Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

April 3, 2014

Secret settlements?

By Michael Schaffer Managing Editor
The Daily Iowegian

---- — The Daily Iowegian will publish an Editorial Question of the Week on the Opinion page.

The Iowegian wants readers to think about the Des Moines Register’s recent reporting that state agencies were paying secret settlements for fired workers. “More than 320 state workers have entered settlement agreements since 2011, and more than two dozen were asked to sign confidentiality agreements. The total paid exceeded $500,000,” according to the Des Moines Register.

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad said he first learned about the practice when the Des Moines Register reported on it last month.

The Register reports Branstad “signed an executive order … prohibiting future confidential settlement agreements.” He said “previous administrations also have signed confidentiality agreements.”

Now some lawmakers are questioning the legality of the practice.

So, the question of the week is, “Is something illegal going on with the settlement agreements?”

Go to the Daily Iowegian website, www.dailyiowegian.com, and scroll down the home page to POLL on the right hand side and cast your vote. Or call the Iowegian office at (641) 856-6336 or email the editor at iowegianeditor@mchsi.com to cast a vote.

Vote on the Question of the Week up until Wednesday, April 9 at 12 p.m. The results will be published in the Thursday, April 10 paper along with a new question.

Here are the results from the last poll question: “Are you in favor of the proposed 3 percent franchise fee Centerville is considering?”

A. Yes received 25 votes.

B. No received 98 votes.

C. Not sure received six votes.