Appropriations Committee Report – Week 15, 2019


SF 638/SSB 1262—Standings budget

HF 766—Health and Human Services Budget


SF 632—Gambling Treatment Program Appropriation

HF 758—Education Budget


SF 608—Economic Development Budget

SF 609—Agriculture and Natural Resources Budget

SF 615—Justice Budget

SF 616—Judicial Budget

HF 756 – Federal Block Grant bill

HF 765—RIIF Budget



SF 638/SSB 1262—Standings budget

Division I–Standing Appropriations and Related Matters

  • Nonpublic school transportation: Limits the FY20 General Fund appropriation to the Department of Education for nonpublic school transportation to $8,197,091.
  • Instructional Support Program: Suspends the standing appropriation of $14.8 million to the Department of Education. School districts may use local property taxes and income surtaxes to fund their portion of the Program. State funding for this program has not been provided since FY11.
  • State School Aid and AEA funding: Reduces FY20 State School Aid to Area Education Agencies (AEAs) by an additional $15 million, for a total reduction of $22.5 million.


Division II–Miscellaneous Appropriations

  • Flood Mitigation: Provides for a $15 million appropriation from FY19 General Fund to the Flood Mitigation Fund (418.10). The appropriation is for projects located in any county that has been declared a major disaster by the President of the United States on or after March 12, 2019, and also a county in which individuals are eligible for federal individual assistance. Applicable to these counties as of April 22: Woodbury, Monona, Harrison, Shelby, Pottawattamie, Mills and Fremont. Effective upon enactment.


Division III–Miscellaneous Provisions

  • Ombudsman Annual Report due date change: Changes the due date of the Ombudsman’s report to the Legislature from April 1 to December 15 each year.


Division IV–Corrective Provisions

Makes corrective changes identified by the Legislative Services Agency (LSA) to numerous bills passed and signed by the Governor this year: HF 690 (Children’s’ Mental Health); SF 274 (Campus “free speech”); HF 679 (Substantive Code Editor’s Bill); SF 558 (Domestic Surplus Lines); SF 559 (electronic insurance notices); HF 610 (adult guardianships and conservatorships); and SF 333 (non-substantive Code Editor’s bill).


Division V–State Budget Process

This division is the same as HF 740, as passed by the House on April 15 by a 48-0 vote. The language codifies provisions relating to the salary model administrator, which appeared annually in standings appropriation bills. In the past, the language required the five institutions under the jurisdiction of the State Board of Regents to provide salary data to the Department of Management (DOM) and LSA. The new language no longer references five institutions. Instead, it references 262.7: the State University of Iowa, including the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics; Iowa State University of Science and Technology, including the Agricultural Experiment Station; University of Northern Iowa; Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School; State School for the Deaf; the Oakdale Campus; and University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics’ Center for Disabilities and Development.

Also, this division codifies provisions relating to the state budget process that appear biennially and apply annually in the standings appropriations bill. It requires state agencies to submit budget information each year to DOM and include all proposed expenditures, supporting data and explanations; requires the director of DOM to consult with LSA concerning the provision of support data; and requires budgeted expenditures to be prioritized by program or by expected results, including performance measures. By codifying these sections, we will not see them in future standings bills.


Division VI: Blackout Special Registration Plates

Allows the Iowa Department of Transportation to issue a $35 blackout special registration plate. The plate’s background must be black and the numbering white. The vehicle owner must not place a frame that blocks the plate number, state or county name, or validation/registration sticker. Monies collected by Road Use Tax Fund will be credited to each county’s county mental health and disabilities services fund. In addition to the initial $35 fee, there is a $10 annual fee for blackout license plates and a $5 fee, if applicable, for personalized plates. Similar to SF 271 (in Ways and Means), no window tinting.

An amendment adopted in committee strikes a provision in the bill that eliminated the requirement for the Legislature to pass a joint pay resolution. In addition, the amendment strikes language allowing the Regents to get outside counsel without the approval of the Attorney General’s Office.
[4/23: short form]


HF 766—Health and Human Services Budget

This budget provides funding for the Department of Aging (IDA), including the Long Term Care Ombudsman’s Office; Department of Human Services (DHS), including Medicaid; Department of Public Health (IDPH); and Veteran’s Affairs, including the Veteran’s Home. The Senate version appropriates $550,000 directly to the University of Iowa; the House version passes the same amount through IDPH to the University of Iowa.


