Legislative Updates

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  • 27 Nov 2022 9:57 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    House GOP Committee Assignments Set

    The House Republicans have released their committee assignments.  Below are committees of interest.


    Education

    Rep. Skyler Wheeler – Chair

    Rep.-Elect Craig Johnson - Vice Chair

    Rep. Steven Bradley

    Rep. Brooke Boden

    Rep.-Elect Taylor Collins

    Rep. Joel Fry

    Rep.-Elect Dan Gehlbach

    Rep.-Elect Bill Gustoff

    Rep. Steve Holt

    Rep.-Elect Heather Hora

    Rep. Chad Ingels

    Rep. Tom Moore

    Rep. Anne Osmundson

    Rep. Bubba Sorensen

    Rep. Henry Stone


    Education Reform
    Rep. Pat Grassley – Chair
    Rep. Matt Windschitl - Vice Chair
    Rep. John Wills


    Health and Human Services

    Rep. Ann Meyer – Chair

    Rep.-Elect Devon Wood - Vice Chair

    Rep. Eddie Andrews

    Rep. Michael Bergan

    Rep. Brian Best

    Rep. Brooke Boden

    Rep. Steven Bradley

    Rep. Joel Fry

    Rep. Tom Jeneary

    Rep.-Elect Barb Kniff-McCulla

    Rep. Brian Lohse

    Rep. Shannon Lundgren

    Rep. Tom Moore

    Rep.-Elect Hans Wilz


    Education Appropriations

    Rep. Carter Nordman – Chair

    Rep.-Elect Bob Henderson - Vice Chair

    Rep.-Elect Taylor Collins

    Rep. Brent Siegrist

    Rep. Skyler Wheeler

     

    Health and Human Services Appropriations

    Rep. Joel Fry – Chair

    Rep.-Elect Hans Wilz - Vice Chair

    Rep. Tom Jeneary

    Rep. Shannon Lundgren

    Rep. Ann Meyer


    Appropriations

    Rep. Gary Mohr – Chair

    Rep.-Elect Taylor Collins - Vice Chair

    Rep. Michael Bergan

    Rep. Jacob Bossman

    Rep. Joel Fry

    Rep. Martin Graber

    Rep. Steve Holt

    Rep. Shannon Latham

    Rep. Brian Lohse

    Rep. Ann Meyer

    Rep. Norlin Mommsen

    Rep. Carter Nordman

    Rep. Bubba Sorensen

    Rep. Henry Stone

    Rep.-Elect Devon Wood

    Rep.-Elect David Young


  • 17 Nov 2022 3:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Senate Sets Committee Chairs

    The Senate Republicans have announced their Committee Chairs for the upcoming Legislative Session.

    The Senate has chosen to rename two committees, changing the Labor Committee to the Workforce Committee, and Human Resources Committee to the Health and Human Resources Committee.

    The chamber is also creating a new Technology Committee which focuses on information technology, telecommunication and cybersecurity.

    Standing Committees

    Agriculture

    Senator Dawn Driscoll, R-Williamsburg

    Appropriations

    Senator Tim Kraayenbrink, R-Ft. Dodge

    Commerce

    Senator Waylon Brown, R-Osage

    Education

    Senator Ken Rozenboom, R-Pella

    Government Oversight

    Senator Amy Sinclair, R-Allerton

    Health and Human Services 

    (Human Resources has been renamed Health and Human Services)

    Senator Jeff Edler, R-State Center

    Judiciary

    Senator Brad Zaun, R-Urbandale

    Local Government

    Senator Jesse Green, R-Boone 

    Natural Resources and Environment

    Senator Annette Sweeney, R-Alden

    Rules and Administration

    Senator Jack Whitver

    State Government

    Senator Jason Schultz, R-Schleswig

    Technology

    (The Technology Committee will focus on information technology, telecommunications, cybersecurity, and other related policies.)  

    Senator Chris Cournoyer, R-LeClaire

    Transportation

    Senator Mike Klimesh, R-Spillville

    Veterans Affairs

    Senator Jeff Reichman, R-Montrose

    Ways and Means

    Senator Dan Dawson, R-Council Bluffs

    Workforce 

    (the Labor Committee has been renamed the Workforce Committee)

    Senator Adrian Dickey, R-Packwood

     

    Appropriations Subcommittees

    Administration and Regulation

    Senator Dave Rowley, R-Spirit Lake

    Agriculture and Natural Resources

    Senator Dan Zumbach, R-Ryan

    Economic Development

    Senator Mark Lofgren, R-Muscatine

    Education

    Senator Jeff Taylor, R-Sioux Center

    Health and Human Services

    Senator Mark Costello, R-Imogene

    Justice Systems

    Senator Julian Garrett, R-Indianola

    Transportation, Infrastructure and Capitals

    Senator Carrie Koelker, R-Dyersville


  • 16 Nov 2022 3:04 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    House of Representatives Sets Committee Chairs

    The House GOP has announced their committee chairs for the 23-24 Session of the Iowa Legislature.  

