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Dubuque & Tri-State News

Man Arrested After Threatening To Blow Up Police Station

A man faces a laundry list of charges after Dubuque police say he threatened to blow up the police station. Online court records made available Monday say 24 year old Tyler Thompson was arrested early Friday morning after officers responded to a disturbance call in the parking lot of Romper Stompers in the 2300 block of Central Avenue. Thompson told officers he had gotten into an argument with someone. Officers say Thompson appeared to be intoxicated and while they were placing him in a squad car, officers found a small baggie which appeared to be methamphetamine. As he was being transported to the Dubuque Law Enforcement Center, documents say Thompson threatened to blow up the police department. He faces a half dozen charges ranging from first degree harassment to possession of a controlled substance.

Donohue/Ryan Running For 3rd Term

The filing period for a seat on the Dubuque Community School Board opened yesterday, and three incumbents wasted no time filing their paperwork. Mike Donohue is seeking a 3rd four-year term on the school board, while incumbent board president Tami Ryan also filed for another term. Donohue says he decided to run again to finish what he and the board started. Like Donohue, Ryan says there is more work to be done. Ryan says she actually made the decision to seek another term several weeks ago. Incumbent Lisa Wittman has also filed papers, as well as newcomer Kate Parks, a professor at Loras College. Incumbent Tom Barton’s seat is also up for grabs and he still hasn’t decided if he will seek another term in office. The filing period ends on September 19th and the election is November 5th.

General Assistance Director Resigns

Dubuque County is looking for a new director for its’ general assistance program. Randy Rennison, current executive director for the Dubuque County Veterans Affairs Commission, submitted his resignation to the Board of Supervisors Monday morning effective immediately. In a letter to the board Rennison says the reason he stepped down was the supervisors decision to “quote” confirm that Josh Jasper, director for Resources Unite will be the new director of the general assistance program effective September 1st. The letter further states that along with his resignation, “general assistance” issues will not be seen or heard within the VA office, so that staff can concentrate solely on veterans issues. Rennison emphasized that he will continue to be head of the VA Commission. A couple of weeks ago the board voted to turn over responsibilities of the general assistance program to Resources Unite and gave the non-profit $30,000.

Heroes for History Stair Tribute 5K

The Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society, in partnership with Galena-area first responders and many local businesses and private donors, will hold its fourth annual Heroes for History Stair Tribute 5K, on Saturday morning, September 7th, in downtown Galena. The event commemorates the 18-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks while also honoring the brave men and women first responders who protect us every day. The Heroes for History Stair Tribute is a 5K competitive run/fun walk with Galena’s iconic Green Street staircase as the defining, and most challenging, feature. Net proceeds will be split between the Historical Society and Jo Daviess County-based first responder agencies. Event sign-in and staging will take place at the 100 block of Green Street. Entrance fee is $35 for the timed competition, $30 for active first responders, $25 for fun run/walkers. Registration is now open at History5k.org. and the deadline is August 29th.

US Cellular-City Council

The City Council last week approved a lease agreement for US Cellular to deploy “small cell” infrastructure in Dubuque in the future. This infrastructure will use small wireless communication devices to enhance capacity in Dubuque to handle the increasing number of users and mobile devices. Mike Van Milligen, City Manager, says the agreement will address specific safety concerns by the City-for Fire and EMS mobile devices experiencing signal loss in route to a call-to area concerns for unreliable service during portions of the day. David Lyons, Sustainable Innovations Consultant, told the council the first set of six sites will generally be located in the Kennedy Mall and NW Arterial commercial corridors before branching out in other parts of the city. These will be 4G placements which extend wireless coverage using traditional communication bandwidths, and do not include any 5G technology. Any future replacement of these 4G sites with 5G equipment would require specific application, authorization and approval by the City.

DuMA- New Fall Exhibits

The Dubuque Museum of Art will present two new exhibits this fall, highlighting the imagination of celebrated children’s book author and artist Arthur Geisert and the paintings of artist Alec Egan. Opening September 21st, in the Falb Family Gallery on the museum’s second floor, Arthur Geisert: Tall and Not-So-Tall Tales will feature the original illustrations from Geisert’s latest work of fiction, “Pumpkin Island”, along with illustrations from his 2013 book “Thunderstorm”. The exhibit will bring Geisert’s books to life with more than 60 hand-colored etchings displayed alongside the artist’s drawings, videos, and hands-on activities for children and families. The exhibit continues through January 5, 2020. Born in Texas and raised in Los Angeles, Geisert relocated to Iowa in 2007 and today makes his home and studio in Elkader. A variety of public programs and events are planned in conjunction with the exhibition; details about each event will be shared via the Museum’s Facebook and Instagram pages and at www.dbqart.com.


Arthur Geisert, Pumpkin Island (detail), 2018, hand-colored, copper plate etching on paper, courtesy of Jack and Mantea Schmid Family, T2019.

Hazel Green Resident Charged With Sex Abuse

A Hazel Green resident faces felony sexual abuse charges after police say he video- taped himself having sexual contact with a least one young girl. Online court documents from Dubuque County say 18 year old Caleb Durr is being held in the county jail on a 75-thousand dollar cash-only bond. Durr is charged with four felony counts of second degree sexual abuse. The incident involves an 8 year old girl, who reported the abuse to a relative, who in turn told the girl’s mother. The victim’s mother was able to get Durr’s cell phone and turn it over to police. The video showed Durr having inappropriate contact with at least one young girl. If convicted on all four counts, Durr could be sentenced to up to 100 years behind bars.

Back To School Safety Tips

Students in the Dubuque Community school district as well as Holy Family Catholic schools are headed back to class today. With that in mind, the Dubuque police department wants kids to arrive and return home safely. Lt. Joe Messerich says motorists should be especially aware of their surroundings when kids are going and coming from school. When you see a school bus with “flashing lights” its’ “stop arm” down, motorists should make sure they obey the law. Messerich encourages parents to talk to their kids about how to stay safe to and from school, and never talk to strangers. The police department is also doing its’ part to ensure the safety of all students when they are at school. Messerich says typically the first week of school for students in Dubuque has been pretty uneventful, and that’s not a bad thing.

Finley Wendt Cancer Center Healing Art Garden

A Dubuque hospital is using area student art to brighten the day of patients and families. Janaan Roberts, department secretary at UnityPoint Health-Finley Hospital’s Wendt Regional Cancer Center, says the idea of a Healing Art Garden came to her last year. The Healing Art Garden features students from area schools on a monthly basis. Each month a new school and students are featured. They had 7 schools participate this last year:  Scales Mound, Peosta Elementary, Epworth Elementary, Holy Ghost Elementary, Dyersville Elementary, Potosi and Cassville. The goal is to allow the minds of the people who visit the Wendt Center to have an adventure beyond cancer. As the leading cancer program in the community, hundreds of patients and families visit the center annually. For more information about the Wendt Regional Cancer Center visit unitypoint.org and click on services.

Jo Daviess County Accident

One-person was injured in a single vehicle accident in Jo Daviess County near West Stagecoach Trail Saturday evening. The sheriff’s department reports that 57- year old William H. Smith of Chillicothe, IL was injured in the accident. He was the passenger of a vehicle driven by 51-year old Steven A. Fritz of Freeport. Fritz is reported to have lost control of the vehicle on a sharp curve and drove off the paved roadway to the right and into the ditch. The vehicle struck a steep embankment causing it to spin and become air born. The vehicle came to rest in a nearby vineyard approximately 140ft from the roadway. Fritz is reported to have received minor injuries, while Smith was taken to Finley Hospital. Fritz faces charges of failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

Cavanagh To Host Meet-And-Greet

A Dubuque city council candidate has scheduled a meet-and-greet in the downtown area this week. 4th ward candidate Brad Cavanagh will meet and talk with local residents at Jubeck New World Brewing on West 11th Street from 6 to 8 pm Tuesday. Cavanagh says the meet-and-greet is just another way he is working to reach out to people in the 4th ward. The event is free and open to the public.

