The American Cancer Society's Discovery Shop in Cumberland Square invites you to bargain shop for a cause! Sunday, February 6th will be our annual super clearance sale EVERYTHING in the store will be half price.

Mark you calendars and stop in to grab all of the bargains that you can find and be back home long before the big game starts. We are clearing out the floor to make room for all of the new and beautiful donations that we have recently been receiving. With the new things that we will be putting out on the floor starting Monday, February 7th the bargains will continue long after the game is over.

The Discovery Shop is an upscale resale shop selling gently used items donated by the community and staffed by over 100 volunteers. All clothing is cleaned and ironed before it is sold and dry cleaning is donated by Burke's Dry Cleaners. Proceeds go to the American Cancer Society for cancer research, education, patient services and advocacy.

Donations are accepted anytime the shop is open and a tax receipt is always available. Hours are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 am to 5 pm., Thursday from 10 am to 7 pm., and Saturday from 10 am to 4 pm.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Grassley: Proposed Dust Rules Would Cause Significant Harm to Rural America

WASHINGTON - Senator Chuck Grassley is pressing the Environmental Protection Agency to make a good faith effort to review industry comments, studies, and economic analysis on the impact of proposed rules on dust.  Grassley this week sent a letter to administrator Lisa Jackson expressing his concern that excessive dust control measures would slow economic development and impose significant costs on family agriculturalists.

Grassley said that President Barack Obama's recent directive for each agency to review its rules and regulations with an eye toward economic harm should help bring to light the detrimental impact these rules could have on the rural economy.  Instead, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Environmental Protection Agency stated "that it was 'confident' it wouldn't need to alter a single current or pending rule."

"The EPA's attitude toward the President's directive is unfortunate.  Once again, the agency seems completely oblivious to the huge impact the rules and regulations it releases have on the general public and agriculture in particular," Grassley said.  "It defies common sense that the EPA would regulate that a farmer must keep the dust from his combine between his fence rows."

The EPA currently is considering approval of the Second Draft Policy Assessment for Particulate Matter (released on July 8, 2010).   If approved, the most stringent and unparalleled regulation of dust in the nation's history would be placed on rural America.  The current levels of 150ug/m3 would be revised down to 65-85 ug/m3.

Here's a copy of the text of the letter Grassley sent to Jackson.

January 25, 2011

The Honorable Lisa Jackson

Administrator

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW

Washington, DC 20460

 

Dear Administrator Jackson,

On January 18, 2011, President Obama signed an Executive Order which required federal agencies to review all regulations, taking into account the costs and excessive burdens they might impede on businesses.  A Wall Street Journal editorial reported that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), less than a week after the President signed this Order, stated "that it was 'confident' it wouldn't need to alter a single current or pending rule."

Last July, I and twenty of my colleagues wrote to you with our continued concerns regarding EPA's actions in its review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) as required every five years under the Clean Air Act.  I would like to stress again that if approved, the Second Draft Policy Assessment (PA) for Particulate Matter (PM) released on July 8, 2010 would establish the most stringent and unparalleled regulation of dust in our nation's history revising current levels of 150ug/m3 down to 65-85 ug/m3.  Our letter encouraged EPA to consider maintaining the primary and secondary standards, or in the alternative, consider different PM indicators.  We also asked that the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee focus attention on EPA's choice to not adopt a PM10-2.5 standard.

As I have continually advocated over the years, lowering these PM standards could have devastating and burdensome effects on farmers and ranchers across the United States. Excessive dust control measures could be imposed on agricultural operations which would only slow economic development and impose significant costs on our nation's family agriculturalists.

I recognize the release of the final Policy Assessment has been delayed, but may be released at any time, but I am not aware if EPA also intends to delay release of the proposed rule, release of which was originally planned for February 2011.

I am concerned that EPA has pre-judged its review of existing and pending rules.  The President has now required that cost considerations on businesses, including farmers and ranchers, be taken into account.  I strongly encourage EPA in good faith to review industry comments, studies, and economic analysis as they become available on this critical issue.

