The regular session of the Indiana General Assembly is over but

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The regular session of the Indiana General Assembly is over but Powered By Docstoc
					              ACEC Indiana Legislative Summary for 2012 Short Session

The short session of the 2012 Indiana General Assembly wrapped up after midnight
                   th
on Friday, March 9 . Passage of the Right To Work bill was a significant victory for the
Republican majority in the House and Senate and is expected to be focal point of the
campaigns in the November elections.

Your Government Affairs Committee, staff and lobbyists worked hard all session to
protect the interests of professional consulting engineering firms. A short summary of bills that passed, and brief
overview of key issues is below.

Business: Good news was the repeal of the “local preference” for Public Works that passed last year. It was
accomplished in both HB 1154 and SB 309, so the last one to be enacted will become law, but they are identical so
we are fine with either version. Other business-related news:
     Government Reform: Several State boards and commissions were eliminated or consolidated (HB 1002),
         electronic meetings and notices allowed (HB 1003), Anti-nepotism for Public Works contracts (HB 1005
         and within state government (HB 1250), and a requirement for Cost/Benefit analyses on Administrative
         Rules (SB 311).
     Design/Build allowed for Fire Protection Districts (HB 1016).
     Bonding & Retainage – time limits to make a claim on Public Works projects (HB 1163).

Professional:
     P.E. and Land Surveyor exam will become computer based (HB 1148).
     Inspection of Outdoor Stage Equipment and interim study committee (SB 273).

Transportation: No major initiatives here but a few positive bills:
     County Highway Maintenance will be allowed from property taxes and miscellaneous revenue deposited
        into the county general fund (SB 98).
     Hazardous Waste Disposal Taxes can be used for repair of county roads in limited circumstances (HB
        1016).
     Extra-heavy Duty Highways will be designated by INDOT (SB 301).
     Utility Relocation rules for INDOT will require contact information for utility representatives, and interim
        study committee will consider issues for local projects (SB 212).
     Continuation of the Joint Committee on Transportation Infrastructure (legislative study committee) from
        2011 session, chaired by Senator Tom Wyss (R-Ft. Wayne) and Representative Ed Soliday (R-Valparaiso).

Environmental:
     Water & Sewer – right of way & easements, hook up mandates (HB 1117), extraterritorial rates (HB 1126),
        water utility resource data (SB 132).
     Drainage – Little Calumet River basin development commission changes (HB 1264).
     Underground Storage Tanks – rulemaking (SB 133), Liability (SB 168).
     Conservancy Districts – Compensation of Directors (SB 22), contracts (SB 378).
     Hydraulic Fracking – regulated by IDNR (HB 1107).

ACEC Indiana’s list of bills that passed is available at www.acecindiana.org under the members-only section of the
Government Affairs Committee. Senate and House bills can be reviewed at
http://www.in.gov/apps/lsa/session/billwatch/billinfo

Now is the time for every member of ACEC Indiana to establish or strengthen your relationship with your State
Senator and State Representative so that you can help educate them about the value and expertise of professional
consulting engineers. You can meet them for coffee, take them to lunch, or invite them to your office to see your
operations and meet your staff. You can discuss any of the subjects addressed above since these topics are fresh to
the legislators, or use the opportunity to discuss the transportation and water/waste water infrastructure needs of
this state since they are still very pressing problems. To get contact information on your legislator, go to
http://district.iga.in.gov/DistrictLookup/. It won’t be too long before interim study committees begin and bills start
to get drafted for the 2013 session, so don’t delay.

				
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posted:10/30/2012
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