607, 2020

ICC Newsletter – July 6, 2020

The four Catholic bishops of Iowa are calling upon the U.S. Senate to pass legislation to protect DACA recipients. In a statement released today, the bishops said, “These young people entered the U.S. with their [...]

107, 2020

ICC Newsletter, July 1, 2020

The end of June usually means the release of several decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court and this year is no exception. Yesterday the Court issued its decision in “Espinoza vs. Montana Department of Revenue,” [...]

2506, 2020

ICC Newsletter, June 25, 2020

LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST BILL REQUIRING A WAITING PERIOD BEFORE ABORTION Planned Parenthood and the ACLU of Iowa have filed a lawsuit in Johnson County to stop the “24-hour waiting period before an abortion” bill recently [...]

1606, 2020

ICC Newsletter, June 16, 2020

The Iowa legislative session ended Sunday afternoon as the state “reopens” in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and protests continue on racial and justice issues. Unfortunately, the Senate failed to take up House Joint [...]

706, 2020

ICC Newsletter, June 7, 2020

The Iowa Legislature has picked up where it left off after a three-month pause due to the coronavirus. Here’s a report from last week’s action on some bills of interest to the Iowa Catholic Conference: [...]

2905, 2020

ICC Newsletter, May 29, 2020

LEGISLATURE SCHEDULED TO RE-CONVENE ON WEDNESDAY The Iowa Legislature is scheduled to come back into session next Wednesday, June 3. Some predict that the legislature will work for about 10 days on budget bills and [...]

1205, 2020

ICC Newsletter, May 12, 2020

The U.S. Catholic bishops have issued several action alerts asking for contacts with Congress related to the COVID-19 crisis. You can find the first two action alerts at https://votervoice.net/USCCB/home: Increasing the SNAP (food stamp) benefit. [...]

3004, 2020

ICC Newsletter, April 30, 2020

IOWA BISHOPS ISSUE LETTER ON SUNDAY MASSES DURING PANDEMIC Earlier this week Gov. Kim Reynolds lifted restrictions against some public gatherings, including religious assemblies. The Catholic bishops of Iowa have decided it would be most [...]

2104, 2020

ICC Newsletter, April 21, 2020

We are praying for you and your family during this time. Click here for a link to the diocesan websites to learn more about streaming Masses and other spiritual opportunities. Your diocese and local parish [...]

704, 2020

ICC Newsletter, April 7, 2020

Gov. Reynolds has issued a new proclamation closing additional businesses, including mall stores that can only be reached from the inside, social and fraternal clubs, bingo, gaming and music stores, playgrounds and amusement parks through [...]

2903, 2020

ICC Newsletter, March 29, 2020: Congress passes relief package

Many parishes are offering Masses and other spiritual resources online. Click here for a link to the diocesan web pages or updates. Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a new proclamation on Thursday suspending elective and nonessential medical [...]

1703, 2020

ICC Newsletter, March 17, 2020

The Iowa Legislature is taking a break until at least April 15 following passage early this morning of a supplemental budget bill, Senate File 2408. Among other provisions, the bill appropriates $20 million in emergency [...]

1503, 2020

ICC Newsletter, March 15, 2020: COVID-19 Updates

LEGISLATIVE SESSION SUSPENDED FOR AT LEAST 30 DAYS The Iowa legislative session will be suspended for a minimum of 30 days. The decision was made by state leaders in consultation with the Department of Public [...]

803, 2020

ICC Newsletter, March 9, 2020

LAST WEEK AT THE STATE CAPITOL Several bills of interest were moving through the chambers last week, including two bills supported by the Iowa Catholic Conference: House File 2259 passed the House. It would allow [...]

103, 2020

ICC Newsletter – March 2, 2020

STATEHOUSE HAPPENINGS The General Assembly spent most of last week debating bills on the floor of the chambers after spending several weeks doing committee work. Several events of note also took place at the Capitol, [...]

2402, 2020

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 24, 2020

Last Friday at the State Capitol was the first legislative “funnel” deadline. If a bill has not been passed by a committee, it is considered dead for the session. This rule does not apply to [...]

1602, 2020

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 17, 2020

There is a blizzard of subcommittee and committee meetings taking place at the State Capitol as legislators rush to push through their bills. This Friday, Feb. 21, is the first legislative deadline where non-budget or [...]

1002, 2020

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 10, 2020

The next couple of weeks will feature a flurry of activity at the State Capitol as the first legislative “funnel” deadline hits on Feb. 21. Bills must pass out of their first committee by that [...]

302, 2020

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 3, 2020

PROTECTING THE SAFETY NET FOR LOWER-INCOME PEOPLE Subcommittees in the Iowa House and Senate considered bills last week to increase the frequency and intensity of income verification for people who receive government benefits such as [...]