Thank you for consideration of this request.

Sincerely,

Chuck Grassley

 -30-

"Emotional story-telling lyrics, charismatic stage presence, and hilarious anecdotes." - June Wulff, The Boston Globe

David Berkeley released his new album Some Kind of Cure this week and everywhere you look, the media is singing his praises.  WXPN featured a track online before his on-air performance on Wednesday, and Spinner and AOL are currently hosting FULL CD LISTENING PARTIES of the album.  David also performed "George Square" on NBC's "The 10! Show" in Philly yesterday.

While living in a 35-person village in the mountains of Corsica, David Berkeley wrote the most haunting and powerful music of his life.  Upon returning to the U.S., he began recording a collection of these songs and the resulting work is Some Kind of Cure.

Along with his album, Berkeley has written an accompanying book of short stories entitled 140 Goats and a Guitar, the Stories behind Some Kind of Cure. The book tells the stories of how each song was written while adapting to his surroundings, missing home, and trying to survive, all with his wife and 2 year old child.  They're both heartfelt and humorous, not unlike David's performances.  More info on the book can be found at http://www.davidberkeley.com/book.

David will be in DAVENPORT, IA on SUN, FEB 20th at BORDERS at 3pm for a FREE reading, performance and signing.
"There's a quiet beauty in David Berkeley's voice that carries a strength with it. He's a storyteller. He's a heart breaker.
He's at once a gusting tornado and an elegant whisper."
- SF Chronicle

"You could call what David Berkeley does folk-pop, but it's really a kind of musical alchemy - a profound sensibility that's somehow radio-ready.
He plays finely crafted songs off his sensational new album Some Kind of Cure."
- Philadelphia Inquirer

"David Berkeley's new album is some kind of wonderful for fans of the written and recited word.
- Driftwood Magazine

DAVID BERKELEY @ BORDERS
4000 East 53rd St
Davenport, IA
563-359-7830
http://www.borders.com/online/store/StoreDetailView_292
ALL AGES - FREE

Funding comes in addition to the more than $84 million in funding announced in August

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced today that the State of Iowa will receive an additional  $8,040,652 in 2008 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) disaster dollars from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  The funding can be used to assist Iowans still struggling to rebuild their homes and businesses, as well as for general economic recovery purposes in the wake of 2008's natural disasters. Today's funding comes in addition to the $84,126,989 that was announced in August, bringing the total CDBG dollars for Iowa to $92,167,641.  Nationwide a total of $311 million was allocated - close to 30 percent of which went to Iowa - based on mitigation efforts using CDBG disaster resources in various 2008 disaster impacted states.  As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, Harkin led the fight to have these funds appropriated in the months after the 2008 floods and tornados and he successfully worked to avoid having the whole $311 million pot of funds rescinded in mid 2010.  

"In the time since the floods of 2008, Iowans have shown their perseverance and have made great strides to rebuild our state. There is, however, still more to do," said Harkin.  "I am pleased that what seems like a technical recalculation at the federal level means real, tangible funding for Iowa's rebuilding efforts. With this kind of federal support and the 'can do' attitude of our state, we will rebuild an even brighter future for Iowa."

This additional funding became available because of a recalculation of the amount of CDBG resources allocated to mitigation, resulting in Iowa's proportion of the total mitigation effort increasing.  Of the $6.1 billion in CDBG disaster funding appropriated in September 2008 for 2008 disasters, $311 million was put aside by HUD for this mitigation allocation.

Date: February 3, 2011
Time: 4 PM
Location: Figge Art Museum, 225 W 2nd St, Davenport, IA

 

Representatives of the Quad City Symphony Orchestra and the artists who created the 14 Midori-themed painted violins will be on hand to talk about the painted violins and the upcoming Midori residency. The full collection of beautifully painted and creatively re-sculpted violins will be on display for photographers, videographers, and public viewing.

