An Update on HB 1100: 3/16/22
While House Bill 1100 was denied a vote in the Senate, language from the bill resurfaced and was added to HB 1211. The following provisions from HB 1100 were added to HB 1211:
- The requirement to update rules every 4 years (rather than every 7 years)
- The requirement that all emergency rules need to be vetted by the Attorney General
Thanks to your calls and emails, HEC’s efforts, those of our partners’, and the Holcomb Administration’s own efforts, Governor Eric Holcomb vetoed HB 1211! Please thank the Governor for his foresight at email@example.com.
An Update on HB 1100: 2/24/22
On February 24th, 2022, House Bill 1100 was denied a vote in the Senate Commerce and Technology Committee, and appears to be dead. We say “appears” to be dead because there’s always a chance that the language could be resurrected in the final weeks of the session, but we are cautiously optimistic.
Thank you to everyone who called or emailed their state senators, and those who traveled–in some cases twice–to attend the committee hearing!
Paralyzing State Agency Action
Under the executive branch, Indiana’s state agencies have experience in interpreting and enforcing Indiana’s laws. HB 1100 would have significantly limited our state agencies’ ability to adopt timely and appropriate state standards to protect public health and the environment.
At its core, HB 1100 would have:
- Added new burdens for agencies in adopting and renewing their administrative rules
- Expanded legislative involvement in the executive branch role in implementing state laws
- Included “no more stringent than” language that would prevent the state from adopting rules that are more stringent than corresponding federal rules
HB 1100 was an astonishingly far-reaching with the potential to constrain all state administrative agencies, boards and commissions. This would have no doubt limited executive branch authority to shape public policy on a variety of fronts and would require a part-time, citizen-led legislature to micro-manage state public policy on a vast scale. On the environmental front, limiting the authority of state agencies that play such a vital role in protecting public health, disadvantaged populations, and our environment was of particular concern.
“No More Stringent Than”
The term “no more stringent than” was not defined in the bill. This meant that there would have been conflicting interpretations of how and when this restriction applies.
In many cases, federal regulations grant discretion to state agencies to craft state-specific rules. So, in instances where Indiana has been granted this discretion, it would have been difficult if not impossible to determine which rule is “more stringent”.
Here are three environmental examples:
- Narrative Standards: One example is Indiana’s water quality standards – which include both numeric and narrative water quality criteria, and together provide the foundation for the protection of Indiana’s rivers and lakes.
- Designated Uses: Designated uses for waterways – which are the uses that the waterbody should support and are established by IDEM. These designations are Indiana specific, and best decided by Hoosiers and our state officials.
- Storm water Pollution Plans: Storm water pollution prevention plans are also based on narrative criteria and Indiana-specific best practices for controlling storm water pollution.
A Timeline of House Bill 1100
- January 4, 2022: Introduced and assigned to House Committee on Government and Regulatory Reform
- January 12, 2022: Passed out of committee with a 8-2 vote
- January 20, 2022: Referred to House Committee on Ways and Means
- January 24, 2022: Passed out of committee with a 10-5 vote
- January 26, 2022: Passed a floor amendment vote on the House floor
- January 27, 2022: Passed the House with a 61-29 vote
- February 2, 2022: Referred to Senate Committee on Commerce and Technology
- February 9, 2022: We expect a committee hearing on HB 1100 to occur on February 17th (the Committee’s agenda for 2/17)
- February 17. 2022: Briefly heard and amended modestly in the Committee on Commerce and Technology.
- February 24, 2022: A landmark victory for public interest! Chairperson Perfect denied HB 1100 a vote today in Committee, ensuring that it will not move on to the Senate floor. We remain vigilant as the Session draws to a close.