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Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a bill into law Friday that extends a statewide sales tax for school infrastructure improvements.

Flickr/Creative Commons

 

Heavy rainstorms have drenched the state over the last few weeks, and it’s not looking like Iowans' luck will change any time soon.

On this “news buzz” edition of River to River, host Ben Kieffer is joined by Elwynn Taylor, professor emeritus of meteorology at Iowa State University for a look at the impact of several unusually wet weeks, particularly as farmers continue to work to get crops in and out of the ground.

Also on the program:

Russ Morris/Flickr

Iris is an easy-to-grow perennial flowering plant that has more than 200 species of beautiful flowers that come in many shades. Iris takes its name from the Greek Goddess of the rainbow because of its wide range of colors.

polk county court
Stephen Matthew Milligan / Wikimedia Commons

A Planned Parenthood lawyer argued before an Iowa judge Friday that a new law banning the organization from participating in two federally-funded sex education programs should be put on hold.

Kate Payne/IPR

The floodwaters have largely receded in Davenport, weeks after the Mississippi River crested at its highest level on record and flooded parts of downtown. The city is known for its progressive approach to flooding, giving the river more room to ebb and flow while other communities build walls. But the recent flooding is testing this philosophy of resilience.

medical marijuana
Katarina Sostaric/IPR

Medical marijuana supporters delivered a petition with more than 1,500 signatures to Gov. Kim Reynolds' office Thursday morning urging her to sign a medical marijuana bill that would raise the state's THC cap. 

New York City mayor Bill de Blasio, speaks to protestors outside a McDonald's in Des Moines. The Democratic presidential candidate said he supports making $15-per-hour the national minimum wage.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Workers and union supporters were joined by New York City mayor and Democratic presidential candidate Bill de Blasio at a protest in front of a Des Moines McDonald's.

Katie Peikes / IPR

An Iowa native who heads a national support network for people abused by priests is calling for a statewide investigation into child sex abuse in the Catholic Church.

Mike Mozart / Flickr

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, manufactured by Monsanto-Bayer, is widely used in Iowa. It's sprayed on thousands of acres of farmland each year and is commonly used in lawns and gardens.

Earlier this month, a California jury awarded a couple more than $2 million in a dispute against Monsanto, ruling that the plaintiffs contracted non-Hodgkin lymphoma because of their use of Roundup. This is the third such case to end this way in California in the last two years.

Bayer continues to defend the safety of the product and it's hard to know what to believe.

davidwilson1949

You wouldn't expect a world-renowned charcoal and pastel artist like Cecile Houel to move from Paris to the southeastern corner of Iowa, and she didnt either. But Houel fell in love with Iowa, drawing strength and inspiration from the Mississippi River.

In this Talk of Iowa segment, Charity Nebbe talks with Houel about her life and career in Paris, her first impressions of Iowa and what has kept her here, her love of humanity, and her desire to heal through her work.

Richard Koenig

 

Debra Marquart had not originally intended to become an acclaimed poet, a distinguished professor at Iowa State University, or Iowa's next poet laureate. Marquart instead wanted to be a road musician, singing lead for a rock band and traveling from gig to gig, but life took her on a different path. 

In this edition of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Marquart about being named the new Iowa Poet Laureate, her life as a road musician before her literary pursuits, and the impact poetry can have on people.

governor reynolds
John Pemble/IPR file

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a bill into law Thursday that makes some changes to how cities and counties raise property taxes.

Simon and Schuster

Through the arch of two wars, 17 years of ongoing conflict, and the lives of six soldiers, writer and U.S. Marine Corps veteran CJ Chivers takes us through the experiences of modern American combat vets in his latest book "The Fighters."

In this hour of River to River, host Ben Kieffer talks with Chivers about why he felt compelled to tell the stories of these conflicts and the veterans that served in them.

Madeleine King / Iowa Public Radio

With great live music happening every weekend, it can be hard to plan your summers accordingly. Luckily, we're here to guide you through it.

Katie Peikes / IPR file photo

The U.S. Senate has reportedly reached a deal with the White House on a long-delayed disaster aid bill, according to Politico. 

