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2021 Indiana General Assembly Report, Week 9

 

The second half of 2021’s General Assembly is getting off to a slow start at the Statehouse. So far there have been only a handful of hearings and days have ended early with little to no calendar action during full sessions of each chamber.

 

There was no meeting of the House Utilities Committee this week but the Senate Utilities Committee held an informational meeting titled "Lessons from Texas." Representatives from the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, Regional Transmission Organizations PJM and Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), and The Indiana Energy Association all presented details about why Texas failed its consumers during the massive February ice storm. The hearing lasted two hours and committee members asked a great deal of questions about Indiana’s vertically integrated investor owned utilities versus Texas’ deregulated utilities. More on utility regulation in general from the EPA here. Kerwin was quoted in many stories about whether Texas’ situation could affect Indiana on WTHR, in the Indianapolis Star.

 

Aside from the Senate Utilities Committee, we took part in many meetings with coalition partners to continue our work focusing on consumer outcomes. We learned that SB141, the bill that will unfairly change requirements for IndyGo and upend plans to improve transit, has been placed in the Committee on Roads and Transportation in the House. It is still unknown whether the bill will be heard.

 

We are also following the Wetlands deregulation bill, Senate Bill 389, which has been placed in the House Environmental Affairs Committee, a committee that did not meet during the first half of the legislature. It is not yet known if SB 389 will receive a hearing either.

 

Upcoming This Week

We’ll be monitoring meetings of both the Senate and House Utilities Committees which will be discussing a slew of broadband bills, all seeking to expand and improve service to underserved communities. 

 

A Reminder

To follow these bills in real time, make sure you follow us on Twitter. We tweet throughout the week as to the progress of bills we mention in our reports and on our own Indiana General Assembly Bill Watch website.

 

Respectfully Submitted,

Lindsay Haake & Kerwin Olson

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