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Page 8 The Advocate News (Wilton-Durant, Iowa) Thursday, April 4, 2013

Opinion
Nuclear: Nothing will drop the fear-generating stigma

must admit that upon learning of the meeting between noted except for nuclear. MidAmerican Energy and Saving Americas Farmground The one alternative in particular that raised the same red and Environment (SAFE) March 26 at the Wilton Com- flag with me that Kaufmann spoke about was natural gas. munity Center, I quickly marked my calendar. Clearly based on Glenneys introduction of SAFE and its However, I was reminded of another date that I had circled objectives, constructing a natural gas plant is the alternative on my calendar six months ago. On the group seems to be pushing for if Sept. 21 of last year, the AN broke of course a plant is built near Wilton at a story about a nuclear feasibility all. I can hardly believe MidAmerican study that was coming to Muscatine wouldnt know that coming in. County via MidAmerican Energy. My second thought is simpler still. I spoke with Tina Potthoff, a media There is nothing MidAmerican can relations manager for MidAmerican, say or do to drop the fear associated who answered several of my questions with the word nuclear. in a very polite, civil manner. In fact, When I write the word nuclear, how By Derek Sawvell she even urged for me to stay in touch does it make you feel? When you hear and talked about how MidAmerican the word nuclear, what is your immediwas happy to answer my questions and inform the public. ate thought/reaction? We learned of a meeting between MidAmerican and around It makes us uneasy. It scares us. 55 area land owners that was to occur Sept. 25 at the Wilton We can be flooded with all the statistics in the world; We Community Center. can be given lessons on newer, smaller, more efficient reactors The date was circled and when our own Barb Rochholz that dont rely on manpower for shutdown, etc. Yet no matter arrived at the Wilton Community Center Sept. 25, she was how many lessons we receive in nuclear power, nothing will met outside the center doors by a MidAmerican representa- drop the fear-generating stigma that comes along with the tive and Wilton chief of police Tim Leathers. idea of a nuclear plant in our backyard. We, along with all other media representatives, were *** DENIED access to the meeting. So much for the perceived Locks of LoveLast week my family received a heartwarmopenness I felt from Potthoff. ing surprise when my cousin Hayley Krebs (a Durant High That was MidAmericans first wrong move in a series of School grad and current University of Iowa student) contacted moves that former state Rep. Jeff Kaufmann called hiding my mother and told her she was going to get her hair cut to behind the law at last weeks public meeting (see story make a donation to Locks of Love. beginning on page 1). Like any 21-year old woman, Hayley was nervous to have I have to commend SAFE, namely meeting facilitator what she called short hair. However, the donation was imDwight Glenney, for starting at the grass roots level to or- portant to her. The donation was in her aunt Tamis name. ganize such an informative gathering. Its also important to My mothers courageous battle with breast cancer deeply recognize MidAmerican for sending two representatives to touched Hayley and this isnt the only thing shes done to give what I understand was a very similar presentation to the commemorate my mothers fight. one given in September. A year or two ago, she and my mother each got matching Naturally, we strive for openness here at the AN. Glenney tattoos of butterflies with breast cancer ribbons printed within was saying the right things when he opened the meeting by the wings. stating he wanted MidAmerican to educate the public by With regard to her recent Locks of Love donation, she showing a presentation that it denied media access to six posted the following on her Facebook page March 28: months ago. Had MidAmerican not hid in the shadows in Well, tomorrow is the BIG DAY where I take the plunge September, perhaps our citizens wouldnt still be filled with and cut off my long hair & donate to Locks of Love in honor as much questions as they have today. of my aunt Tami who fought breast cancer nervous & At this point, Ill refrain from taking a strong stance, as anxious would be an understatement. Im continuing to let what I'm learning sink in a bit. And 15 inches later, after a hair cut at LaJames in Iowa Yet some immediate thoughts I had are quite simple: 1) City, Hayley was a new woman. Confident and stunning as Kaufmann was right when he told MidAmerican he thought always. Ive added a photo collage so our readers can see the its presentation was pushing us toward nuclear. He was transformation. It was a wonderful gesture. I, along with my right when he said that with all the other alternative energy mother, was deeply moved. sources mentioned, it seemed there were more cons than pros Locks of Love is a nonprofit organization that specializes

Case in Point

Hayley Krebs recently donated 15 inches of hair to Locks of Love in honor of her aunt Tami Sawvell of Wilton. Contributed photos in providing hair pieces to financially disadvantaged children in Canada and the U.S. under the age of 21. The mission of Locks of Love is to return a sense of self, confidence and normalcy to children suffering from hair loss by utilizing donated ponytails to provide the highest quality hair prosthetics to financially disadvantaged children. Hair donated must be at least 10 inches in length and must be pony-tailed or braided for delivery. To see more guidelines or learn more about the organization, go to locksoflove.org. To Hayley, if you are reading this, thanks for warming our hearts, making us smile and brightening our week. Youre beautiful, inside and out.