2601, 2020

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 27, 2020

‘PROTECT LIFE’ AMENDMENT PASSES COMMITTEE Senate Joint Resolution 21, the “Protect Life” amendment to clarify that a right to abortion is not guaranteed by the State of Iowa Constitution, passed the Senate State Government on [...]

1901, 2020

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 20, 2020

The 2020 session of the 88th Iowa General Assembly convened last week. Gov. Kim Reynolds delivered her Condition of the State address last Tuesday and announced an “Invest in Iowa Act.” It includes a sales [...]

1001, 2020

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 10, 2020

The Catholic bishops have released a statement in support of a constitutional amendment to clarify that a right to abortion is not guaranteed by the State of Iowa’s Constitution. The bishops said, “The dignity of [...]

1812, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 18, 2019

This fall the Iowa Catholic Conference has been working with legislators and others on several issues of concern identified by the bishops. A top priority is encouraging the Legislature to pass a “Protect Life” amendment [...]

1111, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 11, 2019

USCCB LAUNCHES CIVILITY EFFORT       As campaigning by presidential candidates takes place across Iowa, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is launching a year-long initiative that invites Catholics to model civility, [...]

2609, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Sept. 26, 2019

‘WORLD DAY FOR MIGRANTS AND REFUGEES’ TO BE CELEBRATED SUNDAY The Vatican’s World Day for Migrants and Refugees will be held this Sunday, Sept. 29. The theme for the celebration is, “It is not just [...]

2908, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 29, 2019

BISHOPS HIGHLIGHT 1919 PROGRAM OF SOCIAL RECONSTRUCTION For Labor Day, the U.S. Catholic bishops have issued a statement on the one-hundred-year-old United States Bishops’ Program of Social Reconstruction. The Program was published in 1919 after [...]

1408, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 14, 2019

BISHOPS EXPRESS CONCERN ABOUT RACISM AND MASS SHOOTINGS Bishops from three committees at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) expressed their deep concern on Aug. 8 about racism and xenophobia that apparently motivated [...]

1707, 2019

ICC Newsletter – July 17, 2019

BISHOPS URGE RECONSIDERATION OF ENFORCEMENT-ONLY IMMIGRATION POLICIES Immigration policy continues to be a topic of great public interest. The pictures of the father and his daughter who drowned in the Rio Grande, as well as [...]

1006, 2019

ICC Newsletter – June 10, 2019

HOUSE PASSES DREAM ACT The U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Dream and Promise Act of 2019 (H.R. 6) on June 4 by a vote of 237-187. Click here for more information on the [...]

2905, 2019

Bishops review 2019 Iowa legislative session

Now that Gov. Reynolds has completed her signing of bills, the bishops of Iowa have released a statement on the 2019 legislation session. Here is the full text: We, the members of the Iowa Catholic [...]

2904, 2019

ICC Newsletter – April 29, 2019

The Iowa Legislature concluded its 2019 session on Saturday. In the closing days, the Legislature passed a tax “clean-up” bill, House File 779, which included a $2 million increase in the School Tuition Organization tax [...]

2204, 2019

ICC Newsletter – April 22, 2019

The staff of the Iowa Catholic Conference wishes you a blessed and prayerful Easter season! It looks like the Iowa Legislature is entering its last week or two of work for the year. We are [...]

1404, 2019

ICC Newsletter – April 15, 2019

The pace of debate on the floor of the Iowa Legislature slowed down some last week as leaders from both chambers spent time behind closed doors working on the budget. The Iowa Catholic Conference has [...]

704, 2019

ICC Newsletter – April 8, 2019

LEGISLATURE ADDRESSES FUNDING FOR NONPUBLIC SCHOOL STUDENTS The education funding bill, HF 758, passed the House and goes to the Senate. It appropriates $954 million from the general fund to the Department for the Blind, [...]

3103, 2019

ICC Newsletter, March 31, 2019

Budget bills for state departments are being introduced at the Legislature, which is usually a sign that the session is heading into its last month or so. House Joint Resolution 14, the proposed constitutional amendment [...]

2403, 2019

ICC Newsletter – March 24, 2019

The second “funnel” deadline in the Iowa Legislature is approaching. To survive, a bill must have passed one chamber and through a committee in the opposite chamber by April 5. (This does not apply to [...]

1703, 2019

ICC Newsletter, March 17, 2019

The Iowa Catholic Conference is asking you to contact your legislator on two issues of concern: opposing the death penalty and support for parents of nonpublic school students. Many legislators are hearing from constituents about [...]

1003, 2019

ICC Newsletter – March 10, 2019

Last Friday was the first legislative “funnel” deadline when bills needed to be passed out of committee in order to be considered for the rest of the year. This does not apply to budget or tax-related [...]

303, 2019

ICC Newsletter, March 3, 2019

FIRST LEGISLATIVE DEADLINE THIS FRIDAY This Friday is the first legislative funnel deadline when bills need to be passed out of committee in order to be considered for the rest of the year. However, this does [...]

