Celebrating this session’s accomplishments




The end of the legislative session, also known as Sine Die, has finally come after months of working on Indiana’s biennial budget and other House Republican priorities. We have worked diligently to develop and pass legislation that remains accountable to Hoosier taxpayers, students, teachers, families and more. I am very excited to discuss some of those accomplishments with you, which will improve the quality of life for Hoosiers in our community.


Serving as a member of the Ways and Means Committee, which was tasked with gathering input on the budget, was a great opportunity to get even more involved with the legislative process this year. Along with crafting the budget, serving on this committee allowed me to advocate for southwest Indiana, ensuring your voices were heard at the Statehouse. After analyzing revenue forecasts, listening to numerous testimonies and debating the needs of the state, I am proud to say we crafted and passed an honestly balanced budget –just minutes before our statutory deadline.


It prioritizes education funding by including the largest increase to education in state history. Additionally, the budget protects Indiana’s AAA credit rating by maintaining healthy reserves. These reserve funds are critical to ensuring we have a financial cushion in the event of another recession. We held firm to our commitment to fiscal integrity, which is essential for the success of Hoosier businesses.


State funding was also included in the budget for Indiana University medical school in Evansville. The biennial budget provides $25 million to support this project, which will not only benefit our community but the entire state as well. These priorities support our dedication to economic development and the progress of Indiana.


The budget also funds legislation I authored to combat Indiana’s unacceptably high infant mortality rate (IMR). IMR is based upon the number of infants who die before reaching their first birthday per every 1,000 births. The Safety P.I.N. (Protecting Indiana’s Newborns) legislation, which was sent to the governor’s desk just this week, establishes a grant program to incentivize organizations to develop innovative plans to reduce Indiana’s IMR.


Research shows that lack of prenatal care and smoking during pregnancy can lead to low birth weight and preterm labor. These are some of the leading causes of infant mortality. Additionally, the grant program will give preference to proposals that target those causes in an effort to combat this problem in the most effective way possible.


Organizations that apply for Safety P.I.N. grants must include their regional or demographic targeted area, the specific amount they will reduce Indiana’s IMR and the time frame in which they plan to achieve the IMR reduction. These organizations will be able to utilize a portion of their grant to pay for ongoing expenses while receiving the remaining amount upon achieving their goal. The grant encourages private and public groups to form partnerships to come up with the most effective solutions.


Working in our state’s capital has been a gratifying experience, and I am so thankful for your support and the support of my family. During the rest of the year, I hope you will continue to reach out to me by contacting my office at h78@iga.in.gov or 317-232-9671. I have enjoyed representing House District 78, but I am very much looking forward to spending more time in district while continuing my service to our community.