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Iowa City Bruegger’s employees vote against establishing bagel chain’s first union

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Iowa City Bruegger’s employees vote against establishing bagel chain’s first union


Employees at an Iowa City Bruegger’s location voted against unionization on Tuesday, ending an effort that would have established the first worker’s union at the nationwide bagel franchise.

Workers voted against unionization at the 708 S. Riverside Drive Bruegger’s location during the morning and afternoon on Tuesday. All employees who were on the payroll as of June 18 were eligible to vote in the election. Vote totals were not immediately available.

Bruegger’s Workers United shared a statement on X, formerly known as Twitter, about 45 minutes after the voting period came to an end.

“I’m saddened to say that the hard workers of Bruegger’s Bagels on Riverside in Iowa City voted against a union,” the group wrote. “This is not the end of BWU. Bruegger’s has made a mockery of justice with their relentless union-busting tactics, and we will not rest til they are held accountable.”

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Union organizer Juniper Hollis was not immediately available for comment.

The vote against unionization comes less than three weeks after the National Labor Relations Board ruled in favor of workers and cleared the way for a vote to be held. The board ruled that Bruegger’s employees had “clearly” met the qualifications to attempt to become a “labor organization.”

From June: Iowa City Bruegger’s Bagels employees get clearance to hold chain’s first union vote

NLRB Regional Director Jennifer Hadsall, who delivered the ruling, shrugged off the bagel brand’s arguments against establishing the labor organization, writing that employees seem to have multiple fronts on which they want to engage Bruegger’s leadership, including “wages, workplace respect and paid time off.”

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The downtown Iowa City Bruegger’s location was not part of these bargaining efforts.

Picketing, labor board ruling preceded vote

A small group of employees gathered outside of the 708 S. Riverside Drive location on June 15, demanding recognition of “Bruegger’s Workers United,” the unionization effort with a similar moniker to the successful downtown Iowa City Starbucks unionization effort conducted last spring.

Hollis is a former Bruegger’s employee at the recently closed Coralville location. Employees alleged that the closure, which came shortly after employees first publicly announced their intention to unionize, was in response to union action. Bruegger’s previously declined the Press-Citizen’s request for comment.

From June: Workers at Iowa City, Coralville Bruegger’s Bagels sites picket over unionization attempt

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The closure and other actions prompted the workers to petition the NLRB for unfair labor practices. Hadsall wrote in the board’s June 21 ruling that the labor organization is in its beginning stages.

According to the board’s ruling, there is no official union constitution, dues have not yet been collected, and there is no official meeting space. Hollis’ apartment hosted the two meetings prior to the delivery of the board ruling.

“While the Petitioner is not yet fully fledged, the record establishes sufficient evidence to establish labor organization status under the Board’s liberal standards,” Hadsall wrote.

Ryan Hansen covers local government and crime for the Press-Citizen. He can be reached at rhansen@press-citizen.com or on X, formerly known as Twitter, @ryanhansen01.



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Kirk Ferentz still committed to Iowa after watching friends Bill Belichick, Nick Saban move on

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Kirk Ferentz still committed to Iowa after watching friends Bill Belichick, Nick Saban move on


INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz watched two of his best coaching friends, Bill Belichick and Nick Saban, leave football after last season.

So, naturally, college football’s longest-tenured coach smiles and nods as he reflects on his own potential exit.

“All of us have to do that,” the 68-year-old Ferentz said Wednesday at Big Ten Media Days. “Fifteen years ago, the pause was going to come because I was going to get fired. I’m not saying that’s not a possibility as we move forward, but it’s probably a little less a percentage and more realistic toward retirement. At some point, you retire. It’s up to everybody. Both Bill and coach Saban are older than I am.”

The connection runs deep for Ferentz.

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In what seems like a lifetime ago, he and Saban were assistants on Belichick’s staff with the NFL’s Cleveland Browns coach from 1993-95.

Ferentz enters his 26th season as the Hawkeyes’ coach with a 208-140 record and as the school’s career leader in victories. His only Big Ten titles came in 2002 and 2004, and his contract, which pays $7 million per year, runs through 2029.

