Washington Evening Journal
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Washington, IA 52353
The Dickey Dispatch
By State Sen. Adrian Dickey
Mar. 2, 2023 9:39 am
Hello Senate District 44,
Week six was GREAT! From a multitude of groups visiting the Capitol to getting legislation passed in my committees and seeing the Senate come together to pass quality bills, it turned out to be a very exciting and productive week. On Tuesday, both the University of Northern Iowa and the Iowa Motor Truck Association (IMTA) were welcomed to the Capitol. Now obviously with my involvement in the trucking industry, serving as the chairman of the Iowa Motor Truck Association, AND by graduating from UNI, I was as happy as could be with these groups visiting!
IMTA provided us with a great breakfast, information on trucking in Iowa, and voiced their concerns on legislation pertaining to commercial motor vehicles. I am a very strong proponent of the trucking industry and realize how vital it is to our state and national economy. I think it was a wonderful event and hopefully helped others understand how much Iowans rely on trucking. The trucking industry is the 2nd largest industry for employment in Iowa, with one out of every 13 paychecks related to trucking. Being part of Dickey Transport for over 30 years, I fully understand the issues facing the trucking industry. Besides speaking with truckers, it was exciting to be able to speak with current students from UNI and hear some of their perspectives on current issues facing Iowans. In addition to current UNI students being in attendance, UNI professors, staff, and alumni, such as yours truly, filled the Capitol wearing their purple panther pride! I was thoroughly impressed with UNI when I attended back in the early 90s, and am still impressed with the quality of students they produce to this day. Tuesday was a GREAT day!
This week there was also more floor debate. Senate file 75 was passed, which created a new license for hospitals, called rural emergency hospitals (REH). A REH is a facility that will provide rural emergency health services 24/7, but will not provide any inpatient acute care. Being designated as such will help stabilize rural hospitals that may be struggling and bring in more money through Medicaid. Rural healthcare access is a major concern that I hear about, and this bill will help keep rural hospitals open and ensure Iowans have access to vital health care services. It was nice to see the whole Senate come together and pass this bill 48-0.
On another note, SSB 1124 passed out of subcommittee this week. This bill deals with property tax reform. With Iowa ranking 40th in the nation by the cost of property taxes, something needed to be done. Iowans have expressed their concerns with the continuous raising of property taxes and want something done to prevent them from rising even further. Property tax collections have risen 145% since 2000, while the median Iowa household income has only grown by 44% over the same time period. The vast majority of emails that I receive are from individuals demanding property tax reduction.
This bill works by simplifying and consolidating around 20 different levies. It also eliminates two levies because other streams of revenue already exist for those services. The reforms found in this bill require local governments to be transparent about where your tax dollar goes, and enforces spending constraints. There was no shortage of city managers and county supervisors in the Capitol this week wanting to keep more of YOUR money (paid through property taxes). However I fully intend to keep my promise to advocate for you, the taxpayer, so you can keep more of your money.
As always, thank you all for the continued support. You can always reach out to me with any questions or concerns you may have.
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