Iowa Public Television

 

Sen. Joe Bolkcom & Sen. Larry McKibbon

posted on January 19, 2007

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Borg: WAYS AND MEANS. THAT'S LEGISLATIVE SPEAK FOR DEVISING TAXES TO RAISE STATE REVENUE, AND IOWA MAY HAVE SOME CHANGES IN THE WORKS. INSIGHT FROM THE IOWA SENATE'S WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE MEMBERS JOE BOLKCOM AND LARRY MCKIBBEN ON THIS EDITION OF 'IOWA PRESS.'

FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY 'FRIENDS,' THE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION FOUNDATION; BY THE IOWA BANKERS ASSOCIATION... FOR PERSONAL, BUSINESS, AND COMMERCIAL NEEDS, IOWA BANKS HELP IOWANS REACH THEIR FINANCIAL GOALS; AND BY THE ASSOCIATED GENERAL CONTRACTORS OF IOWA, THE PUBLIC'S PARTNER IN BUILDING IOWA'S HIGHWAY, BRIDGE, AND MUNICIPAL UTILITY INFRASTRUCTURE.

ON STATEWIDE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION, THIS IS THE FRIDAY, JANUARY 19 EDITION OF 'IOWA PRESS.' HERE IS DEAN BORG.

Borg: TAXES AND TAX REFORM WERE SIGNIFICANT ISSUES IN LAST YEAR'S CAMPAIGN FOR THE IOWA LEGISLATURE. THERE WERE CAMPAIGN SUGGESTIONS FOR RESTRUCTURING COMMERCIAL AND RESIDENTAL PROPERTY TAXES, THE STATE INCOME TAX, THE CIGARETTE TAX, FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY, AND THEN JUST AS THE LEGISLATURE WAS ABOUT TO CONVENE, A PLEA TO INCREASE FUEL TAXES. AS THE 2007 LEGISLATIVE SESSION NOW HEADS INTO ITS THIRD WEEK, THE WORK IS UNDERWAY. TODAY WE'RE GETTING A PROGRESS REPORT FROM THE TOP DEMOCRAT AND THE RANKING REPUBLICAN ON THE SENATE'S WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE. IOWA CITY SENATOR JOE BOLKCOM OF IOWA CITY CHAIRS THE COMMITTEE, AND THE RANKING REPUBLICAN IS MARSHALLTOWN SENATOR LARRY MCKIBBEN. GENTLEMEN, WELCOME BACK TO 'IOWA PRESS.'

McKibben: GLAD TO BE HERE.

Borg: IT'S AN UNCOMFORTABLE SUBJECT FOR SOME PEOPLE, TAXES, BUT IT'S NECESSARY, AND WE WANT A PREVIEW TODAY. AND WE'LL GET THAT AS THE QUESTIONING COMES FROM 'DES MOINES REGISTER' POLITICAL COLUMNIST DAVID YEPSEN AND 'ASSOCIATED PRESS' SENIOR POLITICAL WRITER MIKE GLOVER.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, LET'S START WITH YOU, IF WE COULD. THE GOVERNOR, GOVERNOR CULVER, IS GOING TO ASK YOU FOR A DOLLAR A PACK INCREASE IN THE STATE'S CIGARETTE TAX. WILL THIS LEGISLATURE INCREASE THE CIGARETTE TAX AND, IF SO, BY HOW MUCH?

Bolkcom: WELL, MIKE, THERE'S BEEN A LOT OF CONVERSATION ABOUT THE CIGARETTE TAX. IT'S BEEN WIDELY VENTED AROUND OUR STATE. WE'VE LISTENED TO OUR CONSTITUENTS. AS YOU KNOW, GOVERNOR CULVER CAMPAIGNED ON IT AND GOT ELECTED TALKING ABOUT IT. I THINK HE'D LIKE TO INVEST THAT MONEY IN OUR HEALTH CARE SYSTEM. THERE ARE PROPOSALS -- HIS PROPOSAL IS A DOLLAR. THERE ARE A COUPLE PROPOSALS FURTHER -- THAT GO OUT FURTHER THAN THAT AND SOME LESS. AND I THINK AT THE END OF THE DAY WE WILL IN FACT RAISE THE TOBACCO TAX. IT SAVES LIVES. IT'S SOMETHING WE CAN DO IN REGARD TO OUR HEALTH CARE SYSTEM. WE NEED SOME MORE INVESTMENT IN THAT.

Glover: LESS THAN THE DOLLAR HE'S ASKING FOR?

Bolkcom: THERE ARE MEMBERS OF LEGISLATURE THAT WOULD LIKE TO SEE LESS THAN A DOLLAR, BUT I EXPECT THAT THE GOVERNOR WHO CAMPAIGNED ON A DOLLAR WILL INCLUDE A DOLLAR IN HIS BUDGET.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, SAME QUESTION TO YOU. IT'S YOUR SENSE THAT THE LEGISLATURE IS GOING TO INCREASE THE CIGARETTE TAX AND, IF SO, HOW MUCH?

McKibben: WELL, OF COURSE, AS YOU KNOW, MIKE, THE SENATE DID THAT A YEAR AGO WITH A CORRESPONDING REDUCTION IN TAXES ON THE OTHER SIDE. I CERTAINLY EXPECT A VIGOROUS DEBATE ON THAT. I LOOK FORWARD TO THE GOVERNOR'S PROPOSALS WHEN HE PRESENTS JANUARY 30 ON HIS BUDGET. I THINK REPUBLICANS SHARE SOME CONCERNS OF IOWANS THAT ARE ON THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER AND THE MISSOURI RIVER, SMALL BUSINESSES IN TERMS OF THE IMPACT. AND I THINK THERE'S REALLY TWO ISSUES THAT WE'RE GOING TO LOOK AT. ONE, THE SIZE OF THE PROPOSED INCREASE; HOW DOES IT MAKE US FROM A COMPETITIVE STANDPOINT WITH OUR RIVER BUSINESSES? AND SECONDLY, WHAT HAPPENS -- WHAT'S THE USE OF THE MONEY? REPUBLICANS WILL FIGHT VERY STRONGLY TO NOT HAVE IT ADDED TO THE BASELINE BUDGET AND SIMPLY GROW GOVERNMENT. THAT WOULD BE A LINE IN THE SAND. HOW THE USE OF THE MONEY AND WHAT THE GOVERNOR PROPOSES, I'M VERY INTERESTED TO SEE.

