Mike Gronstal, from Council Bluffs, has been the Senate Democratic Leader since 1997. First elected to office in 1982, Gronstal served one term in the Iowa House (1983-85), and is currently in his seventh term in the Senate. He is the State Democratic Leader in the Iowa Senate and has been a lifelong advocate for public education and smart politics.


We are fortunate to have Mike Gronstal represent us, our students, our schools and our profession. In the current political climate it is vital that you understand that we need YOU. Your time, your talent, and--eventually--your treasure will be needed to make sure that we reverse the trend of legislators who are willing to sell out our children for corporate tax cuts.

Keeping college and career training affordable for Iowans

A skilled and educated workforce is key to rebuilding a strong economy. That’s why we keep investing in the college and job training programs that are helping make Iowa’s economic outlook brighter than other states.

To make job training and a college education a real opportunity for more Iowans, I’ve worked to ensure that higher education remains affordable. For example, this year the Legislature provided $24 million specifically to help prevent increases in tuition, student fees and charges at our state universities.

We’re also helping community colleges prepare Iowa students for good jobs. Our community colleges provide an affordable, high-quality education to tens of thousands of Iowans each year. They are the pathway to a better life for many families, helping to build the skilled workforce needed to fill high-wage jobs and attract top-notch businesses to Iowa.

During the 2010 session, we once again provided strong financial support for our community colleges and their programs. This includes:

** $5.5 million for Accelerated Career Education (ACE), which allows community colleges to partner with local businesses to provide vocational programs and accelerated training for employees.

** $2.4 million for Vocational-Technical Tuition Grants for community college students training for technical careers necessary for Iowa’s economic development.

** $2.4 million for the All Iowa Opportunity Scholarship, which provides $2,500 grants for eligible first-year community college students.

** $2 million for major renovations and repairs, including health, life and fire safety needs, and for compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act.

** An increase of $825,000 for faculty salaries.


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