As a new year begins so does a new legislative session. In 2016, we will tackle many issues and challenges to keep Indiana growing and on the right track.
Once the legislative session begins, it’s almost like a night and day change how different the environment becomes in the Statehouse. It’s been great to see my fellow lawmakers as we set our legislative goals and get acquainted with agenda items. The time will go faster than we think, especially as we stay focused on the tasks at hand, while always considering what is best for Hoosiers.
One of our legislative priorities this session is education, specifically attracting and retaining the best and brightest teachers. We need to improve teacher recruitment and retention in Indiana, particularly within the subjects of science, technology, education and math (STEM) and special education. As a father of four boys, I understand the desire of every parent to want the very best educators in our classrooms. The most important single factor in student achievement is a good teacher; it’s vital that we have talented professionals in our classrooms.
The condition of our state’s transportation infrastructure also impacts the lives of Hoosiers. When it comes to our roads, Indiana is held to a higher standard because we are the Crossroads of America. It is imperative our highways and bridges are properly funded and maintained. This requires long-term, comprehensive solutions that don’t rely solely on any one funding mechanism. In order to prevent future shortfalls, our planning must account for uncertainty, such as inflation and economic cycles.
In next week’s column, I will highlight my personal legislative priorities for this session. Ultimately, it is your input that guides my decisions as I drafting and consider new laws that work to better our community and state.
While the Indiana General Assembly is at work to make a positive impact on Indiana, it is essential that we communicate. To keep up with the 2016 legislative session, I encourage you to sign up for my electronic newsletters. They include information on bills that I am working on and supporting. You can subscribe online by visiting, www.in.gov/h74 and provide an email address on the left side of the page.
Please feel free to call my office at (317) 232-9793 to share your ideas or input, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you so I can better represent our district at the Statehouse.
Rep. Arnold (R-Leavenworth) represents portions of Spencer, Dubois, Perry, Crawford and Orange counties.