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Iowa DNR Views 2017 Priorities Amid Budget Uncertainty

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Annual joint meeting of the Iowa Natural Resources Commission, and the Environmental Protection Commission in Des Moines ( Roger Riley WHO-HD)

Annual joint meeting of the Iowa Natural Resources Commission, and the Environmental Protection Commission in Des Moines ( Roger Riley WHO-HD)

DES MOINES, Iowa- The State of Iowa is facing $110 million in budget cuts to state government, due to declining tax revenue.

That means some uncertainty over budgets next year,for many state agencies, including the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

“We don’t know what the numbers will be,” said DNR Deputy Director, Bruce Trautman, on how the budget will affect this agency. “We will talk with staff look at some of the areas where we have some opportunities for some other additional efficiencies, really no finalization’s yet from anyone on that.”

At an annual joint meeting of the Iowa Natural Resources Commission, and Environmental Protection Commission priorities for 2017 were named, including possible license fee increases, to help fund the Fish and Wildlife Trust Fund.

Also on the list of dollars tied to DNR goals is $9.6 million for Lake Restoration, and Water Quality improvements, continue multi-year funding of $5 million for infrastructure improvements at state parks. Also continue funding of REAP grants, or resource enhancement and Protection Program at $20 million.

The governing bodies would also like to see lawmakers pass the 3/8 cent sales tax into a trust fund, a measure approved by voters six years ago, but never funded by lawmakers.