Whitney Downard

Whitney Downard

A native of upstate New York, Whitney previously covered statehouse politics for CNHI’s nine Indiana papers, focusing on long-term healthcare facilities and local government. Prior to her foray into Indiana politics, she worked as a general assignment reporter for The Meridian Star in Meridian, Mississippi. Whitney is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University (#GoBonnies!), a community theater enthusiast and cat mom.

Noblesville mayor pushes state to invest in local mental health programs

By: - November 20, 2023

In recent years, Indiana leaders have jumpstarted conversations about mental health crises but, for one Central Indiana mayor, more could be done to dedicate state dollars to the cause. “I appreciate state leaders talking about erasing the stigma … (but) I think I was desiring to see more. I want to see something in place […]

Candidates Chambers, Hill release gubernatorial proposals

By: - November 16, 2023

One GOP candidate for governor proposed massive tax changes Wednesday while another outlined a plan to strengthen public safety. Former Attorney General Curtis Hill has a six-point economic plan that slashes several taxes while former Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers has a seven-point proposal to strengthen support for first responders.  Candidates have slowly rolled out […]

Doden, Braun exchange shots over qualified immunity, IEDC record

By: - November 16, 2023

Gubernatorial candidates Eric Doden and U.S. Senator Mike Braun traded jabs Wednesday over the legal practice of qualified immunity and the use of state tax dollars in economic development — an escalation in the 2024 race to succeed Gov. Eric Holcomb. Doden released a video endorsement from Henry County Sheriff John Sproles decrying Braun’s 2020 […]

Gaming commission left off budget committee agenda dealing with fines and fees

By: - November 15, 2023

Agencies critical to the ongoing operations of state government justified their fees before the State Budget Committee Tuesday but one voice was notably absent: the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC).  “I don’t know if anybody else noticed it but I did,” Rep. Greg Porter, D-Indianapolis, said as the meeting concluded. “I’m very concerned about it.” One […]

ICC partners with Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics to host panel on Org Day

By: - November 14, 2023

The Indiana Capital Chronicle and the Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics will host a panel discussion on Tuesday’s Organization Day — a sort of orientation day for new legislators and the ceremonial start of the 2024 legislative session. The Nov. 21 panel will include four experts on Indiana Statehouse politics to preview key issues […]

Health care committee adopts final report, targets prior authorizations

By: - November 14, 2023

The interim Health Care Cost Oversight Task Force unanimously agreed on a final report Monday detailing its recommended legislative proposals for the upcoming session, including a closer look at prior authorization denials, physician reimbursements and mergers between health care providers. “The seven recommendations we’re looking at today continue Indiana’s focus on transparency in the health […]

State, localities start to spend the $507 million from National Opioids Settlement

By: - November 13, 2023

Almost a year after distributions started from the National Opioid Settlement, only $7.1 million has been put to use so far in Indiana as local units of government wrestle with how to make the most of the payments. Over the next two decades, tens of billions of dollars will flow into state coffers nationally from […]

Former Shelbyville Rep. Eberhart agrees to plead guilty to felony charge

By: - November 10, 2023

Former Shelbyville Rep. Sean Eberhart has signed paperwork to plead guilty to a federal felony charge related to his conduct as a lawmaker, specifically related to Spectacle Entertainment’s bid to relocate two casinos from Lake Michigan to “other areas beneficial to Spectacle.” In a Friday morning release, the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District […]

Ten agencies spent over $5M on spot bonuses

By: - November 7, 2023

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation doesn’t have the largest headcount, but the relatively small state agency spent an outsized amount of taxpayer dollars on spot bonuses totaling $1.2 million over two years for a department with 114 employees.  For comparison, the state’s largest agency — the Indiana Department of Correction — has 5,149 employees and […]

Halfway through Medicaid “unwinding,” where does Indiana stand?

By: - November 3, 2023

As Indiana hits the halfway point for the Medicaid unwinding process, the rate of Hoosiers losing benefits seems to have slowed as the state reassesses the coverage of millions of beneficiaries following the expiration of pandemic protections. However, with a total of 231,403 Hoosiers kicked off of the rolls, Indiana could potentially exceed an earlier […]

Indiana Treasurer Elliott heavily invests Indiana funds in Israel

By: - November 1, 2023

Indiana State Treasurer Daniel Elliott, who championed removing personal ideologies from state investment strategies throughout the legislative session, announced on Wednesday a significant purchase of Israel funds to support the U.S. ally.  “Israel is our most important ally in the world.  This investment reflects the confidence that I have in the Israeli people and the […]

Health entities providing gender-affirming care turn to court to quash Attorney General’s request

By: - November 1, 2023

Three health care entities urged a Marion County judge to quash civil investigative demands from Attorney General Todd Rokita Tuesday, part of an ongoing battle over gender-affirming care.  Marion County Judge Gary Miller said he would decide over the next 48 hours how to proceed with the request after a brief hearing Tuesday in which […]