'No bill is completely dead until legislature adjourns'


This week marks the second and final funnel week. Any bill sent to the House and Senate from the other chamber has until April 5 to pass committee. Any bill that doesnt pass committee is considered dead. It is not uncommon, however, for dead bills to reappear later in debate in the form of amendments or even in the final negotiations. No bill is completely dead until the legislature adjourns. This week I would like to go over some bills in detail with you. Most weeks I write on something high profile such as property taxes or Medicaid expansion. This week I would like to highlight how our work up here can affect your lives on a daily basis. Not every issue will relate to you but my guess is that it could at some point in the future or it does affect someone you know right now. If the Governors alternative to Medicaid expansion is introduced this week, I will discuss it in next weeks column. I ran HF-356 out of the Judiciary committee. The bill has to do with rent and the filing judgment and collection judgment of monies owed. This bill started off controversial. The Democrat on my subcommittee voted against it and it was a party-line vote in committee. I promised all of you back home that I would consider all ideas and be willing to listen to the other side. I worked with the two leading Democrats in opposition and they crafted an amendment that made the bill acceptable to them. The amendment didnt change the substance of my bill and to be honest, there is an argument that it improved the bill. A party line vote turned into a 97-0 vote on the House floor. As a landlord you now only have five years to file a judgment on rent on a written and oral contract but you have 10 years to collect. Current law allowed 10 years to file while only rate programs for schools to use their reform having two years to execute the judgment. The dollars. This means rural and small schools problem people were running into was tenants have more choices on how to best utilize the defaulting on their rent, getting a good job and dollars instead of being forced to conform to having an ability to pay a cookie-cutter format. a few years later, and the I like the increased flexlandlord not being able ibility suggested by my to recoup losses. This Democratic colleagues. puts rent right in line The Senate provides with the other money $400 per pupil and judgments. 4 percent allowable HF-527 requires growth. The House bill DNA sampling of anyprovides 2 percent and one over 18 who is $305 per pupil. I anBy Rep. Bobby Kaufmann convicted of an aggraticipate a compromise vated misdemeanor. Current law only requires somewhere in the middle will be met as both collection of DNA under felony convictions. Chambers go into conference committee. A This law exempts required DNA sampling conference committee consists of members from code section 321 the section on moving from each chamber and each political party. violations. I believe this will be an excellent They exist to settle differences and seek comtool for law enforcement to help solve old mon ground. With split-party control in the crimes, exonerate any falsely convicted, and provide a key tool to protect our children from predators. HF-534 makes identity theft a Class D felony. Current law states that identity theft is only a Class D felony is the damages exceed Editor: Could you tell us why you voted no on the $1,000. There have been dozens of cases across Violence Against Women Act? As one of Iowa where identity thieves have purposely only 22 Senators to vote against reauthorizbeen stealing less than a $1,000 multiple times to avoid the felony classification. I believe this ing the 1994 Act which led to a 67 percent law will provide a deterrent to an increasing reduction in domestic violence against women problem of identity theft. HF-534 passed 87- between 1994 and 2010, what part of this law offends your sensibility? 11. Was it the legal assistance to the victims, The Senate Education Reform is on its way or the transitional housing, or the victims to the House but has not been brought over for hotline? Perhaps it was the expansion of proconsideration yet. Sen. Bob Dvorsky shared tection for Native American women who are a copy of it with me and here are a few of the highlights. The Senate bill provides four sepa- abused at two and a half times the national

Your Capitol Voice

legislature, the conference committee will be used often and hopefully with positive results. As we move towards the end of session there are five looming topics that are on the table: fuel tax, Medicaid expansion, property tax relief, education reform/funding and passing a budget. These will dominate most of our remaining time. This session has been a very bipartisan one for me so far. I will be working for actual results on the five issues above. Visitors to the Capitol: Jerry Anderson and Mark Heckman, West Liberty; Mark Ogden, North Liberty; Chad Ogden, Hills; Shady Henien, University of Iowa Medical School. Forums: April 6, Muscatine Community College, 9 a.m. Contact me: E-mail: bobby.kaufmann@legis.iowa.gov Phone: 515-281-3221 Mail: 1527 330th St. Wilton IA 52778

Questions for Senator Grassley


rate. Senator, let it be shown that when you had a chance to help the raped, beaten and otherwise abused women in this country, you chose to walk by on the other side of the road. So much for your partys claim to the religious high ground when you make decisions like this that show a lack of empathy, acceptance, compassion and concern for women, children, the poor, the weak, the elderly, the gay and GRASSLEY LETTER

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