• Insist to keep government out of our bedrooms and doctor's offices, and fight discrimination

  • Seek to defend and further enhance the individual, constitutional and civil rights of everyone regardless of national origin, race, color, religion, disability, sex, familial status or sexual orientation

  • As a former victim of violent crime, I say we should NEVER seek to have government ban, register or confiscate your family's firearms or infringe on or undermine our successful long-standing protected rights as people


All while emphasizing and prioritizing the rights and needs of "people first"

COVID-19

Business can not return to normal until people's lives return to normal. And we need a thorough, ongoing and comprehensive statewide COVID-19 ANTIBODY STUDY to get ahead of this disaster and stay ahead of it.

Welfare should be reserved and liberally expanded primarily for people, NOT only for corporations and banks. This is especially true in this time of state and national emergency. People need help and the State of Indiana should be matching all federal welfare programs by at least 50% to 100%, giving the poor much needed additional resources/income to survive.

Property Tax Waivers for 6-18 months are going to be key for "homeowners with homestead exemptions" who are impacted by this state emergency. It is not enough to simply delay the tax obligation and waive the fines. The same holds true for small unincorporated businesses and farmers, they need temporary Property Tax Relief to the extent that they have been impacted.

We gain nothing but a larger homeless population if we kick people out of their homes and boot them off of their farms. This is entirely counterproductive and will likely cost the state more while ruining people's lives and futures.

We should rescue “people first”, then let it “trickle down” to the corporations and banks; rather than the other way around. If people are made whole first, the success of companies and banking will surely follow.

Healthcare Coverage Safety Net

The Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) and HIP Plus (aka Federal Medicaid Expansion) should be immediately broadened to cover every Hoosier that is not enrolled (or loses coverage) in a private health insurance plan. There should be zero “means testing” and HIP/HIP Plus should begin serving as the key default SAFETY NET to catch and support every single Hoosier and Hoosier family who finds themselves without private insurance or Medicare upon entering the hospital or their doctor’s office.

Too often the cost of health coverage fails to take into account the cost of losing a dear family member to disease or injury simply because that person delayed because they could not afford to go to the doctor or hospital in the first place. If we can bailout corporate America again and again, we can surely make it so that every Hoosier has access to HIP and HIP Plus when they need it most and when they find themselves without private health insurance.



Teachers, Child Care Providers and Public Servants

We need desperately to give these folks a real raise as I discussed in my interview with the Bloomington Chamber of Commerce (VIDEO HERE).

The best way to do this in my opinion is to eliminate state and local Income Tax on their earnings and wages altogether. It is absolutely ridiculous that a teacher, fireman or police officer (who is paid directly by government) must then turn around and give a significant portion of their paycheck back to the same government.

This unnecessary backward circular scheme is degenerative and less than efficient. I say let them keep 100% of what they earn! I will sponsor a bill in the Indiana State Senate to give Teachers, Child Care Providers and Public Servants a major raise year over year by way of elimination of all state and local Income Tax on earnings that are paid by a government entity or state college, or where the earnings are directly associated with the care and/or education of our children.

In addition to teacher pay, I will seek to establish public expense accounts for individual teachers to use to "expense off" items and activities for their classrooms and to cover out-of-pocket expenses directly related to their classes. We all know that too many teachers are spending lots of their own money on classroom supplies and activities, things that should clearly be the responsibility of the state and school districts to reimburse.

May 2020

WTIU Interview

with Joe Hren

CANDIDATE

TRENT FEUERBACH

Indiana State Senate

Monroe County, District 40

Primary Candidate Forum

GUN OWNERS

VOTE IN THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY

TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS

After graduating from Bloomington High School North and Purdue University, Trent relocated to Houston, Texas and worked globally managing Information Systems, Supply Chains and Corporate Communications for some of the oldest and largest corporate holdings in the world including Solvay S.A., BP Amoco, Abbott Labs, Hon Hai/Foxconn Technology Group and Compaq Computer Corporation. He returned home to Bloomington to be with and to care for his terminally ill father during his father's final years.

