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
  • GN140421 easter egg hunt 05 Local churches worship, have fun on Easter holiday GOSHEN Encouraged by bright blue skies and near-perfect temperatures in the low 70’s, families and churches from all across Goshen took to their yards Sunday afternoon to participate in a time-honored tradition: the Easter egg hunt. Included among th

    April 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • GN140420 ysk kalil 01.jpg You Should Know: Anthony Kalil GOSHEN -- Goshen native Anthony Kalil has been awarded a Richard Trucker Career Grant, which includes a $10,000 cash prize. He currently lives in New York. The grant is awarded to three of America's top young opera singers who are selected after a by

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • GN140420 The 39 Steps Taking 'Steps' in Bristol BRISTOL -- The Elkhart Civic Theatre crew is set to present the classic Alfred Hitchcock mystery "The 39 Steps" at The Bristol Opera House. Performances of "The 39 Steps" are planned for two weekends -- this coming Friday and Saturday and May 2 and 3

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140420 Kokomo Tornado 03 Recent decisions by FEMA have frustrated state and local leaders KOKOMO, Ind. -- Pamela Jackson thought she was lucky to escape harm as a tornado bore down on her neighborhood last November. She huddled in a bathroom with her two disabled sons, critically ill husband and six other family members as the twister ble

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • GN140418 ghs high mileage team 12.jpg Goshen High School Super Mileage team to compete in national competition for third straight year GOSHEN -- The Goshen High School Super Mileage team is heading to Houston this week to compete in the Shell Eco Marathon for the third consecutive year. The team, led by engineering technology teacher J.J. Johnson, is taking two cars to the competiti

    April 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • BIZ GN0420 tech talk image Mistakes businesses make with their home page Mistakes businesses make with their home page

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140420 boston marathon 04.jpg Undeterred by last year's bombing, several locals return for Monday's Boston Marathon GOSHEN "Boston Strong" is the moniker that emerged from Boston a year ago, describing the way people dealt with the tragic events that marred the 117th annual running of the Boston Marathon. Three spectators were killed and 264 more people injured w

    April 19, 2014 5 Photos

  • GN140419 good friday 04 Local Christians reflect in advance of Easter Sunday GOSHEN - Members of the community gathered at First Presbyterian Church of Goshen to observe Good Friday with a Stations of the Cross tour.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Briefly Elkhart Store opens at mall Creative Life Memories is now open at Concord Mall. The store is owned by Jose Elizalde, a native of Chicago, Goshen College graduate and resident of Elkhart County. CLM specializes in engraving and personalizing small gif

    April 19, 2014

  • GN140419 cyclists return 05 Trio of GC alums return from Pan-American trek GOSHEN — The dream for a pan-American cycling adventure was born for Levi Smucker, Abe Stucky, and Michael Miller on the couches in a dormitory room at Goshen College in late 2010,

    April 18, 2014 5 Photos

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
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest