Indiana Ranked 16th on Fiscal Solvency

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Via USA Today

The Mercatus Center, a public policy research group, ranked the 50 states based on how well each state government planned spending in fiscal 2013 — the most recent year for which data was available — as well as their future financial prospects. from annual budgeting to cash to pay bills, to funding for pensions and long-term plans.

Did Indiana Just Become a Medical Tourism Destination?

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On March 24th, Governor Mike Pence signed into law the ‘Right To Try’ Legislation. Here is snapshot of what the law entails from WFYI:

    Terminally ill patients in Indiana can now use experimental drugs that have not received final FDA approval. Gov. Mike Pence signed so called “Right to Try” legislation into law Tuesday.

    The “Right to Try” law allows terminally ill patients to use medications that have gone through the first of the FDA’s three-step approval process.

HotAir.com picked up on the story and threw out some concerns of the FDA possibly stepping in and complicating the legislation:

    Indiana’s legislature and Governor Mike Pence have tried to bridge the gap by passing a “Right to Try” law that allows patients to make the choice on experimental medication, and which protects manufacturers from liability if the results go poorly. The question raises ethical questions about where the line between mercy and human experimentation may be crossed, but CBS’ Chicago affiliate raises the question about whether this crosses a bureaucratic line with the FDA first.

I am strongly in favor of this legislation and hope Indiana tells the FDA to back off. If I’m terminally ill I should be able to have the decision in choosing treatment that is experimental. I support the legislation shielding drug companies from liability as well. In the field of medicine this can be beneficial in helping drug developers in researching the drugs to better the product down the road if it doesn’t workout in testing on people.

Lets hope this is the step in the right direction of medicine opening up to more freedom for patients and those who want to help them.

Is Marc Benioff Breaking the Law With His Indiana Ban?

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SalesForce.com CEO Marc Benioff announced Thursday he is reducing the companies investment in Indiana due to Governor Mike Pence signing RFRA legislation.

There is nothing illegal with a CEO of a company being politically or socially active in government current events. The problem lies within the fact his company is a publicly traded investment. This means its listed on the stock exchange for all to buy. When you are a publicly traded company you must follow rules set forth by the Securities Exchange Commission when making big investment moves so stockholders can see. I will list a few but compliance can be found at Investor.gov:

    Current Reports on Form 8-K. Companies file this report with the SEC to announce major events that shareholders should know about, including bankruptcy proceedings, a change in corporate leadership (such as a new director or high-level officer), and preliminary earnings announcements.

And here is another rule for the company to follow moving any major investment out of Indiana that could affect shareholders investments. Shareholders would possibly need to vote on the matter:

    Proxy Statements. Shareholder voting constitutes one of the key rights of shareholders. They may elect members of the board of directors, cast non-binding votes on executive compensation, approve or reject proposed mergers and acquisitions, or vote on other important topics. Proxy statements describe the matters to be voted upon and often disclose information on the company’s executive compensation policies and practices.

To be clear, Marc Benioff is not claiming to be shutting down any operations at this time. A move like that would MOST DEFITINETLY have to be filed and voted on by shareholders. From my a**hole business experience I think he is bluffing and within months will be fully operational in sending people to Indiana for business. I’m positive his lawyers got a hold of him and made him carefully word his statement after the first one posted above. If he does start moving assets out like employees or selling off property without notification, then he will be in violation.

I will be following Investor.gov to monitor his threats.

Indiana Governor Pence Submits 2016 – 2017 Budget

Indiana Governor Mike Pence submitted his budget proposal to the House and Senate for approval. The two bodies will debate the bill and then vote on a final budget at a later date.

I went over to the PDF file the state put out on overall spending areas of the budget. The one big glaring issue is the amount of federal funding the state receives for whatever programs are tied with that. Many people will argue that it captures the money Hoosiers pay in federal taxes and brings it back in the state. In that case, the money shouldn’t leave peoples paychecks at and just have it working economically in the first place.

Here are some budget numbers I found in the proposal. The proposal is for fiscal years 2016/2017:

Both years will cost Hoosier’s around $62 Billion

Education will eat up about 33% of the budget with spending projected at $22.5 Billion

Welfare (Food Stamps, Welfare, Medicaid, etc.) is projected at $28 Billion. $19 Billion of that is sent to Indiana by the Federal government. Start grasping we spend more on welfare then education.

Public Safety spending for the budget cycle is $3 Billion. I know Indiana prisons got more money but expect that to go up throughout the years. Criminals now have to serve 75% of the sentences.

The Governor’s office projected federal funds contributing to the budget for a total of $24.9 Billion.

Indiana Schools Back in Session: Examination of Their Debt

Indiana public schools are swinging into full gear and with that, their financial books are starting to get published in the back pages of your local newspaper. Most of their financial information from a broad spectrum is posted on the state website and can be found in the Department of Education “School Financial Reports” portal.

The debt held by public education has swelled in recent years in municipalities. For numerous years, Indiana school boards were able to pass tax increases and spending agendas without much say from the public. Since 2008 school boards must get these items on a ballot for voters to decide.

Here are some listings of a handful of school corporations around the state and how much “total principal” they owe. Time period covered is July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013:

Brownsburg $188 Million

Avon $236 Million

Indianapolis Public Schools $642 Million

South Madison Schools $69 Million

Greenwood Community $20 Million

Plainfield Community $127 Million

Greenfield-Central Com Schools $96 Million

Carmel Clay Schools $153 Million

Zionsville Community Schools $200 Million

Fort Wayne Community Schools $133 Million

Rochester Community $13 Million

Seymour Community Schools $22 Million

Vincennes Community $31 Million

Lake Station Community Schools $15 Million

Tell City-Troy Twp School Corp $24 Million

Fremont Community Schools $5 Million

Vigo County School $58 Million