SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Iowa's governor visited Sioux City Friday afternoon to renew a popular funding program used by Iowa school districts to pay for new buildings until 2051.
With just a few strokes of a pen, Governor Kim Reynolds signed House File 546, also known as the SAVE Extension, which extends a school infrastructure tax in Iowa for 30 more years.
"We just needed to find compromise," Governor Reynolds said following the signing. "We needed to find a piece of legislation where both chambers could agree on it, they were able to get it done. It goes until 2051. They were able to get it done and put into place."
During Friday's signing at the Sioux City Career Academy, which was created using funds from the SAVE program, Governor Reynolds was joined by local legislators, leaders from the Sioux City Community School District and students.
"We're here at the Academy and I just think those are tremendous opportunities for students and to be able to use the funding for that, I was really appreciative of that and that was something that I had asked for when they were working on the bill," Governor Reynolds said.
Superintendent, Dr. Paul Gausman said this having this bill signed at the Career Academy was special and he already has big plans for the district utilizing funds from the SAVE Extension.
"As you look at where the governor was sitting today, we had a poster-board of projects that we have done in our community. Nearly $400 Million have been spent since the original local option sales tax, through the statewide sales tax, just here in Sioux City," Dr. Gausman said.
This extension of the penny sales tax for school infrastructure throughout the state is projected to generate more than $26 billion for schools in Iowa over the next 30 years.
"I think it's a good day," Governor Reynolds said. "I think it's the right thing to do and was happy to sign it."
Dr. Gausman says the district has plans to use SAVE funding to replace one more century-old elementary school, before looking at replacing the district's three high schools.
Watch the video on the Siouxland news website.