DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) – Gov. Kim Reynolds on Tuesday delivered her Condition of the State Address.
Gov. Reynolds provides her 2020 Condition of the State in Des Moines on Jan. 14, 2020.
Reynolds requested lawmakers on either side of the aisles to affix her in supporting a brand new invoice often known as the Invest in Iowa Act which might increase the state gross sales tax by 1 p.c.
She says the invoice will minimize revenue taxes 10 p.c and by as much as 25 p.c for low-income Iowans. She mentioned it’s going to additionally create a sustainable funding supply for Iowa’s psychological well being system.
The governor mentioned the act would additionally fund the Natural Resources and Outdoors Recreation Trust which funds state water high quality and out of doors recreation packages.
An enormous focus for Governor Reynolds’ handle appeared towards well being and psychological well being, and he or she had a constructive outlook. The governor mentioned psychological well being is changing into one of many greatest challenges of our time.
Reynolds needs to enhance the youngsters’s psychological well being system the state began final 12 months. Her plan contains offering predictable funding for it past the present funds that come from property taxes.
“No parent, family member or friend should be told that treatment isn’t available for their loved one,” she mentioned.
Governor Reynolds didn’t mince phrases when it got here to abortion. She says she’s centered on the general wellness of Iowans in all levels of life.
“We must protect life by making it clear through an amendment that our constitution does not grant a right to abortion. cheer, clapping,” she mentioned.
In 2018, Governor Reynolds signed a chunk of laws that may have banned abortion after a health care provider detects a fetal heartbeat, which may be as early as 6 weeks. A choose struck it down after Planned Parenthood and the ACLU filed a lawsuit.
The governor additionally lined many different subjects, together with flooding that devastated a lot of Iowa final 12 months. She instructed flood victims the state stands with them, and her finances plan contains 20 million in flood reduction.
The full transcript is under:
“Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, Lieutenant Governor, legislative leaders, Senators and Representatives, justices and judges, elected officers, distinguished friends, household, pals, and my fellow Iowans.
Each time I enter this spectacular constructing, I’m reminded of the generations of Iowans who’ve come earlier than us. And every time I stroll into this historic chamber, I’m humbled by the accountability of following within the footsteps of some superb leaders and excellent public servants.
We misplaced numerous these leaders final 12 months.
Most notable for us at this time is Chief Justice Mark Cady, whose absence is felt proper there within the entrance row. He liked his state. And he liked the legislation. To his household and colleagues within the Iowa Judicial Branch, our whole state shares your loss.
We additionally bid farewell to former Lt. Governor Joann Zimmerman, the primary lady elected Lt. Governor of this nice State. She introduced the guts of a nurse and the fervour of a mom to a distinguished profession in public service.
And with shared unhappiness we mourn the lack of Congressman Berkley Bedell, and former Iowa Supreme Court justices Daryl Hecht, and Bruce Snell, in addition to the longest-serving Chief Justice in state historical past, Art McGivern.
We honor these leaders—and so many extra—who dedicated their lives to creating tomorrow a little bit higher than at this time.
So typically public service comes with sacrifice. A sacrifice that our women and men in uniform make every day. Our navy, police, and first responders threat their lives to guard ours, and so at this time—and day-after-day—we should always thank those that serve and honor these we’ve misplaced.
In 2019 we noticed the resilience of Iowans examined as soon as once more as historic floods ravaged either side of our state and components in between. Entire communities had been worn out because the waters rose and didn’t appear to recede. But that devastation was met with goal and resolve to rebuild and recuperate.
To these whose lives have been impacted, your state stands with you as we work to return life to regular and get your properties, companies, and communities again on monitor. To try this, the finances I’m submitting at this time contains a further $20 million for flood reduction.
This is the third time I’ve stood earlier than you to report on the Condition of the State. As all the time, it’s a time to mirror on what we’ve accomplished over the past 12 months and to put out a imaginative and prescient for the 12 months to come back.
But this 12 months marks the start of a brand new decade, so it appears applicable that we take inventory in what we’ve completed the final 10 years. And extra essential, to speak about what we wish for the following 10—and past.
