ONE HEALTHY SIGN: State tax revenues for the first half of this fiscal year are up 9.1 percent compared to the same period a year ago, a sign that Iowa’s economy is trending up. Iowa’s state government budget remains fiscally healthier than most other states, many with deep red ink.
MORE HELP FOR HOMELESS: Family Promise of Linn County is filling a gap in providing help for homeless families. The local affiliate of a national program coordinates churches that provide shelter, food, job-hunting advice and other assistance to help families get back on their feet. Linn County has 13 churches involved in the initiative. The most recent county survey found 362 homeless people in Linn County, one-fourth of them children.
FAIRER PROCESS: Iowa Gov. Branstad announced a more reasonable process for felons to regain their voting rights. He has ordered that as long as felons released from serving sentences are making a good-faith effort toward paying off all of their court costs, fines and restitution, they can apply for voter eligibility. He also rescinded a requirement for applicants to provide their credit history reports, as well as other simplifications.
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