Rep. Tom Jeneary — April 1, 2021

Greetings from the Statehouse,

First off, I would like to thank all of you that attended my townhalls throughout the session this year. I gained more insight to issues and was more than happy to connect with those who didn’t wish to travel to Des Moines this year. This week is when the budget starts to come together and we begin to have an idea of what monies that we will have available for FY 2022.

Budget Discussions Begin

Thanks to responsible budgeting by the Legislature, Iowa was proud to be ranked number one most prepared to withstand the financial challenges of COVID-19 in the nation according to the nonpartisan Council of State Governments. Budgets rotate year to year for starting between the House and the Senate. This year the House of Representatives will submit the Ag & Natural Resources, Education, Justice Systems & Judicial Branch, Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund, and Federal Block Grants for consideration.

Iowa House Passes HF 756 – Firearm Omnibus Bill

Last week, I supported HF 756. The bill addressed many areas of gun law but the part that caught the most attention ended the requirement that a person have a permit to carry or purchase a firearm. Many have been spreading misinformation about the bill even though it passed with bi-partisan support. The misinformation spread is based on anti-2nd Amendment politics not on the actual language in the bill. With this bill, background checks are still required for long gun or handgun purchases at a retailer. These will be run through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NCIC). It should be noted that HF 756 will keep the permit option in place, but does not require a permit if a law-abiding Iowan wants to carry their firearm. However, in order to carry outside of Iowa, Iowans will still require a permit. HF 756 will also make it more difficult for felons and domestic abusers to subject to a background check for every firearms purchase. Current law only requires showing a permit issued in the last five years. The NCIC is updated immediately by state and federal agencies to have the most accurate information available regarding who can and cannot possess a firearm.

House to Consider Bills in Relation to the Missouri River

Senate File 184 and 185 are two pieces of legislation that repeal sections of Iowa Code concerning Missouri River compact authorities. Senate File 184, repeals the State Interagency Missouri River Authority which was established in 2002. As a result, Iowa became members in the Missouri River Association of States and Tribes (MoRAST), an organization of states to represent the interest of the states and tribes in the Missouri River Basin. However, in 2011 Iowa and Nebraska withdrew from MoRAST and it eventually disbanded. Similarly, Senate File 185, repeals the Missouri River Preservation and Land Use Authority. Originally, enacted to create and engage in planning for the preservation and beautification of the land adjacent to the Missouri River. However, the Authority hasn’t met since 1991. Iowa currently collaborates with the States of Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri and the Army Corps of Engineer’s Kansas City and Omaha Offices to prepare and plan for floods and the land adjacent to the Missouri River. Both these bills eliminate unnecessary Iowa Code that have become outdated.

Iowa Likely to Extend Tax Return Deadline

The Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service announced last week that the federal income tax filing due date for individuals will be automatically extended from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021. The IRS will be providing formal guidance soon. Individual taxpayers can also postpone federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year due on April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed.

Additionally, the Iowa Department of Revenue is likely to extend its income tax filing deadline again this year as a result of the pandemic. Iowa’s state income tax filing deadline is traditionally April 30. Iowa Department of Revenue has publicly confirmed that the state is likely to change that date but is waiting on more details from the IRS before finalizing its decision. Stay tuned to the Department’s website for details forthcoming.

As always if you have any questions, comments or concerns please reach out to me. Also, if you are in Des Moines during the session, please email me and I will try my best to meet with you as time allows.
Representative Tom Jeneary
Serving the Citizens of House District Five

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