When this physique met in January 2010, our unemployment fee was 6.four p.c. Our state confronted a close to billion-dollar deficit. School funding was drastically minimize and Iowans had been fearful about their future.
A decade later, the situation of our state is really robust. Because of the imaginative and prescient and tenacity of Iowans, our unemployment fee has gone from a near-record excessive to a document low. Instead of slicing college budgets, we’re slicing taxes. Our money reserves are full, wages are going up, and Iowans as soon as once more consider we’re headed in the proper route.
Because we have now such an amazing story to inform, this 12 months we launched the “This is Iowa” marketing campaign. The purpose is to point out the nation what we have now to supply. To present that Iowa is the most effective place to dwell, work, and lift a household.
As a part of this new initiative, we created a candid-camera model video the place an actor, taking part in a real-estate agent, reveals Iowa home listings to New Yorkers. When the couples hear how large the properties are, how brief the commute is, and what they will purchase the properties for, they’re baffled. “That’s not possible,” is their common response.
When the actor tells them that these properties are in Iowa, not New York, they’re shocked and amazed. That’s not how they envisioned Iowa. That’s not what they’ve been instructed.
We made that video to dispel a few of the misconceptions and to showcase what we have now. But I believe the video serves one other goal: It reminds us what we have now.
Because it may be simple to overlook—overlook what it means to develop up in a secure neighborhood with college and a pleasant yard. To spend extra time with our households than we do in site visitors. And to look at the solar set in our large skies and the celebs shine over our stunning fields.
That’s what Iowa has to supply—and a lot extra. Those New Yorkers noticed what I see: That alternative lives right here.
But we can’t take it without any consideration. If we do, if we grow to be complacent, then the situation of the state is not going to be robust when this physique gathers 10 years from now.
That’s why this 12 months, 2020, we have to plan for 2030. For 2040. We have to seize the alternatives that exist in order that years from now, the following era of Iowans will inherit an Iowa whose greatness comes as no shock to anybody, together with New Yorkers.
That sort of planning takes work. It doesn’t occur all of sudden, and no single coverage will do. But that sort of planning additionally takes a daring imaginative and prescient. A imaginative and prescient that preserves our heritage whereas seizing our alternatives.
My request to this General Assembly is that you just be part of me in taking the primary daring step. Right now. This session.
In the approaching weeks, I’ll introduce the Invest in Iowa Act, a invoice that can:
considerably minimize revenue taxes,
create a sustainable funding supply for our psychological well being system,
scale back the burden of property taxpayers, and
fund the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust,
These modifications will make our imaginative and prescient a actuality. It’s an funding in our future. And it’s an funding in those that are our future.
Ten years in the past, Iowans voted to determine the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust. Funding that belief isn’t any small funding, however I consider it’s one we have to make. We got this stunning land to work but in addition to maintain. And preserving what we’ve been given have to be a accountability of all Iowans.
In 2010, the legislature established a system for distributing the Trust Fund. I voted for that system, as did each one in all my colleagues. But the challenges we face at this time and can face tomorrow are totally different than what we understood them to be 10 years in the past, so it’s time to amend the system.
Specifically, we have to enhance the sum of money that might be allotted for water high quality and conservation. Under my invoice, virtually 58% of the Trust Fund, an estimated $100 million, will go towards water-quality efforts yearly, representing an virtually 31% enhance in present funding.
We may also commit $52 million for different conservation and out of doors recreation efforts, representing a rise of 14.6% of present funding.
These investments is not going to solely support our conservation efforts, they’ll enhance our high quality of life and assist us retain and recruit a brand new era of Iowans.
I’ve little interest in elevating taxes, so any enhance in income from a gross sales tax have to be greater than offset by extra tax cuts. That begins with persevering with to cut back our uncompetitive income-tax charges. Two years in the past, because of lots of you on this room, we handed the biggest income-tax minimize in Iowa historical past. I mentioned then, and I’ve mentioned ever since: that wasn’t a one-and-done.
