Appropriations bills for state departments are being introduced at the legislature, which is usually a sign that the session is heading into its last month or so.
A bill outlawing trafficking in fetal body parts, Senate File 359, passed the Iowa Senate last week by a vote of 43-6. The bill moved to the House for possible consideration. This bill would allow the use of tissue procured from morally-licit sources.
Senate File 471, a bill to restrict abortions after…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on March 27, 2017 at 9:11am — No Comments
LAST WEEK AT THE STATE CAPITOL
A bill to restrict abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization, Senate File 471, has passed the Senate by a vote of 32-17. The vote was mainly along party lines with two Democrats and an Independent joining the Republicans in supporting the bill. The bill now goes to the House for possible consideration.
Senate File 471 has an exception to allow…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on March 19, 2017 at 10:01pm — No Comments
Thanks for your quick response to our action alert supporting an increase in Iowa’s minimum wage. Unfortunately an effort to bring up an amendment to increase the minimum wage to $10.75 failed in the House on Thursday by a vote of 57-41.
The House went on to pass House File 295 which would “pre-empt” cities and counties from raising the minimum wage on their own. Four counties – Linn, Wapello, Polk and Johnson – had already passed an increase in the minimum wage and the bill…Continue
The first legislative “funnel” deadline was last Thursday. That means any bill that has not passed out of a committee by now is dead for the session, with the exception of budget and tax bills.
During the next few weeks, the Iowa Senate will be working to pass bills that came out of a Senate committee, and send them to the House so they can go through a House committee before the next deadline date of March 31. The Iowa House will be doing the same. But nothing is dead for certain…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on March 5, 2017 at 9:43pm — No Comments
Our newsletter is extra lengthy this week because of the upcoming first legislative deadline. Bills are required to pass their first committee by Friday to remain eligible, with the exception of bills related to budget or taxes. It will be an extremely busy week at the capitol.
Here’s a list of the bills that have an action alert on our website followed by a short explanation. Please visit our Action Center at…Continue
Almost all other work stopped at the state capitol last week as debate focused on a bill to limit collective bargaining rights for public sector union members (HF 291). The bill passed both chambers on Thursday and was signed by the governor on Friday. In light of the legislature’s debate on the issue, the Iowa Catholic Conference again released its statement on “Labor and the Common…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on February 19, 2017 at 9:17pm — No Comments
Please contact your legislator regarding House File 265, the successor bill to HSB 67. The bill is a piece of “enforcement-only” immigration legislation. It passed the House Public Safety Committee last week and is eligible for debate on the floor. Additional information about the bill is available here.
A subcommittee meeting…Continue
The Iowa Catholic Conference is asking for your help with two new action alerts. Many of you have already sent in a message on one of these issues - if so, thank you!
Added by Tom Chapman on February 6, 2017 at 9:04am — No Comments
REACTION TO IMMIGRATION/REFUGEE ORDERS
On Friday, President Trump issued an order related to refugees. According to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the order will virtually shut down the refugee admissions program for 120 days, reduce the number of refugees to be admitted from a goal of 110,000 to 50,000 people, and indefinitely suspend the resettlement of Syrian refugees. (Click here for a Nov.…Continue
New resources posted on Education Savings Accounts
We are working to encourage state legislators to pass an Education Savings Account program this year. Some new resources have been posted on our website, including a link to a recent webinar and the Iowa bishops’ statement.
You are invited to attend a “National School Choice Week” event this Wednesday, Jan. 25, 10 a.m. at the State…Continue
Bills introduced to “defund” abortion providers; eliminate regulation of guns
The Iowa legislative session began last week with the introduction of some bills of interest to the Iowa Catholic Conference and the Governor’s “Condition of the State” address.
The ICC supports redirecting government health care funds away from abortion providers. Senate File 2 would, in effect, stop all government health care funds from going to abortion providers. We believe that…Continue
The 87th Iowa General Assembly convenes on Monday. Most of the first week is taken up by the usual ceremonies and organizational meetings of committees. During the first day, legislative leaders address the chambers to talk about their plans for the session. Also coming up this week is Governor Branstad’s presumably final “Condition of the State” speech to the legislature and Chief Justice Cady’s “State of the Judiciary” address.
It’s a new situation at the State Capitol because last…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on January 8, 2017 at 7:27pm — No Comments
LEGISLATIVE KICKOFF WEBINARS
One of our top priorities during the upcoming legislative session is to encourage passage of a flexible Education Savings Account (ESA) program in Iowa. In preparation for the session, our partners at Iowa Alliance for Choice in Education are offering 30-minute “Legislative Kickoff” webinars at two convenient times – Tuesday, Jan. 10 at noon and Thursday, Jan. 12 at 6:30 p.m.
The webinars will
present a refresher on the legislative…Continue
Please note: Iowa Right to Life has cancelled the Midwest March for Life on Jan. 14, 2017. The Mass for Life with the four bishops of Iowa has been rescheduled for 5 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 15 at Saints John and Paul Church in Altoona, IA at the conclusion of the first day of the Iowa Institute for Social Action. Bishop Martin Amos of Davenport will be the homilist. (To be clear, no sign-up is necessary for the Mass!)
We hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving. Time to get back to work!
One of our top priorities during the upcoming legislative session is to encourage passage of an Education Savings Account (ESA) program in Iowa. Click here for a very short video about how ESAs work for families.
ESAs will help all parents pay for the learning environment that best suits their child’s needs,…Continue
Most of the election coverage has been focused on the presidential race but we pay attention to the Iowa Statehouse. Tuesday’s elections resulted in the Republicans gaining control of the Iowa Senate. They picked up six seats for a total of 29 Republicans to 19 Democrats and one independent. There will be a special election in Davenport next month. The Republicans in the House gained two seats giving them a 59-41 majority.
This is the first time Republicans have had control of both…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on November 2, 2016 at 11:38am — No Comments
What should we be looking for in leaders?
“Those with political responsibilities must not forget or underestimate the moral dimension of political representation, which consists in the commitment to share fully in the destiny of the people and to seek solutions to social problems. In this perspective, responsible authority also means authority exercised with those virtues that make it possible to put power into…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on October 14, 2016 at 11:59am — No Comments
“As faithful Catholics, we must consider every issue and candidate through the lens of God’s Word.” Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics, 2016
While most political attention is being paid these days to the presidential campaign, every seat in the Iowa House is up for election this fall as well as half of the Senate seats.
The Iowa bishops’ “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” has…Continue
Added by Tom Chapman on September 19, 2016 at 11:47am — No Comments