Julien Dubuque Bridge One Lane

Julien Dubuque Bridge eastbound traffic on US 20 is down to one lane until 3 pm today for routine bridge maintenance by the Iowa D.O.T. Detour signs have been posted.

Four Mounds-Google.org Impact Challenge

A Dubuque nonprofit is asking for support from the public to help vote for them in the Google.org Impact Challenge which kicks off today. Four Mounds has been selected as one of five Iowa nonprofits to win #GICIowa, with a prize of $175,000 to support an expansion of the Four Mounds HEART program to serve adults disconnected from work. Four Mounds is asking for the community’s support in winning the People’s Choice award. That award, an additional $125,000 grant, will be given to the nonprofit that receives the most public votes. Go to g.co/IowaChallenge to vote, only one vote per person. Public voting began August 23rd at midnight and ends August 30th at 11:59 p.m.

Larson To Resign

The city councilwoman who represents Dubuque’s 3rd ward will be stepping down Friday. Kate Larson submitted her resignation yesterday. She says she did so in order to give the council more options in filling her vacant seat. Larson initially announced that she would be vacating the seat during Monday night’s council meeting, but at the time she said she had hoped to serve through the end of the year. The council now has a few options in filling her seat. The filing deadline to run for city office is August 29th, which means candidates still have time to file paperwork. Another option would be for the council to appoint someone on an interim basis.

Fanduel Sportsbook Opening At Jo

We now know when the Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque will start taking bets on sporting events. The new Fanduel Sportsbook will open at the Diamond Jo Casino next month. This will be Fanduel’s second sportsbook in the Midwest. The opening will happen at noon on September 4th and on hand to make the ceremonial first bet will be former Green Bay legend Antonio Freeman. The following night there will be a Green Bay viewing party with Freeman and fans as the Packers open the 100th season of professional football and their regular season with a game against the Chicago Bears from Soldier Field. Q Casino announced this week that it will start taking bets sometime next week.

Semi Truck, Tow Truck Accident

The Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Office responded to a two-vehicle accident Wednesday morning. A Peterbuilt semi tractor with an unloaded flatbed trailer driven by 42-year old Oscar Schumucker of Syracuse, Indiana and a Kenworth T800 tow truck driven by 51-year old Michael Nieminski of Oak Lawn, Illinois were both travelling southeast on HWY 20W about one-eighth mile northwest of West Glen Hollow. Around 6:56 am, the vehicles traveled down a hill and encountered slippery conditions and Nieminski, who was following Shumuker, lost control of the tow truck and it veered off the roadway to the east causing it to roll. Nieminski’s semi also lost control causing it to “jack knife” as it skidded off the roadway to the west. The two vehicles never made contact with one another. Nieminski was transported to Midwest Medical Center for treatment. Schumucker was not injured in the crash which remains under investigation.

St. Mark Back To School Supplies

Volunteers and staff from St. Mark in Dubuque finished packaging school supplies for kids in Dubuque and Jo Daviess Counties last week as the clock winds down to the start of a new school year. Beth McGorry, outreach coordinator at St. Mark says they expect to serve over 1,600 elementary students and over 400 middle and high schoolers this year. The kids are being supplied with the basic essentials in order to get off to a good year. McGorry says the kids as well as parents are very appreciative of what St. Mark does for them, by not only providing school supplies every year, but providing after-school opportunities as well. The supplies were delivered to the perspective schools by volunteers from John Deere.

Ridgeway Woman Hurt In Crash

Authorities in Lafayette County are investigating a two-vehicle crash that sent a Ridgeway woman to the hospital Tuesday morning. A release from the sheriff’s office says the accident happened a few minutes before noon at the intersection of South Mound Road and East State Street in the Village of Belmont. A vehicle driven by 20 year old Rosemary Hansen was traveling east on East State, when she ran a stop sign. Her vehicle was struck broadside by a northbound vehicle driven by 44 year old Mark Burns of Dubuque. Hansen was transported to Upland Hills Hospital in Dodgeville for treatment of her injuries.

Del Toro Running Again

Incumbent Dubuque city councilman Luis Del Toro has filed the necessary paperwork to run for a second term in office. Del Toro, who represents the second ward, is the fourth person to filed papers to run for a seat on the council. So far, former Black Hills employee Laura Roussell is the only one who has filed paperwork to run in the second ward. There are two other open seats on the council this fall. Incumbent at-large councilman David Resnick has filed for re-election, while incumbent fourth ward representative Jake Rios made the decision earlier to not seek a second term. At least one person has filed to run for Rios’ seat. Brad Cavanaugh filed papers last month. Two others, Jay Schiesl and Nino Erba have said they will run for the fourth ward seat, but so far they haven’t filed the paperwork. The filing deadline is August 29th, and the election is November 5th.

Tails at Twilight-Dubuque Humane Society

A Dubuque non-profit will be holding one their main fundraisers’ and time has almost run out to get tickets. The Dubuque Regional Humane Society is holding their Tails at Twilight event Thursday, September 5th at the Grand River Center and Friday is the last day to get tickets. There will be live music during registration and cocktail hour, which starts at 5:30 pm followed by an evening of celebration hosted by comedian Tim Cavanagh, as featured on Comedy Central. The night includes a silent auction, followed by dinner, a live auction and concludes with the renowned Paws Up. Tickets are $75 per person or $750 for table of 10 and can be purchased online at https://www.dbqhumane.org/events/tails-at-twilight/.

Greeley Man Pleads Guilty In Fatality

A Greeley man has agreed to a plea deal for his role in the death of an Edgewood woman more than 3 years ago. Court records from Delaware County show that 31 year old Max Fenton pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. If the deal is approved by a judge, the charge will be reduced from a felony to an aggravated misdemeanor. Fenton was accused of illegally firing an “improvised cannon” made from the sawed-off barrel of a black powder rifle in July of 2016. A piece of shrapnel struck 55 year old Lori Heims in the head killing her. A sentencing hearing is set for Fenton on October 29th.

MercyOne Dubuque-Magnet Designation

A Dubuque hospital has earned a prestigious recognition for the fourth time. MercyOne Dubuque Medical Center has earned Magnet designation which distinguishes health care organizations that meet rigorous standards for nursing excellence. This credential is the highest national honor for professional nursing practice and recognizes MercyOne as a leader in patient care. Just 498 U.S. health care organizations out of over 6,300 U.S. hospitals have achieved Magnet recognition. MercyOne Dubuque is the second hospital in Iowa to achieve its fourth designation, just behind University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, which achieved its fourth designation in 2018.

Woman Charged After Hitting Ex-Boyfriend

A Dubuque woman was arrested this week after police say she struck her ex-boyfriend in the parking lot of a convenience store. 23 year old Gabrielle Bennett was arrested Tuesday night and charged with assault while displaying a dangerous weapon, willful injury and reckless driving. Online court records say the incident happened at around 7 pm in the 900 block of Jackson Street. Bennett’s ex-boyfriend told police he was walking to a convenience store at around 7 pm, when a vehicle, later determined to be driven by Bennett pulled into the parking lot and hit him. Store surveillance footage showed the car striking Bennett’s ex throwing him onto the hood of the car, before he fell to the ground. He suffered several injuries including abrasions and scrapes to his arm and legs. When questioned by investigators Bennett said she tried to swerve to miss her ex.

Dalsing Named New Airport Director

A longtime employee of the Dubuque Regional Airport has been named the new director. In his new position Todd Dalsing will operate under supervision and policy direction from the Airport Commission and will be responsible for administrative work in the management of the airport and the Dubuque Jet Center. Other responsibilities include supervising and directing the activities of supervisory and other personnel of the airport, conferring with representatives of federal agencies, commercial airlines, military and private aircraft operators and other users of airport facilities. Dalsing graduated from the University of Dubuque with a bachelor of science degree in aviation management and flight operations. Dalsing replaces Robert Grierson who will retire at the end of November.

