Governor Reynolds Says She’s Open To The Idea Of Repealing Gender Balance Requirement

Des Moines, Iowa — Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds says she is open to repealing the requirement that state and local officials ensure there’s an equal balance of men and women appointed to boards and commissions.

A bill to repeal that gender balance requirement is eligible for debate in the Senate State Government Committee. Reynolds says she’s not committing to sign the bill into law, but the concept is something she supports.

Gender balance has been required on all boards and commissions in state government since 1987. In 2009, the legislature passed a law to require gender balance on city and county boards and commissions established by state law.

Reynolds says it has become increasingly hard in rural Iowa to find people to serve on local boards and commissions and this added requirement makes even it tougher. Iowa governors are responsible for appointing the members of all boards and commissions in state government. Reynolds says her approach to filling those positions isn’t likely to change if the gender balance requirement is lifted.

Reynolds made her comments during an interview with Radio Iowa. Supporters of the gender diversity requirement say the law helps bring women who might be overlooked into leadership roles on boards and commissions. Iowa is among eight states that have a gender equity requirement for government boards. Last summer, a Los Angeles court ruled California’s gender diversity requirement was unconstitutional. The State of California is appealing that ruling.



Local News