At 12:05 PM on Thursday, March 23, the city council declared a 30 minute recess for lunch and set to reconvene the Mayoral hearing at 12:35.
At the break, the prosecution stated they had six witnesses remaining. Witnesses that have testified so far this morning include Police Chief Brett Talkington, Michelle Metzger, city employee Dave Gobin, Civil Service Commissioner Brandy Olsen, retired employee Randy Hill and Finance Director Nancy Lueck.
A large part of the discussion has been regarding the city re-audit which began in August of 2016 and has yet to be concluded. A concern is the money and man-hours being put into the re-audit as well as the billable hours with the city auditing firm, Bohnsack & Frommelt LLP out of Moline. Nancy Lueck stated that the first indication she received of a re-audit was through being contacted by the state. When asked if the mayor has spoken with Lueck about the possibility of a re-audit, Lueck stated she had not been contacted by the mayor about the re-audit.
Another topic they have been focusing on is if the department heads are afraid for their jobs if they speak with the mayor. The department heads who have testified said they are not afraid for their jobs but city code states that for the department heads to discuss city matters with the mayor, that the city administrator must be informed and included in the conversation.
Much of the testimony has focused on the decision of the city to hire retired employee Randy Hill, former Public Works Director, in a temporary capacity through Temp Associates. Mayor Diana Broderson notified IPERS (Iowa Public Employees Retirement Services) of a situation based on a possible conflict of interest as Hill was drawing IPERS retirement while also collecting a paycheck from the city.
Mayor Broderson’s attorney, William J. Sueppel of Meardon, Sueppel & Downer P.L.C., stated that no matter the outcome of today’s hearing, he plans to take the matter before District Court to be reviewed.