Gassman on the Early Legislative Session

We are on our way again. This will be my eighth year as your state representative. I believe that
we have done an excellent job taking care of our state during this period of time. Our budget has
been balanced every year, we have tackled a number of ongoing problems, some solved, some
need more work and of course new ones arise. Mental health problems with our children are not
new, but are new at the state level. I believe there is a variety of things we need to look at from
funds to help those through their problem, to the basics of why a child might be having mental
problems. Included in this research is how divorce and single parenthood may have caused some
of these problems.
Condition of the State:
The Governor gave her Condition of the State Address on January 14. She began by honoring
the public servants that had passed away last year including Chief Justice Mark Cady and former
Lt. Governor Joann Zimmerman. As it was the first Condition of the State Address of this decade
she took the opportunity to look back over the last ten years and then turn her attention to the
next ten years and beyond. This is a summary of her proposals:
• Increase of $20 million for flood relief
• Increase funding for water quality and conservation by almost 31%
• Cut individual income tax by an average of 10% in 2021
• Begin taking the funding for mental health from the State general fund instead of from
property taxes
• Increase of $2 million to the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program
• Amend the Iowa Constitution to clarify that there is no right to abortion
• Begin a fellowship for new family-practice physicians who want training in OB care and
start tele-mentoring for physicians from OBs
• Increase funding for broad band by $15 million and adjust state match
• Increase funding for K-12 education by $103 million
• Increase the Employer Innovation Fund and Last Dollar Scholarship by $2.8 million each
• Make Early Childcare tax credits available to families making $90,000 a year or less and
put in place a tiered co-pay system to respond to the child-care cliff
• Amend the Iowa Constitution so that it doesn’t prohibit felons, who have fulfilled their
sentence, from voting
• Make changes in the state licensing system such as adopting universal licensing
recognition and creating a Review Commission on Licensure Standards
Other Updates:
By the end of this week we will also have heard the Condition of the Judiciary and the
Condition of the National Guard. Committee meetings are starting back up again. I am on the
Environmental Protection, Economic Growth, Budget Subcommittee on Education, and Local
Government committees and am Vice Chair of the Education committee.
Thank you for this opportunity you have given me to serve you as your state representative.
Please call, e-mail, write, or see me with any questions you may have.
My e-mail is:
My cell phone number is: 515-538-0117