In The News

  • GASB 77 Training Video and Resources Available 

    Wednesday, June 20, 2018

    The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) Statement Number 77 requires governments that enter into tax abatement agreements to disclose information as of June 30, 2018. Primarily it involves cities using tax increment financing under the urban renewal provisions in Chapter 403 of the state code or pre-approved valuation abatements under Chapter 404, Urban Revitalization.

    A video, prepared after the training at the Iowa Municipal Professionals Academy, explains who GASB 77 affects, tools developed by the Iowa Department of Management, and sample disclosures created by the Auditor of State’s office. In addition, a Q&A has been prepared covering common questions. Sign into the League site and learn more in the Finance area of the Member Resources section.

     
  • Cities in the News 

    Tuesday, June 19, 2018

    ​The Iowa League of Cities collects news articles from the week to share with our members. Cities are doing great things around the state, and we want to celebrate your success with you. If your city is in the news please share it with us at citynews@iowaleague.org

    Note: The articles compiled above come from independent media sources who are solely responsible for their content. Iowa League of Cities staff did not participate in writing any of these articles and Iowa League of Cities does not necessarily endorse the content of the articles. Some articles may be available only by subscription. All cities in the news will not be featured each week.
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  • 2018 New Laws of Interest to Cities 

    Monday, June 18, 2018

    The 2018 Iowa Legislative Session of the 87th General Assembly adjourned Sine Die on Saturday, May 5. Throughout the 17 weeks of the session, the legislature passed legislation dealing with water quality, tax reform and mental health reform. The session again concluded with the League achieving one of its main legislative goals: protecting the standing appropriation for the commercial and industrial property tax backfill. The New Laws of Interest to Cities report covers legislative highlights and bills the legislature passed that affect cities.
     
  • I-80 Planning Study 

    Monday, June 18, 2018

    The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) will hold a public information meeting from 5 - 7 p.m. on July 24 at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, 909 Robert D. Ray Drive, in Des Moines. The meeting is to discuss the Interstate 80 Planning Study and to gather public feedback on the technical reports, including the final report, Vision for Infrastructure Investment. The reports and previous online meetings are available to view online at: www.iowadot.gov/interstatestudy.

    The meeting will be conducted utilizing an open forum format. Iowa DOT staff will be present to informally discuss the planning study. No formal presentation will be made. If you are not able to attend this meeting, information and materials will be available online at the project website.

    The meeting space is accessible for persons with disabilities. However, if you require special accommodations at the meeting, please notify the Iowa DOT contact listed to the left by July 20.

    To submit a comment online about this project, go to https://bit.ly/I80Comment​.

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  • All-Hazards Preparedness Training Offered for Senior Officials 

    Monday, June 18, 2018

    Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management have announced Senior Officials Workshops for All-Hazards Preparedness coming up in June, July and November across Iowa. This workshop provides a forum for local or regional executives to share strategies and coordinate plans for emergency preparedness and response. This workshop is an efficient process for discussing executive-level issues with leaders from the agencies involved in all levels of the emergency management structure.

    The training will occur in Calmar (June 20), Manchester (June 21), Davenport (June 22), Council Bluffs (July 17), Des Moines (July 18), Grinnell (July 29), Mount Pleasant (November 15) and Stuart (November 17). More information and free online registration can be found here.

    Topics:
    • Roles and responsibilities and preparedness challenges
     Domestic preparedness resources and how to leverage them for your community
     Homeland Security Strategic Planning as it relates to risk and needs assessment and the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) for your jurisdiction
     Executive-level incident response and recovery considerations, including medical/ public health, situational appraisal, incident management (ICS), mutual aid agreements, media relations, recovery and restoration processes, Federal assistance, and business/ economic recovery
     Includes a practical exercise tailored for the jurisdiction(s) as the catalyst to generate discussion of policy and emergency operations center activities required to support the incident commander’s and state/federal government requirements related to an all-hazard, catastrophic incident

    Course Materials:
    Participants receive an executive handbook on all-hazards preparedness. This reference book contains chapters on:
    • The importance of all-hazards preparedness and the “right” questions to ask during an emergency situation
    • The National Response Framework
    • Local Government Partner Guides
    • Emergency Support Functions and Support Annexes
    • Working with the media

    Participants:
    This workshop is intended for elected and appointed senior officials from a local jurisdiction, but may also include executives from other community entities, both public and private, that are likely to be involved in a disaster response, including:
     Directors of local response agencies
    •​ Chiefs of departments: fire, law, EMS, HazMat, public works, water, public health, health care, emergency management, governmental administrative disciplines / services
     Public Information Officers
     Resident federal agency representatives (FBI, BATF, Secret Service, FEMA, TSA)
     CEOs of hospitals, college and university representatives, school district superintendents
     Airport and port facility managers​

     
  • See Council Bluffs by Bike at the Annual Conference 

    Monday, June 18, 2018

    ​Enjoy a fun and leisurely bike ride with colleagues through Council Bluffs and beautiful Manawa State Park at this year's Annual Conference & Exhibit! The 12 mile ride will give participants a chance to see projects around the community, the Council Bluffs Recreation Complex and the 772-acre Lake Manawa at Manawa State Park.

    Cyclists of all levels are welcome. Bring your own bike and helmet, and register now as space is limited. Two Bike Tour workshop times are available: 10 a.m. to noon and 1-3 p.m. on Wednesday, September 12. Sign up for the workshop when you register for the Annual Conference & Exhibit.

    The League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit is the largest training in the state designed specifically for Iowa’s elected and appointed city officials. The conference also includes ample opportunity to network with peers and learn from one another.
     