Man Injured After Falling From Truck

The Dubuque County sheriff’s office is investigating an incident where a man fell off a truck this week and suffered a head injury. According to a press release from the department, 82 year old Leonard Leconte was driving his truck out of his lane at around 7 o’clock Tuesday night while his son, 57 year old Kevin Leconte sat on the lowered tailgate. As Leonard turned south onto Olde Massey Road, Kevin slid off of the tailgate and landed on the road causing a laceration to his head. He was transported to Mercy Hospital before being taken to U of I Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. His condition has not been released.

The Fight For Suffrage-Galena

The Fight For Suffrage will cover the movement for women to gain the right to vote in a temporary exhibit at the Galena and U.S. Grant Museum. The exhibit opens at 5 p.m. Thursday, August 22nd at a special preview for members of the Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society and the League of Women Voters of Jo Daviess County. A portrayer of Susan B. Anthony, a renowned suffragette, will make an appearance at the opening. Galena was a think tank for voting rights decades before the 19th amendment was ratified, granting women the right to vote. Archive materials from the museum collection, including early League of Women Voters materials, will be part of the exhibit. Light refreshments will be served for Society and League members and their guests. RSVP by calling 815-777-9129 or infogalenahistorymuseum.org.


Photo: captures the moment Catherine Flanagan, left, and Madeleine Watson, right, of the National Woman's Party were arrested as they picket with banners before the White House East Gate in 1917. The photo shows a heckling sailor to the left, policemen left and right, the arresting policewoman at the center, and a crowd of men behind. The photo by Harris & Ewing was retrieved from the Library of Congress.

Winnin With Finnin KIA Giveaway

In a little over six weeks some lucky person will be the winner of a 2019 Kia Forte LXS. It’s all part of the “Winnin with Finnin KIA giveaway contest. The contest is being brought to you by Finnin Kia, Kwik Stop/Dairy Queen, Fazoli’s and the Radio Dubuque stations. Dairy Queen, Fazoli’s restaurant manager Tessa Sayhe, says it’s easy to register and there is no purchase required. The registration deadline is September 26th. Second place prize is free gas for a year, the third place prize is a weekend drive-away vacation. You can also register online with this station. Sayhe says the registration numbers are increasing everyday. The last time a brand new vehicle was given away in the Tri-State area was at one of the local casinos.

Power Line Approved-Marklein

State regulators have approved a contentious power line project in southwestern Wisconsin. The Public Service Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to approve construction of the Cardinal-Hickory Creek line between Dubuque and Middleton. Senator Howard Marklein says the project falls in line with what Governor Tony Evers would like to see going forward with the state’s carbon footprint. Marklein says the residents of the 17th Senate District did their best to participate in the process and he appreciate’s all of the time and effort they dedicated to educating him and the PSC. Their advocacy was an important part of the discussion and made an impact. The project still needs approval from the Iowa Utilities Board and federal regulators to cross the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge.

Dubuque Man Found Guilty Of Stealing

A jury in Dubuque County has found a Dubuque man guilty of stealing money from his girlfriend’s mother over the course of 13 months. Online court records say 55 year old John Kraus was convicted of second degree theft. Surveillance camera footage showed Kraus making at least 15 ATM withdrawals totaling a little over $3,200 from the account of Marguerite Shea. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for October 14th. Kraus’ girlfriend, 55 year old Susan Shea has pleaded guilty to a felony charge of abuse of a dependent adult in the case. Her sentencing hearing is set for September 16th. Documents say Marguerite Shea is missing at least $140,000 or more. The withdrawals took place between December 2016 and January of 2018.

Q To Start Taking Bets Next Week

While three casinos in Iowa started taking bets on sporting events last week under the state’s new sports betting law, many more won’t start for a few weeks. And while it’s not known exactly when the Diamond Jo will start taking bets, officials at Q Casino hope to start taking wagers next week. General Manager Brian Rakestraw says if all goes as planned they could be taking bets as early as next Tuesday or Wednesday. The expected target date for the Q to start taking bets will coincide with the upcoming football season. Rakestraw says the betting parlor is designed to give patrons a very unique experience and there will be plenty of games to wager on. The betting parlor is located on the upper level of the casino, just to the left of the main entrance.

Dubuque Man Guilty of Sexual Exploitation and Meth

A Dubuque man who sexually exploited a child and distributed ice methamphetamine has been sentenced to 22-years in federal prison. The evidence in the trial showed that 43-year old Christopher Frommelt provided ice methamphetamine to a 16-year old girl and videotaped himself having sex with her in January of 2018. Frommelt was also found guilty of conspiring with others to distribute ice methamphetamine, having provided a rental car and $2,600 for others to obtain the drug in Texas. Charges he was found guilty of include one count each of sexual exploitation of a child, conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, distribution of a controlled substance to a person under 21 and near a protected location, and distribution of methamphetamine on premises where a person under 18 was present.A special assessment of $5,400 was imposed and Frommelt must also serve a 6-year term of supervised release. He must comply with all sex offender and public notification requirements.

Council Member Larson Moving, Stepping Down

Third Ward Dubuque City Councilwoman Kate Larson announced Monday evening that she and her family are moving to central Illinois due to unforeseen job changes over the past year and will be vacating her seat on the council. Larson said the decision to leave Dubuque and her position on the council was a tough one and she hopes to serve for the remainder of this year. Larson’s term was set to expire at the end of 2021.

Mopars on the Mississippi-Dubuque

The Dubuque County Fairgrounds will host an annual car show and swap meet this month. Rick Campbell, Director of Willowa Chapter of the Chicagoland Mopar Connection says the 23rd Annual Mopars on the Mississippi will kick-off August 24th from 6 to 10 pm. Sunday will feature over 50 vendors in the popular swap area and sometimes nearly 300 cars will attend the event. Campbell says the Dubuque Senior High Jazz Band will perform Sunday and a portion of the events proceeds go back to them as well as an area volunteer Fire Department. All makes of cars are welcome to enter the car show for a $10 fee and there will be trophy’s for several categories. Spectators get in for $3, kids under 16 get in free. For more information about the event search Mopars on the Mississippi on Facebook.

Boil Advisory For Cassville

Officials in the Village of Cassville have issued a boil advisory after E-Coli bacteria was discovered in the water supply last week. The E-Coli was detected at the local library last Wednesday. Official took a second sample of water at Eckstein Memorial Library on Friday and while they found no E-Coli the presence of coliform bacteria was found. A third sample has been taken and those results are expected to be released Tuesday. Meantime officials are urging residents to boil their tap water at least one minute before using it to drink, make ice or cook with it. Another alternative is to buy bottled water.

Dubuque Man Faces Federal Prison Time

A Dubuque man could be spending the next decade-and-half in federal prison after pleading guilty to a gun charge. Court records from Cedar Rapids say 34 year old Norris Culver recently pled guilty to possession of a firearm and ammunition by a felon and a person convicted of domestic violence. In May officers responded to a report of gunshots in the 800 block of Rhomberg Avenue. There they found spent shell casings and bullet marks on the front of a home. Statements by witnesses and traffic camera footage were used by police to identify Culver. He was arrested after leaving a residence in the area. Officers searched that residence and found a 45 caliber handgun that matched the shell casings found at the original scene. Culver will be sentenced at a later date.

Woman Faces Charges After Injuring Officers

A woman who was residing at the Elm Street correctional facility in Dubuque was arrested late last week after police say she caused injuries to two officers. Court documents made available Monday say 22 year old Mara Leeser is charged with two counts of interference with official acts bodily injury, one count of assault on a peace office or firefighter and a warrant charging housing a prisoner for Elm Street. Leeser was arrested last Friday morning after police responded to a report of a disturbance at the facility. Leeser reportedly attempted to leave by forcing her way past staff members and tried to punch one of them. As officers were taking Leeser to be placed in a squad car, she ran and got into a vehicle that was parked in front of the facility. Officers took Leeser to the ground, but she refused to let go of the door handle. She then kicked one of the officers in the face, before she was pepper-sprayed. Another officer sustained cuts and abrasions to his hand during the skirmish.

