Today's Local News

Grassley refutes "Iowans for Tax Relief"

Posted: Thursday, August 13th, 2009 at 4:49 am

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley is refuting claims by the group “Iowans for Tax Relief” that he’s working with Democrats on a healthcare bill. Grassley says he’s there to ensure that the country doesn’t end up with a “government run” system. The New Hartford Republican says the country’s healthcare system does need some work, but feels congress could make it worse if they’re not careful. The “Iowans for Tax Relief” began circulating an email this week urging people to politely voice their concerns over the single payer system at Grassley’s town hall meetings. Meanwhile, a Democratic state lawmaker from eastern Iowa is calling on Grassley to dispel what he calls myths about the healthcare debate. Iowa City State Senator Joe Bolckom says Grassley should focus on healthcare consumer reforms.


Posted: Thursday, August 13th, 2009 at 4:42 am

This evening’s (8/13) Thursday Night Live activities in downtown Washington will feature the music of Patrick Hazel. The Chamber of Commerce says Pat has traveled with world with his unique style of music. They say he’s “classical trained and Mississippi River raised.” He uses a harmonica, keyboard and his voice for an earthy blues sound. Pat takes the stage at 6:30. The farmer’s market starts at 5:00

Rubio sewer system update

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:58 am

Plans for a new sewer system in Rubio are moving slowly. County Supervisor Wes Rich says the Regional Utility Services System is trying to implement new cluster-based septic systems for the town, but is first required to obtain permission from residents. He says they currently have approval from 65-percent of the residents and are working on the rest. He says these improvements would help create a healthier environment and improve quality of life for residents.

Riverside could take over county park

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:58 am

Riverside could be taking over a Washington County park. Conservation Director Steve Anderson says the city is in a better position to care for the park than the county is. He says the entire park is actually in the city limits. There will be a public hearing tonight (8/12) at 4:30 at the Marr Park Conservation Center on the proposal.

Loebsack starts E. Iowa tour

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:58 am

Congressman Dave Loebsack began his month-long tour of town hall meetings yesterday (8/11) which will eventually bring him to Washington, Columbus Junction, Fairfield and Mt. Pleasant. Loebsack says these meetings are held so he can discuss topics and issues important to Iowans. The congressman will hold the Mt. Pleasant meeting Saturday at the Civic Center at noon. There is a complete schedule on the main page of this website

Engineer discusses bike ban

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:58 am

A group calling itself the “Citizens for Safety Coalition of Iowa” is advocating a bicycle ban on the state’s farm to market roads. Washington County Engineer David Patterson says about one-third of roads in the county are farm to market routes. He says the state has a map showing preferred bicycle routes for both county and state roads.

Hamakua seeks donations for rummage sale

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:57 am

Hamakua Place Youth Center in Washington is planning a garage and bake sale in late September. Center Director Deb Bodensteiner says they are looking for donations of gently used household items such as furniture. She says they do have space to store it if people want to move items now. Bodensteiner says donations are tax deductible.

M-P teachers starting soon

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:57 am

Students at Mid-Prairie don’t start classes for two more weeks, but teachers will be back next week. Superintendent Mark Schneider says the new year will kick off for new teachers on August 18 with an orientation day. New teachers will review school policies and go over important dates and events for the upcoming year.

Area schools starting soon

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:57 am

Area schools are starting up this month, some as early as this week. Washington County Sheriff Jerry Dunbar says this will mean an increase in both pedestrian and motor vehicle traffic. Dunbar says people also need to mindful of school buses. He says it’s illegal to pass a stopped school bus with it’s flashing stop signals extended.

WCT presents Frankenstein

Posted: Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 at 4:34 am

The Washington Community Theater is putting on a production of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein this October. It’s described as a rescue of the classic story from simplistic notions of horror and fear. Auditions for the production will be held the first two days of September at the Washington Community Center. Scripts are available at the Public Library. Roles are available for eight men three women and one boy.