    Representative Skyler Wheeler of Sioux County will Chair the Education Committee and Representative Carter Nordman of Panora will lead the House side of the Education Appropriations Subcommittee.

    The announcement also includes the formation of a new committee, the Education Reform Committee, which will be Chaired by Speaker Pat Grassley. The announcement noted that the new committee will consider “bills containing significant reforms to our educational system.”

    Standing Committees:

    Administrative Rules Review

    Rep. Megan Jones (R-Sioux Rapids) – Chair

    Agriculture

    Rep. Mike Sexton (R-Rockwell City) – Chair

    Appropriations

    Rep. Gary Mohr (R-Bettendorf) – Chair

    Commerce

    Rep. Shannon Lundgren (R-Peosta) – Chair

    Economic Growth

    Rep. Ray Sorensen (R-Greenfield) – Chair

    Education

    Rep. Skyler Wheeler (R-Hull) – Chair

    Education Reform

    Rep. Pat Grassley (R-New Hartford) – Chair

    *The Education Reform Committee will be a 5-person committee dealing with bills containing significant reforms to our educational system

    Environmental Protection

    Rep. Dean Fisher (R-Montour) – Chair

    Government Oversight

    Rep. Brooke Boden (R-Indianola) – Chair

    Human Resources

    Rep. Ann Meyer (R-Fort Dodge) – Chair

    Judiciary

    Rep. Steve Holt (R-Denison) – Chair

    Labor

    Rep. Dave Deyoe (R-Nevada) – Chair

    Local Government

    Rep. Shannon Latham (R-Sheffield) – Chair

    Natural Resources

    Rep. Tom Jeneary (R-Le Mars) – Chair

    Public Safety

    Rep. Phil Thompson (R-Jefferson) – Chair

    State Government

    Rep. Jane Bloomingdale (R-Northwood) – Chair

    Transportation

    Rep. Brian Best (R-Glidden) – Chair

    Veterans Affairs

    Rep. Chad Ingels (R-Randalia) – Chair

    Ways & Means

    Rep. Bobby Kaufmann (R-Wilton) – Chair

    Appropriations Subcommittees:

    Administration and Regulation Appropriations

    Rep. Michael Bergan (R-Dorchester) – Chair

    Agriculture and Natural Resources Appropriations

    Rep. Norlin Mommsen (R-DeWitt) – Chair

    Economic Development Appropriations

    Rep. Martin Graber (R-Fort Madison) – Chair

    Education Appropriations

    Rep. Carter Nordman (R-Panora) – Chair

    Health and Human Services Appropriations

    Rep. Joel Fry (R-Osceola) – Chair

    Justice Systems Appropriations

    Rep. Brian Lohse (R-Bondurant) – Chair

    Transportation, Infrastructure, and Capitals Appropriations

    Rep. Jacob Bossman (R-Sioux City) – Chair



  • 10 Nov 2022 3:03 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    House and Senate GOP Choose Chamber Leaders

    House and Senate Republicans met today to elect leaders for the upcoming 90th session of the Iowa Legislature.

    In the House, Representative Pat Grassley was chosen to again serve as Speaker of the House and Representative Matt Windschitl will continue as Majority Leader.

    Senator Jack Whitver will continue to serve as that chamber’s Majority Leader.  Senator Amy Sinclair was chosen by the members of her caucus to serve as Senate President.

    With Senator Sinclair taking over as Senate President, a new Chair for that chamber’s Education Committee will soon be appointed.


  • 09 Nov 2022 3:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Iowa House and Senate Majority Parties Remain Unchanged

    With a statewide turnout of nearly 55-percent of registered voters, the makeup of the Iowa Legislature has been set, for the most part, for the upcoming 2023 Session of the General Assembly with the Republicans remaining in the majority in both the House and Senate.

    We say “for the most part” because of problems counting absentee votes in Des Moines County.  The Burlington Hawkeye reports that a recount of the absentee ballots cast in the county will take place either later this week or early next week.

    The results of the contest for House District 99, which includes the city of Burlington, will not be known until the recount takes place.  This race pits the longest tenured state lawmaker, Democrat Representative Dennis Cohoon, against GOP challenger Matt Rinker. Currently Rinker leads Cohoon by 770 votes.

    In a rematch of House candidates from 2020, Democrat Heather Matson topped incumbent Republican Garrett Gobble by 24 votes in District 42 which is made up mostly of Ankney.

    Incumbent Democrat Phyllis Thede was defeated by GOP newcomer Mike Vondren in House District 94, which includes portions of Davenport and Bettendorf, while Sioux City incumbent Democrat Steve Hansen was knocked off by Republican Robert Henderson.