2402, 2019

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 24, 2019

CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATOR IN OPPOSITION TO GUN AMENDMENT Several bills providing for additional rights for persons to carry guns are advancing in the Legislature. The ICC encourages you to contact your legislators in opposition to [...]

1702, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 17, 2019

Every person is made in the image of God and has certain rights and responsibilities. One of those responsibilities is to participate in the public life of the community. House Study Bill 68 is a [...]

1002, 2019

ICC Newsletter, Feb. 10, 2019

You can find contact information for your federal and state legislators at www.votervoice.net/icc/home or on the Votervoice app. A proposed amendment to make our state Constitution “abortion-neutral,” Senate Joint Resolution 9, passed a Senate subcommittee last [...]

302, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 3, 2019

A bill to address racial profiling in Iowa’s justice system was approved by an Iowa Senate subcommittee last week. The ICC testified in support of the bill. Senate Study Bill 1038 is now eligible for [...]

2701, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 27, 2019

Because of the Martin Luther King holiday and the snow, it was a little quieter week at the Capitol than normal. Senate Study Bill 1017, a bill allowing guns in vehicles in school parking lots, [...]

2101, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 21, 2019

The Legislature will come back into session tomorrow after taking a break for today’s Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Regarding Dr. King, the president of the USCCB, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, said: “This year, [...]

1001, 2019

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 10, 2019

The 88th Iowa General Assembly is set to convene next Monday, Jan. 14. Legislative leaders will address the chambers about their plans for the session. On Tuesday, Gov. Kim Reynolds will present her budget and [...]

2012, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 20, 2018

We are pleased to report the First Step Act has passed the Senate and House and is headed to President Trump for his signature. Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa was a key leader in getting the [...]

612, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 6, 2018

As we approach the end of the year, the federal government is working to wrap up consideration of several issues that affect human life and dignity here and around the world. We encourage you to [...]

1211, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 12, 2018 – Election recap

More than 1.3 million people voted in Iowa on Tuesday, nearly 61 percent of the electorate. It’s the highest number of voters for a mid-term election ever in the state. However, the more things change, [...]

2210, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Oct. 22, 2018

Voting has begun in Iowa. Now is the time for you to choose! In their Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics statement, the Iowa Catholic bishops say, “There will never be a perfect candidate, but that’s [...]

2509, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Sept. 25, 2018

To receive occasional alerts from the Iowa Catholic Conference, text the word IOWACATHOLIC to 50457. DON’T CUT SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE TO LOW-INCOME STUDENTS The Iowa Catholic Conference is encouraging you to contact your members of Congress [...]

2408, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 24, 2018

BISHOPS RESPOND TO ABUSE SCANDAL The four Catholic bishops of Iowa are responding to the Holy Father’s call for the Church to join in acts of prayer and fasting in “combating all forms of abuse [...]

2307, 2018

ICC Newsletter – July 23, 2018

ARE 529 PLANS RIGHT FOR YOU? Federal and state “529” college savings plans have been expanded to provide a tax benefit to parents paying tuition at K-12 Catholic schools in Iowa. Our partners at Iowa ACE [...]

207, 2018

ICC Newsletter – July 2, 2018

Iowa Supreme Court strikes down abortion reflection period By a vote of 5-2, the Iowa Supreme Court has struck down a provision providing for a three-day reflection period before an abortion can take place. We [...]

406, 2018

ICC Newsletter – June 4, 2018

Primary elections are being held tomorrow (Tuesday, June 5) for political parties to select their candidates for office. Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. Voter registration or a change in party affiliation are [...]

1405, 2018

ICC Newsletter – May 14, 2018

A few quick updates: The U.S. Catholic bishops’ social justice department has issued an action alert regarding the federal Farm Bill. Please contact your member of Congress today at www.votervoice.net/usccb/home and ask them to insist on changes [...]

705, 2018

ICC Newsletter – May 7, 2018: Legislative session ends

The Iowa legislature adjourned “sine die” on Saturday, ending the 2018 session of the 87th General Assembly. We are very grateful that many of you contacted your legislator during the past few days. The Iowa [...]

2904, 2018

ICC Newsletter – April 30, 2018

The Iowa legislative session is in overtime as lawmakers are into their third week of not receiving their per diem expense checks. However, the session may end this week as Gov. Kim Reynolds and House [...]

2204, 2018

ICC Newsletter – April 23, 2018

It appears that Republican leaders in the Iowa House and Senate are getting closer to an agreement on tax reform and the state budget. The House is proposing an increase in state spending of $235 [...]

1504, 2018

ICC Newsletter – April 16, 2018

The Iowa Catholic Conference was disappointed that Gov. Reynolds signed the immigration enforcement bill, Senate File 481, last week. The Catholic bishops of Iowa had sent a letter to the governor asking for a veto. [...]

