Civic News & Info
Harkin: $1 Million Coming to Iowa to Repair Flood-Damaged Roads PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Sen. Tom Harkin   
Thursday, 26 August 2010 07:25
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today announced that $1 million in quick release emergency funding is coming to Iowa to help repair roads damaged by the rain and flooding of June and July, 2010.  The funds, which the Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration has made available to the Iowa Department of Transportation, will be used to restore essential traffic byways and protect roads from further damage.  

“June and July's storms severely damaged our roads, stopping many Iowans from traveling and limiting our ability to deliver goods and services to the people who need them,” Harkin said. “This funding will help repair and restore our roadways and get us back on track.”

On June 1, 2010 and continuing, severe storm systems moved across Iowa causing damage, flooding and related impacts to the Federal-aid highway system in Iowa.  Typical damage included shoulder erosion, pavement undermining, landslides, and bridge and road closures on both the state and local system.  Flooding forced the closure of several primary roadway systems and caused substantial damage.  The secondary road system also suffered substantial damage.  Governor Culver proclaimed 51 of Iowa’s counties to be a disaster area, along with requesting a Presidential Declaration for an additional 7 counties not included in the Governor’s proclamation.

Grassley, Issa Seek Information About FOIA Requests PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Grassley Press   
Thursday, 26 August 2010 07:22

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

WASHINGTON --- Senator Chuck Grassley and Representative Darrell Issa have asked Inspectors General from 29 government agencies to review whether federal agencies are taking new steps to limit responses to Freedom of Information Act requests from lawmakers, journalists, activist groups and watchdog organizations.

The request from Grassley and Issa is based on what was reported earlier this summer about Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano requiring FOIA requests to be given more scrutiny, depending on who the requestor was.  The Inspectors General also have been asked to determine the extent to which political appointees are systematically made aware of FOIA requests and their role in decision-making.

“The question is to what extent an effort has been made to inhibit the accountability that’s established through the Freedom of Information Act with new hurdles or by making politically appointed officials part of the FOIA review process within the various federal agencies.  These requirements could delay disclosures, and that’s a disservice to the public,” Grassley said.

“Getting through a non-partisan bureaucracy to obtain information through FOIA is difficult enough without political appointees inappropriately injecting partisan political considerations into the process,” said Rep. Issa.  “There’s a clear public interest in finding out if what happened at Homeland Security is also taking place in other federal agencies.  This inappropriate interference by political appointees in FOIA requests further undermines President Obama’s promise to create an unprecedented level of openness in government.”

Click here to read a copy of the letter that was sent to the 29 Inspectors General, including those from the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Elections Assistance Commission, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Federal Trade Commission, the General Services Administration, the Government Accountability Office, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Archives and Records Administration, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Office of Personnel Management, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Small Business Administration, the Social Security Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Department of Interior, the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Treasury, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

LIHEAP- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Molli Nickerson   
Tuesday, 24 August 2010 09:34

ROCK ISLAND, MERCER, HENRY County- “Do you need help with your utility bills?”

Beginning September 1, 2010 Elderly and disabled citizens of Rock Island, Henry, and Mercer county may be eligible to receive assistance with your utility bill, or re-connection assistance if you have been disconnected or are in imminent threat of disconnection. Please call your local Project Now office on or  after September 1, 2010 to make an appointment.

Beginning October 1, 2010- Any low-income household that has been disconnected, or is under imminent threat of disconnection may qualify for assistance in getting their utilities re-connected. Please call your local Project Now office on or after October 1, 2010 to make an appointment. In addition LIHEAP furnace assistance is available to households whose existing heating systems are not operational or have been red-tagged by their utility company, also beginning October 1, 2010

Beginning November 1, 2010- LIHEAP assistance programs will be available to all low-income households throughout Rock Island, Henry, and Mercer counties. Please call your local project now office on or after November 1, 2010 to make an appointment.

Assistance will be available through May 31, 2011 or until funding is exhausted. Eligibility requirements apply, you must be at or below 150% of poverty.

Please bring with you:
• Photo ID Card
• Resident Alien card
• 30 days proof of gross income for all household members
• Valid Social Security card
• Medical Card/Link Card

Income includes:
Wages (Full, part-time, and temporary employment); Social Security income; SSA/SSI (Letter or print out); Unemployment (30 days/check stubs or print out);
Child Support/Alimony; Pension; TANF/ AABD; township; VA Benefits; Workers compensation; Rental Income; Self employment income (Ledger, check stub, receipts needed);Income/Co-payments received for childcare

Project Now Office Locations:
Rock Island Office- 309-793-6391
Moline Office- 309-764-8092
Henry County- 309-852-4565
Mercer County- 309-582-2644

*In addition to office appointments, Project NOW staff will be visiting housing complexes and high rises throughout the community. Please see your apartment manager for dates and times.

Barney, Baker to head Quad Cities Chamber PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Illinois QC C of C   
Thursday, 19 August 2010 07:39

The Quad Cities Chamber Board of Directors this afternoon named Tara Barney Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the new Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce and Rick Baker the President & Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the new organization. Chamber directors Steve Bahls, John Roche and Ken Koupal made the announcement after informing staff that Barney and Baker would join forces to lead the new organization. 

We hope you will join us in congratulating Tara and Rick on their leadership roles and thank them for their  commitment to the Quad Cities region.  With Tara's background in economic development and Rick's expertise in chamber operations, Quad City businesses will have an unbeatable combination of talent and skills working on their behalf.

For additional information on today's announcement, visit the website at

The Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center Expansion/Renovation Groundbreaking PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Civic News & Info
Written by Gerald Jones   
Thursday, 19 August 2010 07:37
The King Center builds community, nurtures dreams and changes lives each and every day. Located in a distressed area, within a 2 mile radius of the Center more than 4,100 households live in poverty and have lives characterized by:
  • A 30% high school graduation rate with only 7% gaining a college degree
  • A teenage mother birth rate of 180 per 1,000 versus an Illinois average of 42/1,000
  • Approximately 600 youth with unsupervised time during high-risk evening hours
The Center’s presence allows families striving to overcome the challenges of daily life an opportunity for hope and achievement.

The Project – The King Center’s programs and services have evolved to meet the needs of the community, but the building must be renovated and expanded to provide more space for youth services including substance abuse prevention, job training, mentoring and after school activities. This facility will be able to serve over 200 youth and a community room will have capacity for 400. These will be spaces designed for the use intended versus the makeshift method the Center has been restricted to for 35 years.

Summary of Costs - Construction, renovation and related expenses are projected to total $3.6 million. To date we have secured $3.37 million toward our goal including funding from the City of Rock Island, the State of Illinois, the federal government and gifts and pledges from donors. Community support has been encouraging.

We must raise a little less than $230,000 to fully fund the project. We hope the community will choose to support the King Center with a contribution via pledge (payable over the next three years), online donation (, or by calling the King Center at (309) 732 - 2999. We are able to accept
cash, check, or credit card donations and all are tax deductable.

This financial support will directly impact the lives of the children and families the Center serves for decades to come.

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