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Old Yesterday, 12:26 AM   #1
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Default New dnr director -


Kayla Lyon, a state agriculture and natural resources policy adviser, will become the first female leader of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Wednesday.

Lyon will replace Bruce Trautman, who had been acting director since May 1, 2018, when Chuck Gipp retired.

“As my legislative liaison and lead policy adviser on agriculture and natural resources, Kayla oversaw DNR operations including regulatory permitting, conservation efforts, and wildlife issues,” Reynolds said in a statement. “She also played an instrumental role in the 2018 comprehensive water quality funding bill. As DNR Director, Kayla will serve a key role in helping our state continue to grow.”

Lyon, who lives in Ames, will start July 8. Her appointment must be confirmed by the Iowa Senate when it convenes next year.

Her salary was not announced. In her current role, Lyon was paid about $70,000 in fiscal 2018, records show. In comparison, Trautman was paid over $148,000. [In my opinion … over paid!]

Before joining the governor’s staff in January 2017, Lyon spent her career in government affairs working on agriculture, renewable fuels, water quality and environmental policy while representing farmers and agribusiness, according to a news release.

She served as director of government affairs for the Iowa Institute for Cooperatives, an Ames-based organization that represents industries including agriculture, credit unions (e.g., Farm Credit Services), rural utilities, farm credit and petroleum. She was registered as a state lobbyist for the institute as recently as 2016.

In 2013, she went on a 10-day trip to China to explore Iowa’s agricultural trade relationship with China, the Ames Tribune reported.

The Iowa DNR, with nearly 1,400 employees and an operations budget of $134 million last year, is charged with protecting wildlife, enforcing environmental laws and providing outdoor recreation venues for Iowans, among other [part-time] duties.

The agency hasn’t had a permanent director for 14 months, which has caused questions from environmental advocates about a lack of direction for water quality and conservation efforts. The agency also has been slow to fill other key posts, including heads of the Environmental Services Division and Water Quality Bureau.

Jennifer Terry, executive director of the Iowa Environmental Council, said Wednesday she’s glad Reynolds filled the top job and pleased to see a woman get it. [BUT TOTALLY UNQUALIFIED - no practical fish or wildlife background whatsoever!]

“Data show that better decisions are reached when diverse voices are at the table,” Terry wrote in an email.

“Ms. Lyon has the opportunity to improve the quality of life for Iowans, attract and maintain a workforce who can bike the trails and swim in the lakes, and have a positive impact for generations,” Terry said. “She has a unique combination of power and opportunity if she chooses to lead the agency in the appropriate direction.” ["… in the appropriate direction." WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT MEAN? Sounds like "humma-humma-horseshit" to me!]

But Lyon will have a tough job, given reports about contamination in private wells, harmful algal blooms at public lakes and the “explosion of pollution” from large-scale animal feeding operations, Terry said.

She recommends Lyon push for more state funding [she won't] and make sure Iowans’ health and recreation are balanced with agricultural interests.

The Iowa DNR gets about half its operations revenue from the federal government and fees, and also is supported by state restricted funds. But the agency has seen state appropriations from the Legislature decline in recent years, with general fund support going from $15 million in fiscal 2014 to $13.9 million this year. In 2017, the Iowa DNR dissolved its Forestry Bureau and laid off eight employees to address a $1.2 million budget cut. However, the general fund money allocated to Iowa DNR operations will increase $366,000 next year.


When she worked for Iowa Institute for Cooperatives (from their website), here are some policies she created:

21.21 NATURAL RESOURCES AND OUTDOOR TRUST FUND (2016) WHEREAS, the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund was established following passage of a constitutional amendment in 2010; and WHEREAS, funding of the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust fund is triggered by a sales tax increase approved by the Iowa Legislature where 3/8 of a cent from the sales tax revenue would be allocated to the Fund; and WHEREAS, the 3/8 of a cent is estimated to generate over $150 million per year; and WHEREAS, Iowa’s cooperative members recognize the importance of providing sustainable funding for soil and water conservation projects; now therefore BE IT RESOLVED, that IIC supports raising the sales tax provided a majority from the 3/8 cent increase be appropriated for additional science-based, voluntary soil/water conservation practices and programs.

[that is not habitat and wildlife ... that is farmers and agriculture! BAD ... Farmers and AG never asked for the 3/8th cent ,,, FHD and a few others did - for wildlife, fish and habitat! Now AG is grabbing most of it!]

WHEREAS, IIC supports federal efforts to improve the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers for the transport of agricultural products and inputs to and from the state; and WHEREAS, the combination of structural reform in the 2014 Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) and 2014 passage of an increase in the barge diesel fuel user fee paid by barge operators into the Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF) to $0.29 per gallon [this is a pittance … Barges are screwing the taxpayer!]; and WHEREAS, the original intent of US Army Corp of Engineers’ flood management planning was flood mitigation; now therefore BE IT RESOLVED, that IIC: • Urges the Army Corps of Engineers to prioritize flood control and commercial river transportation, as it’s written today. • Urges Congress to authorize appropriations for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to carry out navigation and flood management projects in Iowa and around the country. • Supports exploring alternative methods of funding if federal monies are unavailable for the necessary improvement of the lock and dam system.


BE IT RESOLVED, that IIC supports continuation and higher priority for funding placed toward those federal programs that generate the highest impact and return per dollar spent as incentives to encourage soil and water conservation and improved water quality.

I think she is a terrible choice! She is in AG's pocket like Gipp was. She has no education or practical wildlife or fish background that I can see. She is beholden to the governor - iow, a "Yes Woman!" She lives in Ames … probably will work from home - outside of the Wallace Building - one or two days a week. What are her credentials in regional wildlife management and Mississippi Flyway business?

Last edited by stumaas; Yesterday at 12:44 AM.
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Old Yesterday, 06:39 AM   #2
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Default Re: New dnr director -

A hand picked puppet, who is getting a new position handed to her with very little if any qualifications.
We the people who foot the bill loose again.
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Old Yesterday, 12:08 PM   #3
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Default Re: New dnr director -

More than likely hand picked by the Farm Bureau.
The state elections count for nothing as they truly run the state government .
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Old Today, 09:54 AM   #4
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Default Re: New dnr director -

Illinois had the same thing happen this year. A woman, very politically connected-on the democratic central committee, whose only experience is with agriculture. I haven't talked to anyone in the department to see what their opinion is so far.
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