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Dubuque & Tri-State News

Florida Man Sentenced For Sex Abuse In Dubuque County

A sexual abuse case involving an Asbury girl over a decade ago has resulted in a prison sentence for a Florida man. 45 year old Brady Nelson of Coral Springs earlier pleaded guilty to lascivious acts with a child and assault with intent to commit sexual abuse. He  was sentenced to 7 years behind bars. A charge of second degree sexual abuse was dropped as part of a plea deal with the county attorney’s office. The girl, who is now in her teens was younger than 8 when the abuse took place between 2007 and 2010. When he is released, Nelson must register as a sex offender.

Loras Students Can Learn In-Person/Online

Classes are scheduled to resume at Loras College in the fall, but this year will be different from typical academic years. Because of COVID-19, students will have the choice to learn in-person or online. A hybrid teaching model called “Loras Flex This Fall” will provide a combination of in-person and online learning that will both accommodate students who choose to be on campus and those who choose to learn exclusively online. Students can study and live on campus or commute to classes or take classes online. Loras’ academic calendar has also been modified for the upcoming school year.  Fall semester classes will start on August 26th and run through November 20th, just before the Thanksgiving holiday break. The last week of classes and final examines will be held online. Social distancing will be practiced during in-person learning.

Dubuque County Friday COVID-19 Update

There have been 3 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours, bringing the county’s total to 378. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Wednesday afternoon, 6,551 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive rate of 5.7 percent.

Kwik Care “Gallons for the Community” Grant

Locally owned Kwik Stop, Dairy Queen, and Fazolis are offering all locally-owned small businesses in the community the opportunity to apply for their Kwik Care “Gallons for the Community” Local Business Grant. Each Kwik Stop location in Dubuque, Peosta, and Delhi will have a designated pump where 2 cents for every gallon pumped out in June, July, and August will be compiled and split equally between the selected businesses. Local businesses are encouraged to complete the Kwik Care “Gallons for the Community” grant application at https://gokwikstop.com/kwik-care-grant/ and submit before noon on June 15th. The selected businesses will be announced June 19th.

Dubuque Credit Union To Close

A credit union in Dubuque that has been closed since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the area in mid-March will not be reopening. Officials with Alliant Credit Union says its’ branch office inside MercyOne Medical Center on Mercy Drive is now closed permanently. Alliant’s other two branches on White Street and Associates Drive will continue to offer services. Alliant is also closing one of its’ two branch locations in Cedar Rapids. The company says the reason for the closings is that more of its’ members are now utilizing their electronic banking services as opposed to going to a physical location to do their business.

Mussels To Be Released Into Bee Branch

The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in cooperation with several partners will be releasing 25-hundred young freshwater mussels into the Upper Bee Branch Creek today. It’s all part of a state water quality improvement program and species restoration. Jared McGovern, river museum curator says the hope is that eventually mussels and other aquatic animals will populate the creek naturally. The mussels will be split into two groups. The first group will be placed in mussel rearing silos to track their growth and compare their growth to different water quality measurements collected throughout the summer. The rest of the mussels will be placed in pockets of 500 throughout the remainder of the Bee Branch. Young people from St. Mark Youth Enrichment and the Multicultural Family Center will be the first official “Beekeepers” who will take part in watershed stewardship programming. McGovern stresses that because of the coronavirus pandemic there won’t be a huge gathering of people when the mussels are released. He says the event will start at the Bee Branch location on 22nd Street at around noon. The releasing of the mussels will take about three hours.

Dubuque County Thursday COVID-19 Update

There has been 1 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours, putting the county’s total at 373. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Tuesday afternoon, 6,460 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive rate of 5.8 percent.

Dubuque Man/Teen Charged With Burglary

A Dubuque man faces a burglary charge after police say he and a teenager conspired to break into a business in Dubuque early Tuesday morning. 20 year old Brenden Tarrence is charged with second degree burglary and possession of drug paraphernalia. A police report says that at around 1:45 officers were called to Beecher’s Beverage on Asbury Road to investigate a report of a break-in at the business. Police reviewed store surveillance video, which showed a person removing an exterior camera on the property, before breaking a window to gain access. The burglar took alcohol and tobacco products, before he was chased by an employee as he fled to a nearby car with a person inside who drove him away. Police found a hammer and blood at the scene of the crime. The suspect vehicle was later located in the 1,800 block of Loras Blvd near the home of Tarrence. Some of the stolen items were found inside the car. A search warrant was executed at Tarrence’s residence, where police found more items along with a hammer and a sweatshirt and tennis shoes with blood on them. The teenager has not been formally charged.

50 percent Capacity Lifted

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has announced that she’s lifting the 50 percent capacity restriction for some businesses effective Friday at 8 a.m. Reynolds said certain businesses such as restaurants, bars and theaters will no longer have to adhere to the 50 percent capacity restriction, but will still need to maintain the 6-feet social distancing requirement. She also said establishments will need to implement reasonable measures to ensure social distancing, increase hygiene practices and other public health measures to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. Swimming pools, salons and tattoo parlors may also open under the same guidelines. Senior centers and adult day care programs may also open if they comply with specific guidance from the department of public health.

Asbury’s Music in the Park Festival Cancelled

Asbury’s 2020 Music in the Park Festival has been canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Organizers say board members of the Asbury Area Civic and Recreational Foundation voted unanimously to cancel the event, which had been scheduled for July 11th. Sushi Roll, a Chicago-area cover band and this year’s headliner, has been secured for next summer’s festival – currently scheduled for July 10th, 2021.

Summer Break Day Camps

Day campers in the Tri-State area are being invited to the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium facility on June 22nd for the first Summer Break Day Camp of the season. Officials made adjustments to the schedule and camp offerings to ensure proper health and safety measures. The changes include camps that will be limited to 12 young people and they must have their temperature taken prior to going to camp each day. This year’s camps are being offered in an all-day format from 9 am to 4. A revised list of summer camps along with registration forms can be found at rivermuseum.com/summercamps.

Dubuque County Wednesday COVID-19 Update

There have been no additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County since Tuesday afternoon so the county’s total remains at 372. The county death total remains at 21. As of Tuesday afternoon, 6,327 Dubuque County residents have been tested, with a positive test rate of 5.9 percent. One in 15 Dubuque County residents have now been tested.

Dubuque Forum On COVID-19 Economic Impact

There’s no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a negative impact on the nation’s economy, and the Iowa Business Council is addressing the issue with a series of forums throughout the state. Today, the IBC will conduct its’ first Vision to Vitality forum of the year with the Dubuque community and business leaders to discuss steps towards recovery. IBC executive director Joe Murphy says COVID-19 has crippled a lot of small businesses and in some cases forced them to go out of business. Many of those mom-and-pop storefronts rely on their employees to stay afloat, but many of them no longer have a job. Murphy says the main focus of the forum will be how can the IBC help Iowans get back to work as soon as possible. The virtual forum panelists will consist of several community leaders, including Molly Grover with the chamber of commerce, Windy Mihm-Herold with business and community solutions at NICC, Kristin Dietzel with workforce solutions and Terry Kouba with Alliant Energy. The virtual event is free to attend and open to the public, and you can register right up until the start of the forum. The forum will be held between 3 and 4 pm today. Murphy says another issue that the IBC is taking the lead on is access to high speed broadband internet throughout the state.

