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News Releases - General Info
Written by Mary Neubauer   
Monday, 16 January 2012 15:26

DES MOINES, Iowa – A Davenport graduate student is making plans to pay off her student loans and make investments for retirement all at the same time, now that she’s won a $1 million lottery prize.

“It said $40K for 25 years and I just hyperventilated, basically,” Ashley Smrcina said as she claimed her prize Thursday afternoon at Iowa Lottery headquarters in Des Moines. “I couldn’t breathe and I was crying at the same time. I was staring at it and crying.”

Smrcina, 22, who is working on her master’s degree in social work at St. Ambrose University, said she was doing research for a school paper Wednesday night when she decided to take a break and buy a lottery ticket. And that’s when her winning streak started.

She won a $20 prize on a $5 scratch ticket and decided to use some of her winnings to buy a $10 ticket. She won $300 that time and said the clerk at the store kidded her, saying she had no choice but to buy a $20 ticket. She chose the “Lifetime Riches” game and won its top prize.

“It feels surreal,” said Smrcina, who moved to Iowa from Michigan in July. “I can’t believe it. We’ve been here for such a short time. It still gives me goosebumps.”

Smrcina bought her winning tickets at Express Lane Gas & Food Mart, 1909 N. Harrison St. in Davenport.

She said that she especially looks forward to the fact that her lottery winnings will make her student loans “just disappear.”

“I’m really excited about that. It takes a lot of weight off my shoulders,” she said.

Lifetime Riches is a $20 scratch game. When players match any of “your numbers” to any “winning number” in the play area on each ticket, they win the prize shown for that play area. If they find a “star” symbol, they win the prize shown instantly, and if they find the “5X” symbol, they win five times the prize shown for that symbol.

Smrcina claimed the sixth top prize of $1 million in Lifetime Riches, leaving two $1 million prizes still up for grabs in the game. Players who win the top prize have the option of receiving it in annuitized payments over time or as a one-time, lump-sum payment.

Winners who choose the annuity option will receive $40,000 per year for a period of 25 years. If the winner chooses to receive the lump-sum payment, he/she will receive $650,000 before taxes. Smrcina chose to receive her winnings in a lump-sum payment.

“Last night, I just kept staring at it. The ticket was almost all rubbed off from my sweaty hands and my tears,” said Smrcina, who works at Big Brothers & Big Sisters. “I don’t think that this is real. I don’t know when it’s going to sink in.”

Since the lottery’s start in 1985, its players have won more than $2.8 billion in prizes while the lottery has raised more than $1.3 billion for the state programs that benefit all Iowans.

Today, lottery proceeds in Iowa have three main purposes: They provide support for veterans, help for a variety of significant projects through the state General Fund, and backing for the Vision Iowa program, which was implemented to create tourism destinations and community attractions in the state and build and repair schools.

Prize Details
Top Prize:                                            $1 million
Chosen to receive as:                          $650,000 lump-sum payment
Federal withholding:                            $162,500 (25 percent)
State withholding:                                $32,500 (5 percent)

Net amount:                                         $455,000



RELEASE: Braley Statement on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Friday, 13 January 2012 14:17

Braley Statement on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 


Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) released the following statement in recognition of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, which will be observed on Monday, January 16th:

“Dr. King’s values and work in the face of violence, indifference, and entrenched prejudices remind us that the work of one person willing to speak up against injustice can change the world.  Because of Dr. King’s work, his dream of a nation where people are judged by the content of their character, rather than the color of their skin, is closer to fruition.

“While that dream is yet to be fulfilled, Dr. King’s legacy lives on in our hearts and minds.  Dr. King stood up for people who didn’t have a voice when others failed to stand up for them.  His life should inspire all of us to fight for those among us—of any color, background, or creed—who’ve had their voices taken away.”

# # #

Hawkeye Caucus Weekly Update PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Hawkeye Caucus   
Friday, 13 January 2012 14:13

Iowa Flood Center expands stream sensor network in Iowa


The Iowa Flood Center, based at the University of Iowa, has taken advantage of the state's unusually mild start to winter by continuing to install a second batch of 50 electronic stream stage sensors across Iowa. Now fully installed, the new instruments bring to 100 the number of affordable stream sensors purchased by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and installed on the downstream side of bridges by the Iowa Flood Center.


