No Change From Last Week:
Property Tax Reform
HSB 165 status: Passed by House Ways and Means Subcommittee
The best way to provide long-term property tax relief is to control the growth of government at the local level and establish a strong truth in taxation measure.READ MORE
Spending Limitation Amendment
SJR 20 status: Placed on Senate Appropriations calendar
This resolution proposes an amendment to the Iowa Constitution to require that the state only spend 99 percent of the revenue received each year. Senator Charles Schneider said about the amendment, “I believe it is important to Iowa’s fiscal health. If adopted, the amendment ensures Iowa spends fewer tax dollars than it takes in, while maintaining the flexibility that state government needs to respond to emergencies like natural disasters, floods, animal disease outbreaks, or a farm crisis.” READ MORE
Super-Majority for Tax Increase Amendment
SJR 16 status: Passed by Senate Ways and Means Subcommittee
If lawmakers decide that more money is needed from the incomes of families and businesses across the state, it is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Requiring a two-thirds majority vote by the legislature to raise income taxes is a commonsense protection that puts taxpayers before the noisy special interests that are constantly asking for a bigger piece of their paychecks.
Elimination of the Inheritance Tax
SF 307 status: Placed on Senate Ways and Means calendar
HF 438 status: Referred to House Ways and Means Committee
These bills would completely eliminate the inheritance tax. The inheritance tax in Iowa can require up to a 15% tax on asset transfer if the recipient of a given asset is not a lineal relation of the benefactor. If a deceased person does not have children or chooses to leave their assets to a non-lineal relation, this can create a scenario where the beneficiary does not have the liquid assets to pay the inheritance tax. This could result in the sale of a small business or family farm. This is not the outcome tax policy should strive to achieve.
Federal Funds Inventory
HSB 205 status: Assigned to a House Appropriations Subcommittee
The State of Iowa received $8.5 billion from the federal government in 2017, an amount that eclipses our current state budget of $7.5 billion. Roughly half of the money flowing through Iowa isn’t even funded with state income or sales tax; it’s funded with federal money that often comes with strings attached. The bill would require identifying a potential or foreseeable end date for each federal grant. This would allow our state to understand and plan for the time when each set of federal dollars may no longer be coming to Iowa. READ MORE
Taxpayer Funded Lobbyists
SF 573 status: Introduced, placed on calendar
Taxpayer dollars should not be used for lobbying, and the Iowa Legislature should promptly prohibit lobbying and ballot-issue activity by any organization that receives taxpayer dollars. While it is argued that lobbying is a form of free speech protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution, those rights are for citizens and not government itself.