Glover: BUT THERE WILL BE AN INCREASE?

McKibben: I'D BE REAL SURPRISED IF THERE WASN'T AN INCREASE, BECAUSE CERTAINLY WITH THE NEW TEAM IN PLACE, IF THEY WANT THE INCREASE, THEY'LL GET THE INCREASE.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, WHAT'S THE GOAL HERE? IS THE GOAL TO RAISE MONEY, OR IS THE GOAL TO STOP PEOPLE FROM SMOKING?

Bolkcom: WELL, MIKE, WHO DOESN'T KNOW SOMEBODY THAT'S DIED FROM SMOKING CIGARETTES? IT AFFECTS EVERY FAMILY VIRTUALLY IN OUR STATE. IT WILL SAVE LIVES TO RAISE THE TOBACCO TAX. IT'S PRETTY CERTAIN TO DO THAT. WE SPEND ABOUT $300 MILLION NOW OF TAXPAYER MONEY TO SUPPORT THE COST OF TOBACCO ILLNESS. WE ONLY COLLECT ABOUT $80 MILLION IN TOBACCO TAXES. I THINK WE CAN BEGIN TO ADDRESS SAVING LIVES AND FILLING UP SOME OF THAT COST THAT WE CURRENTLY HAVE IN OUR STATE BUDGET.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN?

McKibben: ONE THING THAT WAS REALLY INTERESTING NOW I LISTEN TO REPRESENTATIVE MURPHY, SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE TALKED ABOUT THE IMPACT OF THE SIZE OF THE TAX INCREASE. THE QUESTION IS ARE WE OUT THERE TO SAVE LIVES OR ARE WE OUT THERE TO RAISE REVENUE OR ARE WE OUT THERE TO BE COMPETITIVE. AND I THINK RIGHT NOW THE MAJORITY MATTER PARTY IS GOING TO HAVE TO SORT OUT WHAT THEIR MESSAGE IS. ARE WE RAISING IT A DOLLAR BECAUSE WE'RE GOING TO SAVE LIVES? ARE WE RAISING -- ARE WE HOLDING DOWN THE INCREASE, WHICH MEANS THAT WE'RE GOING TO SAVE LESS LIVES BECAUSE WE'RE INTERESTED IN MAINTAINING THE BUSINESS COMPETITIVENESS ON THE RIVERS? SO I THINK WE'RE WAITING TO SEE WHAT IS THE CONSISTENT MESSAGE OUT OF THE MAJORITY, AND I DON'T THINK WE'RE HEARING IT BETWEEN THE HOUSE AND SENATE YET.

Yepsen: SENATOR BOLKCOM, WHAT ABOUT THAT QUESTION OF THE BORDER AREAS? IT'S EASY FOR THOSE OF US WHO LIVE IN CENTRAL IOWA TO FORGET ABOUT THE FACT THAT A THIRD OF IOWANS LIVE IN THE TIER OF COUNTIES AROUND OUR BORDERS; 34 PERCENT LIVE WITHIN 30 MILES OF THE STATE LINE. ARE YOU WORRIED ABOUT BOOTLEGGING HERE, THAT IF IN FACT YOU DO WHAT THE GOVERNOR HAS SUGGESTED, RAISE IT A DOLLAR, GO FROM ONE OF THE LOWEST TAXES IN THE REGION TO ONE OF THE HIGHEST, THAT YOU'RE GOING TO CREATE A BOOTLEGGING PROBLEM THAT'S GOING TO HURT BUSINESS IN THOSE BORDER AREAS?

Bolkcom: TOBACCO IS THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IN THE STATE OF IOWA. ABOUT 5,000 IOWANS DIE A YEAR FROM IT.

Yepsen: SO YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT THE BOOTLEGGING?

Bolkcom: AND RAISING THE TOBACCO TAX IS GOING TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF YOUNG PEOPLE THAT START SMOKING. WE CURRENTLY HAVE IN EQUITY NOW, ILLINOIS, FOR EXAMPLE, HAS A TOBACCO TAX OF 98 CENTS. OURS IS 36 CENTS. WE HAVE PEOPLE FROM ILLINOIS CURRENTLY COMING INTO IOWA. IF WE COULD GET THE ILLINOIS GENERAL ASSEMBLY TO SUPPORT THE CURRENT MORE THAN $200 MILLION THAT IOWA TAXPAYERS PAY FOR TOBACCO ILLNESS TODAY, I'D SAY WE COULD KEEP IT WHERE IT IS. BUT I THINK IT DOES HAVE TO GO UP. WE'RE ALWAYS GOING TO HAVE THE BORDER ISSUES, AND WHAT THAT LEVEL IS REMAINS TO BE SCENE. WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A VIGOROUS DEBATE ON THAT.

Yepsen: ISN'T THERE A DANGER, SENATOR, THAT YOU DEFEAT THE PURPOSE OF WHAT YOU'RE TRYING TO DO HERE JUST TO REDUCE SMOKING? IF YOU RAISE IT SO HIGH, YOU CREATE A BOOTLEGGING PROBLEM AND PEOPLE, PARTICULARLY TEENAGERS, ARE BUYING ILLEGAL CIGARETTES?

Bolkcom: I THINK THE DEBATE WILL BE WHAT THAT LEVEL IS, WHETHER IT'S A DOLLAR SOMETHING, LESS THAN A DOLLAR, TO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION THE CONCERNS OF BORDER COUNTY LEGISLATORS AND THE IMPACT THAT YOU RAISE ON THE BOOTLEGGING BETWEEN STATES.

Yepsen: HASN'T SPEAKER MURPHY HIT IT ABOUT ON THE HEAD; IT'S GOING TO BE ABOUT 40 TO 60 CENTS A PACK AT THE END OF THE DAY?

Bolkcom: WELL, I THINK THE LEADERS HAVE BEEN IN THAT RANGE. AGAIN, I WAIT TO SEE WHAT THE GOVERNOR'S ASSESSMENT OF THIS ISSUE IS AND LET THE DEBATE BEGIN.

