For the last three years, Senate Republicans crafted policies to create a better job climate in Iowa. These policies to grow our state and make it the best in the nation yielded the results we desired.

US News and World Report named Iowa its best state in the nation. Iowa boasts the lowest unemployment rate in the country. Those long discussions and well-thought out plans resulted in going from a state asking “where are the jobs” to our job creators asking “where are the workers?”

Our policies are working as intended, but we cannot rest on our laurels. It is imperative we continue to strengthen our economy as well as look for ways to grow our workforce. Given the lowest unemployment rate in the nation, growing our workforce relies on people moving to Iowa. However, just as important, we also must increase our workforce from within the state and among our fellow Iowans. 
Career opportunities are endless. Iowa businesses that drive our economy are constantly looking to fill positions across the state – and sometimes not with the success as they hoped. Various sectors that drive Iowa’s economy are constantly looking to fill positions across the state – and sometimes not with the success as they hoped. It is important we implement welfare to work reforms to bring more people into our workforce.

Last week in the Iowa Senate, we passed a bill directing the Iowa Department of Human Services to request a waiver from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to develop a community engagement requirement in the Medicaid program. This bill is aimed at bringing more people into the workforce. 

Iowa would become the sixth state to pass the Medicaid work requirement waiver, if it passes the House and is signed by the Governor. This legislation directs able-bodied adults not caring for a dependent to be required to work, volunteer, or go to school. It is common-sense policy that can improve their lives as well as help our state grow. 
The reforms we passed over the last three years go a long way from making Iowa a flyover state to a destination where people desire to relocate or start a new business, raise a family and receive a world class education. We will continue to move our state in the right direction as is in the case of the Medicaid work requirements. Moving people off our welfare programs and into the workforce will change their lives, their kids’ lives and the entire trajectory of their family.

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