Jan 12, 2022 - Politics

Polk County Supervisor Matt McCoy stripped of appointments

A photo of Polk County Supervisor Matt McCoy.
Matt McCoy, back in 2014. Photo: Charlie Neibergall/AP

Polk County Supervisor Matt McCoy was removed from almost all county-appointed boards, committees and commissions through a resolution approved by the other four supervisors Tuesday.

  • His remaining role is the last alternate — behind the other supervisors — to the Mid-Iowa Association of Local Governments.

Why it matters: The Democrat and former state senator is running for re-election this year.

  • And without the appointments, McCoy will no longer have a say in certain county business.

Of note: McCoy's previous appointments included a seat on a homeless coordinating council and representation on multiple metro or downtown advisory boards.

Catch up fast: The supervisors, excluding McCoy, are named in a lawsuit by the county's former HR director Jim Nahas for extortion, libel and wrongful termination.

  • Nahas was fired a year ago for allegedly mishandling a sexual harassment claim that a female Polk County employee made against McCoy.
  • McCoy has denied the allegations and, in October, joined Nahas' ongoing lawsuit.

What they're saying: McCoy unsuccessfully argued Tuesday that supervisors have a constitutional duty to represent all residents and the board's decision purposely handicaps his ability to serve.

  • He accused the other supervisors of retaliation, and alleged they frequently violate the state's open meetings law by holding private meetings to predetermine decisions on important matters like board appointments.

The other side: Supervisor Tom Hockensmith said McCoy failed to keep other board members informed about issues linked with his previous appointments.

  • Chairperson Angela Connolly denied the board lacks transparency.
  • "I don't want to listen to you rattle on about us having illegal meetings … because that's not what we do," Connolly said.

What's ahead: McCoy anticipates supervisors will recruit primary and general election challengers, he told Axios Tuesday.

  • He's also writing another book. This one will be about his efforts to reform local government.
  • "People think Polk County is clean. No, it's a dirty, filthy place," McCoy said.
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