Indiana’s Republican State Senators have introduced legislation that would ban all abortions in Indiana with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.

Senate Bill 1 (ss), authored by State Sen. Sue Glick (R-LaGrange), and Senate Bill 2 (ss), authored by State Sen. Ryan Mishler (R-Bremen) work together as a package, which Republican Senators say will protect life and provide assistance to expectant and new mothers and their families.

SB 1 does not affect access to the morning-after pill or any other method of birth control, does not affect treatment of miscarriages, does not affect treatment of ectopic pregnancies, does not affect in-vitro fertilization procedures, does not prohibit ending a pregnancy when the unborn child would not be able to survive due to a fatal fetal anomaly, and does not criminalize women seeking an abortion. SB 1 does not create any new penalties for doctors who perform abortions – the existing penalty that allows a doctor to have his or her license revoked if he or she performs an illegal abortion will remain in place.

In addition to the abortion ban, lawmakers are also proposing additional funding for expectant mothers and families.  Lawmakers are providing a $50 million initial investment to that end. SB 2 would allocate $45 million to the Hoosier Families First Fund, which would allow the State Budget Committee to distribute funds to the Indiana Department of Health, Indiana Family and Social Services Agency, Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS) and Indiana Department of Homeland Security for a variety of programs that can help support healthy pregnancies and families.

Eligible existing and new programs could address:

  • Funding to support the health of pregnant mothers,
  • Pregnancy planning, including addressing barriers to long-acting reversible contraception,
  • Needs of low-income families with children under four years old,
  • Increased access to child care,
  • Support for foster and adoptive care,
  • Programs to prevent children from entering the DCS system,
  • Funding for Safe Haven baby boxes and more.

SB 2 also increases Indiana’s adoption tax credit tenfold from $1,000 to $10,000. The adoption tax credit is available to Hoosiers who incur expenses when adopting a child. This change would have an estimated fiscal impact of $5 million.

You can hear Senate President Pro Tem Rod Bray and Senator Glick in the Leon-Tailored Audio above.   As well as Democratic Leader Greg Taylor.

In addition to the abortion ban, lawmakers also introduced tax relief to help Hoosiers deal with inflation.

SB 3 authored by State Sen. Travis Holdman (R-Markle), provides for a six-month suspension of the sales tax on residential utilities, which nearly all Hoosiers pay. This would include the 7% sales tax on electricity, water, gas, internet and phone bills.

SB 3 also:

  • Caps the sales tax on gasoline so that as it fluctuates each month, it cannot go above 29.5 cents/gallon through June 30, 2023.
  • Suspends the increase to the gas tax and special fuel tax that took effect on July 1, effective through June 30, 2023. This policy will reduce the gas tax by 1 cent per gallon and the special fuel tax by 2 cents per gallon. In conjunction with the cap on the sales tax on gas, this change means the total taxes drivers pay at the pump cannot increase for the rest of the fiscal year, regardless of how high gas prices get.
  • Provides for a $400 million pay-down of the pre-1996 Teacher’s Retirement Fund, which currently has an unfunded liability of $9.8 billion.
  • Provides $215 million to help fund capital projects that were included in the 2021 budget, but that have not moved forward due to skyrocketing construction costs.

Lawmakers did not include Governor Eric Holcomb’s proposed $225 additonal tax refund.

Lawmakers return on Monday.