I intend to make good on that promise, which is why I’m proposing to chop revenue taxes by a further 10 p.c for nearly each Iowan, with lower-income Iowans receiving as a lot as a 25 p.c minimize subsequent 12 months.
Let me put that into perspective. Just one 12 months in the past, our prime tax bracket was at virtually 9 p.c, one of many worst within the nation. Now, with this new spherical of tax cuts, our prime fee might be down to five.5 p.c by 2023—vital progress that can make Iowa aggressive with our friends.
Mental well being is changing into one of many greatest challenges of our time. Two years in the past, we reformed our grownup psychological well being system, and final 12 months we created Iowa’s first youngsters’s psychological well being system—essential steps to placing Iowans on a path to wellness.
We should now present predictable funding. To date, property taxpayers have provided most of that help, by means of their county to the native mental-health areas. I’m proposing, by means of the Invest in Iowa Act, that we scale back property tax levies and supply the wanted funding by means of the State common fund.
No guardian, member of the family, or pal needs to be instructed that remedy isn’t out there for his or her liked one. By establishing a devoted and steady fund for psychological well being, we are going to give hope to so many who’re struggling in silence. It’s a promise we’ve made, and it’s a promise I intend to maintain.
The Invest in Iowa Act will convey significant change to Iowans within the very first 12 months. But most essential, it seems to be to the long run. To our kids and theirs.
If we take this daring step, proper now, then whoever is standing at this podium in 10, 20, or 30 years—Republican or Democrat—can proudly say what I can say at this time: The situation of our State is robust.
When I look to the following decade, I’m reminded of what Will Rogers as soon as mentioned, “the farmer has to be an optimist, or he wouldn’t still be a farmer.” From climate at dwelling to markets abroad, to bureaucratic selections made in Washington DC, a lot of our farmers’ success hinges on components seemingly out of their management.
But that doesn’t imply we merely sit again and hope another person fights for our pursuits. It’s as much as us to form the challenges of uncertainty into alternatives for progress. I’ll all the time be a relentless advocate for our farmers, producers, and our lifestyle.
Which is why at this time I’m calling for a further $2 million for the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program, in addition to modernizing and increasing the E-15 Plus Promotion Tax Credit. This will help the sale of E-15 12 months spherical and drive home demand for our homegrown renewable fuels.
As we start 2020, I’m centered on the general wellness of all Iowans, in each a part of the State, in all levels of life.
And after I say all levels of life, I imply to incorporate the unborn. We should defend life by making clear, by means of an modification, that our structure doesn’t grant a proper to abortion. It’s time, and sadly it’s obligatory.
We should additionally do extra to advertise and help maternal well being. Fewer docs and fewer hospitals are delivering infants and offering look after moms, particularly exterior our city areas.
That’s why I’m taking steps to extend the variety of docs who’re prepared and in a position to present OB providers in all 4 corners of our state.
First, I’m proposing a fellowship for brand spanking new family-practice physicians who need to practice and focus on OB care. Each 12 months, 4 new residents will full the fellowship program and head again to their native communities, taking with them connections to OB specialists and an experience to raised deal with moms and their infants.
Second, we’re launching a tele-mentoring system the place OBs at our greatest establishments can seek the advice of with physicians throughout the State. With this program, a health care provider in Corydon can discuss with a specialist in Iowa City about remedy for a mom with a high-risk being pregnant.
Using expertise to convey innovative well being care into each group is not a dream. Telehealth is actuality at this time however we’ve solely simply begun to scratch the floor. This 12 months, my finances contains extra funding to develop the usage of these providers to underserved Iowans.
I’ve additionally directed the Department of Human Services to take away obstacles which are limiting faculties from partnering with telehealth suppliers, particularly for behavioral well being. What was once a 70-mile drive in the midst of the college day can now be a stroll down the corridor. That means extra youngsters will obtain the care they want, with much less disruption to their training.
These advances usually are not attainable with out high-speed broadband. After unanimous help from this legislature, final 12 months the Empower Rural Iowa Act offered $5 million that’s now serving to to fund 17 broadband initiatives in rural Iowa.
