Governor Mike Pence has allowed two gaming bills and a partial moratorium on the construction of new nursing home facilities to become law without his signature. Pence, who left over the weekend to lead an economic development mission to China, also vetoed a bill involving electronic gambling on horse races.

May 8, 2015

News Release

Indianapolis, Ind. — Today, Governor Mike Pence announced he will allow two gaming bills to become law without his signature and vetoed a third gaming bill.

The Governor will allow HEA 1540 to become law without his signature. This legislation allows riverboat casinos to move on land within their current footprint, outlines procedures for legislative ratification of a tribal gaming compact negotiated between the Governor and the Pokagaon Band of the Potawatomi Indians, as well as establishing caps for casinos and racinos.

He also will allow SEA 252 to become law without his signature. This law will increase per diem for Horse Racing Commission members, allows the Horse Racing Commission to use breed development funds to promote the horse racing industry, and codifies the current standards regarding days of racing as previously established by the Indiana Horse Racing Commission.

“Most Hoosiers know that I oppose an expansion of gaming in Indiana, but I recognize that gaming has become an important part of the economy of many communities in our state and is an important part of our state budget,” said Governor Pence. “From early in the legislative process, I made it clear that I would not stand in the way of reforms that would allow these businesses to remain competitive with surrounding states so long as it did not constitute an expansion of gaming in Indiana. HEA 1540 and SEA 252 meet this standard and, as such, I will permit them to become law without signature.”

The Governor vetoed HEA 1270, which allows Advance Deposit Wagering, expanding gambling on horse races to include not only in-person bets, but also those made by electronic means.

“This legislation is contrary to my long-time position against online gaming,” said Governor Pence. “Advance Deposit Wagering, not currently permitted in Indiana, would also violate my position on expanding gaming here in Indiana.”

The Governor did sign SEA 327, which applies to charity gaming at schools, churches, veterans organizations and police and fire departments.

Source: Office of Indiana Governor Mike Pence

May 8, 2015

News Release

Indianapolis – Governor Mike Pence issued the following statement regarding SEA 460, which provides a three-year partial moratorium on the construction of new nursing home facilities. Previous administrations have enacted similar or more comprehensive moratoriums in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2011.

“As a strong advocate of free-market economics, I hesitate to support any restriction on commerce, but in an industry that derives 85 percent of its revenue from state and federal sources, we must always consider the impact of our policies on the cost to taxpayers. Despite my reservations, I am willing to allow a partial moratorium to become law without my signature because, on balance, it serves the interests of Indiana taxpayers and gives industry time to adjust to anticipated changes to long-term care.

“Hoosiers should know that this is a partial moratorium that includes several prudent exceptions that will not restrict construction of replacement nursing facilities and the construction of new nursing facilities in counties where occupancy rates exceed 90 percent. This legislation also will not impact the construction of assisted living and independent living facilities, which remain key to the state’s overall long-term care strategy.”

“A three-year pause on new facility construction will give our state and the long-term care industry the opportunity to achieve a better balance between institutional care and home- and community-based services while we engage in a much-needed discussion about reforms to our current Medicaid reimbursement formula.”

Indiana ranks higher than all but three states in the percentage of Medicaid long-term care dollars spent on nursing home care. In addition, the state has a 77 percent occupancy rate when the national average is 86 percent. A study by the Family and Social Services Administration concluded that, based on the current Medicaid reimbursement formula, a three-year pause on new nursing facility construction will save approximately $24 million in Medicaid expenditures.

Source: Office of Indiana Governor Mike Pence

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