Iowa Senate Update: November 2023

What’s Important to You for 2024? The 2024 legislative session is right around the corner, and the Senate Democratic caucus is now crafting our agenda to serve Iowans just like you. Please take a moment to fill out our brief survey to let us know your top priorities for our ...

What’s Important to You for 2024?

The 2024 legislative session is right around the corner, and the Senate Democratic caucus is now crafting our agenda to serve Iowans just like you. Please take a moment to fill out our brief survey to let us know your top priorities for our community and the state of Iowa.

Your input helps us respond to the needs of our shared community.

Honoring our Vets, on Veterans Day and Always

This Saturday, thank a veteran.

Veterans Day is an opportunity to celebrate veterans for their service and pay respect to the sacrifices they and their families have made for our country.

Across Iowa and especially in the Capitol, there’s more we can do to support veterans – particularly those facing emergency needs. That’s why Senate Democrats have advanced legislation to fully fund the Veterans Trust Fund, so that no veteran goes without access to emergency medical care and equipment, home and vehicle repairs, or counseling.

Senate Republicans should follow the House’s lead this coming session and join Democrats in advancing support for veterans in their times of need. Without action, veterans could be turned away due to underfunding for this critical service.

Quick Updates

  • Virtual College Coaches: Does your child need help applying for college? Do they have questions about their FAFSA? The Bureau of Iowa College Aid’s Virtual College Coach gives students personalized assistance with all of their college questions. Students can also schedule one-on-one virtual appointments to get assistance filing the FAFSA, completing college applications, finding scholarships, and more. Learn more here.
  • Iowa history, renovated. The State Historical Building of Iowa, Museum & Research Center has officially reopened after a five-year renovation. The new space features a bright new atrium with views of the Iowa State Capitol and significant infrastructure improvements to provide a safer and more secure facility to preserve and share Iowa’s historical exhibits, artifacts, state archives, and records. Public visiting hours are Tuesday-Friday from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. Click here for more information.
  • More funding for roadway safety. The Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau has announced $11 million in new federal grants to improve roadway safety through new traffic equipment, education, and enforcement projects. Funding will be distributed to law enforcement agencies as well as partners including the Iowa Bicycle Coalition, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the Iowa Restaurant Association, and Lutheran Services in Iowa.
  • Find an Affordable Health Care Plan. An open enrollment period is now underway in the ACA marketplace. This is an opportunity for ACA members to review and potentially change their health insurance plan – and for those in need of insurance to find an affordable plan. You can visit to view available health insurance options. The open enrollment period for full 2024 coverage will be open until Dec. 15th.
  • Choose Iowa Grants. Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is offering Choose Iowa value-added grants to expand the availability of Iowa-grown, Iowa-raised, and Iowa-made foods. The grants match up to $25,000 per project to help farmers, businesses, and non-profits increase or diversify their agricultural products. Click here to learn more and apply.
  • October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month.  Parents can talk with their kids about their school and online life, and the roles children can play in bullying. Parents are the main role models for their children and can model healthy behavior. Learning how to best address, prevent, and respond to bullying situations is key to keeping youth safe from bullying. Learn more at
  • Student Loan Payments: Many student loan repayments were put on hold during the Covid pandemic but are resuming this month. It’s never too early to understand how student loans may affect your financial future by learning you how much you owe and the terms of repayment. Filling out the Annual Student Loan Acknowledgement can help you better understand your responsibilities as a borrower and helps you plan to repay any student loans you may have once you finish your degree.
  • All Iowa Reads: Established in 2003, All Iowa Reads (AIR) is a program sponsored by the State Library of Iowa encouraging Iowans to come together in their communities to read and talk about a single book in the same calendar year. The 2024 All Iowa Reads books are:
    • Adult Title: “The Seed Keeper” by Diane Wilson. A haunting novel spanning several generations, “The Seed Keeper” follows a Dakhóta family’s struggle to preserve their way of life, and their sacrifices to protect what matters most.
    • Teen Title: “Hollow Fires” by Samira Ahmed. A powerful, gripping YA novel about the insidious nature of racism, the terrible costs of unearthing hidden truths, and the undeniable power of hope.
    • Children’s Title: “Tumble” by Celia Perez. From the award-winning author of “The First Rule of Punk and Strange Birds,” “Tumble” is a dazzling novel about a young girl who collects the missing pieces of her origin story from the family of legendary luchadores she’s never met.
  • Watch the Supreme Court: The Iowa Supreme Court will hear multiple arguments this month to decide how far to extend legislative Republicans’ roadblocks against victims suffering negligent medical care. While most of the focus has been on the potentially unconstitutional limits on monetary damages, other highly technical requirements of the legislation could prevent victims from getting justice entirely. The issue will be front and center for the High Court this month.

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