Successful Legislative Initiatives
Prime Supporter: Regional Chamber proposed the language used in the bill. The bill is consistent with the Policy Priorities of the Regional Chamber, which we supported with written or oral testimony, advocated (or opposed) with legislators or caucus, and was included in the board-approved legislative agenda.
Primary Supporter: Regional Chamber supported with written or oral testimony, advocated support (or opposition) with legislators or caucus, consistent with Policy Priorities, included in board-approved legislative agenda.
Supporter: Regional Chamber advocated for or against legislators or caucus, consistent with Policy Priorities. It was not specifically included in the legislative agenda.
(2022) 1002: (Win) Regional Chamber was Prime Supporter as we recommended language re: elimination of the 30% floor of business personal property. We also supported the repeal of utility receipts taxes and staged a reduction of personal income taxes.
(2022) 1003: (Win) Regional Chamber is a Prime Supporter as we worked with Rep. Dan Leonard to draft language that permits certain academic institutions to increase their enrollment rate for some healthcare students by not more than one hundred – percent (100%).
(2022) 1245: (Win) Regional Chamber was a Prime Supporter as we recommended language regarding residential sewage systems, provided written testimony, and advocated for the bill. Prohibits a local health department from refusing an application for a permit for a residential onsite sewage system solely because the residential onsite sewage system has not been used previously in the jurisdiction of the local health department or is unfamiliar to the local health department if the department’s technical review panel has approved the residential onsite sewage system for general use in Indiana.
(2022) 1318 (WIN) Regional Chamber was a Prime Supporter as we consulted on language, offered advocacy with legislators, and the bill is consistent with our Policy Priorities and our legislative agenda. The bill exempts childcare programs operated by a public or private school. It provides daycare on-premises for children of students or employees of schools in the school corporation from licensure as a childcare facility. We believe this may be a critical step in expanding childcare as a business issue in years ahead.
(2022) 5: (Win) Regional Chamber was a Primary Supporter of this bill, authored by Senator Liz Brown. The bill is consistent with our Policy Priorities and will help expand certain Indiana healthcare professions. Allows an applicant with a license or certificate from another state or jurisdiction to be granted a license or certificate in Indiana.
(2022) 145 (Win) Regional Chamber was a Primary Supporter of this bill, authored by Senator Travis Holdman. Requires real property tax assessments of “self-service storage facilities” be based upon a True Tax Value based solely on the land and improvements, less normal depreciation, and normal obsolescence, and must exclude intangible business value.
(2022) 408: (WIN) Regional Chamber was a Supporter of this bill, authored by Senator Andy Zay and sponsored in the House by Representatives Martin Carbaugh and Matt Lehman. The bill amends the statute authorizing a bank or trust company to make investments in community-based economic development and allows investments in any community economic development entity, community development project, or tax equity finance transaction
HB 1025 (2021): (Primary Supporter) Enterprise Zone renewals for an additional five years.
HB 1238 (2021): (Primary Supporter)Establish the Northeast Indiana Regional Strategic Development Commission. Provides for the appointment of Commission members.
HB 1393 (2021): (Primary Supporter)Modifies the definition of an Entertainment Complex from 800 to 600 seats.
HB 1449 (2021): (Primary Supporter)Broadband Development. Amends’s statute governing the award of grants from the Rural Broadband Fund includes terrestrial broadband infrastructure to (A) buildings used by public school corporations primarily for educating students; (B) rural health clinics, and various other changes.
SB 1 (2021): (Prime Supporter)Provides for Civil Immunity related to COVID Virus.
SB 3 (2021): (Prime Supporter)Telehealth Matters
SB 377 (2021): (Supporter)Broadband Connectivity is expanding the availability of broadband connectivity.
US Route 30 (2021): Provides for PEL STUDY to begin transforming US 30 into a Freeway.
Purdue University FW (2021): Establish three new programs that will benefit students and employers of NEIN.
Post-Secondary Education (2021): Retain and expand student scholarships for two-year and four-year vocational and academic Education.
HB 1004 (2021): (Supporter) Small Business Restart Program; Establishes Hoosier Hospitality small business restart program.
HB 1008 (2021): (Supporter) Student Learning Recovery Grant Program ($150 million from the general fund)
HB 1009 (2021): (Supporter) TANF Program; provides income earned by a certain individual pursuing a post-secondary degree, workforce certificate, pre-apprenticeship, or apprenticeship may not disqualify a TANF-eligible family from receiving benefits.
HB 1190 (2021): (Supporter) Makes certain changes to the maximum gross vehicle weight limit.
SB 2 (2021): (Supporter) Funding for virtual instruction in public schools
SB 29 (2021): (Primary Opposition) At the request of Agribusiness members, we opposed it would have discouraged agribusiness in rural counties. Senate Committee did not hear the bill.
SB 44 (2021): (Opposed) Workshare, the Committee on Pensions and Labor did not call the bill
SB 303 (2021): (Primary Opposition) Offered written testimony and encouraged the governor to veto. He did as this bill would have damaged rural investment and harmed the rural economy.
SB 384 (2021): (Primary Supporter) Professional Sports and Convention Development Area in Allen County.
HB 1056 (2020): (Primary Supporter) Technical corrections and changes to make SEA 566 (2019 Win) viable as an economic development tool.