FY20 Senate GOP Recommendation                                 $ 1,937,186,761 (Joint target)
FY19 Net Appropriation (includes supplemental)           $ 1,972,069,375
Difference                                                                               $ -34,882,614

House GOP Target                                                                 $1,941,888,698 ($4.7 million over Senate)

Governor’s Target                                                                 $1,920,888,698 ($17 million lower than Senate)


  • A supplemental appropriation for FY19 of $150.3 million for Medicaid is included in both House and Senate.
  • The Senate version totals to the joint target of $1,937,186,761. The House version is $4.7 million over the joint target.
  • The FY20 budget is $35 million less than the FY19 total budget that includes the supplemental appropriation. The FY20 budget is $115 million more than what was appropriated last session for FY19 when you subtract the supplemental appropriation.
  • The supplemental was needed for FY19 due to negotiated increases with the MCOs.
  • Like last year, the FY20 appropriation does NOT include any increases that might be negotiated with the MCOs for FY20, which means a supplemental will be necessary next session as well.
  • The bill contains no significant improvements to privatized Medicaid.
  • $150,000 increase to IDA for the Pre-Medicaid pilot project that assists non-Medicaid patients who wish to return to their community after a nursing home stay. The total for the project is now $250,000.
  • NEW ITEM: Increase of $550,000 to IDPH for rural psychiatry residency and training; $400,000 for rural psychiatry residencies and $150,000 for psychiatric training for nurse practitioners and physician assistants. House and Senate at same funding level; Senate appropriates money directly to the University of Iowa; House appropriates money through IDPH to UI.
  • NEW ITEM: $338,000 for Your Life Iowa hotline expansion to include children’s mental health. House and Senate are the same.
  • Senate Only: $58,000 increase to the Drug Donation Depository Program.
  • Senate Only: $20,000 increase to Specialty Health Care.
  • Senate Only: $50,000 to Iowa Donor Network (total of $150,000).
  • SENATE ONLY. $700,000 for MHDS Regions Children’s Behavioral Health Coordinators. Equally distributed to the 14 Regions at $50,000 each.
  • Overall increase to Field Operations of $6.3 million (House and Senate at same level for Field Ops).
    • Increase of $1.5 million to DHS field operations for more staff positions to lower caseloads (DHS must hire 29 FTEs).
    • $4.4 million increase for Field Operations to maintain current staffing at 1,438 FTEs (salaries).
    • $409,223 to hire six FTEs to work on the ELIAS project.
  • $1.2 million increase for Eldora State Training School in both House and Senate.
  • $4.1 million increase to Child and Family Services for core services and program growth in both House and Senate.
  • Child Care Assistance includes an increase of $3 million to annualize FY19 provider rate increases; an increase of $4 million to reflect the forecasted need; and an increase of $1.1 million to meet the federal quality set-aside requirements. This is status quo from the general fund but is paid for with $8.1 million from the Child Care Development Fund received previously. Same in House and Senate.
  • $345,896 increase to Cherokee Mental Health Institute. Same in House and Senate.
  • $1.65 million increase to Independence Mental Health Institute. Same in House and Senate.
  • Glenwood and Woodward receive net reductions ($1.3 million) due to FMAP changes that bring in more federal funds. Same in House and Senate.
  • $1.2 million to Civil Commitment Unit for Sex Offenders (CCUSO) replaces one-time funding and funds additional staff. Same in House and Senate.
  • SENATE provides $1.3 million for corporate technology, which is $470,063 more than the House; $824,832 for corporate technology in the House (a new line item to update technology department-wide).
  • $1.4 million increase for Medical contracts (IME). Same in House and Senate.
  • $150.3 million FY19 supplemental appropriation. Same in House and Senate.
  • $62.4 million general increase for FY20.
  • Senate: $20.5 million for nursing facility rebasing, which is $7 million less than the $27.5 million increase for nursing facility rebasing in the House version (Governor had recommended $8.5 million).
  • Senate and House both appropriate a $1.5 million increase for Critical Access Hospitals (rural hospitals) cost settlement. We had SF 196 to do this. Cost settlement went away with managed care implementation. There are 82 Critical Access Hospitals in Iowa. Senate version raises reimbursement rates for Critical Access Hospitals but does not bring back the cost settlement process.
  • Senate and House both include $1.2 million increase to eliminate the waiting list for the Children’s Mental Health HCBS waiver. As of March 1, there were 1,051 children on the waiting list (Children’s Board recommendation).
  • Senate and House both include $1.09 million increase for reimbursement rates for Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) part of the complex needs bill services.
  • Senate Only: $1 million increase for the Tiered Rates to increase supported community living provider daily rate cells for all tiers, effective July 1, 2019.
  • A decrease of $195,000 due to a veto of a durable medical equipment project.
  • This is an overall net decrease of $56.8 million compared to the FY19 total that includes the supplemental.
  • Significant policy
    • Senate version does not include RFP process for many IDPH and DHS allocations.
    • Senate version does not include IDPH Director hiring directors for Medical, Dental, Nursing and Pharmacy boards.
    • Senate includes Medicaid coverage for legal permanent resident pregnant women.
      [4/22: 13-8, party-line]


SF 632—Gambling Treatment Program Appropriation

SF 632 makes an appropriation of $300,000 (for FY20) to the Department of Public Health for a gambling treatment program established in Iowa Code 135.150. This appropriation is contingent upon the enactment of Iowa Code section 8.57, subsection 6 (relating to sports betting).
[COMMITTEE 4/18: short form (Absent: Lykam, Mathis). FLOOR 4/23: 47-2 (No: Hogg, R. Taylor; Absent: Petersen)]


HF 758—Education Budget

HF 758, as amended, is the Republican agreement for the FY20 budgets of the Department of Blind, College Student Aid Commission, the Department of Education and the Board of Regents. The amendment appropriates $952.7 million, which is $8.2 million below the original House bill and $10.6 million below the Governor’s recommendation. Overall, this amendment spends $40 million more than last year.


