The following is a legislative update from State Senator Amanda Ragan, representing Iowa Senate District 27 which includes portions of Cerro Gordo, Mitchell and Worth counties, as well as Rock Grove and Rockford townships in Floyd County:
If we fix the state’s workforce crisis, we can put more money into the pockets of hardworking Iowans and rebuild Iowa’s reputation as a great place to live, work, and raise a family.
The workforce crisis is hurting our schools, health care system and Main Street businesses:
* In Iowa schools, there aren’t enough full-time teachers, substitute teachers or bus drivers. The result is that schools aren’t operating at 100% every day.
* Iowans have less access to quality, affordable health care than they did two years ago because of the workforce crisis.
* Until we solve the workforce crisis, businesses across the state will remain closed or they will be forced to operate with reduced hours and fewer employees.
We need to invest in working families by:
* Increasing support for apprenticeships, career training, and technical education.
* Boosting support for affordable, quality child care across the state.
* Expanding access to ensure free, universal preschool in every community; and making child care more affordable in all 99 counties.
* Fully funding our public schools so our students attend the best public schools in the country.
* Investing in more affordable housing and helping more Iowans become homeowners.
* Providing paid family leave for working Iowa families.
I will continue to stay focused on the issues that matter to hardworking Iowans.