Agriculture, alternative energy, and job creation were on the agenda of presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney during a visit Friday to Council Bluffs.
The former Massachusetts Governor met with a group of western Iowa farmers, then held a rally in Bayliss Park. It was his first visit to Iowa since May 15th. Romney said the national debt national debt is an issue that will plague Americans for generations to come, and it’ll effect economic growth.
Corps officials updated the status of levee repairs during a conference call Tuesday. Last summer’s Missouri River flooding caused significant damage in Nebraska and western Iowa. The Corps’ Omaha District has 11 levee repair projects underway, with $99 million dollars in repairs complete.
The state held its first-in-the-nation presidential nominating caucus in January. Voters will have Congressional representatives to choose from in four districts, instead of five, due to redistricting. UNO political scientist Paul Landow doesn’t expect that to boost voter turnout based on primary election results in other states, including Nebraska.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss compiles the Mid-America Business Conditions report. The business conditions index, which measures overall economic health, slipped to 57.6 in May from 60 in April. However, it continues to show economic growth in the region.
The Iowa DOT has taken public comments on the rail study since February, and held public meetings throughout the state. It’s part of a five-step process that could lead to passenger rail travel through Iowa.
A public meeting is scheduled Thursday in Council Bluffs about the passenger rail study. The combination state-federal project seeks to identify a “reasonable and feasible” high-speed passenger rail route between Chicago and Omaha. The preferred alternative route travels through the Quad Cities, Iowa City, and Des Moines, following I-80.
VA of Nebraska-Western Iowa officials estimate several thousand veterans in their service territory are homeless or living below the poverty line.
The VA of Nebraska-Western Iowa is partnering with Omaha’s Together Inc. to offer a food pantry for homeless and low-income veterans. The pantry opened April 18th and will operate on the first and third Wednesdays of each month.
VA of Nebraska-Western Iowa spokesman Will Ackerman says they hope to provide another resource to veterans struggling to get by.
Cleanup is underway in southwest Iowa after a tornado left a half-mile-wide damage path in Thurman.
The National Weather Service in Omaha says the tornado touched down two miles north of Percival, Iowa, and continued in to Thurman just after 5:30 PM Saturday. The tornado left a ten-mile long path of damage before lifting just south of Tabor.