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Dvorak amendment sanctioning Russia for Ukraine invasion headed to governor

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INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana could become the first American state to ban purchases of property by Russian-controlled businesses after the passage of State Representative Ryan Dvorak’s (D-South Bend) amendment to Senate Bill 388, which passed both chambers of the Indiana General Assembly on Tuesday.

Dvorak’s amendment prohibits businesses organized in, or controlled by citizens of, the Russian Federation from purchasing real estate in Indiana for one year. It unanimously passed the House of Representatives last month. The language was clarified in conference committee this week to specify that the moratorium does not apply to Russian citizens who are already legal residents of the United States.

“With this legislation, Indiana has taken the lead in fighting back against the global reach of Russian money laundering which props up a corrupt oligarchy that threatens violence across the world,” Dvorak said. “There is more work to be done, but denying the criminals a place to hide their assets is an important first step. Indiana will not be a safe haven for Vladimir Putin’s ill-gotten gains.”

Dvorak thanked legislators from both parties and both chambers for their bipartisan work on the legislation: “I was very happy to witness the bipartisan commitment to stopping Russian criminality and doing our small part to help to defeat the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“This important step is not the end,” Dvorak said. “I hope that other states will follow suit and that we are able to work together in the next legislative session to create permanent systems that stop the corrosive influence of state-based money laundering.”

If signed by Governor Eric Holcomb, the law will go into effect on July 1, 2022, and ban Russian-controlled entities from purchasing real property in Indiana. It is scheduled to expire in one year but could be extended if necessary.  

The final conference committee report for SB 388 passed the House 96-0 and passed the Senate 49-1 on Tuesday.

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