“I do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of Indiana and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge my duties as a member of the House of Representatives of the General Assembly of the State of Indiana to the best of my skill and ability so help me God.”
These are the words each legislator speaks on their very first Organization Day, the technical beginning of the legislative session. This phrase symbolizes our most sincere intent to do our very best to represent the people of our district with honor, integrity and fortitude, no matter how long we’ve been in office. Tuesday, Nov. 19th is Organization Day at the Statehouse, bringing together both chambers of the Indiana Legislature as a kind of kick-off event to start the 2014 session which runs from the beginning of January through the end of March.
The Speaker of the House, State Representative Brian Bosma, commences the legislative session and shares his goals and expectations for the upcoming session. Members of the General Assembly can also now officially submit legislation for consideration in the coming year. The filing deadline is the fourth day of session.
With two new representatives in our midst, this is the time for them to get briefed on the protocols of the House. We will miss Representative Pond and Representative Davis, but I am sure that our new members will jump in with enthusiasm, bringing their unique experiences and knowledge to our caucus.
My focus this session will remain on crafting and supporting legislation for families and children. As the vice-chair of the Family, Children and Human Affairs Committee, I am tasked with the responsibility of gathering information from all sides of an issue in order to make the most informed decision possible about matters directly affecting children and families. I feel that we need to serve and protect our most vulnerable Hoosiers, enabling them to become happy, productive members of society.