By Alex Schuman
The Iowa State Patrol asked lawmakers for more money to pay for more troopers late last month.
One lawmaker is following this issue closely because, for her, both your safety and the safety of the troopers, is personal.
Rep. Mary Gaskill's, D-Ottumwa, husband Jim served as a state trooper for 27 years.
When he applied for his job, Gaskill told the State Patrol in part of the interview process her husband could handle protecting himself. But she says that doesn't mean he or any other state trooper is necessarily safe when their out on the road alone.
"They got their radio and they got their gun with them, but they're walking up to a person in a car that they have no idea what that person is," Gaskill said. "What the intentions of that person are."
The Iowa State Troopers Association reports the low number of troopers keeps them far apart and it's harder to support each other.
Trooper numbers have dropped by almost a hundred since the year 2000.
For Gaskill, this cause goes back to a night when her husband did not come home for eight hours after his shift until she found him at the hospital.
"A motorcycle had tried to run him down," she said.
A study by Northwestern University discovered the State Patrol needs to add 87 more officers, which would cost $149,000 per trooper to the state.
Gaskill says other safety issues like funding new prisons may mean the troopers will not get as much support as they ask for.
"It's quite a bit of money, and I'm hoping we get some in there at least," Gaskill said.