Dubuque Community Schools Graduation

The Dupuque Community School District has announced they plan to move forward with holding graduation on Saturday, June 27, at Dalzell Field, pending any significant changes to the COVID-19 situation in our area. Hempstead’s graduation will be at 10 a.m. and Dubuque Senior’s will be at 3 p.m. Due to social distancing measures in place, each graduate will be limited to four tickets for family members/friends, who will be required to sit together at the event. The event will also be live-streamed for family and friends unable to attend. Complete safety protocols as well as door opening times and arrival procedures will be shared with families prior to the event.

Dupaco Platteville Expansion

Dupaco Community Credit Union plans to remodel and expand its current building in Platteville. The current 3,958 square foot building will be doubling its original footprint  after the expansion is complete. The expanded branch will deploy a service delivery technology featuring live video tellers which allows them to conduct real-time, face-to-face video transactions from a distance. Dupaco employees located at a central location in Dubuque will remotely operate the Platteville lobby and drive-through video teller machines. Construction is underway and Dupaco’s Platteville branch lobby will remain closed during construction and members will be directed through the drive-up for cash transactions. A temporary building, located next to the current Dupaco branch, will be available for appointments like loan closings, account openings and other face-to-face member services until the lobby reopens later this summer. The new retail space is expected to be completed in mid-2021.

Board Approves Return-To-Learn Plans

As expected the Dubuque School Board approved its’ “Return-To-Learn” plans Monday night as the district prepares to get students back into a learning environment over the next couple of months. The plans call for amending the 2020-2021 school calendar. The original calendar called for the first day of school to begin on August 24th. But classes will now start 10 days earlier on August 14th. District superintendent Stan Rheingans. He says the plans allow the district to have three required options available for students. They are fully-in person education, fully remote, or hybrid delivery, which is a combination of in-person and remote education.  Orientation for students in Pre-K through 5th and 6th through 9th will be held on August 13th, with all students back on the 14th. An amended school calendar for Western Dubuque would add 11 days to the calendar for next school year. Holy Family is currently working on plans that have not yet been finalized.

Dubuque County Tuesday COVID-19 Update

There have been 5 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours bringing the county’s total to 370. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Monday afternoon, 6,216 Dubuque County residents have been tested. One in 16 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

City Council Condemns Racism

The Dubuque City Council adopted a resolution Monday night to formally condemn racism in the community. Fourth Ward councilman, Brad Cavanagh, said one of the first steps will be to review and possibly reform the Dubuque Police Department’s use-of-force policies. Right now, the Dubuque City Council is made up of all white members, which is why Cavanagh said the city must make sure that people of other backgrounds are included in these conversations. Dereka Williams, one of the organizers of the protests and rallies against racial injustice in Dubuque, said some of the changes her team would like to see are eliminating racial profiling and more community policing. She said her team appreciates the council’s words and support, but that they need to be backed up by action. Cavanaugh said that many people will be involved in this process including Mayor Roy Buol, City Manager Michael Van Milligen, and Police Chief Mark Dalsing.

Lafayette County Motorcycle Crash

A motorcycle crash in Lafayette County Sunday afternoon sent one man to the hospital. It happened on State Highway 78 in Wiota Township at around 4:20. According to the sheriff’s office 54 year old James Killian of Stoughton was traveling north, when he came around a curve and lost control. The motorcycle drifted into the gravel and struck the embankment and a sign post. Killian was thrown from the cycle and landed in a ditch. He was transported to an area hospital to be treated.

Construction Zone Businesses

With nearly 20 constructions projects going on in Dubuque, including several in the downtown area, city officials recognize that businesses located in work zones have special needs. “Access To” signs are up to guide customers to businesses in the impacted area. A Road Construction Toolkit for Businesses is offered as a resource to download at www.cityofdubuque.org/detours. The Mayor and City Council have approved the creation of a new program to offer low interest loans for businesses negatively impacted by City construction projects. The loan pool should be available by July 1st.  For more information, contact Economic Development Director Jill Conners at 563-589-4213.

Dubuque County Monday COVID-19 Update

There have been 2 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours bringing the county’s total to 364. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Sunday afternoon, 6,062 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive test rate of 11.5 percent.  One in 16 Dubuque County residents have now been tested.

Motorcycle Injury Accident

A Monticello, WI man suffered injuries in a single vehicle accident Sunday. Around 8:52 pm, The Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Office received a report of an accident with injuries on North Cole Street about ¼ mile south of East State Line Road. Upon arrival, Deputies learned that 62-year old Thomas Zeal was operating a motorcycle north on Cole Street. Zeal crossed over the southbound lane, entered the ditch and rolled and was ejected from the motorcycle. Zeal was transported to UW-Madison Hospital by helicopter. Zeal has been charged with Failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident. This accident remains under investigation.

Dubuque County Sunday COVID-19 Update

There have been 4 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours bringing the county’s total to 362. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Saturday afternoon, 6,025 Dubuque County residents have been tested.  One in 16 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

MercyOne Cancer Center Opens

MercyOne Medical Center in Dubuque opened its new cancer center on last week. David Tatman, the cancer center’s executive director, said the idea behind it was to get patients all their care under one same roof. Some of the cancer care services in this new facility include oncology nurse navigation and spiritual care. Tatman tells our coverage partners, KCRG TV, they are hoping to start clinical trials soon. The center is located in a new 40,000 square foot, two-story facility at MercyOne in Dubuque.

Project Rooted Free Meals

A local non-profit has been providing 850 no cost lunches a day to the community. Whitney Sanger, President of Project Rooted, says, with the help of volunteers, they have over served 31,500 lunches in the past 10 weeks. Sanger says the program has really expanded due to the extra need with kids out of school. The food served is all healthy and homemade. Starting Monday, lunch will be served at Holy Ghost Catholic Church at 2921 Central Avenue from 11 am – 12:30 pm. Parents may drive through to pick-up lunch and breakfast for their children. Individuals 18 and under may walk-up to grab lunch and breakfast for the next day. For more information go to the Project Rooted Facebook page or email info@projectrooted.com.

Dubuque Man Sentenced For Child Pornography Possession


A Dubuque man, who authorities say was in possession of more than 25-thousand images of child pornography, has been sentenced to nearly 11 years in prison. 37 year old Mark Curtis Jr. pleaded guilty to one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of transportation of child pornography, both felonies. Prosecutors say between August of 2017 and August of 2018, Curtis used terms commonly associated with child porn to search for images and videos on the internet. He then downloaded those images to his cellphone and moved some of them to a Dropbox account. The collection of videos and images included children as young as infants and toddlers.

Jo Daviess County Fair Cancelled

Due to concerns about the coronavirus and the “Restore Illinois plan, the Jo Daviess County Fair Board has made the decision to cancel this summer’s Jo Daviess County Fair. On their social media post, they cite health and safety concerns for the community,  attendees, vendors, and volunteers. The fair was scheduled for July 30th-August 2nd.

