WEEKLY BILL TRACKING

Thurs. Mar. 5 – Wed. Mar. 11, 2015

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC RESEARCH STAFF

 

Agriculture

HF 574         E-15 infrastructure expansion. Expands the renewable fuel infrastructure program by allowing infrastructure that supports E-15 blended gasoline (passed Committee 22-0) to House Calendar.

HF 575         Department of Agriculture Code Cleanup. Strikes outdated and unused provisions for code sections pertaining to the Department of Agriculture (passed Committee 22-0) to House Calendar.

HF 578         Observation of Investigation. An owner of a property can not be prohibited from observing an investigation and taking pictures on their own property (passed 21-0) to House Calendar.

HF 583         Effluent from Animal Truck Was Facilities. Shifts the livestock truck washes into from commercial wash to the animal feeding operations code section (passed Committee 21-0) to House Calendar.

HF 586         Public Record for Manure Management Plans and Biosecurity. Directs the Department of Natural Resources to note if persons failure to comply with filing a manure management plan was due to an mistake or oversights. Allows a county to opt of having to keep manure management plans on file. Additionally, allows the manager or owner of an animal feeding operation to evict inspectors if the owner or manager alleges they are violating biosecurity requirements. (passed Committee 20-2) to House Calendar.

 

Appropriations

HF 400         Manufactured Housing Program Fund. Creates a manufactured housing program fund within the Iowa Finance Authority that would be available to the Authority to provide assistance for this type of housing. (passed Committee 24-1) to House Calendar

SF 323         Lottery Funds to Veterans Trust Fund. Repeals the requirement of the Iowa Lottery to provide a limited series of lottery games to benefit the Veterans Trust Fund, and establishes a $2.5 million annual transfer from Iowa Lottery to the Iowa Veterans Trust Fund until it reaches $50 million.  Once the trust fund is filled, the funds will then be distributed to each county with 50% distributed equally to each county and 50% distributed on the population of veterans in the county.  The bill maintains the commitment of the lottery funds, should gaming revenues not be sufficient to repay bonds for Vision Iowa.  (passed House 94-5) to Governor

 

Commerce

HF 229         Regulations Regarding Buying Clubs and Free Trial Offers. Exempts the sales of buying club memberships through the internet from current regulations regarding notifications of cancellations, which is part of our consumer protection law, and adds language to the consumer fraud law regarding free-trial offers. (passed House 59-40) to Senate Commerce Committee

HF 308         Private Employer Alcohol Testing. Changes the minimum alcohol content level allowed from .04 to .02 for private employers. (passed House 95-4) to Senate Labor Committee

HF 556         Cell Tower Siting. Establishes rules and regulations that governmental authorities must follow regarding applications for new or to modify existing wireless communications facilities. (passed Committee 22-1) to House Ways & Means Committee

HSB 121      Electric Transmission Facilities. Puts electric transmission facilities under the definition of public utility. (passed Committee 23-0) to House Calendar

HSB 138      Pay Day Lenders – Extended Repayment Option. Allows for customers of pay day lenders to request to enter into an extended repayment plan if the customer knows that they will not be able to pay back the original loan. (passed Committee 19-4) to House Calendar

 

Education

HF228     TransitionalCoachingProgram.CreatesanewtransitionalcoachingauthorizationundertheBoardofEducationalExaminers.Totakepartintheprogram,atransitionalcoachwouldhavetofirstpassaconcussiontrainingcoursewhichisrequiredbytheIowaAthleticAssociationbeforeanyonecancoach,beatleast21yearsofage,provideverificationofanofferofacoachingpositionbyaschooloraconsortiumofschools,andcompletethecourseworkrequiredforafullcoachingauthorizationwithin1year.Personswiththisauthorizationaresubjecttothedefinitionofschoolemployeeregardingthelawonsexualexploitationbyacounselor,therapistorschoolthatwaspassedlastyear.(passedHouse 81-18)toSenate Education Committee

HF 282         BOEE Access to Iowa Courts On-line. Adds the Iowa Courts on-line data base as a required background check for licensed teachers that are up for renewal. This matches the current requirements for background checks for non-licensed school employees, which require the sex offender registry, child abuse registry, and Iowa Courts on-line. The Board of Education Examiners would review these data bases, and could deny someone a license if an offense was found that a licensed teacher could lose their license for. (passed House 99-0) to Senate Education Committee

