Mayors and Commissioners Caucus of NE Indiana releases 2019 legislative agenda

(Photo Supplied/NE Indiana Regional Partnership)

NORTHEAST INDIANA, (WOWO) – The 2019 legislative agenda has been released for northeast Indiana.

The Mayors and Commissioners Caucus of Northeast Indiana released it Thursday, identifying high-impact initiatives important to local elected officials within the 11 counties.

The Caucus prioritized three policies, including:

  1. Home Rule and Local Control – The Caucus supports the expansion of home rule and local decision authority in the following areas:
    • Tax Increment Financing
    • Business Personal Property Tax
    • 911 Fees
    • Food and Beverage Tax
    • Innkeepers Tax
    • Community Mental Health Center Designation
  2. Transportation and Bridge Funding – The Caucus supports the following initiatives to increase transportation and bridge funding:
    • Restore the local motor vehicle highway and local road and street distribution to 2016 levels.
    • Increase thresholds for the Community Crossings program.
    • Relax application restrictions for the Community Crossings program.
    • Increase the maximum threshold on the Wheel Tax and Surtax.
  3. Public Health and Safety Funding – The Caucus supports initiatives that contribute to the safety, health and welfare of residents.
    • Public safety and criminal initiatives include: 
      • Support the repeal of mandating level 6 felony offenders to stay in local communities if sentenced to jail.
      • Support increased funding for criminal justice.
      • Support the increase in biennium budget for Recovery Works.
    • Opioid and substance use initiatives include: 
      • Support enforcement of CBD oil guidelines.
      • Support the increase in approved opioid treatment locations in the state.
    • Mental health initiatives include:
      • Support allowing counties to designate their own community mental health centers to those that provide services.
      • Support authorizing legislation and funding for the development of regional mental health facilities.

“The Caucus’ 2019 legislative agenda is an essential component of our region’s collaborative efforts at the statehouse,” said Columbia City Mayor Ryan Daniel. “This agenda will help expand our region’s strong economic climate, build upon our region’s existing infrastructure and invest in the health and safety of our residents.”

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