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Government Relations Legislative Update - Week 9

Capitol Update 

The second funnel deadline is next Friday.  We expect to see mostly Committee work next week as bills that have not made it through the Committee in the other Chamber will be considered dead for the session, with exceptions.  Even though a bill itself may be considered dead, ideas are not dead and can come back in the form of amendments or new Appropriations, Ways and Means or Leadership bills. 

The issue of reducing income taxes remains front and center as a priority on the “to do” list before the session concludes.  This week both the House and Senate worked on bills that were announced at a Joint House/Senate Press Conference a few weeks ago.  HSB 721 passed a House Ways and Means subcommittee on Wednesday and SJR 2003 (formerly SSB 3142) passed through the Senate Ways and Means subcommittee on Tuesday and then the full Senate Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday. SJR 2003 is now ready for debate on the Senate Floor. 

These bills propose an amendment to the Iowa Constitution.  The first provision of the bill would require a two-thirds vote by each Chamber of the General Assembly in order to pass legislation that would increase certain taxes or related considerations.  This would include individual income taxes, corporate income taxes, or the rate of any other type of tax that is based upon income or legal and special reserves.  This requirement would not apply to taxes imposed by local governments.  The proposed amendment specifies that a lawsuit challenging the proper enactment of a bill must be filed no later than one year following enactment.  The second provision would prohibit implementation of a graduated income tax rate for individuals.  Individual income taxes would only be imposed as a single rate (flat tax applies to everyone). 

It’s not an easy task to amend the Iowa Constitution.  Article X, which governs amendments to the Constitution, requires that the exact same language pass in both the House and Senate in two successive General Assemblies.  That means that if these bills pass this session, they must also pass again in the 91st General Assembly.  After that happens, and certain publication requirements are met, the vote is put to the electorate at the next November election.  In order to amend the Constitution, the proposal must pass by a majority of voters. 

In other tax-related news, the Iowa Poll released on Thursday, found sixty-two percent of Iowans favor the gradual elimination of individual income taxes. Thirty percent oppose the proposal.  Conducted by Sezler & Co., the poll also tested other legislative and political matters. 

  • Fifty-six percent of Iowans have a favorable opinion toward Area Education Agencies.  Twenty percent hold unfavorable opinions. 
  • Fifty-five percent of Iowans favor legislation that would require parental approval for minors to have a social media account.  Forty-two percent oppose.  
  • Seventy-four percent of Iowans oppose efforts to “change Iowa law to allow convicted felons to appear on the ballot for president,” while twenty-five percent are in favor. 
  • Fifty-six percent of Iowans oppose prohibitions against ballot drop boxes for Iowa voters returning absentee ballots.  Forty-one percent support. 
  • Sixty-one percent of Iowans support a proposal that would require mail-in ballots to be received by county auditors by the close of business on Election Day to count, as opposed to the current requirement that they be received by the time the polls close.  Thirty-five percent oppose.  
  • Fifty-one percent of Iowans oppose efforts to “restrict challenges to the names of presidential candidates on election ballots, like those Donald Trump has faced in other states.”  Thirty-six percent favor such restrictions. 
  • Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump leads incumbent Democratic President Joe Biden by 15 points (48% - 33%). 

In the Know  

For those of you who are frustrated with the Des Moines parking meter situation, HF 2601 is for you.  The bill requires that a parking meter must allow parking to all users for the duration of time for which the parking space was purchased.  In other words, you could park in a spot that someone else had paid for if there was time left on the meter.  After significant floor debate, the proposal passed the House on Wednesday via a 52-42 vote.  Opposing lawmakers believe these decisions should be left to local elected officials.  The future of the bill is uncertain at this time, but it’s likely that its time will run out next week.  

Legislative Forums  

While many lawmakers hold forums in their districts year-round, it’s especially important for them to hear from constituents when they’re making decisions during the legislative session.  The events listed below are opportunities to get involved. You can also find these events on BrownWinick’s Iowa Political Events page.   






8:00 AM – 9:00 AM 

Glenwood Legislative Forum 

Glenwood City Hall (5 North Vine Street, Glenwood, IA 51534) 


8:30 AM – 10:00 AM 

Emmetsburg Legislative Forum 

Emmetsburg Chamber of Commerce (1121 Broadway Street, Emmetsburg, IA 50536) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Wayne County Legislative Forum 

Chariton Valley Planning & Development Office (308 North 12th Street, Centerville, IA 52544) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Denison Legislative Coffee 

Chamber & Development Council of Crawford County (109 North Main St., Denison, IA 51442) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Storm Lake Legislative Forum 

King's Pointe Resort (1520 East Lakeshore Drive, Storm Lake, IA 50588) 


11:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

Iowa City Legislative Check-In 

Sidekick Coffee & Books (1302 1/2 Melrose Avenue, Iowa City, IA 52246) 


5:00 PM – 6:00 PM 

Jefferson Meet Your Legislator 

Thomas Jefferson Gardens of Greene County (201 East Lincoln Way, Jefferson, IA 50129) 


9:30 AM – 11:00 AM 

Marion Coffee & Conversation  

Uptown Coffee Company (760 11th Street, Suite A, Marion, IA 52302) 


8:00 PM – 9:00 PM 

Des Moines Office Hours with Rep. Baeth 

Lua Brewing (1525 High Street, Des Moines, IA 50309) 


4:00 PM – 5:00 PM 

Peosta Legislative Forum 

Trackside Bar and Grill (709 Peosta Street, Peosta, IA 52068) 


9:00 AM – 10:30 AM 

Ankeny Legislative Office Hours 

Main Street Cafe (2510 SW White Birch Drive, Ankeny, IA 50023) 


8:00 AM – 9:00 AM 

Creston Legislative Coffee 

Creston City Hall - Restored Depot (116 W. Adams Street, Creston, IA 50801) 


9:00 AM – 10:00 AM 

Arlington Town Meeting 

Arlington Community Center (853 Main Street, Arlington, IA 50606) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Elk Horn Legislative Forum 

The Kringle Man Pastries (4234 Main Street, Elk Horn 51531) 


10:00 AM – 11:30 AM 

Hiawatha Legislative Forum 

Hiawatha Public Library (150 West Willman Street, Hiawatha, IA 52233) and virtual via Facebook live 


11:30 AM – 12:30 PM 

Monona Legislative Forum 

Monona Community Center (407 South Egbert Street, Monona, IA 52159) 


Key Dates — 2024 Iowa Legislative Session 





1/8: First day of session 

1/19: Final day for Senator and Representative bill requests 

2/16: First legislative funnel 

3/15: Second legislative funnel 

4/16: 100th calendar day of session (per diem expenses end) 

Scene on the Hill

March 4, 2024: Attorney General Bird addresses attendees for the 2024 Homeschool Iowa Capitol Day.   

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