From April 13 to 17, world-renowned violinist Midori will participate in a wide range of activities tailored by the QCSO to optimize local involvement of the youth orchestra, including the Bows and Bridges Strings Festival, a Music Advocacy Luncheon with local legislators, a performance before over 6,000 students with the Quad City Youth Symphony Orchestra at their annual Symphony Day, and a performance of Beethoven's Violin Concerto at the QCSO's Masterworks season finale of April 16 & 17.

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA - Jan. 28, 2011 - Iowa Farm Bureau members support many aspects of Governor Branstad's $6.1 billion budget, starting with the $160 million in direct property tax relief to Iowans, an issue that Farm Bureau members have sought from previous administrations and legislatures.

"The Governor, just like farmers, has made several tough decisions in order to correct our budget shortfalls.  We all need to live within our means and our government is no exception," said Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF) President Craig Lang.  "Our members across the state agree that small businesses are a key to Iowa's vital economic growth.   Supporting them will help make us more attractive for new employers and their jobs."

Branstad, who was designated as a Farm Bureau Friend of Agriculture in the fall campaign, also noted that strong growth in agriculture provides Iowa with a unique opportunity to fix its budget.  Property tax reform has long been the cornerstone of budget reform heralded by IFBF, because in the past decade, Iowa property taxes have soared by $1.59 billion, or 60 percent.

Branstad said that while tax policy reforms can help Iowa compete for new jobs, a bureaucracy that  "fails to understand the critical relationship between burdensome regulation and job creation" can undo Iowa's economic progress.  IFBF agrees and has long called for measures to strengthen the legislative oversight of Iowa's rule-making process.  "Placing unnecessary regulatory and financial hurdles in front of responsible Iowa farmers impacts the success and diversity of Iowa's important ag sector," said Lang.

Iowa's largest grassroots farm organization has long supported the state's academic and athletic programs.  "Education has always been a top priority for Farm Bureau.  The funding of education is shared between the State of Iowa and property taxpayers, and we stress the importance of the state funding their commitment to education," said Lang.  Branstad's 2012 budget calls for fully funding the school budget, which last year was underfunded by $156 million, leaving local school districts to levy additional property taxes to fill the void.

IFBF members look forward to working with lawmakers and the Governor during this legislative session to give Iowans what they want: a fiscally-responsible budget and a real chance for Iowa's statewide economic growth.

-30-

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced today that he will hold a field hearing in Iowa to discuss the importance of providing adequate and responsible funding for critical education, health, labor and other initiatives. The panel will specifically discuss the ways in which federal funding has made a positive impact in Iowa by helping give Iowans the education and skills they need to find jobs.  Harkin is chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies, which is responsible for funding these important programs.  The hearing titled "Preserving America's Economic Security" will be held Saturday, February 5, 2011, at 12:30pm at the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, University of Northern Iowa, 8201 Dakota Street, Cedar Falls.

Witnesses will include :  

The Honorable William Dotzler, State Senator (D-Senate District 11)

Dr. Benjamin J. Allen, President, University of Northern Iowa

Mr. Gerald Nelson, Field Office Manager, Social Security Administration, Waterloo, Iowa

Ms. Kim Young-Kent, Executive Director, Tri-County Head Start, Waterloo, Iowa

Dr. Jerry Durham, Chancellor and Professor of Nursing, Allen College of Nursing

The Reverend Mark A. Anderson, Assistant to the Bishop, Northeastern Iowa Synod, Waverly, Iowa

Mr. Jonathan Keniston, Student, Hawkeye Community College

The Multi-National Force Soldiers Are Located in Sinai, Egypt

SPRINGFIELD, IL (01/28/2011)(readMedia)-- The Illinois Army National Guard's (ILARNG) 2nd Battalion, 123rd Field Artillery Regiment deployed to Sinai, Egypt is not being affected by the riots in Cairo except for the interruption of commercial communication.