    In the Senate, redistricting pitted an incumbent against an incumbent in two new districts..

    Democrat Sarah Trone Garriott defeated Republican Jake Chapman by over 800 votes in a battle for the new Senate District 14 in west suburban Des Moines.

    In Eastern Iowa, Republican Dawn Driscoll topped Democrat Kevin Kinney by more than 2000 votes.

    Also, Sioux City incumbent Democrat Senator Jackie Smith lost her reelection bid to Republican challenger Rocky De Witt by over 1400 votes.


    Reynolds Re-Elected Governor

    Incumbent Governor Kim Reynolds easily won reelection over Democrat challenger Deidre DeJear.  Reynolds’ margin of victory was well over 200,000 votes.


    2023 Iowa Legislative Session Timetable

    The 90th Session of the Iowa General Assembly is set to begin on Monday, January 9 and run for 110 days. 


    Below are the key procedural dates that guide the flow of the legislative session:

    January 9 - First day of the session

    February 10 - Last day for individual lawmaker bill requests to be made.

    March 3 - First “funnel” - This is the date by which a bill must be approved by a standing committee of its house of origin to remain eligible for further consideration that year. Appropriations, Ways and Means and Government Oversight committee bills are the exceptions to the “funnel” rules, as they are exempt from procedural deadlines.

    March 31 - Second “funnel” - This is the date by which a bill has to be approved by a committee in the opposite chamber - meaning a House File must be approved by a Senate committee and a Senate File by a House committee to remain eligible for further consideration this year.

    Appropriations, Ways and Means and Government Oversight committee bills are the exceptions to the “funnel” rules, as they are exempt from procedural deadlines.

    April 28 - the 110th calendar day of the session


  • 20 May 2022 4:46 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    “THAW” BRINGS BUDGET AGREEMENTS - SESSION END NEAR

    The icy relationship between the Senate and House has begun to thaw, and an end to the 2022 Session of the Iowa Legislature is appearing on the near horizon.

    This past Wednesday the Senate Appropriations Committee met and approved the House and Senate negotiated spending agreements for most of the nine budget bills.

    Both chambers plan to reconvene this upcoming Monday, with the goal of concluding the 2022 Session of the Iowa Legislature by the end of that week.


    ED SPENDING AGREEMENT LINE ITEMS REVEALED

    The Senate/House Education Appropriation spending agreement, unveiled during Senate budget committee deliberations, includes the following appropriations of interest:

    $520,000 - Non-prescribing MH practitioner loan repayment program (new)

    $3.183 million - Children's Mental Health School-Based Training & Support Program

    It is important to note that the policy pieces in the House version of the Education spending bill were not addressed by the Senate Appropriations Committee.


    HHS BUDGET AGREEMENT NEAR

    The remaining Health and Human Services budget issues of disagreement between the House of Representatives and the Senate are being negotiated.

    A draft of the spending and policy compromise is expected late today or early next week.

    We will keep you updated.


    Bills of Interest:

    (HF - House File, HSB - House Study Bill, SF - Senate File, SSB - Senate Study Bill)


    SF 2369 (formerly SF 2349 and SSB 3080) - Governor’s School Omnibus (M) - Included in this 20-page bill are provision that establish a student first scholarship program and a student first enrollment supplement fund; require the boards of directors of school districts to publish certain specified information regarding curriculum; as well as modifying provisions related to required social studies instruction, open enrollment, teacher librarian endorsements, competent private instruction, and special education.

    Approved by the Senate 31-18. Referred to House Appropriations


    SF 2195 (formerly SSB 3003) - Mental Health Professional Loan Program (F) - This bill establishes the mental health professional loan repayment program within the college student aid commission. The bill provides that the commission is to administer the mental health professional loan repayment program for purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in an eligible practice area.

    The bill limits the annual amount of loan repayment a mental health professional may receive to $8,000 for an eligible loan. The bill provides that the total loan repayments from the commission to a mental health professional shall not exceed $40,000.

    “Mental health professional” means a non prescribing individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including  psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling.

    On Senate debate calendar


    HF 2578 - Health and Human Services Appropriations (F) - Included in this 79-page bill is the requirement that the DHS to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to request the addition of functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. The Department will include functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy under the Medicaid program as covered services upon receipt of federal approval.  The bill also includes a $200,000 appropriation for the provision of this therapy;

    The bill also prohibits health carriers from excluding out-of-state health care professionals who provide services for mental health conditions, illnesses, injuries, or diseases from participating as providers via telehealth, under a policy, plan, or contract offered by the health carrier if the professional is licensed in Iowa,  is able to deliver health care services for mental health via telehealth and is able to satisfy the same criteria that the carrier uses to qualify in-state professionals, who hold the same license as the out-of-state professional, as providers.

    Also in the bill $7.4 million is appropriated for the reduction of the HCBS waiver waiting list for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

    Approved by the House 60-35. On the Senate debate calendar.


