Capitol Comments by Rep. Curt Hanson
State Representative Curt Hanson, represents Iowa House District 82, which includes most of Jefferson County and Davis and Van Buren counties, in the state legislature.
This was sent Thursday.
I recently had the pleasure of helping Genevieve Drish of Fairfield celebrate her 106th birthday.
Mrs. Drish is one of only 200 Iowans who have celebrated a centenarian birthday in 2013.
The senior center was nearly filled and it was nice to see so many people enjoying lunch and fellowship with their peers.
During my lifetime, we have made great strides in helping the elderly enjoy the dignity they deserve in their later lives.
Iowa’s economy continues to recover and there is a lot of good news to share.
Iowa continues to have one of the nation’s strongest economies, a highly skilled workforce and a world-class education system.
According to the financial news organization 24/7 Wall St., Iowa is the fifth best financially managed state in the nation. The report cited Iowa’s strong credit rating, low debt ratio per capita, low unemployment and low percentage of citizens living below the poverty line.
Iowa businesses are planned to save $104 million next year after state officials dropped the unemployment insurance tax rate from 2 percent to 1.6 percent.
More students than ever are graduating from high school ready for college in the key benchmarks of English, math, reading and science.
Iowa students also have the second best ACT scores in the nation.
Even with the good news, we’re going to keep working to strengthen our economy and create new jobs in community large and small.
One of the ways to do that is improving and expanding access to fresh, local foods from local farmer’s markets and road-side fresh food stands. Buying food produced at local farms is good for local economies and our environment.
It’s why the Legislature funded Iowa’s Local Food and Farm Program last session to empower farmers and food entrepreneurs to provide for strong local food economies that promote self-sufficiency and job growth in the agricultural economy.
It is easy to find a farmer’s market or food stand in our local communities or go online to www.agriculture.state.ia.us/horticultureandFarmersMarket.asp for more information.
Hanson serves on the House Agriculture, Education, Natural Resources and Transportation committees, as well as the Education Appropriations Subcommittee.