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Chris Umscheid

A cluster of controversy

Supervisors give initial approval to Dooley subdivision

District deals with legislative uncertainty

CCA approves 2013-2014 budget

AMANA– Every spring, school districts across Iowa draw up a budget for the next school year and certify it. It’s the art of speculation coupled with the science of fiscal reality.

NLPD’s Venenga born to serve, strong role model

NLPD interim police chief is also city’s 2012 employee of the year

NORTH LIBERTY– In December, the City of North Liberty named police lieutenant Diane Venenga as its 2012 employee of the year. Venenga was cited as, “a solid role model for every officer,” in the city’s press release. Mayor Tom Salm and city administrator Ryan Heiar made the selection, which was open to all city employees.
Since then, Lt. Venenga has been named interim police chief in the wake of chief Jim Warkentin’s resignation earlier this year.

Trojans still 4A state champs

DES MOINES– The Iowa City West High Trojans are still the reigning Class 4A Champions after a three-game campaign at the Boys State Basketball Tournament in the Wells Fargo Arena.
The team, coached by Steve Bergman, went on a rollercoaster ride, which ended with its second consecutive state tournament trophy, the fifth for the program and the fourth for Bergman.
But it almost didn’t happen.

For the love of it

Ellis honored for 20 years as “The Voice of the Spartans”

SOLON– Don Ellis loves sports. He loves Solon. He especially loves Solon Spartans sports. For 20 years, he’s been the guy sitting next to the official scorekeeper and the scoreboard operator with a microphone in his hand doing the announcing at Solon High School sporting events.

CCA superintendent to retire in June

Dr. Denise Schares announces plans at school board meeting

TIFFIN– Dr. Denise Schares, superintendent of the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) school district announced her pending retirement, effective June 30.
“It’s a transition point, and I think for the district, it’s a good time to bring somebody in on this really, really tremendous opportunity and challenge of enrollment growth,” Schares said.

New class, new trophy, new challenge

Women of Troy return to state tournament after beating City

CEDAR RAPIDS– The West High Women of Troy are going back to the Girls State Basketball Tournament. A decisive 55-42 win over City High Tuesday night at Cedar Rapids Prairie in a Class 5A regional final punched their ticket, and put the ladies on track for their third consecutive tourney appearance.
West led the third meeting this season of the crosstown rivals throughout, edging past 11-10 after the first period and taking a 21-19 lead into the locker room at the half.

Long list of ideas for shortage of space

Facilities committee holds brainstorming session

OXFORD– The facilities committee tasked by the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) School Board of Directors to explore options for dealing with the district’s continued enrollment growth took a major step toward making a recommendation.

To a festive Fat Tuesday and five great years

Augusta Restaurant co-owner Jeri Halperin and Ben Black raise a toast to Mardi Gras on Fat Tuesday, Feb. 12, during the New Orleans-themed restaurant’s sixth annual Mardi Gras party. For more photos of the event, see page 20.

Happy ducks and happier hunters

Conservation group puts the emphasis on local wetlands

SHUEYVILLE– Since 1911, Delta Waterfowl has been committed to preserving the future of waterfowl and waterfowl hunting. For a year now, the Hoosier Bay Chapter has been organizing and making plans for the future of local waterfowl and hunting, specifically in their namesake Hoosier Bay, located south of Ely in the Atherton Wetland.
The group with around 30 members is headquartered in Shueyville and covers a 50-mile radius.

Fighting to a bitter end

Dowling derails Trojan grapplers’ run for State Dual Meet

IOWA CITY– Two “firsts” occurred Wednesday night in the West High gymnasium.
One, the Trojans won’t be going to the state dual meet in Des Moines for the first time in a decade.
The other, the West Des Moines Dowling Maroons will be going for the first time since 1993. The Maroons bested West by one point, winning a Class 3A Regional Dual Meet, 35-34.

Creek’s Murphy places fourth in district meet

Connor Murphy was the only Clear Creek Amana Clipper to advance to a Class 2A District Wrestling Tournament held Saturday, Feb. 9, at Solon High School. Murphy is shown here battling Max Wehage of Vinton-Shellsburg in first round action. The sophomore placed fourth, falling to Wehage in 5:07, and to Jaret Probasco of South Tama in the Third Place match in 1:55.