Next Tuesday Iowans will turn out to the polls to vote in municipal elections. These elections can have a significant impact on our daily lives. City councils control a significant portion of the property taxes Iowans pay. They decide how development will proceed, how parks are built and maintained, and many other aspects close to the lives of residents in our communities.
Last session the Iowa Legislature passed a law allowing fireworks to be purchased and used. That law also gave city councils discretion on a number of policies related to the times and dates those products may be used. The legislature also reformed Iowa’s collective bargaining laws to allow municipal leaders more flexibility and control over their communities.
Finally, the legislature merged the date of city and school board elections for future years. This change will reduce the number of elections for Iowans and it is expected to increase participation in both city and school board elections. That increased involvement allows Iowans a better opportunity to become engaged on local issues.
Policies at the federal level make headlines and draw much conversation and debate, however, the elections in our cities and towns often impact our lives more directly than those in Washington, D.C. I hope you plan to take a few minutes next Tuesday to make your voice heard in municipal elections in your community.
Let’s make it happen!