Joyce Russell

Correspondent

Joyce Russell is a correspondent based at the Iowa Statehouse. Joyce has been covering the Iowa Statehouse since shortly after joining the news staff at WOI Radio in 1988. Her earlier broadcasting experience included news reporting at commercial stations in Oklahoma City and Fort Wayne, Indiana. Joyce’s reports can be heard on National Public Radio and American Public Media programs including All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Marketplace.  She covered the last six Iowa caucus campaigns and interviewed numerous candidates for president, including some who went on to attain the highest office in the land.   

Joyce  has a bachelor’s degree in English from Saint Louis University and  a master’s degree in English from the University of Oklahoma.   

Joyce’s favorite public radio program is Fresh Air.

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Statehouse and Politics
4:58 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Bakken Oil Spill Feared

Landowners at Bakken pipeline informational meeting in Fort Madison
Joyce Russell/IPR

A lawmaker whose land will be traversed by a proposed oil pipeline wants protection for landowners.

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Statehouse and Politics
7:11 am
Wed March 4, 2015

Republicans: Let Private Schools Compete

Banner announcing lobbying day for private schools at the Capitol
Joyce Russell/IPR

School choice advocates flooded the Iowa statehouse Tuesday.

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Crime, Justice and Public Safety
6:25 am
Wed March 4, 2015

Gun Rights Bill Advances

Nathan Gibson and daughters Meredith, 11, and Natalie, 9, lobbying for child gun possession
Joyce Russell/IPR

A wide-ranging firearms bill cleared a bipartisan panel in the Republican-controlled Iowa House.

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Statehouse and Politics
4:03 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Empty Fort Madison Prison Draws Attention Amid Ballooning Project Budget

Fort Madison's Maximum Security State Penitentiary, established in 1839
Alex Heuer

Iowa’s new state penitentiary in Fort Madison is still empty, and now officials are worried about frozen pipes.

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Legislative Day
10:38 am
Tue March 3, 2015

Lawmakers Push Back Against Gov. Branstad’s Plan to Shut Mental Hospitals

John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

Sheriff's officers across the state say there aren't enough beds for Iowa's mentally ill, and some lawmakers are joining their cause.

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Statehouse and Politics
6:00 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Paulsen: Teacher Raises Too Big

Iowa House Speaker Kraig Paulsen says teacher salary raises are too high.
John Pemble/IPR

A standoff between Democrats and Republicans over funding for K-12 schools next year continues at the statehouse.

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Statehouse and Politics
8:28 am
Fri February 27, 2015

Cities Fight AT&T over Cell Phone Towers

Cellphone Towers in Lansing, Michigan
Wes Thorpe/flickr

Cell phone companies are going head to head at the statehouse with Iowa’s towns and cities.

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Statehouse and Politics
8:00 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Psych Patient Transfer Called "Inhumane"

Rep. David Heaton (R-Mount Pleasant)
iprimages

Sheriff’s officers and other officials report a shortage of psychiatric treatment beds across the state.

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Statehouse and Politics
7:11 am
Wed February 25, 2015

Court Hears Case Against Governor Branstad

Iowa Judicial Branch Building
John Pemble IPR

Attorneys in a lawsuit over the closing of the Iowa Juvenile Home for Girls in Toledo presented oral arguments before the Iowa Supreme Court.   

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Statehouse and Politics
4:06 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

Gas Tax Hike Headed for the Governor's Desk

Senator Tod Bowman (D-Maquoketa)
Joyce Russell/IPR

With broad bipartisan votes, the Iowa House and Senate approved a bill raising Iowa’s gasoline tax by 10 cents a gallon.

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Statehouse and Politics
8:17 am
Mon February 23, 2015

More Privacy Sought for Public Employees

Iowa State Capitol
Photo by John Pemble

Iowa public employees would have more privacy while forming a union under proposed legislation in the Iowa House.  

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Statehouse and Politics
8:15 am
Mon February 23, 2015

A Hike for the Gas Tax Likely, Not for Minimum Wage

Iowa capitol
John Pemble IPR

Iowa lawmakers pushed a hike to the state’s gas tax even further along last week. A bill to raise the state's gas tax by ten cents a gallon is on the fast track at the statehouse. 

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Statehouse and Politics
5:14 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

Democrats: Lesser Marijuana Penalties Still Tough

State Senator Steve Sodders
Iowa Senate Democratic Staff

Senate Democrats want to reduce the number of African-Americans in prison.

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Statehouse and Politics
5:54 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

Republican Lawmaker: Freeze Teacher Salaries

Amazing Teachers
Karina/flickr

There was an angry debate in the Iowa House Education Committee.

