Iowa governor signs gender-affirming care ban, bathroom law
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has signed a pair of laws restricting the bathrooms transgender students can use and banning gender-affirming medical care amid a flood of legislation nationwide targeting the trans community. Reynolds, a Republican, met with parents of transgender children to discuss the bills before signing them Wednesday, The Des Moines Register reported. “My heart breaks,” Reynolds told reporters.news.yahoo.com
Police: 2 students dead, teacher hurt in Des Moines shooting
Two students were killed Monday and a teacher was injured in what police said was a targeted shooting at a Des Moines school that is dedicated to helping at-risk youth, and three suspects were arrested afterward. The shooting was at an educational program called Starts Right Here that is affiliated with the Des Moines school district. Police say emergency crews were called to the school, which is in a business park, just before 1 p.m. Officers arrived to find two students critically injured, and they started CPR immediately.news.yahoo.com
Democrat Finkenauer knocked off US Senate primary ballot
A state court judge has concluded that Democrat Abby Finkenauer cannot appear on the June 7 primary ballot for U.S. Senate because she didn’t gather enough petition signatures, knocking off the candidate considered by many to be the party’s best chance to unseat Republican U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley.
Iowa GOP: Benefit cuts needed to spur people to take jobs
Iowa is nearing passage of a dramatic reduction in unemployment benefits to try to force people to fill thousands of open jobs and reverse a trend in which the governor argues the state's “safety net has become a hammock." A measure supported only by the Republicans who control the Legislature would reduce allowable unemployment payments from 26 weeks to 16 weeks, placing Iowa among only six states with such severe limits. Currently, 40 states plus Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico pay up to 26 weeks of unemployment benefits, and Iowa has held to that standard for nearly 40 years.news.yahoo.com
Iowa governor signs restrictive transgender sports bill
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has signed into law a bill that prohibits transgender females from participating in girls high school sports and women’s college athletics, rejecting opponents' argument that she would harm vulnerable children to solve a nonexistent problem.
COVID falling in 49 of 50 states as deaths near 900,000
With the brutal omicron wave rapidly loosening its grip, new cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. are falling in 49 of 50 states, even as the nation's death toll closes in on another bleak round number: 900,000. The number of lives lost to the pandemic in the U.S. stood at over 897,000 as of midday Friday, with deaths running at an average of more than 2,400 a day, back up to where they were last winter, when the vaccine drive was still getting started. Similarly, an early-warning program that looks for the virus in sewage found that COVID-19 infections are declining in the majority of participating U.S. communities, according to data posted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.news.yahoo.com
Audit: Governor improperly used COVID funds for salaries
A state audit report on government spending released Monday accused Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds of using nearly $450,000 in federal coronavirus relief funds to pay salaries for 21 staff members for three months last year and concealing the spending by passing it through the state Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. State Auditor Rob Sand said a review of the state's payroll system shows the money was used to pay the Republican governor's office staff, but it's unclear why she had to take federal money to pay the salaries. “What is not clear, is why these salaries were not included in the governor’s budget set prior to the fiscal year and prior to the pandemic,” he said in the audit report.news.yahoo.com
Black Democratic chair gets lynching threat over Trump essay
The first Black chair of Iowa’s Democratic Party says he received a series of racist messages, including a lynching threat, after writing a newspaper op-ed criticizing former President Donald Trump and the state Republican officials who stood with him at a recent rally in Des Moines.
Local school boards emerge as hot races in November election
Races for local school board seats have emerged as intense political battlegrounds in the upcoming Nov. 2 elections across the U.S. Parental protests that started during COVID-19 lockdowns are evolving into full-fledged board takeover campaigns.
How scientists are creating technology based on a beetle's exoskeleton that could help end water scarcity
Two-thirds of the world's population faces an extreme water shortage at least one month a year. Many of these places are dry, arid deserts with no reliable source of fresh water — other than fog, that is. But fog capture isn't as easy as you might think, at least for us humans. The Namib Desert beetle, on the other hand, has practically perfected the art. Here's how scientists are creating technology based on the beetle's exoskeleton that could help end water scarcity.news.yahoo.com
Billboard targeting Gov. Kim Reynolds to be removed after backlash
A hard-to-miss billboard downtown is facing its most vocal opposition by liberals online, despite it being commissioned by a PAC that opposes Gov. Kim Reynolds.Stay on top of the latest market trends and economic insights with Axios Markets. Subscribe for freeState of play: The billboard along I-235 East and Keo Way was purchased by OPE! PAC and claims Reynolds contributed to the state's 42% increase in abortions under her tenure between 2018-20. (The numbers are accurate via Iowa Department ofnews.yahoo.com
Multiple Republican Governors Reject CDC Mask Guidance Renewal
Multiple Republican governors rejected the CDC's mask guidance renewal Tuesday that recommends some vaccinated individuals in locations with greater rates of infection, as well as everyone in K-12 schools, resume mask-wearing in certain indoor venues.news.yahoo.com