This is the last issue of the Update that will contain Indiana news, as I’ve moved to Kansas and we haven’t secured a new volunteer as of yet. A huge thank you to all of you who made northwest Indiana a cool and invigorating place to live! I’ve enjoyed getting to know many of you all up and down the political spectrum over the past few years, and you’ve given me hope for Indiana and the country. Stay informed an keep fighting for facts!
IF YOU WANT TO HELP: It typically takes an hour a week to write this Update. All you need is a computer or tablet (I’ve even done simple versions of them on my phone if it’s a busy travel week), and you can write them from wherever you are! To get more details, you can contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, or get in touch with our President, Kim Eldridge, at email@example.com
In the meantime, I’ll continue to publish legislative news on the national level.
HOW DID YOUR MOCs VOTE LAST WEEK?
H.R. 35: Emmett Till Anti-lynching Act (PASSED House)
H.R. 2339: Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act of 2019 (PASSED House)
S. 311: Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (FAILED Cloture)
S. 3275: Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (FAILED Cloture)
Here’s a sample of the dozen or so pieces of legislation up for consideration in the full House or Senate this coming week:
H.R. 5932: Ensuring Chinese Debt Transparency Act of 2020
This bill would press for the US to use its influence with creditor banks worldwide to better track the terms and conditions of loans made by China to debtor nations (presumably including the US), a process which is often not transparent.
H.R. 4351: Yes In My Backyard Act
While not requiring any specific policy action per se, this bill would require local governments to go on the record with their rationale in creating certain housing and land-use policies. The goal result would be to encourage local governments to adopt more policies friendly to affordable and anti-discriminatory housing, and to decrease barriers to home-based businesses and AirBnB-type operations.
H.R. 5003: Fair Debt Collection Practices for Servicemembers Act
” To amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to provide enhanced protection against debt collector harassment of members of the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.”
S. 2657: Advanced Geothermal Innovation Leadership Act of 2019
” A bill to support innovation in advanced geothermal research and development, and for other purposes.”
STATE OF INDIANA
And in other news:
Indiana utilities now support a bill aimed at managing coal plant retirements after the most controversial provisions were removed by a state Senate committee. (Utility Dive)
A federal agency has awarded more than $1.3 million to boost Indiana’s efforts to expand access to care, treatment and medication for people infected with HIV and to fund prevention services. (Times of Northwest Indiana)
Further proof that living in a “pro-life” state doesn’t mean we care about women OR babies (sorry for the personal opinion, couldn’t help myself), Indiana’s infant and maternal mortality rates outpace poor countries such as Vietnam and Iraq, but bills addressing maternal health didn’t get far in the 2020 session of the state’s General Assembly. (News and Tribune)
Bills dealing with the landlord-tenant issues, the state Board of Accounts, abortion and education were among those that saw action in the Indiana General Assembly Thursday: (The Statehouse File)
House Republicans this week voted down Democrats’ attempts to help ensure Indiana’s voting machines are more secure in the 2020 election. (WFIU)
A revised bill that would address surprise medical billing passed the Senate health committee Wednesday, but many senators say there’s still a lot of work to be done. (WFIU) Also, some Indiana doctors are raising fears about a possible loss of emergency services under a plan to limit “surprise” medical bills that can plague patients who have been unknowingly treated by providers from outside their insurance networks. (Indiana Public Media)
Indiana is one vote away from banning you from using your phone while driving. (WIBC)
A legislative proposal for requiring annual training for teachers who carry guns inside Indiana schools was scuttled amid a disagreement over whether it infringed on gun rights. (WAVE-TV)
Republicans are advancing a bill to replace Indiana’s method of quickly purging voters from its voter rolls after the current system was halted in court. (Indiana Public Media)