*Governor Terry Branstad has issued two disaster proclamations, for six counties, two of them in our area: Des Moines & Lee. The first proclamation allows state resources to be utilized, to respond to, and recover from, flooding & severe weather beginning on June 26th. Des Moines and Lee Counties are both covered. The second proclamation also activates the Iowa Individual Assistance Program for three counties, including Lee, but not Des Moines. Emergency Management Coordinator Gina Hardin says she has not heard from anyone in-need of the Individual program yet, but her office can be reached at 753-8206. Continue Reading
If you haven’t been through downtown Burlington today(Weds), Main Street is now closed from Valley to Division until further notice. As the river continues its gradual rise, city crews need to put up more flood protection and the railroad is raising the tracks on both sides of the intersection. In addition, Front Street will be one lane, with only local traffic allowed…and Public Works Director Steve Hoambrecker says it’ll help his men greatly if the sight-seeing is done from afar.
At the same time, Hoambrecker announced that sandbagging operations are ending this(Wed) afternoon and he gave a big “Thank You,” to all who’ve helped. Continue Reading
Local Congressman Dave Loebsack paid a visit to the Burlington Library yesterday(Tues) to talk to veterans about their health-care concerns. The Second District Democrat says having a new V-A Secretary should help, but it won’t solve all the agency’s problems….. Loebsack says the Veterans Administration has a number of challenges ahead, including inefficiencies. And Loebsack told the half-dozen-or-so in attendance yesterday(Tues) that there is another alternative to relying on the V-A — a voucher system allowing veterans to take their health-care business elsewhere. Loebsack says he hasn’t signed on to that legislation and won’t…until he gets more information. Continue Reading
As the river marches toward a predicted crest of 23.7 feet on Saturday and Front Street is now closed from Washington south, the City of Burlington is putting out an immediate call for volunteers to fill sandbags. If you can help, please check in with Tammy Anderson at the Public Works Building at 35-10 Division Street…right behind J-D Byrider on Roosevelt…as soon as possible. They’re also looking for volunteer sandbaggers in Niota…at the old Boddeker Boats building… In Fort Madison, they’ve postponed the 4th of July fireworks display over the river and no new date has been announced yet. Ft. Continue Reading
As the river marches toward a predicted crest of 23.7 feet on Saturday, the City of Burlington is putting out an immediate call for volunteers to fill sandbags. If you can help, please check in with Tammy Anderson at the Public Works Building at 35-10 Division Street…right behind J-D Byrider on Roosevelt…as soon as possible. Again, sandbaggers are needed in Burlington. Go to 35-10 Division, just west of Roosevelt. Continue Reading
As the Mississippi River continues to rise, Des Moines County’s Engineer is digging out the “Road Closed” signs. Brian Carter says you can bet your bottom dollar that one particular thoroughfare will flood first — Tama Road. If the water keeps going up, County Highway 99 will be next….. And speaking of roads, Carter says the reconstruction of Mediapolis road…at the curve, several miles west of Mediapolis…has been pushed back and probably won’t get underway now until the 14th. Continue Reading
The search is continuing for a 17-year-old boy after authorities in Cedar Rapids say he fell into a storm drain and was swept away. Heavy rain had overwhelmed the storm sewer system in many parts of the city Monday, causing water to rise in the streets and rush through neighborhoods. At least one death is blamed on the latest round of severe weather in Iowa. Officials say a man died when a building collapsed in the strong winds that blew through Fairfax. The building is owned by Intermec Technologies and authorities say the man was a worker. Continue Reading
The Burlington School Board has made its choice of a new superintendent and his name is Patrick — Patrick Coen. The board will vote on his $185,000 contract (plus benefits) tonight(Mon) at 7:30. The 50-year old chief of the nearby Winfield-Mt. Union district since July of 2009 says Burlington is not a district in trouble and he says he already has a vested interest in seeing the Burlington schools do well, because he’s from here and his parents and grandparents still live here. Coen says the fact that he’s moving from a very small (school) system…Winfield-Mt.Union…to a mid-sized district…Burlington, does make a difference…but he doesn’t find it intimidating because he served in the Iowa National Guard in Afghanistan, near the Pakistan border, one of the most dangerous places in the world. Continue Reading
The Burlington City Council holds one of its every-other-week work sessions this(Mon) afternoon and will hear reports from Sheila Newman on small business and from the Riverfront Advisory Committee.
There’ll also be discussion about some problems with the self-haul program during the citywide cleanup…the possibility of creating a fire-pit ordinance…and the monthly Treasurer’s report. The council will also debate the residency requirement for serving on city commissions, committees and other advisory panels. Today’s meeting is at 4:30 and the public is welcome. Continue Reading
Burundian Foreign Minister: Government Ready for Talks
BUJUMBURA—. Burundi's foreign affairs minister says the government is ready to talk to opposition parties and other opponents of President Pierre Nkurunziza's re-election bid, which resulted in a landslide victory last week.