  • BUILD replaces TIGER Grants 

    Friday, June 15, 2018

    ​The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) recently announced a new funding program, Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD), which will replace the former TIGER grant program. $1.5 billion in discretionary grant funding is available for surface transportation projects under BUILD and will be awarded on a competitive basis to projects that will have a significant local or regional impact. BUILD funding can support roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports or intermodal transportation.

    Projects for BUILD will be evaluated based on merit criteria that include safety, economic competitiveness, quality of life, environmental protection, state of good repair, innovation, partnership and additional non-Federal revenue for future transportation infrastructure investments. The DOT intends to award a greater share of BUILD grant funding to projects located in rural areas that align well with the selection criteria than to such projects in urban areas. The funding notice highlights rural needs in several of the evaluation criteria, including support for rural broadband deployment where it is part of an eligible transportation project.

    Grant applications are due July 19 and more info is available on the BUILD Web site.
     
  • Street Finance Report Training Available Through Iowa DOT 

    Thursday, June 14, 2018

    ​The Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) will hold training classes for city officials on completing the Street Finance Report (SFR). Each city is required to complete and electronically file the SFR by September 30 and the classes offer help in understanding how to complete the form, how to use the online system, what information is needed and more.

    The classes will be offered at different locations around the state July 27 and 31, August 2, 8, 16, 21, 27 and 29, and September 6. There will be beginner, advanced and short review sessions.

    To register to attend a class you will be required to create an account at the IowaDOTU Web page. Once you have the account created you will be able to search for the class under the “Search” option or you can select the calendar method (classes are listed as "City Street Finance Report").
     
  • IDOT Traffic Safety Improvement Program Offers Funding Opportunity 

    Tuesday, June 12, 2018

    ​Funding is available to cities through the Iowa Department of Transportation's Traffic Safety Improvement Program (TSIP). The program provides funding to cities, counties and the state for roadway safety improvements, research, studies or public information initiatives. Grant applications may be submitted under one of three categories:
    • Site-specific: construction or improvement of traffic safety and operations at a specific site or corridor with a crash history
    • Traffic control devices: purchase of materials for installation of new traffic control devices, such as signs, signals or pavement markings; or replacement of obsolete signs or signals
    • Research, studies and public information: transportation safety research, studies or public information initiatives, such as signing or pavement marking research, driver education/information, work zone safety, and crash data analysis improvements
    Awards have a maximum amount of $500,000 per project. Funding applications are due August 15 and additional information is available on the TSIP Web site.
     
  • Housing Bureau is open 

    Monday, June 11, 2018

    The Housing Bureau and registration are now open for the League’s Annual Conference and Exhibit​. You must register for the event before making a hotel reservation. Join colleagues for connections and valuable training, but register early to receive a reduced rate!

     

    The League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit is the largest training in the state designed specifically for Iowa’s elected and appointed city officials. The conference also includes ample opportunity to network with peers and learn from one another. Join us at this event planned just for you, where the education, training and events are designed to make your City Strong!

    Check the June issue of Cityscape magazine and www.iowaleague.org for more information. #IowaLeague18
     
  • Congratulations Cindy Kendall 

    Monday, June 11, 2018

    One of our own, Cindy Kendall, has received the Dwight Ink Public Service Award. Congratulations, Cindy! 

    The award recognizes public managers in Iowa who exemplify the highest standards of dedication to public service and are characterized by their leadership abilities, their passion for their work, their high professional standards and the respect they are given by their peers.

     
  • NLC Releases 2018 State of Cities Report 

    Tuesday, June 05, 2018

    ​The 2018 State of the Cities Report, produced by the National League of Cities (NLC), was recently released and highlights important municipal issues. The annual report reviews content from mayor's state of the city speeches from around the country and provides analysis of major issues cities are facing.

    This year's findings showed economic development, infrastructure, budgets, housing and public safety as the top five issues that cities are facing. Additional details and direct feedback from city officials is found throughout the report as well as examples of solutions cities are using.

     
  • Celebrate Small Cities Month! 

    Tuesday, June 05, 2018

    ​​Celebrate Small Cities Month, designated by the National League of Cities (NLC) to help recognize the achievements of small cities across the country. NLC is highlighting different small cities throughout June on its Facebook page and encouraging city officials to share their stories of tight-knit communities, creative solutions and dedicated civic pride. 

    Join us in recognizing the importance of our small cities and the work they do to provide safe, healthy and vibrant communities!

     
  • Forge Powerful Connections 

    Friday, June 01, 2018

    Learn new skills and make new alliances to help make your City Strong at the League’s Annual Conference and Exhibit, September 12-14 in Council Bluffs.

     

    Registration is now available, and the online Housing Bureau​ will open Monday, June 11. You must register for the event before making a hotel reservation. Join colleagues for connections and valuable training, but register early to receive a reduced rate and to get housing information!

    The League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit is the largest training in the state designed specifically for Iowa’s elected and appointed city officials. The conference also includes ample opportunity to network with peers and learn from one another. Join us at this event planned just for you!

    Check the June issue of Cityscape magazine and www.iowaleague.org for more information. #IowaLeague18
     
  • Registration is OPEN! 

    Tuesday, May 29, 2018

    Registration is now open for the League’s Annual Conference and Exhibit. This year’s theme is “City Strong,” and the event will be held September 12-14 in Council Bluffs. We encourage cities to register early to receive a reduced registration rate and to get housing information before the online Housing Bureau​ opens on June 11!

     

    Check the upcoming June issue of Cityscape magazine and www.iowaleague.org for more information.

    The League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit is the largest training in the state designed specifically for Iowa’s elected and appointed city officials. The conference also includes ample opportunity to network with peers and learn from one another. Register now for this event planned just for you!

    Join us for education, training and networking to help make your City Strong. #IowaLeague18