STATEHOUSE —Members of the Indiana General Assembly, including State Rep. Sue Ellspermann (R-Ferdinand), returned to the Statehouse for Organization Day to hear the House Speaker deliver a speech setting the tone for the upcoming legislative session.
This year, Speaker Brian C. Bosma (R-Indianapolis) addressed job creation during the Organization Day ceremony. Indiana currently has a stubborn unemployment rate hovering around 9 percent.
“One of my top priorities this year will be to continue to help strengthen Indiana’s economy and create an economic climate that attracts jobs to Indiana,” said Rep. Ellspermann. “I look forward to a productive and challenging short session.”
The Indiana General Assembly is a part-time legislature, meeting on a two-year cycle — three months in even-numbered years and four months in odd-numbered years. Short sessions, such as the upcoming one, are relatively new for the legislature. Until 1969, Indiana legislators only met once every other year. In 1970, the legislature decided to allow short sessions to deal with important issues facing the state.
The upcoming 2012 legislative session will begin on Jan. 4 and according to state statues must conclude by March 14.
Speaker Bosma announced that Right to Work legislation will be a top priority the upcoming short session. The goal of the legislation is to bring more job opportunities for the over a quarter of a million unemployed Hoosier workers.
"Right to Work (RTW) is important economic development legislation to consider. With nearly 9 percent statewide unemployment and a need to have good career opportunities for our young people, Indiana must be able to attract high tech, high wage jobs. Further, Right to Work has never been shown to reduce wages nor cause unsafe environments. It will, however, give Hoosiers workers more choice on two fronts: more jobs and the choice of paying union dues,” said Rep. Ellspermann.
The public is encouraged to watch the legislative process online, a Republican-created transparency initiative, to view both the House Chamber and committee proceedings at www.in.gov/legislative . Click on “Watch the General Assembly Session,” on the right side of the screen.
For questions or comments regarding this session, Rep. Ellspermann can be reached by email at h74@IN.gov, by phone at 1-800-382-9841 or by mail at the Statehouse, 200 W. Washington St., Indianapolis, Ind. 46204.