In The News

  • Annual Urban Renewal Report System Now Available 

    Friday, August 26, 2016

    ​The Annual Urban Renewal Report (AURR) filing system is now open on the Iowa Department of Management's Web site. All cities with an urban renewal area must complete and submit the AURR by December 1 of each year. While cities are not required to publish the AURR, they must have the council approve the report before the submission deadline.

    The online reporting system requires a variety of documents to be uploaded in PDF format, including urban renewal plans, maps and amendments. The Department of Management will mail a letter to each city with its username and password from last year to access the system. 

  • IPERS Posts FY 2016 Investment Returns 

    Thursday, August 25, 2016

    The Iowa Public Employees’ Retirement System (IPERS) recently released its Fiscal Year 2016 investment performance, which showed a return of 2.15 percent. The FY 2016 return is short of the actuarial assumption of 7.5 percent and is a decrease from the FY 2015 return of 3.96 percent. Over the past three years, the return has been 7.17 percent. The IPERS trust fund balance stood at $28.27 billion at the close of the Fiscal Year.

    IPERS is the largest public pension system in Iowa with more than 325,000 members. Over 110,000 retirees and their beneficiaries receive IPERS retirement benefits. Additional information can be found on the IPERS Web site.

  • Fall Employment Conference to be Held October 25 

    Tuesday, August 23, 2016

    ​The Fall Iowa Employment Conference will be held October 25 at the Meadows Events & Conference Center in Altoona. The theme of this year's fall conference is Health & Benefits and will be designed for attendees to gain more understanding of COBRA, workplace wellness, EAP, healthcare consumerism, private exchange marketplaces, benefits administration and more. A special session on the FLSA white collar exemption will also be offered.

    City officials, including managers, supervisors, human resource professional and others are invited to attend. Continuing education credit will be offered for IMFOA certification.

    Registration to the conference is open now, additional information is available on the Iowa Employment Conference website.

  • Forecast5 

    Tuesday, August 23, 2016

    Forecast5 Analytics provides powerful analytic tools to help local government leaders use data to synchronize financial resources and strategic plans. The Forecast5 product suite includes cloud-based financial forecasting and budgeting software, geospatial analytics, survey tools and a collaboration network. Forecast5 solutions generate actionable analytics to help drive decision with increased performance and service delivery.

    The League is pround to Partner with Forecast5 Analytics. Learn more about our Community Alliance Programs.

  • Conference Workshop Lineup Includes Building for the Future 

    Monday, August 22, 2016

    ​Join us September 14-16 in Des Moines for the 2016 Annual Conference & Exhibit, the premier statewide conference for city officials. The conference features a variety of networking events, a superhero-themed exhibit hall, interesting general session speakers and a schedule of workshops that offer important training opportunities.

    Featured in the workshop schedule is Building for the Future - Infrastructure for the Next Generation, which will be held Thursday, September 15, 8:30-9:30 am. Many communities are concerned with finding ways to plan and build their city so that it can accommodate growth and attract younger generations. This session will offer ideas for cities on how to properly zone the community for the future and make public improvements that will serve younger residents.

    This workshop is part of the conference's overall workshop schedule, which includes nearly 40 options that cover a wide range of municipal government issues. See the full conference schedule to learn about these workshops and register for the conference. Every hero needs a sidekick, let the training at this conference and the Iowa League of Cities help you.

  • 2016 Annual Financial Report 

    Monday, August 22, 2016

    ​Need help reconciling the city's year end books and completing the Annual Financial Report? Check out the 2016 AFR Training video to learn more​.
  • Healthiest State Initiative Annual Walk 

    Friday, August 19, 2016

    The Healthiest State Initiative encourages Iowans to "Step It Up" from a 1K to 30 minutes on Wednesday, October 5. Their goal is to have organized walks in all 99 counties. Register your walk to ensure it is counted toward the statewide goal! Walks can be made private or public, and can be made for as many people as you want!

    In addition the Healthiest State Initiative has a social media contest this year specific to communities/cities and the grand prize is $1,000. All a community/city has to do is register a walk through the Web site by September 17, and they will entered into the drawing. Cities are encouraged to promote that they registered a walk through their social media, but that is not required.

    A walk specific toolkits for communities/cities and other information can be found online.

  • Open Meetings, Open Records Webinar Now Available! 

    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    Register now for the Open Meetings and Open Records Laws and Best Practices, which is available and includes guidance on a topic of importance to all cities. Understanding the open meetings and open records laws is fundamental to strong, transparent local governance and we will go through the various the state codes that you need to know. In addition, we'll discuss some tips for improving council meetings and records request processes.

