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Dubuque & Tri-State News

City of Dubuque Halloween

Halloween will look a little different this year, and so will trick-or-treat night. The City of Dubuque urges those planning to hand out candy as a part of Dubuque’s COVID-19-safe trick-or-treat night on Saturday, from 5:30 to 7 pm, to do so in a creative and safe way. If you do plan to distribute candy, you can find tips on how to celebrate safely at www.cityofdubuque.org/celebratingsafely. The City urges all who choose to participate to maintain a distance of 6 feet from others and follow other public health measures for a safe and healthy Halloween.

National Family Literacy Month Carnegie-Stout

November is National Family Literacy Month. The Carnegie-Stout Public Library will celebrate by providing free story time kits to families with preschool-aged children and free chapter book kits, featuring the 2020 Kids All Iowa Reads selection, to families with children in elementary school during the month of November. Visit the Children’s Desk in November to pick up a kit, available while supplies last. The Carnegie-Stout Public Library is open daily and also has resources available online, please go to www.dubuque.lib.ia.us for more information.

Mask Mandate Consideration

The Dubuque County Board of Supervisors is once again deciding whether to issue a county-wide mask mandate. Last month the board voted 2 to 1 against the mandate, but as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in the county, the board decided to revisit it. In a special work session Monday night the county Board of Health, the sheriff, mayors from across the county, and the public were all in attendance. Supervisor Jay Wickham tells our coverage partners, KCRG TV, many people in the county have reached out asking elected officials to do something to mitigate the spread. Wickham also says there were people who expressed skepticism in regard to a mandate, saying that enforcing it would be unrealistic. The meeting on Monday night was only a discussion, but it could lead to a mask mandate resolution.

City of Dubuque Sustainable Energy

The city of Dubuque is looking for ways to use sustainable energy to help low-income communities through a Partners for Places grant. City officials recognized energy usage and burden as two main issues facing Black and Marshallese communities especially. This means people spend a large amount of their income on gas and electricity costs. The $8,500 grant will allow the city to meet with the community to learn about their struggles in paying energy bills and how they might use sustainable practices like weatherization. According to Gina Bell, a sustainable communities coordinator, then they will take what they learn to apply for an even bigger grant to implement these ideas. Bell mentioned that, while they cannot fix every problem, they at least hope to address those that align with the city’s climate action plan.

Jo Daviess County Law Enforcement Mail Scam

Jo Daviess County authorities are telling residents to be on the lookout for a new mail scam. Jo Daviess County Sheriff Kevin Turner and Galena Police Chief Lori Huntington are warning residents to beware of a group from Wichita, Kansas, that claims to be raising money for local law enforcement. The letter has been received in the Galena area. The letter claims to be raising funds to purchase emergency equipment for Galena, Illinois area police and sheriff departments. Turner and Huntington stated that their departments are not associated with this organization or fundraiser.

Loras Blvd. Open

Loras Boulevard is open to traffic again. It was closed between Bluff Street and Cornell Street for private utility work for several days last week. Parts of Loras Blvd. have had to be closed more than once for repair work after the explosion that destroyed one building and damaged several others on September 28th.


AAF Dubuque Non-profit Applications

The Public Service Committee of the American Advertising Federation of Dubuque is now accepting applications from non-profit organizations. Each year AAF Dubuque selects one local non-profit organization to donate the time and talents of advertising and marketing professionals to help the organization reach its advertising/marketing goals. The selected non-profit receives marketing assistance such as logo development, design of print pieces and advertising, media planning, copywriting, etc. Club members are professionals from the tri-state area who work in the marketing and advertising industries, ranging from advertising agencies to printing companies. Applications need to be returned by November 13th and available at aafdbq.org under the ABOUT tab and Public Service Campaign or go to the AAF Dubuque Facebook page for a link.




Archbishop of Dubuque Statement on Pope Message

The Archbishop of Dubuque has released a statement, responding to Pope Francis’s comments on same-sex civil unions. Archbishop Michael Jackels says “too much” is being made out of the Pope’s comment. He says the Pope’s main point seems to be that families love their children, regardless of whether or not they are in a same-sex relationship. He added that the Pope seems to make a point that people in a long term, stable relationship should enjoy some legal and economic guarantees. Pope Francis said that gay people should be welcomed in their families and there must be civil union laws so same sex couples are legally protected. The Dubuque Archdiocese statement emphasizes that… “Pope Francis has not and is not changing Church teaching. He is on record defending Holy Matrimony, and resisting efforts to redefine it.”

Maquoketa Valley Electric Loan

The Maquoketa Valley Electric Cooperative has received a USDA Rural Development loan to expand electrical service and install smart grid technologies in northeast Iowa. The $10 million, 35-year loan will fund investments to connect 88 consumers and build or improve more than 400 miles of electrical lines. $6.7 million of the loan will go toward investments in smart grid technologies. The Maquoketa Valley Electric Cooperative serves about 16,000 members in a service area of more than 3,272 miles across 9 counties, including, Dubuque, Delaware, Clayton, Jones, and Jackson counties.

Dubuque County Recorder Implores Public to Stay Away

Due to a recent COVID outbreak amongst numerous departments across Dubuque county government and the county response (or lack of) to the positive tests and exposures, County Recorder John Murphy wants the public to be aware of what they are walking into if they chose to do business with county entities. Dubuque County has had a minimum of three departments that have had positive COVID tests in the last week. These departments work closely together and their department head does not require their staff to wear masks, yet they are still working with the public on a daily basis. In a press release, Murphy states “I would strongly encourage the public to utilize mail service, online options and the drop boxes to do business with the county. Everything we do, can be done without it being in person.” He goes on to say he is incredibly disappointed with the county response to COVID and as a consumer, would be shocked to learn that a public entity is putting their employees and the public in harm’s way.

Dubuque Main Street Awards

Nine Downtown Dubuque projects and accomplishments were honored during Dubuque Main Street’s 35th Anniversary Virtual Awards Ceremony this week. Executive Director, Dan LoBianco, says in the Economic Development category, Midwest Girl won the award for Outstanding Retail (Expansion).  Wicked Dame won the Outstanding Hospitality award for best COVID-19 Impacted development. Also in the Economic Development category, the Marita Theisen Childcare Center at Steeple Square was recognized. The other categories included Design, Promotion, and Organization. For more information on all the winners and to see the online video, go to the Dubuque Main Street Facebook page.




Free Jule Rides Election Day

The Jule, Dubuque’s public transportation system, is offering free bus rides for voters this election season. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Jule has suspended fares until further notice, allowing voters to ride to the polls free of charge on Election Day, Tuesday, November 3rd. The Jule’s fixed-route service and on-demand service will provide free “Ride to Vote” rides during hours of operation from 6:15 a.m. until 6:45 p.m. Fixed-route buses will not deviate from regular routes but will provide rides to bus stops within reasonable walking distance of polling places in Dubuque. Upon request, transportation services staff will provide information to participants to assist with their navigation from fixed-route stops to polling places. Details on polling places and the locations of the nearest fixed-route bus stops are available at cityofdubuque.org/ridetovote.

Wastewater Leak

A pressurized pipe behind 754 Sunset Ridge blew a valve Tuesday and caused untreated wastewater to flow onto the nearby ground. The City of Dubuque Public Works Department was performing maintenance on a sanitary sewer line around 10:30 a.m. when the valve blew. Crews worked to repair the valve and flow was directed back into the pipe around 10:40 a.m. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources cautions people to keep their children and pets away from the noted area, which is posted, for 48 hours.

