Government Oversight Committee Report – Week 13, 2018

SSB 3209 – State Building Code Advisory Council authority;
SSB 3210 – Authorizing ABATE to sell merchandise at Capitol;
HF 2475 – Lobbyist exceptions to gift law;
HF 2477 – Auditor whistleblower protections and confidentiality. 



SSB 3209 requires the Building Code Advisory Council to approve or disapprove amendments to the state building code, proposed by the commissioner or a member of the council. The council must approve or disapprove requests for use of alternate materials or methods of construction recommended by the commissioner or a member of the council. Current law requires the state building code commissioner, with the approval of the State Building Code Advisory Council, to adopt and amend or revise the state building code.
[4/4: 3-2, party line]


SSB 3210 allows the Brotherhood Aimed Towards Education (ABATE) to hold a motorcycle rally toy run on October 14, 2018, to collect toys for Iowa children. ABATE of Iowa wishes to sell commemorative t-shirts, sweatshirts, lapel pins and patches to benefit Iowa children and to defray the cost of a police escort. This resolution is necessary because current rules prohibit merchandise sales on the state Capitol complex grounds without prior approval.
[4/4: 5-0]


HF 2477 concerns disclosures of information to the State Auditor and the confidentiality of information pertaining to an audit or examination. Under the bill, merit system and state employees will be protected from adverse employment action as a reprisal for disclosing information to the State Auditor. Any information received pertaining to an audit or examination must be confidential and not subject to open records. In addition, the identities of complainants and witnesses must be kept confidential during an audit, but will be included in the public record upon completion of the audit.
[4/4: 5-0]


HF 2475 concerns the ethics and regulation of lobbyists and gifts. Currently, the definition of “lobbyist” has eight exceptions, including that a person is not a lobbyist if they are a member, director, trustee, officer or committee member of a business, trade, labor, farm, professional, religious, education or charitable association, foundation or organization who is not paid or is not specifically designated as a lobbyist. For that exception to apply, the person must not be paid compensation AND must not be specifically designated as a lobbyist. A House amendment changes the title slightly and makes the bill effective upon enactment.
[4/4: 5-0]