April 2, 2012

State may distribute far fewer free paper maps this year

The Iowa House has voted to save about $130,000 by dramatically reducing the number of Iowa maps the state buys and hands out for free.

House Republicans who’ve been looking for ways to cut the state budget argue most people are using electronic maps these days, reducing demand for paper maps of the State of Iowa. Using a smartphone or GPS device, you just type in your address and your destination. A map pops up on the screen. Some provide directions from an electronic voice.
House Reppublicans have voted to set aside just $80,000 in the Iowa Department of Transportation’s budget for printing paper maps next year. Officials estimate fewer than 400,000 maps would be printed this year compared to the 1.4 million Iowa maps that were printed in 2011. Senator Matt McCoy, a Democrat from Des Moines who leads the senate panel that drafts the DOT’s bugdet, says he’s willing to go along.

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