Accountability is our Responsibility

Budget brings largest increase to education funding in state’s history

Posted by: Courtney Scott  | Wednesday, April 29, 2015

STATEHOUSE – Speaker of the Indiana House of Representatives, Brian C. Bosma (R-Indianapolis), announced the end of session, or Sine Die, on Wednesday evening with many accomplished priorities. State Representative Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) applauds the success of the House Republican agenda, which was released in October, focusing on four key categories: Budget Integrity, Education Funding, Ethics Reform and Public Safety.

“Before session began, we made public our goal to hold firm to our commitment to fiscal integrity,” said Rep. Frye. “One of the ways that we achieved this was through passing an honestly balanced budget that does not increase taxes on hardworking Hoosiers. This not only protects Hoosiers today, but also ensures financial stability for future generations, who would ultimately be responsible for any exorbitant debts that we incur.”

Nearly two-thirds of this year’s biennial budget is devoted to Indiana’s education system. In fact, by increasing K-12 appropriations by $474 million, this budget contains the largest increase in K-12 education in the state’s history. House Republicans also led and successfully passed legislation that provides teachers who purchase their own classroom supplies with a $100 tax credit. Additionally, the House Republicans fixed the funding formula by substantially reducing the spending gap between the traditionally highest and lowest funded public schools.

“A strong education system sets the stage for student success and is absolutely critical to move our state forward,” said Rep. Frye. “As a result of our historic investment, each and every school district in our community will receive a net increase in funding over the biennium which will help them to provide the kind of quality education that every Hoosier student deserves.”

House Republicans have a long track record of public accountability initiatives and added to that list this session. In a bipartisan effort, historic ethics reform legislation passed unanimously this session increasing accountability by strengthening reporting requirements and disclosure of conflicts of interest.

House Republicans also worked to address several public safety concerns including domestic violence victim support, infant mortality reduction and criminal justice funding. Through the budget, House Republicans doubled funding for domestic violence prevention and dedicated $59 million of new money over the biennium for investments in community corrections programming and capacity building. Additionally, the budget included a $13.5 million appropriation to fund the Safety P.I.N. (Protecting Indiana’s Newborns) grant program to reduce Indiana’s incredibly high infant mortality rate.

“We pledged to address these critical issues this session and we have delivered. Through our commitment to fiscal integrity, education, ethics and public safety, we have made great achievements for Hoosiers,” said Speaker Bosma.