12 Beaches with an E. Coli-related Advisory: Backbone Beach (Dundee, Delaware County, IA) Beed's Lake Beach (Hampton, Franklin County, IA) Denison Beach (Black Hawk Lake, Lake View, Sac County, IA) Emerson Bay Beach (West Okoboji Lake, Milford, Dickinson County, IA) George Wyth Beach (Waterloo, Black Hawk County, IA) Lake Darling Beach (Brighton, Washington County, IA) Lake MacBride Beach (Solon, Johnson County, IA) Lower Pine Lake Beach (Eldora, Hardin County, IA) McIntosh Woods Beach (Clear Lake, Ventura, Cerro Gordo County, IA) Prairie Rose State Beach (Harlan, Shelby County, IA) Rock Creek Beach (Kellogg, Jasper County, IA) Union Grove Beach (Gladbrook, Tama County, IA)
2020 Legislative Session Recap: Victories in Challenging Times
Iowa’s 2020 Legislative Session will go down in history as one filled with promise, but ultimately fraught with uncertainty, change, and strangely enough, status quo. There was promise in the Governor’s Invest in Iowa Act. Clean energy received meaningful and positive action. The Governor signed historic legislation on police reform. But when the dust of the frantic final weeks settled, many things remained the same: no change on felon voting rights. Continued focus on abortion access. No new money for natural resource efforts.
When the session came to a close on June 14, many things looked different than expected at the start of the year. January opened with excitement as the Governor pledged funds for IWILL, Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy. Our water program staff dug into this historic opportunity, providing draft bill language and making recommendations to the Governor’s team on ways to improve the policy for the benefit of Iowa’s natural resources. Late February we saw the fruit of months of effort by the energy program to build a net metering coalition for solar customers with the successful passage of SF 583.
As IEC members and supporters crowded the Rotunda of the Capitol for Environmental Lobby Day on March 11, attendees and legislators were cautious but not overly concerned about Covid-19. By the following Monday, however, the state legislature suspended all activity. The next eleven weeks were a time of waiting and watching as health officials and state leaders focused on keeping Iowa safe.
The Legislature resumed June 3 with a goal of a short session to finalize a FY 2021 budget and wrap up any important loose ends. Twelve days later they closed a rapid-fire session marked by lots of action, but limited public access. IEC supporters and members remained engaged throughout, taking action when asked and doing their part to keep environmental issues part of the discussion. There were some important wins. There were some losses. And there were some actions that will wait to be debated for another year.
Continue reading our legislative recap to learn more about the status of specific legislation, including IEC's successful lobbying for a REAP extension, plus funding for DNR and water quality efforts, the Invest in Iowa Act, and more.