What an exciting time to be at the Statehouse! This session is shaping up to be a productive and busy time for the Legislature. With the bill filing deadline passed, a new governor inaugurated and 24 freshmen House members sworn in, there is a different dynamic at the Statehouse, but the same business is still to be conducted.
First of all, I would like to take a moment to congratulate Governor Mike Pence on his new role as the highest officeholder in our state. He has big shoes to fill, but I have no doubt that he will continue on the path that Governor Daniels’ forged, positioning our state for continued prosperity. Things around the Statehouse may change a little under Governor Pence’s leadership, but it will be refreshing to have some new ideas and many new faces working with our Legislature to better Indiana.
The first two weeks of session were educational, rewarding and demanding. January 14, the last day to file bills, was a mad rush to the clerk’s office with everyone waiting in line to ensure that their bills were ready to go. Each legislator is allowed to file up to 10 bills, but I decided to use this session as a learning experience. I am a co-author of two bills, but I chose to focus mainly on my duties to my committees and to absorb as much knowledge as I can before I start voting on legislation that affects the lives of Hoosiers.
As the vice-chairman of the Family, Children and Human Affairs Committee, I have met with representatives from the Department of Child Services, the Mental Health Association and other related agencies, and have learned a great deal about how I can contribute to this committee. My passion for helping families and children along with my newfound awareness of the issues affecting Indiana will assist me in making decisions to strengthen the family ties of our state’s most vulnerable Hoosiers.
If you are interested in following legislation as it is passed through the House or the Senate, I urge you to visit our website at www.in.gov/legislative. On the left column, click on the Bills & Resolutions tab and find the bill you are interested in. These bills will potentially affect your daily life, so I encourage you to stay up-to-date on what is happening at the Statehouse.
In order to help me better serve you, I invite you to fill out my 2013 legislative survey I mailed out and return it to me at the Statehouse or to complete the survey online at www.in.gov/h55. As your state representative, it is important for me to hear your views and concerns on issues facing our state. You are also always welcome to contact me by phone at 317-232-9850 or by email at email@example.com.
(State Rep. Cindy Ziemke serves as Vice Chairman of the Family, Children and Human Affairs Committee. She also serves on the Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development Committee and the Select Committee on Government Reduction. Rep. Ziemke represents portions of Rush, Fayette, Franklin, Ripley and Decatur counties.)