The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

May 13, 2014

Survey will seek input on Iowa's small towns

AGENCY — Many small towns in Iowa struggle to survive even though they offer quality of life features that are hard to find in big cities. Understanding these unique features is the goal of a new Iowa State University study.

Researchers Terry Besser, Stephen Sapp, Deborah Tootle and Georgeanne Artz have received a grant from the United States Department of Agriculture to study the quality of life in Agency and other small towns and assess how these characteristics affect community survival.

This is the third time Agency has been selected to participate in an ISU study of community life. The first time was in 1994 when researchers surveyed about 15,000 residents randomly selected from 99 communities — one in each county. Residents in the same towns were surveyed in 2004 and another group of residents will again be asked to participate in 2014. The three studies spanning 20 years can provide valuable insight into the changes in small-town life over the last 20 years and the effectiveness of various development strategies.

“We have the wonderful opportunity in this study to learn how the events of the 1990s and the 2000s impacted small-town life. This knowledge will be useful for small-town leaders and residents in their efforts to help their towns survive and even thrive in the future," Besser said.

Within the next two weeks, researchers will contact randomly selected households in Agency by mail and ask a designated adult in the household to participate in the study. Each person who receives a survey represents 20 to 35 other Agency residents. Therefore, it is vitally important that those selected complete and return the survey.

It will take several months, perhaps as long as a year, before the survey process is completed and the information is analyzed. At that time, a report of the results will be made publicly available through local extension offices, the local newspaper and/or library and directly through Iowa State University’s Department of Sociology website.

Any questions may be directed to Besser at tbesser@iastate.edu or Sapp at ssapp@iastate.edu.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 0730 OTT Better Buildings -T -M Wildwood could be your home OTTUMWA — There was always one child per class who just adored school. If they went to Wildwood, they may soon be able to move in permanently. The Ottumwa board of education met Monday, where staff told them where the district stood as far as "facili

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • A changing roster -- for school board OTTUMWA — If the last time you saw your board of education was before Christmastime, the current school board might surprise you. Two members retired from the board: longtime educator Ron Oswalt stepped down, as did board president Carol Mitchell. Bo

    July 29, 2014

  • Lottery sales top $3 million mark

    OTTUMWA — Mother Nature may have thrown Iowans a brutal winter, but it didn’t stop them from venturing out to buy lottery tickets. On Tuesday, the Iowa Lottery confirmed that it had topped the $3 million mark in sales for the third consecutive year.

    July 29, 2014

  • halo-5-guardians-concept_wallpaper-1920x1080-53cf9b0098ea45ada37dc0f66bc174f5.jpg The Art of Kong

    OTTUMWA — The Mona Lisa. Whistler's Mother. Donkey Kong? Don't be so surprised, said Walter Day, that video games and the surrounding memorabilia are being considered art. The creativity and artistic vision required to create a poster, said the found

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Slideshow: Truck overturns on roundabout

    July 28, 2014

  • 0729 OTT Picture veteran -T -M Veteran finally receives his medals OTTUMWA — A World War II injury may have saved the life of a U.S. Coast Guardsman from Iowa, but he lost friends and a box of military awards. Francis Hardy Harbour was born on Dec.16, 1919, in Drakesville. He joined the Coast Guard in 1941 as a mach

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Seasonal forecast Cool summer leading to cool fall? OTTUMWA — By late July, the average daytime high temperature starts to drop. What is normally the hottest part of the year is over. Averages are still in the mid-80s, and it certainly wouldn’t be out of the ordinary to see days in even the upper 90s.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • IHCC buildings.jpg Grant helps Hills keep students on track

    OTTUMWA — Thanks to a grant designed to improve graduation rates, Indian Hills Community College now has even more tools in its campuswide effort to help students with needs and give them the resources they need to stay in class. Indian Hills is one

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0728 OTT ribs in eldon BBQ dinner with a hundred friends

    ELDON --- This year's Eldon Rib Cook-off was won by three BBQ chefs --- and about 150 hungry visitors. "I was down here last year, too," said Dwayne Yates from Floris, who was biting into his third smoked rib. "I never had a bad one yet." That's what

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mediacom: Rural cable consumers and companies mistreated OTTUMWA --- You may want to add just a racing channel, a court channel or a nature channel to your cable line up. Unfortunately, you'll probably have to buy a "bundle," which, ironically, is what it will cost you here in Wapello County. That's accord

    July 26, 2014

Photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook