Burlington Derailed — The Continuing Story

30 June

It’s In The Judge’s Hands Now


I have been skimming today’s filings in the railroad lawsuit. I had one profound sentence that jumped out at me in the railroad’s filing.

“What is most telling, however, is the City’s absolute failure to have cited a single case from any court in support of its position on this issue, much less a decision of the United States Supreme Court or Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.”

I felt this was a frivolous lawsuit when it was conceived. It still is. There is no preponderance of the evidence in the City's favor. Nothing but wishful thinking.

Ultimately, we are going to lose this lawsuit. It is only a question of how much bleeding will occur. Slagle, Power, Edwards, Courtney and Ell all need to be held accountable for this despicable waste of taxpayer dollars regardless of what Jimmy Olson thinks.

17:15:36 - SPIKE - No comments

Senator Courtney Obstructs Corruption Investigation


Spike:

Senator Courntey's political allies at the Tom Harkin Center in Des Moines got caught paying themselves more than Burlington's City Manager makes. The result has been public outrage and an investigation of the spending scandal at the Central Iowa Training and Employment Consortium.

Senator Courtney understands the public distress at this situation and hopes to remedy it by making the investigation go away as soon as possible. What a kind and caring man Senator Courtney is.

Who knows what could happen if this investigation continues. Some out-of-state reporter may confuse Des Moines the City with Des Moines the County and start an investigation of his own in Burlington.

Should such a geographically confused reporter not end up floating face down under the railroad bridge, what the reporter finds could bring real distress to Senator Courtney and his friends. Senator Courtney is probably acquainted with Archie Brooks of Des Moines and has no desire to get to know him better in Ft. Madison.

We should all be proud of Senator Courtney's efforts to keep us dumb and happy.

GW

I think the Feds will probably take investigative control of the matter since it involves Federal funding that was misappropriated. And then Courtney won't be asked for his opinion, only whether or not he is involved. Along with what did he know and when did he know it.

Spike

11:37:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Citizens Not Getting Value From Slagle Or Council


Spike -

"At this point it appears to me that we are getting much more than we are willing to pay for. I guess that is a great deal for Burlington, but it is not fair to Mr. Slagle." - Councilman Bill Ell

What am I missing here? Isn't it the goal of any employer to find the best-qualified employee for the least amount of money? Everywhere but Burlington this would be considered shrewd business. Ell's lament that it isn't "fair" to Mr. Slagle is just another indicator how far political correctness (or the union mentality) has encroached on our society.

In the world outside the Council Chamber raises are determined by job performance AND if the employer has the resources available to offer an increase. In Slagle's situation neither apply.

Last time I checked Slagle wasn't being held against his will. It should be up to him to determine whether or not he was receiving a "fair" wage and if not he has the option to seek other employment.

The argument that he is underpaid compared to other cities is a load of crap. Go to Monster.com and look up your job. I guarantee that someone, somewhere is willing to paid you more than you currently make, if qualified they'll hire you. Then the decision is yours, should you go or should you stay?

But according to the City Council, your current employer is somehow obligated to pay you the higher wage out of "fairness". Just doesn't happen.

If Slagle's job performance merits a raise then he should get it, not because it's fair or because comparable cities pay more, but because he earned it. If his performance doesn't merit a raise, then that should be an indication that we should be looking for a different City Manager.

Sign me,

A Citizen of this "Fair" City

Slagle cannot list the things he has done for this City that merit his pay raise. There is no performance, only occupancy of the city manager's chair contrary to Lost Key Ell's belief that we will all be swallowed by strife and anarchy if Slagle is fired.

You want proof why Burlington has problems, look no further than the multitude of incestuous relationships in city hall.

Spike


11:22:02 - SPIKE - No comments

Vote Ell Out - Big Disappointment, But Expected Behavior


Spike

How many Burlington residents are receiving a $3,100. pay raise this year? Not many are that fortunate. If they did, they would be very happy and appreciative.

Ell's comment that Bruce Slagle's $3,100 pay raise is just not fair and he is being mistreated are about as ridiculous as I have ever heard. If Slagle's salary is not good enough for him, he can pack his bags, go to another city and do us all a favor and take cry baby Ell with him.

The citizens need to wake up and vote these Ell types out. We should have never elected him. He was too close to the city management to be effective as a council member.

Burlington resident

Ell was put in office to do just what Slagle wanted him to do; just like Cry Baby King.

Spike
11:09:16 - SPIKE - No comments

School Board Superintendent Benefit Debacle


Spike,

Is anyone aware of the golden deal Burlington School Superintendent Mike Book was given when hired?

As I understand it from a very reliable source, Book AND his wife will be covered by our district's insurance until they are both 65. I believe he is 55 or thereabouts.

By rough calculation and using the top of the line insurance offered this will cost Burlington residents well over $100,000 for a non-employee (he will be leaving the district after the next school year).

And our teachers and support staff have to scratch and claw for meager raises.... There are many, many financial hijinx connected with Book"s tenure. More to follow.

LE

All I know is whomever writes these contracts is a master at screwing the taxpayers. First Slagle and now Book have these golden parachutes.

Book builds these monuments to himself and leaves us with the tax bill plus we get to pay his health benefits for 9-10 years. What the hell is wrong with you people?

If you have to offer these kinds of incentives to attract someone to work in Burlington, then we need to change the way we do business.

Spike

05:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

July 4th


Since the 4th of July is a few days a away we would like our readers to share their thoughts about the ideals our republic was founded on and how those ideals relate to the sad state of affairs in and around Burlington today.

How would our founding fathers view Slagle, Power, Edwards, Ell, King, Hoschek, Hinkle, Diewold, Tapp, Anderson and Heland to name a few?

Out-of-control taxes, the railroad lawsuit, library patrons held hostage, the crooked Democratic convention and a Sumo wrestling match between Slagle and Heland for overall control of the County are all fair game.

Let us know.

04:27:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Where is Dan Rather When You Need Him?


Spike,

The mystery of the Ell Slagle email remains. Did Ell write it? Did Ell express his "thoughts" to another who wrote it? Did Ell ask somebody else to write and send it without seeing it?

Does Mr. Ell's key discovery disorder effect his ability to use a keyboard? To rephrase in wording that would have been common in Ell's youth, can he even type?

Never having graded an essay of Mr. Ell's in an English class, I am no expert on his style. While Mr. Ell's did the right thing with his vote, there is no logic to why in his email quotes. The reasoning is rambling. The inability to apply logic in pursuit of persuasion makes me think Mr. Ell's expressed his thoughts to another for transcription.

The author obviously used their abilities of expression to spruce up Mr. Ell's efforts. Some of the words have more than four syllables. No poet however talented can hide the lack of rational thought. I would compare it to putting racing stripes on a Chrysler K car.

There are some things we do know for certain.

The message was not delivered in a stamped envelop after being delayed a few days in the dead letter office until a team of experts could determine to whom it was addressed. The letter was not written in crayon. All of the words in the letter did not contain two, or fewer, syllables. There was no smeared ink from having been in contact ethyl alcohol. No threats were made.

Given these facts, we must conclude that Burlington's Mayor had no hand in this message to the Advertiser.

This is a tough one. Perhaps an expert in determining the validity of journalistic source material could lend a hand. I hear Dan Rather is not doing much these days.

LK

Like most times "Lost Key" Ell's facts regarding Slagle's contract might be wrong. We heard from a source that did help write Slagle's contract and it is up to the Councill to decide whether Slagle gets a raise or not; and what amount.

We need Dan Rather. Even Rather would take the time to ask to see the contract in question. Something Jimmy Olson didn't do.

Spike


04:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Public Is Subservient To City Hall


Spike,

In Burlington, the term "public servant" has taken on an entirely new meaning. It used to refer to city and state employees. I think we all know who's serving who these days.

They serve themselves, and we pay for it! Where else on God's green earth do people get rewarded for mismanagement? We can't afford basic services, but we can hand out fat raises?

Where is Jon Stossel when you need him? Give me a break!!

BB

03:12:00 - SPIKE - No comments

What’s It Like To Ride The Shuttle?


Imagine going out in the yard and climbing on top of the big propane tank that has an oxygen tank to keep the propane fire burning white hot along with two of the biggest bottle rockets ever made duct taped to the sides of the propane tank. When you strap in you will find 3 more propane tanks at the back of your lawn chair. Everything beneath you weighs 4,523,850 pounds.

After a few hours of sitting there wanting to pee, somebody yells “ignition” and you wait for the propane tanks and bottle rockets to all light up and get really hot before your neighbor pulls the rope to let you go charging out across the pasture accelerating like a drunk mayor headed home from Gulfport.

While all of this is making noise, smoke and scaring the milk cows your ride is:

A. Burning liquid oxygen that travels through a 17” feed line at 2,787 pounds per second at a max flow of 17,592 gallons per minute.

B. Burning liquid hydrogen through a 17” feed line at 465 pounds per second with max flow of 47,365 gallons per minute.

C. Producing thrust equivalent to 7-1/2 Boeing 747 airplanes.

Meanwhile each one of your 1,300,000 pound bottle rockets will only last from here to Monmouth and will burn 1,100,000 pounds of solid propellant in slightly less than 75 seconds and will drop off out of fuel about 70 miles from Chicago. 75 seconds after you lit this contraption, you will be in Galesburg and accelerating.

About 9 minutes after launch your large propane tank will be jettisoned and it will land in the Indian Ocean, 8500 miles from the pasture.

When you’re burned up the Conoco card you will be traveling about 17,000 miles per hour or 25,295 feet per second (about 8 times faster than a rifle bullet) or about 4.8 miles per second or Sunnyside to Spirit Hollow in one second; upside down and backwards.

And you won’t even remember you still have to pee because you will grinning from ear to ear and relieved that the most complicated machine ever built by the lowest bidders is in one piece.

And for you aviation types that hate to figure weight and balance, in the first 60 seconds your gross weight is reduced about 2,400,000 pounds. And like all air vehicles, imagine controlling the CG for that. No wonder it goes up.

00:50:39 - SPIKE - No comments

Shuttle Training Aircraft




KSC-06PD-1260 (06/28/2006) --- KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. – Inside the Shuttle Training Aircraft (STA), STS-121 Pilot Mark Kelly takes control in the cockpit. Kelly and Commander Steven Lindsey will be making practice landings in preparation for the July 1 launch of Space Shuttle Discovery. Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett

00:16:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Shuttle Launch Prep Continues




Image above: In the early dawn of Wednesday morning, STS-121 Pilot Mark Kelly prepares to takeoff in the Shuttle Training Aircraft at Kennedy's Shuttle Landing Facility. The STA is a Grumman American Aviation-built Gulfstream II jet that was modified to simulate an orbiter’s cockpit, motion and visual cues, and handling qualities. In flight, the STA duplicates the orbiter’s atmospheric descent trajectory from approximately 35,000 feet altitude to landing on a runway. Because the orbiter is unpowered during re-entry and landing, its high-speed glide must be perfectly executed the first time. Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett

STS-121 Launch Readiness Press Conference

At Thursday's Launch Readiness Press conference NASA senior officials were in agreement that Discovery is ready to launch.

Mission Management Team chairman, John Shannon said, "other than some questionable weather we have no constraints for launch. We are extremely proud of the team and ready to go on Saturday and do what the team does best."

Mike Leinbach added, "cryogenic fuel loading is on hold due to a weather advisory. We have plenty of hold time remaining in the countdown so this is not an issue. We are not working any technical issues."

According to First Lt. Kaleb Nordgren giving a launch-day weather forecast, "one of our main concerns for launch is watching the anvils and we may have an isolated shower. In view of those things we are looking at a 60% probability of Kennedy weather prohibiting launch. There is just a 10% chance of probability of weather affecting tanking."

Participants included Mission Management Team chairman, John Shannon; Mike Suffredini, International Space Station Program manager; Mike Leinbach, shuttle launch director; Alan Thirkettle, International Space Station Program manager for the European Space Agency and U.S. Air Force First Lt. Kaleb Nordgren of the 45th Weather Squadron.

At the launch pad, preparations continue with the removal of the mid-deck and flight-deck platforms. Navigational systems are being tested and cryogenic reactants will be loaded into Discovery's fuel cell storage tanks.

Friday's Countdown Status Briefing with NASA Test Director Jeff Spaulding, STS-121 Payload Manager Debbie Hahn and Shuttle Weather Officer Kathy Winters will be broadcast live on NASA TV starting at 10 a.m. EDT.

+ Watch NASA TV

The launch countdown officially began at 5 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, at T-43 hours. Included in the countdown is nearly 28 hours of built-in hold time prior to a targeted 3:49 p.m. EDT launch on Saturday; it is the middle point in a launch window that extends for 10 minutes. The launch countdown will be conducted from the newly renovated Firing Room 4 of the Launch Control Center at Kennedy.
00:07:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Some Shuttle Rocket Science For You Sudoku Lovers


Just to make everyone dizzy.





