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Posted September 22, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Ending special tax privileges could save families thousands

DES MOINES, Iowa — Jeremy Horpedahl knows most people find the tax code to be complicated, boring and hard to understand. He also knows the tax code is so complicated [...]

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Posted September 12, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Feds have no idea the extent of SNAP fraud, says Iowa official

DES MOINES, Iowa — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is sure the U.S. Department of Agriculture is doing a great job fighting fraud committed by people receiving benefits in the [...]

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Posted September 12, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Politics let student-visa abusers go unchecked

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Responding to’s report that the U.S. has lost track of 58,000 foreign students holding expired visas, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley proposed legislation to tighten security. But, once again, [...]

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Posted September 08, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Audit finds $355,000 in improper billing in Iowa public defender office

DES MOINES, Iowa — If all the claims for payment Jennifer Meyer submitted while working for the Office of the State Public Defender are accurate, then she’s the hardest working [...]

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Posted September 02, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

‘It’s not fraud if the agency does it:’ Iowa officials explain unemployment overpayments

DES MOINES, Iowa — The only reason Iowa Workforce Development hasn’t been telling the truth about the extra unemployment benefits it paid out in March is because it believes in [...]

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Posted August 22, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Iowa agency issues extra unemployment checks; tries to keep it quiet

DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowa Workforce Development may have trouble managing money, but at least its management understands the importance of politeness. In early March, the agency, which oversees unemployment claims [...]

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Posted August 20, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Drunk teacher wins unemployment benefits; gets to keep license

DES MOINES, Iowa — If Dennis Pagel had taken a box of school supplies while working as a teacher at Dallas-Center Grimes Middle School, he could have gotten in serious trouble. [...]

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Posted August 15, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

850 days of ‘the grossest incompetence:’ How the IRS botched a case of identity theft

INDIANOLA, Iowa — Jason Dinesen smiled politely and shook his head when asked about a new bill in the U.S. Senate that aims to improve how the IRS handles cases [...]

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Posted August 13, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

Give me shelter: Josue and other border kids go to court

OMAHA, Neb. — In an office building near Omaha’s airport, stern-faced, gray-haired Immigration Judge Jack Anderson presides over removal hearings Tuesday in a courtroom filled with juveniles, most of them from [...]

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Posted August 12, 2014in Iowa Watchdog

In Iowa, stay away from stopping school buses or temporarily lose your license

DES MOINES, Iowa — Kayden’s Law seemed like a “no-brainer” when it was passed in 2012. Named for a 7-year-old girl who was killed in 2011 by a speeding motorist, [...]

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