Earlier Thursday, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) said she wanted help to reach victims of natural disasters, some of whom have needed it for more than a year.

Iowans recovering from flooding and other survivors of natural disasters across the country are waiting for the federal assistance they are eligible for.

Flickr/OakleyOriginals

The National Weather Service has confirmed two tornadoes touched down in western Iowa Wednesday morning near the towns of Adair and Anita.

Clay Masters/IPR file

Representative Cindy Axne (IA-03) grilled U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin at a House Financial Services Committee hearing this morning. The subject: how growing tarriff concerns may impact Iowans and other Americans. 

On this "politics day" edition of River to River, host Ben Kieffer is joined by Evan Renfro, assistant professor of political science at the University of Northern Iowa and Steffen Schmidt, Lucken Endowed professor of political science at Iowa State University, for a look at some of the top political headlines of the week.

tom miller
Katarina Sostaric / IPR

Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds vetoed a measure Wednesday that would have limited the Democratic attorney general’s authority to join out-of-state lawsuits. Instead, the two officials had a private meeting and reached an agreement that will have a similar effect.

Courtesy Orchestra Iowa

Orchestra Iowa’s “German Requiem” concert will be featured on this week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast.

Alisabeth Von Presley

Chaplin is the showbiz musical about the silent film legend the world couldn’t stop talking about.”

The original Broadway musical was written by Christopher Curtis, with help from Thomas Meehan. The musical depicts the life of legendary silent film star Charlie Chaplin.

Revival Theatre Company is one of only two theatres in the United States that will be producing the musical before it “hits the London stage with a new world premiere in 2019.”

Charlie Chaplin is the “undeniable genius that forever changed the way America went to the movies.”

Kate Payne/IPR

Iowa State Representative Andy McKean of Anamosa says he’s seen an outpouring of support, and some criticism, since he left the Republican Party for the Democrats in April. Once the longest serving Republican in the Iowa Statehouse, McKean says he doesn’t regret his decision.

abortion law protest
Katarina Sostaric / IPR

Abortion rights supporters rallied at the Iowa Capitol Tuesday as part of a nationwide protest against new abortion restrictions in other states.

Katie Peikes / IPR

More than two months after the Missouri River and its tributaries flooded western Iowa, many people in southwest Iowa are still out of their homes. Former Maryland Congressman and Democratic presidential candidate John Delaney toured a flood-damaged home on Tuesday and is touting policies to deal with climate change.

Raelyn Ramey / Special to Iowa Public Radio

EleanorGrace self-debuted her first recordings after taping a few tracks in her bedroom and posting them online when she was 13.

Penguin Books

Did you know that in 1958 the US Air Force investigated nuking the moon? This would not be the first, or last of many covert schemes considered by US intelligence that were birthed out of desperate situations.

Katarina Sostaric/IPR

When Iowa’s “fetal heartbeat” bill was signed into law by Governor Kim Reynolds in May, 2018 it was widely considered the most restrictive abortion law in the country. It was struck down by a Polk County judge early this year, who ruled that the law violated the due process and equal protection clauses of the Iowa Constitution, before the legislation could go into practice.

Former Des Moines city councilwoman, Christine Hensley, has been helping organize opposition to the construction of a new federal courthouse on a former YMCA site.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Some Des Moines business leaders and city council members want the federal government to reconsider plans for a new courthouse on a coveted piece of real estate in downtown Des Moines. The agency in charge of the $137 million project could decide how to move forward as soon as Wednesday.

Cyndi Gryte

After growing up in small-town Iowa and graduating from Iowa State University, Cyndi Gryte went to Manhattan where her wildest adventures and biggest blunders would go on to inspire her semi-autobiographical debut novel, “Sydney Shag and the Sirens: Heavy on the Vodka and a Little bit Dirty."

UNMIT /Martine Perret / Flickr

Early this month the UN's Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services released a summary of an upcoming 1,500-page report, where it states that one million plants, insects and animal species are on the verge of extinction.

facebook.com/tacocatband

Tacocat is a quartet that makes fun music.  With a band name that's a palindrome, how could they not?  But making danceable punky pop music does not preclude them from delivering thoughtful lyrics that comment on our culture and world.

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