Governor Mike Pence signed SEA 343 into law Thursday with representatives of Vanderburgh County Farm Bureau, CORE and Indiana Farm Bureau in attendance.
The bill includes a provision sought by Farm Bureau that separates the votes of rural residents from those of the city residents. SEA 343 provides when a merger of a municipality and another political subdivision is proposed, the votes of the residents of the municipality and the residents who live outside of the municipality must be totaled separately. The reorganization can be approved only if both groups of voters approve the proposed reorganization. The bill was passed by large margins in both houses.
Representatives from Vanderburgh County Farm Bureau and CORE, which successfully defeated the November merger referendum involving Vanderburgh County and the City of Evansville, were among those who testified in favor of the bill.
"We would like to thank the House, Senate and Governor for making these changes to have a much more fair process," said Vanderburgh County Farm Bureau President Bruce Blackford. "We also want to thank all the residents who have supported us in this endeavor."
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