Dems: Good bills signed into law

April 10, 2016

With the 2016 session moving toward adjournment, many bills are finding consensus in the Legislature and making their way to the Governor’s desk. New laws to boost our economy, honor military veterans, enhance public safety and improve quality of life include:


  • Tax credits to spur Iowa ag and biosciences – The U.S. market for chemicals is more than $250 billion a year. By substituting Iowa bio-based chemicals for petroleum in products, the Iowa economy has an opportunity to boom. SF 2300 will provide tax credits to industries that turn byproducts from biomass feedstock into higher-value chemicals. Tax credits will be available to startups and established businesses on a first-come, first-served basis starting next year.


  • Preventing drug overdose deaths – SF 2218 offers better access to a life-saving emergency drug that counteracts an opioid overdose, which killed 646 Iowans between 2009 and 2014. Health care professionals and emergency responders will be able to store the opioid antagonist and administer it in cases of an overdose. Family members, caregivers and others also may qualify to administer the emergency drug. The Iowa Department of Public Health will develop standards and procedures for prescribing, distributing and storing the antagonist, as well as for training people to administer it.


  • Providing a final resting place for all veteransHF 2266 addresses a problem that goes unnoticed by many: the unclaimed remains of veterans who died alone. We’ve created a process for funeral homes with unclaimed cremated remains to work with the Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs to identify them. If the remains of a veteran, their spouse or their dependent remain unclaimed, a veterans’ organization will make arrangements for inurnment at the Iowa Veterans Cemetery.


  • License plate decals to benefit nonprofitsHF 617 will give Iowa nonprofits a new way to promote their cause and raise money. The Iowa Department of Transportation will create a special license plate with a spot for an organization’s decal. The organization will design, produce and sell the decal, and keep the money they charge for it. Qualifying organizations include nonprofits that serve the community, contribute to the welfare of others and are not discriminatory.

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