904, 2018

ICC Newsletter – April 9, 2018

Senate File 481, the immigration enforcement bill, passed the Iowa House and Senate last week and is going the governor for her signature. The Iowa Catholic Conference opposed the bill. Among other provisions, the bill [...]

204, 2018

ICC Newsletter – April 2, 2018

Typically Holy Week is a slower week at the State Capitol. That was true this year as well. Three issues of interest did not see any floor or committee action last week: The good news [...]

2503, 2018

ICC Newsletter – March 26, 2018

All parents, regardless of address or income, deserve the ability to make choices in education that reflect their basic convictions and aspirations for their child. A new bill to provide for Education Savings Grants, Senate [...]

1803, 2018

ICC Newsletter – March 19, 2018

The second legislative deadline - called the “second funnel” – was last Friday. Only bills that have passed a committee in both chambers remain eligible, except for budget- and tax-related legislation. Senate File 359 made [...]

1103, 2018

ICC Newsletter – March 12, 2018

The U.S. Congress will decide soon, most likely this week, whether to include the Conscience Protection Act (CPA) in must-pass government funding legislation. Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, chair of the U.S. Conference [...]

403, 2018

ICC Newsletter – March 5, 2018

IMMIGRATION ISSUES Thanks to those of you who were able to call Congress in support of Dreamers. More than 48,000 calls were made to the DC offices of U.S. Senators and Representatives. Also last week, [...]

2502, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 26, 2018

First, a reminder. Today, Monday, is the U.S. bishops’ national Call-in Day for Dreamers. You are asked to contact your members of Congress to help the nearly 1.8 million “Dreamers,” who are young people without [...]

1902, 2018

Iowa Catholic Conference Newsletter – Feb. 19, 2018

The first legislative “funnel” deadline was last Friday. That means any bill that has not passed out of a committee by now is, in theory, dead for the session, with the exception of budget and [...]

1102, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 11, 2018

The first Iowa legislative deadline is coming up. Any non-budget bill has to pass out of a committee in one chamber by Friday to remain eligible. Legislation addressing one of the ICC’s major priorities was [...]

402, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 4, 2018

There was some good news at the State Capitol last week. While the House’s bill to bring back the death penalty, House Study Bill 569, passed out of a subcommittee, it looks like there aren’t [...]

2801, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 28, 2018

Activity is picking up at the State Capitol as several issues of concern to Catholics are being considered. There is a subcommittee meeting scheduled in the House on Tuesday to consider Senate File 481. This [...]

2101, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 21, 2018

It was another short week at the state Capitol as Iowans celebrated the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday last Monday. A bill to bring back the death penalty was introduced Thursday in the Iowa Senate. [...]

1401, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 14, 2018

The 2018 session of the General Assembly convened last Monday. Much of the week was taken up by reports to the legislature by the executive branch, courts and the Iowa National Guard. The legislature will [...]

401, 2018

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 4, 2018: Legislative session to convene next week

The second session of the 87th Iowa General Assembly is set to convene on Monday, when legislative leaders will address the chambers to talk about their plans for the session. Coming up on Tuesday is [...]

1812, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 22, 2017

We at the Iowa Catholic Conference are very grateful for your participation in our legislative network and willingness to take action on important concerns. We pray you have a Happy Thanksgiving! USCCB PRESIDENT CALLS FOR [...]

1812, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 10, 2017

As often happens at the end of the year, Congress is addressing some important issues related to human life and dignity. Many families affected by migration here in the United States need our support and [...]

2709, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Sept. 27, 2017

        Pope Francis today launched a worldwide, two-year “Share the Journey” campaign calling on Catholics to ‘encounter’ migrants and refugees in an effort to break down barriers of fear and suspicion and [...]

2808, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 28, 2017

First things first. Let’s keep in our prayers the people who are facing Hurricane Harvey. Our colleagues at the Texas Catholic Conference have sent along a link from Catholic Charities USA in case you’re interested [...]

1707, 2017

ICC Newsletter – July 17, 2017

HEALTH CARE REFORM STILL AT ISSUE The U.S. Senate is still working on a health care reform bill called the “Better Care Reconciliation Act.” In response to a newly-released version, Bishop Frank J. Dewane of [...]

2706, 2017

ICC Newsletter – updated action alert on health care, June 27, 2017

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has sent out an updated action alert regarding the Senate health care bill. You can find the alert and take action at https://votervoice.net/USCCB/home. The USCCB is recommending [...]

2306, 2017

ICC Newsletter – June 23, 2017

The U.S. Senate is working on its version of a health care bill. The House passed its own bill last month. Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida, Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on [...]

2505, 2017

ICC Newsletter – May 25, 2017

The Catholic bishops of Iowa have released a statement reviewing the 2017 Iowa legislative session. Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds is now serving as governor following the resignation of Gov. Terry Branstad. In her inaugural address, [...]

