Report: Iowa licensing boards are 'unaccountable' to public - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Report: Iowa licensing boards are 'unaccountable' to public

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - An investigation by a state agency has concluded that Iowa's professional licensing boards have become unaccountable to the citizens they are supposed to protect from misconduct.

An Office of Ombudsman report released Monday says the boards enjoy a culture of secrecy that produces "lackadaisical investigations, apathetic board members, poor documentation of deliberations, and questionable outcomes."

The ombudsman is an independent agency that investigates complaints against state and local government. The report examined the system of 36 boards responsible for regulating trained workers, from doctors to barbers. The boards investigate complaints and can discipline or remove licensees for misconduct.

Investigators found that many boards dismiss complaints without explaining their findings or rationale, angering complainants and breeding distrust in the outcome.

The report comes as lawmakers consider a bill to remove licensing requirements from several professions. The bill wouldn't address the secrecy criticized by the report.

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