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2/20/2012 6:46:00 PM
EDITORIAL: Lawmakers should get work done


Pity the poor Indiana General Assembly members. They’ve been hard at work since early January, dealing with “emotionally draining” issues like right-to-work legislation, and they’d like to sign off early, ending this year’s session on March 9 instead of March 14.

They justify this shortening of the session by saying it will save almost $10,000 that would be paid to staff and lawmakers for expenses.

Wouldn’t it be nice if average workers could end work whenever we wanted or when we said we were tired? How far would you get if you proposed that to your boss?

We ought to tell our lawmakers the same thing our bosses would say: Back to work.

Yes, this “short” session has been contentious, as many are. Still, the Legislature had most of the week off leading up to the Super Bowl, a rare perk in the middle of the session. How much vacation time have you had in 2012?

Saving a few thousand dollars won’t make much of a dent in the state budget, especially when there are issues still to be addressed. We’d like state lawmakers to take the time and do it right, rather than cut out early.

For example, what is going to be done with the $320 million in “found” money the state discovered it had late last year? Is this the time to use it for education, job development, infrastructure? How can it be redistributed around the state in an equitable manner so that projects like the Cline Avenue bridge get done?

Instead, lawmakers hope to tidy up a few laws and maybe pass the smoking ban at last.

They can do more. Get back to work.

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