The Ottumwa Courier

AP Iowa

May 14, 2014

Iowa universities identify disqualified ex-workers

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Nearly 100 former University of Iowa employees are disqualified from returning to work because of previous firings, but only a handful of ex-workers at the state's two other public universities face similar restrictions, according to records released Tuesday.

Spreadsheets released by the Iowa Board of Regents show that the universities have fewer disqualified former workers than Iowa's executive branch, which last month released a list of 975 individuals with that status but acknowledged Tuesday the document was deeply flawed.

The records raise new questions about the state's practice of barring some former workers, which has created a headache for Gov. Terry Branstad's administration. They show that each university has a different way of tracking and excluding fired workers and that those methods are different than state agencies' procedures, adding to critics' claims that there is no consistency for how those decisions are carried out.

The University of Northern Iowa, for instance, says it identified no former workers who have been disqualified from re-employment since 2005. Iowa State University named only six terminated employees who are ineligible to return to work.

No academic staff or faculty members, even those who have been fired for misconduct, were named in the documents released to The Associated Press. University of Iowa spokesman Joseph Brennan said that their firings are tracked separately from a centralized database of nonacademic employees, and that departments would be expected to check references and personnel files when deciding on whether to rehire them.

Brennan said the university makes a recommendation not to rehire individuals in their personnel files when they are dismissed for cause.

"It's done for really good management reasons, and it's consistent and appropriate under the law," he said.

Then-Department of Administrative Services Director Michael Carroll told lawmakers last month that his agency didn't keep a list of disqualified former workers. Days later, his department released a spreadsheet showing that 975 employees had been disqualified due to firings and resignations dating to 1990. Democratic lawmakers said they were misled. Union leaders accused the governor of keeping a secret blacklist. Some workers — including a few currently employed by the state — complained that they were erroneously listed.

Text Only
AP Iowa
  • Iowa police investigate gunfire at pedestrian mall IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa City police say they have arrested a juvenile who was shooting a weapon into the air and are searching for another. Police say several shots were fired Sunday morning at the pedestrian mall downtown. Witnesses tell police

    July 28, 2014

  • Tornado-stricken Nebraska town gets some Iowa help SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — The Sioux City school district is donating excess desks, tables and shelving units to help out some northeast Nebraska students whose middle school in Pilger (PIHL'-gur) was heavily damaged by a tornado. The Sioux City Journal

    July 28, 2014

  • People rescued after boat overturns near Dubuque DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — At least a half-dozen people have been rescued after their boat overturned on the Mississippi River near Dubuque. Nate Johnson with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources says the incident occurred Saturday. At least three othe

    July 28, 2014

  • One person killed, several injured in Iowa collision WASHINGTON, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say one person has been killed and several others injured in a collision between a car and pickup in eastern Iowa. Iowa State Patrol and Washington County sheriff's officers responded to the crash around 4:30 p.m.

    July 28, 2014

  • Former Iowa inmate convicted in killing dies DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa inmate who was sentenced to life in prison has died less than a year being granted compassionate release because she was dying. Friends and family members told The Des Moines Register ( ) t

    July 28, 2014

  • Southeast Iowa's Lake Darling State Park reopens BRIGHTON, Iowa (AP) — Lake Darling State Park has reopened after around six years of restoration work in southeast Iowa's Washington County. The $16 million project began in 2008 and included draining the 300-acre lake and replacing a dam. The park n

    July 25, 2014

  • University of Iowa bans restroom videos suspect IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — University of Iowa police have identified a university employee as the person suspected of placing a video camera on the floor of a restroom and recording scenes there. The camera was found June 4 in the University Capitol Cent

    July 25, 2014

  • Iowa panel sued for rejecting Cedar Rapids casino CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Former Linn County Attorney Eugene Kopecky has sued the Iowa Racing Gaming Commission over its rejection of the proposed Cedar Rapids casino. Kopecky says he wants a court to force the commission to reconsider its decision a

    July 25, 2014

  • Manure odor biofilters topic of Iowa conference AMES, Iowa (AP) — The latest technology designed to reduce the odor from hog manure will be the focus of a conference next month at Iowa State University. The Biofilter Conference on Aug. 20 is aimed at producers and managers of animal feeding operat

    July 25, 2014

  • Northwest Iowa man dies in hay bale accident WESTFIELD, Iowa (AP) — A northwest Iowa man has died after being hit with a hay bale. The Le Mars Daily Sentinel reports ( ) 76-year-old Barry E. Knapp, of Westfield, died Tuesday while stacking hay bales. The Plymouth County She

    July 24, 2014

AP National