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Bill Watch

Bill Watch

Bill Watch is a service of the IndyBar Legislative Committee. During each week of the legislative session, the IndyBar will distribute an updated report, through the support of Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, to its members indicating the progress and recent actions taken on the bills being monitored by the association.

Bill Tracking Reports:
Commercial and Bankruptcy
Estate Planning and Administrative 
Family Law
Government Practice
Health Care and Life Sciences
Sports and Entertainment
Real Estate

Please contact Legislative Committee Chair Mindy Westrick with any questions or concerns.

2020 Bill Watch Reports

March 9, 2020
This week, the House and Senate finalized second and third reading bills and began their conference committee schedules. The legislature held 21 conference committees between Wednesday and Thursday and have 13 scheduled for Monday already. Session is still set to adjourn on Wednesday, March 11th, but they must adjourn by March 14th.

Feb. 28, 2020
Next week marks the final week of consideration in the 2nd house.  Second reading deadlines are Monday, March 3nd and third reading deadlines are Tuesday, March 4th.  Conference Committees begin in earnest and interested parties will begin hammering out what language lives and dies.  As you know, this time of the session always proves to be fast and furious.  Please let us know if you have any questions.  Let the “March Madness” begin!

Feb. 21, 2020
Monday begins the last week of regular committee hearings before conference committees start on March 4th. Time flies when you are having fun! Neither chamber spent much time on the floor this week. Both the House and Senate were in and out in about an hour each day.  They did manage to move a handful of bills. Both houses were much more active in Committee.  Next week will be hectic. March 2 is the second reading deadline and March 3 is the third reading deadline for both chambers. The General Assembly must sine die no later than March 14th but we still fully anticipate an end date of March 11th. 

Feb. 14, 2020
Legislators settled in slowly after their mid-session break with only 30 bills heard in committee this week. Both chambers were in session throughout the week but no bills were heard on the floor. We are expecting next week to pick up quickly with 50 bills scheduled to be heard in committee thus far. We will also begin seeing bills on second reading in both the House and the Senate beginning on Monday. We have two weeks left of committees until conference committees begin on March 4th. The anticipated Sine Die date is Wednesday, March 11th. 

Feb. 7, 2020
The Indiana General Assembly is officially at the half-way point of the 2020 session. 

Lawmakers in the Senate carried debate well into the late hours of the evening on Monday and Tuesday as they met their second and third reading deadlines. The House finished their deadlines on Monday afternoon. At this point, if a bill did not meet the second or third reading deadline, it is now dead.

Lawmakers will now head home for a few days and return to business promptly on Monday, February 10th. Bills will switch chambers next week and begin getting assigned to committees for a proper hearing. 

Jan. 30, 2020
Second reading deadline came and went on Thursday this week in the House. All bills that failed to reach the House floor out of committee are now dead. Second reading deadline in the Senate is Monday, February 3. Third reading deadline is Monday in the House, and Tuesday, February 4, in the Senate.  This marks the half way point for the 2020 Indiana General Assembly. 

In the House, we saw extensive debate on a coal industry bill, HB1414, that would allow the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to be able to block an electric utility from shutting down a power plant if the company can’t show it was either required by a federal mandate or is otherwise necessary. The provisions of the bill would sunset in 2021. It passed second reading without amendments and is on the third reading calendar on Monday.

Across the hall, the Senate passed a pharmacy benefit managers regulation that received its fair share of debate on the floor. Senate Bill 241 would mandate licensure of PBMs by the Department of Insurance. This would give the DOI authority to decide investigatory and audit processes for PBMs. The bill passed on third reading and has been referred to the House. In the House, a similar bill passed on Second reading. HB1042 would require PBMs to acquire a  license through the Department of Insurance and mandates extensive reporting to the DOI by PBMs.

In the local government and utilities world, Senate Bill 23 passed on third reading and has been referred to the House. SB23 would require municipalities that want to annex territory to submit signatures of 51% of the population of the new territory or signatures of the owners of 70% of the taxable land before the annexation can proceed. 

House Bill 1165 is making its way to the Senate. This bill deals with language regarding landlords and sewer utilities. Under the bill, landlords cannot be held responsible for anything except for the sewer bill. 

Next week legislators will head home on Tuesday evening for some much needed rest and recovery before returning to finish the second half by mid-March. 

Jan. 24, 2020
It was an incredibly busy week at the Statehouse.  On Wednesday alone, 81 bills were heard in committee.

This week at our State Capitol, Indiana legislators fought for tougher penalties for Indiana stores who sell smoking or vaping products to anyone younger than 21. On the Senate floor, lawmakers voted  38-9 in favor of Senate Bill 1 (Tobacco and Vaping Smoking Age.) This bill triples retailer fines to between $600 and $3,000. 

Across the hall, the House of Representatives voted in support of a similar bill, House Bill 1006 (Regulation of Tobacco Products), with different retailer penalties and new language to conform with the new federal law regarding the smoking and vaping age. 

Both bills will now switch chambers and began being heard in the respective committees. Soon, the House and Senate will need to come to an agreement for one version of the bill. 

Committees this week also advanced a myriad of legislation regarding surprise medical bills, education, and utilities. 

The half-way mark of session is upon us.

Jan. 17, 2020
The 2020 session is progressing at a torrid pace. 

The Statehouse was full of action this week as the Governor presented the State of the State on Tuesday, followed on Wednesday by the Chief Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court presenting her State of the Judiciary remarks. 

The Governor addressed six major topics. These included putting teacher pay off until 2021, banning hand-held cellphone use while driving, raising the smoking age to 21, creating an adoption unit within the Department of Child Services, addressing the infant mortality rate and investing $400 million into the Fiat-Chrysler facility in Kokomo. 

Lawmakers voted in both chambers on Wednesday to advance bills that raise the smoking vaping age from 18 to 21.  The House version tripled the fines for selling tobacco and vaping products to underage Hoosiers. 

SB 23 that halts annexation altogether was heard in Local Government in the Senate and now will move to the full Senate for Second Reading.

SB 254, which addresses water utility charges, was passed out of the Senate Utilities Committee this week as well. Next week promises to bring much debate in the utility space as several bills relating to coal production and electricity production issues are do to be heard in the House Utilities Committee.  

Next week will be just as busy as we move to the last week and a half for bills to be heard in the chamber of origin. 

Second Reading deadline is Thursday, January 30 in the House and  Monday, February 3 in the Senate. Third Reading deadline is Monday, February 3 in the House and Tuesday, February 4 in the Senate.

Jan. 10, 2020
Lawmakers, lobbyists and constituents gathered at the Statehouse this week to begin the annual legislative session that by law, must end by March 14. Legislators will have hundreds of bills to consider this year and wasted no time getting started. Major topics discussed this week included age of purchase for tobacco, healthcare affordability, pricing and transparency, multiple education matters and issues concerning local government. Session is expected to speed up on Monday so we are expecting an intense few weeks ahead. 


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