|Iowa Party Leader To Discuss Key Governance Issues With House Republican Leader and Staff|
|News Releases - Politics & Elections|
|Written by The Iowa Party|
|Monday, 29 August 2011 09:42|
State Fair Presence Connects With Many Inside the StatehouseDES MOINES, IOWA | Friday morning, August 26th, Jonathan R. Narcisse will be meeting at the state house with Representative Ralph Watts and House Republican staff. Earlier this week, the recent gubernatorial candidate and leader of the Iowa Party was asked to meet and discuss with staff more details concerning existing governance solutions.
Narcisse, an independent publisher and former Des Moines school board member, distributed thousands of copies of the Iowa Party's proposed governance solutions at their 2011 Iowa State Fair booth, located in the Varied Industries Building. “People who come to the fair are looking for something new and exciting. The Iowa Party is not a tough sell. And, when you have the chance to white board some facts and figures with your neighbor, the bells start going off.”
The Iowa Party's state fair booth inside the Varied Industry building provided Narcisse the opportunity to meet and speak with tens of thousands of Iowans, including many state legislators and statehouse staffers. “It's apparent that the legislature didn't review annual reports for departments and divisions appropriated hundreds of millions of tax dollars. That borders on misfeaceance, malfeasance and dereliction of duty by legislators who are voting billions of dollars in annual spending,” stated Narcisse.
A state representative's assistant who visited the fair shared that, “It gets worse. We vote on bills and appropriations and the next day party leadership sends us memos on what we voted for, especially towards session's end.”
"When Ralph Watts invited us to meet with him and House staff this Friday, we were pleased,” said Narcisse. “Most Iowans may not know him but he's a well placed and influential legislator.” In addition to serving on the Appropriations, Labor, Commerce and Transportation Committees, Watts chairs the powerful Administration and Regulations Appropriations subcommittee with oversight of key departments such as Commerce, Administrative Services, Revenue and Inspections and Appeals. Watts also serves on the joint House and Senate State Government Efficiency Review Commission.
“How do you tell a cop, a nurse, a teacher working the graveyard shift at a convenience store to make ends meet they have to pay taxes on overtime while statehouse leaders can't even bother to find out if a staffer at the Alcohol Bureau is giving out massive no bid contracts to his wife's best friend's husband?" stated Narcisse.
“It is clear our message of honest, efficient and accountable government is resonating. We have common sense solutions rooted in Iowa values and over the coming months and the next legislative session we are going to aggressively advocate for those solutions.”
The Iowa Party Strategy
by Jonathan Narcisse
The Iowa Party has three main goals:
• Improving how government operates,
• Improving the structure of government, and
• Following the money.
In order to achieve our mission we focus on boards and commissions, school boards, city and town councils and county office holders. Our legislators appropriate funds but they are not the ones that spend
the money or manage the details of governance.
We are not conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat leaning. We are not ideologically driven at all. We are about the nuts and bolts of governance at the state and local level. This translates into an emphasis on eliminating waste and inefficiency in state and local governance and improving accountability.
During last year's campaign I was painfully reminded of where the resources for operating government come from. One morning at 3:22 a.m. I stopped at the Hardees on S.E. 9th and Army Post Road. The young lady who took my order recognized me from my time on the Des Moines School Board and started a conversation. She had an infant, a daughter in high school and a second job she had to be at at 8:00 a.m.
When she buys diapers she pays an extra penny of sales tax. She deserves to know the $57 million addition to an area high school she's helping to build is being constructed in the most honest, efficient and accountable way. When a grandmother on fixed income buys her grandbabies bandages to cover scraped wounds she deserves to know her tax dollars are not going to a tax credit scheme or funding corruption at the Iowa Association of School Boards.
An examination of the 2011 legislative session confirms core issues of governance and accountability were not priorities of our Republican governor, the Democratic controlled Senate or the Republican controlled House. The political class in Iowa has lost its way. Both parties focus on distractions like dove hunting while pandering to special, vested and powerful lobbyist funded interests.
We focus on fixing government, fixing education and fixing the economy in our state. We do not ask Iowans to stop being Republicans or Democrats. In fact, we encourage Iowa Party people to be members of the two main parties, especially on February 6th at the caucus next year. We encourage them to become leaders within their parties at the precinct level. And we encourage them to challenge incumbents at the statehouse, if necessary, in the Democrat and Republican primaries, much like the Tea Party nationally has used primary challenges to transform the national G.O.P.
Statehouse leadership must embrace data driven governance.
For example, in FY 2010 the state spent $13.5 billion dollars.
Of that 39.6% was spent on Health and Human Services.
Yet there was no meaningful discussion about fixing Iowa's broken, wasteful, fraudulent and unaccountable welfare system. You would think an area that commands 40 cent of every dollar spent by our state government would warrant attention from our legislative leaders. Instead, they spent their time on matters most Iowans would consider trivial at best and costly distractions, too – such as dove hunting.
Equally egregious is how our governance leaders do business. Too many members of school boards and municipal councils are rubber stamps. Our legislators are rubber stamps, too. While members of the House and Senate are elected to represent Iowans from their districts they, by custom, first serve party leadership, second serve lobbyists and cronies, third spend time on their pet political priorities and last, if at all, deliberate on the real issues Iowans care about:
Efficient and accountable government,
Effective schools and educated Iowans,
A strong economy built around a responsible tax structure.
Jonathan Narcisse, the Iowa Party’s gubernatorial candidate finished third in the six person field behind Governors Branstad and Culver. He received nearly 22,000 votes from all 99 counties in Iowa and 1,720 of Iowa’s 1,774 precincts.
For more information contact Iowa Party spokesperson Jonathan R. Narcisse at 515-770-1218 or go to: www.iowaparty.org.
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