Bob Kressig Newsletter January 12, 2023

Bob Kressig Newsletter
Greetings to you all,

The 90th General Assembly began this past Monday, at the Iowa State Capital. The first week consisted of speeches from the Governor, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and the Iowa National Guard. The Governor is promoting her school vouchers bill that has significant opposition. The Chief Justice talked about a shortage of attorneys in the state and Major General Benjamin Corell, of the National Guard, talked about there being a shortage of recruits to serve in the National Guard.

The committees that I serve on are Transportation, Environmental Protection, Commerce, and Public Safety. We had our first meetings this week. Next week will be spent on subcommittees and full committee meetings.

In the Statehouse Newsletter, you will find information about:

  • Preparing for the 2023 Legislative Session.
  • Private School Vouchers Getting Fast-Tracked Through Legislature.
  • Governor’s Condition of the State Leaves Out Every Day Iowans.
  • Recognizing Public Safety Personnel.

Please share your comments with me.

Going forward, I will be listening and working closely with local leaders and community members, to make sure the state is partnering with those in our community who need help and assistance. I’m available by email, phone, and social media, to answer questions and listen to your concerns. You can always reach me by email or call me at home at 319-266-9021. We can also stay connected through social media, including FacebookTwitter, and YouTube. I appreciate hearing from you and I thank you for your continued support.

Thank you for taking the time to read the Statehouse News. Please keep in touch!


Upcoming Community Events

Jan 13 UNI Swim/Dive vs Illinois State Glen Henry Pool, 5pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 13-15 The Pinballs Waterloo Community Playhouse, Fri 7pm, Sat – Sun 2pm, 319-291-4494

Jan18 UNI Men’s Basketball vs Illinois State McLeod Center, 7pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 19 UNI Women’s Basketball vs Valparaiso McLeod Center, 6pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 20 UNI Mens & Women’s Track Jack Jennett Open UNI-Dome, 10am, 319-273-4849

Jan 20-21 The Pinballs Waterloo Community Playhouse, Fri 7pm, Sat 2pm, 319-291-4494

Jan 21 Iowa Games Fat Bike Race George Wyth Lodge, 1pm, 319-266-5979

Jan 21 UNI Women’s Basketball vs University of Illinois Chicago McLeod Center, 2pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 21 Jazz at the Black Hawk: Bob Washut & Mike Conrad Black Hawk Hotel, 7:30pm, 319-277-1161

Jan 25 UNI Men’s Basketball vs Valparaiso McLeod Center, 7pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 27-29 Iowa Boat, RV & Vacation Show UNI-Dome, Fri 3pm, Sat & Sun 10am, 319-290-1996

Jan 28 UNI Wrestling vs Oklahoma State McLeod Center, 7pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 29 Double Whammy Iowa Games & UNAA Ninja Warrior Competition Ninja\U, 8am, 319-224-0836

Jan 29 UNI Wrestling vs Oklahoma McLeod Center, 2pm, 319-273-4849

Jan 29 Classic Albums Live: Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon GBPAC, 7pm, 319-273-7469

2023 Legislative Session Begins; Lawmakers Want to Hear from Iowans 

On Monday, lawmakers opened the 2023 session of the Iowa Legislature, welcoming 39 new members to the Iowa House, and listened to the priorities of both legislative leaders.

Democratic lawmakers acknowledged that Iowans are tired of politics as usual and vowed to listen to Iowans. While there may not be agreement on every issue, their goal this session is to keep focused on people, not politics.Some of the ideas Democratic lawmakers will be working on this session that have overwhelming support from Iowans include:

  • Lowering costs for Iowans
  • Investing in public schools
  • Protecting reproductive freedom
  • Legalizing marijuana

The 2023 session is expected to end on April 28. Iowans can log on to legis.iowa.gov to watch livestreams of legislative action, including committee meetings and debate.

Lawmakers Want to Hear from You
Lawmakers are asking Iowans to take a brief survey to tell them what’s important to you and your family. Please consider taking the survey below.

If you don’t have time to fill out the survey but want to stay connected please feel free to use the contact information provided below.


Public Hearing: Private School Vouchers Getting Fast-Tracked Through Legislature

Although a majority of Iowans oppose diverting millions of dollars from our local public schools to private schools, Governor Kim Reynolds and Republican lawmakers are expediting a bill that would do just that.

While the bill was just released and we’re still reviewing the full impact it would have on Iowa kids, we remain firm in our belief that public money belongs in public schools.

Here’s the latest information on vouchers:

  • 75% of public schools are in rural areas with no access to private schools, leaving out too many Iowa kids.
  • Private school vouchers don’t benefit every Iowa kid equally. Public schools accept all kids – no matter their zip code, while private schools are allowed to pick and choose which kids they accept.
  • 126 rural schools have already closed in Iowa, and diverting money from public schools to private schools will only force more closures.
  • Millionaires in Des Moines would get $100,000 of our tax dollars to send their kids to private school.