Greater Dubuque Development Gold Award

Greater Dubuque Development Corporation has received a gold award for the Community Broadband Expansion initiative for the category of Resiliency, Recovery and Mitigation from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). Category submissions had to represent a successful recovery from a natural or man-made disaster and/or represent replicable measures undertaken to promote long-term resiliency in the event of future disaster. The honor was presented at an awards ceremony during the IEDC Annual Conference, held virtually last week. Starting in 2016, Dave Lyons, Sustainable Innovations Consultant for Greater Dubuque Development, worked with the City of Dubuque to build new partnerships in public and private sectors to expand the broadband network and increase providers. These agreements and the cooperation of the partners have led to doubling conduit, quadrupling fiber, and increasing the number of providers from two to ten in the Dubuque community.

Kwik Care Nonprofit Partnership

Local nonprofits can submit applications through Sunday for the Kwik Care Nonprofit Partnership program in 2021. For years, Kwik Stop, Dairy Queen, and Fazoli’s customers have been a force for change in our community. Since 2002, spare change has added up to nearly $1.5 million for local nonprofits. Each month, Kwik Care features a local nonprofit partner and during each partner’s designated month, all money collected from the Kwik Care canisters is donated to the organization. Local nonprofits are encouraged to complete a Kwik Care Partnership application form at gokwikstop.com and submit it on or before Sunday, October 25th.


Dubuque Mid-Week Market Open Today

Today’s Mid-Week Farmers’ Market is back on after the weather cleared up. The weekly event, which features organic and natural produce and food, takes place every week on the corner of 11th and Iowa Streets from 4-8 pm. There is one more market scheduled for next Wednesday, weather permitting.

Dubuque Winter Farmers Market

Dubuque Winter Farmers Market kicks off their 14th season on Saturday, November 7, from 9 am – Noon in the Kennedy Mall. Winter Market is held in the former Younkers Men’s Storefront and will be open every Saturday (except December 26th) through April 24th. Approximately 35 regional vendors will be offering seasonal produce, eggs, meats, cheeses, honey, maple syrup, starter plants, herbs, baked goods, and more. In compliance with the City of Dubuque mask mandate, masks will be required to participate at the indoor Winter Farmers Market. Masks will be available for free at the door if you do not have your own. Social distancing measures will be in place between all vendor booths and shoppers are encouraged to keep a minimum of 6 ft. between themselves and others.

Free Prescription Disposal

Residents of Dubuque and surrounding areas will have an opportunity to clean out their medicine cabinets and have a free, convenient, and confidential disposal this month. Lieutenant Ted McClimon, Public Information Officer with the Dubuque Police Department, says the event will take place Saturday, October 24th from 10 am- 2 pm in the Sam’s Club parking lot. The disposal will help keep expired and unwanted medications out of the water supply and will feature extra safety measures where people can stay in their vehicles. You are asked to keep all substances in their original containers, if possible, and mark out any identifying information on prescription bottles. Unidentified medications will be accepted, no questions asked. The prescription disposal project is a partnership between the Dubuque Drug Task Force, DEA Diversion Program, DMASWA, and Sam’s Club.

Structure Fire

The Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office, along with Fire Departments from Epworth, Farley, Holy Cross, and Centralia-Peosta, responded to 23370 N. Bankston Road Monday around 9:08 am for a report of a structure fire. Upon arrival, a machine shed was found to be fully engulfed in flames. The homeowner, Joe Wolf, advised he was welding in the machine shed shortly before he noticed flames along a wall in the same area. Nothing appears suspicious at this time, and the damage is estimated to be in excess of $200,000.

Sewer Pipe Wastewater

A clogged sanitary sewer pipe off McDonald Drive Monday caused untreated wastewater to flow onto the nearby hillside. The City of Dubuque Public Works Department was notified of a clogged sanitary sewer line around 8 am. Crews worked to remove the blockage and flow was directed back into the pipe by 9 am yesterday. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources cautions people to keep their children and pets away from the noted area, which is posted, for 48 hours.

Dog Bite Incident

The City of Dubuque Health Services Department is seeking information regarding a dog involved in a biting incident that occurred on Saturday, October 17th, at about 6:00PM in the area of 2022 Central Avenue. The dog was being walked on a retractable leash by a juvenile female.  The dog is described as a a short, tan, terrier mix, wearing a red plaid coat. The Health Department needs the public’s assistance in finding this dog to verify the dog’s health status and vaccination history. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the Health Services Department at 589-4185 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. or the Law Enforcement Center at 589-4415 after hours or on the weekend.

Vote by Mail Signature

The Dubuque County Commissioner of Elections Denise Dolan reminds all voters who are voting early by mail to remember to sign the ballot return envelope before they put their ballot in a drop box or mail box to return to the Election Office. A ballot cannot be counted if the envelope is not signed. Election Office staff will be contacting voters needing to fix their mailed ballots. Voters who are contacted by the Election office to remedy their submitted ballots are urged to go to the Election Annex at 75 Locust to make the corrections. Voters are urged to make the corrections as soon as possible.

Deadline Early Voting

New voters in the November 3rd General election are reminded that the deadline for early voter registration is 5:00 pm, Saturday, October 24th. The Election office, 4th Floor of the Court House, and the Election Annex, 75 Locust Street, will be open from 8 am to 5 pm that day. Eligible voters with an Iowa driver’s license or non-operators ID can register to vote or update their registration online through the Iowa Department of Transportation at https://mymvd.iowadot.gov/Account/Login?ReturnUrl=%2fVoterRegistration. Voters may, also, vote early during office hours at the Election Annex or Office,  8:00 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday. For further information, contact the Dubuque County Election office at 589-4457 between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.



Nose Bitten Off During Fight

A Dubuque man has been arrested after a physical disturbance in which he bit another man’s nose off. Officials said it happened just after 11 p.m. on Saturday at 1491 Bluff Street. A criminal complaint said that 24-year-old Blayre Ward and 20-year-old John Turner III were asked to leave Noonan`s Tap after getting into a verbal disturbance with several other patrons. Ward and Turner continued their verbal argument with two other people before getting into a physical altercation in the alley west of the 1500 block of Central Avenue. During the fight, Ward punched a man and tackled him to the ground. The man was able to break free and ran, with the other person being attacked, to a residence at 1491 Bluff Street. Officials said Ward threw two large rocks at the residence causing damage to a window and threatened to kill the man’s family while yelling at him to come out and fight. Another physical altercation occurred between Ward, Turner and the man, with Ward throwing punches and Turner wielding a long metal pole. During this fight, officials said Ward bit most of the man’s nose off, which Ward later admitted to. Ward faces charges of criminal mischief, assault causing bodily injury, harassment, willful injury – causing serious injury, and interference with official acts. Turner was also arrested and charged with disorderly conduct in the incident. The man who had his nose bitten off was taken to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics where he will need surgery to rebuild his nose.






Dubuque Couple Halloween Donations

A couple in Dubuque has put up a massive haunted house to celebrate Halloween, and the goal is not just to attract people to visit, but to gather donations for two local non-profits. It took the Salwolkes two months to put the decorations up. Since October 1st, 1,870 people have visited. This is a family tradition that started more than 30 years ago. Their children, now adults, fly from across the country to join them in dressing up and scaring visitors on Halloween night. ” Cathy Salwolke tells KCRG-TV, recently they decided to give more than just a good scare. The couple has set up a dropbox in front of the house at 2750 Burden Ave. for donations to the Dubuque Food Pantry and the Veteran’s Freedom Center. Ross Salwolke said they are hoping COVID-19 doesn’t keep the kids in the community from enjoying the Halloween fun.



