{do_not_display_author_on_post=false, author={id=65428522284}}
{do_not_display_author_on_post=false, author={id=65428522309}}

Government Relations Legislative Update - Week Thirteen

The Senate was busy this week confirming Governor’s Appointees.  Confirmations require a two-thirds vote of all Senators.  This means that 34 of the 50 must vote to confirm.  With 34 Republicans in the Chamber, confirmations were less contentious than they have been in the past. Senators vote to confirm either En Bloc or on an Individual basis. Some of the major individually confirmed positions include the following conferees: 

  • Kelly Garcia, Director of Department of Health and Human Services 
  • Kayla Lyons, Director of DNR 
  • James Johnson, Superintendent of Banking 
  • Beth Skinner, Director of Department of Corrections 
  • McKenzie Snow, Director of Department of Education 
  • Renee Schulte, Chair of Parole Board 

The Senate unanimously confirmed 133 appointees on the En Bloc calendar Monday including: 

  • Eric Baker, Director of Office for State-Federal Relations 
  • John Benson, Director of the Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management 
  • Amy Burkhart, Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission 
  • Mark Campbell, Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission 
  • Tina Eick, Administrator of the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission 

The Governor signed two bills into law this week. SF 2096 repeals the gender-balance requirements for all appointed boards and commissions within the state and is effective July 1, 2024.  SF 2095 which creates new chapter 675, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, went into effect on the date the bill was signed, April 2, 2024. 

The Governor’s priority to extend postpartum Medicaid coverage passed this week. SF 2251 extends coverage from 60 days to 12 months for new mothers and infants.  The bill also restricts coverage to families that are at or below 215% of the federal poverty level.  The current law allowed for coverage at 375% of the federal poverty level. The bill directs the department of health and human services to seek a Medicaid State Plan Amendment from the Centers for Medical and Medicaid Services and is effective on January 1, 2025. 

Activity is happening on Budgets.  All of the budget bills, except health and human services have been filed in the Senate.  The House has filed the DOT budget bill.  Next week is expected to be focused almost entirely on passing budget bills.  A helpful document for understanding budget bills is the NOBA.  This is shorthand for the Legislative Fiscal Agencies, Notes on Bills and Amendments.  For example, SF 2421 is the Ag/DNR budget.  The NOBA which is updated to reflect the latest activity can be found next to the bill on the legislative website.  To see the NOBA for SF 2421, click here.  A NOBA will describe the funding summary for expenditures from various state funds, any major increase or decrease or transfers from existing programs, any funding for new programs and any policy that may have been included in the bill.   

In the Know  

Governor Reynolds proclaimed April 3rd as “University of Iowa Women’s Wrestling Day” after meeting with team members to kick off Iowa Caucus Day.  The women’s wrestling team won the team title at the National Collegiate Women’s Wrestling Championship last month in their inaugural season.  Six individual national champions were crowned as they beat out North Central by six team points (204 - 198).  The House and Senate also honored the wrestling team with separate Resolutions, HR 114 and SR 107.   

The University of Iowa has another team on the precipice of a national title as the Iowa women’s basketball team competes this weekend in the Final Four. Iowa plays the University of Connecticut tonight (Friday), and should they win, they will play for the national championship on Sunday. 

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 

Cedar Falls Community Conversation 

Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa (3117 Greenhill Circle, Cedar Falls, IA  50613) 


9:30 AM – 10:30 AM 

Ida Grove Coffee & Issues 

The Farmacy Soda Fountain & Coffee House (506 2nd Street, Ida Grove, IA 51445) 


9:30 AM – 11:00 AM 

Dubuque Cracker Barrel Legislative Forum 

Diamond Jo Casino (301 Bell Street, Dubuque, IA 52001) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Grinnell Legislative Coffee 

Drake Community Library (930 Park Street, Grinnell, IA 50112) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Onawa Legislative Forum 

Onawa Public Library (707 Iowa Avenue, Onawa, IA 51040) 


8:00 PM – 9:00 PM 

Des Moines Office Hours with Rep. Baeth 

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


9:00 AM – 10:30 AM  

Ankney Legislative Office Hours 

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


9:30 AM – 10:30 AM 

Marshalltown Listening Post 

Iowa Veterans Home (1301 Summit Street, Marshalltown, IA  50158) 


12:00 PM – 1:00 PM 

Washington Legislative Briefing 

Kalona Historical Village (715 D Avenue, Kalona, IA  52247) 


8:00 AM – 9:30 AM 

Epworth Legislative Forum 

Rosie's Coffee House (106 West Main Street, Epworth, IA  52045) 


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 

Storm Lake Legislative Forum 

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


10:00 AM – 10:00 AM 

Eldridge Listening Post 

North Scott High School (200 South 1st Street, Eldridge, IA 52748) 


5:00 PM - 6:00 PM 

Jefferson Meet Your Legislator 

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

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

April 3, 2024:  Matt and Julie pose with Herky on Hawkeye Caucus Day.  

week 13

rg pic