ballots has been sidelined in the state Senate.
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House panel backs ending straight-ticket voting

February 12, 2015
 Associated Press
A legislative committee has endorsed a proposal that would eliminate straight party-line voting on Indiana election ballots.
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House panel passes bill lifting ban on Sunday alcohol sales

February 11, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana House committee has approved a bill that would lift the ban on Sunday carry-out alcohol sales while also placing new restrictions on grocery stores and pharmacies.
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Veterans court bill gets green light from Senate committee

February 11, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A bill that would establish veterans courts in every judicial district has passed the Senate Judiciary Committee and been reassigned to the Appropriations Committee.
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Indiana bills to increase minimum wage go unheard

February 11, 2015
Dave Stafford
More than half of states in the U.S. have enacted laws increasing their minimum wages above the federal standard of $7.25 an hour, but the Indiana Legislature won’t even discuss it.
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Legislature tinkers with new Indiana criminal code

February 11, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Two different stories by two different witnesses highlighted Indiana’s continuing struggles with its new criminal code.
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  1. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  2. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  3. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

  4. "...not those committed in the heat of an argument." If I ever see a man physically abusing a woman or a child and I'm close enough to intercede I will not ask him why he is abusing her/him. I will give him a split second to cease his attack and put his hands in the air while I call the police. If he continues, I will still call the police but to report, "Man down with a gunshot wound,"instead.

  5. And so the therapeutic state is weaonized. How soon until those with ideologies opposing the elite are disarmed in the name of mental health? If it can start anywhere it can start in the hoosiers' slavishly politically correct capital city.

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