Library Summer Reading Program

The Carnegie-Stout Public Library will begin its Summer Reading Program on Monday,   June 8th. The 2020 theme is “Imagine Your Story” and it will run through August 7th. The summer reading program is open to children, teens, and adults. Those interested in participating are encouraged to sign up via the library website at www.Dubuque.lib.ia.us. Due to current COVID-19 restrictions, in-person library programs are cancelled for the month of June, but there are other opportunities for people of all ages to engage with the library online and through its social media channels. These include virtual storytimes, live video programs, online book clubs, Zoom events, and more. Go to the “Programs & Events” tab on the bottom menu bar of the library website for additional details.

School Food Programs This Summer

Students in Dubuque’s public and parochial schools are being offered meals this summer. The Dubuque district is providing free breakfast and lunch to any child between the ages of 6 and 18 with no enrollment necessary. The “grab and go” meals can be picked up at Prescott Elementary and Roosevelt Middle School Monday through Friday between 11 am and 1 pm through July 31st. Holy Family is also offering free “grab and go” meals for kids 18 and under. Those meals can be picked up at Holy Ghost Catholic Church between 11 am and 12:30 pm Monday through Friday.

Jackson County Loan Program

There’s some good news for small businesses in Jackson County that have been severely impacted by the economic changes created by the COVID-19 pandemic. County officials have established the Jackson County Emergency Business Assistance Loan Program. The board of supervisors have allocated $50,000 to the program for eligible applicants to secure financing of up to $5,000 for a three year term. Matt Specht with East Central Governmental Association says it’s easy to apply for the new loan program. There will be no interest rate or fees charged to the qualifying applicant for the use of the funds for up to six months. After that period, the loan interest rate is 1 percent over the remaining two years and six months. The application deadline is June 15th.

Strut Your Mutt Location Change

The Dubuque Regional Humane Society has decided to move their 27th annual Strut Your Mutt on June 20th, from A.Y. McDonald Park to the Dubuque Regional Humane Society campus (4242 Chavenelle Road). The timeline of the event will remain the same with registration/check-in opening at 8 a.m. and the strut starting at 9 a.m. around the perimeter of their over four-mile campus. The usual aspects of Strut Your Mutt will be included like the agility equipment and doggie pools. You will also have a chance to tour the DRHS and meet their adoptable dogs, cats and critters.

Parking Meter Pilot Program

After being paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Dubuque’s 90-day pilot of new parking metering technology resumed on June 1st, and will continue through July 15th. The new technology is designed to provide additional conveniences for customers and will feature more payment options, license plate recognition, and the ability to select more precise time intervals. The pilot is being conducted at no cost to the City and will provide valuable data for evaluating wider deployment of a smart parking platform in Dubuque’s metered districts. The “smart” meters and kiosks display parking rates, hours, time limits, and other important information.

Dubuque County Friday COVID-19 Update

There have been 2 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours bringing the county’s total to 356. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Thursday afternoon, 5,890 Dubuque County residents have been tested. One in 16 Dubuque County residents have now been tested.

YMCA Phase 2 Re-opening

The Dubuque Community YMCA/YWCA has opened up more programs and areas in the wellness center as part of their Phase-2 re-opening plan. Danielle Shea, Director of Marketing & Communications, says they will have longer hours, select group exercise classes at the Y, and the opening of their Sky Tours Zipline. Shea says swim lessons kick off June 8th.  Summer camps will start June 15th and they will be following all the health guidelines to keep everyone safe. Some of the areas at the Y that are now open include family locker rooms, racquetball courts, wellness center with track area, weight room, and the large pool for lap swim only. Hot tub, saunas, whirlpool, and adult and youth locker rooms remain closed for now. For more information on the Phase 2 rules at the YMCA go to dubuquey.org.


Dubuque Wants Fair and Direct Financial Aid

Earlier this week the Dubuque city council adopted a resolution calling on Congress to provide “fair and direct financial aid” for cities and counties in the state, regardless of size. A federal stimulus package approved in March provided billions in local, state and tribal government aid, but that money only assisted cities and counties with populations of 500,000 or more. Dubuque County has a population of just over 97,000, while the city of Dubuque’s population is nearly 58,000. In passing the resolution, the council also requested that the money not only be used in response to the coronavirus pandemic, but to make up for budget shortfalls due to the pandemic. Dubuque Mayor Roy Buol says as gloomy as things have been since the pandemic struck, some businesses are starting to come back. According to the mayor, manufacturing is also making a recovery. Buol says a full economic recovery will depend on any further outbreaks of COVID-19 in the city and the county. In late March, the unemployment rate in Dubuque County was around 2-percent. It now stands at about 21 percent.

Isenhart Reacts To Protest

As people continue to protest in the wake of the death of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis last week, the rioting and looting in a number of major cities appears to be slowing down, as officers enforce curfews. In Dubuque, the protests for the most part have been peaceful. Many of the protesters want policy changes, not only in law enforcement, but in the areas of education, housing and employment. Iowa State Representative Chuck Isenhart of Dubuque says public policy is a supply-and-demand economy, and over time lawmakers have to supply the policies that the public demands. Isenhart says while the number one priority is to contain the spread of COVID-19 while they are in session, it’s also a good time to address the concerns of African Americans and other people of color in the state. Isenhart won Tuesday’s primary election over challenger Grant Davis in House District 100.

Dubuque County Thursday COVID-19 Update

There have been 3 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours bringing the county’s total to 353. No additional deaths were reported so the county total remains at 21. As of Wednesday afternoon, 5,717 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

School District August Start Possible

The Dubuque Community School District is proposing to amend the 2020-2021 school calendar that includes moving the first day of classes for grades K-12 to Friday, August 14th, with orientation for grades Pre-K-5, 6th and 9th on Thursday, August 13th. This proposal is pending Board approval following a public hearing at the June 8th Board meeting. As a district, they will develop a model that allows them to have three required delivery options available: fully in-person education, fully remote education, and a hybrid education, delivered as a combination of in-person and remote education.

Dubuque Parks Open With Restrictions

Effective today, with capacity restrictions and other rules in place, the City of Dubuque will open some recreational amenities and facilities at parks managed by the City of Dubuque Leisure Services Department. The Pet Park will open today as will skate parks/amenities at Flora Park, McAleece Recreational Area, and Comiskey Park. They will be limited to 50% capacity, which equals fifty 50 persons at any one time using the Flora Skate Park, 30 at the McAleece Skate Park, and three at the Comiskey Skate Spot. Residents are urged to practice social distancing of 6-10 feet from others who are not part of their household and are encouraged to wear a mask when social distancing is not possible. . Playgrounds, restrooms, pavilions and swimming pools remain closed.