New President At Wartburg Theological Seminary

An alumna at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque has been named the new president there. Reverend Kristin Johnston-Largen currently serves as a professor of systematic theology at United Lutheran Seminary and associate dean of religious and spiritual life and college chaplain at Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania. Kristine Stache has been serving as interim president since the end of last year. Johnston-Largen will step into her new role on February 1st.

Three Injured In Crash In Jo Daviess County

A two vehicle crash in Jo Daviess County Friday afternoon sent three people to the hospital. According to the sheriff’s office a vehicle drive by 56 year old Adam Johnson of Galena was traveling east on West Stagecoach Road, just south of Scales Mound, while another vehicle driven by 65 year old Edmond Lee of Chicago was driving north on North Elizabeth-Scales Mound Road. As the two vehicles entered the intersection, Lee failed to yield the right of way to Johnson and crashed into Johnson’s vehicle. Lee was airlifted to OSF St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford to be treated. His passenger, 63 year old Su Ying Lee and Johnson were both transported to Midwest Medical Center in Galena. The accident remains under investigation.

Dubuque Woman Charged With Arson And Assault

Police arrested a Dubuque woman this week for assaulting her mother. 26 year old Mary Hall is also charged with arson involving an incident that happened this past summer. Hall is charged with assault and child endangerment in the incident with her mother Wednesday night and 1st degree arson and a second charge of child endangerment in the incident that occurred back on August 10th. Police say Hall had gotten into an argument with her mother over a phone. Her mother was watching Hall’s children at the time. Her mother told Hall to come and pick up her kids, and when Hall arrived she punched her 47 year old mother in the face several times as the children looked on. In the arson incident Hall is accused of trying to set fire to an apartment in the 15-hundred block of Bluff Street with lighter fluid. Police used traffic camera footage to identify Hall in that incident.

Free Drive-Thru Flu Shots Today

Crescent Community Health Center in Dubuque will host a free drive-thru flu vaccine clinic today. The event will be held at Flora Park and starts at 8 am and runs through 11 or until supplies last. People will be required to stay in their vehicles and must wear a mask. No walk-ups will be allowed. After you have been vaccinated, you are invited to drive thru the park and check out a resource fair that will be set up with community agencies. The free flu clinic is a partnership with Crescent, the city of Dubuque, Clarke University and Hawkeye Area community Action Program.

Dubuque Woman Charged With Arson And Assault

Police arrested a Dubuque woman this week for assaulting her mother. 26 year old Mary Hall is also charged with arson involving an incident that happened this past summer. Hall is charged with assault and child endangerment in the incident with her mother Wednesday night and 1st degree arson and a second charge of child endangerment in the incident that occurred back on August 10th. Police say Hall had gotten into an argument with her mother over a phone. Her mother was watching Hall’s children at the time. Her mother told Hall to come and pick up her kids, and when Hall arrived she punched her 47 year old mother in the face several times as the children looked on. In the arson incident Hall is accused of trying to set fire to an apartment in the 15-hundred block of Bluff Street with lighter fluid. Police used traffic camera footage to identify Hall in that incident.

Three Injured In Crash In Jo Daviess County

A two vehicle crash in Jo Daviess County Friday afternoon sent three people to the hospital. According to the sheriff’s office a vehicle drive by 56 year old Adam Johnson of Galena was traveling east on West Stagecoach Road, just south of Scales Mound, while another vehicle driven by 65 year old Edmond Lee of Chicago was driving north on North Elizabeth-Scales Mound Road. As the two vehicles entered the intersection, Lee failed to yield the right of way to Johnson and crashed into Johnson’s vehicle. Lee was airlifted to OSF St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford to be treated. His passenger, 63 year old Su Ying Lee and Johnson were both transported to Midwest Medical Center in Galena. The accident remains under investigation.

Integrated Cancer Center Now Open to Patients

The Integrated Cancer Center in Dubuque is now open to patients. UnityPoint Health – Dubuque Wendt Regional Cancer Center and Grand River Medical Group have partnered together to provide coordinated cancer care to the Tri-State area. Dr. Paul Lindholm says the new facility offer a variety of benefits for patients. This partnership equips patients, caregivers and cancer survivors with support services, expert clinical staff and multi-disciplinary care including genetic counseling, nurse navigators, oncology rehabilitation and support groups. By working together in one location, the Integrated Cancer Center will not only enhance overall patient care, but also help communication and coordination among providers. The medical oncology team at Grand River Medical Group are leaders in chemotherapy and Finley’s Wendt Regional Cancer Center are experts in radiation therapy and cancer support services. By combining the two together in one location, the Integrated Cancer Center will continue leading cancer care in the Tri-State Area.



Indigenous People’s Day

Indigenous People’s Day will be celebrated this weekend in Dubuque. The event was originally organized by the Multi-Cultural Family Center, the Meskwaki Nation, the University of Dubuque and the Dubuque Museum of Art. Taj Suleyman, director of equity for the Dubuque School District says the celebration will be held Saturday from 2 until 6 pm in Washington Park and will feature a presentation and a number of activities. There will also be Indian Fry Bread for participants to feast on. The event is free and masks are required. COVID-19 precautions will be followed, and you should bring lawn chairs and practice social distancing.

Texas Woman Sentenced For Driving Meth To Dubuque

A woman who drove methamphetamine from Texas to Dubuque will be spending some time behind bars. 34 year old Veronica Hinkle of Dallas pled guilty in September to one federal count of conspiracy to distribute meth and was sentenced yesterday to more than six years in prison. Records show that in June of 2017, Hinkle was recruited by her boyfriend to drive one kilogram of ice methamphetamine from Dallas to be delivered to a Dubuque man. Over the next six months Hinkle made multiple trips to Dubuque, each time delivering at least a kilogram of ice meth to the man and his associates. In January of 2018, she helped package nearly a kilogram of pure meth for her co-conspirators, but the package was intercepted by law enforcement officials in Iowa. Hinkle’s boyfriend and the man she delivered the kilogram of meth to were sentenced earlier for their roles in the conspiracy.

East Dubuque Library Expansion Project

The East Dubuque Library has launched a 1.6 million dollar capital fund raising campaign to meet a long-standing need to expand and remodel the library. Brian Gomoll, Library Director, says the expansion of the facility of more than 50-percent will include a community room for gatherings, speakers, films, workshops, children’s programs, and more. Library Foundation member Jerry Enzler says they have already raised 75-percent of the needed funding and need the financial support of the local and area residents to acquire the remaining funds needed. Enzler says the expansion will not only benefit residents of East Dubuque but the entire Tri-State region. The project also includes private tutoring and study rooms, an outdoor learning space, and ADA compliant bathrooms. In addition, the library will upgrade technology, increase literacy programming, and acquire more materials for learning and programming.

Video link to presentation…



MercyCare Opens Health Clinic In Monticello

MercyCare has opened a new clinic in Monticello and they hope this addresses some of the issues many in rural towns face with medical care. Dr. Steven Runde says the new facility allows them to have more advanced equipment. They also want to make an effort to help patients get routine testing done like mammograms and colonoscopies. But he says the biggest change is the new space provides room for specialized care. That’s something people have to travel quite a distance to get. Dr. Runde says they’ve seen a slight decrease in demand for services because of the pandemic. But he says they are considering extending the hours once the demand increases.

