Pro-Jobs Bills Clear Funnel

This week the Iowa House reached its first self-imposed deadline related to legislative action, commonly referred to as the “First Funnel.” For a policy bill to remain eligible for debate by the full House at some point later during the session, it must be approved by a House Committee before the end of the week or “First Funnel.” If a bill doesn’t survive the “First Funnel”, it is likely the issue is dead for the remainder of the year. This rule does not apply to budget bills or tax bills.

I’m pleased to report that numerous pro-jobs bills cleared the deadline.

The following pro-jobs bills remain alive after the first funnel:

House File 2042— Requires all administrative rules created by state agencies must be accompanied by a ‘Jobs Impact Statement’. Administrative rules are the regulations drawn up by government bureaucrats to implement laws approved by the legislature. (Status: Awaiting Senate Action)

House File 2085–Relates to employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and provides an incentive for a business owner to sell all or a portion of a company to an Iowa-based ESOP. This would result in the employees of a company having ownership interest in their company and would also keep jobs in Iowa communities. (Status: Awaiting Senate Action)

House File 2103 – Makes it easier for new employers to do business in Iowa by reducing the length of time they pay an ‘introductory rate’ for unemployment taxes. This introductory rate is not based on the employer’s history and often forces them to subsidize existing employers. New employers will spend less time paying a tax rate mandated by the state, and more time paying a tax rate they have earned. (Status: Awaiting Senate Action)

House File 2104 –Allows employers to recover faster from the last few years of economic sluggishness and get back to a lower tax rate, freeing up money to hire more employees or invest in their business.
(Status: Awaiting Senate Action)

Budget –As economic uncertainty continues throughout the country, House Republicans will take a conservative approach to the budget to give stability for Iowa’s job creators. Controlling government spending by spending less than the government takes in demonstrates a commitment to commonsense budgeting and economic health that employers deserve. The best way to help Iowa’s employers is to limit government spending. (Status: Moving through House committee)

House File 2274 –Our current property tax system affects Iowa’s economy and is an impediment to putting people back to work. Our uncompetitive property tax system is a burden on job creators and prohibits businesses of all sizes from expanding, hiring or even settling in Iowa. The House Republicans’ plan delivers significant relief and genuine reform to all property taxpayers. (Status: Awaiting Senate Action)

House Study Bill 591 – Makes changes to the existing High Quality Jobs Program to aid businesses seeking to locate in Iowa or to expand their current operations. The bill adds a cash incentive component to the program, which had previously only offered tax benefits. The proposed plan also will allow the Iowa Economic Development Authority to retain a portion of the withholding dollars on incented jobs that are created so as to provide for a stable funding mechanism for cash based incentives that the Authority awards. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House Study Bill 645 –House Republicans have continued their efforts of listening to Iowans and digging deep into the budgets, with a line by line review to cut out waste and find efficiencies. With Iowans help, we will once again create a state budget that is efficient and effective. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House Study Bill 604 – Iowa manufacturers have supply-chains that provide the anchor manufacturer with the products they need. Because of Iowa’s tax system, a corporation’s income tax is taxed based on sales inside the state of Iowa. This helps our large multinational corporations that see most of their sales occur outside the state, but can hurt Iowa suppliers who sell most of their goods to these larger manufacturers in the state, and thus exposing them to more state income taxes. This bill seeks to provide some relief to these Iowa suppliers that continue to grow in the state. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House Joint Resolution 2006 – Ensures future Legislatures are not able to use budget gimmicks to get around the state’s budget limitation law, constitutionally protects the Taxpayers Trust Fund from being raided, and requires a 60 percent majority to approve any new tax increases. These measures will bring stability and certainty for job creators future planning. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House File 2307 –Changes to the Statute of Repose which will shorten the time a person can be sued by contractors after they’ve purchased a commercial building – currently Iowa has the longest time in the nation. This will allow job creators to put more resources in hiring or expansion rather than legal fees. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House Study Bill 614 — Tort reform legislation which protects land owners if a trespasser is injured on their land, unless the land owner was negligent. This legislation protects business owners from frivolous and costly lawsuits. (Status: Survived Funnel)

House Study Bill 612 –Tort reform legislation that protects Iowans from frivolous civil law suits by providing them with potential to collect costs and attorney’s fees if the case is thrown out of court because it is not based on law or fact. This legislation prevents small businesses from being bankrupted by frivolous law suits. (Status: Survived Funnel)

Early on in the session we declared any bills that would hurt economic growth or hinder our growth instantly dead on arrival. Iowa businesses are no longer threatened with job-killing ideas like Fair Share, Open Scope Bargaining, Prevailing Wage and Doctor Shopping. Any attempts to gut Iowa’s right to work law or make it more difficult to be an employer in the state of Iowa are dead.

Additionally, last year the House passed several pro-growth measures that are still awaiting action in the Senate. They are:
House File 149 – Strengthening Iowa’s Right to Work Status
Sitting in Senate Subcommittee since 2-7-11

House File 194– 20 percent income tax cut for all individual filers
Sitting in Senate Subcommittee since 2-17-11

House File 525 – Collective Bargaining Reform
Sitting in Senate Subcommittee since 3-14-11

House File 111 – Health Care Freedom Act
Sitting in Subcommittee since 2-8-11

Three additional House property tax reform proposals:
House File 691
Senate File 522
amendment H-1716

In order to create quality jobs and careers for Iowans, job creators need to know our economy is stable. House Republicans will keep working through legislation that will continue our focus on jobs, savings and certainty for job creators and all Iowans.

As always you may contact me at my office at (515) 282-3521 or email