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Statehouse and Politics
9:35 am
Wed February 18, 2015

Delinquent Girls' Treatment Debated

Judicial branch spokesman David Boyd says girls need a treatment option simillar to the boys' home in Eldora, now that the girls home in Toledo is closed.
Joyce Russell/IPR

Juvenile court officers are painting a bleak picture for delinquent girls since the state’s training school closed.   

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Statehouse and Politics
3:14 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Branstad: Pass Tax Hike Fast

Governor Terry Branstad at his weekly news conference.
Photo by John Pemble

Gov. Branstad today gave his clearest signal to date that he is prepared to sign a gas tax increase into law. 

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Statehouse and Politics
8:19 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Softer Penalties for some Marijuana Charges, Gas Tax Talks Continue

Iowa Capitol
Credit John Pemble / IPR

Talks about an increase of ten cents a gallon to the state’s gas tax have really been the dominant topic to come out the statehouse this session. 

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Statehouse and Politics
3:06 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

"Do Not Hire" List Under Scrutiny

State Sentors Matt McCoy and Janet Peterson before Senate Oversight Committee, August 2014
Joyce Russell/IPR

Democrats in the Iowa Senate fought back against the Branstad administration’s hiring and firing practices.

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Statehouse and Politics
10:17 am
Wed February 11, 2015

Republican Lawmaker: Ease Marijuana Penalties

Marijuana
Tomas de Aquino/flickr

A bipartisan senate committee voted overwhelmingly to ease the penalties for some cases of first-time marijuana possession.  

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Education
12:01 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Student: Online Bullying is Constant

Governor Branstad pushes for anti-bullying legislation during his weekly press conference in the Capitol’s Rotunda. He is flanked by Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, his wife Christine, and a number of teenage Iowa school students.
Photo by John Pemble

Junior high and high school students from across the state rallied at the capitol today.

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Education
9:44 am
Tue February 10, 2015

Mason to AIB Students: Tuition Break Possible

AIB students at House Appropriations Committee
Joyce Russell/IPR

Academic counselors from the University of Iowa will be on the campus of the American Institute of Business in Des Moines this week.

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Education
5:23 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

Board of Regents Nominee Faces Questions from Iowa Senate

Iowa Statehouse
John Pemble/IPR

Iowa state senators today questioned Greene County social worker Sherry Bates, Governor Branstad’s nominee to the Iowa Board of Regents.

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Legislative Day
4:31 pm
Mon February 9, 2015

Rastetter: New Regents Funding Model Free of Political Motivations

President of the Board of Regents Bruce Rastetter
John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

Board of Regents President Bruce Rastetter denies that there’s a political agenda behind a new proposed funding formula for Iowa's three state universities.

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Statehouse and Politics
7:54 am
Mon February 9, 2015

A Difficult Session and Playing Nice with the Gas Tax Bill

Iowa capitol after a recent snowstorm.
Credit John Pemble / IPR

Democrats who control the Iowa Senate are proposing a big push for school funding. But it could be a tough sell. It’s just one of the issues being discussed up at the statehouse. IPR's Clay Masters talks with Statehouse Correspondent Joyce Russell about that as well as challenges in the overall proposed state budget and continued talks about a hike in the state's gas tax to pay for the state's deficient roads and bridges. 

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Statehouse and Politics
4:48 pm
Wed February 4, 2015

Iowa's African Immigrants Seek to Braid

African Hair Braiding
Heath Harris/flickr

There’s a new coalition at the statehouse of African-American Democrats and free enterprise Republicans.  

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Statehouse and Politics
9:39 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Sunset Deadline for Online Schools

Iowa Statehouse
John Pemble/IPR

A bill to allow Iowa’s two fully online schools to continue operation cleared a hurdle in the House yesterday.    

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Statehouse and Politics
6:28 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Calling All Four-Year-Olds: Preschool's For You

Preschool Colors
Barnaby Wasson/flickr

More Iowa four-year-olds could enroll in preschool under a bill in the Iowa Senate. 

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Legislative Day
4:16 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Repeat Domestic Abusers Would Serve 85% of Sentence Under Governor’s Bill

Governor Terry Brandstad talking this morning at his weekly press conference about domestic violence.
Photo by John Pemble

Today Governor Terry Branstad announced the details of a bill to toughen penalties for repeat domestic violence offenders.

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Statehouse and Politics
7:47 am
Mon February 2, 2015

Gas Tax Talks Speed Along

Credit Photo by John Pemble

Lawmakers gained ground on a method to pay for the state’s deficient roads and bridges last week. It was one of the many issues likely to be an issue this week. 

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Statehouse and Politics
7:23 am
Thu January 29, 2015

Gas Tax Dreams

Activists at Wallace Building for Transportation Day
Joyce Russell/IPR

A coalition of cities, counties, and economic development officials lobby lawmakers for better roads.  

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