116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
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This is Stephen Schmidt from the Gazette digital news desk and I’m here with your update for Tuesday July 13.
If you have something you absolutely must do without a chance for rain Tuesday is looking like your best shot before the end of the week rolls around. According to the National Weather Service it will be mostly sunny in the Cedar Rapids area with a high near 85 degrees. A southwest wind will blow from 5 to 10 mph. Tuesday night will also be mostly clear, with a low around 67 degrees.
Drought conditions persist in some parts of Iowa, but substantial weekend rainstorms “took the edge off” concerns over developing corn and soybean crops, state officials said Monday. In fact, some parts of Iowa got more rain over the weekend than they did during the entire month of May.
State Climatologist Justin Glisan said a majority of Iowa’s reporting stations observed above-average rainfall, with parts of southern Iowa measuring amounts from 1 to 3 inches above average.
Weekly precipitation totals in inches ranged from 0.14 at Waterloo to 4.8 in Adair County. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 1.89 inches, while the normal is about 0.8.
More rain is expected later this week.
Iowans later this week will have access to free, at-home COVID-19 testing kits as state officials begin transitioning its Test Iowa program to a self-administered model.
With these kits, Iowans can collect their own saliva and mail the sample directly to the State Hygienic Lab for testing, the Iowa Department of Public Health announced Monday. Results will be emailed to participants with 24 hours after it is received by the state lab.
These kits, available this coming Friday, can be sent directly to a participant’s home for free or picked up from a designated site.
State officials said the Test Iowa website will be updated “to facilitate the process for requesting test kits and will feature a test kit site locator tool.” It will include a list of approximately 125 pickup sites across the state.
According to the Associated Press, agreements released Monday show Iowa is donating the use of state troopers and their equipment at “no cost to Texas” to pitch in along the U.S. border with Mexico.
The agreements show Iowa troopers, members of an Iowa State Patrol tactical team that responds to high-risk situations, command staff and an investigator will be part of the deployment. The total number is redacted from the documents, but Iowa officials have said previously they expect to send 25 to 30 officers from the Iowa Department of Public Safety for a two-week mission this month.
The smaller of two utility-scale solar energy projects being proposed in Linn County has formally applied for permission to build a 640-acre facility nearly 3 miles west of Coggon and supply enough electricity to meet the needs of over 16,000 homes on average.
Coggon Solar LLC, a partnership between Clenera and Central Iowa Power Cooperative, filed an application last Friday, the county announced Monday. I approved and built, the plan calls for generating 100 megawatts, for 35 years. Coggon Solar already has signed long-term leases with property owners to obtain the land required for the project, the application states. The land use now is farming.
The Iowa Ideas 2021 virtual conference will be here before you know it, and we would like you to be our guest on the house. The Gazette is providing free access to this two-day gathering with more than 50 sessions- filled with thought-provoking local, and national speakers-- all ready to engage you on a variety of important and timely Iowa-issues. Join us October 14th and 15th for this can’t miss, idea-exchange experience. Learn more and register for the event at iowaideas.com