The nearly 440 Illinois Soldiers are part of the Multinational Force and Observers, an international peacekeeping force overseeing the terms of the 1979 peace treaty between Israel and Egypt. The MFO's bases are hundreds of miles away from Cairo, Egypt where the rioting is taking place.

The interruption of commercial communication is affecting ILARNG Soldiers' ability to quickly communicate via email and telephone with their loved ones here in Illinois. Military communication channels between the MFO and the Illinois National Guard are still open and are being used to keep families abreast of the situation.

The rioting is not directed toward the MFO or the ILARNG Soldiers. The Illinois National Guard Soldiers stationed in Sinai are professional, highly trained and able to respond to a variety of incidents. If the situation in Egypt changes the MFO and ILARNG is capable of taking appropriate measures to safeguard American troops.

The 123rd Field Artillery deployed to Sinai in May 2010 and will return home May 2011.

For more information please contact the Public Affairs Office at 217-761-3569 or ngilstaffpao@ng.army.mil.

ROCK ISLAND, IL (01/28/2011)(readMedia)-- From Feb. 18-25 the Augustana Choir will perform a variety of choral music in eight concerts throughout Illinois and northern Missouri. They will end with a ninth "home" concert on March 11 in Davenport, Iowa, for the Quad-City community.

The choir will begin its Homeland Tour in Galesburg, Ill., and then travel to Springfield, Ill.; Chesterfield, Mo.; Decatur, Ill.; Bloomington, Ill.; Naperville, Ill.; St. Charles, Ill.; Rockford, Ill.; and Davenport, Iowa.

Augustana Choir members from your area include :

Kaleigh Wall from Eldridge, Iowa, a sophomore at Augustana majoring in music.

Kjerstin Hurty from Moline, Ill., a sophomore at Augustana majoring in business and music.

Martha Ade from Moline, Ill., a junior at Augustana majoring in music and English.

Lauren Reid from Sherrard, Ill., a junior at Augustana majoring in business and communications.

Anita Cook from Davenport, Ill., a senior at Augustana majoring in studio art.

Calvin Vo from Moline, Ill., a sophomore at Augustana majoring in English and theatre.

Ricky Rector from Davenport, Iowa, a sophomore at Augustana majoring in communication sciences and disorders.

In honor of the 150th anniversary of Augustana College, the Homeland Tour takes the choir along the Mississippi and across the state of Illinois to recognize the college's relationship with its geographic home. Featured American composers are Eric William Barnum, Eric Whitacre, Morten Lauridsen, Stephen Paulus and Robert H. Young. The program also includes works by renowned 20th century international composers Damijan Mocnik, Krzysztof Penderecki and Carl Orff. This rich, eclectic program incorporates works that elicit the idea of community and home.

In addition, the tour program reflects some of the recent performance invitations the choir has received. Selections from Orff's Carmina Burana appear on the program because the Augustana Choir, under Dr. Jon Hurty's direction, has been asked to perform the work at New York's Carnegie Hall this May. Spirituals by composer/arranger Stacey Gibbs close the program. Gibbs asked the choir to record the selections on an upcoming CD of his works.

Hurty feels that tours offer "an opportunity to share the choral program and the talents of our students with an even broader community." Founded in 1931, the Augustana Choir, which tours both domestically and internationally, has performed in some of the world's most treasured places from New York's Alice Tully Hall to the grand Uppsala Cathedral in Sweden and the Great Wall of China.

Touring often is a highlight of a student's college experience. "Tour has been my favorite part of my four years at college," said senior Ryan Shershen. "It takes the cake over classes, parties, other organizations, etc. I have loved the traveling that we have done from Sweden to our nation's capitol. We sound great at every concert, and the best part is that we improve so much as a choir over tour...it is amazing to hear the difference between the home concert after tour and the fall concert at the beginning of the year."

The dates and locations for the Augustana Choir tour are as follows:

Feb. 18-First Lutheran Church, Galesburg, Ill.

Feb. 19-St. John's Lutheran Church, Springfield, Ill.