Borg: SENATOR BOLKCOM, I'M WONDERING -- THIS IS NOT A TAX QUESTION, BUT I'M WONDERING MIGHT THERE BE A COMPANION BILL HERE THAT WOULD ALLOW COMMUNITIES ON A LOCAL OPTION BASIS TO BAN SMOKING IN SOME AREAS?

Bolkcom: WELL, I HOPE, DEAN, THAT WE RETURN TO THAT DISCUSSION. YOU KNOW, SECONDHAND SMOKE IS ALSO A CARCINOGEN, AND IT TAKES PEOPLE'S LIVES. AND I DON'T THINK WE HAVE THE VOTES TO PASS A STATEWIDE BAN. I WISH WE DID. BUT WE OUGHT TO LET COMMUNITIES THAT HAVE THAT INTEREST IN MIND TO DO SO, AND I HOPE WE CAN REVERSE A CURRENT LAW TO ALLOW THAT TO HAPPEN.

Borg: HOW WOULD YOU FEEL ABOUT THAT, SENATOR MCKIBBEN?

McKibben: WELL, I'M CERTAINLY A FREE-MARKET PERSON. I THINK A PERSON HAS THE RIGHT TO RUN THEIR BUSINESS, THEIR SMALL BUSINESS, WHETHER IT'S AN EATING ESTABLISHMENT OR WHATEVER RETAIL IT IS, IN THE MANNER THAT THEY WANT TO. AND THEN I'LL CHOOSE WHERE I GO. I HAVE RESTAURANTS IN MY COMMUNITY THAT ARE SMOKE-FREE RESTAURANTS. I HAVE A PIZZA RESTAURANT THAT I REGULARLY GO TO THAT SOME YEARS AGO SWITCHED. EVERYBODY SAID, WELL, HE'S GOING TO HURT HIS BUSINESS IF HE GOES SMOKE-FREE. HE MADE THAT DECISION. MY FAMILY ENJOYS GOING TO THAT RESTAURANT FOR EXACTLY THAT REASON. THE FREE MARKET PART OF ME SAYS WHERE IS IT THAT GOVERNMENT GETS OFF DECIDING WHAT'S GOOD IN OUR LIVES. WE HAVE THE DISCUSSION WITH MOTORCYCLE HELMETS. WE HAVE THE DISCUSSION WITH SEAT BELTS AND HOW MANY SEAT BELTS DO WE PUT IN AND DO WE ALLOW PEOPLE TO RIDE IN THE BACK OF A PICKUP TRUCK. WHERE IS IT -- YOU KNOW, IOWANS TEND TO BE A PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN PRETTY INDEPENDENT IN OUR HISTORY AND OUR CULTURE. AND IF A COMMUNITY -- IF A COMMUNITY CHOOSES TO DO THAT BUT -- I HESITATE VERY STRONGLY TO HAVE GOVERNMENT PUT MANDATES ON HOW WE OPERATE ON OUR --

Yepsen: SENATOR, WHAT ABOUT JUST LETTING LOCAL COMMUNITIES MAKE THAT DECISION FOR THEMSELVES? I UNDERSTAND -- IF I UNDERSTAND SENATOR BOLKCOM CORRECTLY, THERE ARE NOT THE VOTES IN THE LEGISLATURE TO JUST SAY BAN SMOKING IN THE WORKPLACE OR IN RESTAURANTS. BUT WHAT ABOUT LETTING COMMUNITIES DECIDE THAT FOR THEMSELVES?

McKibben: IF THEY PUT IT TO THE VOTE OF THE PEOPLE AND THE MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE SAID THAT AS OPPOSED TO SEVEN PEOPLE ON THE CITY COUNCIL, FOUR OF WHOM SAY THAT THAT OUGHT TO BE THE RULE AND THREE OF WHOM OPPOSE IT --

Yepsen: WHAT ABOUT THAT, SENATOR BOLKCOM? DO YOU THINK THE VOTES ARE IN THE LEGISLATURE FOR SOMETHING LIKE THAT?

Bolkcom: I WISH -- I HOPE THAT THERE ARE. IT'S TIME THAT WE HAVE A MORE PROGRESSIVE STAND ON THIS ISSUE. PEOPLE ARE DYING FROM SECONDHAND SMOKE. PEOPLE WORK IN RESTAURANTS AND ARE EXPOSED. WE DO REGULATE CARCINOGENS AND TOXICS IN WORKPLACES. TOBACCO IS ONE OF THOSE. IT OUGHT TO BE REGULATED.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, SINCE THE ELECTION THIS WHOLE CIGARETTE TAX DEBATE WAS PART OF THE DEBATE, AS YOU MENTIONED, BEFORE THE ELECTION. BUT SINCE THE ELECTION, THE ROAD LOBBY HAS POPPED UP WITH SOME STUDIES AND AN IDEA OF INCREASING THE GAS TAX. IS THAT SOMETHING YOU'LL GIVE SERIOUS CONSIDERATION TO, AND WHY WASN'T IT A PART OF THE CAMPAIGN?

Bolkcom: WELL, I THINK WE NEED A ROAD SYSTEM THAT'S MODERN AND TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS THAT'S MODERN IN THIS STATE. AS YOU KNOW, THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION JUST CAME OUT WITH A STUDY ABOUT OUR ROADS AND INDICATE THAT WE'RE NOT KEEPING UP. IT WASN'T PART OF THE CAMPAIGN ACROSS THE STATE, AND I THINK WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT THERE'S A CONVERSATION DEVELOPED ABOUT THIS AND THE CASE BE MADE AND THAT IF THERE'S BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR SUCH A MOVE, THEN MAYBE WE OUGHT TO TAKE A LOOK AT IT. BUT IT NEEDS SOME MORE TIME FOR THE LEGISLATURE TO CONSIDER WHAT THINGS ARE?

Glover: IS IT SOMETHING FOR THIS LEGISLATURE OR FOR THE NEXT LEGISLATURE?

