Leader’s Column

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Inside the Iowa House: Vouchers On the Way?

By |2017-03-01T10:07:23-05:00March 1st, 2017|Categories: 2017 Session Information, Recent News|Tags: , , |

According to the special interests running the show for Republicans at the State Capitol these days, the next priority of the Iowa Legislature will be vouchers that siphon funding from public schools and give it to home schools and private schools. They convinced a Republican Senator to introduce their bill and it may get a hearing [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 7-6-15

By |2015-07-27T10:20:47-05:00July 6th, 2015|Categories: Recent News|Tags: , , , , , |

Just before the July 4th holiday, Governor Branstad sent Iowa schools scrambling when he vetoed $56 million in urgently needed funding. It’s just the latest gut punch to K-12 schools and educators from Republicans at the State Capitol. First, they were forced to wait for over a year and a half to find out how much [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 4-21-15

By |2015-04-21T16:02:04-05:00April 21st, 2015|Categories: 2015 Session Information, Recent News|Tags: , , , , , |

Despite our efforts to compromise, the school funding crisis hit another unfortunate milestone this week as schools were forced to set their budget for the upcoming school year without knowing how much money they will get from the state. Iowans are just beginning to learn about the devastating results of the legislative stalemate from pink slips [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 2-4-15

By |2015-02-05T09:31:55-05:00February 5th, 2015|Categories: Recent News|Tags: , , , , |

    One of the keys to building a strong middle class is providing more economic security to working families. Right now, there are over 306,000 Iowans earning the minimum wage who have not had a raise in nearly eight years. Over the last 30 years, the minimum wage has failed to keep up with the [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 11-15-15

By |2015-01-16T11:24:59-05:00January 16th, 2015|Categories: Recent News|Tags: , , , , |

    The 2015 Iowa Legislature kicked off the 110 day session on Monday this week.   As the leader of House Democrats, I’m proud to lead the most diverse caucus under the golden dome this year that is a true reflection of the people of Iowa.  We have five minority members and a record 49% [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 10-24-14

By |2014-10-24T13:57:08-05:00October 24th, 2014|Categories: Recent News|Tags: , , , , , |

    Over the last 50 years, many rural communities have experienced a significant decline in population.  We all must work together to re-populate rural Iowa and capitalize on the strengths of rural communities to create good jobs and improve the quality of life.  In 2012, Iowa conducted a survey about internet access and the availability [...]

House Leader Mark Smith: Inside the Iowa House, 10-8-14

By |2014-10-09T11:31:38-05:00October 9th, 2014|Categories: Recent News|Tags: , , , , , , |

Last month, Iowa House Democrats across the state outlined our agenda to grow Iowa’s middle class and re-vitalize rural Iowa. Our plan focuses on five major areas – boosting the middle class; building Iowa’s skilled workforce; re-vitalizing rural Iowa; preserving Iowa’s land and water; and protecting seniors, vulnerable Iowans and children. We are ready to work [...]

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