Iowa transparency headlines
This article is a list of transparency related news from Iowa.
Iowa Association of School Boards seeks exemption for older records 2011-01-19 16:20:07
IA The Iowa Association of School Boards is considering seeking a judges ruling to exempt documents held and created by the publicly funded non-profit prior to the July 1 passage of legislation which brought the board under the public records law. The board has been involved in a number of investigations, ranging from the FBI, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and the Legislature's Government Oversight Committee. It seeks to exempt not only emails and information created prior to the new law but all new records pertaining to events and decisions made prior to the laws passage. While the attorney general has refused to issue an opinion, the Board hopes to take the matter to court as well as lobbying for a direct legislative exemption for the pre-law records. To read more about Iowa's policy towards publicly funded private entities, and other private groups which may fall under the public records law, please see, Private agency, public dollars-Iowa.
Iowa Association of School Boards Thinks it’s Above State Openness Laws 2010-11-19 20:00:41
The Iowa Association of School Boards (IASB) provides services, education and support to members of Iowa school boards, and is supported by public money in the form of dues collected from school boards. However, the association believes it is not obligated to follow the same rules of openness as state and local governments, even though state lawmakers passed legislation last spring specifically requiring the association to abide by Iowa's open-meetings and open-records laws.
IASB drew the attention of lawmakers after the Des Moines Register's Clark Kauffman reported some of the association's top executives were collecting lavish salaries and expenses at a time when its finances were in disarray as a result of questionable money management.
Iowa budget official predicts surplus 2010-10-29 16:44:49
Iowa Governor Chet Culver's top budget assistant, Dick Oshlo, made an unusual mid-year adjustment to the state budget assessment, projecting that the state would end FY2011 with a larger surplus than his prior projections. The latest estimates of the surplus place it at $914.3 million, up nearly $300 million from the prior projection. The increase was due in part to increased state tax collections. The governor's opponent in the gubernatorial race questioned the timing of the announcement.
Iowa Governor's office requires $744 before even considering releasing email records 2010-07-26 14:49:43
Des Moines, IA This past week the Iowa Governor Chet Culver responded to a request for emails sent by the Department on Aging by requiring an up front payment of $744 before they even considered whether or not to release the records. The fees come from the governors policy to charge hourly fees up front to determine if the records in question are exempt or subject to the act and in no way guarantees the release of the records. The policy, backed by the Governor and the Attorney General has come under fire from members of the opposite party. 
Cedar Rapids, Iowa school employee charged with embezzlement 2009-08-27 13:21:29
In Iowa, Cedar Rapids police say the 42-year-old May has been charged with first degree theft following an investigation.
May works in business services and is responsible for cash receipts. The district released that the police department made them aware of the possible embezzlement on August 18th. Subsequently, the district began an internal investigation. May is now on administrative leave pending her termination.
The district contacted the State Auditor's Office, asking them to conduct an independent audit, which could take several months. The missing funds from the embezzlement are covered by insurance.
Confusion over whether marriage license applications are a public record 2009-06-03 13:58:09
Lawyers from the Iowa Attorney General’s office still had not answered the question late today, three days before a high-profile Iowa Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage takes effect."
Pared-down open records bill passes House 2009-06-03 13:56:17
"A watered-down version of a plan to update Iowa’s open records laws was passed by the House today with promises from lawmakers that much more will be done in the future.
“This bill is not going to make everyone happy and it shouldn’t,” said Rep. Vicki Lensing, D-Iowa City, who led debate on the bill. “This is going to be a fluid, continuing process.”
Roughwood resident seeks public records 2009-06-03 13:54:34
"We are going to go back and try and pull up as much information for him as we can," said Johnston City Manager Jim Sanders."
Changes to 'sunshine' law debated 2009-06-03 13:52:03
"Some of the amendments adopted last week pose a retreat from the amount of transparency and openness that currently exists in Iowa. It is just bad public policy," Ombudsman Bill Angrick wrote in a letter to key lawmakers."
Push more public records to Internet 2009-06-03 13:46:51
"As with most everything today, when people want to do business with the government, the place they go is the Internet. They're discovering a mother lode of public information a mere keystroke away.
Government at all levels maintains vast warehouses of information, much of which is migrating from paper to digital form, and increasingly it is publicly available, free for the taking on the Internet." Template:2.default
- ↑ Des Moines Register, "Embattled school boards group may ask judge to rule on disclosing e-mails", 1/19/2011
- ↑ The Des Moines Register "Set an example of transparency" Nov. 19, 2010
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Businessweek "Iowa budget surplus projections increased" Oct. 28, 2010
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 The Quad City Times "Iowa estimate of budget surplus tops $900M" Oct. 28, 2010
- ↑ Des Moines Register, "Cost to consider records request is $744, state says" 5/24/2010
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