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Lawmakers consider December meeting to help governor end public health emergency

House Speaker Todd Huston (R-Fishers) said there's general agreement about addressing what Gov. Eric Holcomb said he needs to end the public health emergency. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)

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Indiana lawmakers may come back into session ahead of schedule to help Gov. Eric Holcomb end the state’s public health emergency.

Holcomb said he needs three changes to state law in order to end the public health emergency, but not lose key benefits for Hoosiers: measures to keep enhanced federal benefits for food assistance and matching funds for Medicaid and allow the state to more efficiently get 5- to 11-year-olds vaccinated.

House Speaker Todd Huston (R-Fishers) said there’s general agreement about making those changes.

“We’re having conversations about those things and whether they would be those three or maybe even potentially a little more,” Huston said.

READ MORE: How Is Indiana Distributing COVID-19 Vaccines? Here's What You Need To Know

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And Huston said the legislature might come in for a day in December to make it happen, so that the governor can end the public emergency as soon as possible.

“I think it’s more symbolic than a piece of paper," Huston said. "I think a lot of us feel like we need to move forward.”

The legislature doesn’t normally begin its work until January.

Contact reporter Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.
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Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.