House District 68 in Linn County includes Marion, Bertram and Ely.
Name: Molly Donahue
Residence: Cedar Rapids
Education: Bachelor’s, Iowa State University; master’s, University of Northern Iowa
What are the three most important issues facing Iowans, and how would you address them?
• Privatization of Medicaid: Vulnerable Iowans find themselves without the services they need. We must pay providers on time. Medical care organizations are not meeting their financial obligations. Many providers refuse to take Medicaid. We must revisit and overhaul the system.
• Secondly, We must provide better job opportunities through better workforce development.
• Finally, education is no longer a priority in the state of Iowa. Schools need to be fully funded.
Do you believe the state should increase the minimum wage? If yes, to what level?
The stagnation of Iowa’s minimum wage has led to financial difficulties for many Iowans. The majority of minimum-wage workers are not teenagers. Seventy-seven percent are over the age of 20. Fifty-eight percent of minimum wage workers are women. More than 40 percent of Iowa’s kids are eligible for free and reduced lunch. I would like to see the minimum wage raised.
Would you vote to roll back the state income tax cuts passed last session? Would you expand them?
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I support middle-class families over out of state corporations. It’s important that the state supports issues that matter to all of us, like jobs with good wages, health care and public education rather than tax breaks to out-of-state corporations.
Would you vote to end or phase out the property tax “backfill” for local governments?
I would not be in favor of end to or phase out of the property tax “backfill” to local governments. This is a promise we need to keep to provide revenue to offset the tax breaks given to businesses.
Would you vote to ban automated traffic cameras/enforcement devices? If no, would you favor bringing them under state regulation?
If traffic camera placement contributes to the personal safety of Iowans, I am in favor of keeping them. A bipartisan effort to get citizen input for placement and strict regulations on them are needed. I am not in favor of them for a cash grab by local communities.
Would you vote to expand Iowa’s current medical cannabis law? Legalize marijuana?
Iowa’s current law on medical cannabis isn’t working. Expand the law to manufacture non-intoxicating cannabis oil for those who suffer from debilitating diseases and other medical conditions, like terminal cancers, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. The THC level should be raised to make it more effective. These decisions should be made with the input of medical professionals.
I also believe that marijuana should be decriminalized.
Should Iowa amend the state Constitution to protect the right to bear arms beyond current language? Would you support a “constitutional carry” change to Iowa’s firearm permit system that would significantly expand gun rights?
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I support adding the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to the Iowa Constitution. The current language passed in 2018 is not the same as that in the U.S. Constitution.
Would you support giving counties local control to regulate livestock facilities? Would you favor a moratorium on new large CAFO construction?
Linn County uses the Master Matrix when it considers CAFOs. It is unfortunate that communities’ and counties’ interests and concerns account for so little in the permitting process for hog confinements.
I am in favor of giving counties local control to regulate livestock facilities to protect the environment, property values and quality of life.
What are your thoughts on increasing funding for public education? Would you vote to extend 1-cent SAVE sales tax for school infrastructure until 2049?
I would vote for the extension of the 1-cent SAVE tax until 2050 for school infrastructure. HF2481 would have provided $14.4 million in property tax relief, a $4.6 million increase. We also need to fully fund our schools so, at the very least, we can keep up with the rate of inflation. I would like to see the rate at 4 percent so we can begin to catch up from the underfunding of the past.
Would you expand or repeal Iowa’s law barring doctors from performing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected?
I would repeal Iowa’s law barring doctors from performing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. This law places an undue burden on women who should have control over their reproductive rights.