Archive for February, 2009

$500,000 to Washington Schools

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:20 am

The national stimulus bill President Obama signed yesterday should be sending extra money to Washington schools. U.S. Representative Dave Loebsack of Iowa visited Washington school district yesterday and reported the district would receive an estimated $500,000. He says the district can use the money as it sees fit.

New Chamber Director

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:19 am

The Washington Chamber of Commerce has named a new director. The board has hired Tim Coffey as their new executive director. Coffey moved to Washington in 2001 from Mason City and opened Coffey and Associates, which is a fund raising consulting business. Chamber Board President Sue Basten says Coffey brings an incredible amount of non-profit experience and will bring a new type of energy and enthusiasm to the chamber. Coffey replaces Susan Wellington who left to become the executive director of Lending Hands Adult Day Care.

City Council Meeting

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:19 am

The Washington City Council has a public hearing tonight on allowing the city to guarantee the repayment of capital loans using property taxes. City Administrator Dave Plyman says they are looking at issuing $3.5 million in bond notes for a project. This tells the investor that the city guarantees the note will be repaid and if needed, the city will levy property taxes to repay the loan. The hearing will be part of the council's meeting tonight at seven at the Washington Public Library.

Recycling Center

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:18 am

A reduction in the value of materials collected at the county recycling center is causing the Supervisors to have to commit more money to its operation. Washington County Supervisors took action yesterday to allocate $28,0000 provided the city also funds the recycling center at that level. The $28,000 is up from $16,000 this fiscal year. Supervisor Jim Rosein told fellow supervisors the reason for the increase is the value of the recycled materials has declined.

Kalona City Council

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:18 am

The Kalona Historical Village is very thankful to the city council. The Kalona Historical Village Executive Director Steve Reif was present at the city council meeting on Monday to stand before the council and attendees to express the villages heartfelt thanks. The city council approved the villages request to help with funds to help pay some expenses.

Improv night at Kalona Library

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:17 am


Improv night is coming to the Kalona Library. Youth Services Librarian Marissa Tartaglia says there will be around six or seven teens that will be putting on a show for the public. She says the show will be like the TV show Whose Line is it Anyway. Tartaglia says the Teen Advisory Group will be the participants and it will be Monday at 6:45pm in the Kalona Library.

Riverside City Council

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 10:17 am

The Riverside City Council is looking at projects coming up within the next year. City Clerk Tina Thomas says the City Engineer spoke to the city council on Monday about going to bid for work on a commercial road in Riverside. Thomas also says the council set a date for a public hearing on the 2009-2010 budget estimate. The date for the public hearing will be on March 9th at 6pm.

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2009 at 9:28 am

$500,000 to Washington Schools
The national stimulus bill President Obama signed yesterday should be sending extra money to Washington schools. U.S. Representative Dave Loebsack of Iowa visited Washington school district yesterday and reported the district would receive an estimated $500,000. He says the district can use the money as it sees fit.

New Chamber Director
The Washington Chamber of Commerce has named a new director. The board has hired Tim Coffey as their new executive director. Coffey moved to Washington in 2001 from Mason City and opened Coffey and Associates, which is a fund raising consulting business. Chamber Board President Sue Basten says Coffey brings an incredible amount of non-profit experience and will bring a new type of energy and enthusiasm to the chamber. Coffey replaces Susan Wellington who left to become the executive director of Lending Hands Adult Day Care.

City Council Meeting
The Washington City Council has a public hearing tonight on allowing the city to guarantee the repayment of capital loans using property taxes. City Administrator Dave Plyman says they are looking at issuing $3.5 million in bond notes for a project. This tells the investor that the city guarantees the note will be repaid and if needed, the city will levy property taxes to repay the loan. The hearing will be part of the council’s meeting tonight at seven at the Washington Public Library.

Recycling Center
A reduction in the value of materials collected at the county recycling center is causing the Supervisors to have to commit more money to its operation. Washington County Supervisors took action yesterday to allocate $28,0000 provided the city also funds the recycling center at that level. The $28,000 is up from $16,000 this fiscal year. Supervisor Jim Rosein told fellow supervisors the reason for the increase is the value of the recycled materials has declined.

Kalona City Council
The Kalona Historical Village is very thankful to the city council. The Kalona Historical Village Executive Director Steve Reif was present at the city council meeting on Monday to stand before the council and attendees to express the villages heartfelt thanks. The city council approved the villages request to help with funds to help pay some expenses.

Improv night at Kalona Library
Improv night is coming to the Kalona Library. Youth Services Librarian Marissa Tartaglia says there will be around six or seven teens that will be putting on a show for the public. She says the show will be like the TV show Whose Line is it Anyway. Tartaglia says the Teen Advisory Group will be the participants and it will be Monday at 6:45pm in the Kalona Library.

Riverside City Council
The Riverside City Council is looking at projects coming up within the next year. City Clerk Tina Thomas says the City Engineer spoke to the city council on Monday about going to bid for work on a commercial road in Riverside. Thomas also says the council set a date for a public hearing on the 2009-2010 budget estimate. The date for the public hearing will be on March 9th at 6pm.

Washington Page
7:30 a.m. & 12:55 p.m. Sue Basten, Washington Chamber of Commerce Board President Hiring a new chamber director
Listen to the interview on the Radio Plus page.