HB 1331 (2020): (Prime Opponent) Opposed this bill as it contained provisions that our members believed were harmful to a certain quality of place assets. We won when the bill died in the House without being called down for a vote.
HB 1112 (2020): (Supporter) Provides that wage increases with a participating employee or group of participating employees negotiated by an agreement regardless of timing qualify as a wage increase for eligibility purposes for a grant from the Skills Enhancement Fund.
HB 1111 (2020): (Prime Supporter) Unemployment; retain employers’ payments to the Unemployment Trust Fund Level for the next five years. Rates had been scheduled to decrease under prior law. However, retention of current rates will bring long-term stability to the trust fund.
Bias Crimes Sentencing (2019): Supported legislation; passed into law, permitting judges to impose harsher sentences for criminals who victimize others based upon listed traits, including race, religion, disability, nationality, and sexual orientation.
Create 35-year Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District (2019): Primary supporter; passed into law for repurposing two or more buildings or a site that once had such structures that are or were 75 years old where manufacturing previously occurred.
Extend EDGE Credits to Indiana employers Non-Residents (2019): Primary Supporter; passed into law, permitting Northeast Indiana employers to use this tool for Indiana employees residing in states with mutual economic assistance agreements, such as Ohio and Michigan.
Regional Redevelopment Tax Credit (2019): (Primary Supporter) passed into law establishes a $50 million redevelopment tax credit administered by IEDC for the investment and redevelopment or rehabilitation of real property, with a cap of $7 million per single project.
Venture Capital Investment (VCI) Tax Credit (2019): (Primary Sponsor) passed into law allows a taxpayer to assign all or part of a venture capital tax credit. Supports investment into entrepreneurial enterprises.
Rural Broadband Fund (2019): Supported legislation; passed into law, establishing a $100 million fund to provide grants for rural areas. The Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA) will establish procedures for awarding grants from the funds after July 31st, 2019.
Hoosier Business Investment (HBI) Tax Credit (2019): Supported legislation, amending HBI to include retooled or refurbished machinery, new energy conservation, pollution control equipment, and new onsite digital manufacturing equipment.
Regional Development Authorities (2019): Supported Legislation that allows governmental entities to form a Regional Development Authority (RDA) with boards comprised of Executives of member cities, towns, and counties.
Participating units of government would be required to impose either a special local income tax rate or a food and beverage tax at rates specified in the development authority plan. Secured referral to a summer study committee as Northeast Indiana has an RDA that performed exceptionally through the Regional Cities program. We believe that the members of this RDA should determine if it wants to maintain the current structure or adopt a new format.
Residential Tax Increment Financing (2019): Primary Supporter, passed into law; this measure creates a tool for communities to support the development of Workforce Attainable Housing. The legislation defines “Residential Housing” or Workforce Housing as single-family dwelling units enough to secure quality housing reasonably close to employment.
Prekindergarten Programs (2019): Supported Legislation; passed into law, extending the Pilot Program, which the Regional Chamber of Northeast Indiana has consistently supported, into all eleven counties of Northeast Indiana and to eligible providers throughout the balance of the state. It also expands eligibility for the program by increasing the income eligibility threshold.
State and Local Incentives for Data Centers (2019): Supported Legislation; passed into law, providing a county or municipal fiscal body may designate an area where a property tax exemption will be provided for certain enterprise information technology equipment. Provides a state sale and use tax exemption for purchasing certain data center equipment for investments of a minimum of $25 million to $150 million, depending upon county population.
Support NEIN Enterprise Zone (2017): Ft. Wayne is the only community that has established an Enterprise Zone. The Regional Chamber of Northeast Indiana secured $1 million to fund a Pilot Entrepreneurship Zone.
Expansion of Pre-Kindergarten Program (2017): Supported passage.
Infrastructure Funding (2017): Supported the bill, including Indexing, a policy we advanced in 2015.
IDEM Regulatory Reform (2016): Passed reform establishing that no IDEM rule can be more stringent than a corresponding federal rule without review by the Indiana General Assembly.
Repeal Throwback Tax (2015): Exempt all sales originating from third-party logistics providers and the tax on all manufactured goods exported to a country where the seller is not subject to taxation.
Re-designate IPFW as a Metropolitan multi-system campus from a regional campus (2015): Secured to establish the opportunity to create advanced degree programs consistent with the regional economy.
Historic Renovation Grant Program (2015): Supported elimination of ineffective State Historic Tax Credit Program, which also created a more effective grant program that increased state support of Historic Renovation by 300%.
Repeal 30% Depreciation Floor for new business equipment (2015):
Eliminates the 30% rule and establishes taxation based on the depreciation schedule.
Connect NEIN to Lt. Governor’s Rural Broadband Working Group (2014):
Supported and passed, then participated in the group that established Broad Band Ready Certification requirements.
Allen County Single County Executive (2014): Supported and passed authorization from General Assembly on the referendum.
Lafayette Center Road (2014): Secured $30 million to fund the expansion of County Road 900 N as the number 1 transportation issue.
Logistic Tax Credit (2014): Passed the tax credit to enhance the competitiveness of the growing NE Indiana Logistics and Distribution sector.
Right to Work (2012): Primary supporter; passed into law. The act eliminates the requirement for mandatory union membership.