Dubuque County Wednesday COVID-19 Update

No additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County have been reported since Tuesday afternoon so the county total remains at 350. One additional death was reported in Dubuque County since 2 p.m. yesterday, putting the county total at 21. 5,660 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive test rate of 6.2 percent. One in 17 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Isenhart Easily Wins Primary

Iowa State Representative Chuck Isenhart easily defeated his fellow Democrat opponent in yesterday primary election. The incumbent from Dubuque received 2,749 votes to challenger Grant Davis’ 591 votes. Isenhart, who is seeking his 7th term in office this fall, says in the last primary he received 1,880 votes, but this time the numbers speak for themselves. Right now Republicans control both chambers of the Iowa legislature. Isenhart says his goal is to change those numbers so that he can become chair of the Budget Subcommittee for Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environmental Protection. Isenhart does not have an opponent in the November general election. But that could change. Any party has an opportunity to nominate someone at their convention before the August deadline. In the race for U.S. Senate, Theresa Greenfield easily outdistanced her Democratic challengers as she captured 6,082 votes. She will face incumbent Republican Senator Joni Ernst in the fall, while Ashley Hinson defeated her challenger by getting 4,984 votes. The Republican will face incumbent Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer of Dubuque in November for a chance to represent the first district.

Fatal Jo Daviess Accident

A child was killed and two other people injured in a crash Tuesday morning between a pickup truck and semi in rural Jo Daviess County. At around 6:33 am, the Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Department received a report of a crash on U.S. Highway 20 about a half mile before its intersection with Stockton Drive near Stockton. Deputies believe that a pickup truck, driven by 32-year old Julius Jones, of Dubuque, was in the westbound lanes of Highway 20 and crossed the center line. A semi, driven by another Dubuque man, was traveling east coming over a hill, and tried to avoid Jones’ truck but couldn’t. The pickup collided with the semi, according to officials, and caught fire. Two juvenile passengers, one 10-years-old and one 9-years-old, were ejected from the pickup truck as a result of the crash. The 10-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene. The 9-year-old was first airlifted to Mercy Hospital in Rockford, Ill., before being transported to American Family Children’s Hospital in Madison, Wis. for further treatment of their injuries. Jones was also injured and airlifted to OSF Hospital in Rockford. Jones has been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, driving while license revoked, and improper lane usage. The driver of the semi refused treatment from emergency responders at the time.





Veteran’s Freedom Center Scam

According to their Facebook post, the Veteran’s Freedom Center in Dubuque says someone has stolen their logo and is pretending to be a part of the center in order to scam people out of money. The Veteran’s Freedom Center reminds people they will never ask anyone for money and you do not have to pay for military paperwork or to have another soldier relieve you for duty. The United States armed forces do not use Gmail accounts. Anything from the United States military will have a mil.com address and no one in the military will ever send you an email asking for money for a soldier or sailor.

Primary Preview

Voters in Iowa are headed to the polls today to cast their ballots in the primary election. One of the most closely watched races will be the five Democrats vying for the chance to face incumbent Republican Senator Joni Ernst. They are Michael Franken, Kimberly Graham, Theresa Greenfield, Eddie Mauro and Cal Woods. Republicans Thomas Hansen and Ashley Hinson will face each other in the U.S. House District 1 race, with the winner going up against incumbent Democrat U.S. Representative Abby Finkenauer of Dubuque in November. Locally, longtime Democrat State Representative Chuck Isenhart of Dubuque will face challenger Grant Davis also of Dubuque. Also on the ticket is Democrat Kevin Dragotto for Dubuque County Auditor. There is no Republican challenger for Dragotto. He is looking to replace Denise Dolan who will retire at the end of the year. Polls open at 7 am and close at 9 pm.

Dubuque Man Seriously Injured In Cycle Crash

A Dubuque man was airlifted to U. of I. Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City after he crashed his motorcycle in Grant County Saturday night. It happened at around 6:45 on Sandy Hook Road in Jamestown Township. 39 year old Justin Schemmel was traveling east on Sandy Hook going around curves at a high rate of speed, when he lost control and drove off the shoulder of the road. The cycle traveled about 57 feet and crashed. Schemmel was ejected.  He was first taken to Mercy Hospital in Dubuque before being taken to Iowa City. His condition has not been released. Schemmel was not wearing a helmet.

Lafayette ATV Accident

A Mount Horeb woman was hurt after being involved in an ATV accident in Lafayette County Sunday night. Authorities say the crash happened on Sargent Road in Wayne Township. An ATV being operated by 27 year old Steven Steiner of Browntown was traveling near Sargent Road just before 9, when he lost control. The ATV left the trail and rolled over. Steiner’s passenger, 20 year old Alysha Snell was transported to the hospital with unknown injuries. The accident remains under investigation.

Warren Man Charged After ATV/UTV Crash

A northwestern Illinois man faces several charges after police say he rolled is all-terrain vehicle in Jo Daviess County late Saturday night. The sheriff’s office says 28 year old Richard Kent of Warren was driving the ATV south on North Bellevue Street a few minutes before 10:30 with another ATV in front of him. Both vehicles came upon a sharp curve, and Kent lost control while going around the curve. Kent’s ATV left the road, traveled about 30 yards into a field and rolled over on its’ top. One passenger, 23 year old Travis Near also of Warren was airlifted to Mercy Health Riverside Hospital in Rockford. His condition has not been released. Another passenger, 30 year old Nicole Deyo of Apple River was taken to a hospital in Darlington and treated for her injuries. Kent and a third passenger refused treatment at the scene. Kent faces charges ranging from driving an ATV on the road, to failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

Dubuque County Tuesday COVID-19 Update

1 additional positive case of COVID-19 in Dubuque County has been reported as of this morning bringing the county total to 347. One additional death was reported in Dubuque County since 2 p.m. yesterday, putting the county total at 19. 5,515 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive test rate of 6.3 percent. One in 18 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Dubuque Peaceful Protests

The Dubuque Police wants to get the word out, despite some social media posts and rumors, Dubuque is not being overrun with radical groups trying to disrupt protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Lt. Ted McClimon says the local demonstrations over the weekend were peaceful. McClimon says the department has accurate information on what’s true and what’s rumor. McClimon says inaccurate information is only causing unnecessary fear in the community.






Relay For Life Dubuque

The Relay For Life of Dubuque will be hosting a Virtual Celebration this week. Jodi Federspiel, Senior Community Development Manager, American Cancer Society, says things kickoff Wednesday with a virtual 5K run/walk and a Chalk Walk. Thursday you can participate in the virtual silent auction at 32auctions.com that features dozens of items to bid on. The Relay For Life Celebration will culminate with a Community Car Cruise Friday in Murphy Park and a post-cruise charity Facebook concert. The cruise will include a drive through a beautiful luminaria display in honor of cancer survivors and in remembrance of those we have lost. For more information, go to www.relayforlife.org/dubuqueia.


Dubuque Parking Complaints

The Dubuque Police Department will begin enforcing all parking complaints, including parking meters, today. The department previously suspended enforcement on numerous types of parking complaints due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This included but was not limited to alternate side parking, alley parking, and street storages.

Port of Dubuque Marina Open

The Port of Dubuque Marina gas dock and slips are open for the 2020 season. The convenience store will remain closed to the public, but visiting boaters will be able to order beverages, snacks, supplies, etc. during their stay and/or while filling up with gas. For more information, hours of operation, or to reserve a slip, please visit www.portofdubuquemarina.com or call 563-582-5524.

Music On Main June Event Cancelled

The “Music on Main” June event has been cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, however at this point, organizers of the event, which used to be called “Dubuque…. and All That Jazz” say plans for the July and August events are moving forward with social distancing in mind. “Music on Main” is a free summer concert series hosted by Dubuque Main Street and is held under the Town Clock in downtown Dubuque. The dates for the next two events are July 17th and August 14th.