FY20 Senate GOP Recommendation                        $ 952,733,479
FY19 Appropriation                                                         $ 912,675,487
Difference                                                                          $ 40 million
Percent Increase                                                              4.4 percent increase

Original House GOP Target                                          $960,883,480

Original Governor’s Target                                           $963,275,618


Department for the Blind: $80,000 over FY19. The department provides services to educate and train blind and visually impaired people with their daily lives. Both the Senate and House are at the Governor’s level. Increase will place a sixth Independent Living teacher in the field for more frequent visits.


College Student Aid Commission: $14.6 million over FY19. The Senate amendment provides $4.6 million less funding than the House and $6.5 million less than the Governor. Key differences/increases include:

  • Iowa Tuition Grant (ITG): Senate/House/Gov: $1 million increase, for a total of $47.7million.
  • ITG For-Profit: Senate = $50,000 increase. House/Gov = $8,000-10,000 increase.
  • All Iowa Opportunity Scholarships: $159,000 increase/$3 million. Gov=status quo.
  • Rural Primary Care Loan Repayment Program: Senate = status quo funding. House = increase of $300,000.
  • NEWFuture Ready Iowa Last-Dollar Scholarship: $13 million. Senate = $11.7 million/House =$14.7 million/Gov=$17.2 million. This is similar to the GAP program and is tuition assistance for students to finish their targeted training.
  • NEWFuture Ready Iowa Grant Program: $0 in Education. Targeted at students that have left college but completed at least half their degree credits.


Department of Education: $11.8 million over FY19. House = $13.3 million/Gov = $12 million over FY19.

  • NEW: Children’s Mental Health: $2.1 million for this bipartisan priority. House/Gov = $3 million.
    • Train teachers to detect mental health issues in students and determine appropriate follow-up.
  • NEW: Nonpublic School Concurrent Enrollment (HF 603): $1 million (caps max standing unlimited appropriation).
  • Nonpublic Textbook Services: Status Quo. Senate = $200,000 increase, House/Gov = Status Quo.
  • Student Achievement and Teacher Quality Program: Status Quo, amendment restores line-item appropriations.
  • Iowa Assessment: Senate/House/Gov = $300,000 increase which is $3 million total.
    • Increase of $300,000 is designated for nonpublic schools only.
  • IJAG: $1 million increase, total of $2.7 million.
  • NEW: Best Buddies = $25,000. House/Gov = $0.
  • Iowa Learning Online (ILO): $0. House/Gov = $500,000.
  • Career Technical Education (CTE) Secondary: $320,000 increase to $2.9 million. Gov = status quo.
  • Early Childhood Iowa (ECI): $500,000 increase. Senate = $0/House = $1 million /$23 million total.


Vocational Rehabilitation Division: Status quo funding of $5.9 million, which matches the House and Governor’s level.


Iowa Public Television (IPTV): $50,000 increase over FY19, for a total of $7.7 million in FY20.

Community Colleges
: Senate/Gov = $4.7 million increase/$207 million. House = $7 million increase.

  • New: ESL Adult Basic Literacy = $500,000. This new appropriation will work with the adult basic literacy, which is part of the Skilled Worker and Job Creation. $1.1 million solves the ESL adult education waiting list statewide.
  • The Skilled Workforce Training Fund includes most of the community college job training and tuition assistance.  Funding comes from gaming dollars. This amendment provides status quo funding for FY20 of $40.3 million, which matches the House and Governor’s level.


Regent Institutions: $12 million increase/total $575.4 million. House = $16 million. Gov = $18 million. If the increase was the full $18 million, the Regents indicated that tuition for UI and ISU would increase3% and UNI’s tuition would remain flat. At $12 million, it is estimated the regents will have to raise tuition an extra percent (to almost 4%) or a $300 annual increase for in-state students.

  • Schools for the Blind and Deaf: 2.06% increase (SSA rate).
  • STEM: $1 million increase (18% increase).


Policy and Statute Changes

  • National Guard Educational Assistance: Name change to “scholarship” and allows an additional 10 semester hours of undergraduate study for those pursuing a degree in a STEM field.
  • Future Ready: High Demand Jobs definition/criteria in Code.
  • 260E New Jobs Training: One-year language to help Lennox workers in Marshalltown.
  • 260I – GAP Program: Changes the criteria for determining financial need eligibility for assistance by reducing the time for which family income is considered and allows two certificate attainments in one career pathway.
  • High-Need Schools: Appropriation is pushed back to FY21. The $10 million never has been funded.
    [COMMITTEE 4/18: 13-6, party-line (Absent: Lykam, Mathis). FLOOR 4/23: 32-18, party-line]



SF 608—Economic Development Budget

SF 608, as amended by S-3214, is the agreed-upon GOP Economic Development Budget that appropriates $41.9 million from the General Fund to the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), the Iowa Finance Authority (IFA), the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) and Iowa Workforce Development (IWD). This is an increase of $1.68 million over the FY19 budget. This budget is $1.19 million less than FY17 before the mid-year cuts.

