Indiana weighs tighter ethics law after nursing home construction controversy

The House Ethics Committee in Indiana has voted for a revised ethics code in the wake of allegations that a former state House Speaker lobbied lawmakers to kill a ban on nursing home construction that would have cost his family business millions.

Eric Turner resigned as House Speaker pro tem after the Associated Press reported that he was a 50% owner of Mainstreet Capital Partners, which owns nearly 76.5% of Mainstreet Property Group. The company built nursing homes, and the state was considering a five-year moratorium on the construction of new nursing homes.

The House Ethics Committee voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a revised ethics code, but the full House will have to vote to approve the rules.

The committee previously found Turner did not violate the rules at the time. He announced his resignation in September after serving in the House for 24 years. Mainstreet and an affiliated company, HealthLease Properties REIT, sold its developments to Health Care REIT for $2.3 billion in August.