Bolkcom: I THINK WE SHOULD -- I THINK WE SHOULD MOVE AHEAD WITH A CONVERSATION ABOUT THIS AND EDUCATE OURSELVES ABOUT THE NEEDS THIS SESSION AND SEE WHERE IT GOES. BUT I WOULD SAY WE DID NOT CAMPAIGN ON THIS, AND THERE'S -- PEOPLE ARE NOT CHOMPING AT THE BIT TO RAISE THE GAS TAX.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, THE SAME QUESTION TO YOU. THERE'S BEEN A SUGGESTION THE GAS TAX NEEDS TO BE RAISED. IT WASN'T A PART OF THE CAMPAIGN. WHAT'S YOUR VIEW OF THAT?

McKibben: WELL, I'M A FIRM BELIEVER THAT YOU NEED TO TEST IT ACROSS THE ELECTORATE, AND YOU NEED PEOPLE TO BE FULLY ADVISED OF WHAT IT IS THAT YOU'RE PROPOSING. AND IT CERTAINLY WASN'T THERE. I DON'T HAVE ANY OF MY CONSTITUENTS COMING IN TO SEE ME AND SAYING, YOU KNOW, I'M NOT PAYING ENOUGH AT THE GAS PUMP, WHY DON'T YOU HIT ME ANOTHER 10 OR 20 CENTS. THAT AFFECTS FAMILIES, PEOPLE THAT COMMUTE TO WORK WHERE BOTH HUSBAND AND WIFE DRIVE, PEOPLE THAT TAKE THEIR CHILDREN TO DAY CARE. IT HAS A MAJOR RAMIFICATION ACROSS -- I'M JUST DELIGHTED FINALLY THAT WE CAN PAY UNDER $2 A GALLON FOR GAS BECAUSE I THINK THAT'S GOING TO HELP WORKING FAMILIES. AND FOR ME TO TURN AROUND AND JUST SAY ARBITRARILY I'M GOING TO INCREASE -- I KNOW WE HAVE NEEDS. AND PERHAPS WE NEED TO LOOK AT THE ENTIRE ROAD USE TAX FUND FORMULA, HOW WE DO IT. WE KNOW THAT WE'RE HAVING DECREASING REVENUES FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. WE KNOW THAT WE'RE HAVING DECREASING REVENUES FROM THE STATE. WE KNOW THAT THERE ARE TREMENDOUS NEEDS FROM GROWING OUR ECONOMY. YOU LOOK AT HIGHWAY 20, THE COMPLETION OF THAT. HIGHWAY 30 NOW IS THE SECOND MOST TRAVELED EAST-WEST ROAD IN THE STATE OF IOWA BEYOND INTERSTATE 80. WE KNOW THAT DEVELOPMENT, ECONOMIC GROWTH OCCURS WHEN TRANSPORTATION TO THE HUBS AND THE SPOKES OF THE WHEEL GET OUT THERE. SO WE NEED TO LOOK AT IT. MAYBE THERE'S ANOTHER WAY TO DO IT. MAYBE THERE'S ANOTHER SOURCE. MAYBE IT'S A REORGANIZING OF OUR PRIORITIES OF HOW WE FUND THAT, AND MAYBE WE SAY THAT ROAD BUILDING IS AN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PRIORITY AND WE HAVE TO REARRANGE THE PIECES. BUT JUST TO GO OUT AND SAY WE'RE GOING TO RAISE THE TAXES, THIS IS THE EASY -- I THINK THAT'S THE EASY ANSWER TO A HARD QUESTION.

Yepsen: SENATOR BOLKCOM, YOU'RE A DEMOCRAT. YOU'RE A FAIRLY LIBERAL DEMOCRAT TOO. HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE TALKING RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX OF THIS SESSION, NEW DEMOCRATIC MAJORITY IN THE LEGISLATURE, AND YOU'RE TALKING -- THE PUBLIC DEBATE IN THIS STATE IS ABOUT RAISING THE CIGARETTE TAX AND RAISING THE GAS TAX, WHICH ARE TWO TAXES THAT REALLY NAIL WORKING FAMILIES? ARE YOU COMFORTABLE WITH THAT AS A DEMOCRAT?

Bolkcom: I THINK THERE ARE CONCERNS ABOUT THE REGRESSIVE NATURE OF THOSE TAXES. BUT LET'S BE CLEAR. I MEAN THE TOBACCO TAX IS SOMETHING THAT HAS BROAD SUPPORT ACROSS THIS STATE, AND WE'RE BASICALLY LISTENING TO OUR CONSTITUENTS WHEN THEY COME TO US AND TALK ABOUT THAT ISSUE. AS I SAID A MOMENT AGO, THE GAS TAX ISSUE I DON'T THINK HAS BEEN DEVELOPED AT THIS POINT. IN MY MIND THE CASE HASN'T BEEN MADE FOR ANY KIND OF TAX INCREASE.

Yepsen: SENATOR, HOW SMART IS IT FOR THE STATE TO WAIT, GIVEN WHAT'S HAPPENING TO CONSTRUCTION COSTS? I MEAN WE HAVE SEEN CONSTRUCTION COSTS BECAUSE OF CHINA AND INDIA, CONCRETE AND STEEL COSTS HAVE JUST SKYROCKETED. TALK TO ANYBODY THAT'S REMODELING A HOUSE ABOUT WHAT'S HAPPENED. SO YOU'RE SAYING TO ME THE LEGISLATURE IS GOING TO WAIT ONE OR TWO YEARS AND LET THOSE COSTS CONTINUE TO RISE BEFORE WE GET AROUND TO DOING SOMETHING ABOUT OUR ROAD PROBLEMS?

Bolkcom: I THINK IOWANS EXPECT US TO DO OUR HOMEWORK AND MAKE SURE THAT WHEN WE GO TO THEM FOR RESOURCES FOR THINGS LIKE ROADS OR OTHER SERVICES THAT THEY DEPEND ON THAT WE'VE DONE OUR DUE DILIGENCE AND MAKE SURE THAT WE REALLY NEED THAT MONEY. AND THAT PROCESS HASN'T TAKEN PLACE YET.

Glover: SENATOR, I'VE GOT ONE LAST QUESTION ON THE GAS TAX. YOU'RE NOT EAGER TO RAISE THE AMOUNT OF MONEY COMING INTO THE GAS TAX, BUT ARE YOU WILLING TO LOOK AT THE HOW THE MONEY IS SPENT? AS YOU KNOW, THERE'S A FORMULA THAT ALLOCATES THAT MONEY BETWEEN RURAL AND URBAN AREAS. ARE WE SPENDING OUR MONEY IN THE RIGHT PLACES?

