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6 more things you need to know for Wednesday, April 21, 2021

1 Cedar Rapids Police ID Victim In Northeast Side Shooting

(Cedar Rapids, IA) -- Cedar Rapids police identify a man who was recently shot and killed on the city's northeast side. Police say Davvion Flemings was shot to death in the 16-hundred block of 32nd Street last Thursday. Police believe the shooting was targeted. No arrests have been made.

2 Woman Charged With Arson In February Fire In Cedar Rapids

(Cedar Rapids, IA) -- A woman's charged with arson in connection with a house fire in Cedar Rapids earlier this year. The woman is accused of intentionally setting a home on fire in the two-thousand block of Eastern Boulevard Southeast back in February. Investigators say they found a gas can in the room where the fire started and a gas line had been cut and intentionally turned on. No one was hurt in the fire.

3 Unity Point Holding Walk-In Vaccine Clinics In Waterloo

(Waterloo, IA) -- Unity Point is holding walk-in coronavirus vaccination clinics in Waterloo. Unity Point says anyone over 16-years-old can walk in and get vaccinated at Unity Point Clinic Express-United Medical Park between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. daily. More information is available on the Unity Point website.

4 Iowa House Approves Rules For Electric-Assisted Bikes

(Des Moines, IA) -- The Iowa House gives final approval to a bill setting rules for electric-assisted bicycles across the state. The bill says electric bikes won't be allowed to travel over the speed limit where speed limits are posted. They also won't be allowed to go over 20 miles per hour where speed limits aren't posted.

5 Cedar Rapids Man Has Two Cars Stolen From House In A Week

(Cedar Rapids, IA) -- Cedar Rapids police are investigating after a man has two cars stolen from his house in a week's time. The victim tells KCRG-TV his Jeep and pickup truck were both stolen earlier this month. The Jeep was found destroyed and the truck was found with everything inside stolen. The victim has both thefts on surveillance video.

6 Iowa Closing In On 900-Thousand COVID-19 Vaccines Completed

(Undated) -- Iowa continues to inch closer to having 900-thousand people vaccinated against coronavirus. So far over 895-thousand people are fully vaccinated in the state. Nearly two-point-one-million people have gotten at least one vaccine dose.

7 Man Sentenced In 2018 East Moline Overdose Death

(Undated) -- A QuadCities man is headed to prison on drug charges. Ajayi McIntyre is accused of selling heroin to an East Moline man in 2018 who overdosed and died. McIntyre pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing heroin and was sentenced earlier this month to 18 years in federal prison.

8 Bettendorf 4th Of July Festivities Returning This Year

(Bettendorf, IA) -- A Bettendorf tradition is returning as more events are coming back after months of coronavirus-related shutdowns. Bettendorf city leaders say they will bring back 4th of July festivities this year, including the parade and fireworks. City leaders say some changes are in store, including only 70 entries being allowed in the parade. Festivities will take place July 3rd.

9 Tyson Foods Family Members Can Receive COVID-19 Vaccine At Plants

(Undated) -- The family members of Tyson Foods workers can now receive the coronavirus vaccine at Tyson plants. Tyson recently started holding vaccine events at plants in Illinois, Indiana, Texas, Oklahoma, and Virginia. Tyson says close to 40-thousand employees have been vaccinated.

10 Two More Arches Placed On I-74 River Bridge

(Moline, IL) -- More progress is made on the new Interstate-74 River Bridge. On Tuesday two more arches were put into place on the bridge. The I-74 River Bridge Facebook page says there's one arch left to be placed, followed by the keystone. The Facebook page says it will provide an update when the keystone installation gets closer.

11 QuadCities Activists React To George Floyd Verdict

(Moline, IL) -- There is a sense of relief among activists in the QuadCities, but there is also an expectation of more. Local activists yesterday said the guilty verdict in George Floyd's death is a 'small step' forward for this country. Bri Williams with the local Black Lives Matter chapter said she hopes the country gets the message that BLM won't back down in its fight. Activist Eric Puryear said he's surprised by the verdict, because he said police officers often 'get away with murder.'

12 Bettendorf Accepting Fourth Of July Parade Applications

(Bettendorf, IA) -- It is the latest sign of a return to normal this summer. Bettendorf is accepting applications for this year's Fourth of July Parade. The city canceled last year's parade because of the coronavirus. Bettendorf says this year's parade will be a bit smaller, with just 70 entries, but the plan for a full celebration is on track.