Fake Money In Dubuque

Police are seeking assistance in identifying two female suspects who allegedly passed counterfeit money at Dubuque Hy-Vee stores. Two seperate incidents occurred on August 1st and the other on August 2nd. In all three cases, a fake $100 bill was used to make a small purchase and then the suspects received change from the cashier. The suspects are possibly associated with a dark SUV. If you have any information, contact the Dubuque Police Department at 563-589-4415.

Galena Drafts Ordinance For Rec Pot

Illinois recently legalized the use of recreational marijuana. Now many cities have to decide how to handle the new law, including one town close to the Iowa border. The Galena city council has passed a draft of an ordinance to allow the sales of recreational marijuana within the city. A four-to-one vote passed the draft with only the Mayor casting the dissenting vote. Council members largely agree they would rather be on top of the issue as opposed to dealing with effects from other communities. Councilman Robert Hahn says that he sees benefits in both the tax the city can place on it as well as being ahead of the issue. With tourism being the number one contributor to Galena’s revenue, the council is optimistic but unsure at this time what it will do. The next step involves writing up rules and regulations for the ordinance and holding a public forum. The city does believe there is already someone is interested in opening a shop in the city.

Dubuque Auxiliary Police Receive DRA Grant

The Dubuque Auxiliary Police recently received a Dubuque Racing Association grant. The $3,250 grant will be used to replace short sleeve uniform shirts. Members of the Auxiliary Police, an entirely volunteer organization, donate significant amounts of time each year as they assist the Dubuque Police on major calls and special events. Their willingness to volunteer results in reduced overtime cost to the Police Department/City and an increase in the availability of sworn DPD Officers.

Seeking Dog Involved in Biting Incident

The City of Dubuque Health Services Department is seeking information regarding a dog involved in a biting incident that occurred Thursday around 6:30 pm at the North Grandview Avenue Dog Park. The dog is described as a medium to large-sized chocolate lab. It was wearing a collar at the time of the incident. The Caucasian male accompanying the dog appeared to be in his 20’s with brown hair and facial hair. 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.

Loras College Car Wash Fundraiser

A Dubuque college is continuing their fundraising to help an Iowa hospital. Lauren Krapfl, a member of the Loras College Dance Marathon executive board, says the group is best known for their local dance marathon. This week they are holding their annual car wash fundraiser and it will again be held in the Theisen’s parking lot. With their fundraising efforts, the students are getting close to their goal of $500,000. The car wash will be held Sunday, August 25th from 10 am to 3 pm and people are asked to give a free will donation. Their popular dance marathon will be held next April.

Dubuque Pool Closures-Doggie Dip Schedule

Dubuque’s Flora public swimming pool is scheduled to close this week for the 2019 summer season. Following the final day of public swimming, they will host a Doggie Dip. The last day for public swimming at the Flora Park swimming pool is August 23rd. Following the final day of public swimming, the family dog is invited to take a dip  on Saturday, August 24th. Dogs must be on a leash at all times until they are in the swimming pool. A $5 admission fee per dog includes access for immediate family members. The last day for public swimming at the Nicholas J. Sutton swimming pool was Friday and they had their Doggie Dip on Saturday.

Police Chase and Tear Gas

Two Savanna, Illinois, men are facing charges after leading Maquoketa Police on a chase that led to the use of tear gas. On Thursday, around 8:06 pm, Maquoketa Police conducted a traffic stop near the intersection of Ohio and Platt Street and the driver refused to identify himself. After officers attempted to arrest him the driver sped away and a vehicle pursuit ensued, during which the suspect’s car collided with another vehicle. The pursuit ended at 1010 German Street, where the two males, identified as 35-year old Dorie Thomas and 33-year old Derrick Thomas, barricaded themselves in Apt. #2. After multiple attempts to establish communication, the officers applied for and were granted a search warrent and Iowa State Patrol Tactical Team was called in to assist. Tear gas was introduced into the apartment and at approximately 11:53 pm both suspects were taken into custody. Dorie Thomas is charged with Assault on a Police Officer, Operation without Owners Consent, Interference with Official Acts, Eluding, Reckless Driving, Careless Driving, and No Valid License. Passenger Derrick Thomas was charged with Interference with Official Acts. Both subjects were booked into the Jackson County Detention Center.

City Council- Veterans Memorial Project Delay

City of Dubuque staff are recommending City Council reject the bids received for the Chaplain Schmitt Island Veterans Memorial Project so the project can be rebid to stay within the established project budget of $2.5 million after design changes are made. Kevin Lynch, Schmitt Island Task Force chair, says there will be a delay in the timeline. The lowest of three bids received for the project was more than 27 percent over the architect’s estimate. If the City Council approves the request at their August 19th meeting, City staff will work with the project’s advisory committee, partners, and design consultants to develop alternatives to create cost savings. Schmitt says the Dubuque Racing Association, who is funding the project, and Schmitt Island Task Force are totally committed to seeing that our veterans get the honor they deserve. The proposed improved and expanded Veterans Memorial Plaza is intended to facilitate formal and informal gatherings, ceremonies, and contemplation. Additionally, project includes the relocation of the Tri-State Vietnam Veterans Memorial, currently located by Miller Riverview Park, to the new Veterans Memorial Plaza.

City Council-Goal Setting

The Dubuque City Council completed its annual goal-setting sessions on Wednesday. Over the course of three evening sessions, City Council members identified top and high priorities for a 2019-2021 policy agenda as well as a management agenda for projects and initiatives. Top Priorities include Facilities & Programs for the Dream Center, Emerald Ash Borer Program, Revision of the Human Resources Policies & Handbook, Implementation of Imagine Dubuque, Project Priority & Funding of the Major Street Improvement Plan, and funding of Parking Ramp Maintenance. High Priorities include, Brain Health Strategy & Action Plan, Re-Affirmation of the Debt Reduction Plan, funding for Fountain of Youth, Four Mounds/HEART Program, and Transit Vehicle Replacement Funding, and increased funding for the Street Maintenance Program.

New VA Clinic Ribbon Cutting

Thursday was an historic day for veterans and their families in the Tri-State area. A ribbon cutting was held for the new VA Clinic inside the old Kmart building on Dodge Street. VA Clinic opened. Judith Johnson-Mekota, director of the Iowa City VA says the new facility is all about the “patient experience”. Veteran Jim Lewis of Dubuque says veterans and their families now have convenient accessibility to a clinic right in their own back yard. Jim Wagner, executive director of the Veterans Freedom Center in Dubuque, says the new clinic has been a long time coming, but it was worth it. The Freedom Center has a van it uses to transport veterans to Iowa City. With the added amenities at the new clinic Wagner says they won’t have to make as many trips to the Iowa City clinic. Over the next week, the equipment at the old VA clinic at Mercy Hospital will be moved to the new location and the clinic will officially start seeing veterans on August 26th.

Dubuque Woman Arrested For Burglary

A Dubuque woman was arrested after police say she and another person illegally entered a residence on the city’s north end last weekend and assaulted two people. Online court records made available Thursday say 21 year old Larissa Greer was arrested Thursday morning and charged with first degree burglary and driving while barred. A police report says Greer and 35 year old Bryant Terrell of Dubuque, along with another woman who hasn’t been identified, went to Terrell’s ex-girlfriend’s residence in the 2500 block of Jackson Street last Saturday evening and illegally entered through an unlocked door. Terrell and his ex-girlfriend got into an argument and that’s when police say Greer and Terrell assaulted the woman and another man who was at the residence. They both sustained minor injuries. A warrant has been issued for Terrell’s arrest. Documents don’t say if the other unidentified woman will be charged.

Jo Daviess Felony Drug Arrest

A Hanover man faces felony drug charges following a traffic stop in Jo Daviess County Wednesday night. A few minutes after 8 o’clock, a deputy pulled over a pickup truck for a registration violation on South Derinda Road. During the stop, a search was conducted and the deputy found methamphetamine, cannabis and drug paraphernalia. The driver of the pickup, 39 year old Arley Heinzman was charged with possession of meth, cannabis and drug paraphernalia. He was also charged with illegal transportation of alcohol. Two passengers, 31 year old Brady Stevenson of Hanover and 32 year old Nicholas Diaz of Elizabeth were cited for illegal transportation of alcohol. The incident remains under investigation.