Hell no, I'm not smart enough for these equations.

Courtesy of NASA

00:06:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Library Construction Cost Overrun


Spike,

Testing 1-2-3. Check your library facts, Spike.

Some of us already know them....

Mark Edwards

Why would you know the numbers and the public doesn’t? I doubt if the numbers fed to you are any more accurate than the numbers being fed to public.

From what I know about the library financial manipulation, I don't trust any of them including your source.

Spike

00:02:00 - SPIKE - No comments

29 June

Who Wrote Ell's Email? - "Pure and Ethical" Question


Spike,

I know Bill Ell and have talked to him many times. He doesn't speak like the quotes the advertiser used to tell the story about his "no" vote reasoning.

So who wrote that email; Slagle?

WR

Seems like a "pure and ethical" question to me. I don't think Ell did. I'd like to know where the email was sent from, home or work?

Spike


12:00:35 - SPIKE - No comments

No Clue Ell


Spike,

It is clear to me Bill Ell has no business being on city council. He's spending my money to pay for his buddy's golf game and drinks on the 19th hole.

What's the matter with these people?

RT

No wonder the keys to the schools were hidden for 7 months. And whomever was on the council that guaranteed Slagle an automatic pay raise each year should be run out of town.

Who the hell negotiated that deal?

Spike

11:57:32 - SPIKE - No comments

Council Has No Sense Of Reality


Hi Spike

Is Bill Ell an idiot, or what? He said he voted no on the pay raise because he did not like the process?

This is the dumbest thing he has ever said, did he not know this vote could have stopped the raise?

The council has failed as far as I am concerned, they have no sense of reality or responsibility to the city.

I am especially disappointed in Mike Campbell I really felt he could lead this town back to prosperity by making good decisions's. But this was not a good decision on his part.

Thanks Spike

JO

11:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Ashamed Of This Town


Well Spike,

Slugle got his raise, and I am at a loss for words on how he deserved it. Taxes are at an all time high, city services are at an all time low. Burlington streets are shot to hell, money that could have been spent on repairing them.

No new decent paying jobs have entered this town in a long time. Crazy lawsuits going nowhere. A library that nobody wanted; remember, it was voted down. Intoxicated City officials given special privileges.

I could keep going on, but if the citizens of Burlington actually think he deserves a raise, then they need not do nothing and keep the current city council. I am actually ashamed of this town. I can't vote in city election since I reside in rural Des Moines county.

AND I DID NOT VOTE FOR HELAND.


CT

You might get your chance to share in the wisdom of City Hall now that Heland is going to help solve the county's problems.

If he gets elected.

Spike


04:59:00 - SPIKE - No comments

The Disgrace of Freedom


Spike:

The military pay raise passed on June 22 came to a meager 2.2 percent, which is the same congress gave itself this year, although congress didn't deserve a raise.

Yet, here in Loserville our city manager warranted a raise of 3.4 percent or was it 3.5%? Whatever it was the taxpayer was deceived and then shot in the back by our dead beat city council.

Who the hell voted these people into our lives?

Another great decision that makes one's stomach turn.

TH

It is a disgrace. Especially when we pay our military so little money to defend the rights of our city council to give a jackass like Slagle an unwarranted pay raise for extremely marginal job performance.

Cost of living adjustment?

What about the cost of dying; in that sandbox hell-hole and everywhere else we send our military?

Spike

04:52:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Important Information!


Spike,

Just discovered inside information on how the council came up with the 3.5% number as a raise for Slagel.

3.5 is what Drunkie blew on his last Breathalyzer.

Has to be it.

CQ

I just knew there had to be empirical data behind the magic formula. I thought it was the number of months the average 5th time drunk driver spent in prison.

Spike
04:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

"Brain, What is Brain?" The Mayor of Burlington


Spike:

Do local elected officials have their brain simply removed before assuming office, or after removal are they given an abnormal brain?

I would imagine that S.E. Iowa's playing host to state penal and mental health insitutions should provide Barron Herr Doktor Professor Slagle with a good supply of abnormal brains. Substance abuse and sociopathic behavior are a common demoninator for admission to the aforesaid state institutions as well as political office in Des Moines County.

Should a specialists be brought in to settle whether no brain, or a defective brain, accounts for the actions of local elected officials?

KL

All you need to fix the problem is unplug the Brain-Vac.

Spike

04:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

STS-121 Shuttle Launch Countdown Starts



NASA Release

The launch countdown officially began at 5 p.m. EDT Wednesday at the T-43 hour mark. Included in the countdown are nearly 28 hours of built-in hold time prior to a targeted 3:49 p.m. launch on Saturday; it is the middle point in a launch window that extends for 10 minutes. The launch countdown will be conducted from the newly renovated Firing Room 4 of the Launch Control Center at Kennedy.

During a countdown status briefing this morning at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, NASA Test Director Jeff Spaulding announced that "Discovery is in excellent shape."

"We're tracking no issues in our preparation at this point. Our teams have been working tirelessly during this last year to help make this flight and all shuttle flights as safe as possible for the crews," he said. "As we approach our nation's 230th birthday, I'm proud to announce that the launch vehicle, the launch and flight teams and flight crew are ready to launch and continue our mission completing the space station."

STS-121 Payload Manager Debbie Hahn indicated the payloads have been loaded into the orbiter and are ready for flight.

Launch Weather Officer Kathy Winters reported there is a 60-percent chance that weather may prevent launch on Saturday. A Bermuda high could improve the weather, but the Space Coast will be dealing with thunderstorms and anvil clouds which could be an issue because of lightning strikes. In the event of a 24-hour delay, the forecast is identical -- with a 60-percent chance of weather delaying the launch. The chance of weather constraints, if the launch is delayed 48 hours, stays at the 60-percent mark because of thunderstorm activity.

Tune in to NASA TV at 10 a.m. Thursday for the Countdown Status Briefing and an update on the launch status and weather forecast for mission STS-121 with NASA Test Director Pete Nicolenko and Shuttle Weather Officer Kathy Winter.

At 4 p.m. Thursday, NASA TV will host a Launch Readiness News Conference with Mission Management Team chairman, John Shannon; Mike Suffredini, International Space Station Program manager; Mike Leinbach, shuttle launch director; Alan Thirkettle, International Space Station Program manager for the European Space Agency; and U.S. Air Force First Lt. Kaleb Nordgren of the 45th Weather Squadron. They will discuss the preparations for the 32nd flight of Space Shuttle Discovery.

Both exciting events can be seen live on NASA TV.
00:08:00 - SPIKE - No comments

28 June

Kites and Electrical Storms Over City Hall


Spike:

Does Dr. Slagle's lab assistant maintain a supply of abnormal brains for transplant into City Council members elect?

If so, was the brain bestowed on the Mayor stored in a solution with too much alcohol? In the Burlington remake of the 1933 classic, does the monster run over a little girl while driving home from the bars instead of throwing her into the river?

When do the angry peasants finally pick up shovels or pitch forks and torches? I can hardly wait for the part when they storm the source of their misery on Washington street.

Please, no sequels. We have suffered enough.

GH

Oh no, they don't keep those brains for transplant. The brains in the basement are the ones Slagle had sucked from the council members heads.

Spike


05:01:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Taxes & Attitude


Spike

Fred, on Tuesday morning's KCPS Big Show 1150 AM, accurately pointed out the City's attitude on services. Fred noted that West Burlington understood that their swimming pool may have a deficit, but it is a City service for their citizens; while the City of Burlington complains about the cost of our swimming pool.

It is the difference in attitude. Our Burlington City management believes that our taxes are to provide excellent pay and benefits, and provide services with what ever is left over. They are definitely greedy!

taxpayer

If you think good pay motivates people to perform to the best of their ability, all you have to do is watch Slagle in front of the mirror.

I wonder why Slagle's best golf/vacation/drinking buddy Ell voted against Slagle's pay raise. I suppose Lost Keys didn't think 3.5% was enough. Or, maybe Ell was mad that they didn't conceal the pay raise for 7 months.

I do know Thomas was right about Slagle being like a CEO. Slagle is CEO on the Ship of Fools.

Spike


04:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

And Then There Were 5


Spike,

I forgot that Hoschek stole one of the brains from city hall. A friend of mine said that he saw him wearing it backwards. Another friend said he saw him wearing it upside down.

Yet another friend saw it slip off Hoschek's head into the trough and he ate it!

You just never know who to believe.

CK

04:17:00 - SPIKE - No comments

City Hall Is The Worst


Hi Spike

It looks like Burlington's Finest Leaders have done it again. Because of their arrogance and intimidation tactics they have broken the law again.

I'm telling you these thugs are breaking the law every day. And they think they are getting away with it. But they will be caught in time. And like I said, it goes all the way to the county attorney's office.

Just like the drunken mayors tiff, I've even heard of the Judges giving harder sentences because of politics. People are starting to notice the thug tactics of this city.

I do believe city hall is the worst because it affects more people.

It just proves this city is run by thugs and bums.

DG

03:58:00 - SPIKE - No comments

27 June

Burlington City Council Report In


06:22:05 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle - City Wasteland Manager


Spike:

Well, the SRS (Society of Rubber Stampers) gave their loser friend Slagle the raise even though he had done nothing but show up at the office for the past year, when not golfing or vacationing.

We live in a lackluster, poorly managed, deadbeat city and they reward the guy responsible for much of it with a raise. This just goes to show how low our city council has sunk when it comes to good judgment and responsibility to the citizens.

Our county and city are dying and these idiots reward those responsible. Of course the voter is also responsible for electing these back boneless creeps that treat the taxpayer and those on fixed incomes as though they were a money tree.

Again, they pull the old adage "to other cities of comparable size" while they ignore all the other comparable entities such as: library fees, taxes, garbage, streets, sidewalks, infrastructure, dilapidated housing and jobs.

This is just sickening news for the taxpayer and any others misfortunate enough to still be living in this wasteland of a city.

FFS

With this kind of news, how can it get worse?

Oh wait, Thursday the railroad lawsuit final arguments are due. I can''t wait to puke on my shoes when we get to see that spellbinding document outlining Power's retirement fund.

Spike


06:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Brains Found In City Hall Basement - Please Claim


Former Owners Have No Further Use



06:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

26 June

Sumo Wrestling - Heland vs. Slagle


Spike

We are always looking for creative fund raisers. How about a Sumo wrestling match for charity between Heland and Slagle?

Can you see them in those thongs? It may be a good match. I would bet on Heland.

How about a funny match? Say, Heland against Hoschek. Philip and Moto. I would buy a ticket.

We could have other local entry's on the card. Like the tough man contest.

Any other match ups? Maybe Thomas and Ell. Edwards would probably fall on his own.

What do you think? I think people would come for a good laugh.

XL

Heland and Slagle in Sumo thongs are more than I want to visualize.

How about Heland and Delaney - Winner takes on Edwards?

At least there would be money for the sidewalk program. You would have to see that the money didn't get funneled to Power to sue Japan since Sumo wrestling was really invented in Burlington and Japan has been infringing all these years.

Spike


05:14:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Fall Ticket


Spike,

I would love to see Ed Blow on the Fall ticket running against Mr. Helium as an Independent.

To bad we don't have a common sense party people could run on - not many of the current politicians would qualify for that category.

DK

That would make far too much sense and the newspaper would never say anything favorable for any idea that makes too much sense since they thrive on stirring their little pot of crap to sell the Oldest News On Paper.

Do you realize how much gaseous Heland emissions would have to be emitted if Heland had any candidate run against him?

I think Fred and 7 on the KCPS Big Show 1150 AM would have to expand Big Show hours from 6 am to noon to hear all that Heland would have to tell us.

Spike


04:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

New License Plates Ready


The new license plates are ready now and available with a stylish license plate frame. The new plates are shown on Spike's ride.



04:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

75 Miles & A World Apart


Iowa City Strikes Gold

Spike,

Mental agility rather than physical strength and dexterity is driving the new economy. Comparing Burlington to Iowa City is a good indicator of the changes that have taken place in the last 50 years. Iowa City has grown and prospered. Burlington has shrunk and grown poor.

While Burlington and Iowa City are noted sanctuaries for Marxist loonies, the Iowa City variety is at least educated and usually sober. Their anti-capitalist antics are largely ignored elsewhere in Johnson County.

The real sucess story is Coralville and North Liberty where educated ambition and inovation is less restricted by discredited political dogma. Drive north on IA 965 (old US 218) and note the growth. You will see no huge new auto assembly plants nor steel mills.

You will start ups all over the place. These are often service firms that get a high dollar for their expertise and employ but a few. A bio tech firm is involved in what may be the future of manufacturing. The wealth attracted from elsewhere circulates through new, nearby retailers.

There is model of change not all that far away.

GH

You mean there really is an Oz?

