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    The Government Oversight Committee has had a very busy year so I wanted to update everyone on our work. This session is my fourth as Chair of the Committee. I have been very passionate about … more
For the past 15 years or so, the communities of Wilton and Durant have known me as Derek Sawvell. For some of the older generations, I’m known as Stan and Tami Sawvell’s son. To the rest, I’m … more
    The 2018 session of the Iowa Legislature is scheduled to end on April 17. Unfortunately, legislators have yet to see a budget proposal for next year, and House and Senate leaders continue to … more
We receive dozens of press releases each week at the Advocate News. Thousands per year that reach the pages of our hometown newspaper, and hundreds of thousands more that do not.     Prior to … more
    I was saddened to learn recently that West Liberty Raceway at the Muscatine County Fairgrounds may not host races this season. I have been a racing fan since I was a kid, and West Liberty … more
    Iowa’s state universities have been cut nearly $50 million in the past 12 months, a reduction of almost 10 percent in just one year. Funding for our state universities is now lower than it … more
    In Des Moines we are working toward wrapping up the session. Two major items remain – the budget and taxes. This week I want to write a little about the budget process and what the proposed … more
With the birth of our new website in 2016, I was asked a few times about the newspaper, more specifically, if we are “getting rid of the paper” or “Will we still have the … more
    Many Iowa students take on a lot of debt for a college education. Iowa ranks ninth among states most affected by student debt, according to WalletHub. That’s why it makes no sense to further … more
    We are down to the last few weeks at the Capitol. Budgets are being rolled out and tax policy is being debated. In the coming weeks I will write about the budget targets and my spending … more
As you’ve seen from our page 1 story this week, and our page 1 story from March 15, the No. 1 question circulating through Wilton lately has been simply “Fence or no fence?” as the city … more
School Safety: The Iowa Legislature has either passed or is on the verge of passing six bills that deal with school safety. Keeping our kids safe is our highest priority. I think you will see this … more
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