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Messmer Report: Giving legislators a say on state commissions

Giving legislators a say on state commissions

By State Sen. Mark Messmer (R-Jasper)

It is no secret that state government impacts the daily lives of Hoosiers throughout Indiana.

While a lot of decisions are made by the Indiana General Assembly, many are made by the executive branch boards and commissions.

Legislators can currently serve as non-voting members on some of these boards, acting as a liaison between the legislature and board. This gives lawmakers little ability to have input on decisions made by the board.

Under current language of the Indiana Constitution, lawmakers can't serve as voting members of these commissions.

This session, I have authored Senate Joint Resolution 18, which would amend the state constitution to allow members of the state legislature to serve as voting members on these boards and commissions in the executive branch.

Senate Joint Resolution 18 would give these boards and commissions a voting member who can be held accountable directly by Hoosiers through an election.

Amending the Indiana Constitution is a multi-year process. If passed by both chambers of the Indiana General Assembly in 2023, the measure would have to be adopted again by the state legislature in either 2025 or 2026, then would appear on the 2026 election ballot for approval by the voters.

Senate Joint Resolution 18 passed out of the Senate Committee on Judiciary by a vote of 8-2 on Feb. 1.

Updates on this resolution, and other legislation this year, can be found on

As always, feel free to contact my office directly with your questions and concerns by email at or by phone at 800-382-9467.


State Sen. Mark Messmer (R-Jasper) represents Senate District 48, which
includes Crawford, Dubois, Gibson, Perry, Pike and Spencer counties.
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