Dubuque Man Charged With Drug Possession

A  Dubuque man was arrested this week after authorities executed a search warrant at his home. 38 year old Marshall Mosby is charged with three counts of possession of drugs with intent to deliver and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Members of the Dubuque Drug Task Force and police executed the search warrant at Mosby’s apartment in the 1300 block of Bluff Street late Monday afternoon. Once inside they found about $20,000 worth of heroin, $6,000 worth of cocaine, psilocybin mushrooms and marijuana. Court records say that Mosby admitted that the drugs belonged to him and that he had been selling them from his apartment.

Dubuque Man Hits Moose With Motorcycle In Maine

A Dubuque man was seriously injured after the motorcycle he was driving crashed into a moose in the state of Maine this week. According to Maine State Police, 47 year old Eric Mond was driving the motorcycle along a street in western Maine Monday night, when he struck a moose in the road. Mond was ejected from the cycle and landed on his head on the concrete road. A wheel that was dislodged from the motorcycle from the impact then struck Mond in his head. Authorities say he was wearing a helmet.  He was treated at the scene before being airlifted to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.

Three Vehicle Crash In Grant County

A Platteville man was cited following a three-vehicle cash in Grant County last week. According to a press release issued by the sheriff’s office Wednesday, the accident happened last Friday morning at around 8 at the intersection of Highway 80 and College Farm Road in Platteville Township. A car driven by 21 year old Kailynn Martin of Warren, Illinois was traveling south on 80, when she came to a stop to make a left turn with her signal light flashing. A vehicle driven by 42 year old Sean McKenzie of Platteville was also traveling south, but didn’t stop in time and crashed into the back of Martin’s car. The impact caused Martin’s vehicle to spin out of control striking a vehicle driven by 22 year old Shakira Ruiz-Rodriguez of Darlington. McKenzie was transported to Southwest Health where he was treated for unknown injuries. Martin, Rodriguez and her two passengers were not injured. McKenzie was cited for inattentive driving.

Loras Blvd. Open

Loras Blvd. is now open for traffic.  It was closed for several days between Bluff Street and Cornell Street while there was water main work going on.

Ernst Judge Coney Barrett Hearing

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is set to face senators’ questions during a third day of confirmation hearings Wednesday. Iowa Senator Joni Ernst says Democrats have no choice but to make personal attacks because they can’t deny that Barrett is qualified. Ernst says she agrees with Barrett who declared Monday that Americans “deserve an independent Supreme Court that interprets our Constitution and laws as they are written.” Ernst says Judge Barrett has the temperament to be a great Supreme Court Justice. The Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled a vote to approve Judge Barrett’s nomination for 9 am Thursday, the morning of the last day of hearings. Barrett’s nomination is expected to be brought up for a vote at that meeting and then delayed for a week, per committee rules.

Darlington Area EMS Fundraiser

The Darlington Area EMS is hosting a pork chop sandwich drive-thru supper this afternoon. The fundraiser will run from 4:30-6:30 pm or until gone at the Ambulance Garage at 127 W. Louisa Street in Darlington. There will be a free-will donation will all proceeds supporting the Darlington Area EMS. If unable to attend, please consider sending a tax deductible donation to Darlington Area EMS, Inc: P.O. Box 82, Darlington, WI 53530.

Millwork District Project

The Dubuque city council recently put its’ stamp of approval on a development agreement with Conlon Construction and Kretschmer LLC. The agreement is for the redevelopment of a vacant building located in the Millwork District. Mayor Roy Buol says the agreement includes the creation of 48 apartment units. The city will provide around $480,000 for the units that will be located at the corner of East 9th and Jackson Streets. The cost to rent a unit will vary, but the property owners have to accept vouchers or section-8. According to the agreement, the developers are required to make a 10.million dollar capital investment, and the project has to be completed by the end of October 2021.

Purchase Of Services Grant Program

Applications are now available to not-for-profit and faith-based organizations that provide year-round human services programs in Dubuque. The Dubuque Housing and Community Development Department is now accepting applications for the Purchase of Services Grant Program. Funding for the program was determined by the city council during the budget process. The city’s adopted fiscal year 2020-21 combined budget allocated $100,000 for the program. Applications can be downloaded from the city’s website at cityofdubuque.org/POSG. Applications are due by the end of the day on November 10th.

Asbury Man Arrested On Assault Charge

An Asbury man was arrested over the weekend, after he allegedly threatened a 10 year old girl with a knife. 51 year old John Ryan was arrested Sunday night and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, 4th degree theft and violation of a no contact order. Dubuque County  sheriff’s deputies went to a home in Asbury to investigate a report of a disturbance. When they arrived a young girl told them that Ryan held a knife to her fingers and threatened her.

Darlington Safe Drinking Water Funding

The City of Darlington is an applicant for funding through the Safe Drinking Water Loan Program to improve the public drinking water system. The project primarily includes the replacement of existing deficient  water mains and associated fixtures. The SDWLP has determined that the project will not result in significant adverse environmental effects and no further environmental review or analysis is needed before proceeding with funding the project. They are soliciting public comments regarding this decision and potential environmental impacts of this project. Written or verbal comments are encouraged by October 21st. Provide comments to Kevin Olson, Community Financial Assistance, Department of Natural Resources, CF/2 101 S Webster St. PO Box 7921, Madison WI 53707, 608-266-9955 by Oct. 21, 2020. Based on the comments received, the SDWLP may prepare an environmental analysis before proceeding with the funding process.

Grand River To Build Dialysis Center In WI.

The Grand River Medical Group, based in Dubuque has announced plans to construct a new dialysis Unit and Nephrology Clinic in Richland Center. Nephrologist  Dr. David Ringold says the clinic will be open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and will provide hemodialysis services to 20 patients, with room for growth. Grand River CEO Justin Hafner says expanding their footprint further into Wisconsin is in line with part of their goal and mission, and that is to providing health care to some of the most vulnerable patients in Richland Center. Grand River currently has dialysis units in Dubuque, Manchester and Platteville. Dr. Ringold says the goal is to eventually take care of every dialysis patient in the region. A groundbreaking ceremony for the new clinic will be held in the next few weeks, with construction starting later this fall. The new unit is expected to be up and running around March of next year.

New Dubuque City Clerk

Dubuque will have a new city clerk at the end of the month. The city council has hired Adrienne Breitfelder to replace Kevin Firnstahl who is retiring on October 30th after nearly ten years as city clerk. Firnstahl has been with the city for over 21 years. The city clerk is the custodian of official records for the city council, which includes preparing, maintaining and attesting to the official records of actions taken by the council in regular and special meetings. Breitfelder holds a bachelor’s degree in political science with minors in communications and information technology from the University of North Carolina. She has been employed by IBM in Dubuque since 2013 and is currently program manager. Her hiring followed a search and interview process. She’ll officially begin her new duties on October 22nd.

Christmas Toy Shop Sign Up

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Salvation Army of Dubuque is going online this year for its’ annual Christmas Assistance for low-income households. Captain Emily Phelps says registration is under way now and will run through November 12th, or until all available spots are filled. After registering, people who sign up for Christmas toys will have an opportunity to choose an appointment time to come to the Salvation Army and pick out the toys. There will be a limited amount of families allowed inside the building when the toys are distributed. Distribution of toys will start on November 30th and run through the first three weeks of December. Captain Emily says they really had to rethink how they were going to operate the toy shop this year. For people who are signing up for Christmas food will also register online and will receive a voucher through the mail. Captain Emily says they typically serve between 400 and 450 families every year.