Broadband just isn’t a luxurious; it’s essential infrastructure. From the farmer checking crop situations to the Main Street enterprise collaborating within the 24/7 market, connectivity needs to be the expectation irrespective of the place you reside.
Let’s make that expectation a actuality. Today, I’m requesting that we applicable a further $15 million and alter our state match so we will proceed to leverage personal and federal funding to construct out broadband to each a part of Iowa, making us essentially the most linked state within the nation.
Broadband additionally helps our world-class training system. And if there’s one thing Iowans have all the time understood, it’s that there isn’t any higher path to alternative than a top quality training.
We have robust native management, rooted in communities and oldsters who care deeply about educating their youngsters. We have the best high-school commencement fee within the nation and extra highschoolers taking school programs than another state.
We’ve made exceptional progress lately on placing a brand new deal with STEM—and opening doorways in elementary, center, and excessive faculties for college kids to discover fields that can greatest equip them to be the innovators who construct tomorrow’s financial system.
Computer science has shortly moved from a slender elective to a primary ability that each pupil wants.
That’s one thing the individuals at Osage Community Schools perceive and have embraced with a ardour.
In addition to requiring laptop science for college kids to graduate, they’ve dramatically elevated studying alternatives for Okay-12 college students to discover coding and design apps or discover their ardour on the earth of expertise. And, by means of an revolutionary partnership with NewBoCo in Cedar Rapids, Osage is coaching lecturers to raised combine laptop science in topics like math, English and artwork.
I need to acknowledge Osage and NewBoCo for his or her imaginative and prescient and congratulate the scholars for his or her success. You are a mannequin for our state and the nation. Please stand.
What Osage is doing is superb, and we want extra of it.
Currently, virtually two-thirds of college districts train laptop science in center and highschool. And about half train it in elementary college. We want that to be 100 p.c—which is why I’m calling on the Legislature to take laptop science statewide and guarantee each pupil, at each stage, has entry to this new primary ability.
One of the most effective methods for college kids to be taught is thru hands-on expertise, which is why we’re making Iowa a frontrunner in work-based studying. In the final 12 months alone, we’ve expanded high-school registered apprenticeships and launched the work-based studying clearinghouse, and this 12 months might be including $1 million for work-based studying coordinators to be lined by operational-sharing agreements.
Momentum for this initiative is constructing throughout the state. Council Bluffs is a good instance. The college district, Iowa Western Community College, and several other native companies have partnered to create TradeWorks Academy, the place high-school college students work with professionals to expertise what it’s prefer to have a profession as a plumber, electrician, or mechanic.
It’s a win-win for the scholars and the group. The college students be taught expertise that result in life-long careers. And native companies get the workforce they so desperately want.
Emma Myers, a junior, is utilizing TradeWorks to study welding. That’s what her dad has been doing for 40 years, and he or she needs to comply with in his footsteps. By the time she graduates highschool, she may have a welding certificates that may instantly result in a job proper there in Council Bluffs.
I need to acknowledge Emma and numerous people right here at this time from TradeWorks. Thank you in your management.
In 2019, we made historic investments in Okay-12 training, with over $90 million in new cash, together with a rise in per-pupil funding and transportation fairness.
The finances I’m presenting to you at this time makes one other historic funding, with over $103 million in new funding in order that Iowa faculties can keep the most effective lecturers and lecture rooms on the earth.
When it involves workforce alternatives, Iowa is in a powerful place. We have 1000’s of open jobs in rewarding careers. That’s why we launched Future Ready Iowa.
Three years after beginning the initiative, and only one 12 months after this physique overwhelmingly voted to approve funding, Iowans who’re on the lookout for a method up are discovering that chance.
Over 6,000 Iowans are already receiving the Last Dollar Scholarship, virtually 80 p.c of that are grownup learners. That’s 6,000 Iowans who’re on their method to a rewarding profession.
