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The Exchange, Legislative Preview 01/03/18


The Exchange 010318

Coming up today on The Exchange, a Sioux City state lawmaker is suing Governor Kim Reynolds for the way she transferred millions of dollars in reserve funds to balance the budget. Chris Hall says the budgeting process needs a hard look from lawmakers as well.

Also, we hear from newly-elected state senator Jim Carlin on his goals for the upcoming legislative session that starts Monday.  Carlin says he wants to focus on several financial issues, one of which is tax reform to help Iowa’s economic climate.

Iowa Public Radio gives us a rundown on the major issues lawmakers will face in the Iowa Legislature.  We also talk with a South Dakota statehouse reporter about what’s coming up the new legislative session in Pierre that starts today.  

That and more, but first this news. 

News Wx


Welcome to the Exchange on Siouxland Public Media. I’m Mary Hartnett. 

Sioux City state representative Chris Hall suing the state over the way money was handled in the state budgeting process.  The Third District Democratic Representative says he is concerned about financial issues and the budgeting.   Hall is alleging that Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds and a top aide broke the law when they transferred $13 million from a reserve fund to balance the budget.

The lawsuit was filed yesterday against Reynolds and Department of Management director Dave Roederer.  Hall is the ranking member on the House Appropriations committee.   The lawsuit claims that the legal conditions weren't met to trigger the governor's transfer authority, an argument Reynolds has dismissed. Hall says he believe that keeping the state accountable financially is one issue that Republicans and Democrats should be able to get together on.

Chris Hall (D), Third District House Representative, Sioux City

ChrisHall3  11:11

In: “The state budget . . .”

Out: “. . . the same too.”

That was Chris Hall, the third district state representative from Sioux City.  Hall is suing the Governor of Iowa over her handling of the transfer of 13 million dollars in emergency funding to meet deficits in the general fund. Lawsuit 010318

Reynolds' spokeswoman said in an email today that "this is a political lawsuit with political motivations, plain and simple."

Hall is the ranking member on the House Appropriations committee.  You can hear more from Representative Chris Hall today at noon on The Exchange.

You’re listening to The Exchange on Siouxland Public Media. I’m Mary Hartnett. 

Siouxland has a new Republican state senator that will be sworn in soon. Jim Carlin won a special election earlier this month to take over the third district seat through the end of this year.  It was just last year that the Sioux City attorney won the sixth district house seat.  Looking ahead to the coming session, Carlin says he and other Republicans believe the state needs to change its tax system to remain economically competitive. 

Jim Carlin (R), Third District, Iowa State Senate, Sioux City

JimCarlin 12:47

In: “One of the most basic . . . .”

Out: “. . of Iowa’s farmers.”

That was Jim Carlin, the newly elected third district state senator for Siouxland.  Carlin is taking his new seat and leaving behind an open sixth district house seat.  As of today, there are two candidates for that office.  They are  Rita DeJong, a Democrat and former Sioux City teacher and principal, and Jacob Bossman, a Republican who lost a bid for Iowa House District 6 in 2016, when Carlin won the position, are the nominees of the respective parties for the Jan. 16 election.

After floating the possibility last week, Jake Jungers, of Sioux City, will not run as a minor party candidate for the Iowa House District 6 seat in a Jan. 16 special election.

The seat is open because Jim Carlin, a Dec. 12 special election for the seat in Iowa Senate District 3.

The winner of the Jan. 16 election will fill the last year of Carlin's two-year House term.  Carlin is a first-term Republican. He defeated Democrat Todd Wendt of Le Mars for the seat last month.

You’re listening to the Exchange on Siouxland public Media. I’m Mary Hartnett.

In Iowa, there are several issues that are facing lawmakers as the legislative session begins on Monday. 

Joyce Russell of Iowa Public Radio says this year looks like it will be another session plagued by budget deficits and the need to make cutbacks. 

Joyce Russell, Iowa Public Radio

JoyceRussell  8:44

That was Iowa Public Radio’s Joyce Russell talking about the legislative session that begins on Monday in Des Moines. 

You’re listening to the Exchange on Siouxland Public media. I’m Mary Hartnett.

South Dakota is set to begin its legislative session on Tuesday.  The short session will end by the end of February. Sioux Falls Argus Leader reporter Dana Feguson gives us a preview.

Dana Ferguson, Sioux Falls Argus Leader
South Dakota Statehouse


Dana Ferguson


That was Dana Ferguson, a reporter for the Sioux Falls Argus Leader talking about the south Dakota legislative session that begins on Tuesday.  Nebraska. Nebraska’s legislative session begins today and it is also short one. 

Republican Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts
Nebraska Unicameral

Gov. Pete Ricketts say the state budget is a top priority. The state faces a projected $173.3 million revenue shortfall in the current two-year budget cycle, which ends on June 30, 2019.

Ricketts and key lawmakers say they intend to adjust the budget without raising taxes. Ricketts is expected to introduce a new tax package after his previous effort stalled in the 2017 session. The proposal will likely include some mix of income tax and property tax cuts although the governor has offered few specifics. One lawmaker has announced plans to introduce new measures that would require a government-issued identification at the polls — an issue likely to resonate with Republican voters. 

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