By Jim Lucas
The 2023 legislative session is in full swing with state lawmakers gathering at the Capitol to consider proposals for new laws.
From addressing health care and energy costs to expanding educational opportunities in high schools and economic development statewide, I am working to tackle several important issues impacting Hoosiers and our communities.
A priority this session is to pass the state’s next two-year budget. Indiana’s more than $36 billion budget funds K-12 education, higher education, Medicaid, health and human services, public safety, corrections, capital projects and general government operations.
As we craft another truly balanced budget, my goals remain on being fiscally responsible while supporting critical services and not growing government.
In Indiana, we protect taxpayers by maintaining responsible reserves in case of economic downturns, and we’ll continue to do so. With our state’s strong economy, we can build on our momentum by making strategic, one-time investments.
More than half of the state’s budget is dedicated to K-12 education, and we’re committed to continuing our strong support of students and families. We’re working on ways to better prepare young Hoosiers for what comes after high school, whether they pursue a two- or four-year degree or full-time employment.
By expanding work-based learning, apprenticeship and internship opportunities in high school, students will explore different career fields and learn applicable skills.
House Bill 1002 would allow quality work-based learning to count toward high school graduation requirements and create a framework for students to earn a postsecondary credential before graduation. Our workforce continues to experience shortages in skilled labor, and we have an opportunity to strengthen our talent pipeline by providing more flexibility to our schools and students.
Let’s stay connected this session, and please email me at [email protected] or call 317-234-9447 with questions or input on legislation. Be sure to visit in.gov/h69 and sign up to receive my e-newsletter updates providing information about what’s going on at the Statehouse. To learn more about legislation and watch session and committee meetings, visit iga.in.gov.
If you have a student aged 13 to 18 who would like to spend a day at the Statehouse to learn more about their state government, I encourage you to sign them up for our House Page Program. I always look forward to welcoming student pages from our community.
Pages assist lawmakers and staff with daily duties and tour the governor’s office, the Indiana Supreme Court and House and Senate chambers. Please contact my office to sign up or visit indianahouserepublicans.com/pageprogram.
I look forward to having a productive session as we tackle a wide range of issues important to everyday Hoosiers and businesses.
State Rep. Jim Lucas, R-Seymour, represents House District 69, which includes portions of Bartholomew, Jackson, Scott and Washington counties.