BIC MATTERS – Ways and Means Committee Passes HB 1002

TO: BIC Grassroots Network
FROM: Vicki Kitchin
DATE: February 8, 2017

SUBJECT: 1) House Ways and Means Committee Passes HB 1002; 2) Upcoming Town Halls

House Ways and Means Committee Passes HB 1002
Today the House Ways and Means Committee passed HB 1002 on a vote of 14-9. Two Republicans (Reps. Clere and Davisson) and all Democrats present at the time voted against the bill (Rep. Klinker was excused). The committee did approve an amendment offered by Chairman Tim Brown that moves all the sales tax collected on fuel purchases to the highway accounts beginning in FY 2018, rather than phasing this in over four years. This is a positive amendment as it means more funds will be available sooner for road and bridge improvements. While this is a key component of the House Democrat proposal to fund roads, none of the Democrats on the committee supported the amendment.

Representative Ed Soliday, chairman of the Roads and Transportation Committee, explained the bill and Chairman Brown also allowed limited testimony. BIC, local government representatives, Indiana Farm Bureau, Indiana State Building and Construction Trades and the Indiana State Chamber of Commerce all spoke in favor of the bill. No one testified against the bill.

HB 1002 will be eligible for amendment by the full House of Representatives next week. We do not know yet when the bill author will call it for this step, known as “2nd Reading.”

We still have a long way to go in the legislative process, but today’s vote by the House Ways and Means Committee is significant. HB 1002 provides long-term, dedicated, stable funding for Indiana roads and bridges. BIC thanks Chairman Tim Brown, Chairman Ed Soliday and all those members of Ways and Means who voted in favor of this bill today. If your legislator was one of those voting in favor, please reach out to them with a big “Thank You.”

Town Hall Meetings for this Weekend
Speaking of showing support to our legislators, we’ve been getting good feedback from several of you on the Town Hall meetings from around the state. Legislators very much appreciate it when supporters of HB 1002 attend these meetings. We need BIC members at every one of these meetings. On this week’s list you’ll find meetings on Friday, February 10 in Fishers, LaPorte, Elkhart and Terre Haute. On Saturday, February 11 meetings are in Lebanon, Evansville, Huntington, Martinsville and Fort Wayne. On Monday, February 13 there’s a meeting in Anderson and on Tuesday, February 14 there’s one in New Palestine. Attend these meetings, share your support for HB 1002, and contact BIC with feedback.

Finally, remember to register for Road Funding Day at the Statehouse on February 21. Thank you.