    HF 2575 - Education Appropriations (F) - Included in this spending bill for fiscal year 2023 are two provisions of interest; 1) $1.5 M for the Mental Health Professional Loan Repayment Program; and 2) $3,183,936 for the continuation of the Children’s Mental Health School-Based Training and Support program

    Approved by the House 58-36.  On the Senate debate calendar.

     

    HF 2567 (formerly HF 2505 and HSB 702) - Mandatory Reporters/School Employee Investigations (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to develop and implement a process for the reporting and investigation of any incident that arises which may reasonably lead to the conclusion that a licensed practitioner employed by the board of directors of a school district or the authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school has violated any law. The bill establishes that the process requires the creation of a committee to investigate these incidents. The bill requires the committee to meet to evaluate the incident and determine whether the licensed practitioner should be placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

    Approved by the House 93-0. Senate subcommittee of Sinclair, Goodwin and Quirmbach


    HF 2554 (formerly HF 2553 and HF 2310) - Functional Family Therapy (M) - This bill requires the department of human services to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to include functional family therapy (FFT) and multisystemic therapy (MST) for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. Both FFT and MST are evidence-based treatments for youth that address a youth’s home and environment to reduce problematic behavior and divert the youth from the juvenile justice system. The language of this bill is also included in HF 2578.

    Passed the House 94-0.


    HF 2549 (formerly HF 2137 and HSB 537) - MH Professional Loan Repayment Program (F) - This bill establishes a mental health professional loan repayment program. The bill requires the Iowa Student Aid Commission to establish a mental health professional loan repayment program for the purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in service commitment areas for at least five years and meet the requirements of the program. “Mental health professional” means an individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling. 

    Approved by the House 94-2. Amended and approved by the Senate 44-0.


    HF 2398 (formerly HSB 656) - Doctors or Masters BOEE One Time Licenses and Nonpublic School Background Checks (M) - The bill allows the Board of Educational Examiners to have no renewal requirements for a practitioner who has been employed as a practitioner for at least ten years and has a master’s or doctoral degree. The bill also requires nonpublic schools to utilize the Iowa courts online system, sex offender registry and child abuse registry for employee background checks.

    Approved by House 99-0. On the Senate debate calendar.


    HF 2298 (formerly HF 2040) - Covid Vaccination Not Required For School (A) - This bill prohibits requiring an immunization against COVID-19 for a person to be enrolled in any licensed child care center, elementary or secondary school, or postsecondary school in Iowa prior to July 1, 2029, notwithstanding whether a person’s attendance is in person or virtual.

    Approved by the House 57-36. On the House debate calendar.



    Approved by both the House and Senate:


    HF 2416 (formerly HF 2309) - Athletic Participation (A) - The bill requires an college, junior college or interscholastic athletic team, sport,or athletic event that is sponsored or sanctioned by an accredited nonpublic school, school district, or athletic organization must be designated as females, women, or girls; males, men, or boys; or coeducational or mixed based on the sex at birth of the participating students. The bill also requires that only female students, based on their sex, may participate in any team, sport, or athletic event designated as being for females, women, or girls. The bill defines “sex” to mean a person’s biological sex as either female or male, and provides that the sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate or certificate issued upon adoption may be relied upon if the certificate was issued at or near the time of the student’s birth.

    Approved by the House 55-39. Approved by the Senate 31-17. Signed into law by the Governor.


    SF 2197 (formerly SF 168) - Nonpublic School Special Services (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to convene and provide administrative support to the task force. The bill requires the task force to study and make recommendations regarding how to better serve students enrolled in nonpublic schools who receive special education services. The bill requires the task force to submit a report that includes findings and recommendations for policy changes to the General Assembly by December 1, 2022.

    Approved by the Senate 46-0. Approved by the House 94-0. Signed into law.


  • 13 May 2022 6:16 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    NO LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY THIS WEEK

    The stalemate between the House and Senate and Governor continued for a third week at the Statehouse.

    Both chambers did “gavel-in and gavel-out” on Monday and Thursday of this week, but did not conduct any business.

    Some behind the scenes budget conversations are taking place between members of the Senate and House, but no formal talks have been reported.

    We will keep you updated on the continuing Legislative impasse.


  • 06 May 2022 3:38 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    SENATE & HOUSE GIVE EACH OTHER THE COLD-SHOULDER

    The stalemate between the Senate and House is now well into its second week, and there is no end in sight.

    17 days have now passed since the scheduled conclusion of the current legislative session, back on April, 19. While the House has approved all the necessary budget bills (Ag and DNR, Infrastructure, Education, Health and Human Services, Justice Systems, etc) the Senate has yet to begin consideration of any of the spending legislation.

    The two chambers are reportedly over $70 million apart, as the Senate is seeking to appropriate approximately $70 million less than the House.

