“It is hard to believe that just a few short months ago we were talking about the upcoming 2013 session,” said Rep. Bacon. “I am especially proud of the work we have accomplished as a Legislature. During session, I concentrated my efforts on legislation that would directly help Hoosiers in the realm of public health and safety. I am pleased to see that those pieces of legislation have successfully become law.”
One of Rep. Bacon’s bills to be signed into law is HB 1061, which creates a Warrick County magistrate.
House Bill 1061 allows the judges of the Warrick County circuit and superior courts to jointly appoint a magistrate. According to the 2010 census, the Warrick County population has grown by almost 10,000 people in past ten years, making it one of the fastest growing counties in Indiana. The attractiveness of the region has spurred economic development and consequently more work for city judges. City judges will be held accountable for their work by the magistrate, creating a higher level of efficiency within the judicial system.
“With Warrick County growing so rapidly, it made sense to add a magistrate,” said Rep. Bacon. “The mental health commitments have also increased significantly since new hospitals were built in the surrounding area, and a new magistrate will ease some of the load in lower level offender cases.”
Rep. Bacon’s second bill signed into law, HB 1389, was authored in an effort to give more oversight to veterinarians to establish what tasks their subordinates (technicians and assistants) are able to perform.
“This bill will allow a veterinarian supervisor to mandate what practices and procedures their subordinates can perform, regardless of their certifications,” said Rep. Bacon. “It will give a more detailed perspective of oversight and accountably for inexperienced veterinarians, so that their practices are more safeguarded from potential legal consequences.”
Rep. Bacon also worked with his fellow representatives to co-author a total of nine House Bills. House Bill 1151, which created the Blue Alert program, was one of those notable pieces of legislation.
The Blue Alert program will notify the public when a law enforcement officer is killed, seriously injured or missing in the line of duty. The program will be operated by the Indiana State Police Department and will also alert the public if the criminal who caused harm has not been apprehended and may be a danger to others.
“The Blue Alert program will help address issues of public safety in our communities,” said Rep. Bacon. “Our law enforcement officers sometimes have to pay the ultimate price, and I sincerely hope the Blue Alert program will help ease the minds of the brave men and women who serve our communities.”
In working with state senators, Rep. Bacon sponsored a total of three Senate Bills (SB) and co-sponsored seven bills. Among these bills, SB 554 will save Hoosier taxpayers money under telehealth services. SB 554, refers to patient monitoring in the home by a health care provider from a distance, and telemedicine services under Medicaid. Telehealth and telemedicine services allow physicians and psychiatrists to care for their patients without having those patients travel to receive them or having physicians use precious time and money to visit the patients in their homes.
“As a healthcare provider, I truly believe in the potential of this law to save Hoosier taxpayers thousands of dollars through the practice of telehealth and telemedicine. There may be monitors that transmit blood pressure and other vital data in the home to the provider in a hospital. St. Francis Health has done this for a while and has noticed greater savings. Specifically for congestive heart failure, there is normally a one in four readmission rate. With telehealth, there is a one in twenty readmission rate. Reducing the readmission rate means that patients are having healthier outcomes, and is less costly,” said Rep. Bacon.
Rep. Bacon served on the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee, Public Health Committee and the Select Committee on Government Reduction during session. Rep. Bacon will continue to work at the Statehouse, in his district, and around the state over the summer.
“I began this session by setting goals for what I would like to see accomplished. I believe the Legislature has accomplished a great deal of positive efforts this session, and I look forward to what will be accomplished in the future,” said Rep. Bacon. “I am humbled to serve the people of District 75 at the Statehouse, and I look forward to building a brighter future for our community and state.”
Rep. Bacon (R-Chandler) represents portions of Warrick, Pike and Spencer counties.