McKibben: WELL, AGAIN, I DON'T THINK WE OUGHT TO LOOK AT THIS AS A RURAL -- YOU KNOW, YOU USE RURAL/URBAN, MIKE, AND I DON'T THINK THOSE ARE REAL RAISE-A-RED-FLAG WORDS. RURAL AREAS BENEFIT WHEN THERE'S A FOUR-LANE HIGHWAY THAT CONNECTS THEM INTO CEDAR RAPIDS OR CONNECTS THEM INTO DES MOINES OR CONNECTS THEM INTO THE OTHER AREAS. WE SEE SPINOFF IN MARSHALLTOWN BY VIRTUE OF THE FACT THAT WE NOW HAVE THE FOUR-LANE 330 GOING UP THERE. WE SEE LENNOX AND FISHER EXPANDING THEIR OPERATIONS, AND WE ARE BASICALLY A RURAL AREA OUTSIDE OF A METROPOLITAN HUB. THAT'S WHAT WE'RE LOOKING AT. DO WE HAVE TO LOOK AT THE FORMULAS, AND DO WE HAVE TO LOOK AT THE ALLOCATIONS? IT'S LIKE THE FAMILY BUDGET. WE HAVE TO PRIORITIZE OUR NEEDS, AND THEN WE HAVE TO PUT DOLLARS IN THE MOST IMPORTANT PLACE THAT WE FEEL WILL HELP GROW THE ECONOMY. AND I THINK IT'S GOT TO BE A WIN-WIN SITUATION FOR BOTH RURAL AND URBAN.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT GOVERNOR CULVER HAS DONE IS FORMED A SPECIAL TASK FORCE TO LOOK AT COMPLAINTS THAT COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAXES ARE OUT OF LINE FOR OTHER STATES. THAT TASK FORCE IS HAVING A TERRIBLY DIFFICULT TIME COMING UP WITH ANY SUGGESTIONS. THE FIRST THING THEY CAME UP WITH WAS JUST A BAND-AID. ARE YOU GOING TO BE ABLE TO DEAL WITH THAT THIS SESSION?

Bolkcom: WELL, IT'S ONE OF THOSE ISSUES THAT'S QUITE COMPLICATED. IT'S A SET OF CIRCUMSTANCES THAT'S DEVELOPED OVER THE LAST THIRTY YEARS IN TERMS OF HOW THE SYSTEM DEVELOPED. WE HEARD FROM MAIN STREET BUSINESSES ACROSS THE STATE DURING THE COURSE OF THIS CAMPAIGN ABOUT THE NEED FOR SOME SORT OF REFORM OF THE COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX SYSTEM. GOVERNOR CULVER'S TASK FORCE WILL REPORT NEXT WEEK. WE HAVE INVITED THEM TO OUR WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE NEXT WEEK TO HEAR THEIR RECOMMENDATIONS, AND I THINK THAT WILL BE THE STARTING POINT OF REALLY SEEKING IDEAS FROM ALL ACROSS THE SPECTRUM OF BUSINESSES AND CITIZENS ABOUT HOW TO SOLVE THIS PROBLEM.

Glover: DO YOU AGREE WITH THE PREMISE THAT COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX RATES ARE OUT OF LINE?

Bolkcom: I THINK THAT COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX RATES ARE OUT OF LINE IN THIS STATE, AND WE NEED A REFORM THAT REBALANCES WHERE WE'RE AT.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, AS I MENTIONED, THIS TASK FORCE IS HAVING A TERRIBLY DIFFICULT TIME WRESTLING WITH A VERY COMPLICATED ISSUE. CAN THIS LEGISLATURE DEAL WITH IT?

McKibben: I STARTED IN THE SENATE TEN YEARS AGO. ONE OF THE VERY FIRST PROJECTS ON THE WAYS AND MEANS I STARTED TO WORK ON WAS PROPERTY TAX REFORM TEN YEARS AGO. TEN YEARS AGO WHEN I STARTED TO WORK ON THE PROJECT, COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAXES AMOUNTED TO 19 PERCENT OF THE PROPERTY TAX BUDGET. TODAY IT'S 29 PERCENT. IT'S GONE UP 50 PERCENT IN TEN YEARS. IT IS THE ISSUE THAT I HAVE HEARD MORE FROM MY MAIN STREET AND SMALL BUSINESS EMPLOYERS THAN ANY OTHER ISSUE RIGHT NOW. THIS IS THE YEAR TO DO IT. I'M ON BOARD WITH THE GOVERNOR. BUT YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO SPEND SOME POLITICAL CAPITAL TO GET IT DONE, AND YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO SPEND SOME MONEY OUT OF YOUR BUDGET TO FUND THOSE NEEDS, AND PROBABLY IT WILL COME IN THE SCHOOL FUND ISSUE FORMAT.

Borg: WHY POLITICAL CAPITAL?

McKibben: IN ORDER TO REDUCE OR MAKE CERTAIN THAT THERE ARE NO INCREASES, WHAT WE CAN'T DO IS REDUCE COMMERCIAL AND INCREASE RESIDENTAL, WHICH IS ALREADY AMONG THE TOP TEN HIGHEST IN THE NATION, OR INCREASE AG LAND. WE'RE NOT GOING TO GET IT DONE POLITICALLY. SO WE HAVE TO TAKE SOME OF THE REVENUES THAT WE'RE GETTING. AND WE'RE IN A GOOD -- WE'RE IN A GOOD REVENUE TIME RIGHT NOW RELATIVELY. AND WE HAVE TO SAY THIS IS A PRIORITY WITH US BECAUSE SMALL BUSINESSES CAN'T CREATE JOBS. AND WE IF WE DON'T CREATE JOBS, WE'RE NOT GOING TO KEEP YOUNG PEOPLE IN THE STATE OF IOWA. THIS IS GOING TO BE A PRIORITY. YOU HAVE TO SPEND THE POLITICAL CAPITAL, AND YOU MAY HAVE TO TELL SOME OTHER PEOPLE, SORRY, YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER BUDGET YEAR FOR THAT 4-, 5-, OR 6-PERCENT INCREASE THAT YOU'VE BEEN WAITING FOR IN YOUR BUDGET. THIS IS WHAT YOU DO IN YOUR FAMILY BUDGET, DEAN.

