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Introduction from Emily Shields

This week, more policy bills began to move as the legislative session progressed. We are registered in favor of two companion bills that would add all part-time students to the Last Dollar Scholarship (see Bill Watch for details). Tax proposals have now been released by the Governor, House and Senate. The bills have some differences, so negotiations are ongoing to come to agreement on the path forward. Decisions on this will greatly impact budget conversations, which are on hold until there is agreement. On our blog this week, we talk about Adult Education at Iowa’s Community Colleges, including sharing some new information about how the pandemic has impacted these students. Check it out and share widely and look to our social media channels for stories about our adult education and literacy students. 

New Law Impacts In-State Travel

Beginning January 1, 2022, lodging providers such has hotels and motels must have all employees successfully complete certified human trafficking prevention training to receive public funds as payment for services. This means community college funds can only go to providers who have met this requirement and been certified. The Iowa Department of Public Safety’s Office to Combat Human Trafficking is charged with facilitating the new law and will be responsible for certifying the curriculum used in the training and that the lodging provider has met the training requirement.  The Office to Combat Human Trafficking has set up a new website StopHTIowa.org. The Website contains human trafficking prevention training, an interactive map of state-certified lodging providers, and a tip/reporting application. Please look for providers on this site before making future hotel reservations.

Vaccine Update

OSHA is withdrawing the November 5, 2021, emergency temporary standard (ETS) which would have required large employers (100 or more employees) to require vaccination or weekly testing for their employees. The withdrawal is effective January 26, 2022.

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