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Noon Newscast 8.2.19

Briar Cliff University faces a lawsuit from a former president of the college.

The Sioux City Journal reports Hamid Shirvani file the suit, alleges fraudulent inducement of contract, but details of the claim are currently sealed because of sensitive information in an employment contract.

Shirvani announced his resignation in July of 2017 after 14 months on the job.

Jerry Foxhoven says he was asked to resign from the Department of Human Services after questioning whether it was legal for the agency to pay part of the salary of one of Governor Kim Reynold’s staff members.

Foxhoven had previously approved the payments for Reynolds’ deputy chief of staff. He says she had been working on Medicaid but when that ended he thought continuing the payments may be illegal.

Reynolds said in a statement that Foxhoven never raised any concerns and never told her staff he was seeking a legal opinion. Foxhoven says that’s not true. He says he told the governor’s chief of staff the week before he was forced out that he was planning to contact the Attorney General’s office.

They knew I was going to be sending an email to the Attorney General’s office on Tuesday. Monday they told me, “Your position is over. Give me your key card and your cell phone and don’t go back to your office.”

Reynolds said in a statement that she would never ask anyone to do something they thought was illegal and that she’s focused on choosing a new DHS director.

Foxhoven is filing a whistleblower claim with the State Appeal Board and says he has spoken with investigators from the State Auditor’s office and federal Department of Health and Human Services.

The Iowa State Board of Education has delayed final action on new rules that would limit districts from using seclusion rooms to discipline students.

Yesterday, the board rejected the proposed changes in a section of the Iowa Code that governs how schools restrain and seclude students.

The board decided to seek more feedback in the fall and reconsider the proposals.

The rooms have come under scrutiny in recent years.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa and Disability Rights Iowa helped draft the proposed rule changes, citing concerns that districts have used the rooms too frequently, particularly with students with disabilities and black students.

Iowa is not doing enough to deter kids from using tobacco, according to a report by the American Cancer Society Action Network.

The annual report ranks how well states are implementing policies to reduce cancer rates.

It gave Iowa low marks in tobacco prevention funding, cigarette tax rates, Medicaid coverage of tobacco cessation and indoor tanning device restrictions.

And, today and tomorrow you can shop for school clothes and shoes in Iowa and not pay sales tax or local option sales tax.

Iowa has held the sales tax holiday for almost 20 years during the first Friday and Saturday in August.

Highway travel has been restored between Interstate 29 and the Missouri River near Percival in southwest Iowa.

The Iowa Transportation Department  says t a contractor laid down temporary pavement in damaged areas of the westbound lanes of Iowa Highway 2.

The two lanes will be divided for now into eastbound and westbound traffic.

The repairs will let vehicles use the bridge that connects Iowa and Nebraska at Nebraska City.

The highway was closed in the middle of March after levees gave way during the flooding.

The area was flooded again in late May, following heavy rains and the upstream water releases by the Army Corps of Engineers.

The temporary fix is expected to continue during reconstruction and further repairs.

Sheila Brummer returns to her radio roots as a Reporter/Special Projects Producer for Siouxland Public Media KWIT-KOJI.