When lawmakers at the Indiana Statehouse adjourned sine die (meaning without a date to resume, for those of us that don’t speak Latin), one of AARP Indiana’s most successful legislative sessions in recent memory concluded.
Thanks to persistent volunteers teaming up with staff and leaders at the statehouse, legislation set to become law this summer will positively impact health care options, public safety, and much more.
While there are several key moments from this year’s session, take a deeper look at five Legislative Team victories won during the 2019 General Assembly:
HEA 1001 – State Budget
Indiana prides itself on fiscally sound budgeting. AARP Indiana supported appropriations within the budget that will make a difference for Adult Protective Services, the CHOICE program (Community and Home Options to Institutional Care for the Elderly and Disabled), and the Public Mass Transit Fund.
“Whether it was making sure that there’s money to help Hoosier live independently at home or have greater mobility, our Legislative Team made quality of life for people 50+ a budgetary priority,” AARP Indiana State Director Sarah Waddle said.
SEA 380 – Supported Decision Making (SDM)
Continuing the theme of options, SEA 380 is going to make a difference for Hoosiers that are facing tough choices and need a little more help to make those decisions.
“The goal is to help Hoosiers retain as much independence and self-determination as possible,” said Ambre Marr, AARP Indiana Legislative Director. “SDM is a less restrictive alternative for adults to consider who may have otherwise felt that guardianship was their only option.”
HEA 1029 – Prescription Drug Pricing Study Committee
Looking at other financial matters, the Legislative Team got a big win when it comes to prescription drugs.
HEA 1029 urges lawmakers to study consumer issues in the world of prescription drug pricing, access, and costs. We’ll be waiting to hear what the Interim Study Committee on Public Health, Behavioral Health, and Human Services has to say this summer as it will discuss this topic that impacts Hoosiers all over the state.
HEA 1344 – Nurse Licensure Compact
With nearly 835,000 unpaid family caregivers in the State of Indiana, this big win lessens restrictions on nurses, which will ultimately help people in rural and underserved communities.
HEA 1344 eliminates certain regulations that set up geographic boundaries that were limiting nursing services. This makes Indiana the thirty-second state to join the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC).
HEA 1224 – School Intergenerational Safety Pilot Project
Hoosiers that are 50+ have a wealth of resources to contribute to the community, and they have a vested interest in the success of generations that follow them.
HEA 1224 initiates a pilot project that is all about positive youth development. Among other benefits, it aims to help kids grow as individuals through intergenerational mentorship, as well as provide volunteers that can provide an extra set of eyes and ears in facilities for an additional layer of safety at public schools.
Volunteers for this program will be 55 or older. Up to three schools will be selected for this pilot program.
BONUS – SB 613 doesn’t get the votes
AARP Indiana played a role in opposing SB 613, a bill that would have expanded unaffordable and predatory loans in more ways than one.
It would have allowed for large subprime loans with as much 25% to 35% interest on a $20,000 car.
It would have allowed for long-term payday loans with a shocking 167% APR.
It would have allowed a new loan product where a consumer could repeatedly refinance loans at up to 70% APR.
AARP Indiana was one of several organizations to tell lawmakers to vote no, and we were heard.
We can’t say thanks enough to our Legislative Team volunteers for the amazing work done on behalf of all Hoosiers. We’re excited to reconvene the team for the 2020 session.
“Our Legislative Team volunteers were instrumental in our success and set the bar for accomplishment in future legislative sessions,” AARP Indiana State Director Sarah Waddle said. “The future looks brighter as we continue to work together so that others can choose how they want to live as they age.”
This story is provided by AARP Indiana. Visit the AARP Indiana page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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