Saving Taxpayers More Than $200,000
Matt Schultz
Secretary of State
State Capitol
Des Moines, IA 50319
Iowa Secretary of State Seal
Chance McElhaney, (515) 725-2942

Saving Taxpayers More Than $200,000

By Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz

The liberals in the media have been attacking me for months, criticizing me for spending money on voter fraud investigations that protect the votes of eligible Iowans from being cancelled out by illegal voters. Now they are attacking me for restructuring my office and saving taxpayers more than $200,000 – something no other statewide elected official is doing.

What the liberals in the media are ignoring as they level their attacks against me, is that the Department of Administrative Services (DAS), the state’s personnel experts, advised my office that instead of severance an agency could keep an employee on payroll longer than they are required to come to the office, so long as the employee was available for phone calls and questions from home. This advice was provided orally and subsequently in writing.

This policy was stated by DAS to my office as I considered the situation of my chief deputy as well as on two previous occasions when my office requested the resignations of two at-will staff members. With the two at-will staff members, we followed the advice of DAS and sent one individual home for 30 days and sent the other individual home for 90 days. Both individuals were required to be available by phone for calls and questions during that time according to advice from DAS.

This policy was also enforced by the collective bargaining agreement of the four union employees who were let go due to restructuring. The agreement required our office to notify them of the layoffs and allow them to go home for 30 days prior to their termination dates.

Although I was given the same option by DAS for my chief deputy, I felt that it was better for him to come into the office a minimum of four days a week to be a resource and if for any reason he was not able to be in the office, he would be available by phone. This allowed our office to have a transition period where he would be available as a resource allowing our office to retain his experience and knowledge. This also gave him the flexibility to help his family and his wife as she was recovering from a serious illness.

This new barrage of attacks by the liberal media is typical of election year politics and exposes their bias. They have continuously attacked me for championing Voter ID and ensuring election integrity. Now they are attacking me for following the standard advice of DAS for isolated personnel decisions.

If the media had real integrity they would be thanking me for protecting Iowa’s election integrity and finding ways to save Iowa taxpayers more than $200,000. I expect they will continue with their attacks since I am a threat to their agenda. The liberal media may not like me, but I’m not about to quit fighting for Iowans.