In Touch With Southeast Iowa
12:50 p.m. Wes Rich, Washington County Supervisor
Listen to the interview on the Radio Plus page.

News Photo Archive

U-S Representative Loebsack’s visit

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:47 am

Iowa U-S Representative Dave Loebsack is visiting the Washington Community School District today. Interim Superintendent Dave Sextro says Congressman Loebsack will be in the district's central office from 10:00-11:30am. Sextro says Loebsack wants to discuss green schools and green construction. Loebsack is also interested in hearing from juniors or seniors wanting appointments to one of the military academies. Sextro says the public is welcome to attend Loebsack's visit.

Wellman fire under investigation

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:46 am

The investigation into a Wellman house fire continues. Friday evening's fire seriously damaged a home owned by Tim Hathaway. The fire fighters determined there was no one inside the house during the blaze, and there were no injuries as a result of the fire. The Washington County Safety Center says the Fire Marshall and the Wellman Fire Department are looking into the cause.

Washington County Supervisors

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:46 am

Washington County Supervisors will vote on going out to bid for the project to build the work release area of the county jail. The Supervisors meet at 9:30 this morning. The project at the jail was not included in the original construction because the county wanted to make sure they didn't go over the $5-million approved by voters. Supervisors will also discuss their funding level for the county recycling center. Finally they'll act on a board appointment to the land use and planning commission.

Law Enforcement Increase

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:46 am

The Washington County Board of Supervisors approved a 3 1/2 % increase in the amount cities in the county will pay the Sheriff's Office for contract law enforcement. Sheriff Dunbar says the cost of law enforcement to Kalona rose from just under $69,000 to just over $70,000. Sheriff Dunbar says the majority of the money goes to deputy salaries.

Unemployment Meeting

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:45 am

Workers unemployed because of the summer flood or current economic climate, can learn about services out there that can help. The Kirkwood Dislocated Worker Program is putting on an informative meeting tomorrow at the Washington County Fairgrounds in the new building. Attendees can find out what assistance is out there including some special assistance for those out of work because of the flood last summer. The meeting starts 9:00 am tomorrow morning.

Box Tops for Education

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:45 am

You can donate money using scissors. Stuart Media Specialist Kathleen Kishel says you can look on your cereal boxes or other items around the house for the Box Tops for Education labels from General Mills items. Kishel says they can be sent in and redeemed for ten cents for each label. Kishel says last October they sent in a batch and got a check in December for $900s. Kishel says she uses the money to replace worn books in Stewart's library. Just send your labels to the school with a student or drop them off.

Farm Bill Program

Posted: Tuesday, February 17th, 2009 at 10:44 am

The Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 contains a wide variety of legislation affecting everything from school lunches to milk checks. Keokuk County Extension Education Director Gary Bickmeier says new payment rules basically attribute USDA commodity payments to individual taxpayers, regardless of the number and nature of farm business they are involved in. An informative meeting on the Farm Bill Program for Keokuk County will be held February 26th beginning at 6:00 pm at the Expo Fairgrounds in Sigourney. Registration is not required but is encouraged in case of weather cancellations. For registration or further information contact the Keokuk County Extension Office at 641-622-2680.

Mid Prairie Bomb Threat

Posted: Monday, February 16th, 2009 at 12:02 pm

The Mid Prairie High school received of a bomb threat last week. Sheriff Dunbar says it has been determined the threat was false. He says the investigation is still on going. He says the main deputy in charge of the investigation is located at the school. Dunbar says they are talking to people and is certain that the person or persons responsible will be held accountable

Young Professionals Day at Capitol

Posted: Monday, February 16th, 2009 at 12:02 pm

Washington young professionals, you are invited to take a day and see the state government at work. You’re invited to Young Professionals Day at the Capitol. Young Professionals of Iowa Board Member Adam Mangold says it’s a great chance to see what goes on in state government, seeing both houses in session and talking with state lawmakers from the area. Young Professionals Day at the Capitol is February 23rd. If you are interested you can contact Mangold at 653-2421.

US Census

Posted: Monday, February 16th, 2009 at 12:01 pm

With 2010 just around the corner, the U.S. Census Bureau is preparing to do that head count they do every ten years. Darrel Hysler works in the Cedar Rapids Office and says they are mandated by the Constitution every ten years to count the U.S. population. Hysler says they are currently hiring local workers to help with the process. He says the jobs pay between $11.75 and $15 an hour and have flexible hours which is good for someone out of work and looking around. If you are interested call 866-861-2010. 

Government Offices Closed Today

Posted: Monday, February 16th, 2009 at 12:01 pm

Local government offices are closed today for the President’s Day holiday. The county courthouse and county offices will not be open. Also Washington city offices will be closed and the Post Office will be closed. They will reopen tomorrow. 

Kalona City Council

Posted: Monday, February 16th, 2009 at 12:00 pm

The Kalona City Council will be holding their meeting tonight. Carri Bell, representative from the Kalona Elementary will be there to give an update on the Kalona Elementary Playground Project. Also Parks & Recreation Superintendent Todd Fitzsenry will be giving a proposal for upcoming improvements in the park. The Kalona City Council meeting will be held at the Kalona Public Library meeting room tonight at 7:30.