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SESSION ENDS AFTER 110 DAYS

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After 110 days of fighting over budgets, water quality, medical marijuana, tax breaks for baseball fields, Medicaid managed care, fireworks, and fantasy sports, the Iowa Legislature finished up its work on Friday, April 29.  The legislative session was only supposed to last 100 days, but given the tight budget and tough issues discussed this year, ten days late is pretty good timing.

It was a bit touch-and-go there in the final days.  Democratic legislators couldn't work on Saturday (district conventions were held throughout the state).  House Republicans were to lose votes if they went another week; rumor was that if they didn't finish up on April 29, it would be a full two weeks before they would have the votes to pass any bills.  Top that with the Capitol parking lots being overrun with Garth Brooks fans who were told to park at the Capitol to avoid traffic jams downtown.  It was all a sign that it was time to get out of town.

This issue reviews where we landed on some of the big topics that were addressed this year: medical marijuana, autism services, regional mental health and disability services funding, Medicaid managed care oversight, and of course budgets.  Congrats to all of you that took action this year, no matter how small the act.  In the words of Garth Brooks, "There ain't nobody in this world that's gonna do it for you, so do what you gotta do."

Here's to those of you that did.