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Church News

I-CAN Update for 3/22/19

March 21, 2019
HB 1225. Safe schools, authored by Representative Gregory Steuerwald
(R -Danville), passed the Senate Homeland Security Committee unanimously. The bill authorizes the county sheriff and schools in the county to utilize secured school grant funds for an active warning system for an emergency event. The system will automatically notify all emergency personnel within the county to respond immediately. All schools, including all non-public schools, are to be includedwithin the system should it be installed. ICC supports the bill. The bill passed the House unanimously and is expected to pass the Senate next week.

Another school safety bill is making its way through the Senate. Senate Education Committee heard HB 1004, School safety, provides for matching grants to schools for safety measures including non-public schools. The bill identifies two separate funds; non-public schools as well as public schools are eligible for grants from the secured schools fund. The second fund, safe schools, are for public schools only. In addition to funds for safety equipment and personnel, the funds may also be used to provide for mental health or social emotional health services as preventive measures. ICC supports the bill. The committee will vote on the bill next week.

The Senate passed HB 1517, Charity gaming, authored by Representative Ben Smaltz (R - Auburn), 41 - 7. The update of charity gaming regulations now returns to the House without amendments. Since it was not changed it should be sent to the Governor for signature.

House Public Policy Committee amended and passed SB 119, Prohibited firearm transfers to minors, 13 - 0. The original bill, authored by Senator Jim Tomes (R - Wadesville), provides for restrictions regarding machine guns. Representative Smaltz, however, used this bill as vehicle for HB 1643, Firearm matters, which dealt with changing gun permit fees and provided that persons with gun permits could carry on church grounds with schools, provided the church or property owner permitted it. You may recall that HB 1643 was held on third reading in order to clarify language surrounding the definition of schools.  The definition and language were clarified, and the bill inserted into SB 119. Because churches can continue to prohibit guns on property with or without schools, ICC is neutral on the bill.

House Family, Children and Human Affairs Committee did not consider SB 440, TANF eligibility, in its meeting this week. The bill was held for further fiscal examination. The bill is scheduled for a vote on Tuesday and may then be assigned to House Ways and Means Committee.  ICC supports the bill.

Next week Senate Judiciary Committee will hear HB 1211, Abortion matters. The bill prohibits dismemberment abortion conducted during the second trimester. ICC supports the bill as it will protect babies in the womb.

Also, Senate Public Health Committee will hear HB 1547. Consent to pregnancy services of a minor, authored by Representative Cindy Kirchhofer (R - Beech Grove). The bill provides that a minor between the ages of 16 - 18 may consent for pregnancy, labor and postpartum care, after a health provider first attempts to reach the parent for consent; if unable to make contact or the parent refuses to give consent the minor can then give consent. The bill calls for the doctor to respond in the best interest of the mother and the baby. The genesis of the bill is to address maternal and infant mortality. ICC is monitoring the bill to ensure that parental rights are maintained. A similar bill failed in the Senate earlier this session because contacting the parent was not required prior to granting the minor with authority for consent.