1. Definitions. As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:
a. "Account" means the Iowa conservation corps account.
b. "Corps" means the Iowa conservation corps.
2. Iowa conservation corps established. The Iowa conservation corps is established in this state to provide meaningful and productive public service jobs for youth, unemployed persons, persons with disabilities, disadvantaged persons, and elderly persons, and to provide participants with an opportunity to explore careers, gain work experience, and contribute to the general welfare of their communities and the state. The corps shall provide opportunities in the areas of natural resource and wildlife conservation, park maintenance and restoration, land management, energy savings, community improvement projects, tourism, economic development, and work benefiting human services programs. The department of workforce development shall administer the corps and shall adopt rules governing its operation, eligibility for participation, cash contributions, and implementation of an incentive program.
3. Funding. Corps projects shall be funded by appropriations to the Iowa conservation corps account and by cash, services, and material contributions made by other state agencies or local public and private agencies. Public and private entities who benefit from a corps project shall contribute at least thirty-five percent of the total project budget. The contributions may be in the form of cash, materials, or services. Materials and services shall be intended for the project and acceptable to the department. Minimum levels of contributions shall be prescribed in rules adopted by the department.
4. Account created. The Iowa conservation corps account is established within and administered by the department. The account shall include all appropriations made to programs administered by the corps, and may also include moneys contributed by a private individual or organization, or a public entity for the purpose of implementing corps programs and projects. The department may establish an escrow account within the department and obligate moneys within that escrow account for tuition payments to be made beyond the term of any fiscal year. Interest earned on moneys in the Iowa conservation corps account shall be credited to the account.
5. Participant eligibility. Notwithstanding any contrary provision of chapters 19A and 96, a person employed through an Iowa conservation corps program shall be exempt from merit system requirements and shall not be eligible to receive unemployment compensation benefits.
96 Acts, ch 1186, §14; 97 Acts, ch 23, § 8; 99 Acts, ch 21, §4
Referred to in § 15.343, 84A.5, 97B.1A
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