# Update

House Votes To Expand Access To Quality Preschool

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

For More Information:

Dean Fiihr, 515-281-0817

In four years, nearly every Iowa four year old will have access to quality, affordable preschool thanks to a plan adopted by the Iowa House on Wednesday night.  Currently, 28,000 four year olds in Iowa do not have access to pre-school.

“We know brain development in the early years is the most critical time in a child’s life,” said State Representative Mary Mascher of Iowa City, who managed the bill in the Iowa House.  “We know quality preschool is a good investment.  It improves the chances of success for our kids and reduces crime.  Every Iowa child should have the opportunity to participate in a preschool program with a qualified, capable, and competent teacher.”

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From the Speaker of The Iowa House: Legislative Update

( - promoted by Chris Woods)


Inside the Iowa Legislature, March 16, 2007

By Speaker of the House Pat Murphy


Two days after the House provided bipartisan support to stop kids from smoking and save lives, Governor Culver signed Senate File 128 in the rotunda at the Iowa Capitol. The bill increases the tax on a pack of cigarettes from 36¢ to $1.36 per pack, and from 22 to 50 percent of wholesale price for other tobacco products, up to an extra 50¢ per cigar.  The bill changes the tax on snuff from a percent of price to $1.19 per ounce. 

The legislation, managed in the House by Rep. Pam Jochum (D-Dubuque), was vigorously promoted by the American Cancer Society, American Lung Association, Iowa Medical Society and other health advocacy groups.  The benefits of the bill are widespread and had overwhelming support from Iowans. Most importantly, the bill will keep 42,000 kids from picking up the smoking habit in the first place, which is critical since 90% of smokers started before the age of 18.

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