Exclusive: Bonuses push five Iowa agency heads above maximum pay

Governor Kim Reynolds has approved bonuses for at least five current state agency directors, allowing them to receive substantially more compensation than the top of the pay scale Iowa law sets for their positions.

The Iowa Department of Administrative Services disclosed information about four agency leaders now receiving such bonuses in response to Bleeding Heartland’s public records request. The Cedar Rapids Gazette’s Erin Jordan was first to report on Homeland Security and Emergency Management Director Paul Trombino’s bonus, in an article published April 7.

This post discusses each official’s bonus pay in the order that they were awarded. The governor’s spokesperson Pat Garrett did not respond to an April 7 email seeking to clarify whether any other heads of state departments are receiving greater compensation than the statutory maximum for their positions.

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Time to bid goodbye to Terry Branstad, Chuck Grassley

Herb Strentz: After a combined nine decades in elected offices, Iowa’s longtime senator and former governor are increasingly a liability to democracy. -promoted by Laura Belin

U.S. Senator Charles Grassley and former Governor Terry Branstad have served in elected offices for a combined 94 years. It really is time for Iowans to bid goodbye to them. The two have more than paid their public-service dues, but sadly are increasingly a drain on public confidence and a liability to democracy. The evidence of the latter includes their unconscionable silence when it comes to holding former President Donald Trump accountable and their implicit support of him.

Both Grassley, 87, and Branstad, 74, were around when the Iowa legislature merited praise. Now they insist on sticking around when the Republican Party needs new people to lead it back to being concerned about the fate of our state and nation instead of soothing Trump’s ego, downplaying his temper tantrums and thousands of lies, and catering to a lunatic fringe to help assure re-election.

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Governor names Michael Bousselot to lead Iowa's budget agency

Governor Kim Reynolds announced on February 1 that she had selected Michael Bousselot to serve as director of the Iowa Department of Management, effective February 8. That agency handles state budget planning as well as disbursements from Iowa’s general fund and various other funds, such as the Coronavirus Relief Fund and other federal money flows related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The appointment means that loyalists who formerly worked in the governor’s office will head Iowa’s budget and homeland security departments, provided that state senators confirm Reynolds’ nominees.

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