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Capitol Digest, 4-27-2012


This news story was published on April 29, 2012.
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Rod Boshart, CR Gazette –

A roundup of legislative and Capitol items of interest for Friday, April 27, 2012:

FRIEND OF THE COURT: Gov. Terry Branstad has filed an amicus brief in the lead ammunition lawsuit brought by the Sierra Club Iowa Chapter against the Legislature’s Administrative Rules Review Committee and the state Department of Natural Resources. According to the governor’s office, Branstad filed the brief (https://governor.iowa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/AmicusBrief.pdf) in support of the legislative panel’s role in ensuring that regulations are reflective of legislative action and not overly burdensome. He believes the determination of whether hunters should be forced to stop using traditional lead shot is the role of the Legislature, not the unelected commission. The Iowa chapter of environmental group Sierra Club filed a legal challenge in a dispute over the use of lead shot for Iowa dove hunting. The lawsuit alleges the legislative panel overstepped the separation of powers in the state constitution when it delayed implementation of the ban on the use of lead shot in hunting mourning doves adopted last July by the Natural Resources Commission, an executive branch agency. The Iowa Legislature last year passed a bill, which was signed by Branstad that permitted hunting mourning doves. In establishing dove hunting rules, the commission banned lead shot — which angered some lawmakers who said the commission overstepped its authority. The legislative committee voted last August to delay the implementation of the NRC rule to give Legislature time to come back this session and amend the law to allow lead shot. A resolution to nullify the rule passed the House in February but has not yet come before the Senate. If it is not passed this session, the lead shot ban will again go into effect.

HISTORY DAY CONTEST: More than 650 Iowa students will compete in National History Day in Iowa contests on Monday and again on May 7 at the State Historical Museum in Des Moines. Organizers say Gov. Terry Branstad will attend Monday’s awards ceremony for the NHD Senior Division state contest, which includes students in grades 9-12. The NHD Junior Division state contest includes students in grades 6-8 who will compete May 7. Winners from both divisions advance to the 2012 Kenneth E. Behring National History Day Contest at the University of Maryland June 10-14. National History Day is an academic enrichment program that helps students learn about historical issues, ideas, people and events. Last year, 69 Iowa students competed in the National Finals against nearly 2,500 students from the United States, Guam, America Samoa, Department of Defense Schools in Europe, and Shanghai, China, for scholarships and prizes, and 32 Iowa students earned honors — including three who took top honors in their category and received Gold Medals.

JUDGE APPOINTED: Gov. Terry Branstad announced Friday that he had appointed Richard B. Clogg of Indianola to serve as a district judge in Iowa’s 5A Judicial District. Clogg was appointed as a district associate judge in 1999. He was in private practice for 25 years prior to his appointment. Clogg received his bachelor’s degree from Simpson College in 1971 and his law degree from Drake University in 1974.

HISTORY MYSTERIES: The State Historical Society of Iowa in Iowa City will present a symposium next week about the challenges women and their families have faced regarding citizenship and human rights. The “Iowa History Mysteries” symposium will feature University of Iowa Professor Linda Kerber and her students. During the current semester, the UI students conducted research as part of a “Human Rights and American Women” course using library and archival materials to investigate Iowa cases and events in which human rights were at stake. Tuesday’s event will begin at 11 a.m. at the State Historical Society of Iowa, 402 Iowa Avenue in Iowa City. It is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Contact Mary Bennett at 319-335-3911 for more information.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “He really wanted me to pull through.” – Gov. Terry Branstad on Friday recounting a 1980 traffic accident in which the attending volunteer in a Lake Mills ambulance that transported him from the scene for medical attention turned out to be his life insurance agent. Branstad made the comments on a day when he signed nine bills into law, including Senate File 2322 which will allow Iowa’s volunteer fire fighters and emergency medical services personnel to claim a $50 annual tax credit beginning in 2013 in recognition of the services they provide to the people of Iowa.

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