News From Terre Haute, Indiana


May 15, 2011

FLASHPOINT: Trailblazing session strengthens Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS — With this year’s session of the 117th General Assembly in the rear view mirror, it’s time to reflect on how our efforts will impact our most important asset: Indiana’s future.  Despite historic challenges, I believe this session of the General Assembly will be viewed in years to come as one of the most progressive and accomplished legislative efforts in generations.  Hoosiers have much to be thankful for.

Last September, Republican candidates for the House announced our “Strengthen Indiana Plan” which focused on fiscal integrity, job creation, expanding education opportunities and standing up to an overreaching federal government.  Republicans delivered on each of these key initiatives, and much more. 

We pledged to adopt an honestly balanced budget, without the strings and gimmicks of the past, and without a tax increase on Hoosier families or employers.  At midnight on April 29, we delivered.

The new budget not only lives within our state’s means, we exercised the discipline necessary to ensure healthy reserves at the end of each of the next two fiscal years, a position no other state in the nation can claim. We funded critical needs in public safety, care for the indigent and public education at levels exceeding the last two years, and successfully expanded the state’s full-day kindergarten grant program to reach every unfunded school and student in the state. 

We focused education dollars on students rather than institutions, allowing dollars to follow transferring students to their new classroom, and addressed the disparate funding of students in rural, suburban and inner city schools. We instituted locally controlled evaluations for every teacher, allowing schools to recognize, reward and retain the best educators regardless of how long they have been in the classroom.

We opened opportunities for more families, especially those of modest means, to select the school that is best for their child regardless of their income or neighborhood.  The expansion of public charter schools and the creation of a new education choice scholarship will allow families with fewer resources to have the same opportunities their wealthy neighbors already enjoy.

To help Indiana lead the nation in job creation efforts, we balanced the bankrupt unemployment compensation system without bankrupting Hoosier employers; gave local units of government new tools to attract new and expanding employers; and trimmed the corporate tax bill for 22,000 Hoosier employers (including 16,000 small businesses) to help our economy recover faster than our neighbors.

We even did what some said we couldn’t — we adopted fair, common sense legislative and congressional maps on a bipartisan basis, bringing an end to a generation of gerrymandering by our colleagues.

Yes, some will say we “wasted time” on social issues and immigration reform, but these issues impact Hoosiers as well, and the common sense measures we adopted did not distract from our main purpose — moving Indiana dramatically forward. Even a record-breaking Democrat walkout in Urbana didn’t stop us from reaching our goals.

Fiscal integrity, education opportunity and job creation effort is what we promised — and what we delivered. While our neighbors struggle to borrow and tax their way to prosperity, Hoosier Republicans stood firm. Hoosier taxpayers, school children, every day workers and our future will be the beneficiaries.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News Poll
AP Video
Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Small Reactors Could Be Future of Nuclear Energy Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Human Antidepressants Making Shrimp Too Calm NASA Releases Images of "graceful" Solar Flare Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall
NDN Video
Jabari Parker's Top 5 Plays From Duke Career Kourtney Kardashian Is a Bikini Babe More Manpower Than Ever Expected At 4/20 Rally Debunk'd: Miley Cyrus AIDS, Cheeseburgers Cause Cancer, Military Warning Bill Previewing the NBA playoffs Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite My name is Cocaine Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010