The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

April 2, 2014

County may appeal benefits decision

By Samantha Pidde Herald Staff Writer
The Clinton Herald

---- — CLINTON — Clinton County may appeal a March 20 decision that will allow an on-call election official to receive unemployment benefits.

The Clinton County Board of Supervisors voted Monday to authorize County Attorney Mike Wolf to pursue any relief that is in the best interests of the county, including an appeal. Wolf explained Monday that he had not done enough research yet to determine if such an action was best. However, the deadline for an appeal is Friday, before the board will meet again.

According to a decision written by Administrative Law Judge Debra L. Wise, Mary Jones appealed a Feb. 14 determination that she was ineligible to receive benefits as of Jan. 5, because she had worked as an on-call election official. Jones has worked as an election official as-needed since November 2011. She also works seasonally for Remmington Seeds and does not expect to return to work for the company until September.

Wise determined that in this case, the rules for part-time employment do not apply. She wrote that instead, the case must use the regulations for on-call employment, which says a person with this type of employment is not disqualified from benefits if he or she is able and available for work, makes an earnest search for work each week and places no restrictions on employment.

Wise added that when a claimant has been separated from her regular employer – like Jones has been from Remmington seeds — she can continue to receive benefits while maintaining on-call employment, as long as she receives the same employment from this part-time employer as she did during the base period. Within the first benefit year, an employer will not be charged.