State Sen. Vaneta Becker (R-Evansville) made the following statement in response to Gov. Eric Holcomb’s 2023 State of the State address:
STATEHOUSE (Jan. 11, 2023) – "I was encouraged by the governor's speech last night and look forward to implementing his plans to address issues facing our state, specifically in regard to increasing education funding and improving public health.
"It was great to hear the governor's proposed funding for Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, which allows children who haven't entered classrooms yet to receive high-quality books each month. It is of the utmost importance for children to have access to books at home, even before they begin elementary school. Research has shown that the majority of a child's brain development occurs between the time of birth and five. I look forward to bringing this idea to the forefront through my own legislation establishing the Imagination Library for Indiana this session.
"I also support the governor's plan to make it easier for parents of school-aged children to obtain curriculum materials for their child, which can cost hundreds of dollars. Obtaining these necessary materials is the first step in helping a child succeed in school, and no parent should be worried they can't afford to provide them each year. We are only one of seven states that still require parents to pay for their children's textbooks.
"The governor's plan addressing mental health, addiction, infant mortality and maternal health is also very important. I have always prioritized the health and wellbeing of Hoosiers, and with our state ranking 43rd for access to mental health providers, it is crucial we continue to work as elected officials to pass bills that combat this statistic."