2404, 2017

ICC Newsletter – April 24, 2017 – legislative session ends

The Iowa legislative session ended Saturday morning at 7:15 a.m. after pulling an all-nighter. Here are a few updates from the past week: The Senate passed Senate File 471 and sent it to the governor. [...]

1604, 2017

ICC Newsletter – April 17, 2017

Although the state legislature may be moving towards adjournment in the next week or two, there are still several issues where your input can make a difference. Thanks for your contacts last week with legislators [...]

1004, 2017

ICC Newsletter – April 10, 2017

First things first – we pray you have a blessed Holy Week! On to the news … Senate File 471, the bill to prohibit abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization, passed the House with an amendment [...]

304, 2017

ICC Newsletter – April 3, 2017

The second legislative “funnel” deadline was on Friday. Other than budget and tax bills, legislation was required to have passed one chamber and through a committee in the other chamber to remain eligible. Keep in [...]

2703, 2017

ICC Newsletter – March 27, 2017

Appropriations bills for state departments are being introduced at the legislature, which is usually a sign that the session is heading into its last month or so. A bill outlawing trafficking in fetal body parts, [...]

1903, 2017

ICC Newsletter, March 20, 2017

LAST WEEK AT THE STATE CAPITOL A bill to restrict abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization, Senate File 471, has passed the Senate by a vote of 32-17. The vote was mainly along party lines with [...]

1303, 2017

ICC Newsletter, March 13, 2017

Thanks for your quick response to our action alert supporting an increase in Iowa’s minimum wage. Unfortunately an effort to bring up an amendment to increase the minimum wage to $10.75 failed in the House [...]

503, 2017

ICC Newsletter – first legislative deadline – March 6, 2017

The first legislative “funnel” deadline was last Thursday. That means any bill that has not passed out of a committee by now is dead for the session, with the exception of budget and tax bills. [...]

2602, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 26, 2017

Our newsletter is extra lengthy this week because of the upcoming first legislative deadline. Bills are required to pass their first committee by Friday to remain eligible, with the exception of bills related to budget [...]

1902, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 19, 2017

Almost all other work stopped at the state capitol last week as debate focused on a bill to limit collective bargaining rights for public sector union members (HF 291). The bill passed both chambers on [...]

1202, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 12, 2017

ACTION ALERTS Please contact your legislator regarding House File 265, the successor bill to HSB 67. The bill is a piece of “enforcement-only” immigration legislation. It passed the House Public Safety Committee last week and [...]

602, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 6, 2017

The Iowa Catholic Conference is asking for your help with two new action alerts. Many of you have already sent in a message on one of these issues - if so, thank you! Oppose House [...]

2901, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 30, 2017

REACTION TO IMMIGRATION/REFUGEE ORDERS On Friday, President Trump issued an order related to refugees. According to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the order will virtually shut down the refugee admissions program for 120 days, [...]

2301, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 23, 2017

New resources posted on Education Savings Accounts We are working to encourage state legislators to pass an Education Savings Account program this year. Some new resources have been posted on our website, including a link [...]

1601, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 16, 2017

Bills introduced to “defund” abortion providers; eliminate regulation of guns The Iowa legislative session began last week with the introduction of some bills of interest to the Iowa Catholic Conference and the Governor’s “Condition of [...]

801, 2017

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 8, 2017

The 87th Iowa General Assembly convenes on Monday. Most of the first week is taken up by the usual ceremonies and organizational meetings of committees. During the first day, legislative leaders address the chambers to [...]

2012, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 20, 2016

LEGISLATIVE KICKOFF WEBINARS One of our top priorities during the upcoming legislative session is to encourage passage of a flexible Education Savings Account (ESA) program in Iowa. In preparation for the session, our partners at [...]

2811, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 28, 2016

We hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving. Time to get back to work! One of our top priorities during the upcoming legislative session is to encourage passage of an Education Savings Account (ESA) program in [...]

1011, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 10, 2016

Most of the election coverage has been focused on the presidential race but we pay attention to the Iowa Statehouse. Tuesday’s elections resulted in the Republicans gaining control of the Iowa Senate. They picked up [...]

211, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 2, 2016

"Making decisions in the light of our faith will not be easy, and it may lead us to a place we don't want to go. But it is our life-long obligation to say "yes" to [...]

1410, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Oct. 14, 2016

What should we be looking for in leaders? “Those with political responsibilities must not forget or underestimate the moral dimension of political representation, which consists in the commitment to share fully in the destiny of [...]

1909, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Sept. 19, 2016

“As faithful Catholics, we must consider every issue and candidate through the lens of God’s Word.” Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics, 2016 While most political attention is being paid these days to the presidential campaign, [...]

3108, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 31, 2016

As a part of the Iowa bishops’ Faithful Citizenship effort, we ask you to pray for those who are in public service or running for office, that they may use their position to protect the [...]

