Greetings from Under the Golden Dome
The weeks feel like they have been going fast. We are already in week five and busy with committee work. We are coming up on our first funnel week. This means all bills need to be through committee in one chamber or the other in order to be considered for the rest of the legislative session. The only exceptions to the funnel are oversight, appropriations and ways and means bills. The funnel is a deadline to help us focus on our priorities and move bills through the process so we can get Iowan’s work done on time.
One of the bills that will be coming to the floor will address traffic cameras. There are two bills concerning this issue, one regulates the cameras, allowing them to exist in areas proven to have safety issues and limits the revenue to streets and public safety. The other bill simply bans them.
Legislation allowing for the sale and use of consumer fireworks passed on a bipartisan vote of 11-3 Wednesday in the Senate State Government committee.
This is not a new topic around the Statehouse. Last year, a similar version of the fireworks bill was adopted by the State Government committee on a bipartisan vote, but never came to the Senate floor for full debate.
Senate Study Bill 1051, if it becomes law, would give county boards of supervisors or city councils the ability to prohibit the use of consumer fireworks through a simple ordinance or resolution. The bill also has language which would allow the sale of first and second class consumer fireworks in both permanent and temporary structures. Currently in the state, Iowans are permitted to possess as many consumer fireworks as they want, they just can’t use them. Imagine having a grill but you can’t grill a steak.
Under SSB 1051, retailers in permanent structures would be permitted to sell consumer fireworks from June 1 through July 8 and between December 10 and January 3annually. Those selling fireworks in temporary structures would be permitted to sell fromJune 13 – July 8 each year. The bill also creates procedures and penalties for violators. Sales would be prohibited to consumers under the age of 18.
With the legalization of this consumer fireworks bill, Iowans would have the freedom to use them from June 1 to July 8 and between December 10 and January 3 from the hours 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. with additional hours over the July 4 and New Year’s Eve holidays. Fireworks must be used on personal property or with a landowner’s permission. Fireworks would be prohibited for use in state parks and preserves unless authorized by a permit issued by the Department of Natural Resources.
Senate Considers Collective Bargaining Reform
This week the senate introduced a bill that would reform collective bargaining in Iowa. This bill will change the way Iowa government does business. It empowers local school boards and elected officials to pay great teachers and employees more, while also removing the occasional bad employee. It gets the government out of the business of using taxpayer money to collect union dues and finally gives taxpayers a seat at the bargaining table.
This part of Iowa law has not been addressed for more than 40 years. I know this is another are of contention and we are hearing from many constituents. Our goal is to offer more local control.
See you out and about the district.
I currently serve as the chair on the Transportation Committee, and serve on the Agriculture, International Relations, and Natural Resources Committees. Please feel free to contact me by phone at (319) 442-5337 or by email at email@example.com