Organization Day gives each caucus an opportunity to swear in new members and arrange committees before the lawmaking process begins on Jan. 7. While legislation is not voted on or debated during the day’s events, many legislators are already thinking about the main goal of this session: passing Indiana’s fifth-consecutive balanced budget.
Other states and our federal government continue to accrue debt, but Indiana’s focus on living within its means has placed us in a better financial position than most. We are projected to have a budget surplus of more than $400 million in 2013, and legislators will work hard this session to preserve our sound fiscal footing through responsible state spending.
However, spending is not the end of the story. Lawmakers will also examine tax policies that promote job growth and energize our economy. Despite the economic downturn, our state has maintained a triple-A credit rating and continued to add jobs – more than 57,000 in private-sector this year alone. It is the General Assembly’s objective to continue this positive trend through responsible state policies.
I am committed to encouraging these financial principles in the 2013 session. As we have seen all too often in recent years, reckless spending can be the downfall of even the most secure institutions. The well-being of Hoosiers is too important to risk with unbalanced fiscal policies.
In order to pass a state budget that benefits all Hoosiers, we must work across the aisle and hear all opinions. That includes your opinion as a constituent. I encourage all Senate District 17 residents to stay in touch throughout session by contacting me at Senator.Banks@iga.in.gov or calling 1-800-382-9467.
Senator Jim Banks