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Iowa officials seek help in collecting $558 million in court debts

Sep 17, 2011 Mike Garretson

In Iowa, officials are beginning to leverage bureau reporting and debt collection tactics to reel in much needed capital. State Court Administrator David Boyd asserted that shrinking revenues are forcing budget offices to heighten their efforts at recouping past dues, and the effect is being felt by the population. "The legislature has approved new collection procedures and reinforced several existing procedures to improve collection of unpaid fines and court fees," Boyd said in a statement this week. "As a result, our collection net is larger and stronger." According to KCRG-TV, outstanding debt to the Iowa state court system totaled more than $558 million as of late June. Nearly one-quarter of those dues involved traffic violations, and 71 percent involved criminal cases. Court officials also informed the source that they have entered into contract with Kansas City law firm Linebarger, Goggan, Blair, and Sampson to help collect court debts that have remained unpaid for more than a year.