Dubuque Extends Building Closures

City officials in Dubuque have extended the current building closures to the public until July 6th due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Those facilities and offices include City Hall, City Hall Annex, the housing and community development department, the intermodal transportation center, leisure services department, the municipal services center and the Multicultural Family Center. The extension of closures does not apply to Bunker Hill Golf Course, Miller Riverview Park and the Port of Dubuque Marina Docks. All city parks, playgrounds, pavilions, restrooms and other amenities remain closed until further notice. City services to the public are still operational and available either online or by phone or email.

State Help Available For Renters/Homeowners

Friday  the director of Iowa Workforce Development unveiled a program that provides short-term relief to Iowa renters and homeowners, who are at immediate risk of eviction or foreclosure because of the coronavirus pandemic. Debbie Durham says the “COVID-19 Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention” program is designed to assist people who have experienced a documented loss of income due to COVID-19 and can’t make their rent or mortgage payment. Eligible applicants must have a household income that does not exceed 80-percent of the medium family income limits for the county they reside in when applying for the program. Durham says assistance will be granted on a first-come-ready-to-proceed process. If your application is approved, Durham says payments will be sent directly to the landlord or the mortgage service provider. Once all of the funds are used up, the program will expire. To learn more and to apply visit iowahousingrecovery.com

Dubuque County Monday COVID-19 Update

There were no additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported since Saturday afternoon, in fact the county total was reduced from 345 to 344, most likely due to a correction. Dubuque County’s death toll remains at 18. 5,473 Dubuque County residents have been tested for a positive test rate of 6.3 percent. One in 18 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Crystal Lake Caves Cancel Season

Crystal Lake Caves will not open for the 2020 season in Dubuque. According to a Facebook post, they have chosen to cancel the 2020 cave season for the safety of the local, regional and international community as well as their employees and owners. They will be back in 2021 with a Grand Re-Opening to celebrate the International Year of Caves and Karst and they invite people to follow them on social media for updates and education over the next year.

Tuesday Primary Polling Sites

Dubuque County residents planning to vote at the polls for Tuesday’s Primary election are reminded that the number of polling sites have been reduced in an attempt to ensure the safety of voters and poll site workers and in an effort to combat the spread of Covid-19. The usual 35 polling sites have been reduced to 9 sites across all of the County. Due to limited election workers to work the polls, there may be lines and voters should be prepared to wait in line. All registered voters were sent a postcard notifying them of the location of their polling location. To verify their polling site, voters can check the county website at https://www.dubuquecounty.org/533/Sample-Ballots. Voters can still vote early casting an curb-side, in-person ballot at the Election Annex, 75 Locust Street in Dubuque today (Monday) between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 pm.

Pizza Hut Donating Pizzas To District

A local restaurant is donating hundreds of pizzas to the Dubuque Community School District’s free meal program. Last week Pizza Hut donated over 100 pizzas to the program for students and families. They were able to pick them up at Roosevelt Middle School and Prescott Elementary. Yesterday more than 300 pizzas were delivered to the schools. Next Thursday another 300-plus pizzas will be delivered to the same schools and can be picked up between 11 and 1 pm without leaving your vehicle. For those who don’t have personal transportation, the pizzas will be brought out to you from the front entrance of the schools


Lane Closure On Julien Dubuque Bridge

On Monday, one lane of traffic on the Julien Dubuque Bridge will be closed to motorists for most of the day for a construction project that will take around two-and-half-months to complete. According to a notice from the Illinois Department of Transportation the eastbound lane will be shut-down from 6 am to 3 pm daily for the duration of the project. A detour has been set up that will take motorists through Wisconsin. Crews will repair a fence along the pedestrian walkway across the bridge. That project is scheduled for completion by mid-August, weather permitting.

Lower Bee Branch Creek Clean

The City of Dubuque Park Division is hosting a creek cleanup at the Lower Bee Branch from June 1 – 5. This is an opportunity for individuals, small groups, and families to spend time outdoors doing meaningful work to help the environment. Three time intervals are available each day to pick up trash along the banks of the Bee Branch Creek and 16th St. Detention Basin: 8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m., 10:30 a.m. – noon, and 12:30 p.m. – 2 p.m. Volunteers are asked to meet at the 16th St. Overlook. Several precautions will be made to ensure social distancing guidelines are followed during the cleanup. Only one group of 10 people or less is allowed to participate at one time. Park staff will provide cleanup supplies such as bags, plastic gloves, and trash grabbers and remain more than six feet away from volunteers at all times. Volunteers are encouraged to wear a cloth face covering while doing the cleanup. To volunteer, sign up online at https://signup.zone/vrACQn5g5YfMmtSqG or call the City of Dubuque Leisure Services office at 563.589.4263.
The creek cleanup is part of the Bee Branch Watershed Beekeepers initiative which promotes watershed health and safety, pollution prevention, responsible behavior, and an appreciation for and a connection to our natural resources. Beekeepers provides educational, recreational, and volunteer opportunities for all ages. For more information, visit www.cityofdubuque.org/beekeepers.

Primary Election ID

Dubuque County voters are reminded that identification is now required to vote in all elections. New voters in the June 2nd primary election are reminded that they will be required to show proof of identity and proof of residence. The best form of ID is a valid Iowa driver’s license with your current address. If your Iowa driver’s license has an old address on it, you can use the license as proof of identify, and use one of the following as proof of residence, if it contains your name and current address: Residential lease property tax statement, Utility bill bank statement, Paycheck other government document.  If you do not have an Iowa driver’s license, you can provide one of the following as proof of identity, if it contains your photo:  Out-of-state driver’s license ID issued by an employer, Out-of-state non driver ID card US passport, US military ID school or college ID. All forms of photo ID must be current, valid and contain an expiration date. For further information, contact the Dubuque County Election office at 589-4457 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.



Dubuque County Friday COVID-19 Update

Nine additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County have been reported, putting the county total at 338 as of this morning. Two additional deaths were reported in Dubuque County, bringing the county total to 18. In Dubuque County, 5,060 individuals have been tested with a positive test rate of 6.6 percent. 1 in 19 county residents have now been tested.

Five Flags Reopening Program

One of Dubuque’s entertainment destination has begun formulating and implementing policies that will allow the facility to reopen to the public in the coming weeks. Five Flags Center General Manager H.R. Cook says  ASM Global is including Five Flags in its new environmental hygiene protocol, VenueShield. Cook says the cancellation of grandstand events at the Jones County Fair shows the importance of major acts being able to tour the larger cities so they have a route here to perform. Five Flags will also be working within guidelines provided by local and state public health authorities. Cook says they have the Dock Dogs booked July 31st-August 3rd and that will be a good test event to practice social distancing and other health measures before their first booked concert in August.



Farm Fire

A structure fire early this morning on Prairie Creek Road resulted in significant damage and loss. Around 4:57 am the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office along with the Epworth, Bernard, Cascade, Centralia, and Farley Fire Departments responded to the Daniel Weber farm. Upon arrival, a barn/milking parlor was fully engulfed in flames. The building and its contents, including 1 cow, are considered a total loss estimated at $750,000. The exact cause of the fire is unknown at this time but does not appear suspicious in nature.

