What to Expect from ABI During the 2021 Legislative Session

January 8, 2021 | Dollars and cents JD Davis, Vice President, Public Policy, ABI, jddavis@iowaabi.org

The legislative session will begin on Jan. 11, 2021. As you have read in this column before, ABI serves as the Iowa business community’s eyes and ears at the Capitol. Except for health and safety accommodations related to the coronavirus, the upcoming legislative session will be no different. It is fitting to once again share with you what to expect from ABI during the session, as well as how you can be engaged in the policymaking process.


  1. Round-the-clock coverage at the Capitol – The ABI public policy team has followed this mantra for the last decade and will continue to do so: “As long as they are there, we are there.” If the Legislature is in session, you can count on the ABI team to provide you information about what’s happening at the Capitol. ABI will be there for Iowa employers day and night. We will work to educate lawmakers about the impact various proposals will have on employees and employers statewide.

  2. Weekly updates – Each Thursday afternoon, ABI members will receive the Voice of Iowa Business newsletter. The newsletter will feature a summary of key issues ABI has engaged in on behalf of members during the week. The newsletter will be timely and in your email inbox before the end of the week.

  3. Twice-monthly conference calls – ABI members also get up-to-date information on twice-monthly conference calls, which are made possible by ABI member company support of the organization. These calls give specific information on bill status and provide members with an insiders’ look into the legislative process. The calls begin Friday, Jan. 29, 2021. Go to the Events Calendar page on the ABI website to register.


1. Meet your local elected officials – Iowa legislators remain accessible and some will continue weekend forums. Many legislators are willing to come to businesses and meet with employees and other businesspeople from their districts while practicing good coronavirus protocol. All legislators maintain state email accounts and are very interested in feedback from their districts. You can find your legislators here: www.legis.iowa.gov/legislators/find. The best way to educate legislators is to help them understand what you do and why your business is important to the Iowa economy. Invite them to your office, plant or construction site. Get to know them.

2. Attend Iowa Business Day on the Hill – In addition to the ABI Legislative Briefing that kicks off the legislative session, ABI also plans an Iowa Business Day on the Hill. This year, the event is scheduled for March 11, 2021 at the ABI office. Check out www.iowaabi.org for details as the event draws nearer.

3. Make sure you receive ABI emails – I know you receive a lot of emails from organizations you’re a part of. However, if you want to stay up-to-date on the legislative happenings at ABI, make sure you read the Voice of Iowa Business newsletter on Thursdays. Also, when an email comes from Mike Ralston, Brad Hartkopf or myself, know it’s related to a pending public policy issue and that we need your insight and support. Please help us and reach out to your legislators when requests come from ABI.

We are honored to represent you and the hundreds of thousands of employees you employ throughout the state each and every day. You can expect us to work hard every day for you and for a better climate to be an Iowa employer. If you have a question about public policy, please email or call us. Our job is to represent you and be responsive to your questions and concerns. Thank you for your commitment to ABI and Iowa’s business community!