Spike


04:32:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Detriments Of A One Party County


Spike:

When you have one party in power exclusively, it is not a good thing, and what its led to in Des Moines County is wholesale abuse and mismanagement of the local government and the school system. This in turn created the current excessive taxes, fees, administrators salaries, the library fiasco, ridiculous garbage service, drunken mayor and on and on.

As an example, take a look at New Orleans, a truly Democratic city. The people of New Orleans have never benefited from the Democratic party. They have more or less been in servitude and cuddled only to produce the votes required to keep the Democrats in power.

The great society of President Johnson has done nothing to reduce the poverty of minorities in this country. In the 60's and 70's, minority families had a father figure in their lives. Today only 30% have father figures. The Democratic party has ruined a once great American city and created an entitlement society producing nothing but misery for itself.

With Des Moines County being fully Democratic we all come out losers because there are no checks and balances in government. In other words; toeing the party line rules rather than good fiscal judgment.

Until something other than Democrats are in power Burlington will continue to be a loser city with a mess of poverty coupled with low wages and an inept city government.

Des Moines County and Burlington need a diverse government and until this happens we're all going to be on the lower end of the food chain across the entire spectrum of life.

FFS



03:25:00 - SPIKE - No comments

25 June

Diewold's Phony Endorsement


Spike

I thought Ben Diewold was grandstanding to look good in front of the Party and the media. He said he was taught that the one with the most votes is the winner and therefore, he was asking everybody in the party to support Heland.

Nothing wrong with that if it is sincere. We all know if Blow had the most votes that Diewold would not have stood up and asked everybody to support Blow. That is why it was phony.

voter

Diewold had a snowball's chance in hell of winning even though all of the candidates should have had an equal chance of winning since Iowa Code say the popular vote is not supposed to play any role or consideration at the convention. But like most things Edwards, Courtney and Anderson dream up; rules don't apply to them.

Street talk say that Heland will set up Diewold to run against Beck in 2 years. Imagine that.

Three Hoscheks in office. That is very disturbing.

Unless Blow runs as an independent or as a Republican. The citizens understand performance. Heland doesn't offer any. Blow can run on his accomplishments over the last 3 years and smack 'em silly.

By election time the results of the railroad lawsuit will be known and the taxpayers aren't going to be happy with Edwards and Courtney's leadership into the costs of the lawsuit.

It is far from over.

Spike


12:05:59 - SPIKE - No comments

24 June

Magazine Scam Artists In Town


Spike,

Just writing to warn your readers about a couple roaming the streets trying to sell magazines. I was approached at my home yesterday by a college aged guy and girl trying to sell magazines for http://www.dssinconline.com/. Not sure if they are legit or not. They are very pushy. He claims to be from NY and her from Des Moines.

They won't take no for an answer and say they need the sales to win a trip to Cancun. They also claim that the company they work for supports youth programs.

After telling them no, he asked me if I said no since his skin color isn't white. Then he accused me of not supporting youth, and I told him that I support local youth programs, to which he responded, "what about united we stand" Whatever that was supposed to mean.

Just thought I would give everyone a heads up. Beware!

anonymous


05:53:38 - SPIKE - No comments

23 June

Diewold And Heland Swapping Spit?


Spike,

I heard Diewold and Heland on KCPS Thurs. morning swapping spit. It was totally disgusting. Fred even said he didn't like politicians crying. I wanted to pull over to the side of the road and barf.

These are grown men and they were acting like 2 teenagers on their second date at the drive in.

TH

Swapping spit? The mean police will get after you!

I did hear some of it. It was pathetic. Heland slobbering all over Diewold and Diewold even withdrew from Heland's mindless wanderings about it's "the best thing that ever happened to him."

I thought I heard Fred and 7 gagging like my dog Snot "yakking up a bone."

Spike


13:31:02 - SPIKE - No comments

Heland - Money Where His Mouth Is?


Hello Spike,

I am very disappointed to see that that Heland won the board position. What does he know about Des Moines County problems and what rural citizens have to say?

He is in it for the paycheck and that's it.

I hope you read this Heland In fact, here is a challenge to you. Donate your Supervisor's wages to local non-profit agencies and put your money where your mouth is.

Well how about it?

CT

I think it is all about the money. The college board doesn't pay anything. The insurance business can't be that good with Slagle, Edwards and Power running everybody out of town. Looks like German POW's marching East out of Stalingrad.

Spike


04:41:12 - SPIKE - No comments

Classic Assassination of Change


Spike -

What was done to Blow is classic of the litmus test the local political thugs impose on natives. Seeing what they do to their own who would bring positive change is another manifestation of their fear and loathing of anybody who may do likewise. Blow's body twisting in the wind is simply another warning sign to any outsider who would bring change and progress to stay out of Des Moines County.

Who in their right mind from the outside wants to deal with their bull shit? There are plenty of friendly places elsewhere to go.

As a result, the decay and decadence is accelerating.

DS

Nobody wants to deal with it. That's the problem. If the voters got off their ass and had a recall election for Edwards, it would be a good start.

When Slagle and Power are fired, Ell might be happy to leave before he is shown the door at election time.

You can't clean the barn if you don't collect Hinkle and Tapp.

Then, this city might have chance. No, I didn't forget Hoschek. His departure from office will be different.

Spike


04:32:00 - SPIKE - No comments

We Are In Trouble


Spike,

We are in trouble.

Did you notice Heland and Slagle have the same waist line?

RF

Maybe so, but Slagle has that drunk puppet on his knee.

Spike



04:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Mouth Over Matter


Spike,

I see the Politburo of Des Moines County's one party political system has saddled the suffering masses with another ass.

Jeff Heland - Mouth agap about nothing.

CK


04:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Is it a Secret Meeting When You Already Know the Outcome?


Spike,

As the official mouth piece for the local powers behind the throne, Iowa's Oldest News on Paper already knows what the Board of Supervisors have been told to do.

If you know in advance the meeting will be a yawner, or concerns something you want the masses to remain in the dark about, why bother covering the event. It costs money to have Jimmy Olson fire up is single-seat Nash and stick a flash bulb in his camera.

If the Board meeting concerned something the brave defenders of the decadent status quo wanted us to know, Jimmy would have been there.

GH

That's why the advertiser bitched about the supervisors not printing an agenda for their work sessions on Thursday. Delaney can't get his crew to get outside of the building to do their job. Why else is that repeat key used so much?

Spike


04:15:55 - SPIKE - No comments

Politics & Gravel Roads


Spike

I congratulate Jeff Heland because he did have the most votes. We should be somewhat concerned though, when Heland or any of the local politicians make their comments about doing it for the Democratic Party.

The local Democratic Party is divided because it is run by a few far left union people. Heland fits the category.

The Democratic Party should be about representing all of the citizens in Des Moines County. The best and brightest are not running because it is difficult to beat the big D machine here in Des Moines County.

The Hawkeye doesn't help much. This party continues to put people in office like Edwards just because he is union and a Democrat. Our children will pay the price.

Edwards is a perfect example of who should not be representing us as our elected leader. Yet, his behavior has been supported by The Hawkeye and strongly supported by Slagle and the staff. Has he helped the Burlington image? Looks like Jeff will get that Cadillac out on the dusty roads.

citizen

Heland's Cadillac won't be seeing any gravel roads trying to represent all of the citizens of Des Moines County. Instead. Heland can stand in his pajamas and tell us all about it on the KCPS Big Show 1150 AM as he has so many boring times before. It's like hitting snooze and drifting back to sleep.

Spike


04:12:58 - SPIKE - No comments

Honest Medicine, or Uncle Sam, Make my Day?


Spike,

I see the Democrat's platform has a plank about health screening of those who lived near the Ordinance Plant during its pre EPA days. Is there a legitimate concern?

I have friends and family who have suffered ill effects and premature death as result of making weapons that won the cold war. There is no doubt that those in close contact of actual manufacture and storage of weapons suffered, but what radius was effected?

Are there statistics to indicate those lived nearby are showing ill effect above the illness rate in the general population within a 200 mile radius? What is nearby? Does this include all of Des Moines County as well as large parts of Lee and Henry Counties?

Individual stories of heart breaking illness happen everywhere every day. Unless there is a proven connection to what took place manufacturing weapons decades ago, a person is not entitled to compensation.

Keeping the voter incumbent upon a government check is a proven way to keep incumbents in office. The decisions made in ignorance and haste by elected leaders facing a clear and present danger decades ago had unforseen ill effects that justly call for compensation to those proven to have been injured.

This unfortunate situation must not be permitted to become an excuse for current incumbent elected officials to buy themselves job security with government checks for all.

JK

We'll get to work on finding the website for the details.

Spike


04:08:29 - SPIKE - No comments

Time To Fly - Shuttle Set To Launch July 1




STS121-S-002 (5 April 2006) -- These seven astronauts take a break from training to pose for the STS-121 crew portrait. From the left are astronauts Stephanie D. Wilson, Michael E. Fossum, both mission specialists; Steven W. Lindsey, commander; Piers J. Sellers, mission specialist; Mark E. Kelly, pilot; European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Reiter of Germany; and Lisa M. Nowak, both mission specialists. Image credit: NASA




One of Space Shuttle Discovery's two payload bay doors is being closed. Inside the payload bay can be seen the multi-purpose logistics module Leonardo. Photo credit: NASA/Jim Grossmann

At Launch Pad 39B, installation of ordnance in the orbiter and in the solid rocket boosters is complete. Flight crew systems workers installed spacewalking suits known as extravehicular maneuvering units in the crew cabin. Final checks are complete and the doors were closed in preparation for flight.




Daylight streams through the open doors of NASA's Vehicle Assembly Building as Space Shuttle Discovery begins its slow 4.2-mile journey via the crawlerway to Launch Pad 39B. The shuttle rests on a mobile launcher platform that sits atop a crawler-transporter. First motion was at 12:45 p.m. EDT. Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett




Discovery rolls closer to Launch Pad 39B. The shuttle rests on the mobile launcher platform, which is being carried by the crawler-transporter underneath. Photo credit: NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis




Amid the glow of lights from the fixed and rotating service structures, Space Shuttle Discovery rests on the hardstand of Launch Pad 39B at NASA's Kennedy Space Center after completing the 4.2-mile journey from the Vehicle Assembly Building. First motion out of the Vehicle Assembly Building was at 12:45 p.m. EDT. The rollout is an important step before launch of Discovery on mission STS-121 to the International Space Station. Discovery's launch is targeted for July 1 in a launch window that extends to July 19. During the 12-day mission, Discovery's crew will test new hardware and techniques to improve shuttle safety, as well as deliver supplies and make repairs to the station. Photo credit: NASA/Ken Thornsley

04:03:30 - SPIKE - No comments

22 June

Supervisors Hold Another Secret Meeting


Apparently, the Des Moines County Supervisors conducted another illegal secret meeting this morning.

The advertiser's star repeat reporter Quirk didn't show up for the weekly work session.

Obviously, it was just another secret meeting since Quirk wasn't there. It had to be. What else could it have been?

12:36:48 - SPIKE - No comments

Mike Edwards


Hey Spike,

Do you know the difference between al-Zarqawi and Mike Edwards?

Mike Edwards will get bombed again.

FN

And again, and again.

Spike

11:24:52 - SPIKE - No comments

Cracks in the Empire of the Arrogant Ignorant


Spike,

His intoxicated excellency should be worried.

The Burlington City Council voted against the Mayor. There is to be no rush to judgement on the worth of Slagle. Without he who imagined himself a King on the Council, a wise decision passed for the first time in a long time.

Where does his intoxicated excellency stand as co-chair of Des Moines County's single party political system on the subject of Blow at the Supervisor nominating convention? Does the Mayor and his co-conspirator Courtney want Blow to go? Do they want another Hoeschek on the Board of Supervisors that they may easily manipulate?

Blow on the ballot this fall would be another blow to the tyranny of the ignorant who have ruled for too long.

The sweetest victory of all would be for his intoxicated excellency to be forced to blow into the baggie of a highway patrol officer, forget the B. P. D., after a state visit to Gulfport.

GH

Ahhh, yes. Nothing like the sweet smell of fermented mayor in the sultry morning drunk tank.

Our fermented mayor was removed as 2nd in command of the local Democrats as was Courtney. I guess their public visibility was getting a little too public.

They didn't get a clone of Hoschek but we will be told time and again what we did get. What Heland will accomplish is another subject.

Spike


04:29:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Library, Schools and Taxes


Spike:

I think we can safely assume that the library and the school system have ripped off the Burlington taxpayers for years because the city council believes all the BS these people excrete, is this a lack of backbone, brains or what?

Burlington voters are basically ignorant because they vote party rather than what's good for the community and thus we end up with extremely poor decisions, which end up as higher than normal taxes and poor management of the city. Look around it's all around us, voters. How long will this voter ignorance predominate?

Until we have some checks and balances our city is on the verge of massive destruction of our way of life through rubber stamping all raises and other decision without question by the council and boards. There's excessive amounts of double dipping going on in Burlington and it needs to stop now.

