A bill that would eliminate Iowa’s gender balance requirements for appointive boards and commissions passed out of a subcommittee Wednesday, with two lawmakers – Sens. Jason Schultz and Cherielynn Westrich – voting to advance it and one voting against it, Sen. Pam Jochum. Iowa is the only state to have the requirement at all levels of government. State Sen. Jason Schultz earlier this month introduced SSB 1037, saying such a requirement is no longer necessary due to the advances made by women in the professional sphere. He also said he’s heard from those who are responsible for finding people to fill boards who say, “The idea that we would have a quota system in Iowa just seems shortsighted, the wrong direction, and looking for the best, most qualified people is a better way.” Fewer than two-thirds of boards and commissions at the city and county levels are gender-balanced. Almost all lobbyists and members of the public at the meeting spoke out in opposition of the bill, saying there is a need for diverse representation and getting rid of this law would be “a huge step backward.” No one spoke in favor of the bill. The bill now moves to a full vote in the Senate State Government Committee.