This is a hard time for all of us. We understand that. Aside from the concern about the spread of COVID-19, there is the loss of routines and, in many cases, income. People have good reason to be on edge.
This is a tough announcement to make. It was comforting for so many years to think of serious, lethal outbreaks of highly infectious diseases as having been confined safely to the history books or to fiction. The past several months have shown the world otherwise.
Newsrooms have a long, not always proud tradition of gallows humor. The jokes and stories that get passed around are rarely the kind of things we’d publish, especially when the people telling the stories have been in the business for a while.
Tuesday’s vote by the council on the Fiscal 2021 budget was no surprise to anyone who has paid attention to city government. Councils rarely make major changes to the budget proposal they receive from the finance department, and this time was no different.
The 2020 construction season is here. Weather delayed the streetscape work by a day, but it got going this week. It’s one of the higher-profile projects in Ottumwa, but Ottumwans are still in the dark about the other big one. With each day that passes, the silence at the former site of St. J…
There’s a lot going on right now in news, but we want to back up just a bit with this editorial and point out something before we get too far past the date.
I’m not a chilihead the way some people are. Don’t get me wrong, I probably use more than my share of hot sauce. When my wife and I were dating, she thought my parents’ cooking was too hot. Now she reaches for the Tabasco as readily as anyone.
This week’s statement from Wapello County Public Health on coronavirus fears was clear and warranted. At its heart, the message was that awareness and vigilance are warranted, but panic is not.
We can’t help but be concerned at how the application for a grant to help cover the costs of an intersection’s reconstruction near the city’s industrial park.
I’m writing this a few days early this week. I woke up this morning to news that the Boy Scouts of America declared bankruptcy amid thousands of abuse claims against the organization.
We understand why a lot of people are on edge about the new coronavirus, now called COVID-19, that has erupted in China and spread to a number of countries. Any time there’s a new disease it’s scary. Combine that with the ease by which this one appears to jump from one person to another, the…
The city’s budget throws into stark relief the difference between where Ottumwa is and where other cities our size are. It’s a deficit Ottumwa is unlikely to be able to make up anytime soon, which means the shortfalls may well become worse in the coming years.
Tuesday brought my favorite part of preparing items for our Ottumwa Life magazine. I got to head over to Heartland Humane Society to get photos for the Adoptable Pets section.
Monday night was a first for me. Even though I've lived in Iowa my whole life, I've never been to a caucus. That changed the other night, when I was assigned to cover Precinct 2.
It is impossible to say how deeply we disagree with the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling in the suit over the release of records from Ottumwa’s ill-fated RedSpeed experiment.
The Ottumwa Community School District should spend its holiday break doing some soul searching after this week’s debacle over an attempt to reprimand an employee for reporting suspected abuse.
I’ve written before about “Star Wars” being my first movie in a theater. It’s a bit odd to think this week’s release of “The Rise of Skywalker” ends the story arc that began all those years ago.
A few weeks ago Steve Dust, CEO of the Ottumwa Regional Legacy Foundation, made a presentation to the city council about proposed riverfront developments. Our editorial board met just a couple days later, and decided to invite him to make a similar presentation.
Last week a reader came into our office and asked about whether Ottumwa should have a ward system, rather than the at-large city council it currently has. We took the question to our editorial board, which met this week.
The City of Ottumwa is considering investing in the development of a hotel property adjacent to the Bridgeview Center. The primary goal of the investment, as stated by Councilmember Mark Roe during his editorial board interview, is to attract visitor spending and offset the existing public s…
The death of Chief Justice Mark Cady leaves a massive void in the Iowa judiciary. Aside from the shock of his death at 66, it comes at a time when the relationship of the judicial branch to the other levers of governmental power is under as much scrutiny as it has ever been. It is a delicate…
It’s not quite Thanksgiving yet, but any question about whether the holidays are upon us were answered by Santa’s downtown visit on Thursday and Friday evening’s hike through the Holiday Nights ’N Lights display.
Well, as predicted my resistance to Disney+ lasted all of about 12 hours this past week. The lure of Star Wars was too much to resist. Honestly, for a lifelong Star Wars fan “The Mandalorian” alone probably is worth the price.
Supervisor Brian Morgan’s comment that he was “shocked” by the number of ballots needed for last week’s elections could have described us when we heard just how many ballots were needed, too.
Last week’s announcement that Wells Fargo and the U.S. Small Business Administration would expand a microfinance program to Ottumwa was good news for the community. It’s tough to say just how much of an effect it will have, but it’s an encouraging step.
During this time of Thanksgiving, MANY THANKS to all past and current veterans, all law enforcement individuals, all First Responders, all Fireman - Thank you for your service in keeping us safe and protected.
Tuesday’s elections saw Ottumwa voters turn out five members of the school board, ensuring the board will look very different in the near future. It was an unmistakable statement of dissatisfaction with the current board.
I recently read an article in the Ottumwa Courier entitled, "City's concentration of power concerning." It was an interesting article, and seemed to point out a very problematic issue with the way our current administration, council, and Mayor have handled particular situations as of late. W…
There was something that jumped out at us from the Moulder and Associates’ description of the Ottumwa city administrator’s job, which was released Tuesday.
Many of the Courier’s editorials have points on which reasonable people can disagree. That’s normal and, frankly, healthy. Americans never have been much for marching in lock-step on issues for long.
The Courier’s editorial board has reservations about this year’s candidates for city council. While the board commended the candidates for stepping forward, none was a clear-cut match for both the office and the situation Ottumwa currently finds itself in.
The return of trout to Ottumwa was a boon for area anglers, but I never can watch the stocking of the ponds without recalling a scout trip I went on more than two decades ago.
The Courier’s editorial board wrapped up interviews with each of the four city council candidates Thursday night. We appreciate each taking the time to meet with us and explain their views on current city issues and what they see as Ottumwa’s path forward in a changing world.
Rob Freed’s comments about riding his bike across Iowa as part of a cross-country ride to raise awareness of the disease that took his son’s life weren’t specifically aimed at Ottumwa. But they still hit a mark.
This Week's Circulars
- Iowa: 34 new COVID cases, one death
- State announces 64 new COVID-19 cases
- JBS employee positive for COVID-19
- Ottumwa schools target April 13 return
- Blessings continues to feed many despite virus concerns
- Most Iowa COVID-19 patients are not hospitalized
- Reynolds orders additional businesses closed
- Milestones in need of volunteers
- COVID-19 case confirmed in Wapello County
- Mahaska County resident tests positive for COVID-19