Indiana General Assembly Opening Day: Play Ball!
ABATE of Indiana
The 2022 session of the Indiana General Assembly began today, so I spent the day at the Statehouse. It was certainly different than it was last year. It was kind of like a reunion, as it’s been about 20 months since many of these folks have seen each other. It was good to have everybody back in the people’s house. Just FYI, I could probably count the number of those wearing masks on one hand.
Remember that this is the “short session” lasting only 30 session days and concluding in March. With the schedule shortened, things tend to happen quickly. At this point, about 250 bills have been introduced. There are several that we’ll be watching, but there is not currently anything specific to motorcycling or that is on our agenda. As of yet, we’ve not seen or heard about an ethanol bill. If I was to bet, I’d expect them to introduce a follow-up bill to “strike while the iron is hot”. We are just waiting for the other shoe to drop and will share information as soon as we have it.
While it’s good to be back in Statehouse, there are some changes. The legislative information office (often referred to as “the bill room”) no longer has live people sitting at the windows. This may seem like a minor thing that could just be written off as changing times. Call me paranoid, but I’m concerned that there may be other changes that could get blamed on the pandemic. Sort of like how many hotels discovered that they could get by without providing breakfast and daily housekeeping, so now they’re gone permanently. Or all the people that started working from home and now there are a bunch of empty buildings downtown.
The point to this rant is, even though we do not have a specific issue (yet?), we MUST have a presence and let the legislators, and everyone else, know that we are paying attention. Encourage as many people as you can to attend ABATE Day at the Statehouse next week and I assure you that we will give them something to speak with their representatives about.
It’s been two years (almost to the day) since we’ve had our folks in the Statehouse and we don’t want them to forget about us. We can’t let ABATE Day become another casualty of COVID.
Just for grins, I’ve included a photo of me with Andy Bauman, who some of you may remember as the Clerk of the Senate. It appears that we see the same barber. I said that I’d get my hair cut and do something with the beard after the first of the year… I just didn’t specify when.
ABATE of Indiana, Inc.