Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Washington BOS slated for closed session

Washington County Supervisors are slated to go into closed session this morning (5/26) to discuss an ongoing legal dispute with the city of Riverside. County Auditor Bill Fredrick says they helped levy funds for several infrastructure projects when the casino was built, and as a result Riverside is supposed to pay the county $175,000 per year out of the revenue they receive from the casino. Attorney's for Riverside say the contract caused the city to exceed its debt limit, therefore making in void under state law. The meeting starts at 9:30 this morning in the Washington County Courthouse.

Loebsack in Washington today

Congressman Dave Loebsack will be in Washington this afternoon (5/26). The Mount Vernon Democrat will be at Washington County Hospital and Clinics at 2:15 as part of his Healthcare Reform Tour. He'll be meeting with health care providers to get a better understanding of the services they provide and their payment delivery systems. Loebsack will also visit University Hospitals in Iowa City and Unity Healthcare in Muscatine. He says he's gathering information for the upcoming health care debate in Washington D-C.

Teen pregnancy numbers stable in SE Iowa

A spokesperson for Planned Parenthood of Southeast Iowa says teen pregnancy numbers have been fairly static in this region. Terri Bonar says much of the country has seen an increase. She says part of the reason for the nationwide hike is the use of abstinence only education. Bonar says areas of the country that utilize such methods actually have higher rates of teen pregnancy.

Washington Library update

The fence blocking the street in front of the new library in Washington will be coming down next month. City Administrator Dave Plyman says they'll still have to block traffic while a contractor works on the downtown improvement project. The library is expected to move into the new facility this summer. They say they're taking inventory and making decisions about what will travel with them. As a result the Teen Advisory Board will be selling video and audiotapes at the Ridiculous Days celebration on June 6.

Liquor request in limbo

Whether a Washington restaurant can serve alcohol in an outdoor setting is still up in the air. City councilors have left the item tabled at the past couple of meetings. Mayor Sandra Johnson says the ordinance committee is looking into the request from Cafe Dodici. Johnson says if the ordinance committee drafts guidelines to allow the restaurant's request the item will likely be un-tabled. She says if they don't come up with anything she'll ask councilors to take it off the table and put the issue to rest.

Louisa Co to receive more disaster funds

The Iowa Department of Economic Development (IDED) announced the state approved additional disaster recovery projects in seven cities affected by natural disasters in 2008. Louisa County will receive $1,557,000 through the CDBG and $11,865,000 through the EDA Disaster Relief Grant to. The City of Columbus Junction will receive $920,000 through the CDBG and $2,930,000 through the EDA Disaster Relief Grant. The funding sources are the Community Development Block Grant Contingency and Imminent Threat Funds.

Kalona Pool

It feels like summer outside and many kids and parents are ready to start heading to the pool. Kalona Parks Superintendent Todd Fitzsenry says they have been working very hard to make sure that the Kalona City Pool is open and ready. Fitzsenry says they will be open from 1pm until 6pm on weekends until school is out for the summer.