Governor Branstad signed into law HF 267, a bill that requires the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) to adhere to, and not exceed, what is required under the National Historic Preservation Act with respect to surveys RECs are asked to conduct and, more generally, the level of effort required of electric cooperatives to identify historic properties. Additionally, this bill provides that the recommendations and decisions of the SHPO are subject to the review and approval of the director of the Department of Cultural Affairs.
HF 267 is intended to ensure that member-consumers can count on the safe, reliable delivery of electricity following a natural disaster. HF 267 will also reduce costly government restrictions on construction by making Iowa law no more restrictive than federal law. Prior to the passage of HF 267 SHPO’s recommendations, in many instances, exceeded the intent of the federal law thereby resulting in costly delays on storm recovery projects.
The legislation had strong-bipartisan support throughout the legislative process and was one of the first five bills signed by Governor Terry Branstad in the 2011 legislative session.