As an example what other city in Iowa allows only has one trash can of trash per week without an additional fee? What city in Iowa pays a library fee of over $44.00 per man, woman and child? What city pays it's school super in excess of $130,000 and an assistant super over $100,00 per year.

What is wrong with the dead beat school board? What city in Iowa builds new school after new school and gives away the old schools for little or nothing? These are schools the taxpayer paid million of dollars to maintain? What city can't afford to help out the taxpayer with sidewalk repair but can afford unwarranted pay increases for its dead beat management team?

When one looks at the chamber of commerce, school board, library trustees and the rest of the "in-crowd" it adds up to a city of losers that's slowly killing off the taxpayers livelihood. Just how much conflict of interest is allowed in this dump of a town?

Until the entire the city council, board of supervisors, boards of trustees, city management team and other board are gone we'll continue to live in a dead beat worthless,
non-progressive town.

I'm sorry to be so negative but its just gone on to long in this tin horn town. It's time to make changes before it's too late. We've got to get this old money and shuffling in and out of personnel stopped and get new blood in positions of power in order to save our city.

Can Falcon and Spike come out of the shadows without revealing their cover and lead a new generation of city officials into cleaning up Burlington and West Burlington? It takes someone with backbone to start the movement and both of these gentlemen have proven their resolve. What say guys?

FFS

After we clean house of the thugs, bums and monkeys maybe people will be more inclined to want to run for public office.

However, I still don't expect much new blood because of the advertiser. The Hawk Eye is the biggest detriment to Southeast Iowa. They are not a recognized source of accurate news and they are not community minded.

So the rewards shrink to zero value.

Spike


04:05:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Exhorbitant Library Operating Expenses


Burlington Library Operating Costs 3 X's Higher Than Ottumwa

Spike

Falcon has the operating cost of the Ottumwa library. WOW! The Hawkeye should print that one. And no money for sidewalks for the Burlington citizens.

AA

What can I say. Temple builders seldom acknowledge costs or the bodies the temple's are built on.

Spike


03:58:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Who Said Sue?


Hi Spike -

I was wondering what if we lose the RR Lawsuit and we have to pay the RR lawyer bills. And let’s say it cost $1.5 mil. Now who gave permission to file the suit?

Was this legal to file the suit? And do they have permission to spend that much money without a vote from the public?

If not, then is this a felony or just a misdemeanor charge? And who is legally responsible for this mess?

Just a few questions that I have been thinking about. I sure hope we win the suit or it sounds like heads will roll.

Thanks Spike

KL

It depends on whom you listen to. When the city council was deflecting the closed session meeting where they voted to sue the railroad, I believe they first said Bruce Slagle could authorize the suit.

Then SL King said Scott Power could authorize the lawsuit.

Then they said the Easter Bunny did it.

I would guess legally, the lawsuit was never properly authorized since the council decided, and then voted in closed session to sue the railroad.

The proper way to do it is decide to sue in closed session and then go into open session to publicly vote to authorize the lawsuit.

I am pretty sure I am right since the State Ombudsman found the city council held an illegal closed session meeting over the whole deal.

If it is important the issue will surface in any appeal the railroad file should the railroad lose the first round.

The real importance of your questions relate to how the city could recover their legal fees from Scott Power for improperly filing what is probably an illegal lawsuit.

Spike

03:17:00 - SPIKE - No comments

21 June

Blow Loses Supervisor Election


The Democrats unleashed a force to be reckoned with tonight when they decided to vote "I don't know why I'm running" Jeff Heland into office.

Rumors have been circulating for days about the convention and how the Des Moines County Democrats were going to follow mindlessly like Lemmings after Edwards, Courtney, Anderson, Hoschek and the Hawkeye-Iowa's Oldest News In Print.

Too bad the citizens will have to endure Heland who has done nothing but run his mouth for years after someone that has done more in this county in the last 3 1/2 years than all the rest of them have over the last 12 years including our drunk mayor. And Edwards will still be the drunk puppet on Slagle's knee.

I predict orange just might be the perfect fall color.

So the good ol' boys won a skirmish but forgot the battle.

Spike

20:05:18 - SPIKE - No comments

Newspaper Is Worse


Spike,

You and you readers are right. The newspaper has changed for the worse.

I left Burlington over 20 years. The newspaper was different then. And it looks like it isn't going to change.

Burlington was a good city. It's too bad that it has gone so far down hill.

Gone

PS I also think you might be right about the mayor. It sure reeks of payback for his booze snooze. My sister watches the council meeting on TV and she emailed me about Edwards blowing a gasket Monday night.

03:42:00 - SPIKE - No comments

City & Education Perspective


Spike,

The city deserves to get it between the eyes. How long is it going to be before Burlington residents decide to get real and vote, or do they actually enjoy paying high taxes?

I also agree that Book and Evans also make way too much money. Here is an idea. Why doesn't Book and Evans agree to a pay cut and maybe give the teachers helpers a pay raise? Naw, they wouldn't do that, they are all for themselves.

They really don't care about education; just that nice, sweet, juicy, fat paycheck.

TC

One of our readers summed this up in a private email.

"Have you ever seen a teachers strike over anything but teachers' salaries/benefits? Do you ever see the teachers strike over what the students need to get a better education?" And teachers helpers are right in that mix.

As for the city, I don't see a change.

Spike


03:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

20 June

Edwards Slaps Newspaper


One day after the advertiser's 2nd Sniveler Dale Alison proclaimed they only report the fact, Quirk missed the end of the Edwards' comment slapping the paper during Monday's council meeting.

Edwards' quote today in the advertiser's last sentence in the article said, " I guess I just would like a little more evenhandedness," he said.

What Edwards actually said and should have read: "I guess I just would like a little more evenhandedness from The Hawk Eye."

Edwards also said, "..everytime the city does anything, we get it right between the eyes."

What a ridiculous remark. Edwards, Slagle, Ell, Power and King all tell preposterous lie about the railroad lawsuit and the advertiser never confronts the lying.

That would be more like "getting it between the eyes" from the advertiser. Or, look at the way the advertiser goes after the supervisors for everything.

Unless Edwards' remarks were really directed at BurlingtonDerailed.com.

Spike


11:09:37 - SPIKE - No comments

Challenge to Edwards/Ell's Financial Goofs Warranted


Spike

We watched the council meeting. Congratulations to Tim Scott for standing up for what was right. Councilmen Thomas and Campbell did right by supporting Scott.

It was obvious by watching that councilmen Ell and Edwards were agitated and not happy. Edwards looked like he needed a drink. Ell attempted to derail Scott's efforts. Tim explained himself very well. Edwards and Ell were trying to ram it through. That is just wrong.

Worden did a smart thing by refinancing the bonds. They will save. Why didn't they do it a couple months ago? Rates were even better.

Are they going to use the savings for salary increases or services? It sure is interesting that these savings appear at this exact time of the manager and staff pay raises.

I agree that the school superintendent is overpaid, too. Just a few years ago the top school guy earned less than our current asst. superintendent. Now they have two at over $100,000.

taxpayer

Edwards was so pissed, all red faced, that he used the springs in his chair to catapult himself straight to the bar stool. He was out of the picture before the camera man had cut to the public service messages and music. The springs in Ell's chair weren't so strong.

I do disagree with Thomas in his thinking that Slagle is on the same level as the CEO of a company. Slagle would have been fired years ago for non-performance. Thomas was more correct in his assessment that Slagle needed to worry about the garbage pick-up.

I don't think the school board has gotten the message. We can't afford any more. Book and his assistant are overpaid.

I don't care what they pay anybody somewhere else. If you think you have the skills, further your career. Leave. Go. Get out!

That includes city managers or school superintendents.

Spike


10:50:43 - SPIKE - No comments

They Are Not Worthy


Spike,

After reading the advertiser's 2nd in command whiner's discourse on media access to last week's tragedy at the IAAP, it appears the IAAP has their act together.

The newspaper is the last place any information should be handed out.

And the paragraphs about fact and accuracy made me laugh. Iowa's Oldest News In Print is a far cry from accurate. They are not worthy to report the facts.

When I want the facts without the spin, I read BurlingtonDerailed.com.

Left Burlington For The Real World Long Ago

Our readers come from far and wide to relive how it used to be before they found the world. No one ever says they miss the antics of Iowa's Oldest News In Print.

Spike


03:31:00 - SPIKE - No comments

19 June

Edwards Shut Down On Slagle Pay Increase


Pay Raise Tabled For Discussion

Scott, Campbell and Thomas earned their wages tonight by stopping the big old Slagle, Ell and Edwards rubber stamp from dropping on Slagle's pay increase.

Good for them.

Edwards was noticeably pissed that it didn't go his way. Edwards did a little song and dance from his bully pulpit and was swiftly voted off the stage. His face was still flushed when he jumped from his chair and bolted from the room.

We don't like bullies.

20:02:19 - SPIKE - No comments

Hinkle's Library Thoughts


Copy of email to Falcon at WestBurlingtonCity.com -

Falcon,

According to the Des Moines County News, Southeast Iowa's most accurate newspaper, West Burlington Councilman Raleigh stated Chamber President Dennis Hinkle said if he knew how much grief the Vision Iowa funding for the new library was going to create, he wouldn't have applied for the money.

Isn't that a ringing endorsement.

Spike

13:26:55 - SPIKE - No comments

Angelou Study Due Next Week


No Kum By Ya

The Angelou Economics study is due next week. Sunday, the advertiser had a preview of the thought processes that we might expect to hear in their final report.

Angelou seems like the real deal. Their pedigree is impressive. They have done something other than lunch.

If you Google and read about Angelou’s various projects you will see a few things I see lacking that will impact how well the results of this study can be implemented.

Other cities wanted to change, realized they needed to change, had qualified leaders and the newspaper played a supporting role in effecting those changes.

I have no clue how these detriments can be overcome in Southeast Iowa. It is valiant to believe that if everyone all works together that things can change in Southeast Iowa. But that isn't enough.

These obstacles are not insurmountable. But who will lead, who has the guts to admit there must be wholesale changes and what makes us think the advertiser will ever assume the role they could have in this rebuilding?

I believe that’s why the common people see no end to this ludicrous story. It’s not the people. It’s the lack of leadership and common people with common sense realize it.

That’s why I can’t sing Kum By Ya.

05:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Heland Doesn’t Know Why He Is Running


A week before the primary election, Supervisor candidate Heland told Fred and 7 on the KCPS Big Show 1150 AM that he didn’t know why he was running.

Fred asked Heland why he was running since Fred believed it was a 2 horse race between Blow and Diewold. Heland said he didn’t know why he was running.

Heland went on to say that he felt the job was a part-time job. I suppose that is more like Hoschek’s approach to his duties.

Fred asked Heland to differentiate himself from Blow and Diewold. Heland couldn’t do that either.

In an earlier radio interview, Heland didn’t know the Supervisor’s term was 4 years.

Makes me wonder why did Heland run? He doesn’t exhibit any motivation to know anything. is it just the money?

We have enough people in Burlington doing nothing more than lunch. We don’t need another one in the Court House.
04:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Pure and Ethical 2


Spike,

I just read Pure and Ethical. Anybody that can write their own performance review and use a sentence like that needs to see the city shrink.

There are far more serious problems than job performance. I think it is a compensation issue.

HG

Do you mean financial compensation? Or what?

Spike


04:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Pure and Ethical 3


Spike:

A hooker, a lawyer and Delaney meet in a bar. They strike up a conversation over qualifications. A drunk is sitting on the bar stool and overhears their conversation.

Hooker: “I want you to know I am pure.”

Lawyer: “I want you to know I am ethical.”

Drunk: “Well, I‘m the Mayor, everybody gets a raise.”

Delaney: "Good, can I watch?"

KL

You want a job?

Spike


04:05:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Just Say No - Then Get Out!


Spike,

If the city council can’t make up their mind on what to do with Slagle I’ll tell them, just say no! I didn’t get any raise this year.

How can this city keep cutting services and pay the city manager more money? Tim Scott told us the budget was a bare bones budget.

It looks like Tim’s bare bones have more meat on them than my bare bones.

RG

It starts with a drunk for a mayor that is not a leader but a thug. Thugs think they can bully everyone into submission.

Thugs are not bright and seldom have original thoughts. They are usually better at being told what to do.

A drunk that gets a ride home instead of a trip to prison repay that act with an absurd pay raise. That is as far as a thug can think.

And any city employee that can’t live without a raise on $100,000 a year plus expenses in Burlington, Iowa needs a real dose of reality.

Fire this bum and put us out of our misery.

Spike


04:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Library Threats Answered


Another Alternative

Spike

The Hawkeye had a good article in Sunday's paper about the library boards threats and demands for our neighbors. WB Mayor Trousil made some valid points.

I'm not sure our city council should allow our library board to be so aggressive. Their threatening approach is damaging to our relationships with these smaller towns.

