UPDATE: Gov. Kim Reynold's office initially said in a press release she would halt the collection of property taxes as part of the proclamation, but corrected that to say only the collection of penalties and interest for property taxes would be suspended.
Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an additional emergency proclamation that temporarily relaxes or suspends certain regulations in Iowa amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The declaration temporarily suspended the collection of property tax penalties and interests, evictions in certain circumstances, extended expiration deadlines for permits to acquire firearms, permitted the sale of carry-out, delivery or drive-through alcohol for unopened bottles for bars and restaurants and suspended some fees pertaining to that.
The proclamation also permits public meetings or hearings by electronic means to “improve the functions of government while maintaining or social distancing practices.”
The governor suspended regulatory provisions of Iowa Code that allow for the termination of a rental agreement by a landlord and the eviction of a tenant.
“This suspension does not apply to actions for forcible entry and detainer where the defendant has by force, intimidation, fraud, or stealth entered upon the prior actual possession of another in real property and detains the same, or any other emergency circumstances allowed by law,” according to the declaration. “Suspension of these provisions shall apply during the duration of this Proclamation or any future extension of this suspension.”
The proclamation is set to expire at 11:59 p.m. on April 16 unless extended or terminated by the governor in writing before then.
Reynolds temporarily suspended regulatory provisions of Iowa Code prohibiting class C liquor license holders from selling unopened bottles of wine or liquor for consumption off premises.
“Beverages may be sold if promptly taken from the premises, such as on a carry-out or drive-through basis, or if the beverage is delivered to customers off the premises,” according to the declaration.
Suspension of this provision is effective immediately and will continue until 11:59 p.m. on March 31.
Provisions of Iowa Code “or any other statute imposing a requirement to hold a public meeting or hearing, to the extent that the statutes could be interpreted to prevent a governmental body from holding the meeting by electronic means, provided that the governmental body properly notices the meeting or hearing and includes a telephone conference number or website address that permits the public to participate in the meeting or hearing” was also suspended by the governor’s proclamation.
“[The governor] also temporarily suspend[ed] those statutes to the extent they could be interpreted to prevent a governmental body from limiting the number of people present at an in-person location of the meeting, provided that the governmental body provides a means for the public to participate by telephone or electronically as provided in this section,” according to the declaration.
The governor is scheduled to speak at a press conference at 2 p.m. on March 20.