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Hart Announces Campaign to Replace Retiring Loebsack

Congressman Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa) announced just one month ago that he will retire at the end of his current term. A couple people have already filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission to replace him, including a woman with a background in education, agriculture, and politics.

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Fort Madison, IA – The Fort Madison city council has agreed to extend a water main to Industrial Tooling and Fabrication. City Manager Bill Kelly says the company plans to construct a 32,000 square foot addition to its facility. He says the extension is needed because the company will have to add a sprinkler system and the current line is not strong enough to handle the increased water need. The water main extension will cost about $385,000 and could be finished by October.

Keokuk, IA – The Keokuk City Council voted to accept a new service contract with the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission. Mayor Dave Gudgel says the service has been a positive for the city. The one year deal will cost the city $7500. Gudgel says the hours will remain from 11 AM until 3 PM on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Macomb, IL – The McDonough County Clerk's office is asking the county board to create two more voting precincts in Macomb. Clerk Florine Miller says all WIU residence halls would be located in the two new precincts. She says many off-campus residents objected to having to vote on-campus. Miller says under the proposal they would continue to vote at the Wesley United Methodist Church. She says if the precincts are approved, more election judges will be needed. She says the change should not add other costs to an election.

Abingdon, IL – Abingdon students have been monitoring the wind speeds at their football field for almost one year. Now physics teacher Phil Willis says they're filing for a grant to see what it would take to form their own power cooperative. Willis says the original idea of trying a turbine for one school has grown to installing several turbines. He says students will analyze data on how much power the neighboring school districts ukse. They will then see if turbines might meet all or most of those needs.

Macomb, IL – An attorney who practices juvenile law believes many of today's children don't have the restraints of previous generations. John Biggers says society constantly tantalizes youth with the message that having "things" and power is what counts. Biggers says in recent years society has taken more of a get-tough attitude toward juvenile crime. However, he says developments such as teen courts offer a chance for young offenders to learn they should change their ways.

Keokuk, IA – The 3rd annual Medicine Eagle Gathering Of The People Pow Wow will take place from Friday evening through Sunday. Lois Deprima is with the Medicine Eagle Council, which organizes the event. She says children will be honored throughout the Pow Wow. The weekend will include ceremonial dancing, crafts, food, and a carnival. Deprima says Native Americans from across the country are expected to attend the Pow Wow.

Hamilton, IL – The Hamilton City Council has agreed to apply for two Illinois Department of Transportation grants. The money would be used to enhance the triangle junction at the intersection of highways 96 and 136. It would also help pay for the rebuilding of the old covered bridge along highway 96. The estimated cost of the projects is about $125,000. The city would have to come up with a local match of about $25,000 or turn down the grants if they are awarded to Hamilton.

Macomb, IL – Colchester residents began drinking Macomb water over the weekend. The cities announced they opened the eight-inch main before they had planned to because of warm weather and a dwindling stock of chemicals at the Colchester treatment plant. Construction on the $750,000 project began last winter. Colchester had been having problems with water quality and wanted a better supply. Macomb Mayor Mick Wisslead says this gives his town a chance to extend water out to where Route 336 comes to Macomb. He says it could spur development there.

Macomb, IL – Barricades could soon appear at a couple more rail crossings in Macomb. Temporary barricades are already in place at the Clay Street crossing. Aldermen could vote in a couple weeks to have the same done at Campbell and Madison Streets. Once the crossings are closed, they will not re-open. Mayor Mick Wisslead says eventually permanent barriers will be constructed. The Illinois Commerce Commission will pay the city $200,000 for installing the permanent barriers.

Keokuk, IA – More than 500 people endured a July 4th rainstorm to witness the dedication of the Keokuk Veteran's Memorial. Memorial Committee Chair George Morgan says the weather did not dampen the spirits of those in attendance. The memorial resembles the old Verandah arches that stood in Keokuk. There are more than 1400 names on the memorial. Some date as far back as the Civil War.


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Held up over disagreements over federal food stamps, the first draft of the 2018 farm bill arrived Thursday, bearing 35 changes to that program, including starting a national database of participants.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

As agriculture intensified in the 20th century, summers in the Midwest became wetter and cooler.  An MIT study published this month looked at whether vegetation from crop production, rather than greenhouse gas emissions that are an established source of climate changes, could have driven these regional impacts.

Ben Kuebrich/Kansas News Service/Harvest Public Media

A new, widely debated federal mandate requires truckers to electronically track the number of hours they're on the road — a rule that is meant to make highways safer. But there is a big difference between hauling a load of TVs and a load of cattle destined for meatpacking plants.


Lawsuits filed in Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, and Arkansas against the makers of the herbicide dicamba will be centralized in the federal court in St. Louis.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

In the coming months, Congress will map out how it will spend upwards of $500 billion on food and farm programs over the next five years.  The massive piece of legislation known as the farm bill affects all taxpayers -- whether they know it or not.

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