Work Begins at Indianapolis Statehouse

Legislators are now in Indianapolis for the long-session of the General Assembly.

5th District State Senator Ed Charbonneau offered comment on the issue of reversion reform which could result from projected revenue increases over the next two years. Reversions allow the Governor to withhold spending in the instance of an economic downturn or other revenue shortfall.

Charbonneau says anytime concerns are raised, it’s a good idea to review the matter.

“The Governor’s ability to hold money back is one of the good things we have, I think, in the state,” says Charbonneau.

Tuesday was the first day of the new session and a bill has already been introduced in the statehouse allowing for the sale of alcohol on Sundays in Indiana.

In addition, Charbonneau says he may have legislation to help prevent above ground tank spills. Prevention efforts could include allowing governmental units to know what is stored in the tanks, and their age.

“In the utilities that have these intakes, that are using surface water, to have in place a disaster plan, a response plan, to those kinds of situations,” says Charbonneau.

The legislation would likely contain requirements to have an alternative source of water in the instance an above ground tank spill occurs.

The new session is also leading to the possibility of new e-cigarette regulations. 16th District State Representative Doug Gutwein says he believes legislation pertaining to smokers is a labor issue.

“First they don’t have to hire people that smoke, and then: ‘oh if you’re 5’2 and weigh 300 pounds, you’re not very productive, we don’t have to hire you.’ I just think it’s an issue that we need to step back from,” says Gutwein.

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller says he is working with legislators to craft language to curb e-cigarette use among youth.

The new session is expected to last until late April.