With the first big funnel fast approaching, this week has been committed to getting bills through subcommittees. It is already too late to request a bill to be drafted for this session. Bills have until March 3 to make it through subcommittee in order to be placed on the debate calendar.
Let me touch on a few bills I have been working on. I sponsored a bill for ATV use in municipalities. It would have clarified the Iowa Law Code giving cities and town’s jurisdiction over state roads within city limits. It was one of three bills related to ATV use and road crossings. The chairman of the Transportation Committee has discretion over which bill he will forward. He only wants one bill.
Many sportsmen have been following HF 210. With the amendments to limit the straight-walled rifles that shoot handgun cartridges to the youth season and the two shotgun seasons, the bill passed the Natural Resource Committee 21 to 0. After the committee meeting, the DNR pointed out that the bill failed to include the handicap season that runs concurrent to youth season. There will be an amendment on the floor to fix this oversight. The DNR has been fantastic to work with on this initiative. The bill has broad bipartisan support. I was appointed as floor manager for this bill in the House.
I also chaired HF 182 granting the adjutant general of Iowa to waive certain requirements and limitations of the National Guard Educational Assistance Program under certain conditions. This will make assistance available for graduate studies in some cases.
We have had a few short debates with limited floor action this week to move bipartisan bills. They were non-controversial bills and received virtually no media coverage. I expect things to get intense after funnel week and controversy will return to the debate floor.
I was honored to welcome a few guests to the Capitol this week, including members of United to Serve with Passion and Purpose and Christians in Public Service and students from Garner-Hayfield High School and West Hancock High School.