Dubuque Pool Closures-Doggie Dip Schedule

Dubuque’s Sutton and Flora public swimming pools are scheduled to close soon for the 2019 summer season. Following the final day of public swimming, each pool will host a Doggie Dip. The last day for public swimming at the Nicholas J. Sutton swimming pool is Friday. The last day for public swimming at the Flora Park swimming pool is August 23rd. Following the final day of public swimming, the family dog is invited to take a dip in Sutton Pool on Saturday, and in Flora Pool on Saturday, August 24th. Dogs must be on a leash at all times until they are in the swimming pool. A $5 admission fee per dog includes access for immediate family members.

Established time frames by weight class include:

  • Dogs under 30 lbs.: 10-11 a.m.
  • Dogs between 31-60 lbs.: 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
  • Dogs 61 lbs. and larger: 1-2 p.m.

Over Two Decades Old Remains Identified

After nearly a quarter-of-a-century authorities in Grant County have identified the remains of a person who died in the mid-1990s. A release from the sheriff’s office says in the fall of 1995, the remains of a man were located in a small wooded area off Highway 151 near Maryville Heights. The body was severely decomposed and the Grant County Coroner at the time attempted to identify the body without success. The coroner did however determine that the man died of a heart related condition. The FBI was called in to try and obtain fingerprints, but was unable to get appropriate prints to check the databases. The body was labeled as “John Doe’ and was buried in a county owned cemetery in the spring of 1996. Earlier this year, Grant County Coroner Phyllis Fuerstenberg reopened the case and with new techniques and technology was able to get fingerprints. After a search of the database the body was identified as Gale Joseph Byers, a veteran of the military and originally from Boscobel. Byers was 57 at the time of his death. His family was then notified and told where he was buried. The family decided to leave Byers’ remains in the county owned cemetery. With his military service, the Grant County Veterans Service office is checking to see what military benefits may be available to place a headstone on the grave site. Once a headstone is set in place with proper identification the family will hold a graveside service.

Possible Data Breach At HyVee

HyVee is investigating a possible data breach involving its’ payment processing systems for some of its’ business properties. That’s according to a statement released by the company Wednesday. According to HyVee, they recently detected unusual activity on certain aspects of their payment processing systems. They are specifically looking at transactions on gas pumps at HyVee gas stations, drive thru coffee shops and their store-operated restaurants such as Market Grille, Market Grille Express and certain Wahlbergers locations. Those locations utilize a different card reading system than those in the main grocery stores, drug store locations or purchases made inside of HyVee gas locations rather than at the pump. The company currently believes that transactions using those card processing systems are safe from this potential breach. HyVee recommends that customers who are concerned to closely monitor their card statements and balances for unauthorized activity. If a customer notices something unexpected they should contact their financial institution.

Sports Betting Starts At Noon Thursday

Casinos in Iowa have the green light to take bets on sporting events beginning at noon today. A few weeks ago the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission put the final touches on rules that regulate sports betting in the state. All but one of the state’s casinos did not apply for a license for sports betting. Dubuque’s two gaming facilities have acquired their license and will be taking bets. Q President and CEO Jesus Aviles, says their betting station is located on the upper level of the casino, just to the left of the main entrance. There is a huge counter set up in the station where patrons can place their bets. The station also has a number of angled big screen TVs that display the odds on what sporting events people are betting on. The sports betting bill passed by Iowa lawmakers earlier this year excludes betting on some events, like minor leagues and in-state college team players. You must be 21 or older to bet on sporting events.

Dubuque Man Sentenced On Sex Abuse Charge

A Dubuque man was sentenced to up to 25 years in prison this week on a sexual abuse charge. Online court records show that 36 year old Daniel Marcov entered an Alford plea to second degree sexual abuse and probation violation. In exchange, the county attorney’s office dismissed a charge of second degree sexual abuse in a separate case. Marcov was accused of having inappropriate contact with a girl younger than 13 and a boy younger than 18 dating back to 2011. In addition to serving at least 17 years of his sentence, Marcov was ordered to register as a sex offender once he gets out and be subject to a lifetime of supervision.

Cascade Lanes Fire

A Dubuque County bowling alley is a total loss after a fire early Thursday morning. Firefighters in Dubuque County responded to a fire around 2:40 a.m. at Cascade Lanes. Crews did not say why the fire started but they believe it began in the bar area and spread to the bowling lanes. The Cascade fire chief tells KCRG TV no one was inside at the time of the fire.

VA Clinic To Open This Week

The long anticipated grand opening of a new VA Clinic in Dubuque happens this week. The clinic is located inside the old Kmart building next to Plaza 20 on Dodge Street. The outpatient clinic replaces the current one at 200 Mercy Drive. Bryan Clark, Public Affairs Officer for the VA in Iowa City says the current location is about 5,400 square feet. The new location is around 22,000 square feet. The the new facility will also provide room for classes for veterans. A ribbon cutting ceremony will be held on Thursday afternoon at 1 pm. Clark says although the new clinic will open on Thursday, they won’t start seeing veterans until August 26th.

Whispurring Hope Animal Rescue-At the Hop

A Dubuque non-profit is turning back the clock Friday night to the 1950’s for their fundraiser. Proceeds from the “At the Hop” event which runs from 6 pm to midnight at Fast Freddies, 3130 Jackson Street, will go to Whispurring Hope Animal Rescue. Be sure to dress up in your finest 50’s gear and be ready to dance the night away. They will have prizes for couples and singles best dressed and best dance moves. There is a $10 per person registration at the door and registration from 6 to 8 pm to participate in the dance contest. There will raffle baskets, float themed speciality drinks and split the take games. The groups mission is to help animals that are lost, abandoned, abused, sick, injured or simply just can’t survive on their own and also work to help educate the public about the importance of spay/neuter and the proper care of animals. For more information on the organization, go to whispurringhoperescue.weebly.com.  or find them on https://www.facebook.com/whispurringhope

Dubuque County Bridge Replacement

The Dubuque County Road Department will start removing and replacing the bridge on Buncombe Road from Highway 61 to Lambe Road Thursday. The road will be completely closed at the location of the new bridge when the work begins at 7 am. The estimated duration of the culvert replacement project and road closure is 10 to 12 weeks, depending on weather.

Woman Struck and Killed

A vehicle hit and killed a pedestrian in Dubuque County Tuesday afternoon. The accident happened on Placid Road near Epworth around 4:40 p.m. 80-year-old William Conrad of Epworth was driving north on Placid Road when he hit 82-year-old Lois Smith who was crossing the road. Smith died from her injuries. The incident remains under investigation. The Sheriff’s Office did not list any charges.

Motorcycles Skid Crash

A pair of motorcycles wiped out after going through a slippery part of the highway in rural Galena. The Jo Davies County Sheriff’s Office responded to the area of Highway 20W, near Eagle Ridge Drive, at 2:53 pm Monday. Officers learned that two seperate motorcycles, driven by 37-year old Jeremy Hodges, of Beulah, Michigan and 40-year old Justin Hodges of Bellevue, Michigan, were travelling through a construction zone which has been recently laid with oil. Due to the rainy conditions, once both motorcycles struck the oil, they lost control causing them to lay down and skid across the road. Both units came to rest in the ditch on the south side of the roadway. Jeremy was transported to Midwest Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. The accident remains under investigation.

Dubuque City Council Closed Session

The Dubuque city council is still weighing the future of its’ top employee. The council held a closed session Monday night to discuss professional evaluations. Our coverage partners at KCRG TV say the session was likely about City Manager Mike Van Milligan’s contract. In July of last year the council approved Van Milligan’s contract, but hasn’t done so this year. On August 5th the council failed to have a closed session when Mayor Roy Buol and council members Ric Jones and David Resnick voted against it. Iowa law states a super-majority is required to have a closed session. Council members Kate Larsen, Bret Shaw, Louis Del Toro and Jake Rios were frustrated. Those same four council members requested another closed meeting Monday night before the first goal setting session was set to begin. The meeting lasted nearly two hours and all council members voted in favor of having the session. Another meeting was scheduled for today.