    Disagreement between the House and the Governor on the establishment of a school voucher program is also contributing to the impasse.

    No word yet on when the legislature will return to the Statehouse to work toward an end to the 2022 Legislative Session.


    Bills of Interest:

    (HF - House File, HSB - House Study Bill, SF - Senate File, SSB - Senate Study Bill)


    SF 2369 (formerly SF 2349 and SSB 3080) - Governor’s School Omnibus (M) - Included in this 20-page bill are provision that establish a student first scholarship program and a student first enrollment supplement fund; require the boards of directors of school districts to publish certain specified information regarding curriculum; as well as modifying provisions related to required social studies instruction, open enrollment, teacher librarian endorsements, competent private instruction, and special education.

    Approved by the Senate 31-18. Referred to House Appropriations


    SF 2195 (formerly SSB 3003) - Mental Health Professional Loan Program (F) - This bill establishes the mental health professional loan repayment program within the college student aid commission. The bill provides that the commission is to administer the mental health professional loan repayment program for purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in an eligible practice area.

    The bill limits the annual amount of loan repayment a mental health professional may receive to $8,000 for an eligible loan. The bill provides that the total loan repayments from the commission to a mental health professional shall not exceed $40,000.

    “Mental health professional” means a non prescribing individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including  psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling.

    On Senate debate calendar


    HF 2578 - Health and Human Services Appropriations (F) - Included in this 79-page bill is the requirement that the DHS to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to request the addition of functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. The Department will include functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy under the Medicaid program as covered services upon receipt of federal approval.  The bill also includes a $200,000 appropriation for the provision of this therapy;

    The bill also prohibits health carriers from excluding out-of-state health care professionals who provide services for mental health conditions, illnesses, injuries, or diseases from participating as providers via telehealth, under a policy, plan, or contract offered by the health carrier if the professional is licensed in Iowa,  is able to deliver health care services for mental health via telehealth and is able to satisfy the same criteria that the carrier uses to qualify in-state professionals, who hold the same license as the out-of-state professional, as providers.

    Also in the bill $7.4 million is appropriated for the reduction of the HCBS waiver waiting list for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

    Approved by the House 60-35. Referred to Senate Appropriations


    HF 2575 - Education Appropriations (F) - Included in this spending bill for fiscal year 2023 are two provisions of interest; 1) $1.5 M for the Mental Health Professional Loan Repayment Program; and 2) $3,183,936 for the continuation of the Children’s Mental Health School-Based Training and Support program

    Approved by the House 58-36.  Referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

     

    HF 2567 (formerly HF 2505 and HSB 702) - Mandatory Reporters/School Employee Investigations (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to develop and implement a process for the reporting and investigation of any incident that arises which may reasonably lead to the conclusion that a licensed practitioner employed by the board of directors of a school district or the authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school has violated any law. The bill establishes that the process requires the creation of a committee to investigate these incidents. The bill requires the committee to meet to evaluate the incident and determine whether the licensed practitioner should be placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

    Approved by the House 93-0. Senate subcommittee of Sinclair, Goodwin and Quirmbach


    HF 2554 (formerly HF 2553 and HF 2310) - Functional Family Therapy (M) - This bill requires the department of human services to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to include functional family therapy (FFT) and multisystemic therapy (MST) for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. Both FFT and MST are evidence-based treatments for youth that address a youth’s home and environment to reduce problematic behavior and divert the youth from the juvenile justice system. The language of this bill is also included in HF 2578.

    Passed the House 94-0.


    HF 2549 (formerly HF 2137 and HSB 537) - MH Professional Loan Repayment Program (F) - This bill establishes a mental health professional loan repayment program. The bill requires the Iowa Student Aid Commission to establish a mental health professional loan repayment program for the purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in service commitment areas for at least five years and meet the requirements of the program. “Mental health professional” means an individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling. 

    Approved by the House 94-2. Amended and approved by the Senate 44-0.


    HF 2398 (formerly HSB 656) - Doctors or Masters BOEE One Time Licenses and Nonpublic School Background Checks (M) - The bill allows the Board of Educational Examiners to have no renewal requirements for a practitioner who has been employed as a practitioner for at least ten years and has a master’s or doctoral degree. The bill also requires nonpublic schools to utilize the Iowa courts online system, sex offender registry and child abuse registry for employee background checks.

    Approved by House 99-0. On the Senate debate calendar.


    HF 2298 (formerly HF 2040) - Covid Vaccination Not Required For School (A) - This bill prohibits requiring an immunization against COVID-19 for a person to be enrolled in any licensed child care center, elementary or secondary school, or postsecondary school in Iowa prior to July 1, 2029, notwithstanding whether a person’s attendance is in person or virtual.

    Approved by the House 57-36. On the House debate calendar.