Dubuque Arboretum Fall Clean-Up

The Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens is holding a pair of Saturday community-wide clean-up days this month. The annual event will take place on October 24th and 31st from 9 am – Noon. Lunch will be provided outdoors for all volunteers both days. You are asked to wear a mask during sign-in and to bring your own rake and gloves but the Arboretum can provide some rakes, if needed. For more details, got to their Facebook page.

Car Bursts Into Flames After Accident

A Benton man is facing multiple charges after he crashed his vehicle and it blew up early Sunday morning. Benton Fire and First Response and Cuba City EMS responded to CTH H, Benton Township for a one vehicle accident around 2:43 am. 26-year old Brandon Lyne was traveling northbound when he failed to negotiate a curve, entered the ditch and struck a utility pole. The vehicle than burst into flames, causing severe damage. Lyne was cited for Hit and Run, operate a Motor Vehicle without Insurance, Failure to Notify Police of an Accident, Deviation from Designated Lane, and Failure to Keep Vehicle Under Control.


Crash In Dubuque Sends 2 To the Hospital

A two vehicle crash in Dubuque Thursday afternoon sent two people to the hospital. According to a police report, a car driven by 60 year old Mona Houlihan of Dubuque was traveling down Ungs Street, when she ran the stop sign at the intersection of Ungs and Grandview and crashed into the side of a vehicle driven by 45 year old Tracy Copeland of Dubuque. Copeland and her passenger, 13 year old Camryn Copeland were transported to Mercy Hospital and treated for their injuries. Houlihan received minor injuries but was not transported. She was cited for failure to obey a stop or yield sign.

Data Shows Higher Infection Rates In Rural Areas

Dubuque County has started reporting COVID-19 data by zip code. That data shows higher percentages of the population in smaller towns have contracted the virus when compared to urban areas. For example data shows that in zip code 52001, which covers parts of Dubuque and Sageville, 3.8 percent of the population has been infected with the virus. On the other hand zip code 52046 covers Farley. That is a much smaller area, but 5.6 percent of the population has contracted the virus at some point. Public Health Specialist Mary Rose Corrigan tells our coverage partners at KCRG TV that people in rural towns cannot let their guard down. She says mayors in small towns could reconsider the option of implementing a face mask ordinance much like the one in place in the city of Dubuque. Corrigan says it is especially important that people follow safety guidelines because hospitalization rates in the county have increased 76 percent in the last month.

Dog Sought By City In Biting Incident

The Dubuque Health Department is trying to locate a dog that was involved in a biting incident Friday afternoon. It happened at around 2:30 in the area of Flora Park, near the Skate Park. The animal is described as a male black and white pit bull terrier or pit bull mix. The dog was wearing a collar with tags. One tag is shaped like a bone. The health department needs to verify the dog’s health and vaccination history. If you have any information contact the health department or the Dubuque Law Enforcement Center.

High Court Will Not Hear Appeal From Convicted Killer

The Iowa Supreme Court has ruled that it will not hear an appeal from a former Dubuque man, who was convicted in a fatal stabbing outside a Dubuque bar over 13 years ago. Kenyatta Hariston, now 52, was convicted of second degree murder in the stabbing death of Nicolas Blackburn. Hariston is now serving a 50 year prison sentence. Hariston had earlier sought a second post conviction relief from the Iowa Court of Appeals, but was denied again.

Jo Daviess Fatal Motorcycle Accident

A Prophetstown, IL man suffered fatal injuries after he lost control of his motorcycle Saturday afternoon. Around 5:03 pm, the Jo Daviess County 911 Center received a report of a single motorcycle traffic accident with injuries near 4407 E. Massbach Rd, rural Elizabeth. Upon arrival, responding Deputies learned a motorcycle, driven by 54-year old Rodney Phelps of had been traveling south on Massbach Rd. While attempting to negotiate a sharp curve, the motorcycle left the roadway, coming to rest near a driveway/culvert. Phelps was pronounced deceased at the scene.  The accident remains under investigation.

Loras Closure from Bluff to Cornell St.

The partial closure of Loras Blvd. has been extended to Wednesday evening. Loras Blvd will be closed between Bluff Street and Cornell Street for water main work now through around 5 pm on Wednesday, depending on weather. Westbound traffic will be detoured onto Bluff, to W 9th Street, to University Ave, to Alta Vista Street, to Loras Blvd. Eastbound traffic will be detoured onto Alta Vista, to Kirkwood Street, to W Locust Street, to Bluff Street.

Heritage Trail Section to Close

Effective Monday, a section of the Heritage Trail will be closed to replace bridge number two. Bridge number two is located between Rupp Hollow Road and Clay Hill Road. The  Dubuque County Conservation Board reports construction is estimated to not exceed two months.

Loras Closed from Bluff to Cornell St

Loras Blvd will be closed between Bluff Street and Cornell Street for water main work now through 5 pm on Monday, weather permitting. Westbound traffic will be detoured onto Bluff, to W 9th Street, to University Ave, to Alta Vista Street, to Loras Blvd. Eastbound traffic will be detoured onto Alta Vista, to Kirkwood Street, to W Locust Street, to Bluff Street.

Darlington Trick-or-Treating

The City of Darlington will be permitting traditional trick-or-treating on Halloween day from 4 – 5:30 pm. The common council voted to leave the decision of whether or not children should participate up to their parents. The CDC and Wisconsin Department of Health Services want parents to know traditional trick-or-treating is considered a high risk activity for the spread of COVID-19 and they recommend taking precautions, including not participating in any way if you have COVID-19 symptoms. Other recommendations include wearing a mask and staying six feet away from other groups of trick-or-treaters, only trick-or-treat with family, and avoid using a bowl to hand out treats so kids don’t have to rummage through it. Consider other techniques like placing treats out on a table.

Time To Sign Up For LIHEAP

Elderly and disabled residents in Dubuque, Jackson, Jones and Delaware counties can now sign up for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program. The program helps people pay a portion of their utility bill. For years, the program was administered through Operation New View, but because of a recent merger with Hawkeye Area Community Action Program, or HACAP, the LIHEAP program is now being handled by HACAP, which is based in Hiawatha. HACAP communications and volunteers manager Chris Ackman says people will still be able to apply for the program where they have in the past, but because of COVID-19, applications will have to be downloaded at hacap.org. When an application is turned in, it must be accompanied with copies of social security cards for everyone in your household as well as copies of utility bills and proof of income. If you don’t have access to a computer, you can call HACAP. Ackman says after November 1st, all other households can apply for LIHEAP through April 30th.

Dubuque Woman Charged With Assault

A  Dubuque woman was arrested early Thursday morning after police say she tried to stab her boyfriend with a knife. 67 year old Kathyrn Green is charged with domestic assault-display or use of a weapon and possession of a weapon in a correctional facility. The incident took place at Green’s home in the 2200 block of Central Avenue. Green’s boyfriends told police that she accused him of cheating. She then allegedly pushed him against a couch and tried to stab him with a large kitchen knife. The boyfriend was not injured, but officers say his shirt had a cut mark on it, which was consistent with a knife. When Green was arrested, police found a steak knife in her purse. Once she was at the law enforcement center to be booked, police found another knife in her bra.

