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 Saturday, September 11, and Sunday, September 12.
We are in a hot to cool to back to hot again cycle. This weekend falls squarely under the hot again category.
According to the National Weather Service there will be a high of 94 degrees in the Cedar Rapids area, with mostly sunny skies and a moderate wind of 10 to 15 mph. On Saturday night it will be partly cloudy, with a low around 69 degrees. On Sunday it will be mostly sunny again, with a high near 90 degrees. On Sunday night there is predicted to be a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms, but otherwise it will be mostly cloudy, with a low around 63 degrees.
As a result of an increased number of patients — partially driven by a surge in COVID-19 admissions — Cedar Rapids hospitals are limiting elective surgeries and procedures.
Both UnityPoint Health-St. Luke’s Hospital and Mercy Medical Center confirmed Friday their facilities are preserving capacity because of high patient counts in recent weeks.
St. Luke’s is limiting surgeries that require an inpatient hospital stay to 10 surgeries per day.
Elective surgery is a procedure scheduled in advance because it does not involve a medical emergency.
Enrollment across all three of Iowa’s public universities dropped again this fall, according to new numbers made public Thursday, showing a slide beginning in fall 2017 and worsening when COVID-19 upended the higher education experience.
The University of Iowa reported a total enrollment this fall of 29,909 students — down 539, or 2 percent, from last fall’s 30,448. It’s down 7 percent from 2017’s 32,323.
Iowa State University reported a total enrollment of 30,708 students — down 1,117, or 4 percent, from last fall’s 31,825. It’s down 15 percent from 2017’s 35,993.
And the University of Northern Iowa reported a total enrollment of 9,231 students — down 291, or 3 percent, from last fall’s 9,522. It’s down 22 percent from 2017’s 11,907.
Speaking to Iowa’s growing need for affordable housing to help meet workforce demands, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Wednesday a $100 million infusion to increase the state’s housing stock and protect Iowans’ ability to live in or near the communities where they work.
That allocation — made possible through the American Rescue Plan pandemic relief act and local fiscal relief funds — will add to the $230 million over five years the Iowa Legislature already passed earlier this year to help overcome the state’s housing shortage.
While Iowa today is in a “strong economic position” after the shock of 2020, Reynolds said, the state needs more “high-quality attainable housing” if it’s to keep up with its employment opportunities. Specifically, Iowa is expected to need another 47,000 homes by 2030 — including 10,586 for Iowans earning $38,450 a year or less.