Senate President Charles Schneider’s closing remarks as prepared
Senators, guests, fellow Iowans,
I would like to start by saying it is a great honor to serve as president and presiding officer of this body. The Iowa Senate is a made up of some of the best people our state has to offer. Each Senator in this chamber worked hard this legislative session to represent their communities to the rest of the state. Today, the legislative session ends and we return to the “citizen” part of being a citizen legislator. We return to towns like Council Bluffs, Dubuque, and Independence, proud to have done our part to serve our constituents.
Each of us ran for election to the Iowa Senate for our own reasons. But we share a common goal – to make Iowa the best state in America to live, work, and raise a family.
One of the main reasons I ran for office was to transform our state from one that continues to lose people and wealth to other states into one that is a magnet for both jobs and the people to fill that demand.
This session, we made great strides toward achieving this goal by passing the most significant tax reform in the history of our state.
The opportunity to overhaul our tax code does not come around often. So we aimed high. Our goals were to simplify our tax code, modernize it for a 21st century economy, make our state more competitive, and allow Iowans to keep more of their own money. I am proud to say the reforms offered by the Senate Republican caucus delivered on these goals.
The tax relief bill we passed provides $2 billion in tax cuts over the next six years. Once fully implemented, it will drive down rates for individuals, farmers, and employers. It will make it easier and less time consuming for the average Iowan to file a tax return. It will improve our ability to compete against other states for economic development opportunities. And, it creates more upside opportunity for entrepreneurs who leave their job to start a business, agree to take over their family farm, or commit their life savings to take on their dream venture.
Tax reform is a win for Iowans and I’m proud the Senate Republican caucus delivered.
In addition to serving as the President of the Senate, I am proud to serve as the Chair of the Appropriations Committee.
Iowa’s state government should thoughtfully consider every dollar it spends. Iowans expect that of us. This year, we passed a budget that is both responsible and funds our priorities.
Iowans across our state get up early, work long hours, and sacrifice their time and talent for benefit of their families and their communities. Iowans work hard for every dollar they make, every penny they earn. The very least we in this building can do is be good stewards of the dollars they send to the state.
In November 2016, Iowans decided they were tired of business as usual. They voted for a change. They voted for an Iowa where people have more money in their pockets. They voted for an Iowa where the laws of the state reflect the values of its citizens.
Our plan a year and a half ago was no secret. And, our goal four months ago was no different. Our objective was as simple as it was audacious – to make Iowa the best state in America.
This was not going to be just another General Assembly. I am proud to be a part of the most consequential General Assembly in the modern history of our state. Though our work is not done, I am confident the bills we passed this session will make our state a better place to live, work and raise a family.
Before we adjourn, I would like to wish everyone a safe, healthy and prosperous summer. Thank you for your hard work on behalf of your constituents and our state. God bless you and your families. And, God bless the great state of Iowa.