Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority bill signed into law

Posted by: Kelly Sweeney  | Wednesday, July 22, 2015 8:00 am

STATEHOUSE – State Representative Ed Soliday (R-Valparaiso) authored House Enrolled Act (HEA) 1398, co-authored by State Representative Hal Slager (R-Schererville), which will continue funding to the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA). HEA 1398 was ceremoniously signed into law by Governor Mike Pence.

“The RDA is focused on redeveloping Northwest Indiana and creating a more financially stable environment,” said Rep. Soliday. “They have some of the best methods for connecting residents in our area to good jobs, so more Hoosiers are able to support their families and contribute to the business climate of Northwest Indiana. However, the RDA needs guaranteed resources in order to continue their plans, and I was proud to work towards that goal this session.”

The RDA was created by the Legislature in 2005 to spark economic development in Northwest Indiana. The projects they have accomplished over the years have strengthened the infrastructure in the area, but the responsibilities of the RDA have become indistinct over the years. This legislation sets forth specific projects the RDA is able to plan, pending approval by the state’s Budget Committee.

“This is a necessary measure which would ensure that the RDA remains accountable and credible to taxpayers,” said Rep. Slager. “By refocusing the responsibilities of the RDA to regional transportation, infrastructure projects and implementing the Marquette Plan, the duties for the RDA will be clear-cut, giving infrastructure projects in the area stability.”

This law also provides changes to the membership requirements for the RDA board. By requiring the members to be senior officers with financial experience, this will increase accountability for Hoosiers and benefitting communities alike.

HEA 1398 went into effect July 1, 2015.

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Rep. Soliday (R-Valparaiso) represents the city of Valparaiso, all of Center, Union and Washington townships and portions of Liberty and Jackson townships.

Rep. Slager (R-Schererville) represents portions of Lake County. Rep. Slager serves on the Ways and Means Committee and the Public Health Committee.