Earlier this week Governor Branstad formally filed his objection to a 2008 rule that requires farmers to have an inspection done on most electrical work. In his letter to Department of Public Safety Commissioner Larry Noble the governor stated that the rule was a “power-grab” by the Electrical Examining Board (board) and that it was “unreasonable, arbitrary, and capricious.”
Branstad objected to Iowa Administrative Code r. 661-551.2 and 661-552.1 noting that he felt the board went beyond their statutory authority because Iowa Code Chapter 103 does not give the board permission to regulate electrical installations on farms by requiring an inspection or permit. Branstad stated that he felt such a requirement increased the regulatory burden on farmers, was excessively costly, and clearly violated the intent of legislature by circumventing the common-sense exemption for farmers. He said that a $500 inspection is not needed because farmers generally hire licensed electricians to do the work.
The governor could not veto the rule (put in place by former Governor Culver) because it is more than 70 days old. However, his formal objection to the rule does mean that it will be easier for farmers to challenge the rule in court.
The full text of Governor Branstad’s rule objection can be found here