13 RICO State's Attorney Showed DeShawn Tatum's Family Police Body Cam Video

(Rock Island, IL) -- DeShawn Tatum's family has seen the police body camera video of the shootout that took his life. Rock Island County State's Attorney Dora Villarreal yesterday said she showed the family the video. Villareal is not saying when she will release the video to the public. She is also not saying anything about charges in the case. Police say Tatum was wanted, stole a car, tried to flee, and shot at officers. One officer was grazed in the head by a bullet. Officers shot and killed Tatum during a shootout back on April 1st.

14 Rock Island County Board To Shrink

(Rock Island, IL) -- There will be fewer elected county leaders in Rock Island County. The county board last night agreed to shrink the board from 25 people to 19. Voters have supported downsizing the board for years, a referendum question in 2012 showed 72-percent of voters wanted a smaller county board. It will take some time to make the change, however. The county can't draw a new political map for the board until the Census is completed, and that's been delayed.

15 Illinois Local Leaders Worry About Less State Money

(Springfield, IL) -- Local mayors from across Illinois say they cannot afford another budget cut from state government. A number of local leaders yesterday held a virtual news conference to push back on Governor JB Pritzker's plan to cut what's known as Local Government Distributive Funds. That's the local share of Illinois' income tax. Local governments used to get 10-percent of the sales tax money, but they get six percent now. Governor Pritzker wants to cut that even further.

16 Freeze Warning In Effect For Much Of Iowa

(Undated) -- A freeze warning is again in effect for much of Iowa including Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Ames, and the QuadCities. Those areas could see below-freezing temperatures throughout the early morning. There could also be some light rain showers this afternoon. Warmer temperatures are expected to return Thursday and Friday.

17 Two Men Charged With Hate Crimes In Des Moines Assault

(Des Moines, IA) -- Two men are charged with hate crimes in connection with an assault in Des Moines. A criminal complaint accuses Joseph Rossing and Robert Shelton of assaulting and yelling racial slurs at a black man last weekend. They're facing several charges including willful injury and assault-violation of individual rights.

18 Centerville Man Sentenced To 27 Years In Prison For Child Porn

(Des Moines, IA) -- A Centerville man will spend the next 27 years in prison on child pornography charges. The U.S. Department of Justice says Ryan Ford was sentenced earlier this month for producing and receiving child porn. Ford will spend ten years on probation after his prison sentence. The DOJ says Ford sexually exploited children in 2018 and 2019.

19 Johnston Woman Accused Of Stealing Money From Employer

(Polk Co., IA) -- A Johnston woman's accused of stealing over 130-thousand dollars from her employer. Urbandale police say Jessica Samuelson is accused of taking money from the animal supplement business where she worked for two months. She's accused of forging the owner's signature on checks and using the owner's credit card without permission. She was arrested Tuesday.

20 Invasive Jumping Worms Showing Up In Iowa Gardens

(Undated) -- An invasive jumping worm from Asia is spreading across the Midwest, including Iowa. The worms are about eight inches long, damage gardens, and make soil start to look like coffee grounds. When picked up they start to thrash and jump around. Horticulturalists say there's no known way to get rid of them.

21 Wisconsin Nearing Four Million Vaccine Doses

(Madison, WI) -- Wisconsin should hit another coronavirus vaccine milestone by the end of the week. The state's Department of Health Services yesterday said doctors and nurses have administered three-point-nine-million vaccine doses so far. The state is on pace to hit four-million doses in a matter of days. Just over 40-percent of people in the state have gotten one dose of the vaccine. DHS says 27-percent have gotten both doses.

22 Wisconsin Lawmakers To Look At School Report Cards Today

(Madison, WI) -- Wisconsin schools are going to get the chance to make the bid that their grades shouldn't count against them. Lawmakers have a hearing today on a number of proposed laws and rules dealing with public schools in the state. One of those deals with school accountability reports. School leaders have said for months that coronavirus disruptions have made it difficult or impossible to see just where students are, compared to where they should be.

23  (KCRG) - UnityPoint announced that people eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccination are able to walk in without an appointment and receive the vaccine at certain locations. The announcement comes as the supply of the vaccines continues to increase. UnityPoint said anyone age 16 and over can walk in to receive a vaccine between 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. at UnityPoint Clinic Express – United Medical Park located at 1731 W Ridgeway Ave. in Waterloo. 