Work Continues On Gas Main On Loras

Crews from Black Hills Energy continue to work to replace a natural gas main on Loras Blvd. The gas main, located between Montrose Terrace and Bluff Street was ruptured on September 28th by a construction crew from Price Electric. That caused a major gas leak, which later ignited and blew up a building in the 400 block of Loras and damaged a number of surrounding structures. Fortunately no one was seriously injured or killed, although one fire fighter suffered a cut to his hand. The gas main provides service to Black Hills Energy customers in the area. The company anticipates that service will be restored by the first half of next week. Once natural gas service is restored, additional concrete work will begin.

Drug Bust and Child Endangerment

Two people from Hanover, Illinois are facing multiple charges following an arrest Wednesday morning. The Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Office reports 38-year old Shannon Bertucci and 21-year old Gavin Carter are charged with Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine, Unlawful Possession of Hypodermic Syringe/Needle, and two counts of Endangering the Health of a Child, among other charges.  This incident remains under investigation and further charges may be forthcoming.

Dubuque Man Charged After Threatening To Shoot Girlfriend

A Dubuque man faces over a half dozen charges after he threatened to shoot his girlfriend and her roommate this past weekend. The incident took place inside Aitchison Hall on the University of Dubuque campus Saturday afternoon. 27 year old Demetrius Woods- McKissick faces eight charges ranging from intimidation with a dangerous weapon to domestic assault with strangulation. Court records say Woods-McKissick had held his girlfriend at his residence against her will during the early morning hours of Saturday and at some point choked her for about 10 to 15 seconds. She was able to leave after he passed out. Later Woods-McKissick went to her dorm room and threatened her and her roommate with a handgun. He then pushed his girlfriend and left the room. Police watched campus surveillance footage of Woods-McKissick going to the room with what appeared to be a handgun, and then leaving about ten minutes later.

Dubuque Man Charged With Enticing A Minor

A  Dubuque man faces several charges for allegedly attempting to entice a minor into having sex with him. Delaware County sheriff’s deputies arrested 31 year old Joshua Shaw this week. He is charged with enticing a minor under 13, sexual abuse or exploitation and two counts of telephone dissemination of obscene material to a minor. In November of last year, authorities say Shaw had a text conversation with a girl younger than 13 and asked her to get a ride from Manchester to Dubuque so that he could have sex with her.

Apartment Fire In Dubuque Displaces Residents

At least four people are without a place to live, after a fire damaged the apartment that they occupied in Dubuque early this morning. Crews responded to a report of a fire in the basement of an apartment building in the 1400 block of Montrose Terrace just before 6. Crews were able to quickly put out the fire. The people living in the apartment where the fire started were displaced. The other units sustained some smoke damage. No injuries were reported. The fire forced authorities to close a portion of Loras Blvd. for about two and a half hours. It has since reopened. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Open Closet Koats for Kids

A local non-profit is asking help from the public for Koats for Kids. Almost Home’s Open Closet is asking people to drop off coats at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 1276 White Street, now through October 21st from 9:30 am-12:30 pm, weekdays only. Coats must be in good condition, gently used or new, with working zippers, with an emphasis on elementary school age sizes. No wool coats accepted. Cash donations will be used to purchase coats. The Open Closet is open to the public in need—men, women and children of all ages. Items are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis—completely free of charge.

Convicted Sex Offender Charged With Rape

A convicted Dubuque County sex offender now faces a rape charge. 30 year old Brice Heinze of Peosta was arrested over the weekend and charged with 3rd degree sexual abuse-forcible rape. Court records say that in August Heinze physically and sexually assaulted a woman he knew. In 2014 Heinze was convicted in Clayton County of 3rd degree sexual abuse and his name is on the state’s sex offender registry.

Three Injured In Two Vehicle Collision In Lafayette Co.

Three people were injured after the car they were riding in was struck by another vehicle Saturday afternoon in Lafayette County. The accident happened a few minutes before 12:30 at the intersection of Highways 23 and 81. Authorities say 43 year old Tamara Kieffer of Darlington was traveling south on 23, when a vehicle driven by 19 year old Gavin Klocke of Monroe failed to yield the right-of-way at the intersection and crashed into Kieffer’s car. Kieffer and two children in the car were transported to Memorial Hospital. Klocke was evaluated at the scene and released. Charges are pending and the accident remains under investigation.

Crash In Lafayette County Injures One

A Shullsburg woman was injured after she rolled her car in Lafayette County Monday afternoon. The accident happened at around 4:15 on Wisconsin 11 in Shullsburg Township. 28 year old Hali Smith told deputies she was driving east on 11, when she fell asleep at the wheel. The car left the road and overturned. Smith was taken to a local hospital and treated for her injuries.

Katrina Adams To Keynote Conference

The first African American female pro tennis player and youngest person ever to serve as President of the United States Tennis Association will be the keynote speaker for this year’s Women Lead Change All-Virtual Dubuque Conference. The conference will be held on Thursday and is being sponsored by MidwestOne Bank. Conference chair Lynne Hager says katrina Adams is a great fit for their event and she’ll have a message worth listening to. This is year number six that the conference is being held in Dubuque. The conference will also feature Cy Wakeman, reality-based leadership author and expert and Stacey Hanke, communications author and speaker.

Loras Blvd. Structure Fire

Authorities are advising residents to avoid Loras Blvd. which is currently closed from Prairie Street to Bluff Street due to a structure fire. The Dubuque Fire Dept. is on scene and it’s anticipated it may be closed for a few hours. No traffic is being allowed through so plan to use alternative routes and avoid the area as possible.

Clarke University Coronavirus Relief Grant

Clarke University is one of 65 recipients of the Coronavirus Relief Employer Innovation Fund Grant. Clarke University will utilize this grant in partnership with Four Mounds, Fountain of Youth, and the Crescent Community Health Center in Dubuque to offer free, non-credit, postsecondary micro courses to 60 underserved Iowans who are currently unemployed, underemployed, or would like to pivot careers as a result of their educational attainment or the pandemic. These courses will be offered through Clarke’s CareerPLUS program.

Dubuque Trick-or-Treat Decision

The Dubuque City Council decided Monday night to leave the trick-or-treat decisions to each family, but they are encouraging people to play it safe. Mayor Roy Buol proclaimed this year’s Halloween night as “Physically Distanced, COVID-19 Safe, Trick-or-Treat Night” at Monday night’s City Council meeting. City council members agreed they were dreading having to potentially cancel trick-or-treating in Dubuque, so they are leaving Halloween festivities to each person’s best judgment but they are recommending people steer clear of certain activities. By that, they mean people should avoid hand-distributed treats as well as trick-or-treating with people from outside their household. Instead, they recommend low-risk activities. Those include pumpkin carving, decorating houses, and a Halloween movie night with those who live with you. The city is also recommending moderate-risk activities, which include no-contact grab-and-go treats. Trick or treating is scheduled for Saturday, October 31 from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. City officials are encouraging people to socially distance and wear masks.

Dubuque County Early Voting

244 Dubuque County voters cast their General Election ballots Monday, the first day to vote in-person for the November 3rd election, according to Denise Dolan, Dubuque County Commissioner of Elections. The Dubuque County Elections office mailed 23,738 ballots on Monday. The Election Annex, 75 Locust Street, and the Election Office, 4th Floor of the Court House, are open for registering to vote and early voting from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm., Monday through Friday. To request to receive an early voting ballot by mail,  obtain a request form at www.dubuquecountyiowa.gov/190/Absentee-Voting or contact the Election Office at 563-589-4457. The deadline to request a ballot be mailed is 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 24th.

