Legislators Answer Questions Heading Into Funnel Week

Oskaloosa, Iowa – The area’s delegation to the Iowa Legislator took part in Eggs and Issues on Saturday morning.

Those participants included R – Holly Brink and R – Dustin Hite from the Iowa House, and Iowa Senator R – Ken Rozenboom.

The forum, customarily held in Smokey Row, has been moved to a virtual experience, with members of the public asking questions via the live stream on Mahaska Chamber and Development and Oskaloosa News Facebook pages.

The first question asked came from Mahaska County resident Kathryn Kaul-Goodman regarding legislation to eliminate professors’ tenure at public universities.

Rep. Dustin Hite said that the bill has its roots in regent universities and professors allegedly pushing political agendas upon students, particularly against conservative viewpoints.

Hite said the bill has created conversations as to the role of regent universities. “simply eliminating may not be the answer. It’s certainly open to conversations.”

Sen. Ken Rozenboom said that a year ago, he served on a committee “that dealt with political bias seeping into grading.”

“In that meeting, the college establishment denied that ever took place. It just didn’t happen, and I was assured of that several times,” said Rozenboom. Then we saw those egregious violations of constitutional rights for our students take place at all three of our regent universities.”

Rozenboom said he was assigned to the subcommittee and “got to have the exact same people in the room that I had a year ago, who all said there’s no problem; who denied there was any bias on campus.”

Rozenboom said the conversation had been started and credited the university presidents that stepped up knowing there were egregious violations. “I think the Board of Regents has stepped up, but we’re going to keep our eye on that because we can’t have a repeat of what happened this year.”

Sen. Ken Rozenboom has been working on exploring the deer population in Iowa.

Ken Allsup with Oskaloosa News asked Rozenboom about that bill and the economic impact of deer hunting versus increased insurance costs and injury and death to drivers of Iowa’s roads.

Rozenboom, who sits on the Environmental Committee for the past nine years, says, “I’ve worked closely with the DNR. I’ve had questions about this every year, and frankly, we don’t seem to be making any progress.”

Rozenboom filed Senate File 427 relating to deer population management. “We’re taking a hard look at how we can more effectively get rid of antlerless deer at the appropriate time to reduce the population.”

The bill calls on the DNR to conduct an environmental and economic impact assessment of the overpopulation of deer. “They can’t do that in a vacuum,” said Rozenboom, who explained the department must also work with Iowa State University, and Iowa Department of Transportation, and the insurance division. “So we can get a broader view of deep populations and how they impact not just hunters… but how they impact each one of us.”

Other topics discussed were election reform, legalizing marijuana, local control for school boards and cities, roads, and the bottle bill.

Watch the video for the full conversation.

Posted by on Mar 4 2021. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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