Bishop Martin Amos introduces newly appointed Bishop-elect Thomas Zinkula as the ninth bishop of Davenport on Wednesday at the St. Vincent Center in Davenport. “I will continue as apostolic administrator of the diocese until Bishop-elect Zinkula is installed and takes possession of the Diocese on June 22nd,” Amos said.

Kevin E. Schmidt, QUAD-CITY TIMES

Thumbs up to Bishop Martin Amos and welcome to his soon-to-be successor at the Catholic Diocese of Davenport, Monsignor Thomas Zinkula.

Amos came to a diocese in crisis in 2006, at the height of allegations of past sexual abuse. He helped steer the diocese through the bankruptcy and financial hardships that followed, while doing the important work of reaching out to survivors of abuse. Through it all, Amos remained steady.

The Diocese of Davenport is in a much better place because of his decade at its helm.

In will walk Zinkula on June 22, a lawyer, religious scholar and rector of St. Pius X Seminary in Dubuque. Zinkula immediately addressed issues such as priest shortages and burnout in his introductory comments. And did so with a certain sense of humor, particularly about how people tend to butcher his name. Zinkula looks to be up to the challenge of representing a religious community amid a changing political landscape.

"He's the right one, at the right time," Amos said of his replacement.

All signs support Amos' conclusion. 

A shrug to Davenport's decision to again extend the time Rhythm City Casino has to remove its now-empty barge.

The platform has proven difficult to get rid of. A few takers have expressed interest and completing any deal will take time. But, at some point, the barge becomes a leash on which riverfront development is tethered.

Extending the time period makes sense. But there also has to be a drop-dead end date, too.  

Thumbs up to Iowa Legislature for passing one of the few common-sense bills of the session.

The 2017 Legislature hasn't accomplished much on the positive end of the spectrum. School equity went nowhere. University funding was slashed. Weird culture war bills made it to the governor's desk.

Then there's the overhaul of Iowa's liquor laws. Included in the bill are provisions that finally level the playing field that, for too long, singled out liquor distillers to the benefit of beer and wine makers. It also maintains Iowa's generally solid three-tiered regulatory model.

Overall, the liquor overhaul represents a rare moment of consensus building in an otherwise hyper-partisan Capitol.

At least whiskey enthusiasts can say the glass is half full, anyway.