Take Sarah Keehn, a 35-year-old mom of six from Hampton who was laid off. Because of the Last Dollar Scholarship, she is now at NIACC pursuing a medical-assistant diploma, and shortly she’s going to assist fill the scarcity of employees within the healthcare business.
Zach Behrensmeyer from New Liberty is one other nice instance. He assumed school was one thing he couldn’t afford, however the Last Dollar Scholarship has enabled and inspired him to pursue a level in computer-software growth at Kirkwood. When Zach graduates this spring he’ll depart college with a extremely marketable diploma in a subject the place the common beginning wage is $55,000.
Sarah and Zach, please stand to be acknowledged.
Through the Employer Innovation Fund, Future Ready Iowa can be working to spur innovation amongst employers and communities in addressing their workforce wants.
In Muscatine, the local people basis partnered with Eastern Iowa Community College to create an intensive six-week program for low-income mother and father who’ve youngsters at school. They’re working to grow to be welders or certified-nursing assistants and, in the event that they keep on monitor by means of this system, a job might be ready for them on the finish.
On the opposite facet of the state, Peterbilt of Sioux City and Midwest Diesel Tech Academy developed a brand new coaching program to satisfy the growing demand for diesel mechanics within the space.
In Oskaloosa, the college district acknowledged transportation as a significant barrier for college kids to attend profession academies at Indian Hills Community College, so that they developed a transportation program to make it occur.
With all three of those and extra, the State of Iowa, by means of the Employer Innovation Fund, was a companion.
In lower than a 12 months, we have now helped 1000’s of Iowans upskill for the brand new financial system. Future Ready Iowa is working, which is why I’m proposing that we develop the Last Dollar Scholarship and the Employer Innovation Fund by $2.eight million every, bringing the overall funding to over $20 million.
Future Ready Iowa will infuse Iowa’s workforce with 1000’s of expert staff, offering a lot wanted help to our rising companies.
Childcare is the following workforce problem we have to sort out. It’s one other barrier for households on the lookout for a method up.
For some, it’s about affordability; for others, entry is the difficulty; and for 1000’s of Iowans, it’s each.
This 12 months we have to act.
First, let’s make childcare extra inexpensive by increasing Early Childhood tax credit. Currently, they’re out there to households making $45,000 or much less; I’m recommending that be doubled to $90,000.
Second, we should start to deal with the child-care cliff so we aren’t punishing mother and father as they proceed on a path to self-sufficiency. To do that, we should always implement a tiered co-pay system that doesn’t punish those that work onerous sufficient to earn a increase.
Finally, we have to enlist Iowans to seek out common sense options that enhance entry to childcare.
Consider Lee Container. It’s a producing facility in Centerville that employs 200 individuals. Since opening its doorways in 2008, they’ve expanded however had been struggling to seek out employees. Lack of childcare was a part of the issue, so Lee Container partnered with a neighborhood supplier to show a vacant elementary college right into a daycare heart.
That’s precisely the sort of innovation we want, which is why I’m opening the Employer Innovation Fund to employers and group organizations which have concepts to develop and create childcare choices of their communities.
I need to acknowledge Robert, the CEO of Lee Container, and Michelle from Curious Kids who’re with us to at this time. Thank you for uplifting this nice concept.
I’ve made it a precedence of this administration to deal with prisoner re-entry and rehabilitation, as a result of our prisons shouldn’t be one cease in a circle that leads again to jail. Those in our correctional amenities are serving time for a motive, however after they depart, we wish them to succeed. Because right here’s the factor: If they re-offend, they land again in jail, at a value to taxpayers of $32,000 per 12 months.
But it’s greater than that. When somebody has misplaced their method, we’re referred to as to hunt them out—to go away the 99 to seek out the one. I consider in that calling, which is why I fashioned the Governor’s FOCUS Committee on Criminal Justice Reform.
This committee, which is chaired by the Lt. Gov., contains legislation enforcement, corrections officers, the NAACP, and a variety of stakeholders. Last month, they offered a number of suggestions, and we’re already within the means of implementing lots of them.
