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North Liberty Leader

It’s on at CCA

School board okays February special election

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader

OXFORD– Voters in the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) school district will decide on Feb. 4, 2014, whether or not to allow the district to issue $48 million in bonds for construction and renovation projects.
Board president Steve Swenka accepted petitions bearing a total of 437 signatures calling for the special election during the board’s regular monthly meeting Wednesday, Oct. 16 at the Clear Creek Elementary in Oxford.

One-man mission of love

Local veteran seeks to help others battle PTSD

CEDAR RAPIDS– “People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.”
It’s a quote of uncertain origin, but there is no uncertainty about whom it was said.

Cuties in costume

NORTH LIBERTY– Children from Montessori Children’s Garden in North Liberty were invited to an exclusive Trick-or-Treat parade on Halloween morning, Oct. 31. Businesses in the Stonebridge Promenade complex, located at the corner of Highway 965 and Cherry Street, all opened their doors to the passing procession, handing out candy and non-sweet specialties. This year marks the third annual parade organized by Kim Williams of Blink Vision, the anchoring business of the Stonebridge complex. (Photo by Lori Lindner)

Free Thanksgiving dinner at South Slope

NORTH LIBERTY– For the second year in a row, a free Thanksgiving dinner will be available to those in need, thanks to a local community member and several businesses.
On Thanksgiving Day from noon until 4 p.m., a full Thanksgiving meal will be available for those in need at the South Slope Community Center in North Liberty.

Friends of NL library announces Nov. 16 waffle breakfast

NORTH LIBERTY– Visit the North Liberty Community Center, 520 W. Cherry St., for the Friends of the North Liberty Community Library’s annual Belgian Waffle Breakfast fundraiser Saturday, Nov. 16, from 8 a.m. until noon in the recreation center gym. It is an all-you-can-eat breakfast featuring Belgian waffles and sausages.
Kids 5 and under eat free, everyone else eats for just $7 each. Tickets are for sale at the library or at the door the day of the breakfast. The Friends will also have their new cookbook for sale. All proceeds will benefit the library.

City of Tiffin accepts right-of-way deal with Grace United Methodist Church

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader

TIFFIN– Barring an act of God, a deal will be struck, and Ireland Avenue will move forward.
In a special meeting Oct. 30, the Tiffin City Council took two swift actions that resulted in accepting a counteroffer for property owned by Grace United Methodist Church in Tiffin.

Volunteers invited to assist in prairie seed harvest in Johnson County

OXFORD, IA – The Johnson County Conservation Board (JCCB) is in the midst of a fall harvest and they need your help. The JCCB has a wealth of prairie plant seeds to bring in from the prairies this fall, but they lack the time and extra hands to do it alone. They are requesting your assistance at the following seed collection event on November 3rd beginning at 9 a.m. at F.W. Kent Park Knight Prairie Pavilion Parking Lot.

Swenka given maximum sentence

Judge accepts Alford plea, Swenka to serve two years

IOWA CITY– Twenty-year-old Zachary Swenka has been sentenced to two years in prison for causing the death of 14-year-old Mackenzie Lown.
Swenka was charged with vehicular homicide and involuntary manslaughter when Lown was killed in the car Swenka was driving on Oct. 17, 2011, on U.S. Highway 6 near Tiffin.
Swenka’s plea hearing took place at the Johnson County Courthouse on Thursday, Oct. 24, presided by Judge Stephen Gerard. Swenka submitted a guilty plea to the charge of involuntary manslaughter.

A happy haunting on Walnut Street

NORTH LIBERTY– Halloween spirit is everywhere at 32 W. Walnut St. in North Liberty; in the bushes, on the lawn and dangling from the trees, in fact.
Jake McCusker really gets into the holiday. He grew up in Ottumwa, in an area of town that traditionally went all out with Halloween decorating.
“Everybody decorated for Halloween,” Jake said. “Subdivisions would even do themes. Everyone had their porch lights on for trick-or-treating. It was like Halloween Town.”

City elections Tuesday, Nov. 5

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader

TIFFIN– Municipal elections will take place Tuesday, Nov. 5. Voters in Johnson County will be asked to choose city council members to fill any vacant seats. There is only one public measure on any municipal ballots this time around; Iowa City residents will be asked if the age for entry to a bar that serves alcohol should be changed back to 19 years, instead of 21. Iowa City, University Heights and Coralville all have strongly contested races for council positions, and Coralville has four candidates running for its mayor’s seat.

Held up on the jail

Supes still wrestling with justice center options

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader

IOWA CITY– It could be back to the drawing table, literally, for some area architects. While the Johnson County Board of Supervisors continues to grapple with how to move forward in addressing courthouse and jail space needs, the possibility of dividing the proposed justice center into two separate projects appears more likely.

Ben Newell Memorial 5K race to be held at Sugar Bottom Nov. 3

NORTH LIBERTY– Join the community for the Ben Newell Memorial 5K race Sunday, Nov. 3, at the Sugar Bottom Recreation Area, North Liberty. Check-in is at 7 a.m. Race begins at 8 a.m.
Mason City native Ben Newell enjoyed many passions in his life; his dog Jethro, attending country music concerts, Hawkeye football games, volunteering, fishing, boating, and working in the insurance industry. By far, Ben enjoyed playing sports and being active; he was training for his first mini-triathlon last fall.