Yes, we had some rocky times with the five-week Democrat walkout and what felt like an endless amount of protestors at the Statehouse-fighting for various causes. But putting all of that aside, we accomplished so much this session to better Indiana as a place to work, live and raise a family.
We made promises in November and this session, we delivered.
We came through with a structurally balanced budget that does not increase taxes, but instead keeps more than $1 billion in reserves and increases K-12 funding by 0.5% next year and one percent in 2013-something many of our neighboring states can't say.
We made government more transparent by requiring state and local government, public schools and universities to post financial data on a user-friendly website so taxpayers can see where their hard-earned dollars are being spent.
In regards to jobs, we enhanced the Venture Capital Investment Tax Credit to improve access to capital for fast-growing Hoosier companies, while also creating a one-stop-shop for new and existing business to get all their needed paperwork complete.
We also worked to promote economic development tools for local governments to help local and regional areas create and attract jobs. We also created tax incentives for businesses to renovate or remodel empty buildings to not only bring in jobs, but rid communities of eyesores that lower property value.
In regards to education, we were able to create legislation that rewards quality teachers, focuses dollars on the classroom and expands educational options for families. This was an issue I spoke regularly about in my weekly columns throughout the duration of session.
Some other items we delivered on this session was eliminating socialized health care insurance mandates on Hoosiers and our business owners; adopting meaningful illegal immigration reform; opposing cap and trade legislation; and, most importantly, discourage out of control spending.
Session had some rocky moments, as I said before, but overall we were able to deliver on what we promised.
As summer gets underway, I look forward to continuing meeting with community members and hearing your concerns-whether that be with past legislation or items you feel need to be addressed next year. I am always around, so just give me a call or send me an email. I am here to listen.
Rep. Kevin Mahan serves House District 31. He also serves as Vice-Chairman of the Government and Regulatory Reform Committee, and as member of the Insurance and the Veterans and Public Policy Committees.