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 Wednesday, July 14.
Tuesday gave us a break from the rain, but a one day break might be all we get. According to the National Weather Service rain, potentially in heavy amounts, is likely to fall in the Cedar Rapids area before Wednesday is done. A 30 percent chance for showers and thunderstorms are predicted for the area starting primarily after 3 p.m. Before that it should be partly sunny with a high near 90 degrees. On Wednesday night it will become windier and mostly cloudy, with a chance of precipitation at 70 percent. Up to 1 to 2 inches of rain could fall in total if conditions align for it.
A transportation commission has established a buffer zone that would allow for the eventual widening of Interstate 380 to six lanes between North Liberty and Cedar Rapids.
The Iowa Transportation Commission on Tuesday approved a Corridor Preservation Zone along I-380. Iowa Department of Transportation district transportation planner Cathy Cutler said the zone helps the DOT work with developers to ensure they don’t build in an area needed to widen the interstate.
Cutler said a section that would widen I-380 near North Liberty is planned for a 2024 start.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a nightmare for university operations and budgets in Iowa, but recent numbers suggest it has been a boon for some researchers.
Both University of Iowa and Iowa State University this week reported new external funding records for the budget year that wrapped June 30.
The University of Iowa — involved in coronavirus vaccine and treatment trials that have benefited the world — reported double-digit percentage spikes in several funding categories, starting with its 23 percent jump in total external funding, from last year’s record-setting $666.2 million to $818 million for fiscal 2021.
Iowa State University — the state’s other top-tier public research campus — soared past its previous total external funding record of $509.2 million in 2018 with a reported $559.1 million in the 2021 budget year. Iowa State also reported a COVID-19 related boost to their funding totals.
A former Cedar Rapids school counselor was convicted Tuesday in federal court on a charge of enticing a 14-year-old student to have sex with her.
46-year-old Miranda Bohlken Breeden, of Monticello, pleaded guilty to one count of enticement of a minor.
During the plea hearing, Breeden admitted that she used a cellphone to entice the 14-year-old boy to engage in an illegal sex act between November 2019 and January 2020. She also admitted that based on the sex act she would have been charged with third-degree sexual abuse in state court.
District officials last September confirmed she was placed on leave Jan. 22 and terminated July 31. She had been employed by the district since Aug. 12, 2019.
The school district confirmed to investigators that Breeden was the counselor for the 14-year-old during the time she was employed.
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