Q. Do you know what is being built on the corner of Locust Street and Eastern Avenue in Davenport? — Candy, Bettendorf, and Mary, Davenport

A. According to Craig Cooper, senior communications specialist for Genesis Health System, "Genesis has removed an office building at Locust Street and Eastern Avenue. Under construction on the site is a Welcome Park to the Genesis Medical Center, East Rusholme Street Campus. There will be a bus stop and bus shelter on the site, plantings and landscaping, seating and a directional sign to the medical center."

To view an artist's rendering of the Welcome Park and photos of the current construction, visit qctimes.com/askthetimes.

Q. Wisconsin has a law that you cannot cut cattails (wetland protection). Does Iowa have a law about this? — Eldridge reader

A. Alex Murphy, director of communications for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, said:

"Here is the answer I received from our experts at the DNR:

"Wisconsin does have a state wetland protection law, but Iowa does not. If the regulation against cutting of cattails appears in the Wisconsin state rule, Iowa has no counterpart to it. I still wonder if the Wisconsin rule is an outright prohibition or something less, perhaps a requirement for a permit prior to action.

"Wetland rules in Iowa stem from two sources of federal law: 1) Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, which is carried out by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who asks the Iowa DNR for comments on wildlife habitat certification in cases where the Corps determines that a wetland falls under their jurisdiction (not all wetlands do) and 2) Farm Bill rules administered by NRCS. Neither of those explicitly prohibit the cutting of cattails, but there might be certain circumstances in which mowing of wetland vegetation might be addressed.

"For the Corps, if the mowing was not simply mowing, but part of a larger plan to excavate or fill a jurisdictional wetland, the Corps could approve or disapprove a permit submitted by the applicant ... but if the action involved ONLY mowing of cattails with no excavation or filling, there would be no issue.

"Through its Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) and other contractual programs with farmers, the NRCS can engage in contracts with farmers that require the maintenance of wetlands. These contracts may have provisions that affect the timing and other circumstances of mowing (and other manipulations) of wetland vegetation. However, these provisions are part of a contract to which the farmer/landowner would have agreed in advance by signing the contract."

Ask the Times appears on Thursdays and Saturdays. You can call 563-333-2632, email ask@qctimes.com or write Ask the Times, Quad-City Times, 500 E. 3rd St., Davenport, IA 52801.

 

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