Greetings from the Statehouse

By Michael Bergan

This week, the Iowa House passed a bill to set the percent growth for Supplemental State Aid for K-12 schools at 2.5%. This equates to a $159 million in new money for K-12 public schools.

This week, the Iowa House passed a bill to set the percent growth for Supplemental State Aid for K-12 schools at 2.5%. This equates to a $159 million in new money for K-12 public schools. The State Cost Per Pupil (SCPP) amount increases from $7,234 to $7,412 – $186 increase per student. Our plan also includes an additional $5 SCPP increase, as well as a transportation equity piece to help rural schools with their transportation costs. On top of that money, House Republicans also passed a bill appropriating an additional $19.2 million for schools to help pay for para-educators, substitute teachers, bus drivers and support staff and any other expenses that have increased due to high-inflation. 
HF2361, which creates a cybersecurity simulation training center at Iowa State University has been assigned to the Appropriations Committee. This cybersecurity simulation training center [CySim] will conduct and sponsor research and activities that enable businesses, teams, and others to practice of strategies to counter and mitigate cyber threats and attacks. It will be available to businesses, state agencies, political subdivisions, as well as students and educators. CySim will be capable of conducting cybersecurity training exercises, developing case studies, providing at setting for Student events and competitions, providing training exercises for educators, and coordinating cybersecurity workforce development.  There is a significant need for cyber security awareness and defenses at all levels of government, business, and for everyone.
Geordan Hanson of Elgin was at the Capitol as a member of the Iowa Cattlemen’s Leadership Program. I attended the group’s meeting with Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig. Naig touched on several duties of the department, highlighting animal disease control, meat processing and inspections, and marketing products locally. 
I meet with County Supervisor Sharon Keehner of Clayton County at the statewide meeting of county supervisors. Joanie Rollins of Decorah joined other Iowa realtors in advocacy efforts to improve land transfer processes.  The Aaron and Karla Bicknese family of Elgin were at the Capitol for a tour. Please let me know in advance if you plan to visit the Capitol while we are in session. I can be reached by email at michael.bergan@legis.iowa.gov.

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