Goodin on 2018 session of the Indiana General Assembly: “It was a dog’s breakfast”

March 15, 2018 Terry Goodin

INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana House Democratic Leader Terry Goodin from Austin today issued the following statement about the 2018 session of the Indiana General Assembly:

“This year, the Legislature did pass a bill banning tattooing eyeballs, even though I don’t believe there has been a single instance of it happening in Indiana. We did not pass anything to improve the state agency that is failing in its responsibility to protect at-risk children ‘because there wasn’t enough time.’

“This year, the Legislature talked a lot about doing something to end the opioid crisis and drug addiction facing our state. Then we passed legislation to let people buy liquor on Sunday.

“I could go on, but I think those circumstances should give a fair indication of the value that Hoosiers got from this session. It was a waste of time, a dog’s breakfast that should provide plenty of ammunition for those folks who question the necessity of even having a short session.

“I am sure that many people will take the time to list some highlights of this session, and maybe even show a little pride in what’s been done. To them, the best response I can offer is, ‘Really?’

“What did we accomplish to improve the training of our workforce? Well, we did pass a workforce bill, but I am confounded to tell you what it will accomplish, apart from adding to the bureaucracy. Will what we passed give Hoosiers the skills needed to advance themselves?

“How many more burdens can we place on our public schools? Some will say we gave schools more funding, but let’s be honest: that’s funding they were already due. There are still too many schools across this state that have been short-changed on funding. Our children are suffering the tragic results of years of school funding formulas that have cared little about public schools.

“And election reform? Forget about it. We were told there was no time to do anything about independent redistricting…although there is a possibility that we could study the topic. You know, just like we studied it a couple of years ago, and came up with an idea that seemed to gain traction on both sides of the aisle until the powers that be decided that we didn’t need to act on it.

“This session wasn’t a complete waste. Doing something to guard against sexual harassment in government would not even have been an issue this year without the input of Democrats in both the House and Senate.

“And let’s applaud the commitment demonstrated by one group of Hoosiers who had a dream and fought to make it become reality. I am speaking, of course, about the kids from Cumberland Elementary School in West Lafayette, who have worked for nearly five years to see the Say’s Firefly become our state insect.

“Perhaps they could offer a few tips to improve the legislative process to the adults in charge of the Indiana General Assembly. The grown-ups sure dropped the ball this year.”