Developed in part by students at the center, the sensors use sonar to measure the distance to the water’s surface and send reports every 15 minutes to a database at the center’s UI headquarters so that Iowans have access to real-time monitoring of water levels in Iowa’s rivers and streams. A river and stream-level map of the data is available on the center's website (


Flood center researchers say that Iowa, with its thousands of bridges, could benefit from an even wider network of information if more sensors were put into wider use. Such a system would enhance safety in the state by improving the ability to monitor stream levels and predict flooding, and by improving public preparedness.


In addition to developing a system of flood sensors and maps, the Iowa Flood Center plans to build a network to detect and record soil moisture content -- another factor involved in flooding.



Looking to the future, staff from the nearly three-year-old Iowa Flood Center are preparing a new proposal to the National Science Foundation to establish a $25 million National Flood Center. The UI’s experience with the Iowa Flood Center will make the proposal especially competitive. If funded, this new center will help establish Iowa as a national leader in flood-related research and education.


Newborn screening is the healthy first step for Iowa babies


A few drops of blood collected shortly after birth can mean the difference between a healthy future and a lifelong battle with chronic, debilitating conditions.  The State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa helps to make that difference for the approximately 40,000 babies born each year in the state.


Each year, 40 or more Iowa babies are identified with a congenital condition that, if left undetected and untreated, could result in irreversible neurological delays, coma or death.  Instead, they have the healthiest start possible in life.  How does this happen?

Shortly after the birth, six tiny drops of blood are collected from the baby’s heel.  From those few drops, the Hygienic Laboratory identifies more than 30 different conditions, including PKU and cystic fibrosis.


It’s all part of the Iowa Neonatal and Metabolic Screen Program that helps give babies the best possible start in life.


Like most things with newborns, time is of the essence.  The tiny drops of blood collected at birth must reach the Hygienic Lab’s Ankeny facility within 24 hours of to ensure the highest degree of accuracy.  A statewide courier system picks up the samples and delivers them to the laboratory, which conducts testing around the clock.

Inter-religious Discussions PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Jo Cohrs   
Friday, 13 January 2012 14:06

Inter-religious discussions with

Imam Saad Baig, Islamic Center of the Quad Cities

Rabbi Tamar Grimm, Congregation Beth Israel at the Tri City Jewish Center

Fr. Mike Schaab, St. Pius X Catholic Church



A Year in the Life: Calendars, Holy Days and Celebrations at the Mosque on Jan. 19

Islamic Center of Quad Cities, 6005 34th Ave., Moline

A Look at our Books: Sacred Texts and Scriptures at the Synagogue on Feb. 16 

Tri City Jewish Center, 2715 30th St., Rock Island

Womb to Tomb: Life Cycle Events and Rites of Passage at the Church on Mar. 15 

St. Pius X Catholic Church, 2502 29th Ave., Rock Island

Plan to join us on Thursdays from 7-9 pm.


All are welcome!


For more information, contact Barb Roedel  793-7356.

Iowa Supreme Court Opinions PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Iowa Judicial Branch   
Friday, 13 January 2012 14:04
January 13, 2012

Notice: The opinions posted on this site are slip opinions only. Under the Rules of Appellate Procedure a party has a limited number of days to request a rehearing after the filing of an opinion. Also, all slip opinions are subject to modification or correction by the court. Therefore, opinions on this site are not to be considered the final decisions of the court. The official published opinions of the Iowa Supreme Court are those published in the North Western Reporter published by West Group.

Opinions released before April 2006 and available in the archives are posted in Word format. Opinions released after April 2006 are posted to the website in PDF (Portable Document Format).   Note: To open a PDF you must have the free Acrobat Reader installed. PDF format preserves the original appearance of a document without requiring you to possess the software that created that document. For more information about PDF read: Using the Adobe Reader.

For your convenience, the Judicial Branch offers a free e-mail notification service for Supreme Court opinions, Court of Appeals opinions, press releases and orders. To subscribe, click here.

NOTE: Copies of these opinions may be obtained from the Clerk of the Supreme Court, Judicial Branch Building, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50319, for a fee of fifty cents per page.

No. 10–0218


No. 11–0886


No. 11–1570


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