Yepsen: SENATOR BOLKCOM, THE COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX, ALL PROPERTY TAXES GO BASICALLY TO FUND THE WHOLE GOVERNMENT. AS A FORMER LOCAL GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL, IS IT NOT TIME FOR THE LEGISLATURE TO GIVE LOCAL GOVERNMENTS SOME ADDITIONAL TOOLS SO THAT THEY CAN HAVE OTHER SOURCES OF REVENUE? LOCAL OPTION INCOME, LOCAL OPTION SALES, MORE FEES SO THAT THEY CAN TURN SOME OTHER SOURCE OF REVENUE TO FUND CITIES AND COUNTIES AND SCHOOLS.

Bolkcom: WELL, AS YOU KNOW, PEOPLE DON'T LIKE WHERE WE ARE WITH PROPERTY TAXES. PEOPLE ALSO WANT GOOD QUALITY PUBLIC SERVICES THAT GENERALLY ARE PROVIDED BY OUR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS. AND THINGS LIKE THE HOTEL-MOTEL TAX, LOOKING AT AN INCREASE IN THAT, I THINK WE OUGHT TO DO. WE OUGHT TO -- I THINK THAT IT'S TIME TO BASICALLY BEGIN TO EXPLORE SOME OF THAT. YOU CAN'T HAVE -- YOU CAN'T -- AND SENATOR MCKIBBEN SAYS WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO SPEND SOME POLITICAL CAPITAL. THIS MIGHT BE ANOTHER AREA WHERE WE HAVE TO DO THAT.

Glover: AND DO YOU AGREE WITH HIS PREMISE THAT THE WAY YOU DO IT IS LEAVING ALONE RESIDENTAL AGRICULTURE AND USING GENERAL STATE MONEY TO BUY DOWN COMMERCIAL? IS THAT EVENTUALLY THE ROUTE YOU'RE GOING TO GO?

Bolkcom: I THINK WE NEED TO -- IF WE'RE GONNA -- THERE ARE THREE CHOICES. WE CAN EITHER CUT LOCAL SERVICES BY JUST TAKING AWAY THE MONEY. WE CAN SHIFT TAXES, WHICH I DON'T THINK THE LEGISLATURE IS OF A MIND TO DO, OR WE CAN COME UP WITH STATE REVENUE AND GIVE DOLLAR-FOR-DOLLAR PROPERTY TAX REFORM IN THAT WAY. AND I THINK THAT'S PROBABLY -- THAT'S ONE SOLUTION. I THINK THE OTHER SOLUTION IS TO STOP BASICALLY THROUGH PUTTING A FLOOR OR A FREEZE ON THE CURRENT ROLLBACK IS ALSO ANOTHER MECHANISM THAT I THINK WOULD ESSENTIALLY FREEZE THINGS IN PLACE AND NOT MAKE THE COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX ISSUE EVEN WORSE.

Yepsen: BUT SENATOR BOLKCOM, HOW DIFFICULT IS IT GOING TO BE TO BUY DOWN COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX RATES WITH STATE INCOME AND SALES TAX DOLLARS? I MEAN YOU REPRESENT JOHNSON COUNTY. HOW ARE YOUR CONSTITUENTS GOING TO FEEL IF YOU GO BACK AND SAY TO THEM, I HAVE TO GIVE UP MONEY FOR THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA IN ORDER TO BUY DOWN PROPERTY TAXES?

Bolkcom: WELL, LET ME JUST SAY I'VE SERVED ON THE COUNTY OF BOARD OF SUPERVISORS, AND THE FIRST WEEK I SERVED I SUGGESTED WE OUGHT TO CUT THE PAY RAISE TO LOCAL ELECTED OFFICIALS ON THE BOARD. AND ONE OF MY COLLEAGUES SAID, 'YOU SOUND LIKE CHUCK GRASSLEY.' I THINK THERE ARE HARD DECISIONS HERE THAT WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO WRESTLE WITH. AND WE NEED -- IF THIS IS A PRIORITY FOR THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY, WE NEED TO FIND THE RESOURCES TO DO IT, BUT I DON'T THINK WE NEED TO NECESSARILY THROW ALL OUR OTHER PRIORITIES OUT THE WINDOW TO ADDRESS THIS COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX ISSUE.

Yepsen: ONE OF THE THINGS THAT STRIKES ME WITH THIS COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAX IS IT IS LIKE THE THREAD ON YOUR JACKET THAT YOU KEEP PULLING ON AND JUST PRETTY SOON THE WHOLE SLEEVE UNRAVELS. WHY NOT GET INTO THE WHOLE TAX SYSTEM, SENATOR? WHY NOT LOOK AT ALL OF THAT AND COME WITH A MORE COMPREHENSIVE SOLUTION INSTEAD OF JUST THIS, WELL, WE'LL BUY IT DOWN WITH STATE AND INCOME AND SALES TAX DOLLARS?

Bolkcom: WELL, UNLESS YOU CAN FIND SOME OTHER KINDS OF REVENUE, WHICH I DON'T KNOW THAT -- YOU KNOW, THE OTHER THINGS THAT YOU MENTIONED, THERE'S NOT VERY MANY CHOICES HERE. I DON'T THINK THAT THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY IS OF A MIND TO RAISE TAXES ON AGRICULTURE, NOR DO I THINK THEY'RE OF A MIND TO RAISE TAXES ON RESIDENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS. I THINK THE FOCUS AT THIS POINT IS MORE TARGETED TO TRYING TO PROVIDE SOME REFORM FOR COMMERCIAL PROPERTY OWNERS.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, THE DEMOCRATS NOW HAVE CONTROL OF BOTH CHAMBERS OF THE LEGISLATURE, AND I'D BE OUT OF LINE IF I DIDN'T ASK A FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY QUESTION. ARE YOU -- ARE YOU IN FAVOR OF ELIMINATING FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY TO LOWER OTHER INCOME TAX RATES, AND IS THAT FEASIBLE IN THIS LEGISLATURE?