WCHC purchases digital mammography equipment

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:19 am

Washington County Hospital and Clinics is now able to offer high tech treatment in fighting breast cancer. WCHC spokeswoman Kathleen Brinning says the facility has purchased scanners and computers which can store information and test results digitally. Brinning says this will eliminate the need to develop film prints of scans and reduce the need for repeat scans due to under or over exposure. If you would like to schedule a mammogram or have any questions, call the hospital at 319-863-3964.

Early frost could threaten crops

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:19 am

Iowa is on pace to set a record for corn yields, and the southeast part of the state is no exception. Gene Mohling with the ISU Extension service says most areas have enough moisture to sustain corn and soybean crops until harvest. Mohling says crop maturity is slightly behind due to an unusually cool and wet season. He says this could be troublesome in the event of an early frost.

Celebrate your Senses to be featured in video series

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:19 am

Main Street Washington’s inaugural Celebrate Your Senses event is being featured in a video series by an Iowa based blogger and regional magazine editor. Allen Huffman is with Clear Lake based Regional Renaissance Reporter. He learned about Celebrate your Senses while at Trekfest, in Riverside. The preview video is available on YouTube. It can be found by running a search for Celebrate your Senses.

WFD receives $150K grant

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:18 am

The Washington Fire Department will get some extra help in purchasing a new engine. The Washington County Riverboat Foundation will present the fire department with a $150,000 check during a ceremony Thursday. The Riverboat Foundation supports various non-profit and government projects that improve. They invite all to the presentation ceremony at 10:00 am.

WPD traning new K-9

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:18 am

The Washington Police Department is training a new four legged officer. Canine Handler Brett Sorrells says Ultro is a 15 month old Belgian Malinaw, who will be trained in a couple of different areas. Sorrells says he’s had Ultro for about a month. He says the two of them are in the “bonding stage.” Sorrells says that involves getting the animal used to his surroundings and other people.

Harkin: healthcare reform resistance based on misinformation

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:18 am

Iowa Senator Tom Harkin says a great deal of money can be saved on medical costs through prevention. He blames resistance to healthcare reform on “misinformation” and “scare tactics” Harkin says there are a lot of people who stand to lose money if the system is overhauled. The Democrat is traveling around Iowa, hosting town hall style meetings on healthcare reform.

Park Board approves new reservation policy

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:17 am

The Washington Park Board has adopted a new policy for reserving the large pavlion in Sunset Park. It can be reserved for 25-dollars per day. Parks Superintendent Tim Widmer says the reservation will be advertised for six days before the event. He says the new policy only applies to the big pavilion, and that all other shelters are on a first come first serve basis. For more information or to make a reservation contact Widmer at 653-5220.

Where to get vitamin D

Posted: Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 4:17 am

10 percent of American kids dont get enough vitamin D. Thats according to a recent study by USA Today. Washington County Public Health Administrator Edie Nebel says vitamin D is primarily obtained through sunlight and not enough time in the sun can result in a deficiency. Nebel says kids need at least ten to fifteen minutes of sun exposure a day along with the vitamin D found in foods. She says additional nutrition can be found in vitamin supplements. Nebel says kids need plenty of vitamin D in order for healthy bone development.

Barn quilt unveiling tomorrow

Posted: Monday, August 10th, 2009 at 6:54 am

The Washington County Barn Quilt Committee is unveiling its latest addition this week. Julie Mangold is committee co chair. She says it will symbolize the beginning of a new barn quilt trail. The Washington Chamber of Commerce is holding an Alive After Five at Steve Greiner’s, just west of the city on 250th Street in conjunction with the unveiling. It runs from 5 to 6:30 Tuesday (8/11) night.

Search and rescue exercise held in Washington

Posted: Monday, August 10th, 2009 at 6:54 am

Emergency workers from across the board descended on Washington Saturday to search for a missing Woman near the Kewash trail. Fortunately no one was actually missing. It was a simulation put on by Iowa based STAR-1 Search and Rescue. Even though it was a drill, workers treated it like the real deal. The drill ran from 10:00 to 3:00 Saturday.