1508, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 15, 2016 – Bishops release “faithful citizenship” statement

The Iowa bishops have released their “Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics” statement for the 2016 general election. The Catholic Church does not endorse or oppose candidates or political parties. However, it contributes to the political [...]

1807, 2016

ICC Newsletter – July 18, 2016

Lately every week seems to bring news of a violent tragedy that has taken place in our country. These events have brought new attention to related public policy issues as well. The president of the [...]

2306, 2016

ICC Newsletter – June 23, 2016

The U.S. bishops’ “Fortnight for Freedom” is underway. For more information check out the blog post on our website. Here’s one reason why new legislation protecting religious freedom is necessary. Earlier this week, the U.S. [...]

606, 2016

ICC Newsletter – June 6, 2016

PRIMARY ELECTIONS ARE TOMORROW The political parties’ primary elections are being held tomorrow, Tuesday, June 7. Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. Voter registration, or a change in party affiliation, are allowed [...]

3105, 2016

ICC Newsletter – May 31, 2016

Work on the 2016 legislative session is all wrapped up now that the governor has signed the appropriations bills. Click here for a complete review of the session on our website. There was the usual [...]

2705, 2016

Report on 2016 legislative session

Now that the 2016 legislative session is completed, and the governor has signed the appropriations bills, it’s time for our annual review of the session from the perspective of the Iowa Catholic Conference and its [...]

205, 2016

ICC Newsletter – legislature adjourns – May 2, 2016

The Iowa General Assembly concluded its 2016 session on Friday. The last part of the session is almost always focused on budget items. Here are a few notes from the last couple of days of [...]

2504, 2016

ICC Newsletter – April 25, 2016

Welcome to our weekly report as the legislature considers the last few bills of the session. There’s still time to contact your legislator by going to our Action Center at www.votervoice.net/icc/home. On Friday the Iowa [...]

1804, 2016

ICC Newsletter – April 18, 2016

Budget bills are moving at the State Capitol and legislators are aiming to finish the session by the end of the week. House File 2460 is the appropriations bill for health and human services. It [...]

1104, 2016

ICC Newsletter – April 11, 2016

First, I’d like to say a word of welcome to our many new subscribers. We really appreciate your taking action on issues that are important to you! A bill to set up a pilot program [...]

404, 2016

ICC Newsletter – April 4, 2016

COMING UP THIS WEEK A subcommittee meeting is scheduled for early this afternoon (Monday) for House File 2284, a bill that would create a pilot Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) program. The establishment of ESAs is [...]

1803, 2016

ICC Newsletter – March 18, 2016

Two bills supported by the Iowa Catholic Conference were passed by the legislature and sent to the governor this week: House File 2386 passed the Senate 49-0. The bill enables the termination of parental rights [...]

1103, 2016

ICC Newsletter – March 11, 2016

As attention turns to budget matters at the legislature, we are asking for your help on a bill that would support refugees who have resettled in Iowa. SF 2298 would expand the current “RefugeeRISE” program [...]

603, 2016

ICC Newsletter – March 6, 2016

The Iowa Catholic Conference (ICC) supports HF 2329, a bill to prohibit the trafficking and use of fetal tissue following an abortion. It was set to be debated last week on the floor of the [...]

2902, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 29, 2016

If you sent a message to your legislator last week through our Action Center last week, thank you! If you haven’t yet done so, we would appreciate your taking action on these two bills: House [...]

2202, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 22, 2016 – First legislative deadline report

Last Friday was the first legislative deadline when bills were required to pass out of a committee to remain eligible (with exceptions for budget and tax bills). In the wake of the deadline we’re asking [...]

1502, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 15, 2016

The Iowa Catholic Conference legislative breakfast takes place tomorrow at the State Capitol. The Iowa bishops, along with ICC board and committee members, will be meeting in an informal setting with legislators who stop by. [...]

702, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 8, 2016

It was a short week at the state capitol last week with the Iowa Caucuses on Monday and a snowstorm on Tuesday. The precinct caucuses saw record turnout on the Republican side and high attendance [...]

2901, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 29, 2016

Iowa Catholic Conference staff participated in a meeting held at the University of Notre Dame this week discussing strategies to increase access and improve the quality of Catholic schools. Diocesan superintendents and representatives of state [...]

2201, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 22, 2016

Not all of the political activity in Iowa these days relates to the caucuses. The state legislature is back in session as well. Senate File 84 was considered in a Senate subcommittee on Tuesday. The [...]

1501, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 15, 2016

The Iowa legislative session began on Monday with the usual ceremonies and opening statements by leaders. Rep. Linda Upmeyer (R-Clear Lake) was sworn in as Iowa’s first female Speaker of the House. She said that [...]

801, 2016

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 8, 2016 – legislative session preview

We hope to see you at the Midwest March for Life coming up on Saturday, Jan. 16. The event is sponsored by Iowa Right to Life. Check out the flier here. There will be a [...]

