1. Dog-fighting terms
A case that started with raids in April 2016 is beginning to wind down as seven of 10 defendants in a federal dog-fighting case were sentenced last week. The sentencing hearing for nine of the defendants began Thursday and lasted all day Friday, too. Two of those nine will be back in court this week to hear their sentences. All nine had pleaded guilty to various charges related to dog-fighting. The case against a 10th defendant is pending.
2. Big birthday
The First Army may be relatively new to the Quad-Cities; it moved its headquarters to the Rock Island Arsenal in 2011 after the last Base Realignment and Closure Commission process. But the First Army has been around a while, and on Friday, it kicked off a year of celebrations and activities related to its 100th anniversary, which is in 2018. The formal ball Friday night was just the start; watch for more events in coming months.
3. Arsenal analysis
Elsewhere on Arsenal Island, officials are seeking a firm to study whether a private partner should operate the island's golf course, clubhouse and Quarters One, once the home to the island's top military officer. It's an early step toward a possible public-private partnership that would change how the properties are managed. Col. Kenneth Tauke, commander of the Arsenal garrison, said he hopes to go to the Department of the Army for a decision on whether to move forward by the end of the year.
4. Street debate
The city of Bettendorf is continuing to consider changes to its downtown traffic patterns, possibly turning both State and Grant streets into two-way roads. Last week, officials said the project would cost $21.8 million to $24 million, according to a feasibility study by Snyder & Associates. The idea is to make Grant Street the main thoroughfare through downtown and make State a more walkable and accessible street. The city will make a decision later about going forward with the project.
5. Cameras coming
After a year of study and tests, the Davenport Police Department is ready to buy body cameras for its officers. On Wednesday, the Davenport City Council will be asked to spend $550,000 to purchase 150 cameras and accessories from Axon on a six-year project. Police Chief Paul Sikorski laid out the plan during a council committee-of-the-whole meeting last week. He said the department hopes to have officers wearing the cameras on duty by the first of the year.
6. Taco fight
Also at last week's council meeting, residents around the intersection of Kimberly Road and Sturdevant Street spoke out against a plan to build a Taco Bell restaurant there. David Parchetti, who owns several Taco Bell locations in the Quad-Cities, is seeking to have the city remove several conditions that were placed on development of the property when it was proposed for a Schnuck's grocery store 17 years ago. Residents, however, are concerned about safety and traffic issues if the restaurant is built. A decision could come on Wednesday, but it faces an uphill battle: Because of a high protest rate, eight of the 10 council members must approve it.
7. A TIF tiff
Scott County's Board of Supervisors will take its case about tax increment financing districts to state lawmakers. After the city of Riverdale approved a controversial TIF district for a residential development, supervisors want the Legislature to change TIF laws so that counties, and perhaps school districts, could veto plans that don't follow the spirit of the law and affect the counties' tax receipts.
8. Tate response
Davenport schools Superintendent Art Tate had a direct response to ethics charges lodged against him by the director of the Iowa Department of Education: Dismiss the case. The case stems from Tate's decision to spend more money per pupil than allowed by state law. He did so after years of complaints about inequities in the state's school funding failed to result in changes to the formula. The state Board of Educational Examiners filed the formal charges late last month, and last week, Tate filed his response. A hearing is scheduled for February.
9. Palmer party
It was a celebration for Palmer College of Chiropractic on Monday as the ribbon was cut for the $15 million R. Richard Bittner Athletic & Recreation Center. The 46,000-square-foot facility has been years in the making, and it's part of Palmer's efforts to provide more amenities for students and improve the student experience. The facility opened three weeks before the ceremony, and it's already getting strong use, Chancellor Dennis Marchiori said.
10. Cupcake class
OK, we're not talking about that easy class you took to improve your GPA. It's Cupcake School, and it's happening at the Davenport Public Library's Eastern Avenue branch. Jeff Cook, one of our crack photographers, checked it out and brought us several photos for Wednesday's Food page. There's one more chance yet to enroll. The last class is scheduled for 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28. To register, go to davenportlibrary.com or call 563-326-7832.