The bill appropriates $28.1 million from other funds. This is an increase of $1.25 million from FY19 budget. Other funds include Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund, IWD’s Special Contingency Fund and the Unemployment Insurance Reserve Interest.


General Fund Changes from FY19 budget

Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA)

DCA is receiving an increase of $275,000 over FY19. Senate previously passed an increase of $25,000 over FY19 to DCA for Cultural Trust Grants.

  • Historical Division: increase of $100,000 over FY19.
  • Arts Division: increase of $100,000 over FY19.
  • Cultural Trust Grants: increase of $75,000 over FY19. Cultural Trust Grants go to Iowa nonprofit arts, history, sciences and humanities organizations for education programs and support local endowment building.


Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA)

IEDA is receiving a decrease of $50,000 compared to FY19. The Senate previously passed a budget with a $25,000 increase over FY19.

  • The World Food Prize is reduced by $25,000 from FY19. Senate previously passed a $50,000 decrease (total $375,000).
  • The Council of Governments receives an increase of $75,000 over FY19. Senate previously passed a $25,000 increase ($275,000).


Iowa Finance Authority (IFA)

IFA receives status quo funding ($658,000) for the Home and Community-Based Services Rent Subsidy Program that provides rent assistance to individuals on one of the Medicaid Home and Community-based Services (HCBS) Waivers.


Public Employment Relations Board (PERB)

  • PERB is receiving status quo funding.


Iowa Workforce Development (IWD)

IWD is appropriated $138,000 less than FY19.

  • $12,000 increase to Workers’ Compensation Division.
  • $1.25 million General Fund decrease to workforce field offices.
  • $50,000 general increase to the Offender Reentry Program.
  • $150,000 decrease for the Future Ready Iowa Coordinator (now funded out of the Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund).
  • New Appropriation/FUTURE READY IOWA line item: There is an appropriation of $1.2 million for the Iowa Employer Innovation Fund, which was established in the Future Ready Iowa Act (2018). The funding will be used to match eligible employer moneys to expand opportunities for education and training leading to high-demand jobs and to encourage Iowa employers, community leaders and others to provide leadership and support for regional workforce talent pools throughout the state, and for Future Ready Iowa Education and outreach.
  • There is no appropriation to Home Base Iowa in the agreed-upon amendment. The Senate previously passed an appropriation of $100,000 to fund a position to assist with the support of Home Base Iowa activities.
  • This budget bill appropriates $1.7 million less to Iowa Workforce Development than FY17 before the mid-year budget cuts. Specifically, funding has been reduced to Workforce field offices and the Labor division (OSHA inspectors, wage and hour investigators, child labor investigators, etc.).


Board of Regents—General Fund

  • NEW Appropriation: $825,000 to Iowa State University for Biosciences Innovation Ecosystem and $275,000 to University of Iowa Biosciences Innovation Ecosystem. This is a total of $1.1 million. The Governor recommended $2 million and the Regents requested $4 million. The money will be used to establish a nationally renowned innovation ecosystem in Iowa bioscience platforms (biobased chemicals, precision and digital agriculture, vaccines and immunotherapeutics, and medical devices) to grow and diversify Iowa’s economy. The universities look to hire individuals, creating a funding program focused on early-stage technologies and creating an “Iowa Innovates” program to attract young innovators to Iowa. The Senate previously passed an appropriation of $750,000 and $275,000 for the two new line items (total of $1 million).
  • NEW Appropriation: $400,000 to University of Northern Iowa for equipment, technology and salaries to expand UNI’s additive manufacturing capabilities. The Senate previously passed $300,000 for this new line item.


Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund Appropriations (non-General Fund): $23.45 million

  • IEDA
    • NEW Appropriation/FUTURE READY IOWA line item: The bill appropriates $400,000 (from the Skilled Workers and Job Creation Fund) to the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Services to be used for establishing a volunteer mentor program to support implementation of the Future Ready Iowa Skilled Workforce Last-Dollar Scholarship program. The program was established in the Future Ready Iowa Act (2018).
    • NEW Appropriation: The bill appropriates $100,000 (from the Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund) to the Iowa Economic Development Authority for a Housing Needs Assessment Grant Program. IEDA will develop rules. The program is intended to provide small communities with hard data and housing-related information specific to the community being analyzed.
    • NEW Appropriation: The bill appropriates $300,000 (from the Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund) to the Iowa Economic Development Authority for Rural Innovation Grants Program. IEDA will develop rules.
    • High Quality Jobs: The bill appropriates $1.95 million less to the High Quality Jobs Program. This funding is from the Skilled Worker and Job Creation Fund (total: $11.7 million).The Senate previously passed a decrease of $1.85 million. This is $4.2 million less than FY17 before mid-year cuts ($15.9M).
      • New: IEDA may allocate up to $300,000 for supporting statewide worker education (will go to the Labor Center at University of Iowa.).
  • IWD
    • Future Ready Iowa Coordinator: $150,000 (this was previously funded out of General Fund in FY19).
  • ISU, UI and UNI are receiving status quo from the Skilled Worker Job Creation Fund for their economic development initiatives.
  • College Student Aid Commission: New Appropriation/Future Ready Iowa line item: The bill appropriates $1 million to establish a grant that would allow Iowans who left college with at least half the required credits for a bachelor’s degree in a high-demand field of study to enroll in a public or private four-year institution in Iowa to complete the degree. This program was established in the Future Ready Iowa Act (2018).


