The state legislature on Friday approved Senate Bill 2, which combines inflation relief with funding for women and families. Gov. Eric Holcomb signed it the same day.
The House overwhelmingly passed the proposal by a 93-6 vote Friday morning.
On Friday afternoon, the Senate passed the bill 37-9. Minority Leader Greg Taylor joined eight Republicans in opposition.
Holcomb announced his support for the bill Thursday and said in a statement he planned to sign SB 2 “as soon as it arrives on my desk.”
The bill also drew broad support in both chambers including from some Democrats – although many minority caucus members criticized SB 2’s funding as inadequate.
Others, including Sen. Shelli Yoder, D-Bloomington, said they had concerns about the funding provided to crisis pregnancy centers and organizations such as Real Alternatives.
Sen. Vaneta Becker, R-Evansville, also criticized the bill and mentioned a failed House amendment from Rep. Rita Fleming, D-Jeffersonville, that would have allowed pharmacists to prescribe hormonal birth control.
“You can’t reduce the number of abortions without providing contraceptives,” Becker said.
The final version of the bill is a compromise between Republicans in the two chambers.
Although the initial proposals had significant differences, leadership from the two caucuses eventually agreed to a plan that was added to SB 2 by an amendment Thursday from Rep. Tim Brown, R-Crawfordsville.
SB 2 would send $200 payments to Hoosiers who filed taxes last year and would provide a $200 refundable tax credit next year to those who aren’t eligible for the refund but who receive Social Security benefits and aren’t claimed by another taxpayer as a dependent in 2022.
It would also transfer the first $1 billion of the state’s excess reserves in 2023 – if the state has sufficient reserves next year – to the pension stabilization fund, a priority of Senate Republicans, and would cap the state gas tax at 29.5 cents until July 1, 2023.
As for wraparound services, SB 2 incorporates parts of both chambers’ proposals for funding aimed at assisting women, children and families.
The bill would give $45 million to the new Hoosier Families First Fund, money that will be earmarked for several state agencies to pay for new and existing programs, including those that support pregnant and postpartum women, assist foster and adoptive families, and help low-income families with young children.
In addition, SB 2 would also send about $29 million in funding directly to existing initiatives including the Child Care and Development Fund voucher program and the Nurse Family Partnership program.
The state’s adoption tax credit would increase to $2,500 from $1,000 under SB 2 as well.