Tag: Natural Resources & Environment Committee

Natural Resources & Environment Committee – All-Bill Summary 2019

SF 86 – Anatomical donor info for DNR licenses and education

SF 282 – Repeal of Honey Creek Premier Destination Park bond program

SF 409– Administrative procedures by DNR

SF 548 – Prohibits revolving loan funds to acquire land

HF 325 – Legal weapons for non-ambulatory hunters

HF 604 – DNR contracts with out-of-state companies removing rough fish

 

SF 86 – Anatomical donor info for DNR licenses and education

SF 86 would establish hunting, fishing and trapping licenses issued by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) as accepted records for a person to record their registration as an organ donor under the anatomical gift law. The bill makes a number of conforming changes to the anatomical gift law to add these documents as accepted records, including:

  • Allowing a minor who is at least 14 to register their anatomical gift on a hunting, fishing or fur harvester license, with the signed approval of a parent or guardian;
  • Authorizing a symbol to be placed on the license indicating the anatomical gift;
  • Providing that the revocation of the hunting, fishing or fur harvester license does not invalidate the gift on the Iowa donor registry;
  • Including the DNR as a resource for hospitals and organ procurement agencies to determine if an individual has made an anatomical gift.

DNR must include a section on applications for hunting, fishing or fur harvester licenses for the applicant to request placement of the anatomical gift symbol. The DNR will also include information on becoming an organ donor as part of its hunter education and safety certificate program.

The legislation is known as “Logan’s Law” in memory of Logan Luft, who died as a result of an all-terrain vehicle accident. His family was able to donate his organs and tissue. Logan was made aware of the organ donation option when he applied for a motor vehicle operator’s permit. His family advocated for expanding anatomical gift donor information and education to memorialize Logan’s life and broaden the reach of organ and tissue donation programs.
[4/24: 50-0]

 

SF 282 – Repeal of Honey Creek Premier Destination Park bond program

SF 282 repeals Code language regarding the Honey Creek Premier Destination Park bond program. The bond program was established to finance construction and development of the Honey Creek Destination Resort State Park. The Legislature appropriated money for defeasement of the bonds in 2013, and the bonds were redeemed on June 1, 2016. By function of the Code language establishing the bond authority, the authority was dissolved two years after the redemption of the bonds on June 1, 2018.

The bill makes a technical change to preserve existing Code language regarding competitive bidding requirements for the resort. The Code language that established the bond authority included an exemption for purchases related to operation of the resort, but not to development or construction of facilities at the resort. Because the park remains in operation (even though the bond authority has been dissolved), the competitive bidding language will be maintained in a new Code section.
[3/11: 46-0 (Absent: Edler, J. Smith, Zaun; Vacant: Danielson)]

 

SF 409– Administrative procedures by DNR

SF 409 is a Department of Natural Resources (DNR) proposal that makes a number of changes to administrative procedures. Changes include:

  • Standardizing administrative appeal procedures. Existing laws provide 30 days to appeal or do not establish a timeframe. Additionally, the start of an appeal period is variously defined or not defined. The proposed revisions establish a consistent period of 60 days from when DNR mails the order.
  • Clarifying that a rural water utility can construct extensions of sewer or water supply systems under existing permitting authority in certain circumstances.
  • Allowing for waiver of certain requirements for written permits. Under the bill, the Environmental Protection Commission (EPC) may allow exemptions for a class of disposal systems or the DNR director may allow exemptions for individual systems.
  • Exempting DNR from having to publish notices for public water supply permits in a local newspaper, although public notice is still required.
  • Directing DNR to send information on an administrative order to the attorney representing the party in the matter.
    [4/23: 50-0]

 

SF 548 – Prohibits revolving loan funds to acquire land

SF 548 prohibits the use of non-point source water pollution control projects that receive funding through the state’s revolving loan fund to be used to acquire property for future donation or sale to the state, a political subdivision or the federal government. It also prohibits the state or political subdivisions from acquiring land that was purchased using assistance from the state’s revolving loan fund. The bill exempts land purchases to accommodate edge of field practices.

Non-point source water quality projects can include:

  • Restoration of wildlife habitat
  • Stream bank stabilization
  • Wetland flood prevention areas
  • Detention basins
  • Grassed waterways
  • Ponds or wetland systems
  • Soil quality restoration
  • Other practices that are shown to improve or protect water quality

Placing restrictions on projects that use state revolving loan fund assistance addresses concerns that these types of purchases make it more expensive or more difficult for famers to acquire farmland. Farmers wishing to buy the land get loans through a financial institution at rates higher than those offered under the state’s revolving loan fund. However, the private entities that use the revolving loan fund generally work with willing landowners to acquire the property and often want restrictions on the future development of the land.
[4/23: 33-17 (Yes: Republicans, Kinney)]

 

HF 325 – Legal weapons for non-ambulatory hunters

HF 325 would allow a non-ambulatory hunter who was issued a deer license for one hunting season to use an unfilled deer license in a following season using the approved method of take for that season. Currently, the individual is limited to being issued a license for use during shotgun or muzzle loading rifle seasons only.
[4/15: 50-0]

 

HF 604 – DNR contracts with out-of-state companies removing rough fish

HF 604 restricts DNR from awarding contracts to commercial operators for the removal of rough, undesirable or injurious fish from inland waterways. The bill prohibits DNR from awarding contracts to entities from states that do not allow Iowa companies to apply for these types of contracts. This bill is meant to address a situation that has arisen when other states eliminate contracts for the harvesting of rough fish. Companies from those states come to Iowa and underbid Iowa companies on contracts. The bill allows DNR to restrict commercial harvester licenses to entities from states that also allow the commercial harvesting of rough fish.

Laborers hired by contractors or subcontractors may work without a license. This will allow companies applying for licenses and contracts to employ individuals from other states.
[4/24: 49-1 (No: R. Taylor)]