HF 445         Psychiatric Hospitals Cost of Educational Services. Clarifies that the funding follows the student from their local school district to a private institution providing psychiatric care. Currently, the funding would come from the school district where the institution is located. There is an exemption to this for special education, a child placed by the department of human services or court day program, or if the district of residence determines that the child may inflict self-harm. The bill allows the sending district to use supplementary weighting or dropout prevention funds to help cover the cost of the student. (passed House 99-0) to Senate Education

HF 554         Teacher Mentoring Funds Eliminated if a TLC Grant Provided. If a district receives a Teacher Leadership Compensation (TLC) grant, then they cannot receive teacher mentoring money. Currently this program provides mentoring for beginning teachers and is funded at $2.3 million. Over 200 school districts would not be affected by this next year since they do not receive TLC grant. (passed Committee 13-10) to House Appropriations Committee

HF 559         GED Tests. Allows someone the ability to take the GED test if they receive a waiver from the 18 years of age requirement from the Department of Education if it is determined to be in the best interest of the child. (passed Committee 23-0) to House Calendar

HF 568         CPR and Defibrillator Training. Requires that coaches and applicants for a coaching authorization or coaching endorsement possess a valid CPR and AED certification from a nationally recognized course. Current teaching license with a coaching endorsement or a coaching authorization would have until July 1, 2016, to meet these requirements. (passed Committee 23-0) to House Calendar

 

Environmental Protection

HF 266         Yard Waste in Landfills. Allows yard waste to be disposed in a sanitary landfill if the landfill operates a methane collection system that produces energy. (passed House 93-6) to Senate Calendar

 

Human Resources

HF 247         Medicaid – Asset Verification. The Department of Human Services is required to issue a request for proposals (RFP) to contract with a third-party vendor to establish an electronic asset, income, and identity eligibility verification system for the purposes of determining or re-determining the eligibility of an individual who is an applicant for or recipient of Medicaid if they are elderly, blind, or disabled.(passed House 74-25) to Senate Human Resources Committee

HF 381         Iowa Health Information Network. Control of the Iowa Health Information Network (IHIN) is moved from a public entity to a non-profit.  A new code chapter is created, but most of the current language from IHIN’s 2012 establishment is maintained.  An RFP process is established to find the appropriate non-profit to take control of the IHIN. (passed House 98-1) to Senate Human Resource Committee

HF 448         Confidential Communication – EMS. Allows for emergency medical service providers to communicate confidentially with a patient, similar to how a physician can do so now in the provider’s professional capacity. (passed House 99-0) to Senate Human Resource Committee

HF 468         Mental Health Advocates. Requires each county to have an independent mental health advocate and the advocate must be an employee of a county.  Counties can share advocates as well. (passed House 93-2) to Senate Human Resources Committee

HF 573         Abortion Pre-requisites. Requires a physician to certify that the woman is given the opportunity to view and hear certain images and sounds prior to receiving an abortion (passed Committee 11-9) to House Calendar

HF 581         Licensure of Acupuncturists. Updates the Iowa Code relating to the licensure of acupuncturists. (passed committee 20-0) to House Calendar

 

Judiciary

HF 159         Guardianship and Conservatorship Combined Petition. Considers a combined petition for a conservatorship and guardianship as one proceeding with one docket number. (signed, effective 7-1-15)

HF 161         Non-Familial Housing Restrictions. Prohibits a city from adopting or enforcing any regulation or restriction on residential rental property based on familiar or non-familial relationships. (passed House 73-26) to Senate Judiciary Committee

HF 194         Statute of Repose. Reduces the statute of repose for nonresidential construction from 15 years to 10 years. (passed House 60-39) to Senate Judiciary Committee

HF 258         Sexual Misconduct with Offenders by Peace Officers. Expands the definition of sexual misconduct with offenders and juveniles to specifically include peace officers (passed House 99-0) to Senate Judiciary Committee

HF 259         Workers’ Compensation Exclusions. Allows a proprietor, LLC member or partner, or a partner to not purchase workers’ compensation coverage and requires a nonelection of coverage to be attached to the workers’ compensation liability policy or filed with the workers’ compensation commissioner. (passed House 99-0) to Senate Labor and Business Relations Committee

HF 260         District Judge Nominees Out of District. Allows a district judicial nominee to be a resident of the state, and the nominee would have to be a resident of that judicial district when appointed. (passed House 59-40) to Senate Judiciary Committee

HF 261         Smokeless Powder. Increases the amount of smokeless powder from 25 pounds to 100 pounds before the power is regulated as an explosive material. (passed House 86-13) to Senate Judiciary Committee