Bolkcom: WELL, I THINK WE OUGHT TO APPLY THE PRINCIPLES OF SIMPLICITY, FAIRNESS, AND COMPETITIVENESS WHEN WE TALK ABOUT OUR INCOME TAX SYSTEM AS WE APPROACH THE QUESTION OF FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY. I THINK BOTH SENATOR MCKIBBEN AND I THINK -- AGREE THAT FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY IS A COMPETITIVENESS ISSUE THAT WE OUGHT TO RESOLVE. AND ONE WAY TO RESOLVE IT IS TO ELIMINATE FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY. WHEN WE DO THAT, WE CAN LOWER RATES ACROSS THE BOARD AND I THINK MAKE OUR SYSTEM MORE SIMPLE BY LOOKING AT THE COUPLING WITH THE FEDERAL DEDUCTIONS AND EXEMPTIONS THAT WOULD BASICALLY TAKE OUR INCOME TAX FORM FROM THE MOST COMPLICATED IN THE COUNTRY TO ONE OF THE SIMPLEST.

Glover: IS IT REALISTIC THIS YEAR?

Bolkcom: I THINK THERE'S WORK TO BE DONE TO DO OUR HOMEWORK AND MAKE THOSE RUNS AND LOOK AT HOW WE CAN COME UP WITH A REVENUE NEUTRAL PROPOSAL IN THAT AREA.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, FEDERAL DEDUCTABILITY, IT'S BEEN AN AWFUL THING FOR REPUBLICANS FOR YEARS AND YEARS. DOES IT REMAIN?

McKibben: AS THE LISTENERS PROBABLY WON'T REMEMBER BUT YOU MIGHT, I DID HAVE THE BILL IN WAYS AND MEANS ABOUT THREE YEARS AGO THAT ELIMINATED IT, AND IT WAS A TAX REDUCTION FOR ALL CLASSES OF TAXPAYERS IN IOWA. WE WEREN'T ABLE TO MOVE THAT BECAUSE, IN FACT, TO GET IT REVENUE NEUTRAL, WE HAD TO REDUCE ALL TAXES, AND WE ENDED UP WITH A LITTLE BIT OF THE CLASS WARFARE ISSUE BEING DISCUSSED AT THAT POINT IN TIME. I THINK THE OTHER CONCERN THAT REPUBLICANS HAVE AND MY CAUCUS HAS IS, YOU KNOW, WE HAVEN'T HAD THE DEBATE ON PROTECTING THE TAXPAYERS OR GIVING THE TAXPAYERS THE RIGHT TO VOTE FOR TAX INCREASES OR SOME METHODOLOGY OF BEING CERTAIN THAT WHEN THE REAGAN TAX CUTS CAME IN IN THE 1980S, WE ROLLED THOSE DOWN. THEY ELIMINATED A LOT OF THE DEDUCTIONS THAT WE HAD ON THE ITEMIZED SCHEDULE 'A.' AND WHAT HAPPENED THEN? IT BECAME VERY EASY TO GO ONE POINT, TWO POINTS, THREE POINTS, FOUR POINTS. AND THAT'S WHAT THE CONCERN OUT THERE IS. IT'S A COMBINATION IN OUR CAUCUS OF, YOU KNOW, WE WOULD LOOK AT A SIMPLIFIED TAX SYSTEM. WE WOULD LOOK AT SOMETHING THAT WAS SIMPLER AND LOWER AND FLATTER, WHICH CLEARLY IS THE WAY TO GO IN MY ESTIMATION. BUT THERE'S NO PROTECTION FOR THE TAXPAYERS OUT THERE TO THE NEXT LEGISLATURE SIMPLY JUST ROLLING THE RATES UP ON THEM.

Glover: YEAH, BUT ISN'T THIS THE IDEAL TIME TO HAVE THAT DEBATE? YOU'VE GOT A NEW GOVERNOR COMING IN THAT WILL PROBABLY SIGN IT.

McKibben: I'M NEVER OPPOSED TO HAVING THE DEBATE, AS LONG AS THE COROLLARY ON THE OTHER SIDE IS HOW DO WE PROTECT THE TAXPAYERS AND ENSURE THAT THE NEXT LEGISLATURE DOESN'T JUST SIMPLY SAY WE'RE GOING TO RAISE TAXES ON YOU.

Yepsen: SENATOR BOLKCOM, WE'VE BEEN TALKING ABOUT RAISING ALL KINDS OF TAXES AND WHETHER OR NOT THE LEGISLATURE IS GOING TO DO IT. HOW ABOUT LOOKING AT SOME OF THE THE TAX BREAKS, CREDITS, TAX EXPENDITURES. THE LEGISLATURE SPENDS A LOT OF TIME DECIDING HOW TO SPEND MONEY. YOU SPEND A LOT OF TIME DECIDING WHOSE TAXES ARE GOING TO BE RAISED. WHY DON'T YOU -- WILL THIS BE THE SESSION THAT GOES BACK AND LOOKS AT EVERY TAX BREAK THAT'S EVER BEEN HANDED OUT IN THIS STATE AND SAYS DO WE STILL NEED TO DO IT? YOU KNOW, DO WE STILL NEED TO GIVE A $500,000-A-YEAR SALES TAX BREAK TO MASSAGE THERAPISTS IN IOWA?

Bolkcom: DAVID, I THINK YOU'VE ASKED AN EXCELLENT QUESTION. I GIVE A LOT OF CREDIT TO MIKE RALSTON, THE FORMER HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE, WHO IS NOW THE HEAD OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY, WHO BASICALLY STARTED US ON A PATH TO DEVELOP A DATABASE OF ALL THE TAX CREDITS IN THE STATE. TWO YEARS AGO WE HAD NO IDEA WHO WAS GETTING WHAT TAX CREDITS FOR WHAT ACROSS A VARIETY OF PROGRAMS. AND HE PUT IN PLACE A SYSTEM TO COLLECT THAT INFORMATION. WE NEED FAR MORE TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY IN THAT PART OF THE BUDGET. WE PROVIDE A COUPLE HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS, SEVERAL MILLION DOLLARS TO PEOPLE IN THE TAX EXPENDITURE SIDE OF THE BUDGET, WITH NO OVERSIGHT OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY. WE NEED TO CHANGE THAT.

