26-of-27 Clerks Refuse to Sell Minors Tobacco

A 16-year old went undercover for the Burlington Police Department yesterday(Mon) and tried to buy tobacco from 27 local stores. Only one sold to the teen and 20-year old clerk Shayla Darnell of Burlington was cited for supplying tobacco to minors. She was working in the Jet Stop at 27-60 Mt. Pleasant Street. All 26 of the City’s other tobacco-license holders refused to sell to the 16-year old. Continue Reading

Cool bridges did not factor into the statistics.

Consultants Get Ball Rolling on Flood Mitigation Possibilities

A pair of consultants told residents at the Port-of-Burlington last(Tues) night that it’ll take a whole package of plans by the City…with their help…to get a multi-million dollar grant from the Iowa Flood Mitigation Fund.  

City Manager Jim Ferneau seemed to want to remind everyone of the most important aspects of any potential plan — keeping the lift station, Memorial Auditorium, the sewer plant, the Amtrak depot and the Port of Burlington dry. Burlington is looking for major help with downtown riverfront flooding and Leo Foley of Veenstra & Kimm and Ed Freer of SmithGroupJJR say it’s going to take a combination of prevention and drainage measures, including possible temporary or permanent flood walls…more permeable surfaces, including…potentially…the Memorial Auditorium parking lot, part of which was shown as a big splash pad in one concept drawing…and more water treatment options, including small wetland areas. Veenstra & Kimm…SmithGroup…and Stanley Consultants, the firm that’ll write the grant application…will need to get their work done within weeks. Continue Reading

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Davidson Files Paperwork to Run for Vacant City Council Seat

There are now two official candidates for an empty Burlington City Council seat. Tracey Watts of 10-03 Court Street filed his signed nominating petitions first…and now former Councilman and Mayor Jim Davidson of 20-08 South 12th turned his papers in to the Des Moines County Auditor’s office, which other candidates have until November 7th to do.  

If one more person files, though, there’ll be a primary election December 2nd…and whether there is or isn’t, the regular election to fill Becky Shockley’s seat on the Council will be December 30th. Continue Reading

“Little” RUSS May Replace “Big” RUSS

Nothing was decided officially yesterday(Mon), but the Des Moines County Board seems to like the idea of forming a new, smaller RUSS — that’s Rural Utility Service Systems — so the co-op that designs, builds and manages sewer systems in small, often unincorporated, towns can continue to help communities without interference from four counties within its current, 10-county organization. RUSS of southeast Iowa Executive Director Bruce Hudson says the courts have told the dissatisfied counties that they can’t leave the group as long as money is owed and their departure would create a detriment to the organization…but each project must receive unanimous approval from all 10 counties. Hudson says that’s no longer possible, so he wants to form a “little” RUSS. One project has already received a go-ahead…that’s in the town of Ollie in southern Keokuk County…..but the Mooar-Powdertown area of southern Lee County also wants a new sewer system and can’t get it, because of the four counties that refuse to move forward. Continue Reading

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Local Authorities Search for Gutsy, Middle-Aged Burglar

Area police are on the lookout for a tall, pale, skinny white man in his 40’s, with thinning, dark brown hair. He’s a suspect in a burglary…committed yesterday(Mon) afternoon around 2 o’clock…at a home on Highway 218 near Olds…while the owner was there. The man may’ve had a small amount of facial hair and was wearing blue jeans…a bright green shirt…and a gray pullover sweater. The break-in artist was driving a newer model, black or dark gray, 4-door, mid-sized vehicle…possibly a Honda Civic or Toyota Camry.  

Anyone with information is asked to call the Henry County Sheriff’s Office at 319-385-2712. Continue Reading

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First Person Files for Shockley Seat on Burlington Council

The first person to officially enter the race for Burlington city council is a man. Tracey Watts collected the necessary signatures on his nominating petitions and turned them in to the county auditor’s office. Others interested in filling the remainder of Becky Shockley’s term(about three years) may use the same procedure…and petitions are available on-line…with a November 7th filing deadline. If two or more people file, there’ll be a primary December 2nd.  The regular election is set for December 30th. Continue Reading

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DMCo Supervisors Gather to Look at Future of R.U.S.S.

The Des Moines County Board will hold a special work session today(Mon) at 1 o’clock with Bruce Hudson, the Executive Director of RUSS, the Regional Utility Service Systems cooperative in this area. At-issue is the refusal of several communities’ to pay their dues…and in the case of Mt. Union…its refusal to force its residents to pay for work that was done several years ago. The Burlington City Council will also conduct one of its every-other-week work sessions this(Mon) afternoon. Among the topics to be discussed are the aquisition of some land in Bonn’s Hollow…the soon-to-be-revived Police Reserve Program…and an update on efforts to control the emeral ash Borer. Continue Reading

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Burlington’s Fall Leaf Collection Begins

If you live in Burlington and your trash is picked up on Friday, today(Mon) is your first day of fall leaf collection in the city. If your garbage is picked up on Monday, your leaves will be collected tomorrow(Tues)… if collection day is Tuesday, the leaves will be taken on Wednesday and so on. The program continues thru December 5th on the same schedule. Continue Reading

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FM Prison Guard Suit in Jury’s Hands; Seeking $4.5-Million

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A lawyer for a female prison guard suing Iowa for sexual harassment says the Department of Corrections practice of allowing violent inmates to watch sexually graphic movies encouraged prisoners to harass and threaten her. Kristine Sink’s attorney, Paige Fiedler, told jurors in closing arguments Thursday that Sink tolerated threats of rape and murder. She is seeking up to $4.5 million for emotional distress. Sink says supervisors at the Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison allowed harassment by inmates and co-workers. Assistant Iowa Attorney General Tyler Smith, representing the state, says showing the movies was wrong but officials dealt appropriately with Sink’s issues, which he called no worse than other guards faced. Continue Reading