Dubuque Crack Dealer Headed To Prison

A Dubuque man is headed to federal prison after pleading guilty to crack cocaine charges. Court documents from Cedar Rapids say 31 year old Mohamed Haidar was sentenced to 188 months this week after pleading guilty in April to distribution of a controlled substance. Documents say Haidar admitted to selling crack cocaine to confidential informants on at least three occasions, including one deal that went down near a park and an elementary school. Haidar, a convicted felon also admitted to having a handgun that had the serial number scratched off. In addition to his prison sentence, Haidar will be placed on six years of probation once he is released.

Toilet Paper Pyramid Donation Drive

The Dubuque Hotel and Motel General Manager’s Association unique event to assist several area non-profits will be held Wednesday. The Association is hosting the first ever Toilet Paper Pyramid Donation Drive at Honkamp Hall, located in Steeple Square. From 9 am to 4 pm, both private and public businesses, as well as individuals, can drop off toilet paper donations and help build a 20-foot high pyramid to be donated back to four local non-profits organizations- Opening Doors, Dubuque Food Pantry, Dubuque Rescue Mission and the Dubuque Dream Center. Steeple Square, the former St. Mary’s Catholic Church, is located at 101 E 15th Street.

Tenant Provisions Deemed Unlawful

A Dubuque County judge says 19 provisions that a rental company makes tenants sign are unlawful. According to our coverage partners at KCRG TV, a group of tenants sued Greg and Bridget Prehm, saying their leases were full of unlawful provisions. Those provisions include requiring tenants to “sign-off” that a home is habitable, charging damage fees that exceed the actual damage and requiring automatic carpet cleaning. The Prehms have been designated as priority category landlords. That means they’ve had more than three citations issued for their properties within the last 12 months.

Resources Unite/General Assistance

The Dubuque County Board of Supervisors has turned over responsibilities to a local non-profit to help people in need with general assistance. The county would normally handle that task, but that will now be done by Resources Unite. The supervisors voted yesterday to give Resources Unite $30,000. Executive director Josh Jasper says they’ve been talking about the transition with the county for several years. Jasper says the transition will allow them to better support people in need.
Qualifying individuals will still have to apply for assistance through the county. Resources Unite signed a one year contract with the county, with the possibility of having that contract renewed in the next fiscal year.

Ernst Continues 99 County Tour

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst continues her 99 county tour of the state this week. On Wednesday morning the Republican from Red Oak will pay a visit to the Hingtgen Farms in Jackson County and hear from local farmers. From there she will travel to Clayton County where she will stop at Kendrick Incorporated in Edgewood. On her last stop, Ernst will hold a town hall in Butler County. The meeting will be held inside the Aplington-Parkersburg high school auditorium at 2:30. The public is invited to attend the town hall.

Dream Center-City Priority

At the recent City Council meeting, the Executive Director of a Dubuque non-profit made the pitch for more city support. Robert Kimble asked the council to consider adding funding the Dream Center to their list of priorities. Kimble says the Dubuque Dream Center is making good on their goal of impacting youth and strengthening families. Teachers and parents attended the meeting and several spoke to show support for an organization that is doing great things in the community. Parents talked about their children getting higher scores in school, displaying better social skills, and having been influenced in a positive way from the center’s activities. One mother of five children said it is much more than an after school program and her kids love it.

Lafayette County Rollover

A teenager was injured following a one vehicle rollover crash in Lafayette County Friday night. According to a press release issued Monday by the sheriff’s office, a vehicle driven by 17 year old Bailey Rodebaugh of Argyle was traveling south on Apple Grove Church Road at around 6:30, when she lost control while rounding a curve. The car left the road, entered a ditch and rolled landing upside down. EMS and the Argyle fire department treated Rodebaugh for non-life threatening injuries. The release doesn’t say if any charges will be filed.

Gas Line Purging Happens Tuesday

Inclement weather conditions Monday prevented crews from Black Hills Energy from purging natural gas lines in Dubuque County. The purging instead has been rescheduled for today at 9 am. A press release from the company says the purging will be done in the area of U.S. Highway 20’s intersection with North Cascade and Cottingham Roads just west of the city. The work is unrelated to pipeline maintenance in Jo Daviess County yesterday.

Natural Gas Smell

The Dubuque Police Department is reporting dozens of calls asking about the natural gas smell from residents and businesses in the eastern and central part of Dubuque. Authorities in Jo Davies County report that the smell is coming from Precision Pipeline who are blowing out a pipe between East Dubuque and Galena. Please do not call Dubuque County 911 to report this smell as they are getting inundated with calls at this time.

Central Sidewalk Reconstruction

Crews will begin work on the Central Avenue sidewalk reconstruction project this week. Crews will install 28 new ADA-compliant sidewalk curb ramps on Central’s intersection between 9th and 21st Street. The sidewalk improvements are being made in preparation of Central’s pavement resurfacing next spring according to a release from the city. On Monday contractors will begin sidewalk curb ramp reconstruction at the intersection of 9th and Central and 14th Street. As the work progresses, the contractors will continue on to other intersections on Central. Traffic control will be set up during construction and will be staged in two phases. Central will be reduced to one lane while work is being done on the east side of the street and to one lane when work is being done on the west side. Pedestrian access will be maintained during the project. However on-street parking will be impacted.

Seat Belt Compliance Enforcement Project

On Thursday, the Dubuque Police Department, along with the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Department, conducted a joint traffic enforcement project focused on seatbelt compliance in downtown Dubuque. Among the citations or warnings officers gave were 29 Seatbelt, 10 Proof of insurance, and 8 Equipment citations/warnings. There was also one arrest for driving while barred.

Growing Sustainable Communities Conference

Dubuque will host the largest and longest-standing sustainability conference in the Midwest this fall. The 12th annual Growing Sustainable Communities Conference will be held Thursday and Friday, Oct. 24-25, at the Grand River Center in the Port of Dubuque. Gina Bell, Sustainable Community Coordinator for the City of Dubuque, says the conference offers innovation, education, inspiration, and collaboration. Sessions will feature presenters with a wide range of expertise, including representatives from federal, state, and local governments. Bell says there will be business and academic leaders from across the country. In addition to conference sessions, the agenda includes two keynote luncheons, mobile workshops, a breakfast session, and more. To register or for more information, please visit www.GSCDubuque.com.

Dubuque Preservation Fair

The City of Dubuque’s Historic Preservation Commission and Heritage Works are teaming up for a special two-day event next month. Duane Hagerty, President and CEO of Heritage Works, says the Dubuque Preservation Fair on September 6th and 7th will provide skills and resources for historic building owners. The second day will feature several classes to educate participants on topics related to historic preservation and restoration. Hagerty says for people interested in saving on energy costs, or own or are thinking of buying a historic building, will find a pair of classes on day two that will be informative. The two-day fair will take place at Steeple Square, 101 E 15th Steet. The event is free but RSVP’s are encouraged. For more information or to register go to heritageworksdbq.com.

UnityPoint-Finley Sleep Center

If you are tired of being tired, you are not alone. The Center of Disease Control has labeled sleep deprivation a public health epidemic-with over 70 million adults suffering from a sleep disorder. Melissa Walsh, Clinical Director of the Eastern Iowa Sleep Center, which manages the Finley Sleep Center in Dubuque, says if you are suffering from any number of sleep problems your doctor could refer you for an in-lab or home sleep study. An in-lab sleep study at the Finley Sleep Center usually requires 6 1/2 to 8 1/2 hours in a special room for one, up to three or four nights, where a team of experts monitor your sleep. If your sleep problems are not serious enough to be referred for a study, there are some easy steps to help sleep better. Walsh says the blue light that’s emitted from electronic screens can delay the release of sleep-inducing melatonin. Naps can help with daytime drowsiness, but make sure they are not too long, 10 to 20 minutes work best. For more information about the Finley Sleep Center and sleep disorders, visit www.unitypoint.org and click on the services tab.