HF 286         Direct Deposit of Wages. Allows employers to require employees that were hired before 2005 to be paid by direct deposit. (passed House 57-42) to Senate Labor and Business Relations Committee

HF 287         Counterfeit Airbags. Creates a new crime for installing, manufacturing, importing or selling a counterfeit air bag for a vehicle. (passed House 99-0) to Senate Transportation Committee

HF 496         Military Victim Advocates. Extends protections for victim counselors that are not required to give evidence in a civil or criminal proceeding to military victim advocates. (passed House 95-0) to Senate

HSB 201      Firearms Omnibus. Changes several provisions related to firearms, including allowing the possession of firearms suppressors, allowing a minor to possess handgun, and provisions related to a permit to carry a firearm. (passed House 75-24) to Senate Calendar

SF 150         Sexually Violent Predator Escape Penalty Increased. Increases the penalty for a sexually violent predator that escapes or attempts to escape custody from a simple misdemeanor to a serious misdemeanor. (passed House 87-12) to Governor

 

Local Government

HF 562         County Recorder Fees. The fee currently for filing a marriage application and receiving a copy of the original is $35 with portions going to the general fund, Iowa Department Public Health vital records fund, and a portion retained by a county recorder. As amended in committee, the bill would keep the fee at $35 and increase the portion of what the county recorder receives and reduce the amount going to the vital records fund and the general fund. (passed Committee 19-1) to the Ways and Means Committee

HF 565         DHS Funding of Local County Office Space. Beginning in FY 2017, the Department of Human Services (DHS) will have to reimburse counties 40% of the expenses of office space used by staff. The current average is 37.5%. It would then increase by 5% per year until 60% is reached in four years. A county could enter into an agreement by resolution with DHS to reach a reimbursement amount. If an agreement is not reached it could go to arbitration per national arbitration rules. (passed Committee 14-6) to House Calendar

HF 566         Electronic Birth Certificate. Fees currently from the mailing of the certified copy of the birth certificate are used to support the implementing of the electronic birth certificate system. The bill specifies that this system will include parents of an adoption decree. Language in committee was added so not every birth certificate would be provided electronically, just the ones that are available in electronic form. (passed Committee 20-0) to House Calendar

HF 588         Disability Placard Renewal. Creates a 5 year registration renewal for new disability placards for parking for persons with disabilities issued after the Jan. 1, 2016. Some current disability placards can be for life. The new registration number would be visible from outside the car. Current fine would apply of $100. (passed Committee 20-0) to House Calendar

HF 596         Vehicle Registration Stop if Delinquent Property Taxes. The bill requires a county Treasurer to stop a car registration renewal if there are delinquent property taxes owed on a mobile home. It allows the Treasurer to renew if an error was made in identifying the mobile home or for a period of time if an agreement is reached with the occupant. (passed Committee 11-9) to House Calendar

 

Natural Resources

HF 288   Taking of catfish by bow and arrow. Allows catfish to be taken by bow and arrow in designated state parks and preserves. The current rule allows rough fish to be taken in this manner, and the bill expands the rule to include catfish. Bow and arrow must have an attached bow fishing reel and a violation of this rule is punishable by a $50 fine. (passed the House 80-19) to Senate Natural Resources and Environment Committee.

HF 537   Underground Storage Tank Cost Share Grant. Extends the underground storage tank cost share program until June 30, 2026. The Iowa Comprehensive Petroleum Underground Storage Tank fund will be given $1.75 million per quarter to replace old underground storage tank infrastructure with new tanks compatible with E-85. Any owner or operator of a location where gas or petroleum is sold may apply for these grants (up to 50% of the replacement cost), not to exceed one million dollars per calendar year. (passed Committee 21-0) to House Appropriations Committee.

 

Public Safety

HF 447         Wireless Service Providers Required to Release Information to Law Enforcement. Requires wireless service providers to provide location information on a device in certain emergency situations. (passed House 93-2) to Senate

HF 560         Expenditures from the E911 Communications Fund. Increases the percentage of surcharge on wireless phones that go to public safety answering points as well as makes appropriations for a statewide interoperability communication system. (passed Committee 20-0) to House Appropriations Committee

HF 585         Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Domestic Abuse or Sexual Assault. Creates a program in the Secretary of State’s Office where victims can sign up to have their mail sent to the Secretary of State, which in turn will forward it to a confidential address. (passed Committee 19-0) to House Calendar

 

State Government

HF 131         Definition of Beer. Changes the definition of beer for the purposes of brewers and wholesalers to include high alcohol beer. High alcohol beer is defined in Chapter 123 to include any beer from 5 to 12 percent ABW. (passed Senate 50-0) to the Governor.