    Approved by both the House and Senate:


    HF 2416 (formerly HF 2309) - Athletic Participation (A) - The bill requires an college, junior college or interscholastic athletic team, sport,or athletic event that is sponsored or sanctioned by an accredited nonpublic school, school district, or athletic organization must be designated as females, women, or girls; males, men, or boys; or coeducational or mixed based on the sex at birth of the participating students. The bill also requires that only female students, based on their sex, may participate in any team, sport, or athletic event designated as being for females, women, or girls. The bill defines “sex” to mean a person’s biological sex as either female or male, and provides that the sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate or certificate issued upon adoption may be relied upon if the certificate was issued at or near the time of the student’s birth.

    Approved by the House 55-39. Approved by the Senate 31-17. Signed into law by the Governor.


    SF 2197 (formerly SF 168) - Nonpublic School Special Services (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to convene and provide administrative support to the task force. The bill requires the task force to study and make recommendations regarding how to better serve students enrolled in nonpublic schools who receive special education services. The bill requires the task force to submit a report that includes findings and recommendations for policy changes to the General Assembly by December 1, 2022.

    Approved by the Senate 46-0. Approved by the House 94-0. Signed into law.


  • 03 May 2022 7:54 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    HOUSE AND SENATE FAR APART ON APPROPRIATIONS

    The Senate and House are continuing their legislative standoff. Now both chambers are preparing to begin budget negotiations for fiscal year 2023.

    The House has approved all the necessary budget bills (Ag and DNR, Infrastructure, Education, Health and Human Services, etc) but the Senate has yet to begin consideration of any of the spending legislation.

    Lawmakers are indicating that the negotiations may be difficult, as the Senate is seeking to appropriate approximately $70 million less than the House.

    We will keep you updated.


    Bills of Interest:

    (HF - House File, HSB - House Study Bill, SF - Senate File, SSB - Senate Study Bill)


    SF 2369 (formerly SF 2349 and SSB 3080) - Governor’s School Omnibus (M) - Included in this 20-page bill are provision that establish a student first scholarship program and a student first enrollment supplement fund; require the boards of directors of school districts to publish certain specified information regarding curriculum; as well as modifying provisions related to required social studies instruction, open enrollment, teacher librarian endorsements, competent private instruction, and special education.

    Approved by the Senate 31-18. Referred to House Appropriations


    SF 2195 (formerly SSB 3003) - Mental Health Professional Loan Program (F) - This bill establishes the mental health professional loan repayment program within the college student aid commission. The bill provides that the commission is to administer the mental health professional loan repayment program for purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in an eligible practice area.

    The bill limits the annual amount of loan repayment a mental health professional may receive to $8,000 for an eligible loan. The bill provides that the total loan repayments from the commission to a mental health professional shall not exceed $40,000.

    “Mental health professional” means a non prescribing individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including  psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling.

    On Senate debate calendar


    HF 2578 - Health and Human Services Appropriations (F) - Included in this 79-page bill is the requirement that the DHS to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to request the addition of functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. The Department will include functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy under the Medicaid program as covered services upon receipt of federal approval.  The bill also includes a $200,000 appropriation for the provision of this therapy;

    The bill also prohibits health carriers from excluding out-of-state health care professionals who provide services for mental health conditions, illnesses, injuries, or diseases from participating as providers via telehealth, under a policy, plan, or contract offered by the health carrier if the professional is licensed in Iowa,  is able to deliver health care services for mental health via telehealth and is able to satisfy the same criteria that the carrier uses to qualify in-state professionals, who hold the same license as the out-of-state professional, as providers.

    Also in the bill $7.4 million is appropriated for the reduction of the HCBS waiver waiting list for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

    Approved by the House 60-35. Referred to Senate Appropriations


    HF 2575 - Education Appropriations (F) - Included in this spending bill for fiscal year 2023 are two provisions of interest; 1) $1.5 M for the Mental Health Professional Loan Repayment Program; and 2) $3,183,936 for the continuation of the Children’s Mental Health School-Based Training and Support program

    Approved by the House 58-36.  Referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

     

    HF 2567 (formerly HF 2505 and HSB 702) - Mandatory Reporters/School Employee Investigations (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to develop and implement a process for the reporting and investigation of any incident that arises which may reasonably lead to the conclusion that a licensed practitioner employed by the board of directors of a school district or the authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school has violated any law. The bill establishes that the process requires the creation of a committee to investigate these incidents. The bill requires the committee to meet to evaluate the incident and determine whether the licensed practitioner should be placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

    Approved by the House 93-0. Senate subcommittee of Sinclair, Goodwin and Quirmbach


    HF 2554 (formerly HF 2553 and HF 2310) - Functional Family Therapy (M) - This bill requires the department of human services to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to include functional family therapy (FFT) and multisystemic therapy (MST) for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. Both FFT and MST are evidence-based treatments for youth that address a youth’s home and environment to reduce problematic behavior and divert the youth from the juvenile justice system. The language of this bill is also included in HF 2578.