Dubuque Non-Profit Transfers Preschool

A Dubuque non-profit has to transfer management of a federal preschool program due to financial troubles. Operation New View manages the head start preschool program for Dubuque, Jackson and Delaware counties. Head start is a federal program that promotes the school readiness of children from low-income homes. In a press release the organization says its’ faced several years of financial management issues with the program. Last year the board of directors brought in an interim executive director to make changes. It finally concluded that the funding was inadequate to support the interest the board had for the program. Board chair Steve Drahozal says they’re transferring the program to Community Development Institute. He says the transition will be seamless for children and families in the program. In addition current staff will be offered to keep their jobs.

Sanders To Play Softball Game In Dyersville

Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has scheduled at softball game with the media at the Field of Dreams in Dyersville later this month. According to a press release from the Sander’s camp, the U.S. Senator from Vermont will lead his campaign staff against a group of local media in the game which will be played at 7 pm on August 19th. Sanders campaign manager says “at a time when members of the press are demonized by the president we hope to show goodwill and sportsmanship on the Field of Dreams.” Admission to the iconic movie site will open at 5 pm with the pre-game beginning at 6:30. Admission to the event is free and people will be allowed on a first-come-first serve basis.

Peosta Farm Family Honored At State Fair

A family that raises cattle near Peosta will be honored at this year’s Iowa State Fair. The Rick Demmer family, which has a cattle operation just south of Peosta is one of six families to receive the “2019 the Way We Live Award.” The Demmers were nominated for the award by their niece. The family will accept the award this morning during a ceremony inside the Paul Knapp Animal Learning Center in Des Moines.

What’s Next For Jackson County Jail

The Jackson County sheriff’s office isn’t sure what the county will do after voters again rejected a plan for a new jail. The county asked taxpayers to approve a six-and-a-half million dollar bond referendum for a new jail. It would have been 14,000 square feet with 28 beds. The measure needed a 60 percent majority approval, but failed by 105 votes. Chief deputy Steve Schroeder tells our coverage partners at KCRG it’s disappointing. He says the state jail inspector has told them they need a new facility. A local family also donated $300,000 to the county for the new jail. Schroeder says that money will now go back to the family.

Food Giveaway

Low-income residents in Dubuque County are being reminded of another food giveaway that will take place Saturday morning. The food giveaway starts at 7:30 at the Dubuque Area Labor Harvest Building at 423 West Locust Street. It will last until 9:30. Recipients are asked to bring their identification cards and a box for the food. The Saturday food giveaways are made possible through a grant from the Dubuque Racing Association and F.E.M.A..

Main Street Challenge Grant

Main Street Iowa has announced a partnership opportunity for Dubuque Main Street and local developers. Dan LoBianco, Executive Director of Dubuque Main Street, says downtown Dubuque historic rehabilitation projects often have funding gaps and these grants have helped several projects. There is both a maximum of $75,000 and minimum amount of $15,000 to be awarded per project. LoBianco says the process is pretty simple, with the first deadline of August 26th to submit a project summary. Eligible projects must be within the downtown project area. Interested parties should contact the Dubuque Main Street office at 563-588-4400 or dandubuquemainstreet.org for details.

Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical -Ice Cream Social

This weekend you can get a sweet treat and pay tribute to a long time supporter and contributor to an area historical society. The Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society will host an Ice Cream Social Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m.. Amy Alderman, Marketing Director, says the day will feature some cool events on the grounds of the Stillman Mansion. The Historical Society will honor its 2019 Heritage Hall of Fame Inductee, Ronn Toebaas, for his dedicated service to the organization. Alderman says Toebaas plays many roles at the Historical Society, including long-time writer, producer and director of the Cemetery Walk. Toebaas was not expecting the honor and say he considers his late wife, Alice, a big part of the reason he is being recognized. All are invited to this family-friendly event, which also includes $5 cups of Culvers, a bake sale and a 50/50 raffle. Casual or period attire are welcome. Bring your own lawn chairs or blankets. The Ice Cream Social is a fundraiser for the Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society. Learn more about the Galena & U.S. Grant Museum and the Historical Society at www.galenahistory.org.

Man Arrested After Heroin Overdose

A Dubuque man was arrested this week after a woman died from a suspected heroin overdose. Online court records say 28 year old Carl Watkins was arrested late Tuesday afternoon and charged with two felony counts of possession of heroin with intent to deliver. On Monday night police and paramedics found the woman dead of an apparent overdose from heroin. Watkins was arrested following a sting operation involving the woman’s phone. Investigators set up a buy with Watkins and he was taken into custody without incident in the 700 block of Wilson Street at around 4:20 Tuesday afternoon. He admitted to using drugs and selling marijuana and ecstasy on occasions, but not heroin.

Jackson Jail Vote Fails

Voters in Jackson County have again rejected a bond issue for a new jail. The 6.5 million dollar referendum needed 60-percent majority approval, but only received 57.5-percent. A total of 1,862 registered voters cast yes ballots, while 1,525 voted no. Last year voters rejected a similar referendum. Members of the county board of supervisors have been pushing to have a new jail built for several years. They say the current jail is outdated and has a number of deficiencies as well as safety concerns. The referendum called for the new 50 bed jail to be built on Main Street. In an unrelated issue voters chose a new auditor. Alisa Smith is the new Jackson County auditor. She replaces Brain Moore who resigned.

UPDATE: Dubuque Streets Reopen Following Gas Leak

Some streets that were closed on Dubuque’s north end because of a gas leak have reopened. Lt. Joe Messerich says the leak was reported at around 10:47 this morning in the 1800 block of Central Avenue. Police quickly closed access to Central at its’ intersection with 20th Street as well as 18th, 19th and 20th between Central and White Streets. The streets reopened shortly after noon.

Gas Leak On Central Avenue

Around 11 am this morning the Dubuque Fire Department responded to a report of a gas leak in the 1800 block of Central Ave. Area residents are being asked to evacuate until it’s deemed to be safe to returns to their residences. Central Ave. is closed at 20th Street and 18th and 19th Streets are closed between White St. and Central. White Street is open.

Dubuque Public Works Spraying

As weather permits starting Thursday, the City of Dubuque Public Works Department will spray weed control in various areas of rip-rap on the river side of Dubuque’s flood control system. Signs along the flood control system will identify the area being sprayed. With no weather delays, the project is expected to be completed by August 16th. The Public Works Department cautions people to keep their children and pets out of direct contact with the sprayed weeds for 24 hours after application.

Dubuque County Tornado

The National Weather Service has confirmed that a tornado touched down southwest of Dubuque. The service says the twister struck around 10:05 p.m. Monday. KCRG TV reports the tornado touched down three miles southwest of the Dubuque Regional Airport and was on the ground for more than a quarter of a mile. The tornado was 50 yards wide and had winds of about 100 m.p.h. making it an EF1 tornado. No injuries have been reported.

Finkenauer To Hold Vet Resource Fair

The Congresswoman who represents Iowa’s 1st district will be holding a Veterans Resource Fair in Dubuque this week. Abby Finkenauer will host the event on Friday from 3 to 6 pm at the Iowa National Guard facility on Old Highway Road. She says it will be an opportunity for all service members, veterans and their families to meet with agencies and organizations that provide services, support and job opportunities to veterans. Some of things veterans will receive assistance with include issues with Veterans Affairs benefits, scheduling appointments at the VA, information and applications for affordable housing in Dubuque, educational opportunities at area colleges and employment and career counseling. Participating organizations include the Veterans Freedom Center, Dubuque County Veterans Affairs, the Dubuque VA Clinic, the Small Business Development Center and area colleges and universities and senior living centers.

