Friday, March 1, 2013


The Legislative session reached its midway point this week and the following is a recap and preview of what is to come.

The House finished their bills Monday night and the Senate on Tuesday. Now they will come back on Monday with committee meetings to start hearings of bills that passed the other house. The Senate Education Committee will hear HB 1003 whenever Sen. Kruse wants to schedule it. It could be as early as Wednesday March 6th. So the Senate Education Committee members will be the first to consider it. It is not too early to let every Senator know that there are many people who oppose the huge new costs of HB 1003, not to mention the concept.

No committee meeting for Senate Education has been posted yet, so we don't know what they will do on Wednesday

Positives from first half

HB 1337 met its demise in the 11th hour shenanigans attempted by Representative Behning.  Thanks to all the Republicans who crossed the aisle to vote down this fiasco and send a message to the Representative from Indianapolis.  His bill failed big.  The tally?  33 ayes and 61 nays.   This was a huge vote FOR public schools and AGAINST a seemingly unquenchable thirst to put public schools in the hands of private school profiteers.

SB 416, although it met its demise when its sponsor (Senator Carlin Yoder of Middlebury) pulled it in the 11th hour from the full senate, still passed the Senate Education committee with unanimous support and could be revived in an amendment to another bill as the session moves forward.

ALEC instigated education legislation seems to be falling apart across the country.  This is a huge positive, but also should serve as a warning to watch for more double sided shenanigans to come from those who are ALEC members in the Indiana House ans Senate.  They will not stop without hearing the message of our VOICES loud and clear.  Do you think Representative Behning hears the message yet?

Negatives from the first half

Most anything else could be considered negative.  The fact that there is a second half coming is negative enough.  We must keep a cautious eye on byth houses again as they manipulate and "amend" bills coming to them from the other house.  Be ready to continue the calls, emails, and letter writing to show that 1.3 million voters in November chose to support PUBLIC education and we intend to put a stop to the constant attempts to destroy our PUBLIC schools through ALEC legislation disguised as "reform". 

HB 1334 passed by a vote of 62-33.  HB 1334 is the bill that singles out public school employees by prohibiting their school employers from deducting voluntary contributions that employees wish to have deducted from their own pay for political activities.  In some circles those voluntary contributions would be considered “exercising your right to free speech.”  In some other circles, those voluntary contributions would be lauded as evidence of bona fide voter engagement.   Not for public school employees though. 

And on top of everything else, HB 1334 is not even drafted very cleanly when it comes to the payroll issues—leaving us all to wonder what is and is not permissible with regard to dues deduction.  HB 1334 is pretty awful and anti-teacher and anti-Association.  We have more work to do on this one.

Check back here often, starting Monday, for more updates and calls to action regarding our PUBLIC schools and the destruction they face at the hands of the Indiana Legislature.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for summarizing Vic's Statehouse notes on your blog! We are fortunate to have him so in tune to what is happening in the Statehouse and passing it along to us!