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Legislative Priorities 2016

The SJC Chamber monitors public policy activities and takes positions on issues important to the business community. We provide representation at the local, state and federal levels, meeting with public officials on a consistent and continual basis, attending committee meetings and testifying at legislative hearings.

 

2016 state Priorities

The Chamber recognizes that the business climate is critical to driving new economic opportunities in our region. Therefore, it established the following priorities for the 2016 session of the Indiana General Assembly critical to improving the business climate in Indiana.

 

Economic Development

  • Supports the allocation of $42 million of additional proceeds from the Tax Amnesty Fund to the Regional Cities Initiative, and support the continued focus and expansion of the program as a tool for enhancements throughout the state. 
  • Support the protection of economic development tools and innovative programs such as tax increment financing (TIF) districts, enterprise zones and tax phase-in’s for local government entities.

 

Education and Workforce Development

  • Support re-evaluating the A-F grading of schools in Indiana.
  • Ensure that private and or charter schools receiving public funds adhere to the same regulations and admission requirements as public schools.
  • Provide for state testing for Career-Ready Expectations.
  • Support maintaining access to strong dual credit systems in Indiana High Schools.

 

Transportation and Infrastructure Funding

  • Support increasing the state fuel tax and indexing for inflation.
  • Support premise that all money raised through fuel tax is directed to construction, repair and maintenance of roads and highways rather than being directed to the general fund.
  • Support the completion of U.S. 31 to a limited-access highway between Indianapolis and South Bend.
  • Support the upgrade of U.S. 30 to freeway status.
  • Support improvement of U.S. 33 from Fort Wayne to the U.S. 20 Bypass, including passing lanes at key bottleneck points. 
  • Support additional studies and funding for the South Shore Rail Line to reduce travel time between North Central Indiana and Chicago.
  • Support additional funding to enhance and expand air service and facilities at the South Bend International Airport.
  • Support tolling of other limited-access highways throughout Indiana to generate new revenue for construction, repair and maintenance of state’s transportation network.

 

Local Government Funding

  • Grant all Indiana communities the same local revenue producing options currently granted to only a few. A local food and beverage tax is an example of a local tax used by some communities but not available to all.
  • As options for reducing tax impacts are reviewed by state government (such as Business Personal Property Tax repeal), state government should also ensure that comparable replacement revenues are included in the tax relief package.

Track bills at iga.in.gov

 

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