Councilman Shaw Resigning

A Dubuque City Council member is resigning due to a job move. First Ward councilman Brett Shaw made the announcement Wednesday. In a statement, Shaw says it has been a privilege to represent Dubuque residents these past 2+ years. Unfortunately, I must resign from my post as of July 7th. My professional position at Deere and Co. requires that I relocate to Moline. Shaw was elected to the City Council in November 2017.

Loras College Dance Marathon

The Loras College Dance Marathon continued its incredible support of the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital by raising more than $110,000 during its recent 2020 Dance Marathon event. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event took a unique turn as the usual format of gathering together on campus with Miracle Families had to be replaced with a virtual gathering. The final amount raised to support the Stead Family Children’s Hospital was $110,576.23. That adds to the more than $2 million raised by Loras College Dance Marathon over the past 13 years.

Dubuque County Thursday COVID-19 Update

Eight additional positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Dubuque County in the past 24 hours. Dubuque County currently has 331 positive cases as of this morning. One additional death has been reported since Wednesday bringing the total to 17. In Dubuque County, 4,954 individuals have been tested. Dubuque County has a positive test rate of 6.2 percent and 1 in 20 county residents have been tested.

Extended Early Voting Hours

The election annex on Locust Street in Dubuque will be open additional hours to assist voters who want to vote early in the June 2nd primary. The office will be open this Saturday from 8 am to 5 pm. It will also be open until 5 pm Friday and again on June 1st. To protect the safety of voters and election officials, in-person early voting will be limited to curbside. Voters can call the annex, and once they arrive they’ll be assisted in casting their ballot from the safety of their vehicle. Voters with vote-by-mail ballots are reminded that ballots must be in the mail and back to the election office no later than next Monday. Ballots can also be delivered to the election office in the court house by the time polls close at 9 pm on Election Day.

South End Tap And Others Set To Reopen

On Thursday, Governor Kim Reynolds’ proclamation that closed bars and several other non-essential businesses, will expire. The owner of a popular bar in Dubuque says he is ready to resume his business. Johnny Ohnesorge, owner of South End Tap, says he will follow the Governor directives and open at 50-percent capacity and follow all of the health guidelines that are in place. Ohnesorge says he could have started delivery or carry-out while he was shut down, but he could not compete with liquor stores. Before he was forced to close, Ohnesorge says South End Tap did a pretty good business. Ohnesorge says over the past couple of months, he has purchased a large supply of hand sanitizer, wipes and disinfectant sprays. Ohnesarge says he started a movement on Facebook called “Reopen Iowa Bars On May 28th.” It started out with about 10 people supporting the effort. Since then it has grown to over one thousand.

Jones County Fair Grandstand Cancelled

The Great Jones County Fair in Monticello is cancelling all grandstand events for the 2020 fair due to the coronavirus pandemic. The fair is scheduled for July 22-26. Fair organizers said that since live performances are being put on hold throughout the country, their stages will be empty, and all wheel and track events are being put on hold. According to General Manager, John Harms, their immediate focus will be with their youth, and to provide a safe and healthy experience for them this summer as they showcase their hard work and projects. That exhibition will be accomplished by keeping within the CDC and IDPH guidelines. The fair will have more announcements for ticket holders, as well as plans for the July 21-25, 2021 events, in the future.

133rd Sendoff Route Announced

The Iowa National Guard has announced the departure route for the 1st Battalion 133rd Infantry sendoff for this Saturday. Soldiers from Alpha Company will gather using social distancing at the Armory on Old Highway Road at 12:30. Following the ceremony, and in cooperation with police, fire and the Dubuque County sheriff’s office the route will travel from Old Highway Road to Northwest Arterial to Pennsylvania Avenue, to JFK and from JFK to Dodge Street/Highway 20. The troops will be escorted to the county line before they head to Camp Dodge in Johnston. Families and friends are encouraged to support the 133rd and wave to them as they leave. Parking will be available along Pennsylvania, between JFK and Northwest Arterial, businesses and restaurants along JFK, Hempstead High School and Dubuque Bible Church.

Jule Receives Federal Grant

A federal grant for Dubuque’s transit system is on its’ way. Jule is getting a grant for 3.6 million dollars to pay the salaries of its’ employees and implement other safety measures for its’ facilities, vehicles and assets. The U.S. Department of Transportation grant is part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.

Diamond Jo To Open

The  Diamond Jo Casino has announced it will re-open to the public on Monday, June 1st, subject to final regulatory approval. Gaming operations will resume at 8 am, along with a limited number of amenities. The property will temporarily operate with limited capacity in compliance with state directives. Safety protocols will include: Mandatory face coverings and temperature checks for all team members; social distancing requirements and capacity restrictions across all customer and team member areas, including casino floors and restaurants; Enhanced cleaning and sanitation of all high-touch surfaces and increased placement of hand sanitizer dispensers throughout their properties and required training for all team members on safety protocols. Q. Casino will also open June 1st.


Dubuque County Wednesday COVID-19 Update

There were no additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported as of Tuesday afternoon. Dubuque County currently has 323 positive cases. The death total  remains at 16. As of Tuesday, 4,850 Dubuque County residents have been tested, for a positive test rate of 6.7 percent. One in 20 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Hog Farm Wind Damage

High winds led to a structure fire at a hog farm on Highway 52N in Dubuque County just after 7:30 p.m. on Monday. Investigators say high winds during a storm blew the roof off a hog barn owned by James and Joseph Schieltz. The roof landed on a second hog building causing it to collapse onto a nursery building. The nursery building caught fire, and a fourth building sustained exposure damage. Officials say all 300 hogs in the nursery building were lost, as were some hogs in the second hog building. The total damage is estimated at $250,000.

Dubuque County Tuesday COVID-19 Update

There were 6 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported as of this morning. Dubuque County now has 324 positive cases. No additional deaths were reported for Dubuque County, so the total remains at 16. As of Sunday, 4,670 Dubuque County residents have been tested, for a positive test rate of 6.0 percent. One in 21 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Dubuque Rescue Mission Shelter

Governor Kim Reynolds’ emergency proclamation temporarily stopping evictions is set to expire next week. According to Rick Mihm, executive director of the Dubuque Rescue Mission, homeless shelters are preparing to potentially house more people than usual. The Mission currently has 20 residents and space for 12 more. In the fall it could house up to around 50 people. Mihm says, however, both they and the city want to keep people away from the shelters. Alexis Steger, who serves as director of the Housing and Community Development Department, says many landlords have been working well with their tenants and the city, but they have seen an influx of ‘soft victions’. Steger says people who have lost 50% or more of their income because of the coronavirus pandemic could qualify for this program. It offers $1,000 per family per month for three months. Steger People eligible for the program must complete a budget and go through a job searching process using the department’s programs. People interested in applying for the rental and mortgage assistance program should visit https://www.cityofdubuque.org/618/Housing-Community-Development.


