The City of East Moline has passed a historic-preservation ordinance to promote the protection of historic and architectural character, as well as the resources of the city. A Historic Preservation Commission has been formed to guide and define these goals and consists of seven appointed members who are residents of the city. The commission will hold public meetings a minimum of four times a year, which will concentrate on such items as identifying historically and architecturally significant properties, and investigating and recommending procedures to protect significant properties in a number of ways, including advising property owners of procedures for inclusion in the state and national registers of historic places. Other duties of the commission include testifying before all boards and commissions on historically significant properties and reviewing zoning ordinances.

Slipped onto the United States Postal Service (USPS) Web site is information concerning a proposed rate increase that the postal service hopes to implement sometime next year. Included is a raise of the first-class letter rate to 34 cents and some changes in the Priority and Express mail rates, periodical rates, and business rates. This information can be found in a number of out-of-the-way places on the USPS Web site at (, but the most complete picture - hidden in 57 pages of governmental doublespeak - can be found in the Federal Register copy of the proposed rate increases at ( The text version can be found at (

A third candidate is running for the 42nd District of the Iowa House against incumbent Republican Jamie Van Fossen and Democratic challenger John White. His name is Rich Moroney, resident of Davenport and the Libertarian candidate. You can learn more about the candidates at their Web sites; Jamie Van Fossen's is at ( and Rich Moroney's site is at ( John White doesn't appear to have a Web site yet.
Violent crime is dropping in America - another 10.4 percent last year - falling to a 26-year low, and the FBI has the numbers to prove it. The agency also has statistics showing crimes and misconduct by FBI agents jumped more than 18 percent last year. A record 538 misconduct investigations were launched against FBI agents and employees last year. Other FBI employees were investigated for crimes such as eluding a police officer, credit-card theft, and shoplifting.

The City of Davenport and the Quad City River Bandits are working on a long-term lease and are trying to determine the best way to pay for the renovation of John O'Donnell Stadium. The Bandits will contribute $3 million to the renovation, the City of Davenport will up its contribution from $2.7 million to $5 million, and an additional $4 million will be raised from additional sources, including the private sector, grants, and possibly naming rights. If a lease can be agreed upon, it could be submitted to the city council for a vote on October 4.

Remember taking the ACT test in high school? For those of you who didn't take it or don't remember, the ACT is a three-and-a-half-hour multiple-choice test covering English, reading, mathematics, and science and consisting of questions directly related to the high-school curriculum. A recent article in WorldNet Daily notes that of the more than 1 million high-school seniors who took the ACT during the 1999-2000 school year, 4,593 were home-schooled. The average composite score of high-school students (including students in private schools) was 21, on the test's scale of 1 to 36. Home-schooled teens averaged 22.8. By the way, The ACT can only be given at high schools, colleges, or similar pre-selected sites and cannot be administered in a home-school setting.

U.S. Representative Jim Leach, (R-IA) was co-sponsor of a bill (recently signed by President Clinton) creating a $300 million contribution from the United States government over two years for an AIDS trust fund. Money from the fund will be used for AIDS research and prevention. While the money will be deposited at the World Bank, how it will be spent will be governed by a board appointed by the U.S. and other contributors. As Leach said in his floor speech, "Already 16.3 million have died from AIDS and more than 33 million are living with this deadly disease. Indeed, the global AIDS epidemic might fairly be described as a disease of biblical proportions. ... For the country that leads the world in wealth and research capacity to abdicate its responsibility to confront this biblically proportioned humanitarian crisis would be morally derelict."

If you haven't been out to the Quad City International Airport, it might be worth a trip for you to take a peek as work continues on a $17 million terminal-concourse-expansion project. The target date for completion of the first phase of the project is November 1, which includes the creation of six new gates for commercial aircraft, a new passenger-screening area, and a new deli and lounge area. Windows allowing full view of aircraft takeoffs and landings bank the southern wall of the concourse and allow passengers and visitors to watch runway activities such as refueling, loading, and unloading of aircraft.

The Drug Reform Coordination Network has sent out an alert that on August 23, President Clinton issued a determination waiving the human-rights requirement for a $1.3 billion aid package that it claims makes U.S. taxpayers complicit in murders and tortures. And the mere prospect of the aid, including high-tech helicopters lobbied for extensively by their manufacturers, has already provoked an escalation in the fighting in Colombia's civil war. You can make your voice heard on this issue by calling the White House at (202)456-1111 and by contacting your legislators. This can be done at ( or by calling or writing lawmakers - old-fashioned, but still quite effective.

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