Rozenboom Opens Senate Session With Prayer

Oskaloosa, Iowa – Iowa Senator Ken Rozenboom is preparing for the upcoming legislative session where he serves the constituents of Iowa Senate District 40.

As the Iowa Senate gaveled into session for 2021, Rozenboom lead the chamber in prayer.

The Iowa Legislature is legally bound not to spend more than 99 percent of the tax revenue that will come into the state. The Republican lawmaker points towards his and his colleagues’ policies because they are in good financial condition.

In an interview before Christmas, Rozenboom spoke with Oskaloosa News about the upcoming session.

“Right now, we’re actually in great shape,” Rozeboom says. “We, of course, have a balanced budget. We have our emergency funds full.”

In a recent Iowa Watch article, Rozenboom was quoted as saying the general fund appropriations to the Iowa DNR are “too low and have been too low for a number of years.”

In an interview with Oskaloosa News, Rozenboom says that usage of the state parks increased significantly during the past year, “and yet we don’t have any more park rangers and other personnel to handle that increased traffic.”

Rozenboom sits on the budget committees that fund the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Department of Agriculture. “We get about four-tenths of one percent of the entire state budget,” explained Rozenboom of the problem the departments face currently.

“I think it surprises most people that they aren’t funded to higher degrees than they are,” explained Rozenboom of the challenges faced in preparing the budgets for those two agencies.

For comparison, education in the state of Iowa, up to 54 percent of the budget is utilized to fund those institutions.

Rozenboom says he will look more closely into the DNR budget to revisit and rework and “look at all of that again. ”

For Rozenboom, celebrating the state parks was important as the state celebrated 100 years of the Iowa park system. The pandemic caused many of the celebrations and events to be scaled down significantly.

For Iowans, the pandemic has caused additional mental and substance abuse issues to become more of a problem. Rozenboom says the state had already put in additional resources, like emergency access centers, and an increase to support children’s mental health issues.

As for the funding for education during the pandemic, Rozenboom says it’s important to support education efforts. “We’ve always increased every year. We’ve increased K through 12 funding. I would anticipate that we will again this year.”

When it comes to the universities, “I will tell you that we’re going to take a closer look at some of the concerns we have with them.”

“All three of our regent universities stubbed their toe pretty badly by not respecting first amendment rights and student’s constitutional rights,” added Rozenboom. “It’s not acceptable.”

Posted by on Jan 12 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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