Other Funds

  • IWD is receiving an increase of $1.25 million from other funds (Unemployment Insurance Reserve Interest) from FY19 budget. IWD uses these funds for field office operations. With this increase in other funds and the decrease in the General Fund appropriation, the field offices are at status quo from FY19.
  • Tourism Marketing (from Adjusted Gross Gaming Receipts) is status quo from FY19 ($900,000) but still is $224,000 less from FY17.


New Policy

  • Adds four legislators as ex-officio members on the Iowa Finance Board.
    [4/24: 37-13 (Yes: Republicans, Dotzler, Giddens, Mathis, Quirmbach, J. Smith)]


SF 609—Agriculture and Natural Resources Budget

SF 609 is the FY20 budget for the Department  of Agriculture and the Department of Natural Resources.


FY19 Appropriation                         $39.4 million
FY20 Appropriation                         $42.7 million
Difference                                          $3.3 million
Percent Increase                              8.3 percent


Significant Funding Increases

Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS)

  • There is a $304,000 increase for IDALS operations in the Senate Republican’s proposed Agriculture & Natural Resources budget over FY19 appropriations. This provides funding to establish the industrial hemp program in IDALS and implement the Iowa Hemp Act (SF 599/HF 733).

Farmers with Disabilities

  • There is a $50,000 increase for the Farmers with Disabilities program over FY19, increasing the appropriation to $180,000. This money provides support to Easter Seals to administer the Rural Solutions program that assists farmers with physical or mental disabilities. The program offers agricultural worksite and home modification consultations, peer support, services for the family, information and referrals, and medical equipment loan services.


Foreign Animal Disease Response Fund

  • The budget increases funding for Foreign Animal Disease response by $250,000, doubling the appropriation to $500,000. This funding assists IDALS in developing response and preparedness efforts for future outbreaks of infectious animal diseases. IDALS, in cooperation with farm groups and the Livestock Health Advisory Council at Iowa State University, will develop measures to prepare for, prevent, control or eradicate the transmission and incidence of foreign animal diseases for livestock in the state.


Department of Natural Resources (DNR)

  • This budget increases funding for DNR by $366,000. This funding level is still $1 million less than the department received from the General Fund in FY16.

Iowa State University – Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

  • This budget increases funding for the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory at Iowa State University by $300,000.

University of Iowa – Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH)

  • This budget provides $130,000 for Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH) at the University of Iowa (UI). I-CASH was established by the Legislature in 1990 to coordinate prevention and education programs for Iowa’s agricultural community provided by UI, ISU, IDALS and the Iowa Department of Public Health.
  • UI has reduced funding for a number of legislatively-established centers at the university. I-CASH is required by Code to have a full-time director employed by the university. The funding in the bill is meant to fund the director position. The bill includes additional language that UI cannot further reduce support for I-CASH. This is similar to existing language in this budget regarding funding support for the Veterinary Diagnostic Lab at ISU.


Allocations of remaining WIRB funds

  • The bill provides for the allocation of leftover funds from the Watershed Improvement program (WIRB). The WIRB program was ended in 2017 and remaining funds in the WIRB account were appropriated to IDALS to be used for water quality improvement purposes.
  • The language in the compromise amendment will allocate $100,000 of that money for the farm demonstration program, with $1.7 million being allocated to the Water Quality Initiative.
  • This provides a one-time funding to boost spending on the water quality initiative. A portion can be used for salaries, providing more “boots on the ground” to help establish more locally-led watershed projects.


Other Significant Funding Issues

Resource Enhancement and Protection program (REAP)

  • The budget appropriates $12 million for REAP. This is $4 million below the amount appropriated in FY17 and $6 million below the highest funding levels for the program in FY 10. Unlike previous years, Republicans are not proposing to divert funding from REAP to backfill funding shortfalls for state parks operations and maintenance.
  • REAP funding is allocated under the formula to these separate accounts:
  • Open Spaces – Open spaces is used to permanently protect and develop Iowa’s public lands and waters. DNR also uses funds in this account to pay property taxes owed to counties for land that has been acquired by DNR.
  • County conservation boards – County conservation boards compete for grants that they can use to develop programing and public areas under their control.
  • Soil and water conservation – This money is divided between projects and practices funding. IDALS has used funding from this area in the past to support urban soil conservation and water quality projects.
  • City parks and open spaces – Cities compete for grants that they can use to develop public areas and amenities to promote outdoor recreation and natural habitat.
  • DNR Land Management – DNR uses these funds to manage state conservation lands and facilities.
  • Cultural Affairs – Grants for historical preservation and country schools.
  • In FY19, Republicans diverted $3 million from REAP to pay for state parks maintenance, repair and operations. REAP is a stand-alone program and should not be weakened so that Republicans can minimize the damaging cuts in their budget. The program has helped bring together a broad coalition of hunting, fishing, conservation, recreation and environmental organizations to push for projects that improve quality of life. Diverting money from one portion of the program hurts its effectiveness as a way to invest in Iowa’s future.


