(INDIANAPOLIS) – Legislators have a few issues left to resolve as they approach Wednesday’s finish line.
Legislators still need to finalize bills on panhandling, surprise billing, a controversial teacher externship requirement, and the future of Attorney General Curtis Hill, among others. The legal deadline to adjourn isn’t until Saturday, so legislators are able — and likely — to work into the wee hours of the morning.
House Speaker Todd Huston says the toughest issue to resolve appears to be a bill to force Indy’s bus system to keep a promise to add some private funding. A Senate-passed amendment would slash state support equal to the 10-percent which IndyGo was supposed to raise privately. Huston says negotiators are trying to find a balance that ensures IndyGo can make its bond payments.
While the bill is one of several prompted by Indianapolis issues, it’s intertwined with a northwest Indiana transit bill.
Huston says there won’t be any bills to address the coronavirus outbreak. He says he double-checked with the Holcomb administration over the weekend, and says the health department is confident it has the legal authority and funding it needs to respond to the outbreak.
The bill to increase penalties for selling tobacco to minors is unexpectedly still on legislators’ to-do list. They’ve reopened the bill to tweak the size of a required buffer zone between smoke shops and schools. The revised bill should come to a vote Wednesday.