Let's not forget that the Middletown and Danville citizens patronize the Burlington businesses.

On the other hand, they use our streets too, so we better tax them for driving on our streets. I even saw a WB family in Crapo park. Tax'em.

resident

I'm glad to see Trousil take a stand. I would explore every alternative to save the residents money for library use.

West Burlington could designate the Southeast Community College as their community library. Then all of the West Burlington citizens could just go get a reciprocal library card like you are able to do at most public libraries throughout the State of Iowa. Middletown and Danville could do the same. Southeast Community College will offer most library patrons a card for their library if you present a current card from another Iowa library.

In fact, since Danville already has a library, they might be able to offer their residents a library card now. With that card, under some Iowa library agreements, Burlington would have to reciprocate. Whatever happens, for the library board to do something after the fact is probably discriminatory.

One other thought. The library probably receives federal funding. If it does, there are usually significant strings attached. The board is real good at stretching the truth in the past. I don't expect much more now.

If the Burlington Library Board won't provide the West Burlington a list of alleged 1400 West Burlington users, I wouldn't do anything. That smells like Power's lump sum legal bills. "Believe me, I'm telling you, the lawsuit is about jobs."

The Burlington City Council is completely ineffective when its comes to controlling Slagle and Power, how in the world would they ever have the guts to control the Temple Builders?

If Slagle could figure out how to charge the users for Burlington parks, believe me, it would happen in the blink of an eye. If he could build a toll road out Main Street to Crapo Park, he would.

The only way to cover up incompetence is more money.

Spike


03:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

16 June

Pure Road Apples


Spike,

Quirk's article thursday morning was a real blazing assessment of Slagle’s lack of job performance. It is just so typical of how Delaney lets the city slide on not doing their job.

The only thing “pure” from Slagle, Edwards and Ell is the same stuff that comes out of the southbound end of my northbound horse. They are the most pathetic group of people to occupy city hall in the last 40 years.

TR

I want to know what the city has on Delaney? Ad revenue?

Spike


12:38:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Silence The Opposition


Spike

Here is a Quote for City Hall, the council and Delaney! If they understand it. This is the direction we are headed.

"Once the government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down."

Harry Truman

TK

You've seen the efforts these thugs, bums, monkeys and criminals have taken in the last year to silence BurlingtonDerailed.com. Some of their efforts have been pretty drastic, even for them.

If we aren't a threat to them, why have they expended all of this effort? What do we know?

If we don't speak the truth, why haven't they sued us?

Is there more to the story they would have to answer for in depositions they don't want the public to know? Is the truth more serious than what we report?

We know there is a lot more to this story. And that is the reason we will keep hammering and bide our time.

And we're coming and it isn't going to be pretty. I'd think orange would be a good color for fall.

Spike


12:37:02 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle's Lack Of Performance


Spike

I don't quite understand the method used to evaluate Slagle's performance. Did I read it correctly?

Did Slagle write his own review questions? Did he claim that he is well respected in the community? I'm not sure about that.

Isn't he the one that made some unprofessional remarks at a noon lunch meeting in front of young women?

Isn't he the one that held the sign up that read "Vote For Anyone but Tim Scott" when Scott attempted to stop the abuse of the Friday days off called the flex plan?

The citizens had trouble doing business and Scott did it for the citizens and the businesses attempting to do business at City hall. Slagle and the staff thought it was more important to get three day weekends.

That is poor management and he got caught.

Tim Scott got criticized by the staff for doing what he was elected to do. The other council members turned their heads. It is one big clique of abusiveness of tax dollars and what we can do for them inside city hall. They are a selfish bunch.

They all watch each others back because they cheat the system. Come and go when they want. The citizens in this community come second and that will not change with this manager or council.

citizen

12:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Council Reflects City's Decline


Where Are The Young People

As Burlington continues to shrink, the pool of those willing to serve in public office does also. When you look at the rewards versus the abuse, few flock to the public arena to serve in elective office.

When you examine Burlington's decline, it is not across the board. Those who leave are those the city most needs to move forward. It is the young and those with four years of college, or more, who are the first to leave. It has been going on for decades.

Twenty-five years ago, a visiting friend toured Burlington and after a few days asked, "Where are all the young people?" I told him they left for something better than barely above minimum wage opportunities. Those who left two and three decades ago are the ones with experience not yet dimmed by age who should now be running Burlington.

If you lack abilities to advance much beyond convenience store clerk, Burlington is no different than elsewhere. If you are a drunk who can abuse a union contract to maintain your job, why go elsewhere? The dregs remain and they are running the City of Burlington.

The last time I looked around Burlington, my friends question remains valid. Where are the young people? As long as this question is valid, things are only going to get worse.

GH

City Hall is filled with amateurs and misfits. Hell of a combination.

Spike


04:44:00 - SPIKE - No comments

City Speaks With Forked Tongue


Spike,

The $40,000 Slagle gave the Capitol Theater Group to take the theater and the law offices next door off the tax rolls would have paid for pay raises for many years to come.

Seems like the city fathers and DPI speak with forked tongues such as not wanting the empty Hy Vee store to be purchased by the DM County Supers.

Haven't heard anything more about the DPI request for the city to forgive the $35,000 loan so they could purchase the Trolley Bus.

The city has just spent gobs of money to paint the street lines so out of towner's will know which side of the street to drive on when coming to Steam Boat Days - or was it to spruce the city up for the railroad when they take over the city because of nonpayment of the railroads legal fees?

i 2 Pay Tax

04:27:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Too Many Cronies


Hi Spike

I think the main problem with city gov't in Burlington is too much conflict of interest in all dept's. including the chamber of commerce, the county supervisors, all kinds of board members etc.

The problem is no one abstains from being involved if there is a conflict. And no one pushes it to the law. In other words, too many cronies.

But, like you said people have to vote because the bad guys are going to win every time. They are very organized and most people have lives to manage and don't have time to vote and have to live with the results.

But it is getting so bad it's a question of whether you're better off leaving town or not. If the bad guys get an inch they will take a mile, that's already a fact.

So please VOTE. Give the good guys a chance to win to make a better city for everyone.

THANKS SPIKE

PO
02:28:00 - SPIKE - No comments

15 June

City Loses Lawsuit Motion


The City lost its motion for oral arguments over the recent filings.

After reading the railroad's proposed order in the case, I guess the Judge has had enough lip service from the City.

10:55:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle's Report Card


Spike,

You did a good job on the report card for SL King. How about one for Slagle?

ST

Report Card for Bruce Slagle -

Trustworthiness F-
Competency D-
Ability To Deceive A
Fiscal Irresponsibility A+
Ability To Hide Power's Legal Fees A+
Willing To Listen F+
Willing To Accept Criticism A+
Willing to Change F-
Respect By Community F
Respect From Fellow Vacationers C
Ability To Buffalo Council Members A
Willing To Accept Unwarranted Pay Raise A
Golf Ability D
Propensity To Cheat At Golf B
Inability To Name One Accomplishment A
Blame Others For Being Spike A+

Overall Achievement Level - 3rd Grade

10:28:38 - SPIKE - No comments

Pure and Ethical – How About Slagle A Proven Liar!


Pure and Ethical. That’s what Bruce Slagle said in writing his own job performance evaluation according to Quirk’s article in the advertiser this morning.

This confirms Slagle is a known liar.

Slagle told us the railroad lawsuit was about jobs on numerous occasions even when he knew it wasn’t. Those were lies #1-25.

Then Slagle testified in federal court that the lawsuit was about the money.

Finally, Slagle writes his own job evaluation describing himself as “pure and ethical” without taking into consideration Lies # 1-25.

That makes 26 lies.

If I were a city council member I would hang my head. You people have lost total touch with reality.

How in the world can you show your face in public?

How can you in good conscience fill out a form conceived by a known drunk?

How can you allow the city manager to summarize his own job performance?

How can you allow Slagle to hide behind the “personnel issues” and then let him talk about the content of his job evaluation to the newspaper? Seems to me Slagle broke the law when he divulged information of his own job performance.

You endorsed multiple lawsuits against city firemen for allegedly accessing confidential data. Slagle leaks confidential personnel information and you give him a raise.

What the hell is the matter with you? What don’t you understand? Slagle is the problem, not the solution. Fire his ass along with Power.

When the next city council does a Google search for Bruce Slagle, they will find BurlingtonDerailed.com.

All the self-flagellation performance reviews in the world won’t help Slagle then.

Unfortunately, nothing will help us now.

09:42:38 - SPIKE - No comments

Voting


Spike:

Here in Burlington many people don't vote because they have no interest in anything but partying, talking on cell phones, not working and getting their welfare, food and health allotments each month off the backs of those that do work for a living.

We have a whole generation of dead heads living in this town and the farthest thing from their minds is voting and working. Their none productive life styles have also ruined the school system because their kids have the same lazy live off the system outlook.

I also feel many responsible citizens don't vote because the candidates don't offer any alternatives since their all democrats rotating in and out. This town is ruining itself because only one party runs in any of the elections. One party one vote is just asinine and a loser proposition.

The city council and board of supervisors are good examples of poor government. Basically with the whole county is run by democrats a fact that produces fodder for nothing to change. We the taxpayers have no checks and balances in local government, which accounts for many of the failures and the continuous downward slide of Burlington.

We basically live in a loser town and nothing will change until more than one party runs and we get some diversification on the council, as well as in county positions.

FFS

09:03:18 - SPIKE - No comments

Open Up Debate


Spike,

The form of municipal government that the citizens voted in requires that the City hire a Manager. LR wants the Council to assume the daily, direct responsibility of supervising City staff. While this may or may not be a good idea, it is not a legal idea under the present form of government in Burlington, IA. We are required to hire a Manager. It is that simple.

Having led the original committee that successfully influenced the voters to change from the Commission form to the present Council-Manager form, I know what a difficult undertaking it is to change the form.

But if people can't or won't vote-in candidates committed to change, maybe the back-door approach of a change in form of government could go a long way in leading our community down the right path.

I'd rather see some civil discussion of that topic on your pages then to be bombarded by all the whining about pay rates and lousy golf games. (Being a lousy golfer enough punishment for anyone. I know.) I would be happy to participate, in person or in the blogosphere, in a discussion and analysis of the various forms of government recognized by the State of Iowa as appropriate for cities to adopt.

Any takers?

John Sandell
Former Council Member and Mayor

I think the Council-Manager form of government is good. But we have a chronic example of Power gone mad and a manager that can't manage the city into the future.

If our emails are any indication of how people feel, Slagle better warm up his resume. We have some we can't edit to PG-13 about Slagle.

If our readers have comments on the Council-Manager form of government and how a change could affect the operation, here's the webspace.

Spike

04:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

What Is Cost of Living?


Spike

It was announced today that our US Senate and House members voted themselves a raise again. That is foolish with the deficit ballooning. They got a cost of living raise at 2%.

It was stated that we had a 2% cost of living increase. How come Burlington is giving a 3.5% cost of living to their management. Maybe at the rate we are going, Burlington's cost of living is higher than the rest of the country.

Does our City Council ever do their own research or just take what the staff gives them as the gospel? This council better wake up soon.

ready2move

04:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

City Manager's Raise


Spike

Good website for the citizens here in Burlington that wish to give opinions. Most of what I have read about the City manager pay raise is right on.

We didn't have the money for services for the citizens, but we have found some money for Slagle, and his staff will be next in line. They should wait to see if we will lose this lawsuit. It has already cost over $200,000.of citizens hard earned money.

We should wait to see if the water park will be able to make the payments on the loan. If not, the citizens will get stuck with that bill. We probably will never hear the truth from City Hall anyway.

That is the way they operate and the Hawkeye should not allow that. Bill Mertens would roll over in his grave if he knew how soft Delaney was on City Hall. Sorry Steve, just the truth.

The City manager has Mike Edwards and Bill Ell controlled. Everybody in town can see that.

Thomas, Scott and Campbell have a decision to make. Two of Slagle's puppets are not enough. Those three could make a change, but they would have to stick together and have the guts. I'm not sure they do. They haven't showed anything yet.

Private sector jobs here in Burlington do not receive raises near what the government jobs are handing out every year. It is ridiculous. Burlington is not a large town. If they want more money every year, that is fine, let them take a job elsewhere.

taxpayer

03:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

You Gotta Vote To Change City Hall


Spike,

The citizens of Burlington have to vote if they want change in the way this town is operated.

This town is a complete mess, who would ever want to move here? Taxes are eating away the paychecks of hardworking citizens, the ones that still have to pay for their own health insurance.

Taxes in Burlington will not level off until the people vote the bozos out that are giving big bottomed slackers a raise.

People of Burlington, you need to vote!!!!

CT

It's pretty bad when you can only find 3,000 people that voted in last Tuesday's election. I would like to know what percentage of the voters were under age 25.

In most foreign countries, even Iraq, they kick our ass on voting with percentages in the 80-90% of eligible voters go to the poles. And they don't use absentee ballots to fill the box.

