|From the Office of State Senator Eric Bassler – District 39:|
|The Senate Republican Caucus recently announced our legislative agenda for the 2021 session. State Senator Eric Bassler wrote, “My colleagues and I will continue our commitment to maintaining our record of fiscal responsibility by passing the state’s ninth consecutive balanced budget. We are also committed to transparency and public access, including as it pertains to redistricting.” They are also prioritizing the following policies:|
Give businesses, individuals and health care entities liability protections from COVID-19 lawsuits
To provide businesses and organizations the confidence to fully reopen operations, Senate Bill 1 would help protect businesses and individuals by giving them immunity from civil liability for damages resulting from a COVID-19 exposure on their property or during an activity they organized. This immunity does not apply if the party engages in gross negligence or willful or wanton misconduct. Likewise, Senate Bill 4 would expand the existing civil liability protections that apply to health care services rendered during a disaster emergency.
Fully fund students who are virtual due to COVID-19
To support schools who have had to dramatically change their operations due to the coronavirus pandemic, Senate Bill 2 would provide full per-student funding for the remainder of the school year to schools who have students learning virtually due to COVID-19.
Codify telehealth expansions enacted during the pandemic
Senate Bill 3 would permanently codify many of the expansions in telehealth implemented during the pandemic to ensure that all Hoosiers have access to the health care they need regardless of where they live.
Improve local government accountability
Senate Bill 5, which Bassler co-authored, would allow anyone who is subject to a public emergency-related enforcement action under a local health department order to appeal their case to the relevant local legislative body. Many local health departments have acted admirably to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic, but the reality is that appointed health departments – rather than local elected officials – are currently able to make enforcement decisions that have a major impact on members of the community. SB 5 would improve public accountability by giving elected officials greater oversight of these decisions.
To stay up to date on what is happening at the Statehouse during session, visit iga.in.gov to view session meetings, committee hearings, calendars, proposed legislation, vote tallies and more.