Breaking news and headlines for Coralville, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids and eastern Iowa including local, state and national news, sports, weather, current events, pop culture, business news, coverage of local events and video clips
Iowa could reduce by more than half its rate of motor vehicle accidents that kill teenagers if state lawmakers adopted a stronger graduated driver license law, according to a new national study.
However, two key lawmakers and the state's chief highway safety expert all said Monday it would be difficult to adopt tougher teen driver rules in a state where many young people in rural communities rely on cars and pickup trucks to drive to school, work and other activities.
CEDAR RAPIDS — Motorists on Interstate 380 and Highway 30 will soon encounter more information on their commutes — whether they want it or not.
The Iowa Department of Transportation is installing five new digital message signs — two on Highway 30 and three on Interstate 380 — said Cathy Cutler, a transportation planner with the DOT’s Cedar Rapids District 6 office.
A former communications director for the Iowa Democratic Party apologized Sunday for an Instagram picture taken in front of a gas-explosion site in New York City's East Village, after getting bashed by the NY Post and on social media.
In an email to The Des Moines Register, Christina Freundlich said she was "deeply sorry for my careless and distasteful post."
Scented candles, mulch and tropical fish are among the purchases Iowa law enforcement agencies have made with some of the nearly $43 million they have seized in the past six years using state and federal civil forfeiture laws.
Such spending adds fuel to a national debate over whether police have an incentive to pad their departments' budgets with cash and other assets seized from people who frequently aren't even charged with a crime.
DES MOINES — A Senate committee voted Thursday to establish a comprehensive medical cannabis program for Iowans seeking relief from debilitating diseases, as well as conditions that proponents say build in safeguards to prevent legalized use of marijuana for recreational purposes.
“This is a very important bill,” said Sen. Bill Dotzler, D-Waterloo, before a 9-5 vote by the Senate Ways and Means Committee that would authorize the production and dispensing of medical cannabis for expanded uses and medical conditions. “People’s lives, I believe, are at stake and their health and well-being is at stake.”
On March 26 and 27, 2015, the Secretary of State's office plans to mail cards to voters who have had no activity in the last four years. This annual "four year no activity" mailing is required by law, and is an important part of keeping the voter rolls up to date.
If you get a card at your home for someone who doesn't live there, don't throw it away! It is very important that you check the box that applies, make notes if needed, sign it - we can't make any changes unless you sign it! - and return it to our office.
Until 1994, Iowa voter registrations were cancelled after four years with no activity. But since the National Voter Registration Act, better known as "Motor Voter," took effect in 1995, no one's registration is cancelled simply for not voting. Instead, the cancellation process depends on whether or not you can get mail at your address.
A Four Year No Activity card is not a cancellation of your voter registration. It's simply a double-check and a reminder. Cards are sent to all voters who have not:
Voted in any election
Registered or re-registered to vote
Updated their address or any other information
If your card is returned to our office as undeliverable, or returned and signed by someone saying you no longer live there, we can then begin the process of cancellation.
If you get a card for someone who doesn't live at your address:
Indicate on the reply card that the person does not live at your address, sign the card, and return it to our office. We can then place the person on inactive status. However, we can't completely cancel the registration without the voter's own signature unless:
we get notice from another community that the voter has registered there;
we get notice that the voter has died or been convicted of a felony; or
the voter has been inactive through two general elections.
If the card is not returned, the law requires us to assume that the person still lives there. We may not get a chance to take them off the rolls for another four years. (Political campaigns will also assume the person still lives there, so you'll probably get mailings and phone calls.)
If the person is a family member or someone you know, please contact them and encourage them to contact our office.
If you receive a four year no activity card for yourself and your address is correct:
Check the box marked "I am the person named above and I still live at the address listed above," sign the card, and return it to our office. This will show up as activity on your voter registration record.
If you receive a four year no activity card and the address is incorrect:
Check the box marked "I am the person named above but I no longer live at the address listed." Fill in your new street address and sign the card.
If your new address is inside Johnson County, your voter registration record will be updated and you will receive a new voter card. This will show up as activity on your voter registration record.
If your new address is outside Johnson County, your voter registration will be cancelled. IMPORTANT: This does not register you to vote in your new community! You will need to re-register at your new address.
If a four year no activity card is returned to our office as undeliverable by the Postal Service:
Your voter registration record will placed on inactive status. This is a preliminary step to cancellation.
Voters remain on the rolls with inactive status through two general elections. If you try to vote, you will be asked for ID and (if needed) to update your address. You will then be returned to active status.
Voters inactivated in 2015 will be cancelled after the 2018 general election. Records that were inactive through the 2012 presidential election and 2014 general election were cancelled earlier this year.
The law is designed to make it hard to cancel someone's voter registration without their knowledge. This is a good thing but it has some unintended consequences that make some voters especially hard to inactivate and cancel:
Young adults who have moved away from their parent's home. If the mail carrier keeps delivering mail to the parent's address, our office has no way of knowing the young adult has moved away, and we have to assume they still live there. Parents can sign the card and indicate their adult child has moved away, and this will allow us to place them on inactive status. However, we will not be able to completely cancel the registration without the voter's own signature.
Large group housing such as dorms, fraternity/sorority houses, and apartment buildings. It's very important for the new residents to sign and return the cards so we can inactivate the former residents.
Elderly voters who have moved to care centers. Unfortunately, if the person is no longer able to sign the card and indicate they no longer wish to vote, we cannot cancel their registration. Iowa law specifically excludes the use of power of attorney for voting and election matters.
On February 15, Iraq War veteran Richard Miles entered a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Des Moines, Iowa, and told the staff: "I need help," according to hospital records obtained by CNN.
He had told friends he was going to check himself in. He was diagnosed with "worsened PTSD," anxiety and insomnia, but Miles was not admitted to the hospital.