Homelessness

Our Bloomington community is known for opening our arms to the homeless and for doing much more than most cities and towns. This is a good and positive thing.

However, this also creates somewhat of a vacuum wherein additional homeless are drawn to our city from outside our immediate area as they seek out those important resources that our community provides.

In this context we must take action statewide, and preferably at a national level, to alleviate this local burden by procuring adequate resources for appropriate infrastructure and housing in all 92 counties in Indiana at the state level; the goal being to assure that every person and family in our state has a comfortable residence in which to live and to call their home such that our own local resources can go farther and do more for those in our area without becoming a magnet for desperate people due to a lack of resources elsewhere in other parts of our state.

Criminal Justice Reform and Hate Crimes

Our entire criminal justice system has been promoting a racial and poverty based outcome for far too long. It is well known that money buys better lawyers and thus better outcomes in our courts while the innocent among the poor and working class are railroaded into a bad plea deal.

More police in poor and minority neighborhoods has unfortunately been the unwelcome catalyst for this horrible systemic discrimination where excessive incarceration rates of minorities and the poor has continued to be a growing blight on our state and on our nation.

Furthermore, the recent malicious false arrest of IU Professor Cara Caddoo locally last summer for merely holding a small sign (VIDEO HERE) was but the latest example of the intimidation and fear tactics being employed against minorities to utterly quash their free speech and deprive peaceful people of numerous constitutional and civil rights. This case in particular highlights an abuse of our criminal justice system that deserves immediate attention by state lawmakers.

I will lead the charge in Indianapolis to expand Indiana Hate Crimes legislation to appropriately target the systemic abuse of minorities and the poor by incorporating the following long-standing Federal Statutes/Codes into Indiana Code/Law to enable state prosecution and state civil torts/lawsuits against those public and elected officials who would seek to abuse our state criminal justice system to deprive minorities and the poor of their rights under color of law:


42 U.S. Code § 1983. Civil action for deprivation of rights
18 U.S. Code § 241. Conspiracy against rights
18 U.S. Code § 242. Deprivation of rights under color of law

Achieving equality is only possible if we have equal justice for all. And it is apparent that we do not currently have equality in our state justice system.

We instead live under a system of injustice, specifically deprivation and favoritism. I will seek to do my part to fix that.

Sustainability and the Environment

Some things are really important. We tax cigarettes because we want people to quit and be healthy. Likewise, Indiana does NOT apply Sales Tax to groceries because feeding our children and our families is maybe the highest priority. I declare that “Sustainable Living” should be a high priority too, and thus those products and services that improve our “Carbon Footprint” should NEVER be taxed. Specifically, we should NOT apply Sales Tax to any product or service that benefits our environment by way of getting our households closer to a “Carbon Neutral” way of living. Like groceries; electric cars, solar and sustainable energy devices should be made available to all Hoosiers completely TAX FREE. And we should not stop there. We should pay some reasonable subsidies to people also, because facilitating and encouraging people to live in a more sustainable way is of the highest importance now.

GUN OWNERS

VOTE IN THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY

TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS

May 2020

Hoosier Times / Herald Times 2020 Primary Election Questionnaire

Indiana Senate District 40

General Questions


Name, age, city or town of residence.

Trent Feuerbach, 51, Bloomington, Indiana


What is your occupation?

After graduating from Bloomington High School North and Purdue University, I relocated to Houston, Texas and worked globally managing Information Systems, Supply Chains and Corporate Communications for some of the oldest and largest corporate holdings in the world including Solvay S.A., BP Amoco, Abbott Labs, Hon Hai/Foxconn Technology Group and Compaq Computer Corporation. I returned home to Bloomington to be with and to care for my terminally ill father during my father's final years.


Why did you decide to run for office?

I looked at the Democratic field back in February and saw two "establishment candidates". They seemed to represent institutional interests but not so much the rank and file Democratic voter. We need a Democrat in the Senate that places "people first" as opposed to giving us meaningless "corp-speak" while defending the corporate status quo from angry voters.

