April 4th, 2019
A Little Something to Read from a Shady Respite
Sure, we know from social media you are having an amazing time, your kids built a Biltmore-replica sandcastle, and you have a new affinity for blood orange margaritas. But there’s stuff going on back here at home that we believe is important to you, even while you’re taking a vaca from the “real world.” (Because we know you’re sneaking looks to email during naptime.)
Did We Win or Lose? We have had much to say and write about the creation of a bias crimes bill that sufficiently denoted that Indiana was open for and welcoming to business for ALL including include age, race, ethnicity, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, disability, gender, gender identity and sexual orientation. We were adamant that language was included in the legislation; however, it was not to be as the passed SB 198 omitted age, sex, gender and gender identity. It’s not what we had hoped, but we believe it is a step in the right direction. We will continue to work with our legislators, and other groups like Indiana Forward, to ensure they are added, and specifically identified in the statute in the future.
On School Safety . OneZone was successful in adding an amendment to a school safety bill during the second-half of the legislative session. HB 1004 is the House omnibus school safety bill and our amendment would provide civil immunity for those that are involved with the creation of school safety plans. Our rationale is that safe and strong schools are our community's strongest asset. The amendment was adopted into the bill and the bill passed out of committee by a vote of 9-0. It now heads to the full Senate for further consideration. 
Etc., Etc. Etc. We’re pleased to see SB 565 moving closer to the Governor’s desk for signature. This bill reorganizes the Regional Development Authority plan to more clearly designate options for both participants and funding via special local income tax or food and beverage tax. And, it wouldn’t be a legislative session if we didn’t summon up our inner Monty Python and proclaim, Not Dead Yet! While there’s been little interest in a tax hike on cigarettes, Nick Torres with the American Lung Association notes Senate President Pro Tem Rod Bray (R-Martinsville) has conceded legislators will have to raise the tax at some point. We say, “No time like the present!” It’s both a workforce health and productivity issue. Read OneZone COO Jack Russell’s, “ Don’t Be a Pain in the Butt ” for details.
PLUS ONE : When you return from Spring Break, you may notice that the daffodils and redbuds have bloomed out in full force, as have a proliferation of political yard signs. That’s because the election is slightly more than 30 days away. So, if you’re not registered, you MUST BE REGISTERED BY MONDAY, APRIL 8. Happily, you can do it online and be all set when EARLY VOTING starts April 9.