Major Language Changes/Budget Concerns

The bill does include some changes to current Code language. These changes include:

  • Technical fixes to reflect the transfer of the geological survey from DNR to UI.
  • Codifying past appropriations bill language providing that IDALS will administer biofuels auditing and administration programs to ensure motor fuel quality sold by retailers and renewable fuels producers.
  • Sunset language regarding the mandated collection program for mercury-containing thermostats after June 30, 2022.
  • Additional language that was not included in the Senate version authorizing the use of REAP funds available to DNR under the Open Spaces account for repairing, restoring or rehabilitating flood-damaged property under the jurisdiction of DNR. This language was added by the House in their version of the budget.
  • The bill will prohibit the use of the Agricultural Drainage Well program funding for the closure of wells that have not been registered with the DNR prior to January 1, 2019. Existing known wells are permitted through the DNR. The planned closure of all known wells is projected to be accomplished with the funding provided in this year’s budget and what was proposed in the Governor’s FY21 budget. Future wells or improved sinkholes would be eligible to receive financial assistance through other water quality programs. The final wells to be closed are being done in conjunction with other water quality improvement projects because the design for closure necessitates additional work beyond the simple closing of a well.

Under this budget, support for agriculture and natural resources in this state continues to suffer. Reduced funding has led to the elimination of successful programs and a large number of unfilled positions that should be providing services to Iowans. Cooperation between agriculture and natural resources is needed to move our state forward. This budget continues to pit them against each other.
[4/22: 33-16 (Yes: Republicans, Kinney, Quirmbach; Absent: Segebart)]


SF 615—Justice Budget

The Justice System appropriations bill appropriates a total of $583,791,690 from the state’s general fund for FY20. That is $12,980,505 over estimated FY19 ($570,811,185). Almost all departments and agencies are receiving an increased appropriation over FY19, which is intended to be salary adjustment money.


Justice system departments and agencies include:

  • Attorney General
  • Civil Rights Commission
  • Department of Corrections and Community Based Corrections
  • The Division of Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning of the Department of Human Rights
  • Public Defender Office, which includes Indigent Defense
  • Iowa Law Enforcement Academy
  • Board of Parole
  • Department of Public Defense (Iowa Guard)
  • Department of Public Safety (this includes the Iowa State Patrol and multiple other divisions)
  • Homeland Security and Emergency Management


FY19 Supplemental Appropriations in this bill:

  • $2.5 million for indigent defense
  • $295,982 for the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy for relocation expenses



  • Attorney General – General Office – increase of $77,768
    • Legal Services Poverty Grants (Legal Aid)– increase of $330,000
    • No increase for victim assistance grants.
  • Department of Corrections – increase of $4,138,534
    • Central office: $2,742,850
    • Ft. Madison – Iowa State Penitentiary: No increase
    • Anamosa: No increase
    • Iowa Medical and Classification Center (known as Oakdale, but located Coralville): $504,000 for pharmaceuticals
    • Newton Correctional Facility: $65,938 for a “revocation correctional counselor”
    • Mt. Pleasant: No increase
    • Rockwell City: No increase
    • Clarinda: No increase
    • Mitchellville: No increase
    • Ft. Dodge: No increase
    • Community Based Corrections District 1 (Northeast Iowa): $125,090 to fund a community treatment coordinator FTE
    • CBC District 2 (North Central Iowa): $70,351 to fund a community treatment coordinator FTE
    • CBC District 3 (Northwest Iowa ): $70,351 for community treatment coordinator FTE
    • CBC District 4 (Southwest Iowa): $70,351 for community treatment coordinator FTE
    • CBC District 5 (Polk County, surrounding counties and south central counties): $140,702 for two community treatment coordinator FTEs
    • CBC District 6: No increase
    • CBC District 7 (Eastern Iowa, including Scott County): $70,351 for community treatment coordinator FTE
    • CBC District 8 (Southeast Iowa): $278,550 for community treatment coordinator FTE and two probation and parole officer FTE positions previously funded by a grant.
  • Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning – increase of $16,989
    • Receives a new, separate line item of $140,000 for “a single grant to a program located in a city with a higher than average juvenile crime rate as determined by CJJP with a population greater than 80,000” (Davenport).


  • Iowa Law Enforcement Academy receives a general increase of $9,426
    • Increase of $729,460 for relocation expenses while the Academy building is renovated or replaced.  ILEA is renting apartments for cadets to live in during the renovation. Also, they may be using Upper Iowa University classroom space.
  • Public Defender: $449,840 increase
  • Indigent Defense: $3,116,000 increase. This is on top of the $2.5 million increase for FY19.
  • Board of Parole: $13,313 increase.
  • Department of Public Defense (Guard): $70,584 increase.
  • Homeland Security: $1,267 increase.
  • Department of Public Safety – increase of $3,847,834
  • Division of Criminal Investigation: $350,000 increase and five FTEs
  • Crime Lab: No increase
  • Narcotics Enforcement: $200,000 increase
  • Undercover Funds: No increase
  • Iowa State Patrol: $1.7 million and 10 FTEs increase
  • Firefighter training: No increase
  • Office to Combat Human Trafficking: No increase
  • Department-wide duties – New appropriation of $1,597,834. Intended for salary adjustment.


