Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

April 7, 2013

STATEHOUSE: School safety bill weighted down by gun mandate

INDIANAPOLIS — Late last year, when freshman state Sen. Pete Miller was asked to carry Senate Bill 1 in the Indiana General Assembly, he never envisioned the legislation would become the gun bill of the 2013 session.

The bill, as it started out, offered what the father of three school-aged children viewed as a thoughtful approach to school safety in the wake of the tragic Connecticut school shooting: Free up some state dollars to help local schools partner with law enforcement to better guard the safety of their students.

It created a $10 million matching grant fund that school districts could tap to hire law enforcement officers specially trained in school safety and set up a task force of safety experts to study what works best.

But last week, Senate Bill 1 took on a new shape. The House Committee on Education amended the legislation in a way that would make Indiana the first state in the nation to mandate that all public schools have an employee armed with a loaded gun during school hours.

The change propelled the bill into the national headlines and left Miller fielding multiple media inquiries, including one from The New York Times.

It’s also left him feeling a little frustrated, asking for patience as reporters pressed him to weigh in on the change.

“This bill is not about guns,” Miller said. “This bill is about how do we keep kids safe and buildings secure. That was the intent. We have many different opinions and perspectives on how we do that.”

Some of those opinions will likely be voiced when the bill goes to the House Ways and Means Committee Monday.

But Gov. Mike Pence and Senate President David Long have already weighed in. Both said they oppose the state mandating armed employees in schools. Miller, too, thinks the mandate will likely be gone by the time the bill reaches its final form.

Likely left intact will be the $10 million matching grant fund for local schools and the task force of safety experts charged with finding the “best practices” in school security.

Pence likes that approach and said so during a Statehouse news conference Thursday.

“I have a strong bias for local control,” he said. He also cited what he called a model program for school safety developed in Vigo County that could be replicated in other communities.

Text Only
Local News
  • Michigan Prisoner Escape Michigan murderer arraigned in prison escape that led to manhunt in Elkhart, LaGrange counties

    IONIA, Mich. — A convicted murderer who broke out of a western Michigan prison in February has been arraigned on escape, carjacking and kidnapping charges.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140423 Wakarusa Musical 3 'A Kid's Life' portrays sudden techno loss WAKARUSA — The young people of our present day society don’t remember ever having lived their lives without some element of electronic gadgetry becoming involved. For them, it would be difficult to fathom the possibility of a world “off the grid.” So the fourth- and fifth-grade students of Wakarusa Elementary School will offer a comedic and chaotic interpretation of such a dilemma with their upcoming musical “A Kid’s Life.”

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140423 stress relief 03 Furry pals help GC students with dog days of finals GOSHEN - Goshen College students took a break from preparing for final exams to hangout with some four-legged friends Monday afternoon.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140423 FF spring play_3547 Fairfield students to present Oscar Wilde classic BENTON — Fairfield’s musicals and plays have recently left their status as an extracurricular activity and come under the wing of the Performing Arts Department and under the direction of Andrew Muth.

    April 23, 2014 3 Photos

  • Sheriff Brad Rogers_0657 Sheriff travels to Nev. ranch in fed dispute Elkhart County Sheriff Brad Rogers has weighed in on a controversy surrounding a Nevada rancher, and visited the scene of the struggle.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140209 snow storm 05 Elkhart, LaGrange counties denied FEMA aid GOSHEN — Elkhart and LaGrange counties were not among the 19 Indiana counties that had financial aid approved Tuesday by FEMA for a January winter storm.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup BASEBALL Falcons garner road win The Fairfield Falcons posted a 5-4 victory Tuesday evening at Rochester. Dustin Everage (three innings), Andrew Bobeck (three) and Austin Christner (one) pitched for the winners. Everage struck out three to earn the

    April 23, 2014

  • Akela.jpg SLIDESHOW: Pets of the Week Available cats and dogs at the Humane Society of Elkhart County. These loving animals are looking for permanent homes.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN0423 BC IN Common Core Indiana panel approves new school standards

    A panel of Indiana business and education leaders were met with boos and jeers from attendees after they voted overwhelmingly Monday to support new math and English standards set to replace the Common Core in classrooms this fall.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • The week in photos

    April 22, 2014

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

There has been discussion at West Goshen Elementary School to require mandatory student uniforms in the future. How do you feel about the prospect of mandatory student uniforms in a public school environment?

I think it’s an excellent idea that is way overdue
I think it’s a bad idea and would be restrictive for students and parents.
     View Results
AP Video
U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' Obama to Oso: We'll Be Here As Long As It Takes Bon Jovi Helps Open Low-income Housing in Philly S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart New Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees Named 'Piles' of Bodies in South Sudan Slaughter SCOTUS Hears Tv-over-Internet Case Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers