Statehouse Report 2
Jan. 24, 2013
The second week of the legislative session was very busy with the inauguration of Gov. Mike Pence and the presentation of his budget recommendations to the State Budget Committee (discussed below). Hundreds of additional bills were introduced and with the increased volume of bills, many committee hearings were held.
Governor's budget recommendations
Consideration of budget recommendations by the State Budget Committee is the second step in the biennial budget process for higher education institutions -- preceded by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education biennial recommendations, which were adopted in December. Typically, the budget recommendations are a starting point for the budget process. For higher education, Pence recommended a 1.6 percent increase in total university operating funds for the first year of the biennium. The recommendations adopt the Indiana Commission for Higher Education performance funding metrics and methodology. Thus, the funding amounts for Indiana University vary by campus. For example for FY 2014, the results range from a 5.8 percent increase at the East campus to a 1.5 percent decrease at the Southeast campus.
No new capital projects were authorized; however, funding for IU projects previously authorized but not yet started was recommended -- $45 million for the Northwest Tamarack Hall (a joint project with Ivy Tech) and $21 million for Bloomington Core Campus project. The recommendations also included facility repair and rehabilitation funds that would provide IU with about $16 million for the biennium.
The next step in the biennial budget process will be development of the House version of the biennial budget, which should occur mid-to-late February.
Through the end of the week, 621 Senate bills and 350 House bills were introduced. Here are a few of the bills that IU will be monitoring during the legislative session.
HB 1001 Biennial Budget Bill: The budget bill includes Indiana University appropriations and typically provides authorization for capital projects, if any. As introduced, the bill simply flat-lines all appropriations at the FY 2013 level, merely representing a starting point for budget negotiations.
HB 1002 Indiana Career Council: The bill would establishes the Indiana Career Council to: (1) increase the cohesion among the various participants in the state's education, job skills development and career training system; (2) match the education and skills training provided by the state's education, job skills development and career training system with existing and future needs of the state's job market; and (3) submit recommendations to the General Assembly concerning proposed changes to the state's education, job skills and career training system to increase coordination and information sharing among the state, local and private agencies, groups and associations that are involved in education, job skills development and career training. The bill would also establish by statute the Indiana Workforce Intelligence System, a statewide longitudinal data system containing educational and workforce information to improve the state's educational delivery system, increase economic opportunities for the state's workforce and guide state and local decision-makers.
HB 1005 Remediation: Provides that, no later than July 1, 2013, the State Board of Education, in consultation with the Education Roundtable, the Commission for Higher Education and the Department of Workforce Development, shall develop guidelines to identify a student who is likely to: (1) fail a graduation examination; or (2) require remedial work at a postsecondary educational institution or workforce training program. Provides that a student must pass a college and career readiness exam before the student may enroll in a dual credit course and, after June 30, 2014, a student must achieve an equivalent of a 2.0 on a 4.0 GPA grading scale for the student to receive postsecondary credit on a dual credit course or double-up program course. After June 30, 2014, a student who receives a graduation waiver and obtains a general curriculum diploma is disqualified from receiving any state scholarships, grants or assistance administered by the Commission for Higher Education.
HB 1175 Search Fee for Public Records Requests: Allows a state or local government public agency to charge a fee for any records search in excess of two hours. Provides that the search fee must be an hourly fee that does not exceed the lesser of the hourly rate of the person making the search or $20 per hour.
HB 1245 Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne: Requires the Commission for Higher Education to approve the establishment of not more than six graduate degree programs aligned with industries identified as target industries for regional economic development and a baccalaureate degree program in insurance and risk management at the Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne campus.
HB 1295 Indiana University School of Public Health: Changes references to the Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Public Health to the School of Public Health, reflecting the recent conversion of the department to a full school.
HB 1309 State Board of Education and Roundtable: Requires the State Board of Education to elect a member to serve as vice chairperson, who presides over meetings in the absence of the state superintendent of public instruction. Provides that the commissioner for higher education serves as a third co-chairperson of the education roundtable.
HB 1314 Proprietary Education: Provides that the executive officer of the Commission for Higher Education may develop procedures for authorizing out-of-state public and not-for-profit degree-granting institutions to offer instructional or educational services or training in Indiana. Provides that a person may not do business as a degree-granting institution in Indiana unless the institution is accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or is seeking and progressing toward accreditation or the institution exclusively offers religious educational instruction.
HB 1316 Higher Education Stipends: Establishes the high-need student teaching stipend fund to provide funds to enable students to teach upon graduation in accredited schools in Indiana in special education or high-need fields. Establishes the minority student teaching stipend fund to provide stipends to minority students who will participate in student teaching as part of their degree requirements. Repeals the nursing scholarship fund and the minority teacher or special education services scholarship fund.
HB 1342 Office of Accountability and Innovation: Establishes the Office of Accountability and Innovation responsible for establishing and maintaining a longitudinal data system that contains record level educational and workforce data from all levels of education and the state's workforce and administering the choice scholarship program.
HB 1348 Administration of State Scholarships and Grants: The bill, proposed by the Commission for Higher Education, which is now responsible for administering the state's student financial assistance programs, makes numerous changes in these programs.
SB 578 Contract Review by State Budget Committee: Requires the board of trustees of a state educational institution to submit a proposed lease, financing or other capital asset-related agreement to the budget committee for review if the agreement pertains to a capital asset having a value of more than $500,000.
Looking ahead to next week
Pence gave his State of the State address to a joint session of the General Assembly on Tuesday, outlining his priorities for the state.
With most bills introduced, we expect the volume of bills in committee to increase and consideration of bills on second and third reading will begin in earnest on the floors of the House and Senate.