Lebanon Reporter

State News

March 10, 2014

Tough issues still in hopper for Indiana lawmakers

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A shutdown of the state's energy efficiency program was sent to the governor's desk Monday, but lawmakers were still mulling over other tough issues, including the proposed relaxing of gun regulations, as they entered the final week of their 2014 session.

Senate lawmakers on Monday approved placing the state's energy efficiency program on hold for a year while they study the costs and benefits of the program. That measure now heads to Gov. Mike Pence for consideration.

Supporters of the program, including businesses and environmental groups, say it employs hundreds of workers and saves money for consumers who receive free, in-home energy audits. But opponents of the Energizing Indiana program, led by the state's utilities and major manufacturers, have criticized it as a wasteful tax that is hurting the state's economy.

Senate Utilities Chairman Jim Merritt, R-Indianapolis, originally sought to exempt utilities and manufacturers from the tax that funds the program, but House Republicans changed the measure to eliminate the program altogether. Merritt said he would like a year to study the effectiveness of the energy audits.

"This allows us to look at Energize Indiana. Then the Legislature and the Pence Administration can say it's a terrific program, or maybe it's not," Merritt said.

Meanwhile, House and Senate negotiators spent the morning grilling an opponent of a guns measure that would allow parents to keep guns in their cars while on school property.

A bill to allow properly stowed and hidden guns in school parking lots drew heated debate in a final round of negotiations Monday. The original bill would have banned gun buy-back programs, but a Senate committee effectively gutted the measure and only would prohibit use of state or federal funding for the programs.

Testimony grew tense when members of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America spoke against the bill, which they say will create easier access to guns that could be used in school shootings.

Text Only
State News

Featured items
Click below to browse and order photos


Photos from June 2014

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide