February 4, 2022
The fifth week of the legislative session was a planned short week as the House and Senate reached third reading deadlines on Monday and Tuesday respectively. Bills must pass on third reading out of their originating chamber to still be eligible to become law in the second half of session. Of the 417 bills filed in the Senate, only 161, or 38%, survived. The House passed even fewer bills—104, or 24%, of the 432 filed. The 265 remaining bills will be assigned to the opposite chamber’s committees and will be eligible to be heard in committee beginning next week.
HB 1251: Various education matters
Passed House 73-17
The bill includes a variety of K-12 related provisions. The first of note requires the Indiana State Board of Education, in consultation with postsecondary educational institutions and various businesses and industries, to identify what skills or traits students need to be successful upon completion of high school. The second of note allows (1) the governing body of a school corporation the ability to issue an “adjunct teacher permit” to an individual who meets certain requirements; and (2) if a governing body of a school corporation issues an adjunct teacher permit to an individual, the school corporation may enter into an employment agreement with the individual as a part-time or full-time teacher of the school corporation.
SB 82: FAFSA requirement
Passed Senate 30-19
The bill requires all students in their senior year of high school to complete and submit the FAFSA unless certain conditions are met.
SB 89: Higher education scholarships
Passed Senate 49-0
This is the annual agency bill from the Indiana Commission for Higher Education (ICHE). The bill removes “expected family contribution” from Indiana Code and replaces it with “federal needs calculation” and changes student teaching stipends for eligible students to traditional scholarships.
SB 278: Indiana geological and water survey advisory council
Passed Senate 48-0
The bill modifies the structure of the Indiana Geological and Water Survey advisory council that would, in part, require various state agency department heads to serve on, or appoint members to, the council. The Survey essentially serves as a state institution embedded, and is funded through a special line item to IU in the state’s biennial budget. This change will better integrate the Survey with the state agencies they already partner with. Additionally, the bill would establish new centers within the Survey for energy and water research, positioning them for better external funding opportunities in the future. Both structure changes were recommended by an IU internal five-year review of the Survey.
SB 361: Economic development
Passed Senate 48-1
This is the Indiana Economic Development Corporation’s (IEDC) agenda bill. The bill provides IEDC a number of new economic development incentives and programs, such as the ability for IEDC to award tax credits for media production expenses for certain media productions in Indiana beginning July 1, 2023. The bill also requires the Indiana Destination Development Corporation to design and implement a new remote worker grant program to provide grants to new remote workers for certain qualifying expenses beginning July 1, 2023.