Center To Provide Domestic Violence Training

A domestic violence service center in Galena is offering domestic and sexual violence training this month for salon professionals in Illinois who want to have their licenses renewed. Robyn Davis, a domestic violence advocate at Riverview Center says a new state law requires all salon professionals to take a one-hour, one-time continuing education course to renew their cosmetology licenses. Some salon professionals may have been victims of domestic violence themselves. Davis says since the law went into effect, their center has been contacted by a number of salon professionals wanting to sign up for the training. She says you can call the center, or go on their Facebook page to learn more. Davis says Riverview can also come to a salon and provide training for the entire staff. The training dates are today, the 15th and two on the 19th. The cost is $20 per person.

Sonic Coming To Dubuque

Plans have been announced for a new Sonic restaurant in Dubuque. A release from Plaza 20 says the Sonic Drive-In will be built at the frontage road site in the 2600 block of Dodge Street, next to Harbor Freight Tools. Sara Kahle Hutchinson, vice-president of Plaza 20 says the restaurant will feature both traditional carhops, dine-in seating, a double drive-thru and outdoor patio. The Dubuque location will be owned and operated by Sonic franchisee Luke Flatin. In addition to the new Dubuque facility, Flatin owns three Sonic restaurants in Nebraska and one in Kansas. Flatin and his family recently moved from Nebraska to the Tri-State area. Construction will begin this month, with the restaurant slated to open in November.

Julien Lighting Project Completed

Two-way traffic on the Julien Dubuque Bridge is now open 24/7. For the past few months crews from the Iowa Department of Transportation have been installing new LED lights and poles on the bridge as part of its’ annual maintenance program. While the work was being done, the eastbound lane of traffic was closed to motorists from 7 am to 3 pm Monday through Friday. Crews completed the work late last week and both lanes are now open.

More Info Released On Golf Cart Incident

The Dubuque County sheriff’s office has released more information about a golf cart accident that left one man with serious head injuries over the weekend. 41 year old Bradley Wolfe of Dubuque was riding on the rear-facing seat on the back of a golf cart on 1ST Avenue NE in Epworth late Saturday night, when he fell off and struck his head on the pavement. Wolfe was initially taken to Mercy Hospital, before being transferred to U. of I. Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. He is currently in intensive care. When deputies arrived shortly after the incident, the golf cart and the driver had left the scene. Witnesses identified the driver as 40 year old Douglas Ernzen of Epworth. When located, Ernzen admitted to being the driver of the cart when Wolfe fell off. The press release doesn’t say if any charges have been filed yet. The investigation continues.

Grant County Motorcycle Wreck

A rural Lancaster couple was injured in a motorcycle crash in Grant County Monday afternoon. The sheriff’s office says 75 year old Leo Casper was traveling west on Highway 18 in Mount Hope, when traffic began slowing down in front of him. At the same time, his passenger, 69 year old Marlene Casper yelled “car”. But by this time, Leo had hit his brakes and the cycle went over the right side of the road, ejecting the couple. The motorcycle then slid about 150 feet and came to rest in the westbound lane traffic. The Caspers were taken to Grant Regional and treated for non-life threatening injuries. The accident is still under investigation.

Gun Store Owner Explains Iowa Laws

In the wake of two mass shootings that happened over the weekend, people may be wondering what are the gun laws in their state? In Dubuque, Gun Depot owner Ken Freiburger explains some firearms terms and what’s legal in Iowa. Among the items sold in his store are AR-15 style rifles. He says it’s a semi-automatic weapon, which means someone has to pull the trigger to fire each bullet. Freiburger says many people think the AR in AR-15 stands for assault rifle. That’s not true. He says assault rifles are something totally different. Freiburger says those rifles can be purchased in Iowa with special permits and licenses. Those guns can cost thousands of dollars, compared to an AR-15 that could cost less than 500. The rifles take what’s referred to as high capacity magazines. Those are also legal to purchase in Iowa. Freiburger notes that it’s illegal to modify a semi-automatic weapon to become automatic in Iowa.

Bee Branch Creek Railroad Culvert Project

The public is invited to attend a special kick-off on Thursday to celebrate the initiation of construction of the Bee Branch Creek Railroad Culvert phase of the Bee Branch Watershed Flood Mitigation Project. Mayor Roy Buol says the Bee Branch Creek Railroad Culvert is a critical phase of the larger project at the Bee Branch. The installation of the culverts under the Canadian Pacific Railway tracks along Garfield Ave will allow storm water to drain more efficiently from the upstream portion of the Bee Branch Creek to the downstream portion and 16th St. Detention Basin. The ceremony Thursday will begin at 4 p.m. in the Lower Bee Branch corridor at the end of the paved trail north of East 16th Street. The program will include remarks by City staff, project funding partners, and elected officials.

Finkenauer Dyersville Farm Visit

Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer and Federal Communications Commissioner, Jessica Rosenworcel, paid a visit to the Dyersville farm of Jeff Pape Monday to discuss the need to expand broadband access in Eastern Iowa. Finkenauer, who serves on the Rural Broadband Task Force, says it was exciting to visit a farm to learn firsthand how important it is to farmers to have good broadband access. Finkenauer says if you are not a farmer, you may not realize how precision agriculture tools help farmers like Jeff Pape grow their operations. Eastern Iowa farms, especially ones near the Mississippi River, have the bluffs to deal with that make broadband access tougher to rely on. FCC Commissioner Rosenworcel says the future of farming will be dependent on having the best broadband coverage possible in order to be successful. Finkenauer has introduced the Broadband Transparency and Accountability Act in Congress to address the digital divide through inproved broadband mapping.

Woman Seriously Hurt In UTV Crash

A northwest Illinois woman, who was a passenger on a UTV, was seriously injured after the driver rolled the vehicle in southwest Wisconsin Sunday night. The Lafayette County sheriff’s office say 54 year old Richard Montoya of Warren was driving east on Dunbarton Road in Shullsburg when he ran through a stop sign. He then over-corrected and rolled the vehicle several times, which came to rest on the passenger’s side. His passenger, 52 year old Candace Montoya also of Warren was seriously injured. She was transported to Southwest Health Center with serious injuries. Her condition has not been released. Richard Montoya was charged with OWI causing injury. He was also cited for careless operation of a UTV.

National Night Out In Dubuque

A large group of people are expected to gather at Comiskey Park in Dubuque, for National Night Out tonight. National Night Out is designed to shine a spotlight on neighborhood crime and crime prevention and bring the community together. Lt. Joe Messerich with the Dubuque police department says there will be food and games for all who attend. National Night Out has been held in Dubuque every year for over a decade, and mother nature is expected to cooperate according to the KCRG First Alert Forecast. Following the event, the movie Incredibles 2 will be shown outside the community center. The event runs from 6 until 8 pm.

Geisler Brothers Fire

Dubuque fire fighters were at the scene of a fire at Geisler Brothers Saturday morning. Fire Chief Rick Steines says crews responded to the fire at around 9 Saturday morning in the 1500 block of Radford Road. When crews arrived, the building was full of smoke. The fire was quickly extinguished and no injuries were reported. It’s reported that the fire began in an area in the rear of Dubuque Steel Manufacturing. Neither Dubuque Steel or Geisler Brothers was open at the time. Steines says the probable cause was some rags which ignited other combustibles in a trash can. There was no structural damage to Geisler, but there was significant smoke damage. The estimated cost of that damage is not known at this time and the investigation continues.

Man Charged With Assault After Racial Incident

A Dubuque man, who will be back in court today was arrested Friday after police say he yelled out a racial slur at a group of people and then pointed and fired off a roman candle at the group. Court documents say 48 year old John Daniel is charged with assault while displaying a dangerous weapon and violation of individual rights. The incident happened in early July in the 2300 block of Central Avenue. A group of people, including a 15 year old boy were shooting off fireworks in the area, when Daniel allegedly shouted a racial slur at the boy and told them to stop. The boy went inside an apartment and came back out with his mother, who asked Daniel to talk to her about the slur. Documents say Daniel refused to talk to the woman, flipped her off and shot a roman candle towards the woman and others. No one was injured as the group fled back into the apartment. After being questioned by police, Daniel admitted to shooting off the roman candle, but says he wasn’t intentionally trying to hit anyone.