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Chris Umscheid

CCA to reduce district tax levy

OXFORD– The board of directors for the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) community school district approved the certified budget for the 2014-2015 fiscal year as well as Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL) and School Improvement Local Option tax (SILO) budgets.

Women of Troy put away J-Hawks

4-1 win keeps West perfect

CEDAR RAPIDS– The Iowa City West High Women of Troy had little trouble last Thursday (April 17) with the Cedar Rapids Jefferson J-Hawks, beating the bluebirds 4-1 in varsity action on the field below Kingston Stadium.

He did it HIS WAY

Randall bows out with few regrets

SOLON– Typically, when a long-tenured coach leaves an athletic program under a cloud of controversy, they say they want to focus on the positives and not dwell on the negatives.
Brad Randall, now the former Solon High School varsity boys’ basketball coach, is no exception.
With a winning record full of accomplishments, it’s easy for him to emphasize the highlights.

The Retreat: seriously good coffee in a relaxed atmosphere

A break from the hassles of life

ELY– “We take our coffee very seriously.
Mark Banowetz, co-owner of The Retreat in Ely, and his wife Kathleen opened the coffee shop and bakery in a renovated house along State Street in January 2013. In just one year, it has become a daily destination for many, and a new discovery for many more.
“We already had the house and Mark was using it for his own business (Great American Shed Co.),” Kathleen said. “We always kind of wanted to do a coffee shop so we started thinking about it and doing research, and one day, we decided we could do it here in this house with a little extra work.’”

Clipper girls start soccer season 2-0

Road win in Wellman leads to victory at home

TIFFIN– Clear Creek Amana’s (CCA) girls varsity soccer team opened its season with a 3-0 road win last Monday (April 7) against Mid-Prairie in Wellman and followed it the next day with a 6-1 win over Central Clinton of DeWitt at home.
At Wellman, the Clippers took a 2-0 lead at the half with a pair of goals by Kelsey Hall off assists by the Bormann sisters, Emma and Hannah. The pair teamed up in the second half as Emma scored on an assist from Hannah.
Clipper coach Matt Harding pointed out CCA outshot the Golden Hawks 17-3.

Brez bows out

Longtime West High coach retires

IOWA CITY– One day earlier and it may have been written off as an April Fool’s Day prank.
But Kathy Bresnahan’s post on the social media site Facebook last Wednesday (April 2) was no joke as she announced her resignation from coaching the Iowa City West High Women of Troy varsity volleyball program.

Johnson County Sheriff’s office releases 2013 annual report

Curious trends in crime stats

JOHNSON COUNTY– Sometimes there are no clear cut answers to explain why things are the way they are. As an example, the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) released its annual report documenting the department’s activities in 2013. While some categories of offenses are down, Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek is at a loss as to why, exactly. On the other hand, in general, calls for service are up, continuing a trend that shows the department is busier with each passing year.

Slight decline in tax rate for CCA taxpayers

Board looks at FY15 budget

AMANA–The board of directors of the Clear Creek Amana Community School District (CCA) discussed the district’s budget in a work session preceding the regular monthly meeting Wednesday, March 12, at Amana Elementary.
“There could be changes to the total numbers,” board secretary Lori Robertson said, “but there will not be changes to the proposed tax rate.”

CCA shapes 2014-2015 school year schedule

Board finds calendar acceptable, not perfect

AMANA– Clear Creek Amana (CCA) School District Superintendent Tim Kuehl readily admits the proposed academic calendar for the 2014-2015 school year isn’t perfect. But, “the perfect calendar does not exist,” he said.
Kuehl presented a proposed calendar at a school board work session Wednesday, March 12, at Amana Elementary. The board will likely approve the final product on Wednesday, April 9, with a public hearing prior to their vote.

Three in a row, way to go!

DES MOINES– In 1952, the Davenport High School’s boys’ basketball team won their third consecutive state tournament championship. In 1984, the Royals of Cedar Rapids Regis achieved the “three-peat.” No other team has done that since.
Until last week, when Bergie’s Boys rolled into “The Well.”

Greyson Gray: legend, terrorist foe, 12-year-old

North Liberty author writes popular young adult series

NORTH LIBERTY– Some people struggle their entire lives trying to figure out what it is they are passionate about, and what they want to do. For Benjamin, “B.C.” Tweedt, the answer is clear.
He wants to be a writer.

Solon school district studies the use of technology

SOLON– Technology is a word tossed about casually on a day-to-day basis. But, what it actually entails, and how technology is used, is open for debate and discussion.