The new co-president of the state Senate is proposing that all gas pumps in Iowa dispense ethanol-blended fuel only. Senate Co-President Jack Kibbie, a democrat from Emmetsburg, says that’s the law in Minnesota. Kibbie says mandating that fuel with a 10 percent ethanol blend is something Iowa should do. He says Minnesota’s republican governor is now calling for changing that state’s law to eventually require a 20 percent ethanol blend. Republican Jeff Lamberti of Ankeny — the other Senate Co-President — would oppose state-government-mandated ethanol use. “I don’t like mandates,” Lamberti says. He would support more incentives to get more consumers to use ethanol-blended fuel. Last year, Senator Mark Zieman , a republican from Postville, tried but failed to get the senate to lower the state tax on ethanol blends in order to make ethanol even cheaper at the pump. Zieman says he was trying to provide an incentive rather than create a mandate, but he doesn’t know how the senate will shake out this year on the issue. Zieman is the new co-chairman of the Senate Ways and Means tax-writing committee.
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