2212, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Dec. 22, 2015

We asked for your help last week on three issues related to the omnibus bill ultimately signed into law by President Obama. Unfortunately, the abortion non-discrimination (ANDA) provisions we were working for did not make [...]

1112, 2015

Contact Congress now

There’s much activity in Washington, D.C. as Congress works to pass an omnibus appropriations bill. The U.S. bishops’ conference is asking for your help on three issues: We still have the opportunity to stand up [...]

2011, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 20, 2015

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is asking for your help in urging Congress to protect the right of conscientious objection to abortion. Can you imagine if you had spent years training to help the [...]

311, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Nov. 3, 2015

‘VOTE TO END HUNGER’ Additional presenters and supporters have been announced for Sunday’s interfaith and bipartisan “Vote To End Hunger Rally” at Grand View University in Des Moines. Rep. Mark Smith, (D-Marshalltown), Democratic leader in [...]

2210, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Oct. 22, 2016

Additional speakers have been announced for the interfaith Vote to End Hunger Rally to be held Nov. 8 at Grand View University in Des Moines. Kathie Obradovich, political columnist for the Des Moines Register, will [...]

2909, 2015

ICC Newsletter – reflections on Pope Francis’ visit to the U.S.

I was fortunate to be on the south lawn of the White House for the arrival ceremony with President Obama and Pope Francis. You can check out a photo on our Facebook page. In taking [...]

409, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Sept. 4, 2015

This is the time of year when we’re reviewing possible legislation for the next session, doing presentations for various groups and meeting with key legislators regarding our priorities. For example, Iowa Catholic Conference staff will [...]

1408, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Aug. 14, 2015

SIGN UP TODAY FOR THE SCHOOL CHOICE SUMMIT Don’t forget to sign up for the Iowa School Choice Summit on Wednesday, Sept. 16. Sponsored by our partners at the Iowa Alliance for Choice in Education, [...]

3107, 2015

ICC Newsletter – July 31, 2015

FAILING TO RESPECT THE DIGNITY OF HUMAN LIFE The release of videos showing Planned Parenthood’s involvement with the provision of babies’ organs following an abortion has prompted much reaction. Cardinal Sean O’Malley, OFM Cap., archbishop [...]

907, 2015

Report on 2015 legislative session

Making it over the finish line The 2015 Iowa Legislative session saw hundreds of proposals introduced, but only a relative few made it from the chambers to Governor Branstad’s desk to receive his signature and [...]

2205, 2015

ICC Newsletter – May 22, 2015

The Iowa Senate and House have passed different versions of SF 510, the "standings" appropriations bill. The bill makes adjustments to appropriations that are required by state law. Regarding an issue of concern to the [...]

1805, 2015

ICC Newsletter – May 18, 2015

Different week – same story. There’s still no deal at the legislature regarding funding for public schools. Republicans have proposed a $100 million increase and the Democrats have proposed a $200 million increase. This disagreement [...]

805, 2015

ICC Newsletter – May 8, 2015

It was a fairly short but busy week at the capitol as work continued on the state budget along with a few policy items. There are multiple reports that Democratic and Republican leaders have agreed [...]

405, 2015

ICC Newsletter – May 4, 2015

LAST WEEK AT THE CAPITOL There’s been no visible progress on the standoff over funding for public schools in Iowa. The state spends nearly $3 billion on K-12 education from the general fund. Republicans have [...]

2604, 2015

ICC Newsletter – April 27, 2015

Budget bills are starting to move in the Iowa legislature. The House Appropriations Committee is scheduled to consider the Department of Education budget bill later today (Monday). It includes status quo funding of about $650,000 [...]

1904, 2015

ICC Newsletter – April 20, 2015

KEEPING AN EYE ON BUDGET BILLS It looks like the Democrats, who hold the majority in the Iowa Senate, will begin work on budget bills this week. Their proposal would allow for spending from the [...]

1004, 2015

ICC Newsletter – April 10, 2015

State legislators have not been able to come to an agreement on public school funding levels. This has drastically slowed work on the state budget. Typically, a target date for the end of the session [...]

604, 2015

ICC Newsletter – April 6, 2015

The second legislative deadline was Friday. Only bills that have passed a committee in both chambers remain eligible, except for budget- and tax-related legislation. Several bills of interest to the Iowa Catholic Conference died in [...]

3003, 2015

ICC Newsletter – March 30, 2015

Friday is the second “funnel” deadline for non-money related bills to be passed by one chamber and approved by a committee in the other chamber. There’s still time to contact your legislator on some key [...]

2203, 2015

ICC Newsletter – March 23, 2015

Please send a message to your Senator today in support of House File 573. The bill requires that prior to performing an abortion, a physician must certify that the woman has undergone an ultrasound imaging [...]

