Rendering of new $9-million Ascentra Credit Union headquarters proposed for part of city's Town Square block. Source: Legat Architects

An architectural rendering of one of three retail/commercial buildings proposed for the northwest corner of Forest Grove and Middle Roads, Bettendorf, part of the sports complex under construction at that same location.

A Great Blue Heron rests on a log in the Mississippi River above Lock & Dam 15, Davenport on a foggy fall morning.

Construction work on support piers for the new Interstate 74 bridge between Bettendorf and Moline now is under way.

Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc. posts higher earnings despite 2.5 percent drop in overall revenues

Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc. posted higher earnings for its third quarter ended January 24 despite a 2.5 percent drop in overall revenues.

The gambling firm, owner of the Bettendorf Isle of Capri casino riverboat, reported third quarter earnings of $6.6 million, or 16 cents per share, compared with $5.4 million, or 13 cents per share, for the same period a year ago.

Residential growth and urban sprawl a very good thing when it comes to balancing city budget

Urban sprawl may have a negative connotation among the general public, but it is easy to understand why Bettendorf city officials love the spreading residential subdivisions filling up former cornfields north of 53rd Avenue.

The steady growth of new homes in north Bettendorf and Pleasant Valley – plus the escalating value of existing residential property in the city – generate healthy annual increases for city coffers to fund the ever-increasing cost of additional employees, higher salaries, health and retirement benefits and debt service.

Federal judge orders Cricket Hollow Zoo to give up its tigers, lemurs; cites inadequate care, sanitation

Cricket Hollow Zoo has been ordered to transfer its lemurs and tigers to a licensed U.S. Department of Agricultural facility under a federal district court ruling issued Thursday (2/11).

The judge ruled that the endangered animals at the troubled roadside zoo were harmed by the failure of its owners to provide adequate veterinary care and sanitation.

Lee Enterprise stock falls to new 52-week low after reporting 5 percent drop in first quarter revenues

Lee Enterprises, Inc. stock today (2/4) fell to a new 52-week low – $1.15 per share – after reporting first quarter operating revenues declined 5 percent compared with a year ago.

The company's first quarter includes the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday season, typically the best advertising period for newspapers, and the results apparently disappointed investors. Shares of the Davenport-based media firm, owner of the Quad City Times, dropped more than 10 cents per share in heavy trading after the company announced its earnings.

EPA reports toxic chemicals released by QC industries fell in 2014; Tyson Foods tops local list

Toxic chemicals released to the environment by metro Quad Cities area industries fell by nearly 20 percent in 2014, according to a new report issued Thursday (1/21) by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The top five facilities by total disposal or releases to the environment were: Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc., Joslin; Nichols Aluminum's casting plant, Davenport; Lafarge North America (now Continental Cement), Buffalo; John Deere Harvester Works, East Moline; and Alcoa's Davenport Works, Bettendorf.

Isle president and CEO announces retirement; will be replaced by chief financial officer April 27

The Isle of Capri Casino, Inc. President and CEO Virginia McDowell will step down April 27 after nine years at the helm of the St. Louis-based gambling firm.

Eric L. Hausler, currently chief financial officer, will succeed McDowell as chief executive officer, and Arnold L. Block, currently chief operating officer at the Isle, will become president and chief operating officer.

McDowell will retire from the company. According to the company SEC filing January 14, her decision to retire from the board of directors "is not because of any disagreement with the company."

EPA survey finds $271 billion needed to shore up wastewater and stormwater treatment facilities

A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study says $271 billion is needed to maintain and improve the nation’s wastewater infrastructure, including leaking pipes that carry wastewater to treatment plants, sewage treatment plant technology, and management of stormwater runoff.

Constitution upgrade alert! New Version 3.0 would align U.S. Constitution with actual practice

The United States was founded on U.S. Constitution Version 1.0 of 1789. Version 2.0, released in 1791, made 10 significant upgrades to protect citizens against viral government overreach.

Since then, Congress and the states have authorized incremental changes, culminating in version 2.27.

However, system administrators authorized in version 1.0 – the executive, legislative and judicial branches – have far exceeded the limitations expressed in the Version 2.0 Bill of Rights.

Heavy rains prompt additional sewage overflows; sewage treatment plant once again over capacity

Heavy rain in November and December prompted yet another series of "sanitary sewer overflow (SSO) events" in Bettendorf, resulting in more than 17 million gallons of untreated sewage and storm water being pumped into the Mississippi River.

With the additional sewage bypasses in the last two months of the year, Bettendorf operated pumps along the riverfront a total of 15 days during 2015 and dumped a total of more than 46 million gallons of the storm water and raw sewage into the river.

Animal rights group awaits court ruling; asks to add more evidence to Cricket Hollow Zoo lawsuit

While awaiting a U.S. District Court ruling seeking removal of endangered animals from Cricket Hollow Zoo near Manchester, animal rights advocates have filed a motion to add more evidence in support of their case.

The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) and plaintiffs Tracey and Lisa Kuehl filed the motion Dec. 18 asking U.S. District Court Chief Magistrate Judge Jon Stuart Scoles to admit U.S. Agricultural Department inspection reports on the zoo from last July and September.

The motion to allow the two USDA inspections reports from July and September into evidence was approved by Judge Scoles in an order filed Wednesday (12/30).

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