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State Sen. Brown announces resignation from Legislature

By Bob Steenson,

State Sen. Waylon Brown, who represents part of Floyd County, has announced he is resigning from the Iowa Legislature effective Wednesday, July 10.

State Sen. Brown announces resignation from Legislature
Sen. Waylon Brown (R-Osage)

Brown, from Osage, had just won the primary election June 4 as the Republican Party’s nominee to seek re-election in Iowa Senate District 30, which includes the northeast Rock Grove and Rockford townships in Floyd County.

He did not give a reason for his decision, but commented on accomplishments he said he had been a part of in the Legislature, as well as thanking supporters.

Brown had defeated challenger Doug Campbell of Mason City in the June 4 Republican primary, by a 52.8% to 47.2% margin across District 30, which includes parts of Floyd, Mitchell, Worth and Cerro Gordo counties.

Before the 2022 Census-derived reapportionment, Brown had represented all of Floyd County as the two-term senator for then-District 26.

“I will forever be grateful to the people of my district who entrusted me to represent them in the Iowa State Capitol,” Brown said in his statement announcing his resignation. “I’m thankful for my wife, Julie, and our two kids, who have supported me throughout my tenure as state senator.”

The Republican Party of Cerro Gordo County announced that the party would hold a nominating convention within the next 30 days to select a new candidate for the Republican nomination for Senate District 30. Republican representatives of the counties that are part of District 30 will attend the convention.

Primary election opponent Campbell announced Tuesday that he will seek the nomination at the convention.

State Sen. Brown announces resignation from Legislature

Brown was first elected to the Legislature in 2016, defeating Democratic incumbent Mary Jo Wilhelm in what was then District 26.

He won reelection in 2020 and normally would have not had to run again until 2024, but because of reapportionment, and because Democratic Sen. Amanda Ragan who was living in what would become District 30 declined to officially file that she was not running for reelection, he had to run in 2022, two years early, as well as again this year in the regular Senate cycle.

Brown is the majority whip for the Republican majority Senate, and is chair of the Senate Commerce Committee.

He has been the object of some disapproval by opponents of carbon dioxide pipeline proposals, because legislation that passed in the Iowa House that would limit the use of eminent domain or make judicial challenges easier has been blocked in the Senate, including in Brown’s Commerce Committee.

In his resignation statement, Brown said, “When I took office I said I wanted to leave things better than I found them, and I believe I accomplished that. In the past seven years, we have enacted responsible budgeting, including the elimination of the inheritance tax and taxes on retired income.

“We said goodbye to needless red tape and are getting Iowans into the workforce faster because of licensing reform. As chair of the Commerce Committee, I oversaw significant energy policies, making Iowa more competitive and increasing the stability of our electrical grid,” he said.

“Our rural and agricultural communities are stronger than they were seven years ago. This is critical – since ag and rural industries are the lifeblood of Iowa,” Brown said.

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