We will try to add information about the regional meetings and events as they happen in this column. If you wish to learn more about your regional activities, please click here for a list of regional coordinators or here for a map of the regions.
Northeast – Beth Bonz, City Administrator, Asbury
Amanda Kaufman, Asst to the City Manager, Marion
New co-coordinators in the Northeast Region, Amanda Kaufman and Beth Bonz recently reported on their meeting.
Those attending the luncheon included: Amanda Kaufman, Lon Pluckhahn, Tim Vick, Tim Long, Steve Lindner, Doug Herman, Steve Diers, Chelsea Huisman and Beth Bonz.The open- format discussion lead to many varied topics being covered.
Libraries – Marion, Center Point and Asbury are planning to build or add on to current facilities. Marion is funding the library through LOST and increasing the library tax levy. Center Point and Asbury are seeking grant funding and private donations in addition to city support.
Fuel for vehicles. Monticello has purchased a police vehicle that runs on propane and Marion has dump trucks and garbage trucks that use natural gas. This requires special fueling stations and training. The upside is both fuels are less expensive then traditional gas powered vehicles.
AVL tracking on police vehicles through the IDOT. This has proven helpful within law enforcement to track the location of vehicles in an emergency and as a source to answer questions to public regarding vehicle location.
Amanda Kaufman sent a survey to members to get member opinions on future meetings. Based on the survey results, members present agreed to meet quarterly, move the date to Friday, over the lunch hour, float locations and to keep the meetings as open discussion.
Steve Diers in Independence will host the next meeting on Friday, January 31, 2014 in Independence at the Okoboji Grill.
North Central – Ron Dunt, City Manager, Hampton
The NC Region met on November 15th at Ridge Stone Country Club in Sheffield. Ron reports a solid turnout and great discussion. They next plan to meet in February or March.
Des Moines Metro – Josh Heggen, Community Development Director, Norwalk
The Des Moines Metro City/County Administrators/Managers continue to meet on a monthly basis. Topics of discussion range from the upcoming legislative session to the local government collaboration. Recently, public works directors and fire chiefs from several cities presented to the group on a Capital Crossroad project objective (http://www.capitalcrossroadsvision.com) to increase local government collaboration. The public works directors are working on a metro wide debris management plan, not only for large scale disasters, but for the impending Emerald Ash Borer. In 2014 we will continue to meet on a monthly basis, except during the month when IMMI and the summer IaCMA Conference is held.
Central – Luke Nelson, City Administrator, Boone
The Central Region reports that they are working through meeting schedules and coordinator rotations and will convene again when the budget season concludes.
South / Southeast – Dan Gifford, City Administrator, West Burlington
Dan reported that the SSE group met on November 19 in Mount Pleasant. The topic for discussion for that meeting was primarily election related with most reporting favorable election results.
They will be setting up a meeting for late February or early March.
South Central – Michael Schrock, Jr., City Manager, Oskaloosa
The next meeting for the SCCM group is on January 8th from 11:30am – 1:00pm, with the location to be determined. Other than the typical community updates and reports, we are planning on having a guest speaker to specifically review collective bargaining and successful strategies to get mutually agreed upon settlements (when and if possible).
On November 13, 2013 the SCCM group met in Newton for lunch and to discuss the upcoming elections and other community matters. We also had a program on Newton’s efforts to adopt and implement updates to their Comprehensive Plan. Bob Knabel, City Administrator in Newton had three of his staff members present an overview of the plan, how it was changed, lessons learned, core priorities within the document itself and how the organization was able to earn community and council buy-in.
On September 18, 2013 the SCCM group met in Oskaloosa for lunch and to share projects and issues. The program for this luncheon was a presentation and tour of a local public-private partnership project between the City of Oskaloosa and the Oskaloosa Downtown Development (ODD) group. The speaker was Jim Hansen, President of the ODD group. This partnership led to a $5 million renovation of downtown buildings with new residential over retail (6 apartment units upstairs with the potential to more than double that in the future, and white box space for retail on the ground floor).
On May 9, 2013 the SCCM group held a joint meeting with the South West City Manager group in Osceola. This meeting was a more informal get together over lunch with no program for the day, but just an opportunity to meet other managers from across the state and get to know one another better.
Southeast and Bi-State – Steve Lindner, City Administrator, DeWitt
Steve reports that the Bi-State group met in Coal Valley, IL on December 6. He says they will take a break from meeting in January and will meet in DeWitt Friday, February 7.
Save the date for the IaCMA Summer Conference
The IaCMA Summer Conference will be held at Honey Creek Resort State Park on Lake Rathbun July 9-11, 2014. The State Park features an indoor water park, golf course, bike rentals and other resort activities for the entire family. For more information about the resort, visit http://www.honeycreekresort.com The IaCMA Professional Development Committee will soon be pulling together session ideas and speaker ideas. If you have any speaker suggestions or topics for discussion, please email Josh Heggen at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Iowa League of Cities seeks input and ideas for sessions for the 2014 Annual Conference & Exhibit in Council Bluffs.
If you have ideas for educational sessions, a great project that others may enjoy learning about or a unique way in which your community has solved a problem please share this with Mark Tomb, Director of Membership Services or Mickey Shields, Assistant Director of Membership Service.
And from Jeff Schott…
Iowa Municipal Management Institute (IMMI) – Mark your calendars for the 26th annual IMMI which will be March 19 – 21 at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Iowa City. As you may know, ICMA has selected IMMI as the site for their Midwest Regional Summit and Young Professional Leadership Institute (we are the first state-wide professional development conference chosen by ICMA for one of their regional summits) – which will offer extra opportunities in terms of professional development and networking – at no extra cost to IMMI participants. The registration and hotel reservation information will be sent out electronically in mid-January (We will be using a joint conference registration form with ICMA. For Iowa participants, just register for IMMI and that will entitle you to participate in any of the ICMA Midwest summit and/or YPLI sessions.)