24 (KCRG) - Donald Maas had been trying to get the COVID-19 vaccine for a while. On Tuesday, however, he got lucky at Dubuque County’s first walk-in vaccine clinic inside Kennedy Mall. He said he was in and out quick. Patrice Lambert, director of the Dubuque County Public Health Department, said vaccine providers were struggling to fill-in appointments. Lambert said that is why the county decided to try something different with letting people get shots with no appointment. Tuesday’s clinic was the first of four the county is hosting this week to try to make vaccines more accessible to people, and within the first 45 minutes, the clinic had to temporarily stop accepting walk-ins as it was running out of vaccines. Lambert explained that, when that happens, they get a second vaccine provider to assist in providing more vaccines. The county will still be holding three more walk-in clinics this week:

25 (KCRG) - Hundreds of feet in the air, one can see the makings of what will soon be the Lost Island Theme Park in Waterloo. Park Developer Eric Bertch says they’re making real progress. Lost Island Waterpark opened in 2001, and has won national awards. Now, the focus is on reaching people throughout this part of Iowa, with a new option. Bertch said they decided a theme park would have the biggest impact, and expects the park to see more than double the attendance the water park sees, bringing more people to the area and filling a gap in the family entertainment industry.

Travis Hall, the executive director for Experience Waterloo, said the new theme park could play a key role in overall economic recovery after so much had to shut down in 2020. Hall said even with the park only being open a few months out of the year, he expects the total economic impact will be about $32 million a year once open. Broken down, $6 million for food and beverage, $5 million for retail, $4 million for hotel stays, and $2 million for recreation. Hall adds this attraction will add to the return of other events expected to draw attention locally and out of state. Even 13 months until the anticipated opening, the eyes will see the new rides, but park developers hope the ears will hear concerts, and more than just rollercoasters.

26 (KWQC) -- A local program that fills the gap left after high school for young adults with disabilities, is providing them with lifesaving skills. Hand In Hand’s People With Purpose is Hand In Hand’s adult dayhab program that lets participants gain social engagement while getting involved with the Quad Cities community and volunteering at a variety of area charities and organizations. The goal of the People With Purpose program is to give adults with disabilities opportunities five days a week to be social, have fun, learn new skills and make a positive impact on their community. The classes are being taught by Everyday Heroes CPR Training. Victoria Winters-Olson, with Everyday Heroes CPR Training, donated her time to teach People with Purpose. She also teaches CPR and Basic Life Support classes for community members as well as for professional certification at Hand in Hand too.

27 (KCRG) - A new organization started by University of Iowa students aims to help struggling students make ends meet. Sydney Uhlman is a sophomore at the University of Iowa and is one of the cofounders of the UIowa Mutual Aid Network. Uhlman says she grew up in the Iowa foster care system, so she understands how struggling students feel. She says the pandemic is shedding light on the amount of students struggling to make ends meet, saying there are resources on campus to help, but not enough, especially during a pandemic. That’s why Uhlman helped launch the organization at the end of March.

She said it’s already gotten 100 requests for help. 97 of those requests came in the first week the organization launched. Students can use the money to pay for things like groceries, rent, or even textbooks. Uhlman says they’ve been able to help around 30 students so far, and the biggest request has been for groceries. She says there is a food pantry on campus at the University of Iowa, but limited hours impact accessibility for some students. The second most requested need has been for rental assistance.

28 (KWQC) - The restaurant industry in Iowa is seeing a gradual comeback with many restaurants across the state hiring. The Iowa Restaurant Association said Iowa’s restaurant industry lost an estimated $1.45 billion due to the pandemic, but it’s in the initial phases of recovery. Jessica Dunker, the President, and CEO of the Iowa Restaurant Association says individuals seeking work don’t have to look far to find openings. Dunker said pre-COVID, 51% of every dollar people spent on food was in the restaurant industry. That number went down to 35-38% when restaurants were hit by various mitigations. She said now it’s back up to 46%. Dunker attributed multiple factors to the increased need for employees including restaurants needing to hire people back quickly, former restaurant workers finding work in other industries, and people waiting to go back.

The Iowa Restaurant Association said before the pandemic, about 155,000 Iowans were employed in the industry and there was a net loss of 25,000 jobs by the end of 2020. While the increase in hiring is a welcome change, Dunker said it may be some time before the industry fully recovers. As recovery continues, Dunker said they’re looking forward to the future.

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