Carnegie-Stout Public Library Expanded Hours

Effective today, Carnegie-Stout Public Library will offer expanded hours. The new hours are Monday – Thursday 10 am – 7 pm, Friday and Saturday 10 am – 5 pm, and Sunday 1 pm – 5 pm. The Library will continue to offer curbside service seven days a week, Monday – Friday 10 am – Noon and Saturday and Sunday Noon – 2 pm.

Prescott Elementary DB & T Donation

Prescott Elementary School staff were surprised this morning with a $20,000 donation from Dubuque Bank and Trust. The donation was made at a special virtual staff meeting.  Lynn “Tut” Fuller, President and CEO of Dubuque Bank and Trust, says K-12 schools are the cornerstone to a healthy and productive community and they want to play their part to help. Vicki Sullivan, principal of Prescott Elementary School says they look forward to determining how to spend the funds to maximize the benefit to their students and school community. School Board member, Nancy Bradley, thanked DB & T and noted their long partnership with the school. The funds are intended for the school to purchase much-needed tools and materials, so they can successfully and safely continue to operate, whether students are learning in the classroom or remotely from their homes.

Cuba City Plaza Project

Cuba City recently received funding to develop a downtown plaza that it hopes will attract more people to the city. The plaza is being developed around the Caboose in the Presidential Courtyard along Main Street. The city applied for and received a $16,000 grant through the AARP’ Community Challenge Grant Program and another $5,000 was donated by the City of Presidents Committee. Committee President Donna Rodgers says they solicited the help of students from UW-Platteville who came up with some ideas for the plaza, which include a mural and more green space. Rodgers says they hope to attract day trippers from surrounding areas once the plaza is completed. The city conducted a survey of high school students who say they just want a place to hang out, and Rodgers says the plaza will be the perfect place. Rodgers says in addition to developing a plaza, they would also like to build a Presidential Museum somewhere down the road. If you’d like to donate money for the Presidential Museum, visit the Cuba City website, or you can drop your check off at city hall.

Some Dubuquers Discarding Masks

A mandatory mask mandate is currently in effect in Dubuque, and while the majority of people are wearing them, some are discarding their masks on lawns, sidewalks and streets throughout the city. Mayor Roy Buol says it’s just unfortunate that some people refuse to accept or recognize the mask mandate. Buol says it’s sad that some people would throw away face masks that have been scientifically proven to reduce the spread of COVID during a worldwide pandemic. The decision to lift the mandate will be made by the city council, but until then Buol says they will continue to listen to the medical professionals. Last month, the group Unmask Dubuque presented a petition to the council that call for an immediate removal of the mandate, but the council voted to keep the mandate in place. If you are caught not wearing a mask when it’s appropriate, you will be cited by police and fined ten dollars.

Hills & Dales Pumpkin Decorating Contest

Hills & Dales is partnering with Kennedy Mall to host a new Pumpkin Decorating Contest this year. This event is free and open to the public who are invited to decorate a pumpkin and bring it to Kennedy Mall between October 11 – 14. Pumpkins will be displayed at the mall, and pictures will also be posted on Facebook for public voting. The pumpkin with the most ‘likes’/reactions on Facebook will win a $200 prize package. Full details and instructions can be found online at hillsdales.org under News & Events and then Press Releases or their Facebook page. This pumpkin decorating contest replaces the previously-held Halloween Harvest trick-or-treat event due to the pandemic.



Free COVID Testing in Fennimore

There will be free COVID-19 testing open to the general public on Wednesday, October 7th, from 10 am-5:30 pm in Fennimore at the SWTC Public Safety Complex Driving Track. Appointments are not required, but Grant County Emergency Management requests that all visitors pre-register at register.covidconnect.wi.gov. Testing is open to anyone (age 5+) who feels they have a need to be tested.

East Dubuque School Bus Crash

Three East Dubuque students were injured Thursday evening after a school bus crash. At 6:12 p.m. Ogle County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to Illinois Rte. 64 and Illinois Rte 26 and it was determined that an East Dubuque School District Bus driven by 74- year old Melvin Ehrler of East Dubuque was traveling West on Illinois Rte 64 and failed to stop at the stop sign at Illinois Rte. 26. The Bus traveled approximately 423 feet into a grass field and came to a stop. 11 minors were on the bus at the time of the crash and three were transported to area hospitals for minor injuries. Ehrler was issued citations for Disregarding a Traffic Control Device, and Failure to Reduce Speed to Avoid an Accident. The crash remains under investigation.

Fire Destroys Shed In Dubuque County

Fire destroyed a shed in Dubuque County Wednesday afternoon. The shed is located just north of Sherrill in the 16000 block of Balltown Road and was reported at about 2 o’clock. It contained tools, farm equipment, and bales of hay. Fire crews from several surrounding cities helped to put out the fire. Damage is estimated at more than 32 thousand dollars. The shed is owned by Mark Behnke. No injuries were reported.

Early Voting Starts Monday In Dubuque County

Eligible voters in Dubuque County can start voting in-person early beginning Monday. Deputy Commissioner of Elections Jenny Hillary says there are a couple of locations where voters can cast their early vote.  One is at the Election Annex on Locust Street, or at the election office on the 4th floor of the courthouse. She says also on Monday they’ll begin mailing out around 22,000 ballots to voters who requested them and want to vote by mail. The Election Office has purchased a new ballot drop box for voters wanting to deliver their ballots. On November 2nd, both the Election Office and the Annex will be open until 5 pm for last minute in-person voting.


Community Foundation Data Walk

The Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque’s third annual data walk on Tuesday, October 6th will bring together local leaders to explore ways in which Dubuque-area residents face barriers to success as well as opportunities to help people succeed. Due to COVID-19, this year’s data walk will be held virtually. Via Zoom, the Community Foundation will share displays that focus on important community indicators, including the COVID-19 outbreak and community response and racial equity in areas like academic achievement, the criminal justice system and housing. Attendees will have the opportunity to view the displays on a new website while posting online comments and interacting through a Zoom conference. Advance registration is required, and community leaders from the nonprofit, government, civic, social service and education sectors are invited to attend this free event. Visit dbqfoundation.org/DataWalk2020 for more information.

Race in the Heartland

The second annual Race in the Heartland Conference will take place on October 8th and 9th. The conference is centered on race and equity. Conference Organizer Miquel Jackson, Vice President of the Dubuque NAACP and Human Rights Commissioner, says the conference will contain multiple keynote speakers and breakout sessions, all of which are presented by women. Due to COVID-19, the entire 2020 conference will occur virtually via Zoom. Jackson says the speakers will focus on four key topics:  housing, education, criminal justice, and the workplace. Due to COVID-19, the entire 2020 conference will occur virtually via Zoom. Keynote speakers include Dr. Jennifer Ulie-Wells and Manisha Paudel, a former member of the Dubuque Human Rights Department. Dr. Ulie-Wells trains thousands of educators, young people, families, and community providers on a variety of school mental health topics. For more information on cost and how to connect to the Zoom event, go to raceintheheartland.org or like Race in the Heartland on Facebook.