Jo Daviess County Small Business Grants

The Jo Daviess County Board has extended the Jo Daviess County Small Business Stabilization Grant Program (SBSG). Applications for round two of the SBSG Program will be accepted until June 12th at 4:00 pm. The purpose of the $250,000  program is to help “non-essential” small businesses in Jo Daviess County pay expenses not covered by the federal governments “Paycheck Protection Program” or other sources of State or Federal COVID-19 relief funding. The maximum award a business can receive is $5,000 for one-month of qualifying expenses.

Dubuque County Sunday COVID-19 Update

There were 2 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported since Saturday morning. Dubuque County now has 309 positive cases. No additional deaths were reported for Dubuque County, so the total remains at 16. As of Saturday, 4,295 Dubuque County residents have been tested, for a positive test rate of 7.2 percent. One in 23 Dubuque County residents have been tested.

Isenhart To Be Challenged In the Primary

Longtime Iowa Democrat state representative Chuck Isenhart will be challenged in the June primary. The challenge is coming from within his own party from fellow Democrat  Grant Davis of Dubuque. Isenhart represents district 100. There are no Republican candidates on the primary ballot but, one could be selected during a special convention  after the June 2nd primary.

Low Travel For Memorial Day

For the first time in 20 years, Triple A is not releasing a travel forecast for Memorial Day. Mark Peterson with Triple A Iowa/Minnesota says because of the coronavirus pandemic, people are simply driving less. Gas prices were at their lowest in recent years just a few weeks ago, but they are slowing rising. Peterson says he’s not sure at this point if they’ll be issuing a travel forecast for The 4th of July or Labor Day.

New Principal At Lincoln

When the new school year begins later this year there will be a new principal at Lincoln Elementary School in Dubuque. Megan Elsinger, who currently works as a school improvement facilitator for Keystone Area Education Association, was hired by the school board recently to replace Randy Farnum, who is retiring at the end of June. Prior to coming to Keystone, Elsinger was an instructional coach in the West Delaware School District. She was also previously a high school social studies teacher and at-risk mentoring coordinator at West Delaware High School. Elsinger holds a bachelor of arts degree from Coe College and a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Northern Iowa.

Deere and Company Sales Down

Deere and Company says its worldwide net sales are down 18 percent and its net income is down 41 percent for the second quarter of 2020. The Moline-based company reported net income of $665.8 million, or $2.11 per share, for the second quarter, which ended on May 3. That’s compared to the net income of $1.134 billion, or $3.52 per share, for the quarter ending on April 28, 2019. Deere says it is taking actions to strengthen the company’s financial position, including reducing operating expenses, decreasing capital spending budgets, and other actions to preserve liquidity. Additionally, the company says it is raising about $4.5 billion in medium to long-term funding.

1st Battalion 133rd Sendoff Set For May 30th

Sendoff ceremonies for roughly 550 members of the Iowa National Guard 1st Battalion 133rd Infantry is set for later this month. Troops from five cities that include Waterloo, Dubuque, Davenport, Iowa City and Iowa Falls, will hold sendoff ceremonies on May 30th. Alpha Company in Dubuque will conduct their ceremony from the armory on Old Highway Road. All four Radio Dubuque stations, KDTH, KAT-FM, 97.3 the Rock and 101.1 the River will air the sendoff live as it happens. Captain Andrew Tindall says in order to keep everyone safe, family members will be able to say goodbye to the soldiers, but they won’t be allowed access to the armory. All members of the 133rd have been tested and will continue to be tested for the coronavirus while their overseas. The 133rd’s primary mission overseas will involve area security and force protection operations in the CENTCOM AOR. Along with fulfilling their primary duties, Iowa National Guard members have been on the frontlines in the fight to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by delivering critical medical supplies. The Dubuque sendoff will start at around 12:30 on May 30th. All of the troops will meet up at Camp Dodge in Johnston. The 133rd will be deployed for a year.


Opening Doors Recovery Grant

Opening Doors has received a $5,000 grant from the Community Foundation’s Greater Dubuque Disaster Recovery Fund in response to COVID-19. This special grant will assist clients at Teresa Shelter, Maria House and in their Permanent Supportive Housing program. Executive Director Carol Gebhart says rising unemployment  rates, reduced hours and layoffs due to COVID-19 have significantly impacted their clients. They anticipate an unprecedented rise in the need for their services when the state moratorium on evictions and utility shutoffs expires and this funding will be instrumental in assisting the vulnerable population that they serve.

Museum And Aquarium Reopens This Weekend

The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque has been closed for over two months because of the coronavirus pandemic, but with the Governor’s announcement this week that more essential businesses can reopen with safety measures in place, the museum and aquarium is poised to do just that. Today it will open to members only and then to the general public on Saturday. Wendy Scardino, director of marketing and communications says things will look a little different. One of those differences is the implementation of a timed-ticket system that requires visitors to purchase tickets in advance and allowing for a touchless entry at the box office. Only one box office will be open and it’s located at the Discovery Center building next to the paddlewheel. All staff are required to wear masks and have their temperature taken prior to their shift. Visitors are also encouraged to wear masks. Films and animal touch has been temporarily suspended, and cafes will remain closed and carry-in food and drinks are prohibited for now.

Bank Lobbies To Open Soon

With the COVID-19 pandemic changing the way we go about our everyday business, including going to our local financial institutions, some Dubuque residents want to know when they will be able to go into bank lobbies again to conduct their business. We reached out to a number of those institutions to try and get you an answer. Fidelity Bank plans to reopen its’ lobby sometime between June 1st and the 15th. Premier Bank as well as Dutrac have a June 1st reopening date. Dupaco plans to open its’ lobby back up in early June. U.S. Bank does not have a reopening date scheduled yet and no one answered at Dubuque Bank and Trust. When bank lobbies reopen they’ll do so with their customers’ safety in mind. For now drive-thru and ATM’s are open.

Short-Term Rental Mortgage Assistance Program

The City of Dubuque is offering financial assistance to qualified Dubuque renters and homeowners whose income has been reduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is funded by a federal grant and does include income and property eligibility requirements. The program is a grant program so residents who qualify and receive the assistance will not have to pay back any funds they receive. This is a short-term assistance program and can assist with a portion of approved households’ rent or mortgage for up to $1,000 for three months. To apply for the Short-Term Rental/Mortgage Assistance Program, please call 563-564-7489, email go@cityofdubuque.org, or visit www.cityofdubuque.org/housing.

Dubuque County Friday COVID-19 Update

There were 4 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported Thursday. Dubuque County now has 304 positive cases. 3 additional deaths were reported for Dubuque County, so the total is now at 16. As of Wednesday, 13 Dubuque County residents were hospitalized due to COVID-19 and 141 have recovered or are recovering.

Miller Riverview Park & Campground opening May 27 in Dubuque

Miller Riverview Park and Campground in Dubuque are set to open on May 27th for self-contained camping units only. Staff at the park have been working to prepare for this opening and there are practices and protocols that will be in place at the park to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. The campground is open to those self-contained units, which could be an RV or trailer with a bathroom or tents with portable toilets. All restrooms and shower buildings will be closed. Playgrounds and pavillions remain close and the campground will be open to campers only, no visitors. Water, electricity, and park dump stations will be available. People can use picnic tables at their own risk. Any campfires should be for occupants of the campsite only. Signage will be posted in the park to notify campers of these practices. Some campsites may be blocked off to increase the distance between campers. Campers are encouraged to use the online reservation system as the campground office will remain closed to the public. You can make a reservation here: www.cityofdubuque.org/millerriverview. 