The Hawkeyes should be strong again this year, returning a veteran group from a squad that went 10-4 in 2023. Ferentz has hired a new offensive coordinator, Tim Lester, to replace his son Brian in hopes of producing more points. Iowa also believes former Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara could be part of the solution after suffering a season-ending knee injury in the Hawkeyes’ third game last year.

Meantime, Ferentz has been checking in on his friends.

“He and I have exchanged some notes, but we haven’t had a personal conversation,” Ferentz said when asked about Belichick. “I’m a little lower level than those guys, easily. They’ve got a little seniority on me, but it’s all relative, too. They’re both in good health. I feel good. As long as you feel good and like what you’re doing, you keep doing it.”

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Ferentz has been around long enough to see the Big Ten nearly double in size, with 18 members, athletes getting paid and the transfer portal. It’s not a world he recognizes.

“I’ll go back to 1990, when I was a head coach at Maine,” Ferentz said. “It was a couple of weeks into the job. I came home one day and I told my wife, ‘If I ever come home and say I’m surprised by anything, just hit me with a baseball bat right in the head.’ One thing I learned real quickly is you never know what’s going to happen.”

Rosy playoff

CFP Executive Director Rich Clark, a retired Air Force lieutenant general, confirmed Wednesday that Rose Bowl officials have requested the game continue to be played around New Year’s Day even though it could be out of the national championship game hosting rotation.

Game officials endorsed the new 12-team playoff format earlier this year.

Clark said the playoff committee would consider granting the request, though no other bowl game in the rotation has made a similar request.

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Known as “The Granddaddy of Them All,” the Rose Bowl has been played the first week of January every year since 1916. The first Rose Bowl was played in 1902.

Familiar foes

When first-year Michigan State coach Jonathan Smith left his alma mater, Oregon State, after last season, he landed in a league that doesn’t feel so new with four of his former Pac-12 foes — Oregon, UCLA, Southern California and Washington — joining the Big Ten.

What does feel different, though, is wearing green — the predominant color of Oregon State’s biggest rival.

“I have not worn much green leading into this,” Smith said Wednesday. “But I do have green eyes.”

He’ll be seeing plenty of green again on Oct. 4, when the Spartans play at Oregon. By then, he also could be seeing red thanks to a demanding midseason stretch during which the Spartans host Ohio State and Michigan while visiting Oregon and Iowa.

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Smith was a four-year starter at Oregon State and turned the program around when he returned as coach. He went 25-13 in three seasons and was named the league’s coach of the year in 2022.

Endorsing Leach

Southern California coach Lincoln Riley added his name to the list of advocates for the late Mike Leach to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame despite Leach’s 59.6% career win percentage falling short of the 60% minimum.

Riley played quarterback for Leach at Texas Tech in 2002 and then became a Red Raiders assistant through 2009. Leach died in 2002 at age 61 from heart complications.

“Obviously, Mike Leach meant a lot to my career, was instrumental in my upbringing,” Riley said. “I know there’s been a lot of debate and talk about him belonging in the College Football Hall of Fame, and certainly (I) want to voice my support for that happening here on this stage. That’s something that’s very important to me. He changed the game and changed a lot of people’s lives, mine included, in the process of it. I know there’s technicalities and rules that have to happen, but I totally agree that the Hall of Fame is simply not complete without Mike Leach being in it.”

Awkward moment

First-year UCLA coach DeShaun Foster turned heads with the briefest opening statement of the first two media days before saying he’d take questions. The ensuing pause led to an awkward moment on the stadium field, where reporters are working.

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The soft-spoken Foster explained later he’s an “ask me” kind of guy who doesn’t tend to give long opening statements.

___

Get poll alerts and updates on the AP Top 25 throughout the season. Sign up here. AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/college-football





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Ex-Iowa football wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland joins Kansas as offensive analyst

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Ex-Iowa football wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland joins Kansas as offensive analyst


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IOWA CITY — Former Iowa football wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland has joined the Kansas football program as an offensive analyst.

Copeland, who served as the Hawkeyes’ wide receivers coach for seven seasons, was a part of the changes made to the offensive coaching staff following the 2023 campaign. It was officially announced in January that Copeland’s contract at Iowa was not renewed.

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More: Former Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz to join Maryland football staff

“I appreciate Kelton’s contribution to the Hawkeye staff and wish him the very best,” Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said in a statement released in January.  

Iowa made an internal hire to fill Copeland’s position, promoting Jon Budmayr to wide receivers coach. The Hawkeyes also added ex-Western Michigan coach Tim Lester as its new offensive coordinator, taking the place of Brian Ferentz.

Copeland shared a lengthy statement via social media in late January, reflecting on his time with the Hawkeyes.

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“Since my arrival in Iowa City seven years ago, my family has been welcomed with open arms. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Kirk Ferentz & the coaching staff for inviting me to be the Wide Receivers coach at the University of Iowa. One person in particular I want to thank is Phil Parker. PP, I have learned a lifetime of lessons from you. I truly appreciate your leadership and wisdom!”

Kansas has built some significant momentum under head coach Lance Leipold. The Jayhawks have made a bowl game in each of the last two seasons, including a 9-4 mark in 2023.

Copeland’s coaching stops include Iowa, Northern Illinois, South Dakota and now Kansas, among others.

Follow Tyler Tachman on X @Tyler_T15, contact via email at ttachman@gannett.com





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Iowa Sen. Grassley posts video of aftermath of Trump shooter's killing

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Iowa Sen. Grassley posts video of aftermath of Trump shooter's killing


U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley on Tuesday posted video that showed the aftermath of the killing of Trump shooter Thomas Crooks, with law enforcement agents on a rooftop alongside his body.

Grassley on X demanded answers and accountability following the July 13 assassination attempt targeting former President Donald Trump as he spoke at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania. Trump was shot in the ear.

Crooks was shot and killed after firing at Trump. Crooks shot and killed one other person and wounded two others when he opened fire at the event.

The body camera video posted by Grassley, R-Iowa, shows Crooks’ body on the roof of the building from where he fired. The video also showed blood by the shooter’s body.

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“We NEED detailed answers ASAP on security failures,” Grassley wrote on X. “TRANSPARENCY BRINGS ACCOUNTABILITY.”

In the video, someone in a black suit and sunglasses speaks with law enforcement officers armed with rifles and wearing body armor following the shooting and Crooks’ subsequent killing.

Thomas Matthew Crooks.Bethel Park School District via AP

An officer points out a rifle lying on the roof, though it is not clear whether it is Crooks’.

The officer whose body camera is recording mentions that a sniper had seen a person coming from a bike and setting a backpack down, but lost sight of him. It is not clear in the video if the officer is talking about Crooks.

Grassley wrote that the video was obtained from the Beaver County Emergency Services Unit after requests from Congress. The Beaver County Sheriff’s Office has an unit by that name, which is a tactical team that responds to high-risk incidents.

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The U.S. Secret Service and Beaver County Sheriff’s Office did not immediately respond to requests for comment Tuesday night.

Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers in Congress have demanded answers about how Crooks was able to open fire at a former president, and the Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General said it has opened three reviews surrounding the incident.

U.S. Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle resigned Tuesday. She wrote in a resignation letter that she takes “full responsibility for the security lapse.”

Crooks’ motive has not been determined.

Pennsylvania State Police Col. Christopher Paris, who heads the agency, told a House Homeland Security Committee hearing Tuesday that Crooks had been identified as suspicious before the shooting.

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Crooks had been spotted “milling about and he stood out to them because he never made his way to a point of ingress to the venue,” meaning Crooks was milling about but not trying to enter, and that Crooks was later seen with a range finder.

Paris said the Butler County Emergency Services Unit, tasked with securing the building where Crooks fired from, relayed the suspicion and a photo of Crooks to the state police, which then passed along the message to the Secret Service.  

Crooks was not designated as an actual threat until seconds before he opened fire, Paris said.

Trump, now the official Republican nominee for president, plans to no longer hold outdoor rallies following the assassination attempt, according to two sources familiar with his campaign’s operations. The current plans are for those events to be held indoors instead, they said.



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