The Indiana public got its final chance to testify on the next state budget Thursday, advocating for everything from education to housing to trails.
The budget bill, HB 1001, is currently in conference committee, which means House and Senate lawmakers are working – mostly behind closed doors –on a final version that both chambers can agree on.
At the lone conference committee hearing, Prosperity Indiana’s Andrew Bradley urged lawmakers to include money for a housing stability fund. He said it would go towards an existing network that provides case management and housing counseling to families in need.
“So, that $10 million would allow that existing network to be able to help with the 87,000 households – 150,000 children that are in those households – to be able to prevent evictions,” Bradley said.
READ MORE: Indiana lawmakers have $1.5 billion more to spend in budget after updated forecast
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Some of the requests weren’t for new programs, but to increase dollars for items already in versions of the new budget. That includes the Hoosier Environmental Council’s Tim Maloney advocating for land conservation and trail funding.
“The states that we compete with for people and talent and businesses are making these investments,” Maloney said.
Lawmakers will finalize the budget by April 29.
Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.