House Bill 1561 requires the IEDC to develop a high speed Internet service deployment and adoption initiative and create a statewide geographic information system of telecommunications and information technology services. The bill passed by a vote of 47-1. Rep. Murphy has been on the forefront of telecommunications legislation for years.
"High speed Internet and up-to-the-minute telecommunications services are instrumental in growing Indiana's economy," Rep. Murphy said. "This bill will make sure our state is a leader in home and business telecommunications, which will help us retain businesses and attract more."
The second bill, House Bill 1697, creates an Office of Small Business Advancement through the IEDC. This new division would carry out the corporation's duties concerning small business development. The bill requires the division to provide an annual report to the governor and assist small businesses in obtaining state and federal tax incentives.
To further aid Indiana's small businesses, this division is required to maintain a network of public, private and educational resources to inform small businesses of programs for which they may qualify for financial assistance or reduce their operating costs.
HB 1697 passed third reading in the Senate with a vote of 48-0.
"Indiana's small business community is the foundation of our economy, and we must do everything we can to support our small business in these uncertain economic times," Rep. Murphy said.
"Together, these bills move Indiana forward with services and opportunities that support existing industry and attract new businesses, which will bring more jobs to Indiana and grow our economy."
Both bills, if approved by the House in their current form, will head to the desk of Gov. Mitch Daniels. To keep track of these and other bills that make their way to the governor, visit http://www.in.gov/gov/billwatch.htm.