Under the Golden Dome: Shortfalls and Cuts 2/23/2018

Feb 23, 2018

During Gov. Kim Reynolds' weekly press conference, she talks about the shooting in a Florida high school that killed 17 people. She reintroduces a Department of Homeland Security public campaign "If You Something, Say Something" as a result of the murders in Florida.

Because the crime was committed with a gun, she is asked questions about what firearm control or expansion she supports in the Iowa legislature.  She says she doesn't want to comment right now on potential bills until they have passed through the representatives' and senators' process.  Gov. Reynolds also says she prefers a holistic approach to addressing gun violence issues, by considering a number of factors including the breakdown of families and video game and television violence.

A House of Representatives de-appropriations budget bill is given a public hearing, where advocates for higher education, the judicial branch, and Department of Corrections are among the voices concerned about proposed cuts.  This is a bill that has different cuts than a Senate bill, and both chambers appear to be at odds as to how much to cut from programs.

On the House floor, a bill passes funding public education transportation.  Rural school districts have higher per-pupil transportation expenses because consolidations require students in sparsely-populated areas to travel farther.  The bill was passed last year in the Senate, but the House bill changes it to include funding for one year instead of three.

Sen. Randy Feenstra unveils a new tax code for Iowa he says could cut $1 billion by 2020.  It was first made available Wednesday morning, and passed out of subcommittee and committee Thursday.  Most legislators and lobbyists haven't had time to go through the bill, which is now eligible to come before the Senate for debate.

House Speaker Linda Upmeyer says her chamber is drafting their own version of a tax code change based on the governor's, but doesn’t rule out using parts of the senate's bill.