Lance Private Brands May Soon be Baking More than Snack Crackers at Burlington Plant

It all depends on state tax credits, but there may be dozens of new jobs coming to Burlington’s Lance Private Brands plant. Economic Development Director David Toyer revealed at tonight’s City Council work session that the corporate parent of Snyder’s-Lance, Shearer’s Foods, LLC, wants to build a $30,000,000 addition to the local factory, add a new line of baked goods and create 83 new jobs, at an average salary of $16.20 per hour. The Council gave its unofficial blessing to the Greater Burlington Partnership to apply for the tax credits. Continue Reading


Council “Tweaks” Curfew Ordinance; Public Hearing on Proposal Next Monday

There were some minor differences of opinion, but the Burlington City Council agreed by consensus tonight to make some small changes in the nightly curfew for young people. Under the current ordinance, those 17-and-younger must be off the streets between 11 pm and 5 am on school nights, and between 12:30 am and 5 am on non-school nights. Under the proposed revisions, those 15-and-younger will have to be off the streets between 9 pm and 5 am on school nights and from 10 pm to 5 am when there’s no school the next day.   In addition, those 16 and 17 have to be in on school nights from 11 pm-5 am and from midnight to 5 am on non-school nights. There’ll be a public hearing on the proposed changes next Monday evening at the regular City Council meeting. Continue Reading


Shockley Resigns from Burlington City Council

The Burlington City Council will soon be one member short. At the end of tonight’s work session, Councilwoman Becky Shockley announced that she’s been offered an unspecified business and educational opportunity that will require travel, and she’ll no longer be able to properly serve the needs of her constituents nor attend council meetings.   She didn’t give a resignation date, but said her new job will begin this December.  It’ll be up to the remainder of the Council to decide when and how to fill the seat. Shockley, who along with her husband owned and operated the former Tom’s Market & Meats, used the occasion to challenge the citizens of Burlington to demand that their city become a place to be proud of. Continue Reading


Branstad Walks FM Rodeo Parade Route, Says He Wants to Win LeeCo

Governor Terry Branstad walked in the annual Tri-State Rodeo Parade in Ft. Madison over the weekend, then talked to reporters at the local Republican headquarters. I asked him if he really wants to win Lee County and he chuckled and said he does, “I make no bones about it,”  and reminding us that he’s never won here before. Branstad’s opponent…State Senator Jack Hatch…says the Governor “gave away the farm,” when he brought the fertilizer plant to Wever, a charge Branstad vehemently denies.  In fact, he pointed to  his administration’s jobs-training programs, “Skilled Iowa,” and “Home-Base Iowa,” designed to teach civilians and returning military personnel the skills they need to fill the jobs that are available now. Continue Reading


Burlington Schools May Share Baked Goods

The Burlington School Board meeting starts tonight(Thur) at 7 and may focus on goals for the School Improvement Advisory Committee. The board will also consider a food-service agreement with New London and members will hear about the accomplishments of the Burlington High School Dance Team. The meeting is open to the public. Continue Reading


Curfew, Indoor RecPlex on Burlington Council Work Session Agenda

The Burlington City Council holds one of its every-other-week work sessions today(Mon) and will talk some more about instituting an earlier curfew for young-people. (There’ll be a public hearing on the proposal in one week.) Also up for discussion today(Mon) is a committee study and fundraising for a possible indoor sports & recreational facility near the RecPlex…..economic help for Shearer’s Foods for the expansion of its local plant…..and parking on the street when it snows. Today’s(Mon) meeting is at 4:30, on the 3rd floor of City Hall. The public is encouraged to attend or watch on community access cable channel-18. Continue Reading

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Governor to Walk in FM Rodeo Parade, Speak at Reviewing Stand

It had only been a rumor, but now it’s been confirmed — Governor Terry Branstad will walk in tomorrow morning’s Tri-State Rodeo Parade in Ft. Madison. Organizer Gene Enke says the annual parade will step off around 9:30 and Branstad will get to the reviewing stand, at the corner of Avenue G and 8th Street, about an hour later, and will speak til about 10:45. At 11, there’s an hour-long public reception scheduled at Lee County GOP headquarters, across from the Ivy Restaurant, at 619 7th Street. Continue Reading

LeeCo Supervisor Ron Fedler Withdraws FM County Seat Ordinance; Residents Tell Board to Slow Down

With several hundred people looking on in the Central Lee Middle School gym, Lee County Supervisor Ron Fedler “did a 180″ last(Thur) night on his proposed ordinance to give Ft. Madison the sole title of county seat.  

The board had included public input in the process and a number of residents took advantage. Michael Connor and some others suggested that small service centers be placed throughout the county.  Sandy Iverson recommended a central location, such as Donnellson, if consolidation is chosen as the best route. Continue Reading


Scam Alert! Scam Alert!

Lee County authorities are warning of another scam being used in the area. In it, Ephran Price is soliciting businesses in the Ft. Madison area, asking that they purchase phone book covers for advertising purposes. Sheriff’s deputies say you should contact your local police if this person approaches you. Continue Reading