A check-in kiosk will be available near the office for cash reservations.

Iowa’s Ride Dubuque Start

Dubuque will still be the starting point for a new Iowa bike ride across the state but it will be a year later than originally planned. The organizers behind Iowa’s Ride cancelled this year’s ride in April and announced plans for the ride to take place in the following year instead. TJ Juskiewicz, the organization’s director, said that the ride will take place between July 18 to July 24, 2021, and will follow the originally planned overnight town route of the 2020 ride from Dubuque west to Rock Rapids. Registration for the ride will be free, though registrants will need to accept a waiver of liability, according to Juskiewicz. He recommended that riders take the money that would have been spent on registration and use it in the overnight towns, or donate to charity. Overnight towns along the route include Monticelllo, Vinton, Eldora, Clarion, Emmetsburg, and Sheldon. For more information, go to iowasride.com.


Click to access Sunday-July-12-Route.pdf

Dubuque County Thursday COVID-19 Update

There were 8 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dubuque County reported Wednesday afternoon. Dubuque County now has 295 positive cases. No additional deaths were reported for Dubuque County, so the total remains at 11. 3,944 Dubuque County residents have been tested, resulting in a 7.5 percent positive rate.  As of May 19, 15 Dubuque County residents were hospitalized due to COVID-19 and 136 have recovered or are recovering.

Man Arrested After Injuring Officer

Police arrested a man after he tried to elude authorities and then injured a paramedic and a police officer in Jackson County early Tuesday morning. At around 5:45 Bellevue police and emergency crews responded to an area in the 30-thousand block of 398th Avenue in Bellevue after a man called claiming to have been poisoned. When they arrived the man was sitting in a car and was agitated and appeared to be hallucinating. The man, later identified as 36 year old Casey Brassfield, fled in the vehicle with police in pursuit. After eluding two sets of stop sticks, Brassfield eventually stopped at the intersection of County Road E-17 and Highway 61 and surrendered. He was transported to Jackson County Regional Hospital where he became uncooperative and assaulted a paramedic. Officers then subdued Brassfield, but in the process an officer suffered two broken ribs. Brassfield is charged with 2 counts of interfering with official acts resulting in serious injury, assault on a person in a certain occupation- healthcare provider-with intent to inflict serious injury, eluding with injury, OWI-drugged driving and numerous traffic offenses.

Dubuque Drug Dealer Sentenced

A Dubuque man, who prosecutors labeled as “a career offender” is going to prison. 31 year old Jerry Towns was sentenced to over 12 years in federal prison after he pleaded guilty late last year in federal court to selling cocaine. Prosecutors say Towns sold cocaine either near a park or school on four different occasions in 2017 and 2018. In 2018 police stopped a car in which Towns was a passenger. At the same time police had a warrant to search Town’s home. He called his girlfriend and told her to get the cocaine and a loaded handgun out of the house before police arrive. His girlfriend was stopped by police as she was leaving and authorities seized the drugs and the gun. Towns had two prior felony offenses for distributing cocaine and 11 other adult criminal convictions.

Mass To Resume For Catholic Churches In Dubuque


The long-awaited word on when Catholic parishes in Dubuque will be allowed to reopen is here. Archbishop Michael Jackels announced today that beginning May 30th and the 31st, the parishes throughout the 30 northeastern counties in Iowa, including Dubuque will be able to gather for outreach to the poor, for faith formation programs and for the public celebration of Mass and Sacraments. The Archbishop says in a press release that those who are sick, or frail due to advanced age or have underlying medical conditions or are nervous about getting COVID-19 should not be gathering together for any reason and everyone will still remain dispensed from the law to participate in Mass on Sundays and Holy days until further notice or until a vaccine becomes available. The Archbishop says they will continue to monitor trends in positive coronavirus tests, hospitalizations and deaths.

Iowa Restrictions Eased

Gov. Reynolds on Wednesday outlined more easing of restrictions in Iowa. Effective May 22 movie theaters, zoos, aquariums, museums and wedding reception venues will be permitted to reopen with appropriate public health measures in place. Swimming pools will reopen for lap swimming and swimming lessons. On May 28 bars and other establishments that serve alcohol, but have been limited to carry out and delivery, will be permitted to reopen for indoor or outdoor seating at 50 percent capacity. They must also follow public health measures that restaurants have implemented. June 1 Iowa schools will be permitted to resume school sponsored activities and learning. This includes high school baseball and softball. More details during her tomorrow press conference. Reynolds said the state is working closely with the Iowa High School Athletic Association, the Department of Public Health and Youth Sports Associations to develop a plan to bring other sports opportunities back for the summer. Additionally, Iowa state parks will be opening all modern restrooms, shower buildings and cabins on May 22 in time for Memorial Day. Campgrounds will be open for all campers including RV’s, popups and tent camping, but with stipulations. Youth group camp sites and shelters, lodges, playgrounds, other group camps, museums, and visitor centers will remain closed. Reynolds attributed the easing of restrictions to Iowans and local business owners doing their part to maintain social distancing standards and public health guidelines. Reynolds said Casinos and amusement parks will remain closed

County Absentee Ballots

Dubuque County voters are reminded that the deadline to request an absentee ballot to vote by mail in the June 2nd primary election is 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 22nd. Request forms must be received by the deadline. For the safety of both voters and election officials, all voters are being urged to STAY SAFE and VOTE AT HOME. Following the deadline, voters unable to vote on Election Day, can vote in person at the Election Annex, 75 Locust Street in Dubuque. Voting hours are between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday until Election Day. Due to concerns for safety of voters and election officials, in-person early voting will be limited to curbside voting. Voters can call 563-587-3870 ext 1980 upon arriving at the Annex and they will be assisted to cast their ballot from the safety of their vehicle.

Dubuque Specialty Care Covid-19

Staff at Dubuque Specialty Care are confirming more cases of COVID-19 at their facility. They say a total of 40 residents and nine employees have now tested positive for the virus. The center learned of its first positive test back on April 23rd. Staff say since then they have been following all guidance from the CDC and the Iowa Department of Public Health. That center is the only one with an outbreak in Dubuque County. Right now, there are a total of 37 outbreaks at long-term care facilities in the state.

Casinos Hope To Open In June

Casinos across Iowa have been closed for weeks now because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but most of them are optimistic about reopening their doors once Governor Reynolds’ emergency proclamation expires on May 27th. The Dubuque Racing  Association Board of Directors met virtually yesterday and are hopeful that the Governor will ease some restrictions and allow Dubuque’s two casinos, as well as casinos across the state to open back up. Q. Casino President and CEO Jesus Aviles says once they get the green light, they’ll be ready in accordance to whatever they are required to do by the state. Q General Manager Brian Rakestraw says casinos in Iowa along with the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has presented the Governor’s office with minimum standards that they will implement prior to reopening. Aviles says they have been in constant contact with their furloughed employees who can’t wait to get back to work. Q was able to pay all of its’ workers through April 15th. A number of casinos in the country have reopened or have plans to reopen soon. They include Louisiana, Mississippi, Kansas and Missouri.