Bacon: Maintaining Indiana’s honestly balanced budget

Posted by: Victoria Klimczak  | Friday, October 19, 2018 3:00 pm

When you head to the polls on Nov. 6, there will be an opportunity to support a proposed amendment to the Indiana constitution. If passed, the amendment would require the General Assembly to maintain an honestly balanced state budget to ensure Indiana continues to live within its means.

For the last seven years, Indiana has maintained a balanced budget and a AAA bond rating from all three major credit agencies. Our commitment to fiscal discipline has propelled our state to a top-rated business climate with a record-low unemployment rate. Maintaining our strong fiscal health will help ensure this momentum continues.

While Indiana’s constitution already bans the state from incurring most types of debt, there is still room for overspending. Adding this safeguard to the state constitution could prevent future legislatures from passing on unnecessary debt to future generations.

Public question No. 1 on your ballot will read: “Shall Article 10, Section 5 of the Constitution of the State of Indiana be amended to require the General Assembly to adopt balanced budgets for state government that do not exceed estimated revenues unless a supermajority of two-thirds of the members of the House of Representatives and two-thirds of the members of the Senate vote to suspend the requirement?” Voting “yes” means you support requiring Indiana to maintain a balanced biennial budget, and voting “no” means you oppose adding this requirement. 

It is important to know, in the event of an economic downturn, state lawmakers could suspended the restriction. However, this action would need a two-thirds majority vote in both the House and the Senate.

I hope you join me in supporting to maintain Indiana’s honestly balanced budget. If you have any questions about this proposed amendment, please contact my office at 317-232-9643 or h75@iga.in.gov.

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State Rep. Ron Bacon (R-Chandler) represents House District 75, 
which includes portions of Warrick, Pike and Spencer counties.

Click here to download a high-resolution photo.