Friday Morning Read: New 'acting' Lt. Gov., selling fireworks, affordable housing tour
Selling fireworks - A Marion man looking to sell fireworks out of a Marion building ran into difficulties this week, mainly because the state permit allowing him to pursue those sales isn’t yet available. Joe Zalesky and his two partners have sold fireworks out of a tent in Missouri for several years. He was eagerly awaiting the Iowa law, recently signed by former Gov. Terry Branstad, that legalizes the sale of consumer fireworks in Iowa between June 1 and July 8 and between Dec. 10 and Jan. 3. Read more about what Zalesky and his partners are trying to do here.
New Lieutenant - Hoping to head off a legal challenge, Gov. Kim Reynolds on Thursday appointed state Public Defender Adam Gregg to be her acting lieutenant governor — a hybrid capacity that makes him a “full partner” in her administration but leaves him out of the line of constitutional succession. Gregg, 34, of Johnston, called Reynolds’ selection of him “the honor of a lifetime,” while the governor said it removes a distraction and allows her new team to focus on creating “a better Iowa.” Read more from Gregg and Reynolds about the selection here.
Iowa Advances - The game was billed as a matchup between the Big Ten Pitcher of the Year and the Big Ten Player of the Year. Those two didn’t meet their regular-season standards, but the Iowa and Maryland baseball teams produced plenty of drama anyway in the first round of the Big Ten tournament Thursday in Bloomington, Ind. Matt Hoeg’s sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth scored Tyler Cropley, and the Hawkeyes advanced to the winners’ bracket of the double-elimination tournament with a 9-8 victory. Read more about what is next for Iowa in the tournament here.
Affordable Housing - As residents and communities leaders have wrestled with whether to build an affording housing apartment complex, with five apartments reserved for the homeless, in the northwest quadrant, housing advocates tried to dispel negative stereotypes about low-income housing during bus tours Thursday. Policymakers and affordable housing supporters toured duplexes, single-family homes with front porches and pointed peaks, and multimillion dollar apartment complexes with brick-sided facades. Read reactions to the affordable housing proposal and tour here.
Quotable - “Our social media is very much geared to adults who live in the city,” Johnson said. “My team has a good age range of people, but really in order to find information teens are interested in and young adults are interested in, we reached out to (Iowa BIG) and proposed this idea.” Read more about how Iowa BIG is taking control of the city's social media channels here.