Tag: Working families

Statement on latest revenue estimates

IA SEN NEWS
Oct. 16, 2018

Statement from Sen. Joe Bolkcom, Ranking Member of the Senate Appropriations Committee

“The fiscal mismanagement by Governor Reynolds and legislative Republicans is like a slow train wreck for everyday Iowans.

“Their smoke-and-mirrors shell game won’t erase the fact that the Governor and Republican-controlled Legislature have made job training and higher education unaffordable for thousands of Iowans, reduced protections for seniors and other vulnerable Iowans, and made health care less accessible for thousands of Iowans over the past two years.

“It’s no wonder that Iowans are clamoring for new leadership that will put their needs ahead of the self-interest of Wall Street corporations, special interests and millionaires. It’s time to put Iowans first again.”

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Two new laws will help protect your credit

1. Credit reporting agencies cannot charge fees when you freeze checks on your credit reports 

In the Equifax security breach last year, hackers stole Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and other personal information from 1.1 million Iowans.

Wary of identity theft, many consumers requested a freeze on their credit reports. They then learned that they had to pay a fee to get the freeze and pay again if they wanted to lift the freeze. Iowans have been paying some of the highest freeze-related fees in the nation, according to the state Attorney General.

This year, we banned Equifax, Experian, TransUnion and other credit reporting agencies from charging fees when Iowans freeze checks on their credit reports (SF 2177). Freezing prevents anyone, including an identity thief, from opening a new line of credit in your name. If you need to apply for a credit card, loan or job that requires a background check, you can have the freeze lifted, even temporarily.

 

2. Tougher penalties for criminals who use technology to steal your credit card

We’re also cracking down on illegally using technology to steal payment card information (HF 2199).

Criminals can access your credit and debit cards remotely through your clothes, wallet or purse, or place nearly undetectable “skimming devices” on gas pumps and other card readers that steal your information. Your card information can even be transferred to another card for the thieves to use later.

It is now a Class D felony punishable by up to five years in prison to use a scanning device to take payment card information without authorization, or to use an encoding machine to transfer information from one card to another. In addition, it will be an aggravated misdemeanor punishable by up to two years in prison to possess a scanning device intended to obtain payment card information without authorization.

 

Find helpful tips to avoid credit card fraud and identity theft on the Iowa Attorney General’s website. 

Proposal to close UI Labor Center is “latest gut punch” to Iowa workers

Iowa Senate News Release
For Immediate Release:  July 10, 2018  

 

Senator Joe Bolkcom statement on University of Iowa’s announcement of center closures and furloughs

“I am disappointed in the news about the center closures and furloughs.

“I am deeply disappointed at the proposed closure the UI Labor Center. This proposal is the latest gut punch to Iowa workers and their families. This is a terrible time to even consider closing the UI Labor Center.

“Since 1950, the Labor Center has helped make Iowa a better place to live and do business. It has helped workers and Iowa employers meet the changing workforce needs of the state. As an interdisciplinary educational and research center, it has helped educate students and advance the public’s understanding of work during a time of rapid change.

“It has also has leveraged its state appropriation in securing competitive federal grants for the university.

“While there is no doubt that the University of Iowa is under financial pressure because of the bad budget priorities of Governor Reynolds and the Republican Legislature, I hope that President Harreld will change his mind and reconsider this ill-advised decision that would only worsen Iowa’s efforts to build a strong, modern economy that rewards hard work.”

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