STATEHOUSE REPORT FROM THE DESK OF SENATOR LONG

STATEHOUSE REPORT

 

New state laws effective July 1 are the fruits of legislators’ work during the 2006 legislative session. A year ago, these laws were simply ideas. After months of review and surviving the arduous legislative process, they now will affect Hoosiers’ everyday lives.

A complete listing of enactments can be found on my web site or by contacting my office and requesting a 2006 Summary of New Laws. My contact information is on this card.

The following is a sampling of bills that successfully navigated the General Assembly this year: 

Senate Enrolled Act 208: This measure allows information about an applicant’s medical condition to be included on a driver’s license, identification card or learner’s permit. Such information may be helpful to paramedics or other emergency workers and can save lives. The BMV will include an identifying symbol and a summary of the information on the card.

SEA 111: The goal of this law is to improve nutrition at schools and increase students’ physical activity. The bill makes several provisions regarding students’ health and nutrition, including the establishment of a student health advisory council, nutritional requirements for foods and beverages, and daily physical activity for students. Hoosier’s poor health is leading to increases in health insurance and lost efficiency due to illnesses, and changes need to be made at an early age. Healthier Hoosiers will increase the productivity of the state while improving their own quality of life.

House Enrolled Act 1420: This law allows an employer to offer discounted health insurance to non-smokers. In addition to providing an incentive for smokers to adopt healthier habits, this law may have a positive impact on our state’s job climate. The Indiana Economic Development Corporation supported this measure because of the possibility of lowering health care costs, making Indiana more attractive to employers looking to relocate.

HEA 1108: Known as “Lindsay’s Law”, this measure addresses aggressive driving. Penalties are more severe if it is committed knowingly and intentionally, if it causes bodily harm and if it causes death. The bill was proposed following a fatal accident in March 2004, when 17-year-old Lindsay Thompson tried to avoid an aggressive driver. She lost control of her car and hit a truck; Lindsay and her passenger died at the scene. Under Lindsay’s Law, a person engages in aggressive driving if he or she commits at least three of the following: Following another vehicle too closely; unsafe operation of a vehicle; overtaking another vehicle on the right by driving off the roadway; unsafe stopping or slowing; unnecessary sounding of the horn; failure to yield; failure to obey a traffic control device; speeding; and repeatedly flashing headlights.

The Waynedale News Staff

Sen. David Long

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