New Senate Human Resources Committee Chair
Iowa Senate Republicans announced a new Chair of the Senate Human Resources Committee, which addresses issues like disability services, health care,... Read More...
Deadline to Request Satellite Democratic Caucus Locations is November 18
The Iowa Caucuses will be held on Monday night, February 3, 2020.  Democrats can find their neighborhood caucus locations, candidate contacts, and... Read More...
2020 Caucus Guide Available
Our 2020 Guide to the Iowa Caucuses is now available!  Read More...
Miller-Meeks Enters Congressional Race
First term State Senator Marianette Miller-Meeks announced today that she'll run for Congress in Iowa's Second Congressional District.  US Rep. Dave... Read More...
New Caucus Resources Available
We are in the process of developing our new 2020 Guide to the Iowa Caucuses. Because there are some decisions still being made on the Democratic side,... Read More...

Our Network


More articles »

A complete list of the bills introduced to date, with status updated daily, can be found on the infoNET Bill Tracker

2015 Bills.  Bills that didn't pass last year are alive again this year.  Some of interest include:

  • HF 510 MH/SA Transportation Contracts:  Allows a county or mental health/disability services (MH/DS) region to contract with a private company to transport people with substance use disorders or mental illness to a hospital or facility (where they have been involuntarily or voluntarily committed).   The private company is required to make arrangements for transfer to a different facility if the facility or hospital determines better treatment would be given at another location.  The bill provides details for the contracts, and requirements for security and safety.  Requiers the Department of Public Health and Department of Human Services work with stakeholders (counties, law enforcement, sheriffs, regions) to develop rules. Status: Senate Human Resources Committee
  • HF 588 - Removable Disability Parking Placards: Current law allows individuals with disabilities to get a removable windshield parking placard that does not expire.  Unfortunately, there has been reported misuse of these placards, as they are not always returned upon the person's death.  To address this, legislators proposed this bill that will eliminate these non-expiring placards, and replace them with a placard that expires every five years.  The placard can be renewed as many times as needed.  The bill also requires the  removable windshield placard be displayed in a manner that allows the entire placard to be visible through the vehicle’s windshield. Applies to new placards issued after January 1, 2016.  Status: Senate Transportation Committee
  • SF 509 ADA Compliance/Gas Stations: Requires gas stations to comply with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act. Requires any new or renovated fuel pumps constructed after this bill becomes law offer refueling assistance for Iowans with disabilities, including the posting of signs and the use of a refueling assistance device that allows a driver with a disability to notify employees that they need assistance (device must be able to be operated by the individual’s closed fist or other method that does not require manual operation). Gives a $500 income tax credit to small businesses to help pay for the cost of making these changes. The tax credit is not refundable but may be used over several tax years.  Changes must be made by January 1, 2016; tax credit effective January 1, 2016; the rest of the bill is effective upon enactment. Status: House Ways & Means Committee 

2016 Bills.  The following bills of interest have been introduced during the first two weeks of sesson:

  • HF 2039 - Disclosure of Mental Health Information: Requires a health care provider who is caring for or treating an adult to tell that person’s immediate family member about the involuntary civil commitment process, if that person is likely to seriously physically injure his/herself or attempt suicide, and only if asked to do so by the immediate family member.  Health care providers who disclose this information cannot face civil or criminal actions for that disclosure. Status: House Human Resources Committee
  • HF 2040 - Mental Health Advocate Duties: States that a mental health advocate shall have exclusive control over the performance of the advocate’s duties. Guidelines and best practices for the performance of the advocate’s duties are to be developed by the Judicial Council, and adopted by the state Mental Health and Disability Services Commission. Status: House Human Resources Committee
  • HSB 533 - Supported Employment Reimbursement Rates: Increases reimbursement rates for Medicaid supported employement providers by 20% over the rates in effect on June 30, 2015. The Governor signed a 20% increase into law last year, the funds were appropriated ($750,000) but the Department of Human Services has failed to implement the increase.  This bill again directs that increase, and makes it effective back to the start of the fiscal year (July 1, 2015). 
  • SSB 3044 - Athletic Trainers at High School Sporting Events: Requires the home team at certain high school sporting events (football, soccer, wrestling, hockey, or lacrosse) to have a licensed athletic trainer present and available to assess athletic injuries. Requires an athletic trainer to notify the visiting team’s athletic director within 48 hours after the contest occurs if a visiting team's athlete shows signs, symptoms, or behaviors consistent with a concussion or brain injury. Status: Senate Education Committee