DES MOINES, Iowa — A state audit shows there were more confidential settlements paid out to former state employees than first thought. The audit looked into the four-year period between July 2010 and June 2014.
It found the state settled 680 grievances with former workers. Off those, only 38 received payments from the state — totaling $2.4 million.
Nine of those agreements were entered into by the Department of Human Services and its institutions. That’s the most of any state agency.
The money for those settlements came from the state’s General Fund and Internal Service Fund.
The audit shows federal funds were not used.
Confidentiality clauses were included in 42 settlement agreements. That’s 11 more than originally identified.
“The remainder were overlooked as part of a transition between paper documents to digital storage format. So when we did the initial review in March we had looked through our electronic files but our staff neglected to go through the hard copies,” says Caleb Hunter with the DAS.
The audit also suggested more transparency. The DAS spokesperson says the department is working with the auditor to develop databases and tracking to facilitate full transparency for the settlement agreements.