Halfway point: A look at key legislation in 2nd half of 2023 session

An aerial view of the Indiana Statehouse in downtown Indianapolis. Lawmakers are gathering at the Statehouse this month and next to finish the 2023 legislative session, focusing on issues such as child welfare, criminal justice reform, taxes and social issues. (IBJ file photo)

The Indiana General Assembly has officially entered the second half of the 2023 legislative session, with the House and Senate now considering legislation from the opposite chamber. However, bills that did not pass out of their original chambers are dead — sort of.

While the deadlines for bills to pass out of their original chambers have passed, lawmakers have the option of amending “dead” bills into “live” ones. So, it’s possible that a Senate bill that didn’t make it out of that chamber could be resurrected via an amendment to another bill — House or Senate — and vice versa.

Below is an update on key legislation affecting not only lawyers, but all Hoosiers statewide. Updates are as of March 10.

Senate Bill 26

Author: Sen. Mike Bohacek, R-Michiana Shores

Digest: Provides that an unlicensed caregiver is entitled to representation in a child in need of services proceeding.

Senate action: Passed Senate Judiciary Committee 10-0 but died in Senate Appropriations Committee

Senate Bill 331

Author: Sen. Mark Messmer, R-Jasper

Digest: Specifies that “deposition” or “depose,” for purposes of a criminal case with a child victim, means a deposition pursuant to Indiana Trial Rules 30 or 31, or any other formal or informal statement or interview.

Senate action: Passed 49-0

Next House action: Passed Courts and Criminal Code Committee 12-0, headed to full chamber

Senate Bill 464

Author: Sen. Stacey Donato, R-Logansport

Digest: Provides that a juvenile court does not have jurisdiction over an individual for certain offenses if the individual was at least 12 but younger than 18 at the time of the alleged violation, but at least 21 when charged.

Senate action: Passed 31-13

Next House action: Awaiting hearing in Courts and Criminal Code Committee

House Bill 1172

Author: Rep. Ed Clere, R-New Albany

Digest: Allows a child to commence a child custody proceeding under certain circumstances. Provides that a court having jurisdiction over a child in need of services or juvenile delinquency proceeding has concurrent jurisdiction over a paternity proceeding for purposes of establishing or modifying paternity, custody, parenting time or child support.

House action: Passed 95-0

Next Senate action: Awaiting hearing in Judiciary Committee

Senate Joint Resolution 1

Author: Sen. Eric Koch, R-Bedford

Digest: Provides that a person who poses a substantial risk to the public is not entitled to release on bail.

Senate action: Passed 34-15

Next House action: Awaiting hearing in Courts and Criminal Code Committee

Senate Bill 284

Author: Sen. Aaron Freeman, R-Indianapolis

Digest: Establishes a procedure for the appointment of a special prosecutor if an elected prosecutor categorically refuses to bring a certain class of charges.

Senate action: Passed 40-9

Next House action: Awaiting hearing in Courts and Criminal Code Committee

House Bill 1114

Author: Rep. Jerry Torr, R-Carmel

Digest: Creates new courts/
judicial officers for Daviess, Delaware, Dubois, Elkhart, Spencer and Vigo counties.

House action: Passed Courts and Criminal Code Committee but died in Ways and Means. Individual bills for Delaware, Dubois and Elkhart also died in committee.

Senate Bill 3

Author: Sen. Travis Holdman, R-Markle

Digest: Establishes a task force to review, among other things, eliminating the individual state income tax, including potential replacement revenue sources.

Senate action: Passed 49-0

Next House action: Awaiting hearing in Ways and Means Committee

House Bill 1499

Author: Rep. Jeff Thompson, R-Lizton

Digest: Implements a short-term property tax cap and increase in state income tax deductions; limits how much local government units can raise tax levies; and increases the renter’s deduction to $4,000.

House action: Passed 94-1

Next Senate action: Awaiting hearing in Tax and Fiscal Policy Committee

Senate Bill 480

Author: Sen. Tyler Johnson, R-Leo

Digest: Prohibits a physician from providing gender transition procedures to a minor, or aiding or abetting another physician to do so, with certain medical exceptions.

Senate action: Passed 36-12

Next House action: Awaiting hearing in Public Health Committee

House Bill 1608

Author: Rep. Michelle Davis, R-Whiteland

Digest: Among other things, requires a school to notify parents if a student requests to change his or her name, pronoun, title or other identifier in a way that is inconsistent with the child’s biological sex.

House action: Passed 65-29

Next Senate action: Awaiting hearing in Education and Career Development Committee

House Bill 1008

Author: Rep. Ethan Manning, R-Logansport

Digest: Among other things, provides that a fiduciary must discharge its duties solely in the financial interest of the participants and beneficiaries of the public pension system. Defines environmental, social and governance, or ESG, investing, and requires the Indiana Public Retirement System and Indiana State Police Pension Trust to divest from such funds or cut ties with ESG-investing financial managers.

House action: Passed 66-30

Next Senate action: Awaiting hearing in Pensions and Labor Committee

The Indiana Capital Chronicle contributed to this report.

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