Indiana lawmakers drawing close on remaining measures

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The leaders of the Indiana General Assembly said Tuesday they will continue meeting daily with Gov. Mike Pence to hammer out a broad range of issues before the 2013 session ends.

Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, and House Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, said Tuesday they have been working on a wide range of issues with the governor.

"There are a lot of loose ends we all need to come together on and there is a variety of them," Long said. "We're going to meet again today, we're going to meet again tomorrow and that's normal."

Lawmakers are hoping to wrap up work Friday. But they will first have to agree on the shape of the state's next biennial budget, any oversight of the $2.8 billion Rockport coal gasification project, the expansion of school vouchers, the potential expansion of gambling and a handful of other measures.

The Rockport deal — the state previously agreed to buy synthetic natural gas from the plant for 30 years — would be sent to utility regulators for a review of any impact on Indiana ratepayers under a House and Senate compromise, Bosma said.

The addition of table games at Indiana's two racetracks looks increasingly unlikely, but riverboats could still be cleared to put their operations on land, he said. Adding table games to any gambling bill would surely draw a veto from Pence.

"If someone wants to have a gaming enhancement bill vetoed, I would encourage them to have that in there," he said.

Long and Bosma say they are close to approving a budget. A compromise between the House and Senate versions could be distributed to lawmakers as early as Thursday morning.

The three Republicans — Bosma, Long and Pence — have all agreed that the budget should include $500 million in tax cuts, but the final shape of that plan is yet to be seen.


  • Energy
    Duke/Coal gasification plant. We're on rate tariff RS (residential). To understand it all I had to contact Duke and request the "unbundled" version. I was shocked when I seen our portion we pay for the Duke coal gasification plant. The customer cost is $0.008116 per KWh. Since being in Florida for the month, we only consumed 449, however our cost for the month was $3.64 for the plant Mitch and our State people approved without our approval...What a rip off. There're are nearly 200 homes in our development. If each home averaged using 1200 KWh per month, Duke and Mitch just drained from the economy of this development alone $25,000.00, that could have been spent on other neccessary needs...
  • What a Mistake
    Will someone explain to us non-gamblers how using live dealers instead of a video dealer babe/dude is an expansion of gaming? Gov. Pence seems to think it is and will therefore veto it, but he has proven to be a really dim bulb, so we can't count on mental acuity from him. I'm so sorry I voted for him, although the other guy beat Pence to the draw in the showdown of simpletons. Can't wait for next primary!!!

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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.