    Speaker: Mickey Shields, Iowa League of Cities
    Registration: $35 | Register Online
    Below are the webinars to be released later this year. More information is available on the 2016 Webinar Series page.
    • Understanding Iowa's Property Tax System | Available Now
    • Assessing and Replacing Outdated Utility Infrastructure | Available Now
    • Placemaking: Building Your Community Identity | Available Now
    • Open Meetings and Open Records Laws and Best Practices | August 16
    • Human Resources Management for Cities | October 18

    Each webinar will be pre-recorded and released on the date listed. The webinars will be archived, giving registrants the ability to access and view any purchased webinar whenever they like. Webinars from the 2014 series and 2015 series are also archived and available for purchase.  

  • People's All-Star Tournament 

    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    Take time to vote in the Round 1 - Part 2 People's All-Star Tournament on Facebook. The top 4 cities in this round will advance. Vote by liking the photo of your choice in this week's Facebook album. . 

    The People's All-Star Tournament is part of the League's All-Star Community Awards. Photos with the most “likes” in the current week’s Facebook album will move to the next round. Albums for voting will be posted by 11 a.m. each Monday and conclude at 8 a.m. the following Monday, with the exception of the final round. The final round of voting will conclude on Thursday, September 15 at the League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit, and the winner of the People’s All-Star Community Award will be announced later that evening at the Awards Banquet.

  • Community Visioning Grant Available for 2016 

    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    The Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program is now accepting applications for the 2017 program year. Communities with populations of fewer than 10,000 residents in need of transportation enhancement planning assistance are eligible to participate in the Community Visioning Program.​
  • CAT Grant Applications Due September 15 

    Monday, August 15, 2016

    ​Cities may apply for Fiscal Year 2017 Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) grants, available through the Iowa Economic Development Authority. The CAT program provides funding to communities to assist in the development and creation of multi-purpose attraction or tourism facilities. CAT awards can help position a community to take advantage of economic development opportunities in tourism and strengthen a community’s competitiveness as a place to work and live.

    Eligible projects must primarily be vertical infrastructure with demonstrated substantial regional or statewide economic impact. Vertical infrastructure means land acquisition and construction, major renovation and major repair of buildings, all appurtenant structures, utilities, site development and recreational trails.

    Grant applications are due September 15. Additional information is available on the CAT Web site.

  • Professional Development Credits Offered at Annual Conference and Exhibit  

    Friday, August 12, 2016

    Members of the Iowa Municipal Finance Officers Association (IMFOA) can receive up to 9 flex credits during this year’s Annual Conference and Exhibit taking place September 14-16 in Des Moines. Flex credits are used by IMFOA members to become an Iowa Certified Municipal Clerk or Iowa Certified Municipal Finance Officer. Attendees can earn three hours of flex credit for attending the Wednesday workshop, four hours of flex credit will be offered on Thursday and the conference will conclude on Friday with two hours of flex credit. Credit will be offered for each workshop attended.

    In addition, five hours of Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit has been approved for legal professionals attending specific​ conference workshops. These workshops feature topics of particular interest to city attorneys.

    Learn more about the exciting and informative line-up of workshops designed to meet the needs of municipal professionals. The League’s Annual Conference & Exhibit is the largest training in the state designed specifically for Iowa’s elected and appointed city officials. In addition to more than 40 workshops, the conference includes ample opportunity to network with peers and learn from one another.

    Join us September 14-16 in Des Moines at this event planned just for you! Afterall, every hero needs a sidekick; let the League be yours! Register now.​​​​​​

  • Street Finance Report Due September 30 

    Tuesday, August 09, 2016

    ​Cities are reminded to complete and electronically file the Street Finance Report by September 30. The report is required by the Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT), which has an online filing system along with instructions on its Street Finance Report Web site. Cities must use the forms provided by the IDOT and adopt the report by resolution prior to filing.
  • Cityscape ePub 

    Tuesday, August 02, 2016

    The League's electronic Cityscape magazine ePub magazine for the August 2016 issue has been released.

    Take the time to chose your subscription preference: print, electronic or both. Unless action is taken, your subscription will continue to note a preference for print. Visit to change your preference.

  • Congratulations, All-Star Community Award winners 

    Monday, August 01, 2016

    The League’s All-Star Community Award promotes, acknowledges and encourages excellence in local government. Judges, who are former city officials and individuals with connections to municipal government, looked for each project’s impact on the community, including how it met the community’s needs, how many people it affected and its longevity. Judged entries are divided into three population categories.

    Less than 3,000 in population: Malvern’s Downtown Facade Reconstruction

    3,000-9,999 in population: Asbury’s Community Services Campus

    More than 10,000 in population: Clinton’s Main Avenue Green Infrastructure Project

    People’s Choice Winner: You decide at

    Congratulations to this year’s winners!

    For more photos of the winning projects, check out the All-Star Winners Album at