DES MOINES — A western Iowa legislator cast his final vote in the Iowa House, then announced late last night that he was leaving for basic training for the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Jon Jacobsen of Council Bluffs said members of the group are unpaid volunteers.

“An enormous amount during my youth was involved in endurance swimming and aquatics lifesaving BSA activities. I was a proverbial fish who was always happiest on water,” Jacobsen said during a speech last night on the House floor.

Jacobsen, who is 62, told his colleagues that for the past eight months he’s been getting fit and losing weight in order to qualify for basic training. He’s joining about 21,000 other Americans who are volunteers in the Coast Guard Auxiliary. Jacobsen said it will give him a new perspective on protecting Iowa’s waterways and flood prevention.

“Instead of serving my constituents in the House, I will be serving them on the Missouri and the Nishnabotna,” Jacobsen said.

Jacobsen is not seeking reelection to the House, but is considering a run for the state senate in 2024. Jacobsen is an attorney and a trust officer in a bank.