It's pretty pathetic.

Spike


03:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

14 June

Survey? You’re Not Serious – Read BurlingtonDerailed.com


Spike,

You mean to tell me the drunk we have for a mayor needed a survey to check on Slagle’s job performance? What’s the matter with Edwards? If Slagle did a better job, Edwards would be in jail like everyone else in town.

News Flash! Maybe Edwards should read Burlington Derailed?

I know he has his nose up the Advertiser’s butt, but if he really wants to know how Slagle and his cronies are performing, let Spike tell him.

I read it for free and it doesn’t cost me 50˘ a day to read yesterday’s, or mostly last week’s news.

DG

Edwards has his minion at the library read BurlingtonDerailed.com to him.

If Slagle is such a good manager, why didn’t he add a construction clause in the contracts for the Fun City bonds that would have deferred the 1st payment until there was cash flow to make the payment?

Any rookie would have gotten that done. Without a penalty.

Spike

04:22:00 - SPIKE - No comments

You People Should Be Ashamed


Spike,

Those city hall people should be ashamed of themselves. No money for sidewalks, a lawsuit we can’t win and now they give the city manager a pay raise?

What the hell don’t they understand? i still don't have good water pressure even after the great Horace Mann, "we're out of water" fire debacle.

Provide adequate water pressure for me and then you can think about giving that jackass a raise.

Pissed


04:16:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Fun City Layoffs


Spike,

Falcon reports 30 people have been layed off at Fun City and lunch is no longer available.

What gives? You missed this one.

DD

Looks like I'll miss lunch, too.

I wonder how the city will make the next bond payment?

Spike



04:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Email Your Councilman


Spike,

Where can we go to get the email addresses of our council members? I, for one, would love to email every one of them to voice my opinion over Slagle's pay.

WR

Burlington City Council Contacts For Those That Will Do Something Other Than Label You A Trouble Maker Or Ask Where You Live

Mike Campbell Contact Info – no spaces
campbellm at burlingtoniowa.com

Tim Scott Contact Info – no spaces
Scotty291 at aol.com

Garry Thomas Contact Info – no spaces
gthomas at mchsi.com

For two councilmen that will label you a trouble-maker and ask where you live.
Bill Ell
ellb@burlingtoniowa.org

Edwards
edwardsm@burlingtoniowa.org
04:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

FIRE SLAGLE and WORDEN - Save The Money!


Hi Spike

I can not believe Edwards, Ell and Scott They will not have my vote again. And this latest deal to borrow $4 million to pay off debt, I believe that money is probably going in someone’s pocket. And the chamber of commerce is probably involved or another millionaire.

Slagle's performance should be the factor to decide his raises. He's not union. He does not get a raise just because.

Slagle got this city in such debt, how can you call him a manager of anything?

Now, if the Council wants to do the right thing then they should FIRE SLAGLE and WORDEN and save the tax payers about a quarter of a million dollars a year and run the city themselves; but they don't have the balls to do it.

Here's a plan, let the people tell the council how to run the city. Not Slagle or the Chamber or the library board. How about that for a plan?

As for a raise, I say not only no, but HELL NO!! Are you nuts?

THANKS SPIKE

LR
02:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Still Just Curious About Road Rage Incident


Spike,

I still am wondering what would have happened if it had been the car dealer's child that made the mistake while driving and she was treated in the same manner?

I think there would have been a conviction! It just proves that only people with money and a "name" matter in this town.

OP

Unless you're the mayor and need a ride home. Then you give the city manager a raise to keep your good name as a noted expert on alcoholic beverages untarnished.

Spike

02:35:00 - SPIKE - No comments

History Lesson



Overton, Richard C. Burlington Route, A History of the Burlington Lines. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1965.

Spike,

Richard C. Overton was well-respected student of Economics and scholar of History.

While the above was not on the New York Times best seller list, it ended up in libraries where ever the old CB&Q went, including Burlington. Overton's book is not a history of real estate deals between the City of Burlington and the predecessor railroad that built the shops. However, this book's bibliography is wealth of original source material some of which may contain information on those deals.

For all the money the City of Burlington spent on legal fees, I was hoping some gems may have been gleaned that would give insight on the attitudes and interpretations of the parties who signed the original 19th century contracts. The experts Power present on the history of the contracts were laughable.

I can understand the railroad not presenting a history essay. A subsequent contract in the 1980's is the rational conclusion of the issue. If, through some error in judgment, the City wins its case, you can bet the railroad will appeal. Should this happen, it will be interesting to see what the railroad unearths from the past.

If some young scholar has a freshman research paper to write, this is offered up as a subject. Much original source material may be too far away to economically access.

Unlike the City Attorney, a young scholar cannot bill the city for their efforts. None-the-less, the Newberry Library is not that far away in Chicago and other closer academic libraries may be useful to obtain copies and/or loans of material.

For those who think, "We ain't got no need of a lie-berry. We got us a new computer and the Internet," think again.

Libraries contain much information that is not and probably never will be, online. The City's attempted shake down of the railroad is a perfect example of information considered arcane and useless for years suddenly having real value.

Information has value and deserves to be preserved. Libraries do that task.

GH

The local library used to have a copy of this excellent work. That was before the many sales of library items to raise money for the Temple Of Excess.

Spike


02:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Witness Intimidation


Hi Spike

Did you see in the advertiser Wed June 7th 2006 about the cop who thought he was above the law and caused a case to be thrown out of court?

I'm telling you in my opinion the BPD is as crooked as the crooks themselves, and it goes all the way to the county attorney's office too.

Now don't get me wrong I want the filthy animals off of the street just as much as anybody does. But not by breaking the law or waving their guns or intimidating in any way, simply by the book.

By the way, I wonder if the officer in charge was reprimanded or not? Probably not, because they seem to sweep the bad stuff under the rug all the time like the drunk mayor or the cop they let go a while back. Hmm, I wonder where he works now?

Anyway I'm Proud of the advertiser for catching this and for the JUDGE for doing the right thing when it comes to the Constitution of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

Now as for the BPD, you are on everyone’s radar now, watch yourself. Just think if the cop would have killed the suspect or visa versa, Burlington does not need this. Get rid of the bad cops, they are just trouble.

THANKS SPIKE

Well, they got rid of one that had problems. Like any organization, it only takes a few to make you want to belong somewhere else.

Me, I like the rubber hose for confessions. I save the pistol whipping for the really bad guys.

Spike

02:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

13 June

It Is Payback!


Spike,

You're right. Slagle's pay raise is payback for a free ride home.

Mike Edwards is a known four time drunk. He paid Slagle for keeping him out of prison.

It's disgusting.

LG

12:03:42 - SPIKE - No comments

It Never Changes!


Spike

Here we go again. Give the City manager a large pay raise to keep in step with other Cities. That is getting old!

Didn't the City eliminate some services for the "CITIZENS" at budget time because they did not have the money? That is what Edwards said. City Hall finds the money for the expenses of wages and benefits that benefit "THEM." It never changes!

Ell is a huge disappointment. I thought he had more character and had the citizens in his best interest when he ran for office.

The whole council is responsible for it though. Take from the needy and give to the greedy!

I hope they are proud. No wonder nobody votes anymore.

citizen

Don't be too disappointed with Ell. He kept the lost school keys a secret from the taxpayers and council for 7 months. He golfs and vacations with Slagle.

He's cut out of the same mold.

Spike


12:00:38 - SPIKE - No comments

Payback Pay Raise


Million Dollar Budget Deficit = Job Security?

NO!!

Free Ride Home = Job Security


Spike,

I can’t believe the newspaper. Slagle is going to get a pay raise?

Why does he deserve a pay raise? Did everybody forget that a year ago Slagle handed us a million dollar budget deficit? After that, our drunk mayor said he gave Slagle a raise because he was a nice guy and was raising a family.

What’s the matter with the council? We can’t afford this. I guess I am most disappointed with Bill Ell. He isn’t getting my vote next time. Maybe Slagle had something to do with the school keys.

DK

Or maybe it was pay back for a free ride home. Our sources still maintain that Slagle called the shots to give Edwards a ride home from Burger King when he passed out drunk.

Spike


10:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Give Slagle A Uniform In Lieu Of A Raise


Spike,

Given the fact that fools and drunks have dominated Burlington's City Council of late, a vacuum has been created. Like nature, power abhors a vacuum. Into the void Mr. Slagle has inserted himself.

Roles have been reversed. Mr. Slagle does not serve the city via its representatives. Mr. Slagle helps the city's inept representatives find their way to the bathroom and in return, the city serves Slagle.

Mr. Slagle is compensated well in his role. If he does not like his level of compensation, let him go elsewhere. Given that elsewhere might mean serving, rather than ruling, a competent City Council, Mr. Slagle may stay.

The city could do more to enhance Mr. Slagle's role. A spiffy uniform with black leather riding boots and a black shirt and tie would be in order. A balcony could be installed on City Hall from which Mr. Slagle could strut about and issue his edicts to the city.

Burlington's Benito would then have a stage worthy of his role.

When it comes to performance, I would expect more of the same. Suing the railroad is no way to make the trains run on time.

GH

10:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

No Justice


Spike:

How could the city council say Slagle needs a raise to bring him up to par with other cities of comparable size when the same council (depends who's shuffling in or out) voted to build a monstrosity of a library that cost twice as much as cities of comparable size and/or larger? Why don't they compare this?

The taxpayer is again being snubbed by the worthless city council here in Burlington. Giving Slagle a raise is like letting the fox care for the chickens, what is wrong with these people? Who represents the taxpayer in this worthless town?

Slagle needing a raise is an insult to every man, women and child living in this tin-horn town. This city council needs to be fired and replaced by a group of people wanting to make a difference rather than one of kissing butt and rolling over playing dead when it comes to giving away taxpayer money. One would think Slagle has done something for Burlington rather than putting the whole town in harms way. We are represented by a gang of liars and misfits at 400 Washington Street.

This news about giving this bum a raise just makes me sick to my stomach.

FFS

10:35:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Police To Determine Vicious Dogs?


Spike,

I don’t like mean dogs or drug dealers. These drug dealers all try to have a meaner dog than the other drug dealer.

But I have to draw a line on our police department making the decision to take a person’s personal property from them without due process mean dog or not.

To enable our police force to take someone’s dog without going to court undermines the Constitution.

To have the police department makes these types of decisions when they can’t decide if Mayor Edwards is drunk, is just too much.

Mean dog, or not!!!

JK

Seems to me you can't avoid going to court. But I'm sure Scott Power will be glad to bill the city thousands of dollars to defend the city's right to amend the Constitution; that Thomas Jefferson, et.al. really didn't mean to say that.

Why not raise the penalties on keeping a vicious dog to a $10,000 fine and mandatory 12 months in jail?

After all, it's not the dog's fault.

Spike


10:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle Lousy Golfer


Spike,

I am ashamed to live in Burlington. I’ve lived here all my life, raised 3 kids and now 2 years from retirement. I can’t afford to move until I retire.

I worked 2 jobs to get my kids through school. They always told my wife and me to move away from this town.

How can the city council in good faith give Slagle a raise? What has he done for this community?

He is a poor manager, told us the railroad lawsuit was about jobs, kept Edwards' free ride home a secret from the people and is a lousy golfer.

For this kind of money, we can at least get someone that can play good golf. Maybe if we did, we might be able to attract some better jobs than minimum wage casino jobs.

Moving in 2

10:09:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle To Get A Raise??


Spike,

What has he done to deserve a raise? $5,000.00 a year towards retirement, $4,200.00 towards a car, wages over $100k a year.

We don't need a city manager for life. Couldn't we get a young city manager at half the cost who would be willing to work everyday and have a vision towards the future?

Not suprising, you see Slagle and Hoschek at the same functions – that’s one big hog trough - by looking at Slagle and the way he's bulking up - Timmy may get pushed away from the trough.

A-non-e-mous

We’ve never seen any vision from Slagle. What we see is consistent mismanagement of the budget, deceit and lies.

The only reason taxes lowered slightly was a State adjustment. It wasn’t anything Bruce Slagle did.

And it sure isn’t anything the City Council did except some wrist action with their big old rubber stamp.

Spike



10:08:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Slagle Gets Raise From Drunken Thug


I keep saying it can’t get any more bizarre in Burlington. Yet, everyday it does.

Our drunken loser mayor decided to reform the method to evaluate the job performance. Apparently, in a drunken stupor, the mayor wants to raise Slagle’s pay 3.5% to over $101,000. That’s a worthy sum for a known public liar and champion of deceit.

What is more bizarre, Edwards wants to revisit Slagle’s pay in 5 months and raise his pay some more. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised at this since Slagle is Edward’s crutch in office.

I had great hopes for Councilmen Scott and Thomas. What a disappointment. Their campaign mantra was “we don’t want to go against a prior council’s decision” when they discussed the railroad lawsuit. Looks like that mantra applies to everything else they should fix and is only a cop-out.

