Energy News

15
March

The 2018 Legislative Session Comes to a Close!

 The 2018 legislative session is in the books! Representatives and Senators concluded their work early this morning and have adjourned "sine die" until the next installment of the Indiana General Assembly in 2019.

  The close of the 2018 legislative session wasn't without some challenges, though. Both the House of Representatives and Senate worked past midnight and into the morning, but adjourned before voting on five bills. Governor Eric Holcomb, in an unprecedented move, extended the legislative deadline of midnight to 1:00 a.m. so work could continue on outstanding legislation. However, after a legal challenge regarding the extension, Republican leaders withdrew the extension effectively ending session for 2018 leaving five pending bills to die.

  Two of the bills in question were agenda items of Governor Holcomb: a funding boost for school security measures and a plan to regulate self-driving cars. Additionally, two tax related bills and a takeover plan bill for school districts in Muncie and Gary also died. 

  Here is a look at the legislation IUSA monitored during session and how it fared:

Utility Specific Legislation:

  • House Bill 1050, authored by Representative Dave Ober (R-Albion), specifies in greater detail where small cell wireless structures for communication service providers may be placed on utility structures. The legislation aims to remedy issues created from Senate Enrolled Act 213, passed last year, which unnecessarily burdened local communities and other utilities. 
    STATUS UPDATE: Passed. Signed by Governor Holcomb on 3/8/2018.
  • Senate Bill 125, authored by Senator Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis), requires an underground utility excavation contractor to file with the Indiana Secretary of State that they will comply with Indiana’s 811 statute that regulates underground digging. SB 125 also...
4
March

State House Update 3/2/2018

 With just under two weeks left in the 2018 legislative session, the finish line is in sight for Senators and Representatives conducting the state's business in Indianapolis. The statutory ending date for the 2018 session is Wednesday, March 14th. 

  Here is a look at legislation IUSA is monitoring along with other legislation, news and notes surrounding the legislature:

Utility Specific Legislation:

  • House Bill 1050, authored by Representative Dave Ober (R-Albion), specifies in greater detail where small cell wireless structures for communication service providers may be placed on utility structures. The legislation aims to remedy issues created from Senate Enrolled Act 213, passed last year, which unnecessarily burdened local communities and other utilities. 
    STATUS UPDATE: Passed. Waiting to be signed by Governor Holcomb.
  • Senate Bill 125, authored by Senator Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis), requires an underground utility excavation contractor to file with the Indiana Secretary of State that they will comply with Indiana’s 811 statute that regulates underground digging. SB 125 also gives the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission the authority to inform the Attorney General if any contractors break the 811 statutes while conducting their business.
    STATUS UPDATE: Scheduled to be voted on Monday in the House of Representatives.   
  • Senate Bill 362, authored by Sen. Ed Charbonneau (R-Valparaiso), would put in place conforming regulations and requirements for water and wastewater utilities subject to the jurisdiction of the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. SB 362 establishes industry standards for the management and operation of water and wastewater utilities aimed at increasing the level of service provided to customers and communities....
19
February

Second Half of 2018 Legislative Session Underway

  The second half of the legislative session is underway and it comes with the announcement of the retirement of one of the stalwarts of Indiana politics. Senator David Long (R-Fort Wayne), Senate President since 2007, plans to retire in November after 22 years of service as a state senator. In all, His public service spans over 30 years. 

  The last weeks of session will likely go by in a flash. With four more weeks left in the legislative session, there are multiple issues still left to be considered.

Utility Specific Legislation:

  • House Bill 1050, authored by Representative Dave Ober (R-Albion), specifies in greater detail where small cell wireless structures for communication service providers may be placed on utility structures. The legislation aims to remedy issues created from Senate Enrolled Act 213, passed last year, which unnecessarily burdened local communities and other utilities.  HB 1050 passed the Senate Committee on Commerce and Technology yesterday by a vote of 9-1. HB 1050 will now be considered by the entire Senate for potential amendments and a vote.

  • Senate Bill 125, authored by Senator Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis), requires an underground utility excavation contractor to file with the Indiana Secretary of State that they will comply with Indiana’s 811 statute that regulates underground digging. SB 125 also gives the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission the authority to inform the Attorney General if any contractors break the 811 statutes while conducting their business. SB 125 passed the entire Senate and will...

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