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Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
In the news
AG reports on clergy abuse: Citing “overwhelming” incidents of abuse and an “extensive” cover-up that spanned decades, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller issued a report detailing 50 complaints his office received about allegations of sexual impropriety by Catholic clergy, non-clergy or spiritual leaders — including 17 victims who had not previously come forward to report abuse. The report concluded the Catholic Church in Iowa has had a “long, painful history of abuse by priests and a cover-up by officials” but has taken steps recently to implement reforms and respond to victims. None of the complaints involving Catholic clergy fall within the statute of limitations for criminal prosecution, the report said.
Abortion ruling: A district court judge blocked a law signed by Gov. Kim Reynolds last year that requires a 24-hour waiting period before a woman can get an abortion, marking another setback for attempts by the governor and Republican lawmakers to enact more abortion restrictions.
Split ruling: The Iowa Supreme Court upheld part of Waterloo’s “ban the box” ordinance, which was designed to prohibit employers from considering criminal records early in the hiring process. The high court also struck down portions of the ordinance.
Environmental ruling: A sharply divided Iowa Supreme Court stopped a lawsuit aimed at reducing the flow of fertilizer and hog farm waste into the state’s rivers and streams, finding that limiting pollution from farms was a political matter and not one for the courts.
They said …
“I tell you, that made my day and made my year.”
— Jeno Berta, a retiring Davenport bar owner on the congratulatory letter he received from President Joe Biden
“This rainfall was good, but it’s not enough to be a large-scale drought buster.”
— Justin Glisan, the state climatologist, on last weekend’s rains and Iowa’s drought conditions
Odds and ends
Blue backed: Gov. Kim Reynolds signed into law a bill that boosts support and legal protections for law enforcement as well as increases punishments for people convicted of rioting and makes it easier to charge protesters with crimes.
Garbage warrant: The Iowa Supreme Court ruled Iowa police can no longer sift through someone’s garbage looking for evidence of a crime without a search warrant.
Unemployment up: Iowa’s unemployment rate bumped up to 3.9 percent in May even as more Iowans worked at jobs, a state agency reported. The rate was up slightly from 3.8 percent in April.
Union leader: Danny Homan announced he plans next month to end his 16-year run as president of Iowa’s largest public employee union, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 61.
Child care: Gov. Kim Reynolds announced additional financial support for child care providers, including increased Child Care Assistance rates, stipends to accelerate COVID recovery efforts, and enhancements to programs promoting educational opportunities for providers.
Carbon sequestration: Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an executive order launching a task force to explore carbon sequestration and the opportunities she said it presents for further economic development.
More in the news
Iowa batter hits home run cycle: Mason City Newman Catholic junior baseball player Nash Holmgaard did something that’s never been done before in Iowa high school state baseball history — and has never been done in Major League Baseball history: hit the home run cycle, which is a player hitting a solo home run, a two-run home run, a three-run home run and a grand slam all in the same game. Holmgaard accomplished the feat in just six innings of play. He hit a grand slam in the first inning, a solo shot in the second, a two-run bomb in the third and a three-run homer in the sixth.
Sexploitation charges: A man who has described himself online as a husband, father, teacher, coach and “Follower of Christ” faces five felony charges and up to 30 years in prison for allegedly blackmailing two 16-year-old Muscatine girls for explicit footage between January and April 2020.
Mental health: Iowa’s Department of Education announced it’s committing $20 million of federal pandemic aid toward a new University of Iowa-based “Center for School Mental Health” that will, among other things, offer teacher training and needs assessments statewide.
No contact: A man who pleaded guilty to leaving a menacing voicemail for Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds was ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation and have no contact with the governor for five years. Harvey Hunter Jr., of Stuart, also was fined and granted a one-year term of probation.