DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Latest on Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds’ response to allegations of sexual harassment against a former state agency director (all times local):
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says she’s ordering an independent review of a state agency where a former director was accused of multiple instances of sexual harassment over years.
Reynolds announced Friday afternoon she and the Attorney General’s Office selected a Des Moines attorney to head an investigation into conduct at the Iowa Finance Authority that is linked to alleged abuse by former director Dave Jamison. The attorney, Mark Weinhardt, will also investigate whether other agency staffers may have known of Jamison’s conduct and whether they responded appropriately.
Reynolds’ announcement comes hours after she rejected calls to further investigate problems at the agency. Reynolds fired Jamison last month after two employees complained of harassment to the governor’s office. Reynolds released a complaint Thursday from one of the women alleging Jamison made unwanted sexual advances and comments.
Reynolds says in a statement she’s moving forward with an investigation because one of the victims released details recently of the alleged abuse. But Reynolds had also come under criticism for keeping those details secret for more than a month.
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds is rejecting calls to further investigate problems at an agency where the director allegedly sexually harassed female employees for years.
Reynolds said the culture at the Iowa Finance Authority was “one individual and I fired him,” referring to former director Dave Jamison. The Republican governor acknowledged others were aware of Jamison’s problematic behavior but indicated she had no plans to hold them accountable for failing to report it.
Interim IFA Director Carolann Jensen said Thursday that there are no efforts underway to investigate further.
Reynolds fired Jamison last month after two employees complained of harassment to the governor’s office. Reynolds released a complaint Thursday from one of the women alleging Jamison made unwanted sexual advances and comments.
The woman’s attorney, Paige Fiedler, said a “responsible employer” would typically investigate such complaints to determine the extent of problems. Democratic lawmakers called for an independent investigation.
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