Lee Hein (R), Iowa House District 96

     Personal history: I graduated from Monticello Community Schools and attended Iowa State. I came home to be a part of our family farming operation. I am a member of the Pork and Beef Producers, Iowa Corn Growers, and the Iowa Soybean Producers. I served on the Monticello School Board for nine years and was board president for five of those years.

     Family: I have been married to my wife, Jacky, for 37 years. My daughter Amy and her husband Nathan, along with our grandchildren Caroline and Henry, live in the Charlotte, N.C. area. My son Ben and his wife Whitney, along with their daughter Lainey, live on the family farm and are the fourth generation to live in the farm house.

     1. Why are you seeking the office of State Representative? I currently am the chair of the Ways and Means Committee. I also serve on the Legislative Council and Agriculture Committees. I believe serving on those committees I can make a difference for the constituents of House District 96.

     Serving House District 96 has been an honor and experience that I will cherish the rest of my life. I wish to continue to be a strong voice for the district and continue to address the priorities that they have identified to me.

     2. What are some significant issues you anticipate in the upcoming legislative term? The budget is always on the top of the list of importance. Continuing to spend less than we collect in revenue while prioritizing the needs of Iowans. Recently it was announced that we ended FY20 with a $305 million surplus and full reserve accounts. This is due to the responsible budgeting practices that we have insisted on and implemented over the last decade. It has allowed us to keep our promises to K-12 schools each year.

     Childcare needs to be addressed. Finding ways to increase daycare openings and lower the cost are crucial to young families.

     I have worked on and will continue to work towards finding funding for rural EMS. This seems to be a growing problem that needs to be addressed. In some areas it can take over an hour for EMS to respond to a call. When minutes count, this is unacceptable.

     3. How does your experience/background prepare you to be an effective State Representative? My personal life experiences are a big asset to my work at the Capitol. I have been part of a family farming business for as long as I can remember. The nine years that I served on the Monticello School Board gave me insight into the challenges that our schools face. I am active in the communities that make up District 96. Lastly, serving as the State Representative for the constituents of Jones and Delaware counties, I can hit the ground running. I have the knowledge and the relationships to be an effective legislator in Des Moines and here in the district. These things, along with being a good listener for the constituents of the district, have prepared me to be what I hope is an effective state representative.

     4. What are your priorities in balancing a state budget? The top budget priority should be to prioritize the needs of Iowans and develop a spending plan that fits within these budgeting principles:

     • Spend less than the state collects

     • Refrain from using one-time money to fund on-going needs

     • Do not balance the budget by intentionally underfunding programs

     • Return unused tax dollars to Iowa’s taxpayers

     As far as programs that I strongly support and will continue to prioritize, that would include K-12 schools, community colleges and the worker training programs they offer, and public safety.

     5. What are the biggest priorities pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic in Iowa? How would you address those issues? We should continue to protect vulnerable populations and figure out how to safely get people back to work and school.

     As we prepare for the next session, I’m going to be looking for ways to jump start our economy … small businesses and the unemployed are hurting.


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