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Reynolds Calls for Tax Reform in First Condition of the State Address

kim reynolds
John Pemble
Gov. Kim Reynolds delivers her first Condition of the State address Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018.

Gov. Kim Reynolds called for tax reform Tuesday in her first Condition of the State address before the Iowa Legislature.

Reynolds says her proposal will include personal income tax cuts for this year. She says she also wants to reduce corporate taxes, but "this is not the year" because of a tight state budget.

After a federal tax overhaul passed late last year, Reynolds is proposing eliminating Iowans’ ability to deduct their federal taxes from their state income taxes.

"When the federal government cuts taxes for farmers and small businesses, Iowa raises taxes on farmers and small businesses," Reynolds says. "That’s not just a hypothetical. It’s what will happen if we don’t act."

After the speech, some Republican lawmakers said they want to alter the tax code, but they did not commit to specific changes. 

Reynolds says she wants a water quality bill to be the first piece of legislation she signs. 

"Let me assure you, passage of this monumental legislation does not mean the water quality discussion is over; rather, it ignites the conversation to implement and scale practices that will continue to make an impact on water quality," Reynolds says. 

Iowa's first female governor also took a moment to discuss sexual harassment. 

Lawmakers stood up for a long round of applause when Reynolds said sexual harassment must stop. She says it’s not a partisan issue, and it can’t be fixed with legislation alone.

Reynolds says those in public office should ensure a safe workplace and serve as a model for others.

"What we do here matters," Reynolds says. "Iowans are watching. We can’t change behavior everywhere, but we have an obligation to lead and, as long as I am governor, we’re going to."

Capitol offices are reviewing workplace policies following a $1.75 million sexual harassment settlement against Senate Republicans involving a former Senate GOP staffer.

After the speech, Senate Democratic Leader Janet Petersen told reporters she thinks the governor was genuine in expressing her concerns about the environment at the statehouse. 

Reynolds also discussed education funding, workforce development, mental health, Medicaid privatization and rural broadband. 

Read the full speech here