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Jury finds Gov. Terry Branstad violated the state’s LGBTQ discrimination laws, awards former employee $1.5 million

Gov. Terry Branstad illegally discriminated against the former Iowa Workers’ Compensation Commissioner Christopher Godfrey when he slashed Godfrey’s salary in 2011 in an attempt to force Godfrey to resign, a Polk County jury decided on Monday. The jury agreed with Godfrey that Branstad had singled him out because Godfrey is gay, and awarded him $1.5 million in damages.

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Transgender Iowans sue over state’s latest attempt to restrict Medicaid funding

On Friday, the ACLU of Iowa filed a lawsuit in state district court on behalf of two transgender Iowans and the LGBTQ rights group One Iowa, that seeks to overturn the state’s ban on the use of Medicaid funds to pay for sex reassignment procedures deemed medically necessary by doctors. […]

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Cedar Rapids will start using its I-380 speed cameras again in June

Cedar Rapids will start using its speed cameras on I-380 to issue tickets again on Saturday, June 1, according to a news release from the city. Although the cameras have never been turned off, they haven’t been used to issue tickets since 2017, due to lawsuits over the automated enforcement system. […]

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ACLU sues to overturn new Iowa ban on funding for Planned Parenthood sex education programs

The ACLU of Iowa filed a lawsuit in state court on Wednesday seeking to overturn sections of the Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) budget bill that were designed to prevent Planned Parenthood from receiving government grants to provide sex education programs. […]

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Iowa Supreme Court rules Cedar Rapids turnover records in police shooting, but sharply limits the public’s right to access other records

On Friday, the Iowa Supreme Court affirmed a lower court’s ruling that the Cedar Rapids Police Department must turn over investigative records to a man suing the city after being shot by a CRPD officer. But as part of their decision, the justices ruled police departments in Iowa

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The BarbouRoskes, plaintiffs in Varnum v. Brien, reflect on Iowa’s fight for marriage equality

The day the Iowa Supreme Court announced they’d made a decision in Varnum v. Brien, the landmark case that would determine whether to legalize same-sex marriage in Iowa, Dawn and Jennifer BarbouRoskes’ two young daughters had covered their faces in temporary tattoos. “Jen’s at work and I’m scrubbing their faces,” Dawn recalled. “Bre had fallen […]

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How a divorce helped kick-start marriage equality in Iowa

The path to marriage equality in Iowa started with a divorce. Kimberly Brown and Jennifer Perez traveled from their home in western Iowa to Vermont in 2002 to be joined in a civil union, a substitute for traditional civic marriages Vermont created for same-sex couples in 2000. […]

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Iowa Supreme Court to decide whether Cedar Rapids must turnover investigator reports in 2016 police shooting

The Iowa Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a Cedar Rapids case that will determine what information the police can withhold from the public. The city of Cedar Rapids and Cedar Rapids Police Officer Lucas Jones are appealing a decision by a Linn County District Court judge that the city must turn over police […]

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Iowa Supreme Court rules in favor of Cedar Rapids’ I-380 speed cameras

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled on Friday that Cedar Rapids’ speed cameras are legal. The decision came in a class action lawsuit that argued the city’s use of speed cameras, and its contracting of a private company that profits from the speeding fines to operate the cameras and issue tickets, violated a driver’s right to due process. […]

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Gov. Reynolds appoints new Iowa Supreme Court judge

On Wednesday, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced the appointment of Judge Susan Christensen of Harlan to the Iowa Supreme Court. In her brief remarks introducing Christensen during a press event Wednesday afternoon, Reynolds presented Christensen as an outsider who will bring to the court a point of view not found in the state’s elite legal circles. […]

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Iowa Supreme Court rules DOT can’t ban traffic cameras

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled on Friday that the Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) does not have the authority to regulate traffic cameras. It was a 6-0 decision in favor of the cities of Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Muscatine, who sued IDOT after the agency ordered automated traffic cameras removed from interstates in Iowa […]

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