Investments in human infrastructure: House Democrats’ budget proposal bolsters health, education and quality-of-life funding

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Today, House Republicans rejected efforts by Rep. Gregory W. Porter (D-Indianapolis), ranking Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, and House Democrats to craft a state biennial budget that works for working Hoosiers.

Porter offered a master amendment to the House Republican-proposed budget that would have bolstered the programs and initiatives that Hoosiers want and removed additional handouts for special interests. House Republicans rejected it by a 62-28 vote. 

“A state where people want to live is a state where businesses want to operate,” Porter said. “Our budget recommendations would have boosted human infrastructure in Indiana and made tangible improvements to Hoosiers’ public health, education and economic wellbeing.”

Highlights from Porter’s amendment include:

  1. Additional property tax relief for Hoosiers;
    1. $200 homestead credit to provide relief for CY 2023 billings using state funds, not local property tax dollars
    2. Permanent increase to the standard homestead deduction from $48,000 to $56,000
  2. Complete support of traditional K-12 public schools and cradle-to-career education;

    1. Transition On My Way Pre-K pilot program to statewide universal pre-K program 
    2.  10% supplemental complexity index payment for all schools tied to the most recent school funding formula allocation
    3. Establishes and funds a new school counselor grant program with any unspent appropriated tuition support dollars set to revert to the general fund at fiscal year close-out
    4. $5 increase per credit hour for dual credit for all universities providing dual credit programs
  3. Fully funding the Governor’s Public Health Commission and other public health initiatives; and

    1. $1 million each for a doula assistance program and maternal mortality program with emphasis on communities of color to close the gap on health outcome disparities
    2. Elimination of sales tax on feminine hygiene products and adult diapers
  4. Making government work for Hoosiers through increased accountability, transparency and public financing measures.

    1. Limits IEDC cash grant program to $300 million for the biennium instead of $600 million
    2. Permits bonding to be utilized for state capital project overruns instead of appropriating $1.25 billion in cash for those projects
    3. Does not transfer an addition $1 billion to Pre-1996 TRF

“Our budget would have given Hoosiers a hand up – not a handout,” Porter said. “From education to public health, we can do a better job of empowering people with the resources they need to lead full, healthy lives. I’m disappointed House Republicans chose to vote against Hoosiers this afternoon.”  

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