Naig, Hill and Lehman all say it was a disappointment not to pass the biofuels legislation, but they said there have been valuable discussions on the matter and they hope it could be passed next year.
“We started this discussion, but didn’t make it,” said Lehman. “It’s really important for us to take this next step.”
Iowa Corn Growers Association president and farmer from Randolph, Iowa Carl Jardon said the group will continue the push as well.
“We’re relentlessly not abandoning the Iowa biofuels standard even though the bill doesn’t hit the ground,” he said.
Another area where there has been movement, but not enough to keep many farmers happy, is water quality. In 2018, lawmakers passed Senate Act 512, which allocated more funding to water quality work over a period of years, but not nearly as much as agriculture and environmental advocates had sought. At that time it was called “beginning”. This year, lawmakers extended SF512 for another 10 years through 2039. That helps, Naig said, as it gives a guarantee that about $ 17 million a year will be allocated to long-term efforts. But the state is still spending a lot less on the problem than farmers or environmentalists say it needs to be.
“There was a frustrating lack of interest (on environmental issues),” said Ingrid Gronstal of the Iowa Environmental Council.