« Ind. Gov't. - More on: The Legislative Council sets Technical Correction Day to amend HEA 1006, the Criminal Sentencing Law [Updated] | Main | Ind. Gov't. - "Indiana lawmakers to study effects of casino competition" »

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Ind. Gov't. - More on: The Legislative Council sets Technical Correction Day to amend HEA 1006, the Criminal Sentencing Law

Updating this ILB post from yesterday, there are more details now on the upcoming Technical Correction Day. Here is what Jim Shella added to his WISHTV blog post:

Over a two year period state lawmakers completely rewrote the Indiana sentencing guidelines to make sure that violent criminals serve more time in prison and non-violent criminals serve less. The governor signed the bill into law before mistakes were found. Lawmakers won’t specify what those mistakes are but they are serious.

“Everyone walked away with the impression that one of the crimes was in the enhanced penalty column,” said House Speaker Brian Bosma, “and it, in fact, was not during the drafting and redrafting of the bill.”

“The intent of the bill was to make sure that people who commit crimes against kids get the fullest punishment available,” said House Minority Leader Scott Pelath, “and there may have been a couple technical drafting errors with respect to sections like that.” Also, some minor crimes got more serious penalties.

The other necessary correction involves a tax on alternative fuels. The way a new law was written it places a tax on some alternative fuels that were included by mistaken. Again, lawmakers wouldn’t specify the fuels involved.

Chelsea Schneider has a long $$ story in the Evansville Courier & Press. She writes:
Technical changes to both bills [HEA 1006 and HEA 1180] will first be considered by the Legislative Council, whose membership includes Republican and Democratic leaders from both chambers, the morning of June 17. The full House and Senate will then review and vote on the changes in the afternoon.

The proposed changes will be circulated to the public at least a week before the June meeting.

House Democratic leader Scott Pelath said there was bipartisan support for the June session day. * * *"My general point is we don't want to make a habit of technical correction day. The fact we have one is a good thing."

Gov. Mike Pence will also need to approve the changes. * * *

"It should be an extraordinary event," Bosma said. "The issues we are talking about are of enough important - dealing with criminals and dealing with taxes - we thought it was appropriate to return."

From Eric Berman's WIBC report (with audio):
Senate Judiciary Chairman Brent Steele (R-Bedford) says he's concerned one of the changes goes beyond a mere correction to a dispute over how much leeway judges will have to suspend sentences. Bosma is adamant there won't be any changes to the substance of the bills, and says he and Senate President Pro Tem David Long (R-Fort Wayne) are satisfied the changes are just fixing drafting errors.

The General Assembly sets aside one day after its regular session as a potential "technical corrections day" to address errors that can't wait until the next session gets rolling in January. It used that authority for the first time last year, not to fix typos but to override a gubernatorial veto.[See 2013 ILB report here]

Here is the text of the 1995 statute authorizing a technical correction day, IC 2-2.1-1-2.5:
IC 2-2.1-1-2.5. First regular technical session

Sec. 2.5. (a) Before the first regular session adjourns sine die, the general assembly may adopt a concurrent resolution to fix a day to convene the first regular technical session of the general assembly. The day fixed under this subsection may not be earlier than thirty (30) days after the first regular session adjourns sine die.
(b) Only the following may be considered and acted upon during a first regular technical session:
(1) Bills enacted during the first regular session vetoed by the governor.
(2) Bills to correct conflicts among bills enacted during the first regular session.
(3) Bills to correct technical errors in bills enacted during the first regular session.
(c) The first regular technical session must adjourn sine die before midnight after it convenes.
(d) The concurrent resolution adopted under subsection (a) may provide that the first regular technical session is not required to convene if the speaker of the house of representatives and the president pro tempore of the senate jointly issue an order finding that the purposes for which a regular technical session may meet under subsection (b) do not justify the cost and inconvenience of meeting in a regular technical session.
(e) If the general assembly does not meet in a regular technical session under this section, the general assembly shall consider and act upon vetoes of bills enacted during the first regular session at the next second regular session.
(f) For purposes of Article 5, Section 14 of the Constitution of the State of Indiana, the first regular technical session is not considered a regular session if the general assembly does not consider or act upon vetoes of bills enacted during the first regular session under this section.
As added by P.L.4-1995, SEC.5.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on May 15, 2014 08:45 AM
Posted to Indiana Government