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Affordable housing, consumer protections lead Prosperity Indiana’s legislative priorities

A red, white and blue "now leasing" flag waves in front of an apartment building
Lauren Chapman
/
IPB News
Prosperity Indiana's Andrew Bradley said the organization will focus on concerns over the “supply, access and habitability” of affordable housing.

Indiana’s legislative session begins Monday, and many organizations are preparing to advocate for legislation and change throughout the state.

Andrew Bradley is the policy director for Prosperity Indiana, an organization focusing on providing all Hoosiers with economic and social opportunities. He said the organization is focusing on three key areas this legislative session.

“Every year we always work on affordable housing issues, we work on resources for community development organizations, and then we emphasize policies that address asset building and consumer protections for Hoosiers,” he said.

Bradley said the organization focuses on feedback from its members to determine legislative priorities. He said members are currently concerned about the “supply, access and habitability” of affordable housing.

So we're going to be working on legislation that helps strengthen the enforcement of health and safety standards when it comes to housing, and ensure that unaccountable out-of-state investors aren't able to drain the resource of housing out of communities and for individuals,” he said.

READ MORE: Advocates: Bad policy caused Indiana’s housing crisis

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Bradley added that with increased costs, consumer protection is another big area the organization will focus on.

We're also looking at options to be able to strengthen consumer protections, including capping predatory payday lending, and making sure that we don't increase rates of current lending products that are on the market,” he said.

Bradley said this includes not increasing the rates of things like cars, which would put prices for these products out of the reach of ordinary Hoosiers.

Bradley said another thing the organization will focus on is preventing changes to the state’s tax code that would negatively impact vulnerable Hoosiers.

“We know that there's an ongoing State and Local Tax Review Task Force,” he said. “Our members think that it's really important to prevent efforts to make regressive changes to Indiana's tax code that would increase the burden on the most vulnerable Hoosiers and the community economic development organizations that serve them.”

Bradley said the organization also has urgent and emerging policy priorities that will continue to take shape during the session — including combating barriers in education and health care, and keeping costs low for wealth-building opportunities for vulnerable Hoosiers.

Violet is our daily news reporter. Contact her at vcomberwilen@wfyi.org or follow her on Twitter at @ComberWilen.

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