Chesterton Tribune



New law ensures continued funding for RDA but makes it more accountable

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The Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA) will continue to receive state funding, under House Enrolled Act 1398, co-authored by State Rep. Ed Soliday and signed into law by Gov. Mike Pence.

“The RDA was created by the General Assembly in 2005 to spark economic development in Northwest Indiana,” according to a statement released by the Indiana House on Thursday. Over the years RDA-funded projects “have strengthened the infrastructure in the area but the responsibilities of the RDA have become indistinct.” HEA 1398, accordingly provides for specific projects the RDA is able to plan, pending approval by the state’s Budget Committee.

“The RDA is focused on redeveloping Northwest Indiana and creating a more financially stable environment,” Soliday said in a statement released on Thursday by the Indiana House. “They have some of the best methods for connecting residents in our area to good jobs, so more Hoosiers are able to support their families and contribute to the business climate of Northwest Indiana. However, the RDA needs guaranteed resources in order to continue their plans, and I was proud to work towards that goal this session.”

“This is a necessary measure which would ensure that the RDA remains accountable and credible to taxpayers,” said Rep. Hal Slager, R-Schererville, who co-authored the legislation. “By refocusing the responsibilities of the RDA to regional transportation, infrastructure projects and implementing the Marquette Plan, the duties for the RDA will be clear-cut, giving infrastructure projects in the area stability.”

HEA 1398 also requires members of the RDA Board of Directors to be senior officers with financial experience, increasing “accountability for Hoosiers.”

HEA 1398 went into effect July 1.



Posted 7/24/2015




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