Feb. 20-Trinity Lutheran Church, Chesterfield, Mo.

Feb. 21-Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Decatur, Ill.

Feb. 22-St. John's Lutheran Church, Bloomington, Ill.

Feb. 23-Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Naperville, Ill.

Feb. 24-Bethlehem Lutheran Church, St. Charles, Ill.

Feb. 25-First Lutheran Church, Rockford, Ill.

March 11-St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport, Iowa

About Augustana: Founded in 1860 and situated on a 115-acre campus near the Mississippi River, Augustana College is a private, liberal arts institution affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The college enrolls 2,500 students from diverse geographic, social, ethnic and religious backgrounds and offers more than 70 majors and related areas of study. Augustana employs 287 faculty members and has a student-faculty ratio of 11:1. Augustana continues to do what it has always done: challenge and prepare students for lives of leadership and service in our complex, ever-changing world.

Announcement at Pheasant Fest Marks 25th Anniversary of CRP, Opens New Conservation Opportunities to Landowners 

OMAHA, Jan. 28, 2011 – Speaking today at National Pheasant Fest 2011, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the next general signup for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) will begin on March 14, 2011, and continue through April 15, 2011. This is the second consecutive year that USDA has offered a general CRP signup.

"Over the past 25 years, support for CRP has grown thanks to strong backing from farmers, ranchers, conservationists, hunters, fishermen and other outdoor sports enthusiasts," said Vilsack. "Not only has CRP contributed to the national effort to improve water and air quality, it has preserved habitat for wildlife, and prevented soil erosion by protecting the most sensitive areas including those prone to flash flooding and runoff. Today's announcement continues the Obama Administration's effort to conserve sensitive areas and improve wildlife habitat."

Through CRP, eligible landowners receive annual rental payments and cost-share assistance to establish long-term, resource conserving covers on eligible farmland. Land can be enrolled for a period of up to 15 years. During the general signup period, farmers and ranchers may offer eligible land at their county Farm Service Agency (FSA) office. Land currently not enrolled in CRP may be offered in this signup provided all eligibility requirements are met. Additionally, current CRP participants with contracts expiring this fall may make new contract offers. Contracts awarded under this signup are scheduled to become effective Oct. 1, 2011. The general sign-up for CRP will not affect cropped acres for this growing season. Acres will be enrolled in the program in the fall.

To help ensure that interested farmers and ranchers are aware of the signup period, USDA has signed partnership agreements with several conservation and wildlife organizations that will play an active role in USDA's 2011 CRP outreach efforts. They include; Pheasants Forever, Ducks Unlimited, National Association of State Foresters, Playa Lakes Joint Venture (Lesser Prairie Chicken/Sage Grouse), and the Longleaf Incorporated Bobwhite Conservation Initiative.

The FSA implements CRP on behalf of Commodity Credit Corporation. FSA will evaluate and rank eligible CRP offers using an Environmental Benefits Index (EBI) that shows the environmental benefits to be gained from enrolling the land in CRP. The EBI consists of five environmental factors (wildlife, water, soil, air and enduring benefits) and cost. Decisions on the EBI cutoff will be made after the sign-up ends and after analyzing the EBI data of all the offers.

In addition to the general sign-up, CRP's continuous sign-up program will be ongoing. Continuous acres represent the most environmentally desirable and sensitive land. For more information, visit http://www.fsa.usda.gov/crp.

CRP protects millions of acres of American topsoil from erosion and is designed to safeguard the Nation's natural resources. By reducing water runoff and sedimentation, CRP protects groundwater and helps improve the condition of lakes, rivers, ponds, and streams. Acreage enrolled in the CRP is planted to resource-conserving vegetative covers, making the program a major contributor to increased wildlife populations in many parts of the country. Through the 2008 Farm Bill, CRP is authorized for a maximum enrollment of 32 million acres. USDA estimates that contracts on 3.3 million to 6.5 million acres are scheduled to expire annually between now and 2014.

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