HF 352         Zero Based Budgeting. Changes the current legislative budgeting process from incremental to a zero based approach. Makes all departments and agencies start with a zero budget and justify every expense of the department. Currently Georgia is the only state in the United States to use a true zero based budgeting approach. (passed the House 57-42) to Senate State Government Commitee

HF 506         Absentee Ballot Deadlines. Requires the all absentee ballots must be returned to the auditor’s office by the close of polls on Election Day. Carves out another classification for military ballots that must be received by noon before the day of the official canvass, regardless of if the ballot is postmarked or not. (passed the House 56-41) to Senate

HF 509         Government Accountability, Personal Settlement Agreements, and Bonus Pay. Requires that any resignation in lieu or termination or demotion of a public employee to become a public record. Eliminates any non-disclosure or confidentiality agreements for personal settlement agreements and mandates that decisions for executive bonus pay be made public record. The bill states that no provision of collective bargaining is to supersede the provision of the legislation. (passed the House 63-35) to Senate State Government Committee

SF 323         Lottery Funds to Veterans Trust Fund.  The bill repeals the requirement of the Iowa Lottery requirement to provide a limited series of lottery games to benefit the Veterans Trust Fund,  and establishes a $2.5 million annual transfer from Iowa Lottery to the Iowa Veterans Trust Fund until it reaches $50 million.  Once the trust fund is filled, the funds will then be distributed to each county based 50% distributed equally to each county and 50% distributed on the population of veterans in the county.  The bill maintains the commitment of the lottery funds, should gaming revenues not be sufficient to repay bonds for Vision Iowa. (Passed the House 92-5) to the Governor

 

Transportation

HF 563         Vehicle recyclers, transfers, national motor vehicle title information system. Allows for recycling of vehicle without a title or junking certificate if the vehicle is 12 years or older and less than $1,000 market value. Those seeking to become auto recyclers must provide proof of registration with the national motor vehicle title information system (NMVTIS) and requires the following of other federal guidelines and makes penalties for noncompliance. (passed committee 20-0) to House Calendar

HF 571         Minor’s Driver’s License. Allows minor’s with a special driver’s license to travel to extracurricular activities for the purpose of participating in the activity. The travel must be within the minor’s school district or a continuous school district. The activities include those of all organizations registered with the department of education for the purposes of interscholastic competition. (passed committee 20-0) to House Calendar

HF 587         Manufacturer and Distributor Agreements for RV’s. Creates a separate chapter in code for franchise laws dealing with recreational vehicles, removing them from automobile franchise regulations. (passed committee 12-8) to House Calendar

HSB 175      Distribution of fines imposed by automated traffic enforcement. Requires a citation imposed by a traffic camera to give a list of where the money from the citation is going to. (passed committee 12-8) to House Calendar

 

Veterans Affairs

HF 166         Disabled Veterans Homestead Property Tax Exemption – Fix. The bill is intended to fix an error from last year.  Amends the eligibility criteria for the credit to include a veteran that has a permanent and total disability rating based on individual employability, which is compensated at the 100% disability rate, as certified by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.  The bill also removes the provision that terminates eligibility for the credit for a surviving spouse receiving dependency and indemnity compensation when the surviving spouse remarries. The bill takes effect upon enactment and applies retroactively to May 26, 2014, for applications for the homestead credit filed on or after that date. (signed; effective 3/5/15)

HF 205         Veteran Reporting Requirements for Colleges and Universities.  Currently, private colleges, Regents Universities, and community colleges are required to file annual reports with the Governor and the Legislature relating to the award of educational credits to veterans for  military education, training, and experience. The bill amends the definition of veteran to include members of the reserve forces of the United States and of the National Guard who have served at least one year of the service commitment and are eligible for, or have exhausted, federal education benefits for veterans. (signed; effective 7/1/15)

SF 130         National Guard Educational Assistance Program. Changes the parameters of the National Guard Educational Assistance Program. Under current law, a qualifying student can receive assistance for up to eight full time semesters, or 16 semesters for part-time students. The bill changes the limitations to a total of 120 hours. There is also language regarding current students who have received some assistance. (passed House 99-0) Sent to Governor

 

Ways & Means

SF 173         School District Property Tax Replacement Payments. Modifies the school district property tax replacement payments because of per pupil increases. (signed; effective 3-5-15)