    Passed the House 94-0.


    HF 2549 (formerly HF 2137 and HSB 537) - MH Professional Loan Repayment Program (F) - This bill establishes a mental health professional loan repayment program. The bill requires the Iowa Student Aid Commission to establish a mental health professional loan repayment program for the purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in service commitment areas for at least five years and meet the requirements of the program. “Mental health professional” means an individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling. 

    Approved by the House 94-2. Amended and approved by the Senate 44-0.


    HF 2398 (formerly HSB 656) - Doctors or Masters BOEE One Time Licenses and Nonpublic School Background Checks (M) - The bill allows the Board of Educational Examiners to have no renewal requirements for a practitioner who has been employed as a practitioner for at least ten years and has a master’s or doctoral degree. The bill also requires nonpublic schools to utilize the Iowa courts online system, sex offender registry and child abuse registry for employee background checks.

    Approved by House 99-0. On the Senate debate calendar.


    HF 2298 (formerly HF 2040) - Covid Vaccination Not Required For School (A) - This bill prohibits requiring an immunization against COVID-19 for a person to be enrolled in any licensed child care center, elementary or secondary school, or postsecondary school in Iowa prior to July 1, 2029, notwithstanding whether a person’s attendance is in person or virtual.

    Approved by the House 57-36. On the House debate calendar.


    Approved by both the House and Senate:


    HF 2416 (formerly HF 2309) - Athletic Participation (A) - The bill requires an college, junior college or interscholastic athletic team, sport,or athletic event that is sponsored or sanctioned by an accredited nonpublic school, school district, or athletic organization must be designated as females, women, or girls; males, men, or boys; or coeducational or mixed based on the sex at birth of the participating students. The bill also requires that only female students, based on their sex, may participate in any team, sport, or athletic event designated as being for females, women, or girls. The bill defines “sex” to mean a person’s biological sex as either female or male, and provides that the sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate or certificate issued upon adoption may be relied upon if the certificate was issued at or near the time of the student’s birth.

    Approved by the House 55-39. Approved by the Senate 31-17. Signed into law by the Governor.


    SF 2197 (formerly SF 168) - Nonpublic School Special Services (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to convene and provide administrative support to the task force. The bill requires the task force to study and make recommendations regarding how to better serve students enrolled in nonpublic schools who receive special education services. The bill requires the task force to submit a report that includes findings and recommendations for policy changes to the General Assembly by December 1, 2022.

    Approved by the Senate 46-0. Approved by the House 94-0. Signed into law.


  • 18 Apr 2022 8:16 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    SENATE AND HOUSE STILL FAR APART ON KEY PROPOSAL

    The House and Senate remain at loggerheads over the issue of establishing a school voucher program in the state.

    The voucher program is the centerpiece of Governor Reynolds’ education initiatives for the 2022 Legislative Session.

    So far the Senate has approved the bill (SF 2369) that includes this program, but the House has not, and there is no indication that the chamber plans on considering the legislation.

    This disagreement between the legislative chambers has brought budget negotiations to a standstill.

    The per diem (expense) payments for lawmakers for the 2022 Legislative Session end on April 19th.


    TELL HOUSE MEMBERS YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT A VOUCHER PROPOSAL

    As the House continues to assess its level of support for a school voucher program, it is important that you share your views on the proposal with members of the House of Representatives.

    To find the House of Representatives members in your area, and their contact information, please visit the webpage below:

    https://www.legis.iowa.gov/legislators/find


    Bills of Interest:

    (HF - House File, HSB - House Study Bill, SF - Senate File, SSB - Senate Study Bill)


    SF 2369 (formerly SF 2349 and SSB 3080) - Governor’s School Omnibus (M) - Included in this 20-page bill are provision that establish a student first scholarship program and a student first enrollment supplement fund; require the boards of directors of school districts to publish certain specified information regarding curriculum; as well as modifying provisions related to required social studies instruction, open enrollment, teacher librarian endorsements, competent private instruction, and special education.

    Approved by the Senate 31-18. Referred to House Appropriations


    SF 2195 (formerly SSB 3003) - Mental Health Professional Loan Program (F) - This bill establishes the mental health professional loan repayment program within the college student aid commission. The bill provides that the commission is to administer the mental health professional loan repayment program for purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in an eligible practice area.

    The bill limits the annual amount of loan repayment a mental health professional may receive to $8,000 for an eligible loan. The bill provides that the total loan repayments from the commission to a mental health professional shall not exceed $40,000.

    “Mental health professional” means a non prescribing individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including  psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling.