Yepsen: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, REPUBLICANS DON'T LIKE TAXES, BUT ARE YOU WILLING TO LOOK AT HOW YOU GIVE OUT TAX BREAKS TO SEE IF ALL THOSE TAX CUTS ARE FAIR?

McKibben: WELL, I THINK THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH EVER LOOKING AT THE ENTIRE PICTURE OF TAX RELIEF. BUT GOING BACK TO THE TIME I'VE BEEN IN THERE, DO YOU WANT TO ROLL AWAY THE 10-PERCENT ACROSS-THE-BOARD TAX REDUCTION THAT WE HAD? DO YOU WANT TO START TAXING LINEAL DESCENDANTS ON THEIR INHERITANCES THAT WE GOT RID OF SOME YEARS AGO? DO YOU WANT THE UTILITY TAX RATES TO GO BACK IN? WE TOOK THAT OFF. YOU KNOW, IS THAT A TAX BREAK OR IS THAT A REDUCTION FOR WORKING FAMILIES. I SUBMIT IT'S A REDUCTION FOR WORKING FAMILIES AND FOUGHT HARD FOR IT AND IT WAS BIPARTISAN. WE CAN LOOK AT THE WHOLE AREA. BUT IN GENERAL, YOU KNOW, WHEN YOU WE CUT INSURANCE INDUSTRY TAXES, WE'VE HAD TREMENDOUS GROWTH IN THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY IN DOWNTOWN DES MOINES. THERE'S RAMIFICATIONS FOR WHAT WE DID, AND WE HAD GOOD POLICY REASONS FOR DOING THEM. WE CAN LOOK AT THEM BUT THERE'S REASONS TO DO THEM.

Borg: SENATOR BOLKCOM, JUST A QUICK QUESTION ON LOCAL OPTION SCHOOL INFRASTRUCTURE TAX. JOHNSON AND LINN COUNTIES HAVE A VOTE COMING. THEY'RE THE ONLY TWO COUNTIES IN THE STATE THAT DON'T HAVE LOCAL OPTION TAX FOR SCHOOL INFRASTRUCTURE. THERE'S A PUSH ALSO FOR A STATEWIDE TAX LIKE THAT, RATHER THAN LOCAL OPTION. IS THE SUPPORT THERE IN THE LEGISLATURE TO DO THAT THIS YEAR?

Bolkcom: WELL, I THINK PEOPLE ARE LOOKING WITH GREAT INTEREST ON LINN AND JOHNSON COUNTY AND WHETHER THEY'RE GOING TO PASS THOSE OR NOT. SHOULD BOTH OF THOSE COUNTIES PASS THOSE LOCAL OPTION VOTES, I THINK THERE MIGHT BE SOME LOOKING AT THAT. BUT AT THIS POINT, THERE'S NO REAL DISCUSSION ABOUT A STATEWIDE SALES TAX. YOU KNOW, A LOT OF SCHOOL -- ALL THE SCHOOL DISTRICTS HAVE IT VIRTUALLY. THEY'VE BONDED. THEY HAVE COMMITMENTS. AND THERE MAY BE SOME CHALLENGES TO SIMPLY NOW HAVING -- MAKING IT STATEWIDE, GIVEN THOSE KINDS OF COMMITMENTS.

Glover: SENATOR BOLKCOM, WE'VE GOT LESS THAN A MINUTE TO GO, AND I'D LIKE YOU TO SPLIT THE TIME HERE.

Bolkcom: OKAY.

Glover: ONE OF THE THINGS THAT'S BEING TALKED ABOUT IS UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE. THERE PROBABLY WILL BE A BILL EXPANDING HEALTH CARE ACCESS. HOW DO YOU PAY FOR IT?

Bolkcom: WELL, I THINK THAT THE PROPOSAL THAT I'VE SEEN THUS FAR USES THE TOBACCO TAX MONEY AS A WAY TO PAY FOR THAT.

Glover: HOW MANY TIMES ARE YOU GOING TO SPEND THAT MONEY?

Bolkcom: WELL, I HAVEN'T SPENT IT ONCE YET.

Glover: SENATOR MCKIBBEN, THE SAME QUESTION TO YOU. UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE IS EXPENSIVE. EXPANDING HEALTH CARE IS EXPENSIVE.

McKibben: WELL, I THINK THE PROPOSAL OUT THERE IS PROBABLY NOT DOABLE TO TAKE OVER GOVERNMENT PAID FOR SYSTEM. THE REPUBLICANS WILL HAVE A BILL OUT THERE PROBABLY WHEN WE DISCUSS MINIMUM WAGE, ABOUT ADDING SOME HELP TO SMALL BUSINESS EMPLOYERS TO FURNISH TAX CREDITS FOR THEM FURNISHING HEALTH INSURANCE. THAT'S I THINK WHERE WE NEED TO GO, THROUGH A MARKET-BASED APPROACH RATHER THAN A GOVERNMENT-DRIVEN APPROACH. AND I THINK IT WILL BE OUT THERE. WE WILL HAVE THAT DISCUSSION BECAUSE HEALTH INSURANCE IS ONE OF THOSE TOP-TIER ISSUES FOR BOTH PARTIES.

Borg: WE'RE OUT OF TIME. THANKS SO MUCH FOR SPENDING TIME WITH US TODAY. WELL, THAT'S IT FOR THIS WEEK'S EDITION OF 'IOWA PRESS.' WE'LL RETURN NEXT WEEKEND, REGULAR 'IOWA PRESS' AIRTIMES: THAT'S FRIDAY NIGHT AT 7:30 AND SUNDAY MORNING AT 11:30. I'M DEAN BORG. THANKS FOR JOINING US TODAY HERE ON STATEWIDE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION.

FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY 'FRIENDS,' THE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION FOUNDATION; BY THE IOWA BANKERS ASSOCIATION... FOR PERSONAL, BUSINESS, AND COMMERCIAL NEEDS, IOWA BANKS HELP IOWANS REACH THEIR FINANCIAL GOALS; AND BY THE ASSOCIATED GENERAL CONTRACTORS OF IOWA, THE PUBLIC'S PARTNER IN BUILDING IOWA'S HIGHWAY, BRIDGE, AND MUNICIPAL UTILITY INFRASTRUCTURE.


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