Two weeks ago the Senate voted to set the Fiscal Year 2014 Allowable Growth rate at 4%. Some of us spoke out about the disservice to our students by setting the rate without education reform. We need to focus on getting to the root of the problems before we decide to increase funding. Two weeks later, the story has not changed. We cannot put the cart before the horse when it comes to committing to education funding in Iowa. Hastily setting the Allowable Growth rate two years out without knowing next year's rate is the wrong thing to do.
Senate Republicans will remain steadfast in working to empower and help our students prepare for the workplace upon graduation. We are also committed to enabling graduates to work competitively at a global level. We know that raising student achievement levels will directly contribute to these outcomes and we will continue to speak out against committing to fund a system in need of change.
Of course the major issues that will define this legislative session are still in front of us. Property tax reform, mental health redesign and appropriations are still works in progress that will provide for lively debate in the weeks ahead. And a few other issues will present themselves as time goes on.
This Saturday, February 16, I will be in Centerville at 10:00 am for a forum at the Chariton Valley Planning office at 308 North 12th. The following Saturday, February 23, I will be in Oskaloosa for Eggs and Issues at 8:30 am at Smokey Row, and also in Albia at the Farm Bureau office at 11:00 am. Please take advantage of these opportunities to visit with your elected legislators.
Feel free to contact me regarding issues that are important to you.
Senator Ken Rozenboom