It looks like they have picked up their prior bad habits and big old rubber stamp. The citizens got duped by these two and gave them a chance to redeem themselves. What a mistake.

In case you boneheads missed the memo, public opinion dictates you fire city staff that repeatedly lies to the public, not reward them for lies and deceit.

And that same memo applies to Scott Power.

What the hell is the matter with you people? No wonder Burlington is the laughing stock of Iowa. But his time, laughing at the antics of a drunk is not funny.

Spike
10:00:38 - SPIKE - No comments

12 June

Serious Explosion At IAAP


Sources confirm there was a serious explosion on Line 1 at the IAAP today. At least 2 people are missing and presumed dead. Two other workers were injured when approximately 200 pounds of explosive detonated.

Click here for a view of the damage.
20:48:22 - SPIKE - No comments

POWERS CAN STILL WIN!


Spike,

Thanks for providing us with information no one else is providing for us.

Slagle & Edwards would like to micro-manage a Class I Railroad which does commerce across the United States. BNSF is constantly growing in a tough competitive and changing market. Even as the population of the country grows larger, Burlington continues to shrink. They need to find something they can handle.

Scott Powers could not have researched or investigated any rail history beyond talking to local labor union leaders. There was never any opinion, consultation or advice from the national labor attorneys in Washington DC as promised.

My jaw just about fell to the floor when I read in the BNSF opinion filing that one of the city's witnesses has had two personnel injury lawsuits against BNSF. Didn't Powers even research his own witnesses?

There is still a way that Powers can win in the court room. He could walk down the Main Street railroad crossing and find a loose track spike to trip over. Then he could sue BNSF for a million dollars on a personal injury lawsuit. Of course, he would have to find a good lawyer.

XXL

The City told the labor unions to go away, they didn't want their help.

I believe they did that for 3 reasons.

1. If they had the unions' help, the city couldn't cover up the fact the lawsuit was about money.
2. If they had the unions' help, the city would have to share in any proceeds if they won at trial.
3. The union's lawyers would be competent and that would be a problem for Slagle and Power.

At least with tripping over a spike, they had a chance to win. Now, they have to trip over Spike to cover their ass.

That's going to be a lot harder.

Spike


11:26:20 - SPIKE - No comments

11 June

Lawsuit Always About The Money – Never The Jobs


Where’s The Part About Making It So Painful Jobs Reappear?

In the city’s filing Friday, I can find no mention of the City asking the lost railroad jobs to be returned. In fact, I see the City freely admits that the lawsuit is about money, not jobs.

Slagle, Edwards, Ell, King and Power all lied to us. They all said the lawsuit was about jobs. When they got caught in that lie, they changed their story to making it so painful for the railroad that it would be cheaper to bring back the jobs.

Liars, all of them. I told you then and I am reminding you now. Liars.

And to prove it, when you ask for $1.34 million dollars from a multi-billion dollar corporation as a penalty so severe as to force the railroad to bring the jobs back, it becomes laughable. And it would be, if it weren’t another lie about the lawsuit being about jobs.

And never ever forget that the City refused to meet with the railroad and negotiate a settlement. Livingston, Montana got $950,000. Coupled with Power’s legal fees of about $250,000, you think it might have been better to take the money 2 years ago? And we still might be liable for the railroad’s legal fees. And I will estimate those fees are near $800,000 as of Friday. And a lot more to come.

Gross incompetence, from liars.


City filing, pg. 49 -
“This suit followed when that shop and those jobs were lost and the City is seeking some other form of compensation after the closure of the shops. The City has done nothing to interfere with the Railroad’s use of the riverfront property in question. The purpose of the suit is to receive compensation for the Railroad’s use of the riverfront property. ….. While the City would have preferred that the jobs stay in Burlington and that the Railroad not make the decision it ultimately did, this suit followed to seek compensation for the Railroad’s use of this riverfront property.

In addition to the fact that there is no claim in City’s complaint that Railroad be evicted from the riverfront property, Mr. Slagle explained that the City of Burlington has no desire to have the Railroad leave that area and the City’s only desire with relation to the riverfront property is to receive compensation for its use.

City filing, pg. 106 -
“The City has acknowledged that the Railroad shops and employees have been gone for three years and that those jobs are not coming back. City is only seeking just compensation for the riverfront property now that those shops are gone.”

City filing, pg. 110 -
Requiring Railroad to pay fair and reasonable compensation to the City is no more than a cost of doing business for company with 2005 revenues over twelve billion dollars and assets exceeding thirty billion dollars similar to the imposition of a tax on certain railroad cars in the State of Oregon or payment for bridge repairs in Washington County, Iowa.

01:33:50 - SPIKE - No comments

10 June

Notable Moments In The Lawsuit Filing


A couple of things you should read in the BNSF’s proposed opinion and order. If you've already downloaded the opinion, disregard.

Start at document page 21 and read a couple of pages about City's expert witness Dehague's credibility.

Then start at document page 41 and read at least 2 pages (really about the next 10 pages) about the 1985 Agreement and what everyone from the City and their lawyer thought about the 1985 agreement.

None of it seems to match what we've been told by Edwards, Power, Slagle, King, Ell or written about by Quirk. Why is that?

06:35:44 - SPIKE - No comments

Money Burning A Hole In City Pocket


After skimming yesterday's legal filings, I have come to the conclusion that the Burlington City Council is a lot like little kids with money burning a hole in their pocket, only taxpayer money is fueling that irresponsible burning.

To see what $50,000 buys you:
The BNSF’s proposed order for Partial Referral to the Surface Transportation Board, click here.

To see what $125,000 buys you:
The BNSF’s proposed opinion and order, for click here.

To see what $35,000 buys you:
The City’s proposed order for settlement, click here.

To see what the taxpayers get for their money before and after they pay the railroad's legal fees, click here.

"I feel your pain."
Bill Clinton

06:10:19 - SPIKE - No comments

Snowball's Chance In Hell - Power Files City Response


City Attorney Scott Power filed the City's proposed resolution to the railroad lawsuit according to a late check of the Federal Court.

Power has asked the Judge for $1.34 million dollars.

I don't know what they drink in City Hall, but it might be better if they start serving snowballs because there is a better chance hell will freeze over before that happens.



01:11:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Capitol Theatre Rescue League


"Non Profits" Play Politics at Their Tax Exempt Peril

Spike:

I assume the Capitol Theater Rescue League is a not-for-profit. They better watch their step if they wish to use the theater marquee to endorse politicians for office.

"Non profits" who imagine themselves king makers have run afoul of the Internal Revenue Service. Pat Robertson found this out the hard way.

While local law enforcement may let drunk elected officials and those aspiring to join this privilidged group ride rough-shod over the rules, the Feds may not look the other way. I would hate to see some group promoting a worthy cause make a deviation from their main mission into the political arena and suffer the wrath of the IRS.

If you want to be part of the political process, get active in the party and/or campaign of your choice. Leave groups organized for other purposes out of it.

HJ

Good advice.

Spike



01:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

09 June

BNSF Files Motions - Power MIA


The BNSF filed another big stack of motions today. We'll have more on this later.

Conspicuously absent were any filings from Scott Power. Today was the deadline.

Oh, I forgot. Friday is golf day.

No time for anything else.

18:40:11 - SPIKE - No comments

Railroad Lawsuit Filings Due Today


Filings are due today in Federal court. Both the City and the BNSF will file their ideas on how the case should be settled should they win. Briefs in opposition are due June 30.

That old Scott Power money machine is just running wild, you can't even see the numbers on the dial.

If you think that is scary, just imagine what the city will pay for the railroad's legal fees.

04:56:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Surprise - Heland Doesn’t Know Term Length!!


On Wednesday’s Big Show on KCPS 1150 AM Fred and 7 were talking about election issues and term length with Supervisor Ed Blow and wannabe Jeff Heland.

When Fred asked both candidates how many years the Supervisor’s term was, Heland incorrectly answered 3 years. Blow answered correctly 4 years.

Fred: “Is it 3 years?”

Fred: “Is it a 3 year term?”

Blow: “4 years.”

Heland: “3 years.”

Fred: “Can you, umm….”

So there you go. That’s how qualified your top vote getter is to hold public office.

04:55:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Hazardous Material Gone? Old Rutherford Building Safe?


Over the last several months the City has been loading railroad hopper cars with hazardous waste from the sewage treatment plant. It had been stored there for years and nothing was done about it until we made mention of it.

No one will admit what the waste was. A special ventilation system was installed on the building.

Whatever it was it was something that couldn't be spread on farm fields.

I wonder if the City pollutes the railroad's property will Scott Power sue the railroad for selling the city the property for the sewage treatment plant?

04:35:00 - SPIKE - No comments

The Burlington Channel?


Spike:

A farmer finally decided to buy a TV. The store assured him that they would install the antenna and TV the next day.

The next evening the farmer turned on his new TV and found only political ads on every channel. The next morning he turned the TV on and found only political ads again.

When he came in to eat lunch he tried the TV again but still only found political ads.

The next day when he still found only political ads he called the store to complain. The owner said that it was impossible for every channel to only have political ads, but agreed to send their repairman to check the TV.

When the TV repairman turned on the TV he found that the farmer was right. After looking at the TV for a while he went outside to check the antenna. In a few minutes he returned and told the farmer he had found the problem.

The antenna had been installed on top of the windmill and grounded to the manure spreader.

SF

That must be somewhere else. Our windmill and manure spreader only works at night so they can spread it at daylight. Trouble is those vanes just keep slapping Delaney in the head like a baseball card in bicycle spokes.

Spike

03:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Sore Loser Will Never Get It – He’s Still A Loser


My favorite example of election losers flushed his brain again. I swear these late nights wherever he is hanging his hat is beginning to make him delusional.

Sore Loser tries once again (how many times has that been?) to tell us something he knows nothing about. The only thing Cry Baby succeeds in is demonstrating why voters flushed him to the choice position of last place in the last council election.

Maybe Cry Baby would like to explain his role as a council member in approving a $10,000 expenditure of taxpayer money to partially fund a railroad traction motor study that was written from factually flawed research.

Even though Brian Tapp from Southeast Iowa Regional Planning and others were aware the report was flawed, Tapp presented it as a factual document to the Iowa Department of Economic Development so Regional Planning could receive the remainder of the project funding. More of my tax money pissed away.

Cry Baby, could you tell us just one more time; was the railroad lawsuit about jobs, or about the money? Do you even remember which lie you told?

Did the State Ombudsman determine the closed session council meeting where you voted to sue the railroad illegal? Did the State Ombudsman send the council written notice of that determination and the city attorney fail to respond in the time frame according to that notice? Weren’t you elected to oversee the city staff and ensure that they operated the city according to Iowa law?

How many days did you get on the KCPS Big Show 1150 AM and tell one lie after another? Or expound on his brilliant level of misinformation?

Maybe you could tell us what your justification was for filing an election complaint against Grow Greater Burlington, an organization you were a board member of? Was it because they didn’t endorse you? Do you still sit on that board?

You seem to have chronic case of CFTD - Comprehension of The Facts Disorder. It might also be DBR – Doofus Beyond Reproach.

Whatever it is, when you get it fixed, you might be able to run with us dogs. Until then, stay on the porch where you belong. You are in serious violation of your website mission statement.

02:32:00 - SPIKE - No comments

08 June

Winegard Casino Approved - Boat To Ft Madison


The Gaming Commission granted Winegard approval to his casino in Burlington. Catfish Bend will move to Fort Madison.

Give it a year of unprofitable operation and the boat will be gone.

12:28:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Diewold Slopping In Nursing Home


According to Diewold, he solicited votes for himself in nursing homes. Granted, not everyone in a nursing home is unable to vote and those that can should be able to do so.

What we hear is that the locals surf the nursing homes looking for residents with incomplete ballots, tell the resident that they will help them with it, get the resident to sign the envelope and then fill in the ballot for the resident.

Coupled with the other possible absentee ballot improprieties, this election smells. And it is Democrat versus Democrat.

12:25:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Grandpa, What Was A Newspaper?


Spike

While you can not wrap fish in yesterday's electrons, the web has won the battle of disseminating news quickly and if wanted, in depth.

Should a contest be started as to the best use of the Advertiser's building on S. Main once it is abandon?

TL

We should just move the Court House down there then Heland/Hoschek wouldn't have to build a new court house south of the Daily Planet.

Then all direction would come from where the advertiser thinks it should be.

Spike
12:18:29 - SPIKE - No comments

Heland Sign Legal?


As reported many places, it is unclear whether or not the sign posted on the Capitol Theatre marqee was legal even with an attribute for who paid for the ad.

Iowa law says no signs on corporate property unless a campaign office is within that building. And the attribution has to be in such a size as to be easily read.

So I guess we'll see if SL King files a campaign complaint with the Ethics Board over this deal.

11:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Local Political Leader Source of Artistic Inspiration


Great One:

Watching South Park on the Comedy Channel set my mind to making connections.

I know it is not polite to point out people with AHDD, but the character of Timmy has an uncanny resemblance to a member of the Des Moines County Board of Supervisors.

Is it possible that the creative minds who create South Park have been reading the Burlington Advertiser and/or Derailed? Did they change the last name to protect the guilty? Am I reading too much into something like all those Kennedy/Lincoln assassination comparisons?

I know the disclaimer always says, "Any resemblance to any person living or dead is purely coincidental." I guess truth is just stranger than fiction.

DG

How dare you insult South Park Timmy!!

Spike


11:19:00 - SPIKE - No comments

07 June

Blow Signs Missing On West Hill


Spike,

I noticed some Blow signs missing along Leebrick, Starr and the Hagemann area on Sunday. I pointed it out to my wife when we went for a walk Sunday AM.

TK

Probably the same thugs that placed the Diewold signs in their place and frequented nursing homes begging for votes. Nursing homes, I didn't think these trough feeders could get their snouts any lower.

We need a formal investigation for the absentee votes. I smell vote fraud. Especially when you have a drunk liar and the unemployed gathering them.

Spike

09:45:47 - SPIKE - No comments

Incompetence Insures "Status Quo"


Spike:

Blow has a few smarts and gets things done. Blow has been a more than competent County Supervisor. Blow might change things for the better for the majority. For these reasons, Blow must go.

Those who hold real power behind the throne do not want change. That was obvious when the Izvestia of the inbred local establishment, a.k.a. the Advertiser, denounced Blow. These people hand the political system over to drunks, morons, and petty tyrants.

Those who are in a hurry to create wealth through change have little time for fools. That is why those who fear change as a threat to their status and wealth keep a parade of fools in local political offices. If your money were on the line in a major investment would you want to be dealing with the drunk Mayor, or Little Timmy Hoschek.

Blow has been told in no uncertain terms by the powers that be that he should go. Blow is not alone. Nearly 1/3 of Burlington's population over the last 40 years has gotten wise and gone elsewhere.

The recent election results are simply another symptom manifested by a terminal patient. What passes as the status quo in Burlington is in reality a form of slow death.

GH

If you would have written this 3 years ago, I would have laughed and called you a crackpot. Now, we are the crackpots for putting up with this abysmal way of life in Southeast Iowa.

The advertiser loves Hoschek because he runs to them anytime he has a hangnail and spills his guts like a little boy that can't carry his paperbag. Hoschek can't carry the load.

The advertiser loves Heland because he doesn't have enough sense to actually govern without the opinion of the advertiser in the forefront of his decisions.

Spike


09:35:00 - SPIKE - No comments

06 June

Who Won? Heland Can't Get 'Er Done


Heland Might Have Won Supervisor's Race - Blow In 2nd

No Clear Winner - 35% of Vote Needed - 70 Absentees Will Set Stage

Diewold May Make A Run As An Independent In November


There was no clear winner in Tuesday's Supervisor race. Although Heland has the most votes, he failed to win 35% of the vote to be declared the winner. With 70 absentee votes still outstanding, the final vote won't be known until next Tuesday.

If Heland or Blow aren't outright winners with 35% of the vote, this whole mess moves to convention where ANYBODY can declare their candidacy as the Democratic candidate. Here comes Leon.

Less than 100 votes made the difference. Edwards and Hoschek were at work with absentee votes, so there is a problem there. I'd file a formal election complaint to see if the handwriting and ink color is all the same.

If Heland ultimately wins, the citizens can pay to build a consensus, do more plans, attend more meetings, get more business cards and not much more other than lunch. Oh, I did forget, talk and say little.

It really grates my ass that the stooges at the paper wrote their crap that somehow Ed Blow did something wrong in several instances when they knew better. Delaney knew better. Quirk knew better. And they still wrote their "analysis" and unsigned editorial with a slant to influence the voters by suggesting impropriety.

Delaney has no values and with his attitude he will never be a leader, only a manager of a remote office for some out-of-state owner that could care less about Southeast Iowa. Look at the mess you jackasses created now.

I can't believe that this mess can smell any worse than it does now. Other than Diewold being so dumb to think he is going to win a 4th time as an independent. After all, Diewold was the guy that said he didn't care whether there were 3 Democrats or 5 Democrats were sitting in the Supervisors' chairs.

I guess since he is unemployed he needs some trough to feed from and the independent trough is as good as any.

21:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

05 June

Switching Political Parties On Tuesday Is O.K.

Spike,

Any Registered voter can vote Tuesday June 6th, You just have to declare which political party you plan to vote for when you get to your polling place.

You can change parties on the spot and VOTE. If you decide you want to switch back to your original party, you may do so after 24 hours has expired.

Iowa Voter Registration Forms are at each County Auditor's office, or you can submit the registration form that is in your phone book (see government pages) and mail it to your county court house.

TK2

Thanks for the information.

Vote On Tuesday.

Spike


18:10:07 - SPIKE - No comments

Primary Voting - Go Vote Tuesday!


Prove Spike Wrong - Go Vote

Spike,

Can anyone vote tomorrow, or just registered Democrats for the primary?

Vote, get out and vote!

6-6-06 I hope they don't vote in Heland or Diewold. This could be the real OMEN!

CF

In the primary elections you have to vote party lines. I don't know if it is too late to make the one day party change to vote switch parties and vote as a Democrat or Republican, but you can try.

As indifferent as the voters are, I don't expect much turnout.

Prove Spike wrong, Go Vote!

As for the 6-6-6 connotation, if you think Diewold was a bust in his last 2 terms, even the suggestion of his Omen III return should be enough to get people out to vote him down. Heland hasn't been to a Supervisors meeting in over a month and Diewold runs about 40 minutes late if, and when he shows up.

I did hear a good story about Diewold. If elected, Diewold wants to move the Supervisor's meeting time to 11:00 a.m. since he can't get out of bed in the morning. Maybe that was his downfall for the 4-5 jobs he has lost in the last few years - laying in bed only makes money in one profession.

We don't want, or need any more losers in the Court House. We have Hoschek. That's more than voters should have to endure. If you have doubts about Diewold, his own brothers don't have his signs in their yards.

Spike


10:27:18 - SPIKE - No comments

04 June

Blue Angels In Davenport At Quad City Air Show


Performances Sunday

The U.S. Navy Blue Angels performed Saturday at the Davenport Airport located in Mt. Joy just north I-80, west of Highway 61. It was a perfect day for flying. WW II airplanes and everything else in between is on hand.

Flying starts about noon and the big iron pops about 2:00 with the F-15. The Blues start about 2:55 with a Fat Albert C-130T JATO shot off the airport. It is impressive. Fat Albert ends it part of the show with a high altitude, steep approach that will absolutely amaze you.

With good weather like it was Saturday, the airplanes are low, close and spectacular. The smell of that kerosene is like perfume.

But some of the best action can be found driving out of the show when the pumped-up minivan crowd tries pulling hard 4-G turns onto 61 Southbound.

Show Info

Show Performers

Fat Albert demonstrates its jet-assisted takeoff (JATO) capability. Eight solid-fuel rocket bottles, four on each side, attached near the rear paratrooper doors thrust the Hercules skyward. Fired simultaneously, the JATO bottles allow the mammoth transport aircraft to takeoff within 1,500 feet, climb at a 45-degree angle, and propel it to an altitude of 1,000 feet in approximately 15 seconds.

An all-Marine Corps crew of three officers and five enlisted personnel operate the Lockheed-Martin C-130T Hercules, affectionately known as Fat Albert Airlines. Fat Albert joined the team in 1970 and flies more than 140,000 miles each season. It carries more than 40 maintenance and support personnel, their gear and enough spare parts and communication equipment to complete a successful air show.

Fat Albert cruises at a speed of more than 320 knots (approximately 360 miles per hour) at 27,000 feet. Four Allison turboprop engines, which produce more than 16,000 shaft-horsepower, provide Fat Albert Airlines with the power to land and depart on runways as short as 2,500 feet.









All images courtesy of the United States Navy Flight Demonstration Team.

12:01:00 - SPIKE - No comments

01 June

Library Problems Are Ethanol Problems


Yesterday on KCPS’s Big Show 1150 AM Fred and 7 jumped into the fray over the Burlington Library issuing an ultimatum to Danville, Middletown and West Burlington to pay their exorbitant new library use fees or face expulsion from the fold.

Fred opined that one of the Supervisor candidates should take the steps to jump in the middle of this mess even though the sides are deadlocked.

In the real world of economic development and tax abatements there are usually 3 areas of tax assessment that are never touched by an abatement; school, fire protection and library assessments.

Prudent economic development policy mandates that if you are in the business of building the community and providing the tax abatements to do that, the least a company can do is pay the costs for community safety and education for the citizens.

When Hinkle, Hoschek and Diewold pulled the 20-year tax abatement out of their hat, no one had any concern for the ramifications this would put on the County as a whole. All they could see was get the deal landed at any cost.

The first year of operation the ethanol plant paid a 34% return on investors’ money. The second year the return was 17%. They also paid down their loans, had a fire and then bitched about paying $20,000 for a used fire truck to fight alcohol fires followed by the announcement of plans to build 2 more ethanol plants while spending over $100 million dollars to do it.

Meanwhile, the Library Board wants to extort Danville, Middletown and West Burlington to pay for the library's poor planning of a capital project.

To add to this mess, Danville, Middletown and West Burlington have never assessed their citizens taxes to pay for library usage. They were able to pay for it from their budget. Now, they can’t meet the outrageous increases demanded by the library.

So here’s a solution.

All 3 cities will pay more to use the library. But the amount paid will be prorated on the number of citizens compared to Burlington and they will have 5 years to incrementally reach this payment level. The fee will be adjusted for population changes.

This holds the library’s feet to the fire to control costs. Otherwise, in a year or two, the automatic hand will be in everyone’s pocket again.

In return for 5 years to reach this level, Danville, Middletown and West Burlington must begin to levy a library tax to pay for the fees. The costs will be minimal and not a lump sum with no tangible end in sight.

If Hinkle, Hoschek and Diewold had done their job competently, we wouldn’t be in this mess because the ethanol plant would have to pay their school, fire protection and library taxes.

In most jurisdictions the school, fire protection and library districts must approve the requested tax abatement. Most entities add a performance clause tied to the tax abatement so if the company does well, they start paying their fair share sooner if a full tax abatement has to be given. Maybe those rules don’t apply here.

Given the revenue stream of the ethanol plant they can afford it. And they should be paying for all of it.

Nobody will like this settlement. But when you skirt conventional thinking and prudent business policies to make a deal at any cost, you have to live with the consequences.

Spike


01:48:19 - SPIKE - No comments

Spike Goin' Golfing?


Spike,

Will you be playing golf in the 7th annual Chamber Business Appreciation Golf Classic August 24th? Or, is this only reserved for City managers and newspaper editors?

DK

I wasn’t invited. I guess that might be because of my inability to build relationships according to Expert Loser King. Lots of business is conducted on the golf course, just not here in Burlington.

The real reason I won’t go is even though there are good people involved in trying to find solutions to the economic problems in Southeast Iowa, I can’t stand to deal with people I have no respect for. Life is way too short and incompetence is a loser’s game.

Then there would be the subject of why it took 18 months to meet with the Governor. My quest for that answer would ruin everyone’s day.

I have visions of bent golf clubs dancing in my head.

Spike


01:42:12 - SPIKE - No comments

Above The Law In Burlington


Spike,

It is my understanding that yard and other signs advocating a candidate, not an issue, are not permitted on incorporated property under Iowa law.

Nearly every business and professional person incorporates to shield personal assets. Putting up a politician's sign is considered an in-kind contribution. Corporations are not supposed to be contributing to political campaigns.

Drive around Burlington. It is another law ignored. Some may not know of the law, but be warned. Take down the candidate signs on incorporated property.

My favorite candidate sign was on a former bank building at Main and Jefferson. The candidate named was the same as the building is named. The building has as a tenant a law firm containing the same name.

If you break a leg on the stairs in that building and sue, it is a safe bet you would sue a corporation of some sort and have no access to the personal assets of the name on the building. Ignorance of the law there should be no excuse.

It has been demonstrated that being elected to office in Burlington allows you to ignore drunk driving laws. It appears any seeking office in Burlington may ignore campaign finance laws as well.

GH

Political signs cannot be in the public right-of-way, either. If you go to Division and Plane, all kinds of Diewold signs on the public right-of-way. And this is just one instance of Diewold signs gone astray. They're like this all over town.

I know of one case where the pain-in-ass neighbor moved a sign to the public right-of-way to get the property owner in trouble. The neighbor caught it before a problem developed and then took photos of the other neighbor's signs on the parking.

Gosh, I love politics.

Spike


01:38:53 - SPIKE - No comments