Friday, March 22, 2019
These week, Institute staff had many, many meetings with lawmakers about the remaining issues that we are working on to support low-income families: transforming TANF (SB 440), protecting Hoosiers from a massive expansion of predatory lending (SB 613), enacting common sense land contract protections (HB 1495) and getting Hoosiers back on the road with driver's license suspension reform (SB 210 and HB 1141).
SB 440 is scheduled for "Amend and Vote Only" on Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 8:30 am in Rm 156-C. Amend and Vote only means that they will not take any public testimony as the bill has been heard before. There will be two amendments that we know of: one that extends the start date of each phase in period to coincide with the state's biennial budget, and another that puts some guard rails around the TANF funds that are transferred to the child care voucher program. IIWF supports both of these amendments. You can tune in on Tuesday morning by clicking this link.
Once SB 440 is out of committee it is possible that it will be recommitted to the House Ways and Means committee. IIWF staff are meeting with members of that committee to bring them up to speed just in case it goes these. You can help this committee understand the importance of SB 440 by calling them and asking them to support SB 440 if it is sent to their committee.
On Tuesday evening, Institute staff joined AARP Indiana and Prosperity Indiana at the Indianapolis City-County Council to support Proposal No. 162, calling on the Indiana General Assembly and Governor Holcomb to Reject 613. The resolution passed with unanimous support and was signed by Mayor Hogsett. It followed on the heels of a resolution by the Lake County Council on March 12th.
Our strategy right now is to keep the pressure on House members and to follow up with Senators about their votes on SB 613.
The good news: many lawmakers are very uncomfortable with the current version of SB 613.
The bad news: House members are likely to amend SB 613 in an effort to win enough votes to get it over the finish line.
We urge you to continue sending a strong message to lawmakers to #Reject613. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for updates about the bill and a hearing date.
Land Contract Protections
HB 1495, a bill that includes more transparency for buyers engaged in a land contract to purchase their homes. It includes provisions for these contracts to be recorded (YAY DATA!), requires some disclosures so that buyers understand the condition of the home, its value, and if it has any liens against it, among other provisions. IIWF, in partnership with Prosperity Indiana are supporting the bill. It will be heard in Senate Judiciary on Wednesday, March 27, at 9 AM in the Senate Chamber. You can tune in on Wednesday morning by clicking this link.
HB 1141 and SB 210 both address the high cost of license reinstatement fees and traffic fines, seeking to create a temporary program where those with fines and fees can petition for a reduction in the cost and get back to driving legally. A 2016 report from IU McKinney School of Law found Indiana's fines and fee structures disproportionately impact low-income Hoosiers, leaving nearly 1 in 10 adults over 16 without a legal way to get to work. SB 210 is not yet scheduled for a hearing. HB 1141 is scheduled for a hearing in Senate Tax and Fiscal Policy on Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 10am in room 431. You can watch live here.