For example, we need to empower the classroom teacher as opposed to the micromanagement of teachers by school administrators. This is the core problem.

If we do not take care of our teachers first, the institutions will continue to suffer and decline. We can already see that teachers are leaving Indiana and relocating to states where working conditions are better and salaries are higher.

This is unacceptable.


What are your top priorities if elected?

Healthcare Safety Net

The Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) should be immediately broadened to cover every Hoosier that is not enrolled in a private health insurance plan. There should be zero “means testing” and HIP should begin serving as the key default SAFETY NET to catch and support every Hoosier who finds themselves without private insurance.

Teachers, Child Care Providers and Public Servants

We need to give these folks a real raise by eliminating state/local income taxes on their underpaid salaries.

Sustainability/Environment

Some things are really important. We tax cigarettes because we want people to quit and be healthy. Likewise, Indiana does NOT apply Sales Tax to groceries because feeding our children and families is maybe the highest priority. I declare that “Sustainable Living” should be a high priority too, and thus those products and services that improve our “Carbon Footprint” should NEVER be taxed.


What qualities/experience do you have that makes you the voters’ best pick for the office compared to other candidates?

In business I was a facilitator reporting to multiple Senior Vice Presidents across numerous competing enterprises, successfully building diverse coalitions for projects and finding compromise between departments and companies. I will do the same in the Indiana State Senate by embracing diversity as opposed to fighting it.

In addition, as a former victim of violent crime myself, I will NEVER seek to have government ban, register or confiscate your family's firearms or infringe on or undermine our successful long-standing protected rights as people.


What action(s) in your political/relevant career experience do you regret and why?

This is the first time that I will actually be on the ballot running for a paid political office. Unlike my two opponents, I have not made a career out of 1) politics, 2) bottom feeding and/or 3) protecting badly behaving institutions from reform.

I do not regret that. It is an asset to my candidacy.

However, like most Hoosiers I am really tired of having to hold my nose every time I go to vote.


How have you used that experience going forward in your life?

Maybe I've gotten really good at holding my breath.

Look, let's be honest. The usual choice between presidential candidates is not so different than choosing whether you are going to eat horse ordure or bull manure.

Few are excited, happy or encouraged after casting ballots for the lessor of two evils.


How can voters learn more about your campaign?

Please go to my campaign website at:

TrentforIndiana.com

Or watch my interview with Mary Morgan at the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XiXKgqwYa3Q

https://www.chamberbloomington.org/state-legislative-candidates-2020.html


Education

Candidates talk about supporting and respecting public education. What steps do you plan to take to illustrate your support for public education?

You can not support public education without first supporting an increase in teacher pay and also untying the hands of our teachers.

The best way to do this in my opinion is to eliminate state and local Income Tax on their earnings and wages altogether. It is absolutely ridiculous that an underpaid teacher, fireman or police officer (who is paid directly by government) must then turn around and give a significant portion of their minuscule paycheck back to the same government that didn't pay them enough to begin with.


Regulation of private and charter schools is a concern for some voters. What are we currently doing that is working, and what do we need to improve upon?

Charter Schools need to be audited for sure. But we can not let this issue detract, confound and side step our immediate critical focus on teachers, increasing teacher pay and properly placing teachers in charge of procurement and management for/of our children's classrooms.

My top priority is increasing teacher pay and the creation of public expense accounts for every teacher so that they themselves can very simply manage and fund the required supplies and activities for their classrooms at taxpayer expense without being micromanaged or knit-picked by public school administrators.

We all know that too many teachers are spending lots of their own money on classroom supplies and activities, things that should clearly be the responsibility of the state and school districts to reimburse.


Due to the pandemic, the virtual learning capabilities of school corporations have been thrust in the spotlight. What have we learned about implementing e-learning strategies and what role can the state play to help schools and families better adapt to this particular method of instruction?

