The state legislature is a week past the target date for completing its work for the year.

Democratic Senator Rob Hogg of Cedar Rapids says Republicans are heading toward setting the record for the longest annual legislative session when the same party has had control of the executive and legislative branches of state government.

“So, if you can just keep this session grinding out another week and a half, you can set the record for futility in the management of a legislative session when you control the House, the Senate and the governorship,” Hogg says.

House Speaker Linda Upmeyer of Clear Lake says how long the legislature meets isn’t the paramount issue.

“We came here to do the people’s work, what they expect us to get done. We’re going to do that. I think they want it done correctly and, particularly, tax bills are very complicated,” Upmeyer says. “We want to make sure we get it right.”

This morning it took the Iowa Senate about six minutes to pray, recite the pledge and adjourn until two o’clock tomorrow. The Iowa House intends to return later this afternoon to debate bills that outline next year’s spending for some areas of the state budget later this (Wednesday) afternoon.

There have been extended legislative sessions in the distant past that lasted into the summer, but that was when the Iowa General Assembly met every other year. In the past three decades, the legislature has been meeting annually. Hogg says there have been nine times in the past 29 years that the same party controlled the legislative and executive branches of state government.