Business & Consumer Affairs

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Rail Giant BNSF Accused of Telling Arbitrator: ‘Our Way or the Highway’ — Report

BNSF is based in Fort Worth, Texas, but has an Iowa office.

A run-of-the-mill employment dispute could become a major embarrassment for railroad giant BNSF over an allegation that a senior executive threatened to blackball an arbitrator from the industry if she ruled against the company. In a federal court case set to go to trial the week of Sept. 14 in Tacoma, Wash., a fired BNSF Railway Co. employee accuses the company of legal corruption. The suit claims that the BNSF executive pressured the arbitrator to reverse a proposed ruling that initially was in the worker’s favor. Continue Reading →

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Some College Student Renters Must Battle Unfair Charges, Rigged Damage Deposit Requirements


ONE OF TWO STORIES: Hundreds of college students who rent private apartments while attending Iowa’s three public universities routinely are being taken advantage of by landlords who unfairly withhold security deposits that might be owed back to the students. Continue Reading →

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Documents Reveal Improper Charges Dumped On Iowa City Student Renters


ONE OF TWO STORIES: Iowa City student renters have been nickeled and dimed for several years, losing security deposits and facing fees for automatic cleaning charges and damages to public spaces over which they have no control. Documents in an Iowa City court case reveal the charges. Continue Reading →

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Developing Connections Could Keep Young Talent In Iowa


Brain drain is not a new problem, but Iowa employers must adopt new ways to attract talent by developing personal connections by focusing on career opportunities, fostering connections between employees and the community and providing mentorships to nurture young talent, panelists at a July 22 Brain Drain forum said.

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Wage Theft Reform In Iowa Stalls This Year


Wage theft in Iowa amounts to stealing a year of earnings from an estimated 39,392 minimum wage workers, totaling about $594 million, according to statistics gleaned from an Iowa Policy Project report. That's one of the reasons the Iowa Legislature considered a bill this year to help stop businesses from cheating workers. Continue Reading →

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Wage Theft Victims Face Daunting Task When Filing Iowa Claim


With dishes in hand, Katie Wilson, 27, headed into the Applebee’s kitchen in Coralville as her shift drew to a close. The Ames native said she leaned over the sink and began her nightly routine of washing the plates when she heard something that her managers said she wasn’t supposed to hear. Continue Reading →

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