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Gov. Eric Holcomb releases 2019 Next Level Agenda

(Photo Supplied / Holcomb for Governor)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO) – Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb outlined his 2019 Next Level Agenda Thursday.

The agenda continues his focus on jobs, economic growth, health, infrastructure and government service, and includes five separate sections:

1. Cultivate a strong and diverse economy – Approve an eighth straight balanced budget as well as modernize economic development tools to increase competitiveness, economic diversity and flexibility.

2. Maintain and build the state’s infrastructure – Gov. Holcomb’s $1 billion Next Level Connections program will expand broadband services in rural Indiana, grow the state’s systems of trails, create more nonstop international flights and move up the completion of major highway projects.

3. Develop a 21st Century skilled and ready workforce – Ensure all Hoosiers have the tools they need to find meaningful work and careers. Priorities include expanding the Next Level Jobs initiative, developing a strategy to make Indiana teacher salaries competitive with surrounding states, and helping more high school students earn postsecondary credentials before they graduate.

4. Public health and the drug epidemic – The agenda calls for the adoption of the recommendations in the school safety report and the implementation of the Department of Child Services reform recommendations. The state will also establish an obstetric navigator program in areas with the highest infant mortality rates and require verbal screening to assess substance-use disorder in pregnancy. Gov. Holcomb will also remain focused on fighting the drug epidemic with expanded recovery housing and further development of Family Recovery Courts.

5. Deliver great government service – Continue to modernize state government to better serve citizens and businesses. This includes passing bias crimes legislation as well as using more technology to enable better customer service.

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