1603, 2015

ICC Newsletter – March 16, 2015

The Iowa House passed House File 573 last Thursday by a vote of 57-39. The bill requires that prior to performing an abortion, a physician must certify that the woman has undergone an ultrasound imaging [...]

703, 2015

ICC Newsletter – first legislative deadline report

Friday, March 6 was the first “funnel” deadline at the legislature. With exceptions, bills have been voted out of committee by that date to be considered during the rest of the session. An Education Savings [...]

103, 2015

ICC Newsletter – March 1, 2015

It’s shaping up to be an interesting week at the State Capitol. It’s “funnel” week, where non-money bills in the Iowa Legislature are required to pass a committee no later than Friday to remain eligible [...]

2202, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 22, 2015

We’re pleased to report that two of our legislative priorities moved forward last week. House Study Bill 138, regulating payday loans, was introduced last Monday and passed a subcommittee on Thursday. We support the bill. [...]

1502, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 15, 2015

SCHOOL START DATE You may have been hearing some discussion about a “start date” for Iowa’s public and nonpublic schools. Iowa law requires schools to start no earlier than the week that contains the first [...]

802, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 8, 2015

LAST WEEK AT THE CAPITOL The Iowa House Education Committee passed a bill last week to provide additional spending flexibility for nonpublic community-based preschools, such as Catholic schools, that participate in the state-funded preschool program. [...]

202, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Feb. 2, 2015

Catholic Schools Week and National School Choice Week were celebrated across the state last week. Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds spoke at a school choice event held at the State Historical Building and Gov. Branstad signed [...]

2301, 2015

ICC Newsletter – Jan. 23, 2015

This week is Catholic Schools Week and the Iowa bishops have released a statement in support of Education Savings Accounts. ESAs would allow parents who choose not to enroll their children in a public school [...]

1601, 2015

First week of the 2015 legislative session

The first day of the Iowa legislative session this week offered an opportunity for legislative leaders to talk about their expectations for the session. You can find the highlights on our Facebook page. Legislators began [...]

901, 2015

Legislative session preview, Jan. 9, 2015

The 86th General Assembly of the Iowa legislature begins this Monday, Jan. 12. Little legislative work gets done the first week other than the usual ceremonies and organizational meetings of committees. Also coming up next [...]

1812, 2014

Iowa Catholic Conference Newsletter, December 2014

Welcome to the new members of the Iowa Catholic Conference legislative network! As we head toward Christmas, our staff is making preparations for several events in January: the start of the legislative session on Jan. [...]

511, 2014

Iowa election recap

The status quo has prevailed at the state legislature in Iowa. The Democrats retained a 26-24 majority in the Iowa Senate, while the House Republicans picked up a few seats to increase their majority to [...]

3110, 2014

Be guided by your moral convictions

"You must be guided by your moral convictions, not your self-interest or your attachment to a political party or interest group." Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics, 2014 If you’re watching any TV these days, you [...]

1710, 2014

ICC Newsletter – Oct. 17, 2014

Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t make a difference in the political arena. Especially when your contacts with legislators are combined with those of your friends and neighbors, I have seen many instances [...]

1209, 2014

Take Action Today – ICC Newsletter, Sept. 12, 2014

ALERT – TAKE ACTION TODAY The U.S. Catholic bishops and Catholic Charities USA have sent an action alert in support of the Second Chance Act. Please send a message to your Senators and Representatives as [...]

808, 2014

Bishops ask for prayers for the Middle East

One of the main goals of the Iowa Catholic Conference is to help inform your conscience and encourage involvement in the political process, particularly on issues at the state legislature. To that end, next month [...]

307, 2014

Supreme Court rules on religious freedom; Action alert on funding for refugees and unaccompanied minors

This week began with a positive decision of the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court ruled that closely-held family corporations will not be required to provide insurance coverage for certain drugs. The Hobby Lobby stores had [...]

2606, 2014

June 2014 ICC newsletter

The Iowa bishops have released a statement on the humanitarian issue on the southern border of the United States. It reads, in part: “We appreciate government officials for responding as best they can to this [...]

2905, 2014

National call-in day on immigration reform; Governor signs adoption tax credit

To: Iowa Catholic Conference Legislative Network NATIONAL CALL-IN DAY FOR IMMIGRATION REFORM Tomorrow, May 29, is a national “call-in day” to Congress in support of immigration reform. To participate, dial this toll-free number, 1-855-589-5698, to [...]

1305, 2014

Review of the 2014 legislative session

This is our complete report on the 2014 Iowa legislative session from the perspective of the Iowa Catholic Conference. The following pages review our key legislative and advocacy work during the 2014 session. The amount [...]

1002, 2014

2014 Preview of the Legislative Session

ICC Newsletter To: Iowa Catholic Conference Legislative Network As we try to stay warm during the latest deep-freeze, here’s a couple of news items followed by our annual preview of the legislative session . . [...]