Simply put, we need to get our children back into the classroom as soon as reasonably possible. I'm not trying to rush that, we have to do it safely and proceed with caution. But technology for the sake of technology is not the goal here, and the focus needs to be on safely opening schools in the context of proper/thorough virus testing and with social distancing, rather than how to move our classrooms into the cloud where everyone is going online in their pajamas. Technology can certainly help bridge the gap in the short-term, but it is not the answer to this problem. And virtual learning should NOT be our main focus in this battle. The in-person classroom experience is exceedingly important to our children.


Health Care

What shortcomings do you think the pandemic has exposed about the state’s current health care system?

Basically the pandemic demonstrated that we have no real Healthcare Safety Net. People were left helpless. And many nursing homes were overrun with infection.


How do you plan to address those shortcomings in the future?

The Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) should be immediately broadened to cover every Hoosier that is not enrolled in a private health insurance plan. There should be zero “means testing” and HIP should begin serving as the key default SAFETY NET to catch and support every Hoosier who finds themselves without private insurance upon entering the hospital or their doctor’s office.

Too often the cost of health coverage fails to take into account the cost of losing a dear family member to disease or injury simply because that person delayed because they could not afford to go to the doctor or hospital in the first place. If we can bailout corporate America again and again, we can surely make it so that every Hoosier has access to HIP when they need it most and when they find themselves without private health insurance.


There are philosophically different approaches on making health care more affordable. How do you plan to make health care more affordable for Hoosiers?

Healthcare is not affordable, but it must be made available to those in need regardless. And our government needs to define the offering and stand firmly behind it, rather than passing the buck and the profits to the health insurance industry who are corrupting and manipulating our doctors and politicians. I strongly believe that expanding HIP (aka Medicaid Expansion) to cover everyone lacking private health insurance is the best answer in the short-term, and maybe over the long-term as well. When prisoners are booked into the Monroe County Jail, they are immediately enrolled in HIP if they qualify. The same level of care and attention should be afforded to all law abiding individuals, families and children when they show up at their doctor's office or hospital without private insurance. Everyone should qualify by default, no questions or means tests.


Climate Change

Do you believe the state should take action to mitigate climate change? Explain your answer.

YES, of course! But we need to stop propping up fossil fuels and big oil with bad state revenue policy that taxes every aspect of sustainable living. This is horrible tax policy, unless of course you are an oil company.


There are different proposals on how to tackle climate change. Should the state consider implementing climate change policies in the future what would you like to see prioritized?

State policies have become a contradiction meant only to confound and confuse while serving the interests of big oil and self-serving politicians.

Many are rightfully angry because our Mayor wants to create a global environmental tax and apply it to the entire county (taxation without representation outside his jurisdiction) in an effort to create a giant slush fund. Some speculate this money will go toward miscellaneous pet projects aka reimbursing local minority business owners for his attempted theft through eminent domain abuses, enforcement of "black codes" (aka "rules of behavior" for minorities at our Farmers Market) and state/federal legal battles with local minority activists and also market vendors that the mayor has managed so successfully to both offend and deprive of their basic human rights while denying public comment.


What changes, if any, do you think the legislature should make to the existing local income tax structure in Indiana to provide communities like Bloomington more flexibility to fund priorities like mitigating climate change?

I will seek to implement environmental policy statewide as opposed to encouraging John Hamilton to pretend that he is solving Global Warming all by himself.

I take offense that our local politicians are trying to take advantage, using every crisis as an opportunity to raise taxes to cover the costs of their own discrimination and abuses of power.

Everyone in Monroe County should be thanking/praising Professor Cara Caddoo for her courage in the face of this monster. She was arrested, booked into the Monroe County Jail and never charged with a crime; all for quietly holding a small sign.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lwr1R21Xrx4


I lived in the deep south under the remnants of "black codes" for two decades. I know well when I see systemic racism and I will fight tirelessly to defend Cara's rights from this racist bureaucratic beast. Jim Crow is not welcome in my hometown!


