Governor Chet Culver has embarked on a statewide tour to tout what he considers the accomplishments of the Democratic-led legislature. During stops in Ottumwa and West Burlington Monday afternoon, Culver talked about education and health care issues. This morning at 9:30, Culver will be at Muscatine Power and Light to talk about the legislature’s energy initiatives.
"We just positioned ourselves to be perhaps the first state in the nation to offer every child health care. That’s a huge step in the right direction and I commend the legislature for that," Culver says. "We’re continuing to lead in renewable energy with another $25 million for the Iowa Power Fund. We’re going to continue to create jobs in every corner of the state because of it." Culver is also praising legislators for not taking action on one proposal.
"I’m really glad we didn’t raise gas taxes this session. I fought that tooth and nail," Culver says. "It’s not the time to raise prices at the pump with petroleum at record highs and prices at record highs all summer long at the pump." Culver’s not saying whether he’ll sign or veto controversial legislation which would expand the union bargaining rights of public-sector employees.
"I’ll let you know when I made a decision," Culver told reporters midday Monday. "…I’m glad the legislature sent me the bill, as I asked, and I’ve got 30 days to make a decision." Culver will visit a Bettendorf hospital later this morning (Tuesday). Then, early this afternoon at the National Czech and Slovak Museum in Cedar Rapids, the governor plans to sign a bill into law which would help Cedar Rapids develop its riverfront.