Loras Blvd. Now Open

Loras Blvd., between Bluff and Dell Streets, is now open to motorists and pedestrians. All of the signage was removed at around 2 pm Wednesday afternoon. That portion of Loras was closed Monday night after the house at 429 Loras exploded from a major gas leak. More than 50 people were displaced. Most of them are staying at hotels throughout the city courtesy of the American Red Cross. Fortunately no one was killed in the blast that blew out windows in neighboring properties and caused significant damage to others. One fire fighter was cut on his hand while fighting the blaze. The state fire marshal’s office, local authorities and Black Hills Energy are working to determine why the explosion happened.

Dubuque Fire Department Receives Award

The American Heart Association has awarded the Dubuque Fire Department with its’ 2020 Mission: Lifeline EMS Gold Plus Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks. Mission: Lifeline’s program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

Newt Marine Gets Habitat Restoration Contract

A  Dubuque based company has been awarded a contract to build a habitat restoration project on the Mississippi. The St. Paul District of the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers says Newt Marine Service will construct the 8.8 million dollar project in the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge close to Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.  The project, which is scheduled to start next spring, is being done to restore eroding peninsulas around McGregor Lake and dredge backwater fish habitat. It will also enhance forest habitat in the flood plain.

Statewide Alert For Dangerous Person

Wisconsin authorities have issued a statewide alert for a person they say is armed and dangerous. The alert was put out Tuesday morning by the Muscoda police department. Police say someone, who was wearing body armor and carrying an assault weapon, stole a truck from Allied Ready Mix Company. The truck is a 2004 maroon Chevy with license plate number 309548F. If you have any information, you are asked to call 911 or the Muscoda police department at 608-739-3144.

SW Wisconsin Man Killed In Head-On Crash

A southwest Wisconsin man was killed in a head-on collision in Iowa County over the weekend. According to the Wisconsin State Patrol, a vehicle driven by 83 year old Jerry Studnicka of Cobb was traveling east on U.S. Highway 18, near Dodgeville just before 11:30 Saturday afternoon, when he crossed the centerline and crashed head-on into a vehicle driven by 36 year old  Karri Calvert of Monfort. The impact caused Studnicka’s vehicle to catch fire. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Calvert received non-life threatening injuries.

Enhancing Excellence Luncheon

The 8th annual “Enhancing Excellence Luncheon” will take place this morning, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s event, like many other fundraisers since the pandemic hit, will be held live online. The luncheon is a fundraiser for the Foundation for Dubuque Public Schools. Executive Director Amy Unmacht says the luncheon will be similar to the ones they’ve had in the past, but in this case, virtually. Unmacht will give an update on the funding that is lacking in areas that donors can support. The luncheon typically raises around $40,000 and supports the foundation’s operating budget as well as projects and programs throughout the year. Dubuque superintendent Stan Rheingans will also address the luncheon virtually,which starts at 11:30. The public is invited to join in by visiting dbqschools.org/fdps-luncheon, or follow them on their website or Facebook for up to date information.



Iowa Relaxes Quarantine Guidance

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds has announced a policy change to make it easier for students, teachers and business workers exposed to an infected person to avoid a two week quarantine, despite a surge in cases throughout the state. State Public Health Medical Director Dr. Caitlin Pedati says under new guidance, children in daycares and schools and workers do not have to quarantine as long as they and the infected person with whom they were in contact were consistently and correctly wearing face coverings. But she says they will still be required to self-monitor, which means wearing a face covering and keeping a close eye on symptoms. Only the infected person must go into isolation, while the close contacts should monitor their health. The change breaks with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance, which recommends a 14-day quarantine for anyone who is in close contact with someone who has tested positive regardless of mask use.

UPDATE: Loras Blvd. To Be Closed Through Today After House Explodes

A portion of Loras Blvd. where a house exploded Monday evening will likely be closed at least until tomorrow. A number of structures surrounding the building that once stood at 429 Loras, had their windows blown out in the explosion, which was caused by a large gas leak. Those properties will have to be deemed structurally sound and safe and then secured by the owners before the street completely reopens. The explosion left more than 50 people homeless. Some were able to stay with family and friends but, the majority of them have been put up in hotels with assistance from the American Red Cross. One fire fighter suffered a cut on his hand. Authorities say the explosion happened as crews from Black Hills Energy were capping off the leak, which was reported at around 4:15 Monday afternoon. The explosion occurred at around an hour-and-half later. No damage estimate is available yet and the investigation continues.

YMCA Glimmer of Hope

The Dubuque Community YMCA/YWCA is presenting their 15th annual Glimmer of Hope fundraiser October 1st – 8th and it coincides with the start of domestic violence awareness month. Danielle Shea, Director of Marketing & Communications, says proceeds from the event help fund their Victim Services Shelter. Over the past year, Shea says the shelter has served nearly 100 community members. The Y will host a candlelight vigil in Washington Park on Thursday to start the Week of Glimmer events. On October 6th, there will be an “Ask the Experts” event where community members will be able to ask a panel of guest speakers questions about domestic violence, human trafficking, and sexual assault. For more information about Glimmer of Hope, go to dubuquey.org or visit their Facebook page.

Loras U.S. News Best Colleges Ranking

Loras College was recently named the 16th Best Regional College in the Midwest – a 12-state region – according to the 2021 U.S. News Best Colleges rankings. Loras also ranked tenth in Best Value and was one of three schools in Iowa to make the Best Undergraduate Engineering Program list. The 2021 U.S News ranking includes data on nearly 1,452 colleges and universities. Eligible schools are ranked on academic excellence, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving.

UPDATE: Structure Explosion On Loras Blvd.

Fire crews, emergency personnel and police remain on the scene of a structure that was leveled by an explosion in the 400 block of Loras Blvd. late this afternoon. The area is blocked off from motorists and people are being told to stay away from the area. It started with a large gas leak caused by a construction crew that hit a gas main that was reported at around 4:15 this afternoon. The explosion happened at around 5:45 and was so powerful it could be felt inside dorm room at Loras College. It also shook and damaged nearby structures. Fire crews were inspecting other buildings in the area for damage. One home was evacuated when the gas leak was first reported.  One fire fighter suffered a non-life threatening injury. Dubuque public information officer Randy Gehl says people who were displaced by the explosion are being asked to go to Jackson Park, where volunteers with the American Red Cross will assist them. It’s not known how long the area will be sealed off.

House Explosion

An explosion destroyed a building and shook several others Monday night in Dubuque. It happened in the 400 block of Loras Boulevard, shortly after 4:00 p.m. Chief Rick Steines with the Dubuque Fire Department says a gas leak caused the explosion. He says they were called a little after 4:00 p.m. for the leak, which he says was caused by a machine that struck a gas main while working in the area. According to Chief Steines, they evacuated the closest house while they waited for the gas company to arrive. Steines says the gas company was in the process of shutting down the gas when it ignited and caused the explosion. One house was destroyed and others had windows blown out. The chief says there was one injury: a firefighter went to the hospital for a cut. As of Tuesday morning, Loras Boulevard remains closed between Chestnut and Bluff Street.


Kwik Stop Fuel 4 Schools

Kwik Stop has once again partnered with four local schools in a convenient way to support them financially. Heather Hamm, Kwik Care Community Liaison, says the schools include Hempstead High School, Dubuque Senior High School, Holy Family Catholic Schools, and Western Dubuque High School. Hamm says school has their own special pump at a nearby Kwik Stop and every gallon pumped at the 4-student designed pumps earn $.02 / gallon donated back to the respective schools. Fuel 4 Schools runs throughout the 2020/2021 school year.