Economy

What are your plans to help businesses and restore the economy to pre-pandemic or better levels?

Business can not return to normal until people's lives return to normal. And we need a thorough, ongoing and comprehensive statewide COVID-19 ANTIBODY STUDY to get ahead of this disaster and stay ahead of it.

Welfare should be reserved and liberally expanded primarily for people, NOT only for corporations and banks. This is especially true in this time of state and national emergency. People need help and the State of Indiana should be matching all federal welfare programs by at least 50% to 100%, giving the poor much needed additional resources/income to survive.

We should rescue “people first”, then let it “trickle down” to the corporations and banks; rather than the other way around. If people are made whole first, the success of companies and banking will surely follow.


What has the pandemic taught us about our ability to help Indiana’s workforce during a crisis and what adjustments, if any, should be made in the future?

It shows that this current Republican administration was entirely unprepared and that Holcomb lacked leadership. COVID-19 testing in Indiana per capita has fallen way behind the national average even though Roche and Eli Lilly are based here in the Hoosier state. It's shameful. These pseudo Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) have benefitted us NOT! We desperately need a thorough, ongoing and comprehensive statewide COVID-19 ANTIBODY STUDY.


What sectors of the economy should Indiana invest in to strengthen the economy?

Property Tax Waivers for 6-18 months are going to be key for "homeowners with homestead exemptions" who are impacted by this state emergency. It is not enough to simply delay the tax obligation and waive the fines. The same holds true for small unincorporated businesses and farmers, they need temporary Property Tax Relief to the extent that they have been impacted.

We gain nothing but a larger homeless population if we kick people out of their homes and boot them off of their farms. This is entirely counterproductive and will likely cost the state more while ruining people's lives and futures.


Why those areas above and what would that investment look like (grants, tax breaks, repurposing existing tax dollars etc.)?

Why would you not want to invest in people and families, and stabilize family owned small businesses? These are our neighbors. This money is more likely to stay in Indiana and these folks are the foundation of our communities and our local economy. Of course that is what we must do.


Budget

How would the pandemic affect your approach to making decisions regarding the state’s budget next year?

The state of Indiana has consistently managed a surplus of revenue in past years. We are not and have not been in a financial crisis by any measure.

And this is not the time to raise taxes on hurting families and businesses. They need reasonable tax waivers just to survive.

In these trying times we must minimize the impact to state workers and projects by taking on a small to moderate amount of debt.

Further, our state budget already relies heavily on federal funding. We should fully expect that Washington will increase grants and subsidies for the operation of state and local government.

In addition the Federal Reserve banking system has now expanded their purchase of state and municipal bonds. So credit should be available as needed to maintain an even keel and minimize the impact to public employees and state projects.


From infrastructure to teacher pay, the state budget touches multiple areas of Hoosier life. What areas do you believe are not being adequately funded and why?

Homelessness - Every person and family in our state should have a comfortable residence in which to live and to call their home such that our own local resources can go farther and do more for those in our area without becoming a magnet for desperate people due to a lack of resources elsewhere in other parts of our state.

Healthcare Safety Net - The Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) should be immediately broadened to cover every Hoosier that is not enrolled in a private health insurance plan. There should be zero “means testing” and HIP should begin serving as the key default SAFETY NET to catch and support every Hoosier who finds themselves without private insurance.

Teachers, Child Care Providers and Public Servants - We need to give these folks a real raise by eliminating state/local income taxes on their underpaid salaries.


How would you change that?

I will make it my priority to implement positive and effective change, and good public policy statewide with regards to addressing 1) Homelessness, 2) the increased pay of Teachers, Child Care Providers and Public Servants, 3) making sure every Hoosier has access to a Healthcare Coverage Safety Net when they need it, 4) with support for Sustainability and the Environment, and addressing 5) Criminal Justice Reform and Hate Crimes. For the full details of my comprehensive action plan please visit TrentforIndiana.com



Welcome

Trent Feuerbach
Monroe County, Indiana