- Gov. Mike Pence Tuesday signing and vetoing legislation
Gov. Mike Pence vetoed his first two bills on Tuesday, nixing legislation that would have required professional licensing and regulations for several jobs. Pence said he's been pushing for less occupational licensing - not more.
"Lower taxes and less regulation, including fewer licensing requirements, will mean more jobs for Hoosiers," said Pence. "I am vetoing these licensing bills because I believe they create barriers to the marketplace for Hoosiers and restrict competition."
Pence vetoed House Bill 1242, which would have required licenses for diabetes regulators. He also vetoed Senate Bill 273, which would have created licenses for anesthesiologist assistants and dietitians, as well as state certification for music therapists.
Rep. David Frizzell, R-Indianapolis, said earlier this year that he wants doctors to feel confident when they send patients to diabetes educators.
"Diabetes is an epidemic in Indiana," Frizzell said about HB 1242, which he authored. "Having a thorough education is necessary for diabetes patients to adequately manage their disease, and requiring licensure provides a basic standard for that education."
The General Assembly can override the vetoes with simple majority votes when lawmakers meet again at a technical session in the coming weeks, in November for an Organization Day or during next year's legislative session. However, lawmakers have not met for a technical session in at least a decade. The bills passed with overwhelming votes in the House and Senate. But lawmakers did not approve a Pence-backed bill that would have created a new committee to study existing occupational licenses.
According to Pence's office, licensing has "exploded" over the past decade. In 2004 approximately 340,000 Hoosiers held a professional license. Today there are more than 470,000, representing a 38 percent increase. Indiana's population has increased 7 percent in that same time period, the governor's office said.
"I have been willing to sign licensing legislation that opens new opportunities for employment or streamlines existing practices and procedures, and I will continue to do so," Pence said in a statement. "However, the bills that I am vetoing today do not meet that standard."
Lesley Weidenbener is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news service powered by Franklin College journalism students and faculty.