Last 12 months, I signed laws that protects employers who’re prepared to offer returning residents a second likelihood. To construct on that, we hosted roundtables at our correctional amenities in Mitchellville and Rockwell City the place greater than 80 employers stepped inside our jail partitions—and perhaps a little bit exterior their consolation zone—to find out how they will meet their workforce wants and provides an Iowan a second likelihood at a productive and rewarding life.
Finally, I’m renewing my help to amend our Constitution in order that it not bars felons from voting after they’ve served their sentence.
To see why that issues, discuss to William Burt from Waterloo. He spent a lot of his life out and in of jail, however is now a enterprise proprietor who’s working to alter Iowa legislation to permit cellular barber retailers—which I believe is a good suggestion.
I just lately referred to as William to inform him that I used to be restoring his voting rights. Hearing these phrases introduced tears to his eyes. You can’t think about the gratitude and dignity that Iowans like William really feel after they’re instructed they will as soon as once more train what Ronald Reagan referred to as “the crown jewel of American liberties.”
William, please rise in order that we will acknowledge your efforts to be an lively and productive citizen of this nice State.
I’m grateful to the House for beginning this course of final 12 months by approving the constitutional modification with a powerful bipartisan vote of 95 to 2. I additionally recognize the productive conversations we’re having with Senators, and I look ahead to persevering with to work with you to go the modification and craft an implementing statute that lets us keep away from the confusion and lawsuits which have plagued different states’ restoration efforts.
Together, we will help put returning residents on a path to redemption. We will help them grow to be productive members of society, scale back recidivism, and make our communities a safer place.
Opportunity lives right here due to the ingenuity of our individuals. If Iowa goes to thrive within the subsequent decade, we should ensure that authorities isn’t stifling that ingenuity.
I’m involved we’re.
One quarter of Iowa’s workforce requires some sort of skilled license. If that appears like so much, that’s as a result of it’s. It’s the second highest within the nation, which places our state and its individuals at a aggressive drawback.
A current examine reveals that our licensing system price Iowa 48,000 jobs and $290 million.
Our licensing necessities are additionally the worst for low-income individuals, which means that those that want alternative essentially the most have the toughest time getting a license.
We ought to by no means dismiss the significance of defending the well being and security of the individuals, but it surely’s been far too lengthy since we’ve modernized our licensing construction. That’s what I’m asking you to do at this time.
First, we have to undertake common licensing recognition. Those who undergo a rigorous utility course of in one other state, and meet sure situations in our state, ought to be capable of have that license acknowledged right here. Let’s encourage these expert employees to maneuver to Iowa.
Second, we should always waive license charges for low-income people. That doesn’t imply we decrease any requirements. It simply ensures that we don’t deny somebody knowledgeable license merely due to their lack of ability to pay.
Third, we at the moment haven’t any uniform normal for contemplating legal convictions in licensure. As a end result, certified and expert Iowans are being denied the prospect to acquire a license due to errors unrelated to the career they now need to enter. This is one other barrier to ex-offenders reentering the workforce and we have to change it.
Lastly, we want higher oversight of the whole professional-licensing course of. I’m calling for the creation of a fee that can, each 4 years, evaluate each skilled license requirement and the boards that oversee them.
Licensing reform is a subject that has bipartisan help, however that doesn’t imply it is going to be simple. There will all the time be entrenched pursuits who profit from overly burdensome laws. But we will’t let these pursuits stand in the way in which of alternative. These reforms are lengthy overdue, and that is the 12 months we are going to start to repair a damaged system.
As we head into this legislative session, let’s not focus solely on the following 12 months. This is a time to chart the trail for the following ten years. To stand collectively to enact a complete agenda that:
invests in Iowa,
returns cash to taxpayers
preserves our land and water,
strengthens our faculties,
takes care of the well being and well-being of all Iowans,
and provides each Iowan the chance to succeed.
So as we transfer into the following decade, let’s put Iowans first. Let’s be daring and visionary.
Let’s seize this chance and make the following decade Iowa’s greatest.
It’s time to point out the world that Opportunity Lives Here.
Thank you, God bless you, and God bless the good state of Iowa.”