New language and language changes in the bill:

  • Requires the Attorney General to report all money settlement awards and court money awards made to the state. The AG must report which funds are designated to receive the moneys and under what legal authority the designation is being made.
  • Handcuffing the Attorney General: Prohibits the Attorney General from prosecuting actions and proceedings in a court, including filing amicus briefs outside of Iowa unless requested by the Governor, the Executive Council or the Legislature. The AG may defend in any court other than Iowa when in the AG’s judgment, the interest of the State requires, or when requested by the Governor, Executive Council or the Legislature.
  • Indigent Defense Hourly Rate Increase: The House increases the hourly rate for court appointed attorneys in criminal cases by $3 for each case type.
  • Public Safety Assessment: House prohibits the use of the Public Safety Assessment in pretrial hearings, and it may not be used until specifically authorized by the Legislature.
  • Sets up a fire service training revolving fund under the control of the Department of Public Safety. These monies come from fees paid for Fire Service Training classes. Iowa State University previously did the accounting, etc. relating to these fees, but ISU informed the state in the fall that they would no longer do it for the Fire Service Training Bureau.
  • OSHA settle agreement: Authorizes the Department of Corrections to use any FY19 appropriations to resolve a settlement agreement with Iowa OSHA relating to inadequate communication devices for staff at the Iowa State Penitentiary. The radios are estimated to cost about $1.5 million. The DOC has $700,000 savings from FY19 county confinement and federal prisoner appropriations that they will use to purchase new radios. Perhaps the general office appropriation will also be used to supplement the needed monies to purchase the radios. It is imperative that staff be able to communicate when there are attacks and other issues at the prison.
  • Public Defender Pilot Project: Allows the Public Defender Indigent Defense Division to continue its pilot project allowing indigent defendants to choose an eligible attorney to represent them. The pilot project is limited to four counties.
  • Public Safety Survivor Benefits Fund: Sets up a Public Safety Survivor Benefits Fund under the control of the Department of Public Safety for grants to assist survivors of peace officers and survivors of firefighters killed in the line of duty to help pay costs associated with accident or health care coverage. $100,000 of lottery revenues will be transferred each year to the public safety survivor benefits fund prior to deposit in the general fund.
    [4/24: 32-18, party-line]


SF 616—Judicial Budget

The House has essentially agreed to the Senate version of SF 616 with one minor change in the language relating to clerks of court offices. The language now says that “an office of the clerk of the district court shall be open regular courthouse hours.” The original language said that the clerk’s office had to be open consistent with the county office that is open the greatest number of hours.


  Estimated FY19        SF 616 SF 616 v. FY19
Judicial Branch – general $177,574,797 $181,126,293 $3,551,496
Jury Witness Fee Revolving fund       3,100,000       3,100,000                  0
Total Judicial $180,674,797 $184,226,293  $3,551,496


Percentage Increase………1.96%

The total Judicial Branch request was $7,271,627, which includes a 4% salary increase for judges.


Salaries for Judicial Officers: 

  • Establishes annual salary rates for all judicial officers and says that the salaries provided for in this section are to be paid from funds allocated to the Judicial Branch from the salary adjustment fund, but if that isn’t sufficient, from funds appropriated in this bill.
    [4/24: 35-15 (Yes: Republicans, Bisignano, Kinney, Mathis)]


HF 756 – Federal Block Grant bill

HF 756 appropriates federal funds made available from federal block grants and other non-state sources. The bill authorizes the receipt and expenditure of federal block grant funds totaling $360.9 million for Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 20 and $361.1 million for FFY21. The federal funding levels specified in the bill are based on projected spending authority yet to be authorized by Congress. Departments and agencies to receive funding include the Department of Public Health, Department of Human Services, Department of Justice, Governor’s Office of Drug Control, Division of Community Action Agencies in the Department of Human Rights, Iowa Economic Development Authority and Department of Transportation. The bill specifies procedures for prorating funds to various programs if the funding received is less or more than the amount appropriated. An amendment was adopted on the floor changing a Department of Human Services report date.
[4/22: 49-0 (Absent: Segebart)]


HF 765—RIIF Budget

HF 765, the Infrastructure and Capitals Appropriations, fully funds $42 million to the Environment First Fund and $3 million to the State Housing Trust Fund. It also appropriates $94.7 million for FY20 and $9.6 million FY21 from the Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund (RIIF) and the Technology Reinvestment Fund (TRF) as follows:




Water Quality: $5,200,000

Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Fund: $3,000,000



Community Based Corrections 6th District Fire Suppression System: $150,000


Cultural Affairs

Great Places: $1,000,000

Strengthening Communities Grants: $250,000


Iowa Economic Development Authority

Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) Grants: $5,000,000

Regional Sports Authorities: $500,000

World Food Prize Borlaug/Ruan Scholars: $300,000

Easter Seals of Iowa Independence Innovation Center: FY20 – $200,000; FY21 – $800,000

