INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — There was one last late night of controversy before lawmakers got to the budget vote.
It was over the bill that calls for $100 million dollars in state loans to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for improvements to made over the next 20 years. "Which honestly," said House Minority Leader Scott Pelath, "is really just us giving them the money."
Despite objections the House passed the bill 60-to-37. It also passed the state Senate.
It was almost 1 a.m. when the Senate took up the budget with Democrats calling the 5 percent cut in the state income tax a "poison pill."
"This is the a kind of invisible tax cut," said Sen. Karen Tallian (D-Portage.) "It's smoke and mirrors." The tax cut won't take full effect until 2017 and then will return $85 a year to someone who makes $50,000.
But Republicans insist that taxpayers will benefit and the Senate vote was 39-to-11.
"This budget pays off debts, provides very significant tax relief," said Sen. Luke Kenley (R-Noblesville.) "It's honestly balanced each year."
The arguments were similar in the House. "This budget miserably fails the middle class," said Rep. Greg Porter (D-Indianapolis.) "Where are the jobs?"
But again the Republican super majority prevailed with the budget passing 70-to-30. All of the Republicans voted for it and so did one Democrat in the House and two in the state Senate.
And with that the session ended well in advance of a Monday deadline. Lawmakers won't be back in session until January of next year. The first portion of the income tax cut won't take effect until a year after that.
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