State financial analysts predict that Iowa will experience continuous budget deficits totaling over 191 million-dollars over the next few financial quarters. The Republican-led state legislature has passed large budget cuts recommended by Governor Terry Branstad, and some of those cuts are in public safety. Sioux City Democratic Representative Chris Hall and Democratic State Senator Bob Hogg (Hoag) of Cedar Rapids were in Sioux City Friday to take a close up look at the veteran’s law court. Hogg said that such specialty courts are important in keeping people out of jail and on the right track.
“They are trying to, with the help of the courts of the VA and the Dept. of Corrections, they are trying to turn their lives around, and that’s really important that the state be able to provide that kind of service and what Woodbury County is doing is a model for the rest of the state. We should be adding specialty courts, not taking them away.”
Hall said that the budget shortfall is not something that is going to be repaired in one or two fiscal years.
“Legislative Republicans are preparing to borrow 191 million dollars from the state’s rainy day account. That’s something that the state’s not going to be able to repay in the next few years because the budget’s not in good enough shape. So they’re borrowing money that we can’t repaying in the coming year.”
The Legislature is back in session today.