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Greetings!  It has been a couple weeks since I’ve written, although it seems I often am repeating what you already have seen elsewhere.  But things are changing a little and we are on the path of opening our communities once again in a responsible way.  I am pleased more people will be able to see their doctors for screenings and care that were considered nonessential.  I’m happy people can begin socializing more and doing things to support their mental health.  We need human interaction to stay healthy in so many ways.

This will be brief.  There are a couple things of note.  The Legislature will be going back into session on June 3.  There will be many arrangements to comply with the Governor’s orders.  We will also live stream many committee meetings since they will be held primarily on the House and Senate floors.  It is important the government is transparent and yet as safe as possible.  I’m sure we will learn as we go, but we can do this.

As I watch the Federal government take action, I have not changed my support for NO state bailouts. Taxpayers in Iowa shouldn’t be forced to pay for the fiscal mismanagement of other poorly-run states. States like neighboring Illinois are constantly facing a budget deficit, running up debt, and increasing taxes. Meanwhile in Iowa, we have a healthy budget surplus, full reserve accounts, we have paid off state debts, and we have cut taxes for families and small business when able.  It is time to see how the dollars and programs already enacted are working.  I will continue to listen to the weekly White House briefings and other Zoom meetings for timely information.

If you haven’t requested your absentee ballot, you still have time to do so.  You can do this by downloading an absentee ballot request form and mailing it into your local County Auditor’s office (request forms must be received by the Auditor by May 22). Once the Auditor receives your request, they will mail your official voting ballot. Fill it out and return it as soon as possible to ensure it arrives on time and your vote is counted!

People who are among the most at risk may want to continue to stay home.  Everyone should continue the hygiene practices we all learned as children. I have a hair appointment, eye exam, and dental appointment rescheduled.  I’m excited to take some steps forward, and I look forward to heading back to our Capitol to finish our work.