Serving You!

It is a privilege to serve the people of North Iowa in the State Senate. I enjoyed meeting with constituents at several legislative listening posts across District 27 this year. I appreciated hearing your concerns, questions and ideas for moving our communities forward. Your input was invaluable as we debated and passed several significant pieces of legislation. Among the accomplishments of the 2014 Legislative session were:

Securing Jobs and Job Training

The Senate approved an initiative (HF 2460) that is designed to strengthen Iowa’s middle class and generate economic activity in communities across the state. The bill funds small business development centers; expands cultural and historical projects; and boosts support for apprenticeships and job retraining programs at our community colleges.

 Sensibly Balancing the Budget

The Senate passed a fiscally responsible budget that is balanced, does not raise taxes, and leaves our rainy day and reserve accounts full. Our top priority is growing the middle class. This includes making smart investments in the economy, education, and health care.

Fighting for Education Standards and Accessibility

The Senate voted for an increase in local school funding for the 2015- 2016 school year (SF 2079 and SF 2077). This money would have provided additional support for education basics: up-to-date textbooks, heating/ utility bills, teacher salaries, and fuel for buses. We also approved additional state dollars to prevent any related property tax increase (SF 2078).

 The Senate passed SF 2351, a bill that takes additional steps toward universal access to preschool for all Iowa 4-year-olds.

The 2014-15 Education Budget includes funding that allows us to freeze tuition at our Regents universities for the second straight year, helping Iowa

students and their families afford a higher education.

Protecting Those Who Protected Us

SF 303 exempts military retirement pay from Iowa individual income tax starting this year. Additionally, we voted to expand the Disabled Veterans Homestead Tax Credit (SF 2352) to cover any veteran with a permanent and total disability due to service-related injuries, regardless of income level.