Board of Iowa insurance pool travels far for public meetings

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Board members of an obscure Iowa government insurance program have spent tens of thousands of dollars in public money travelling to out-of-state resorts for meetings.A review by The Associated Press finds that directors of the Iowa Communities Assurance Pool hold two meetings annually at posh locations such as Florida in February and Michigan in August.Meeting minutes and spending records show that the practice makes the meetings virtually inaccessible to the public while increasing costs to the pool, which includes roughly 750 counties, cities, towns and other municipalities.One county supervisor says the board’s spending may be excessive, and an attorney calls the out-of-state meetings ridiculous.Board chairman Jody Smith defended them, saying the Florida meetings coincide with a national conference and Michigan was close to the pool administrator.Ryan J. Foley, The Associated Press

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