    On Senate debate calendar


    HF 2578 - Health and Human Services Appropriations (F) - Included in this 79-page bill is the requirement that the DHS to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to request the addition of functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. The Department will include functional family therapy and multisystemic therapy under the Medicaid program as covered services upon receipt of federal approval.  The bill also includes a $200,000 appropriation for the provision of this therapy;

    The bill also prohibits health carriers from excluding out-of-state health care professionals who provide services for mental health conditions, illnesses, injuries, or diseases from participating as providers via telehealth, under a policy, plan, or contract offered by the health carrier if the professional is licensed in Iowa,  is able to deliver health care services for mental health via telehealth and is able to satisfy the same criteria that the carrier uses to qualify in-state professionals, who hold the same license as the out-of-state professional, as providers.

    Also in the bill $7.4 million is appropriated for the reduction of the HCBS waiver waiting list for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

    Approved by the House 60-35. Referred to Senate Appropriations


    HF 2575 - Education Appropriations (F) - Included in this spending bill for fiscal year 2023 are two provisions of interest; 1) $1.5 M for the Mental Health Professional Loan Repayment Program; and 2) $3,183,936 for the continuation of the Children’s Mental Health School-Based Training and Support program

    Approved by the House 58-36.  Referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

     

    HF 2567 (formerly HF 2505 and HSB 702) - Mandatory Reporters/School Employee Investigations (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to develop and implement a process for the reporting and investigation of any incident that arises which may reasonably lead to the conclusion that a licensed practitioner employed by the board of directors of a school district or the authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school has violated any law. The bill establishes that the process requires the creation of a committee to investigate these incidents. The bill requires the committee to meet to evaluate the incident and determine whether the licensed practitioner should be placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

    Approved by the House 93-0. Senate subcommittee of Sinclair, Goodwin and Quirmbach


    HF 2554 (formerly HF 2553 and HF 2310) - Functional Family Therapy (M) - This bill requires the department of human services to submit a Medicaid state plan amendment to include functional family therapy (FFT) and multisystemic therapy (MST) for youth as covered services under the Medicaid program. Both FFT and MST are evidence-based treatments for youth that address a youth’s home and environment to reduce problematic behavior and divert the youth from the juvenile justice system. The language of this bill is also included in HF 2578.

    Passed the House 94-0.


    HF 2549 (formerly HF 2137 and HSB 537) - MH Professional Loan Repayment Program (F) - This bill establishes a mental health practitioner and mental health professional loan repayment program, and provides an appropriation. The bill requires the Iowa Student Aid Commission to establish a mental health practitioner loan repayment program for the purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health practitioners who agree to practice in service commitment areas for at least five years and meet the requirements of the program. “Mental health practitioner” means a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a mental health professional, a physician assistant practicing under the supervision of a psychiatrist, or a psychiatric advanced registered nurse practitioner. “Mental health professional” means an individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling. 

    Approved by the House 94-2. 


    HF 2398 (formerly HSB 656) - Doctors or Masters BOEE One Time Licenses and Non Public School Background Checks (M) - The bill allows the Board of Educational Examiners to have no renewal requirements for a practitioner who has been employed as a practitioner for at least ten years and has a master’s or doctoral degree. The bill also requires nonpublic schools to utilize the Iowa courts online system, sex offender registry and child abuse registry for employee background checks.

    Approved by House 99-0. On the Senate debate calendar.


    HF 2298 (formerly HF 2040) - Covid Vaccination Not Required For School (A) - This bill prohibits requiring an immunization against COVID-19 for a person to be enrolled in any licensed child care center, elementary or secondary school, or postsecondary school in Iowa prior to July 1, 2029, notwithstanding whether a person’s attendance is in person or virtual.

    Approved by the House 57-36. On the House debate calendar.



    Approved by both the House and Senate:


    HF 2416 (formerly HF 2309) - Athletic Participation (A) - The bill requires an college, junior college or interscholastic athletic team, sport,or athletic event that is sponsored or sanctioned by an accredited nonpublic school, school district, or athletic organization must be designated as females, women, or girls; males, men, or boys; or coeducational or mixed based on the sex at birth of the participating students. The bill also requires that only female students, based on their sex, may participate in any team, sport, or athletic event designated as being for females, women, or girls. The bill defines “sex” to mean a person’s biological sex as either female or male, and provides that the sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate or certificate issued upon adoption may be relied upon if the certificate was issued at or near the time of the student’s birth.

    Approved by the House 55-39. Approved by the Senate 31-17. Signed into law by the Governor.


    SF 2197 (formerly SF 168) - Non Public School Special Services (M) - The bill requires the Department of Education to convene and provide administrative support to the task force. The bill requires the task force to study and make recommendations regarding how to better serve students enrolled in nonpublic schools who receive special education services. The bill requires the task force to submit a report that includes findings and recommendations for policy changes to the General Assembly by December 1, 2022.

    Approved by the Senate 46-0. Approved by the House 94-0.


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