Veterans Affairs Committee – Week 8, 2021


SF 510 – Frequency of card tournaments for veterans’ organizations

SF 510 (SSB 1143) allows card game tournaments conducted by a qualified veterans organization (e.g., AmVets, VFW) to be held on a weekly basis. Currently, these organizations are limited to two card tournaments per month. The bill eliminates the per-month maximum, but prohibits holding a card tournament within six calendar days of another card tournament. This modification allows groups to promote and conduct a gathering that is held on the same day or night every week.
[3/1: short form]

SF 511 – IVH Commandant appointment

SF 511 (SSB 1097) relates to the appointment and term of service of the Iowa Veterans Home (IVH) Commandant. It sets a limit of four years for a person to serve as Commandant, and prohibits any person appointed prior to July 1, 2021, from serving as Commandant after July 1, 2021, until that person is reappointed by the Governor and reconfirmed by the Senate.

Democrats maintain that the Governor, who already has the power to “hire and fire,” has publicly and privately expressed her support of the current Commandant, Timon Oujiri. They referenced a letter from the Iowa Commission of Veterans Affairs Chairperson urging the Veterans Affairs Committee to vote “no” on this bill, stating the proposal does not improve or benefit the residents, staff or community at the Iowa Veterans Home. DAV-Iowa, American Legion of Iowa, and the Vietnam Veterans of America State Council also oppose the bill. There is no House companion.
[3/1: 7-4, party-line (No: Democrats)]