(DES MOINES)—Speaker Pro Tem Steve Olson (R-DeWitt) delivered opening remarks to the Iowa House of Representatives today. The following are his remarks, as prepared for delivery:
Mr. Speaker, ladies and gentlemen of the House and guests. First, thank you Representatives Cownie, Hanusa, and Lykam – I am humbled by your kind words. Also, thank you to my fellow legislators. It is an honor to serve as the Speaker Pro Tempore once again.
Today, I am grateful; grateful that my constituents chose to send me back here, back to this building to be their voice in the legislature. It is with tremendous honor and gratitude that I took the oath of office today with my family with me – my wife Eunice, (insert names of all family at the Capitol). I am also grateful that you, my colleagues have chosen me as the Speaker Pro Tempore.
Ladies and gentlemen; today we all begin a journey together; working together for a common goal – working for the good of the fine people of this great state. It has been said many times before “we can do better,” ladies and gentlemen, it is true we can do better and we will do better.
Last fall, together with Governor Branstad and the Senate Republicans, House Republicans presented an action plan. An action plan to promote a durable and prosperous Iowa – that action plan is called Iowa Strong. It is an ambitious agenda – one that is about the big issues and this session must center on the big issues:
-We must continue to work on keeping the Iowa economy moving forward by:
0Promoting job creation through tax relief and reform for Iowa families and businesses
-Ending job-killing red tape and burdensome regulations on Iowa farmers and businesses
-Continuing to adopt a budget that spends less than we take in
-Moving forward education reforms that will strengthen our schools and communities
Last November, Senator Marco Rubio visited our great state. He offered an astute observation on the American people, “The social and moral well-being of people is directly linked to their economic well-being.” These words ring true – so when we begin the people’s business here in this chamber and in committee meetings, we must continually keep in mind the most important issue that faces us – our economy.
Today, we have the nation’s third highest property tax on businesses – this means all business large and small. We cannot afford to over burden the small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the large-scale job creators. But not just that — we need to lower income taxes for Iowa families and put more money in their pockets.
After all, the money the state collects is not our money – it comes from our constituents. When we consider spending decisions we must always keep that in mind. We must continue to spend the people’s money wisely – and continue to do what we started – spend less than we take in.
Ladies and gentlemen, we have a lot of work to do. I look forward to working with all of you to make Iowa strong – to make our state a better place, to grow our economy. As we begin the 85th General Assembly let’s remember we were elected to serve by the folks back home to make the right decisions for the betterment of this state.
Thank you, now let’s get to work.