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CALL TO ACTION: Contact Congress
Republicans now have a plan for the next COVID-19 assistance package. It is very different from the plan from the Democrats. Congress and the White... Read More...
ACTION ALERT: Congressional COVID Relief Needs Disability Focus
Senate Republicans continued to hammer out the details of a fourth COVID-19 relief package, which Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) has... Read More...
Iowans with Disabilities Face Danger, Isolation During COVID-19
The Des Moines Register featured a great article on the challenges Iowans with disabilities face during the COVID-19 outbreak.  Titled "Iowans with... Read More...
Governor Finishes Signing 2020 Bills into Law
Governor Kim Reynolds finished signing the 113 bills sent to her during this year's legislative session.  She line-item vetoed the budget bill,... Read More...
DD Council Ask Governor to Veto Changes to Voting by Mail
The Iowa Legislative Session finsihed its work on June 14; our next issue of infoNET will be published after the Govenror takes action on the 113... Read More...

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We track any bills that may have an impact on the lives of people with disabilities, their family members, their communities, and their service providers.  You can always find a full list of these bills and their current status in our Bill Tracker.  We update this list daily, sometimes several times a day.  So bookmark our Bill Tracker, watch for issues that interest you, and take action on those issues using our online Grassroots Advocacy Center!

The following bills were introduced in the first two weeks of the legislative session.  You can look at all the bills introduced to date here.

  • HSB39 - Governor's Anti-Bullying Bill - Requires all school districts provide training on how to investigate bullying incidents in schools. School districts are only required to provide this training to at least one employee per year. The Department of Education is required to establish a student mentoring pilot program with best practices for bullying and violence prevention among middle and high school students. The bill also expands the definition of bullying to include social media and social networking websites, and broadens the definitions of bullying; and harassment to capture more incidents. School anti-harassment and anti-bullying policies would need to require prompt notification of parents/guardians of all students involved in a reported incident (exceptions to the notification policy are made if the target of the bullying believes notification would subject the child to rejection, abuse or neglect related to actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression). The bill outlines certain conditions in which school officials can be granted authority to investigate and enforce school discipline even if the alleged incidents occurred off school grounds/ outside of school functions. The bill also allows kids that are bullied to change schools (open enrollment) and immediately participate in sports (right now there is a 90-day waiting period before an open enrolled child can play sports). The bill appropriates $150,000 for the next fiscal year (FY16) for training programs and $50,000 for the student mentoring pilot program.  Companion bill is SSB 1044(Status: House Education Committee) 

  • SF3 - Drivers' Education/Rights of Persons with Disabilities - Requires that approved drivers education classes include classroom instruction on the rights, privileges, and penalties of parking for persons with disabilities. (Status: Senate Transportation Committee)

  • SF22 - Service Dog Abuse - Makes it a crime to abuse a service dog - up to $6,250 in fines and up to two years in jail. Service dog abuse includes owning/having a dog that attacks a service dog (but this does not include incidents that occur when a person owns both dogs or if the service dog was not under control of its owner/handler or if the service dog is behaving aggressively. (Status: Senate Judiciary Committee)

  • SSB1082 – Accessible Parking/Penalties for Improper Use Changes the penalties for improper use of an accessible parking permit (called in law “persons with disabilities parking permit”).  Under current law, this is a simple misdemeanor and is subject to a $200 fine.  This bill allows a city to bypass this and charge and collect a $100 fine. (Status: Senate Judiciary Committee)