Friday, July 10, 2009
Overall, Washington residents feel they have a pretty good place to live. That's the assessment of a survey conducted by a group of Chicago high school students. The conducted the survey in conjunction with the Mikva Challenge and the University of Iowa's political science department. Some concerns expressed include employment, shopping and street conditions. The results of the survey are preliminary at this point. The U of I will tabulate them and come back with more representative numbers. Mayor Sandra Johnson says they hope to take the survey questions and put them on the city's website.
Area residents came out in droves to last night's (7/9) farmer's market in downtown Washington to get a hold of an Iowa favorite. Tom Vittetoe was one of the first local growers to have sweet corn this year. He says the first four of five days of the season are the best for sales. Vittetoe says the first picking wasn't as good as usual due to cool wet weather. He says they also had some wind damage. The buyers didn't seem to mind. Vittetoe says around 1,100 ears of corn were sold in less than 20 minutes.
The recently appointed ISU regional director serving this area will have his offices located in Iowa City. Gene Mohling was appointed to the position as part of a statewide restructuring of the extension service. Prior to the shift, he was already serving as education director for Washington and Johnson Counties. He'll now also be responsible for the Keokuk and Iowa County Extension Councils. His first official days as regional director will be August first.
Voters in the Washington school district will be asked if almost 12-million dollars in bonds should be issued. School board members this week approved calling for the special election in September. Board President Eric Turner says if approved, the money will be used for the first phase of a massive facilities overhaul. Turner says this plan has helped mend divisions between groups that wanted to build a new high school, and those who wanted to renovate the old one. He says a citizens committee that's campaigning for issuing the bond is comprised of both groups of people.
The Washington area Habitat for Humanity is looking for some volunteers. The organization's Lynette Seivers says they can use everyone from the most skilled carpenters, to those with no construction experience. She says if your not comfortable swinging a hammer, you can help by bring food and beverages to other volunteers. To find out more contact the Washington area Habitat for Humanity.
The Poet Laureate of Iowa will be stopping by her summer home, Kalona, to share some of her newest poetry. Mary Swander makes her home in an Amish schoolhouse during the summer months and will be at the Kalona Library telling the story of a mother and daughter trapped on a roof during the flood of 1993. Swander says the story is a fun and funny tale of personal discovery, but one that is not geared towards children. Swander will be at the library Thursday, July 23.
There are more road closures in Washington due to construction on the IC&E Railroad. City Engineer Rob McDonald says the Marion Avenue crossing between 3rd and 5th Streets are now closed. McDonald says they are attempting to improve ride quality by replacing the pavement near the crossing area. He says motorists should use the Iowa Avenue crossing as an alternative route. McDonald says theyre hoping to have all construction done by Wednesday.