Iowa House of Representatives
Address: State Capitol, Des Moines, IA 50319
Phone: (515) 281-7330
follow on Twitter @iahouserepubs
RECAP OF WEEK 6
In the past week I visited with members of ABATE motorcycle enthusiast group, board president of Innovative Ag Co-op Randy Blake, and the superintendent of Monticello Schools Chris Anderson.
Last weekend I attended a forum with the Jones County Farm Bureau in Olin at Selma Café. On Saturday, Feb 19, I will be attending a forum in Oxford Junction at Shackey’s from 9am- 10am. On Saturday I will also be attending a forum in Monticello at Whiskey River Pub & Grub at 10:30am. These events are open to the public. Please come with any comments, questions or concerns you may have about any issues affecting your community and the state.
As always, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (515) 281-7330. Also, if you are ever in Des Moines make sure you stop by the Capitol to visit.
Sincerely, Lee Hein
Tax Relief Update
Tax Relief for all Iowans passes the House
HF 194 which provides a 20% across the board income tax cut for all Iowans passed the House with bipartisan support. The bill helps all Iowans and specifically helps small businesses put Iowans back to work. The bill puts money into the hands of small business owners throughout the state. Small business is where the real job creation takes in our economy. This will help them invest and grow their business.
This is a jobs bill
Iowa has over 1.5 million taxpayers; many of these are organized as small businesses. The biggest job growth comes 1to 5 employees at a time. This bill helps small entrepreneurs in every community in Iowa. With Iowa’s unemployment rate is still high at 6.3%, now is the time to stimulate Iowa’s economy and help accelerate our recovery.
We put the taxpayers of Iowa first
When you hear people in government talk about priorities, the taxpayer is rarely mentioned. The want list from government is endless, which usually leads to more spending. This bill shows Iowans that we heard the message of less spending and lower taxes and we trust Iowans to spend their own money how they best see fit.
Iowa Law Enforcement Academy- Training to keep Iowans Safe
Iowans are proud to live in such a great state. One reason Iowa is so great is due to our low crime rate, even in larger cities. Police officers all over Iowa work hard every day to ensure our safety. But where do these men and women in uniform get their training? The Iowa Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA) is responsible for providing some of Iowa’s finest with the best education and training to help them serve Iowans.
Founded in 1967, the ILEA was designed to upgrade Iowa law enforcement to a professional quality. The ILEA’s intent is to; “maximize training opportunities for law enforcement officers, to coordinate training and to set standards for the law enforcement service, all of which are imperative to upgrading law enforcement to professional status.” Over the years the ILEA has worked hard to meet and surpass these goals.
The Iowa National Guard at Camp Dodge in Johnston was the original home to the ILEA. The ILEA and the National Guard have worked side by side, sharing firearm ranges and tactical facilities. Throughout the state there are five registered training facilities (Cedar Rapids Police Department, Des Moines Police Department, Department of Public Safety, Hawkeye Community Technical College and Western Iowa Technical Community College). Additionally, the ILEA has partnered with Des Moines Area Community College to assist with officers drivers training.
The ILEA provides those who want to be police officers with the training they will need to be successful in their department. In 2010, 197 officers were certified after attending the Academy. In addition to new officers, the ILEA offers training for jailers, dispatchers, bike patrol and many more areas. The training is offered at different times throughout the year to accommodate a variety of schedules.
Having a well-trained police force is essential for our safety in Iowa. The ILEA and its staff work hard every day to ensure our police officers, dispatchers and jailers are well trained to protect Iowans.
Eminent Domain- Property Rights vs. Public Use
As Iowa continues to grow, our state will face many challenges. Currently, the house judiciary committee is working to address one of the main challenges facing both rural and urban Iowans, the issue of eminent domain.
This week a subcommittee meeting was held to hear from people on both sides of the issue. The goal of the meeting was to learn more about the specific situations currently facing Iowans and how best to draft eminent domain language that will protect property owners but not stop growth around the state.
Eminent domain is the right of the state to take private land, with just compensation, for public use. While eminent domain laws are not new, they made headline news after the United States Supreme Court issued its ruling in the case of Kelo v. City of New London, 545 U.S. 469 (2005). The Supreme Court determined that eminent domain over private land is justified by the community benefit of economic growth. Public use, as the court defined it, could mean projects that create jobs, increase revenue or revitalize downtrodden areas. The ruling gave states the final decision to either expand or contract eminent domain laws.
Many states took action after Kelo to protect property owners, including Iowa. In 2006, the legislature reformed part of Iowa’s eminent domain laws. Unfortunately, problems still persist and that is why the house judiciary committee is again addressing the controversial issue.
Monday’s subcommittee addressed issues Iowans are facing in Clarke County regarding a proposed reservoir. Land owners, engineers and community leaders presented their case. Some who own land in the proposed reservoir were concerned other options are being overlooked and that their land did not need to be taken, especially if the reservoir would serve multiple recreational purposes. Engineers and some community leaders believe that the proposal is the best option for development and water needs in Clarke County.
The legislation proposed during the subcommittee will change as the representatives learn more about the needs of each side. The goal of the legislation is to protect property owners and stop needless taking of land, while still allowing Iowa to grow. Another subcommittee will be scheduled and the public is invited to attend.