We can all agree that the last year and half has been tough. Our country has had
to navigate a pandemic that has cost us time away from loved ones, forced kids out of the classroom, and cost some their jobs or income.
While the divisions today seem overwhelming, Iowans agree that we need to move forward with a comprehensive approach to COVID recovery. We need to stop the spread of the COVID, remove barriers so Iowans can go back to work, and help Iowans get their lives back to normal.
While there were several opportunities to remove barriers like child care, housing, and affordable health care during the last legislative session, the Governor and Republican lawmakers largely ignored COVID-19, and any long-term recovery efforts to get Iowans back to work.
Fortunately, President Biden and Democrats are working to ensure a full recovery for all Iowans. Here are just two examples of how we’re making a big difference for everyday Iowans.
Boost for Iowa Families
Starting in July, thousands of Iowa families started receiving a monthly financial boost through the expanded child tax credit. Thanks to President Biden and Rep. Cindy Axne, the expanded tax credit will provide a monthly $250 supplement for each child ages 6 to 17, and $300 monthly for each child under 6. That equals out to more than $156 million to help 618,000 Iowa children over the next year.
Iowa has a lack of affordable housing. According to a recent Census Bureau survey, 84,663 Iowans are behind on rent, and about 30,000 are worried they may be evicted from their homes.
To help Iowans impacted by COVID keep a roof over their heads, Iowa received $195 million earlier this year to develop the Iowa Rent and Utility Assistance Program. The federally funded program helps Iowans cover past-due rent and utility bills if they lost their job or experienced financial hardship due to the pandemic.
Unfortunately, an investigative report found Governor Reynolds is withholding this financial assistance from thousands of Iowans who may be facing eviction. While the President took action again to prevent Iowans from losing their homes, the Governor needs to end the delays, cut red tape, and get the assistance into the hands of Iowans quickly before they lose their homes.
Iowans can apply for rental & utility assistance here.
Please know you can reach me at any time. I'm here to work on your behalf.
Representative Jennifer Konfrst
Iowa House District 43