Governor Kim Reynolds has taken action on all the bills that cleared the 2020 legislative session — and she approved changes in how county election officials verify the identity of Iowans asking to vote with an absentee ballot.
Republican lawmakers say they want to prevent absentee ballot abuse. County auditors will have to call, email, or write a letter to a voter if an absentee ballot request form has inaccuracies. Election officials say voters often transpose numbers on their birth dates or list a Social Security number rather than their voter ID number on the form.
Under current practice, county election officials are able to check voter registration data and correct errors before sending an absentee ballot. Critics say the new process could prevent some voters from getting an absentee ballot before the November election and this law change may be challenged in court.
The governor’s signature on key bills yesterday confirms the state budget plan the Republican-led legislature crafted. However, Reynolds rejected a provision that would have limited the amount of state spending set aside for the Iowa Veterans Home that can be carried forward to the next budgeting year.
She also vetoed a bill. It would have required any Iowa government to sell property to the highest responsible bidder unless a supermajority of a city council, county board of supervisors, or the legislature had good cause to decide otherwise. Reynolds says she understands there may be disputes over property sales, but she says there can be reasonable factors that lead government officials to sell a property to someone other than the highest bidder.