AP top news in Iowa at 3:58 p.m. CDT

Jury supports former worker in Floyd County suitWAVERLY, Iowa (AP) — A jury has awarded more than $80,000 to a former paralegal after finding that Floyd County didn’t respond appropriately to her repeated complaints about sexual harassment in the county attorney’s office.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports (http://bit.ly/15cfqG2http://bit.ly/15cfqG2 ) that jurors returned their verdict Wednesday afternoon, finding that Theresa Farmer was sexually harassed by fired County Attorney Jesse Marzen.

Though Farmer complained to county supervisors and other officials about Marzen’s actions, which included unwanted touching and sexual comments, the county took no action. The case focused on Marzen’s conduct, but she only sued Floyd County.

Jurors awarded Farmer $81,519 for past and future emotional pain and suffering as well as past medical expenses.

Because they didn’t find Farmer proved she suffered retaliation, jurors didn’t award her money for lost wages or benefits.

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Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, http://www.wcfcourier.comhttp://www.wcfcourier.com

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Iowa sex offender gets prison for not registeringWATERLOO, Iowa (AP) — A Waterloo man who failed to register as a sex offender has been sentenced to more than three years in federal prison.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports (http://bit.ly/13mtdbqhttp://bit.ly/13mtdbq ) 41-year-old Dana Lamont Curry received the sentence Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Cedar Rapids.

Curry pleaded guilty to the charge in March. Prosecutors say he did not properly update his sex offender registration in Iowa from June 2010 through the end of November 2012.

Curry was required to register because of a previous second-degree sexual assault conviction in Colorado.

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Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, http://www.wcfcourier.comhttp://www.wcfcourier.com

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Official: Salad mix wasn’t produced in Iowa, Neb.LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A food-safety inspector said Wednesday that most, if not all, of the prepackaged salad mix that sickened hundreds of people in Iowa and Nebraska wasn’t grown in either state.

Iowa Food and Consumer Safety Bureau chief Steven Mandernach said at least 80 percent of the vegetables were grown and processed outside both states’ jurisdictions. Mandernach said officials haven’t confirmed the origins of 20 percent and may never know because victims can’t always remember what they ate.

Officials have said the salad was infected with cyclospora, a rare parasite that causes a lengthy gastrointestinal illness. Outbreaks have been reported in 15 states, although it’s not clear whether they’re connected.

Iowa law allows public health officials to withhold the identities of any person or business affected by an outbreak. However, business names can be released to the public if the state epidemiologist or public health director determines that disclosing the information is needed to protect public safety.

Mandernach said there is no immediate threat, so his office is not required to release information about where the product came from. He said state officials believe the affected salad has already spoiled and is no longer in the supply chain.

Food-safety and consumer advocates say the agencies shouldn’t withhold the information.

“It’s not clear what the policy is, and at the very least they owe it to us to explain why they come down this way,” said Sandra Eskin, director of the Pew Charitable Trusts’ food safety project. “I think many people wonder if this is all because of possible litigation.”

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Wisconsin couple gives $2 million to Iowa collegeWAVERLY, Iowa (AP) — A Wisconsin couple is donating $2 million to a northeast Iowa college to endow a faculty position in the school’s religion and philosophy department.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports (http://bit.ly/133iejohttp://bit.ly/133iejo ) Mike and Marge McCoy, of Ellison Bay, Wis., made the donation to Wartburg College in Waverly.

The college announced the donation Wednesday, saying it was the largest non-estate gift by an individual donor or couple that Wartburg has ever received.

The gift will fund the Mike and Marge McCoy Family Distinguished Chair in Lutheran Heritage and Mission.

Officials say the money will help the college deepen its roots in the Lutheran spiritual and intellectual tradition.

The McCoys are parents of two Wartburg graduates.

The college of about 1,750 students is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

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CenturyLink reaches deal with unionDENVER (AP) — CenturyLink and its largest union have announced a deal that could avoid a strike of 11,000 workers in 13 mostly western states, which threatened to disrupt phone and Internet service for millions of consumers.

The proposed agreement reached Tuesday night offers lump-sum increases and wage increases. It also provides new limitations on CenturyLink’s ability to transfer jobs to offshore call centers.

Workers had previously authorized a strike.

“We’re pleased to get an agreement after nearly a year of bargaining,” said Al Kogler, spokesman for the Communications Workers of America.

“CenturyLink and the CWA are pleased that we have come to an agreement that provides our employees fair and equitable benefits and will better enable us to deliver on our mutual commitment to serve our customers,” said Glen Post, CenturyLink CEO, in a statement.

The proposed agreement provides new limitations on CenturyLink’s ability to contract out and move call center work outside its service area, and includes a commitment to return jobs that have been outsourced and offshored, the Denver Post reported Wednesday (http://tinyurl.com/q3rg5gb).

CenturyLink says it is a four-year agreement that covers wages, pension and health care benefits. The Communications Workers of America sought a five-year deal.

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