Best of the week Nov 11-20, 2009

I’m going to try and keep a tab of stories through the week that are interesting or stories I think you should know that are happening in the state. These are stories that likely would have been in the news analysis portion of The Iowa Journal, but since we don’t do that anymore, I’ll compile them here.

Even though Thomson is in Illinois, it does have an impact on Iowa. The Obama administration is pushing for a plan to convert the Correctional Facility to become the new Gitmo.

This was a big deal during most of my time in the Quad Cities. I know the Watermelon Cafe was on TV and in print several times, all hoping for economic benefit of a new prison coming to the region that badly needed the jobs.

Here’s a story out of the Clinton Herald. Lots of media stories have been done about this proposal.

A lot of the hub-bub is over jobs and fear. This area of Illinois has seen some rough economic times, even before this latest downturn.
John Carlson of the DM Register takes a visit to Thomson.

School districts are looking at a few options for saving money. One that’s gaining some attention is sharing superintendents. Mason City and Clear Lake are larger schools, but the two are looking at the idea. Clear Lake has an interim super this year and he’s warm to the idea.

Here’s KIMT-TV’s story.

Did Webster City ignore warning signs about a company’s role in their economy? Electrolux was the major employer in town and recently announced they are closing and moving operations to Mexico. A few are wondering if the community economic officials should have removed some of the eggs out of the town’s basket and diversified the community’s economy. They city says they didn’t want to upset their employer by bringing in competition for workers.

The Des Moines Register raised this thought earlier this week.

Ever get asked to write a recommendation for someone you may not know that well? Maybe a LinkedIn note or on another site. Here’s a story from the NY Times about their advice.

Between OK Henderson and Dave Price, they’ve brought up an idea floated by Ed Failor, Jr about merging the 3 public universities into one. Failor cites the Wisconsin or somewhat how Missouri runs things.

Here’s Kay’s blog post on the subject.

Here’s Dave’s discussion on his show, Purple Matters, on Des MoinesLocalLive.com.

The city of Cedar Rapids is still rebuilding and now they are thinking about going green in the process as well, looking to expand into some LEED construction standards. That’s being good citizens and leaders.

The issue came up in this Cedar Rapids Gazette story.

Adam Belz of the Cedar Rapids Gazette looks at how combing some of Iowa’s counties may save money and make sense. Here’s the story that may leave your home county merged with another.

And finally, a shout out to the Iowa Journal for looking at all tax credits, not just the movie tax credit. Now the Governor is wanting to examine all the credits. Here’s the DM Register’s story. Here’s ours. Enjoy.

What did I miss that the state should care about?

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