Instead of siphoning off critical funding for our kids, lawmakers should be investing in our public schools and in all students by:

  • Reducing class sizes and making preschool an increased option for all parents.
  • Recruiting and keeping more great teachers in our classrooms by treating them with respect and paying them what they’re worth.
  • Expanding STEM and technical education options that prepare students for immediate

Public Hearing on School Vouchers on January 17

Get ready to fight for Iowa’s public schools! A legislative public hearing in the Iowa House will be held on Tuesday, January 17 at 5pm at the State Capitol. Share your thoughts, sign up to speak, leave a comment, or watch live at: legis.iowa.gov/committees/publicHearings. Find our event on Facebook at: fb.me/e/2fYTbmIqt.


Governor’s Condition of the State Leaves Out Every Day Iowans

Governor Kim Reynolds delivered her sixth Condition of the State address to the Iowa Legislature on Tuesday. The speech is typically an update on our state’s health and functions as a rollout of the Governor’s agenda for the legislative session.

Instead of bringing Iowans together and focusing on people, the Governor pushed partisan politics and encouraged lawmakers to pass bills that Iowans overwhelmingly oppose.  Some of the bills she outlined would use school vouchers to shift money from public schools to private schools and ban abortion without any exceptions for rape or health of the mother.

Lawmakers are just starting to review the budget and other policy proposals the Governor sent to the Iowa Legislature on Tuesday.


Recognizing Public Safety Personnel

This week, Iowans across the state showed appreciation for their state and local public safety personnel on National Law Enforcement Day, which is held annually on January 9th. Originally, the day was established to thank and support public safety workers for their dedication to keep local communities safe.

After the tragic deaths of Iowa state troopers, a correctional officer and a nurse killed in the line of duty, Iowa House Democrats have advocated for more to be done to keep front-line public safety individuals safe by supporting legislation that:

  • Expands support for public safety personnel injured on a job.
  • Keeps public safety workers and their families safe by protecting their personal information.
  • Gives public safety workers a say in their own workplace safety.
  • Provides more safety training for law enforcement and public safety workers.
  • Collects data on all traffic, bicycle, and pedestrian stops by law enforcement to address inequities and build on the historic Plan for a More Perfect Union legislation.
  • Fills all positions — including those the majority party drastically cut over the last decade — by fully funding the Department of Public safety, and the Department of Corrections.

Over the last several years, the Governor and Republican lawmakers have cut $10 million from public safety and the consequences have been deadly. During 2017, Iowa Republican lawmakers stripped away dedicated public servants’ rights to bargain for their own workplace safety and cut $5.5 million from the law enforcement budget. Governor Branstad’s initial proposal cut the budget by $15 million.

Iowa House Democrats have always, and will continue, to fight for keeping communities safe while protecting those dedicated public servants on the front-lines every day, including correctional officers, firefighters, and first responders.


More Iowa News

PRESIDENT BIDEN’S STUDENT LOAN DEBT RELIEF GOES BEFORE THE SUPREME COURT: The United States Supreme Court agreed to hear a second appeal concerning the Administration’s student debt relief plan, meaning it will hear two cases on the program in February. The U.S. Department of Education extended the pause on student loan repayment, interest, and collections while the Court reviews the plan. Payments would resume 60 days after the agency is permitted to implement the program or the litigation is resolved, giving the Court an opportunity to resolve the case during its current term. If the program has not been implemented and the litigation has not been resolved by June 30, 2023, payments would resume 60 days after that. Learn more at: studentaid.gov/debt-relief-announcement.

REAL ID DEADLINE EXTENDED AGAIN: The deadline for the REAL ID implementation has been pushed back to May 7, 2025. All travelers wanting to use their state issued ID or driver’s license to board a domestic flight will need a REAL ID compliant license or ID.  A REAL ID will also be needed to enter federal buildings. In Iowa all REAL ID licenses and IDs have a star surrounded by a gold circle in the upper-righthand corner. In order to receive a REAL ID, you must provide documents that prove your identity, social security number, two proofs of Iowa residency, and proof of legal name changes if your name is different from the name on your identity document. The DOT is encouraging anyone who hasn’t received a REAL ID to get one. To receive a personalized list of the documents you will need visit, iowadot.gov/mvd/realid/success.aspx.

TIPS TO STAY SAFE WHILE ICE FISHING IN IOWA: While it is winter in Iowa, some parts of the state have seen warmer than usual temperatures. Due to the unusually warm and changing temperatures, not all ice on Iowa’s waterways is safe to walk on. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) encourages people to enjoy the outdoors, but is providing the following ice safety tips: 1. Wait until ice is at least four inches before walking on it. 2. New ice is usually stronger than old ice. 3. Avoid off-colored snow or ice, it is usually a sign of weakness. 4. The insulating effect of snow slows down the freezing process. For more information, safety tips, find a class on ice fishing, or to get your fishing license, visit: iowadnr.gov/fishing.