Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds

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Governor Kim Reynolds spoke this morning with the task force she’s assembled to come up with a series of criminal justice reforms, according to Radio Iowa.

HARD ROCK - SIOUX CITY, IA
Siouxland Public Media

The topic of cybersecurity took center stage at a Town Hall at the Hard Rock this morning.  

Senior Special Agent from the Omaha office of the FBI Ken Schmutz says cybercrime impact everyone from businesses to individuals.

“We want to work these investigations and learn how these adversaries get in and on the criminal side put them in jail and to further protect our infrastructure from these guys.”

Schmutz says 70-percent of hackers come from outside of the United States mainly from the countries of China, Russia and Iran.

PM News 7.30.19

Jul 30, 2019

Sports gambling in Iowa now has an official start date. The state Racing and Gaming Commission has given 18 casinos the initial go-ahead to start taking bets at Noon on August 15th,  although some may start at a later date.

However, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is not on that list.  Officials with the Hard Rock says they plan to be on the agenda next month because they haven’t worked out all of the details with a partnership agreement with their sports book.

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Top Republican lawmakers at the Iowa Capitol have denied a request from Democrats to start a special committee to study the state’s medical-marijuana program.

Republican Governor Kim Reynolds vetoed a bipartisan bill this year that would’ve allowed for more potent medical marijuana products.

Senate Republican Leader Jack Whitver says medical marijuana will be at the forefront of the 2020 legislative session, but he says a special committee isn’t necessary.

State regulators could soon finalize rules for legalizing sports betting in Iowa.  

iowacourt.gov

The Iowa Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal of a lawsuit challenging a new state law that changed the way some judges are selected in Iowa.

A state court judge last month dismissed the lawsuit filed in May by a group of lawyers and Democratic lawmakers against Gov. Kim Reynolds, saying they didn't have legal standing to challenge the law.

The new law gave the governor an additional appointment to the 17-member state judicial nominating commission, meaning the governor will appoint the majority of members.  

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Those who are challenging a new state law that restructures the state’s judicial nominating process got a setback today, according to the Sioux City Journal. The Iowa Supreme Court has refused to issue a temporary injunction in that lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the new state law but has granted a motion for an expedited appeal.

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The state of Iowa has agreed to pay two private insurance companies an additional 386 million state and federal dollars to operate the state’s Medicaid program. 

Under the newly-signed contracts, Iowa Total Care and Amerigroup will receive an eight-point six percent increase for the current fiscal year, which began on July 1.

State Medicaid Director Mike Randol told the Council on Human Services on Wednesday that reasons for the increase include changes in program and legislative requirements.

A Republican state senator who is challenging U.S. Rep. Steve King for the GOP nomination in Iowa's 4th Congressional District says he's stepping down as chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

The committee has been at the center of significant tax legislation since Republicans regained the majority in 2016.  Feenstra says he's asked to be involved next year in drafting tax policy, just not as committee chairman.

He's in his third Senate term.

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Governor Kim Reynolds says she’s grateful the U-S Congress has finally approved a 19-billion-dollar disaster aid package that includes money for Iowa communities affected by flooding.

Floodwaters devastated western Iowa in mid-March, and floods have been affecting more and more of the state since then.

Reynolds says officials haven’t been able to get a complete damage assessment yet. 

Noon News 5.10.19

May 10, 2019
Nebraska Farm Bureau

A new report says a nearly $200 million decline in Nebraska's agricultural exports in 2017 was driven by President Donald Trump's threats to impose tariffs on U.S. trading partners.

The Nebraska Farm Bureau report attributes the drop to decreases in soybean and corn exports, while beef and pork exports both increased in 2017.

The findings come as Trump imposed his latest tariff hike on Chinese goods Friday. 

A bill to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes in Nebraska has advanced out of a legislative committee.  It will now go to the full Unicameral for debate.

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