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Last week the Iowa House released a major piece of legislation that deals with firearms and the possession of them.  The biggest piece of this legislation that I have been asked to accomplish since I have been a legislator is the ability to carry a weapon without a permit.  In addition, this bill reduces requirements and allows possession and carrying of weapons in a freer manner.  In short, as I have been very consistent in my Constitutional message, this bill returns your valuable 2nd Amendment Rights to you in many ways.

The omnibus also permits the following: 

  • EMT’s who work with law enforcement a professional carry permit.
  • Law enforcement officers and reserve officers can carry on school grounds whether they are acting in their official duties.
  • Prohibits landlords of government-assisted housing from banning firearms.
  • Allows permits to acquire to be issued with a validity of 5 years instead of one.
  • Allows target shooting on private property without penalties.
  • Provides penalties for fraudulent purchases of firearms or ammunition.
  • Prohibits the Governor or any political subdivision from revoking the right of firearm ownership or possession due to a state of emergency.

There are other provisions, but these are the provisions that will be most talked about and discussed over the coming period while this bill is being discussed.  The gun omnibus bill is the result of many people talking with Iowans during campaigns (going door to door), forums and meetings, and individual one-on-one meetings.  I am incredibly proud of this bill because it answers so many of the concerns that my constituents have regarding the 2nd Amendment and gun ownership.

Funnel Week Passes with Many Bills Not Making the Cut

On Friday, March 5, the Iowa Legislature met the first deadline of the year regarding legislation that it passes and moves forward to continue to be eligible for the rest of the year.  This has been a different year than years past in that many bills are being debated as they become eligible.  That has taken tremendous pressure off the funnel week.

What funnel week means is that where there were around 800 bills “floating” around the capitol after that date, the number is cut to around 200 bills.  The funnel really gives an added importance to the priorities of the legislators in the Capitol.  The bills that are cut are dead, but as anyone here in the Capitol can tell you that most bills are never totally dead.  They can come back in the form of amendments and changes to other bills.

Ames School District to Testify about BLM Curriculum on March 9th

Finally, the Ames School District was set to testify in front of the House Government Oversight Committee 2 weeks ago, until they sought to be represented by a lawyer and asked for more time to prepare for the meeting.  That re-scheduled meeting is now set for March 9th and information to connect to the meeting will be found at Iowa Legislature if you wish to view the testimony online as we get closer to that date.

It is most interesting that the Ames School District found the need to be represented by lawyers for this curriculum when they would not listen to parents who wanted to have the school board reconsider their decision to have the curriculum taught.

I appreciate your thoughts and feelings on all the bills and things that we do here in Des Moines.  I often say the seat I sit in is House District 1’s seat, I am just blessed to be able to sit in it and represent the great people of that district.  Thank you for your faith in me and for granting me the right to bring your values to the concrete of Des Moines.

Author: John Wills