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 December 20, 2020, Sharon Healey filed a formal complaint against the City of Aplington (City) alleging a violation of Iowa Code chapter 22. She alleged that the City failed to provide records concerning the Aplington Recreational Complex (ARC) within 60 days of her request.
In her complaint, she alleged that on October 8, 2020, she requested financial documents from the City, as well as from other government and nongovernment bodies, belonging to the ARC for the year 2018 and 2020. She also asked for a copy of the corporate organizational documents for the Beaver Meadows Golf Course.
On December 22, 2020, the City clerk responded to the complaint. She noted that she did not respond to the complaint as the City does not handle the finances of the ARC. She explained that the ARC is governed by a board, and that the City just owns the grounds. The City is not the lawful custodian of the requested records and does not have copies of such.
Ms. Healey was advised by IPIB staff that the City does not have access to the records she requested for the ARC. In addition, it appears that the Beaver Meadows Golf Course is a private entity and does not meet the definition of Iowa Code section 22.1(1) definition of a government body.
Although the City does not have access to the requested records, it would have been helpful for the City to communicate this directly to Ms. Healey.
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 fulfill those requirements.
IT IS SO ORDERED: Formal complaint 20FC:0130 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 January 21, 2021. 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, J.D.
1. Iowa Code section 22.1(1) states:. “Government body” means this state, or any county, city, township, school corporation, political subdivision, tax-supported district, nonprofit corporation other than a fair conducting a fair event as provided in chapter 174, whose facilities or indebtedness are supported in whole or in part with property tax revenue and which is licensed to conduct pari-mutuel wagering pursuant to chapter 99D; the governing body of a drainage or levee district as provided in chapter 468, including a board as defined in section 468.3, regardless of how the district is organized; or other entity of this state, or any branch, department, board, bureau, commission, council, committee, official, or officer of any of the foregoing or any employee delegated the responsibility for implementing the requirements of this chapter.
CERTIFICATE OF MAILING
This document was sent by electronic mail on the ___ day of January, 2021, to:
Deb Prier, city clerk for the City of Aplington