The Iowa Public Information Board
COMES NOW, Margaret E. Johnson, Executive Director for the Iowa Public Information Board (IPIB), and enters this Dismissal Order:
On June 22, 2020, LaNelle Kopsieker filed formal complaint 20FC:0062, alleging that the City of Richland (City) violated Iowa Code chapter 21 at a meeting on June 1, 2020.
Ms. Kopsieker alleged that two council members made “multiple humiliating and unjustified allegations” during the open meeting on June 1, 2020. She added that this behavior has occurred repeatedly at meetings since January 2020. Ms. Kopsieker alleged that this behavior resulted from her efforts as city clerk to provide direction to council members on open meetings laws.
She requested that the IPIB require the City to publish a public apology to her in several local newspapers and fine the two council members $2500.00 each.
The City responded to the complaint, stating that the agenda item concerned a complaint about the handling of a sealed bid and was not about an evaluation of the city clerk’s performance.
The facts as presented do not allege a violation of Iowa Code chapter 21. Ms. Kopsieker may want to discuss the matter with legal counsel to determine if she has other remedies.
Iowa Code section 23.8 requires that a complaint be within the IPIB’s jurisdiction, appear legally sufficient, and have merit before the IPIB accepts a complaint. This complaint does not meet those requirements.
IT IS SO ORDERED: Formal complaint 20FC:062 is dismissed as legally insufficient pursuant to Iowa Code section 23.8(2) and Iowa Administrative Rule 497-2.1(2)(b).
Pursuant to Iowa Administrative Rule 497-2.1(3), the IPIB may “delegate acceptance or dismissal of a complaint to the executive director, subject to review by the board.” The IPIB will review this Order on July 16, 2020. Pursuant to IPIB rule 497-2.1(4), the parties will be notified in writing of its decision.
By the IPIB Executive Director
Margaret E. Johnson
1. Ms. Kopsieker provided information to the IPIB in formal complaint 20FC:0048, Wright/City of Richland, that led to the acceptance of that complaint. IPIB staff is currently engaged with the City to negotiate an informal resolution of that complaint.
CERTIFICATE OF MAILING
This document was sent by electronic mail on the ___ day of July, 2020, to:
City of Richland