Never Again: Lawmakers React to historic moment MAXSTRONG bill signed

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INDIANAPOLIS (WNDU) - What started as Senate Bill 2 became known as MAXSTRONG School Bus Safety Act, and on Wednesday, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signed it into law.

“Thank you for devoting so much attention to a topic that not only deserves it, it demands it,” Holcomb said as he grabbed the pens before him and signed the legislation.

“This wasn't about politics, it was about policy,” said bill author, Indiana Sen. Randy Head of Logansport. “This wasn't ‘R’ versus ‘D.’ This was about everybody's children.”

“We saw some new data that shows we still have 2,500 stop arm violations every day. That's down from 3,000-plus, but that's still unacceptable,” said Indiana Rep. Ethan Manning, the bill’s cosponsor. “By increasing penalties I think we've sent a message that it's unacceptable to pass a school bus that's stopped with its stop arm out.”

“All of the processes that we've gone through to get to this day? This is an exciting day to finally see the governor sign it,” said Indiana Rep. Jim Pressel of Rolling Prairie.

“We got a bill that will save children's lives,” said Rep. B. Pat Bauer of South Bend. “In this case, it was a tragedy of three kids being killed. It's just terrible. We hope it'll never happen again.”

The MAXSTRONG Act takes effect July 1, 2019.

For other Never Again stories from Tricia Sloma or to see the details in the law, see these previous stories: