MAQUOKETA, Iowa — John Kies of Bellevue has been appointed the new Jackson County magistrate.

The Judicial Magistrates Nominating Commission deliberated about 20 minutes after interviewing three candidates Friday afternoon.

The other candidates were Scott Nelson of Dubuque and Brad Boffelli of Cascade, who recently purchased Mark Lawson’s law practice.

Kies was Jackson County Attorney seven years ago. For the past seven years, Kies has been in private law practice with his office in Bellevue.

Kies replaces Mark Lawson, who was recently named as a judge for the Seventh Judicial District. Kies begins his magistrate duties soon.

The nominating commission includes Steve Kahler, Tom Breuch, Lin Redling and Jon Thoms. Phoebe Keck, who had been a member of the commission for many years, resigned last week.

All three men were interviewed in open session Friday afternoon. The deliberations were in closed session. The commission did not say why Kies was chosen.

Questions posed to the candidates included how they would juggle their private practices with the part-time magistrate position. All indicated they would be able to make time for the position. The magistrate’s position also includes being on call after hours to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office as needed for those people arrested.

Kies cited his work in Jackson County over the past 14 years as a plus to be a magistrate. Kies said he will no longer be able to take on criminal work, but he can continue his private practice for civil and real estate work in the county.


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