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

Posted by: Kim Heffner  | Friday, May 1, 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 for the House Republicans. State Representatives Woody Burton (R-Whiteland) and John Price (R-Greenwood) applaud the success of the House Republican agenda, which was released in October and focused on four key categories: Budget Integrity, Education Funding, Ethics Reform and Public Safety.

House Republicans championed a two-year budget that is honestly balanced and does not increase taxes on Hoosiers or placing an unsustainable financial burden on future generations. The budget also protects Indiana’s healthy reserves and strong structural surplus, which are both critical to maintaining Indiana’s triple-A credit rating.

“Indiana’s triple-A credit rating is a testament to our sound financial decisions and fiscal integrity,” said Rep. Price. “I am proud of the budget that was passed as it is crucial to our state’s economic success and prosperity both now and in the future.”   

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.

“One of Indiana’s highest priorities is education, and we continued that tradition during the 2015 session,” said Rep. Burton. “I am pleased with all we have accomplished including providing teachers with a tax credit and substantially increasing our investment in education.”

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.

“We enacted unprecedented ethics reforms. It is my hope this will work to limit conflicts of interest and bolster the public trust,” said Speaker Bosma.

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 treatment and dedicated $59 million 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.


 Rep. John Price (R-Greenwood) represents portions of Johnson and Morgan Counties. He serves as Chairman of the Local Government Committee and a member of the Financial Institutions and Veterans Affairs and Public Safety Committees.

Rep. Woody Burton (R- Whiteland) represents a portion of Johnson County. He serves as Chairman of the Financial Institutions Committee. He also serves on the Education, Elections and Apportionment, Insurance, and Rules and Legislative Procedures Committees.