Muscatine’s city administrator and council members react to open records request

MUSCATINE, Iowa - City leaders in Muscatine have refused to answer our questions as the city council tries to oust the mayor.

WQAD News 8 continues to push for answers.

At the end of August News 8 asked how much the city billed or quoted prices to other media outlets when they requested documents regarding Mayor Diana Broderson.

This is the second request that News 8 sent to Muscatine City Administrator Gregg Mandsager, he has yet to respond.

Mandsager billed WQAD more than $1,200 to get documents reflecting the amount spent by the city to impeache the mayor, when we received them, they didn't say much of anything.

News 8 asked the city administrator and council members why the city is not being transparent about open records requests.

"WQAD's attorney and the city's attorney are corresponding to resolve that matter," said Gregg Mandsager, city administrator.

"I'll be happy to talk to them about it but at this point this is the first I've heard you're having an issue," said Tom Spread, third ward representative .

"Share that information with us and we can help you out because we're definitely not in a position to try and hide anything," said Santos Saucedo, at large representative.

"No comment," said Michael Rehwaldt, second ward representative.

"Not in a position to comment," said Allen Harvey, fifth ward representative.

"I'm not part of it so I really don't know what the stance is, why they're not, if they're not," said Scott Natvig, at large representative.

Our legal team has spoken to the city's attorney and the city is still not releasing the documents.

Below is the full attempt to get answers.

 

Clarification:  The day after airing of Christina Hepner’s October 19 story  “Muscatine’s city administrator and council members react to open records request” we found out about a letter dated October 10 that was sent to WQAD’s corporate attorney.  The contents of that letter were not passed along to us until October 20. It stated that Muscatine the contents of our second open records request is waiting for us pending our payment of $145 for costs and fees for the production of our request.  Prior to this  WQAD had reached out to the City Administrator several times with no response.  WQAD has paid the $145 fee and we are now awaiting the documents to be produced.