The Iowa House of Representatives began its session on Monday, January 10 with its typical formalities. A joint House-Senate convention was convened to hear Gov. Kim Reynolds’ speech on the condition of the state Tuesday night. On Wednesday, Chief Justice Susan Larson Christensen presented the state of the judiciary in 2022. Maj. Gen. Benjamin J. Corell reported on the Iowa National Guard Thursday morning.

I agree with the Governor’s assessment that the state of Iowa is strong. The people of Iowa have shown resilience in the face of the challenges of COVID-19 as we continue to adapt in response to the disruption of the pandemic. The Governor’s leadership and the conservative budget practices of House Republicans have contributed to our strong fiscal position. The Governor outlined priorities for legislative action, including income tax reform to establish a four percent income tax rate for all Iowa taxpayers, efforts to address our labor shortage and emphasis on education with increased funding, transparency and choice. The House will consider all of his proposals and bring ours to the table to resolve the issues.

Chief Justice Christensen remarked that he had found peace in the storm of COVID-19. The judiciary has implemented several amenities to continue providing justice to the people of Iowa, many of which will continue, as they have improved the overall quality of services. Using federal CARES funds has helped update court settings in all 99 counties with technology to maintain due process and meet remote access needs. These investments will have long-term benefits in our county courthouses. The courts benefited from increased funding from the legislature, maintaining adequate staff in each county and fully implemented a distributive work scheme to ensure adequate support in each district. The judiciary continues to thoroughly review court rules and juvenile justice will continue to be a focus in the coming year.
The Iowa National Guard is commanded by Major General Corell, delivering his annual address. In 2021 alone, more than 2,000 troops have been deployed to various locations around the world. As for the future, Major Corell noted that they are preparing troops for Operation Atlantic Resolve, a mission set to take effect later this fall in Poland to assist NATO allies and prevent conflict. He closed the speech by explaining how without the people and their dedication, the Iowa National Guard would not exist.
Our State Capitol is a remarkable building well worth the time and effort to visit. It is amazing to see the activity while the legislature is in session. I had Decorah School Board Chairman Ron Fadness visit while he was in Des Moines for meetings. I welcome the opportunity to meet constituents.
Please let me know of your planned visit to help schedule the meeting time. I can be reached by email at [email protected]