Vacant State Buildings Demolition Fund: $1,000,000; $1,000,000 in FY21 and FY 22

Vacant State Buildings Remediation Fund: $1,000,000; $1,000,000 in FY21 and FY 22


Human Services 

Nursing Home Improvements: $500,000


Iowa Finance Authority

State Housing Trust Fund additional funding: $50,000


Judicial Branch

Justice Centers: Courthouse furniture, equipment (Johnson, Dallas and Floyd counties): $193,620


Natural Resources

Lake Restoration and Water Quality: $9,600,000

Water Trails and Low Head Dam Grants: $500,000

State Park Infrastructure: $2,000,000


Public Defense

Facility, Armory Maintenance: $1,000,000

Readiness Centers modernization of operational and support facilities: $1,000,000

Camp Dodge infrastructure improvements: $250,000


Public Safety

Statewide Interoperable Communications System lease purchase payment: $3,719,355

Lab Liquid Chromatograph toxicology analysis equipment: $325,000

Explosives Trace Detector portable device: $29,000



Tuition Replacement: $28,098,870

Iowa School for the Deaf renovation of Long Hall: $3,000,000; FY21 – $1,325,000

University of Northern Iowa Industrial Technology Center: FY21 – $1,000,000


State Fair Authority

4-H Building remodeling on the Iowa State Fairgrounds: $500,000; FY21 – $4,500,000

Historical Building Task Force: $500,000



Recreational Trails: $1,500,000

Public Transit Vertical Infrastructure: $1,500,000

Railroad Revolving Loan Grant: $1,000,000

Commercial Service Air Vertical Infrastructure: $1,900,000

General Aviation Vertical Infrastructure Grants: $1,000,000



County Fairs infrastructure improvements (divided equally, $10,095 each): $1,060,000


Veterans Home

Iowa Veterans Home replacement of mechanical and electric systems: $6,134,840



Chief Information Officer

IT Consolidation: $1,000,000



Technology projects: $629,000



Statewide Ed Data Warehouse: $600,000

ICN Part III Maintenance/Leases: $2,727,000

IPTV Equipment replacement, tower, facility maintenance: $500,000


Homeland Security

Alert Iowa messaging system: $400,000


Human Rights

Criminal Justice Information System: $1,200,000

Justice Data Warehouse: $157,980


Human Services

Family and Children Services System: $5,525,660


Iowa Law Enforcement Academy

Technical upgrades: $15,000



Transparency Project: $45,000

Local Government Budget and Property Tax System: $120,000

Electronic Grant Management System: $50,000


Public Defender

State Public Defender technical projects: $50,000


Public Health

AMANDA Licensing System: $796,800


Public Safety

Virtual Archive Storage System: $290,000

Iowa State Patrol Post 16 Technology Upgrade: $250,000

Lab Management replacement of case management system: $300,000

  Lab Digital Evidence management and comparison system: $80,000


Veterans Home

Computer equipment: $5,000


HF 765 establishes the Historical Building Task Force to consider the feasibility, costs and possible options relative to construction of a new State Historical Museum on the State Fairgrounds to include options for relocating the collections stored in the current building and creating increased access to the collections to Iowans. The task force must submit an interim report to the Legislature by December 20, 2019, and a final report with its findings and recommendations by January 1, 2021.

The task force consists of:

  • One member appointed by the Iowa State Fair Board;
  • One member appointed by the Iowa State Fair Foundation;
  • One member appointed by the Department of Administrative Services;
  • One member designated as the facilities manager for facilities under control of the General Assembly;
  • One member appointed by the Director of the Department of Cultural Affairs;
  • One member appointed by the Governor.
  • Four legislators serving as ex officio members, appointed from each caucus.

The legislation specifies that all State buildings (except Board of Regents, Department of Transportation, Department of Public Defense and Department of Natural Resources facilities) are eligible for moneys in the Routine Maintenance Fund. Currently, expenditures apply to facilities under the control of the Department of Administrative Services.

Establishes a Vacant State Buildings Demolition Fund for grants to demolish vacant buildings owned by the State but no longer used for State purposes, and a Vacant State Buildings Rehabilitation Fund for loans to rehabilitate and redevelop vacant buildings owned by the State but not used for State purposes. These programs are administered by the Iowa Economic Development Authority.

HF 765 includes a new Code section (262.67) that sets matching fund requirements for RIIF appropriations  to the Board of Regents: University of Iowa — for every $3 appropriated, $2 must be provided from various funding sources by the University; Iowa State University — for every $3 appropriated, $2 must be provided from various funding sources by the University;  University of Northern Iowa — for every $4 appropriated, $1 must be provided from various funding sources by the University.

The bill also creates an On-Stream Impoundment Restoration Fund (new Iowa Code section 456A.33 — Watershed Projects), sets the eligibility criteria and goals, and requires the Department of Natural Resources to use funding criteria that favor projects that include at least a dollar-for-dollar match.
[4/22: 36-13 (Yes: Republicans, Boulton, Celsi, Lykam, Mathis, Ragan; Absent: Segebart)]