The Rebuild Iowa Commission will let Governor Culver decide whether a special legislative session is needed to address the funding issues raised by the flooding and tornadoes that hit the state.
Some commission members said Monday they thought a special session should be called to be sure the money is available as soon as possible.
General Ron Dardis, the leader of the Iowa National Guard, is the chair of the commission. Dardis says the commission will put together a "very strong" report with recommendations for the governor’s review. "If he thinks it requires a special session, then I’m sure he’ll do that," Dardis says.
Dardis says the commission is doing what it was created to do by giving the governor all the information he needs to decide whether or not to call a special session. Dardis says if the governor can take the appropriate steps through executive power to address the issues, then he may not call a special legislative session.
"But that’s clearly his decision to make, and I think what we needed to do was to bring forward those recommendations that he needed to review, so that he could make an informed decision," Dardis says.
The commission discussed a variety of issues, Dardis says there are a couple that stood out immediately. Dardis says housing needs clearly rose to the top and the unmet needs that are just under one billion dollars. He says FEMA needs to continue to work to get the temporary housing into the state, and they are. He says another extremely important issue is getting aid to small businesses.
Dardis says they’ve talked about forgivable loans, and also helping people manage the maze of paperwork as they try to work through the recovery process. The commission met for the past two days to put together a draft of the report to the governor, and will hold a telephonic meeting Friday to look over the final draft. The report is due to the governor on September 2nd.
To find out more about the commission’s work, visit the Rebuild Iowa Office website.