CORONAVIRUS

Coronavirus in Iowa, live updates for May 29: Cedar Rapids Bike Share Program returns this summer

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during her daily COVID-19 news conference at the Emergency Operations Center on Wednesday,
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during her daily COVID-19 news conference at the Emergency Operations Center on Wednesday, May 27, 2020. (Brian Powers/The Des Moines Register)

3:44 P.M.: YMCA METRO REOPENS POOLS FOR LAP SWIM AT TWO BRANCHES MONDAY

Cedar Rapids Metro YMCA announced that it will open pools Monday at the Helen G. Nassif and Marion locations for lap swimming only. The move is a product of Gov. Kim Reynolds’ decision to lift restrictions on swimming pools.

Both pools will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. during weekdays and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Swimmers younger than 15 years old are still not permitted. Members are required to reserve a lap lane, which will be limited to one per lane for 45-minute periods. Reservations are available on the quarter of each hour.

Lanes can be reserved by calling HGN at (319) 366-6421 and the Marion branch at (319) 377-7361.

Locker rooms and showers are not available. Staff will continue to monitor and evaluate pool rules as branches reopen. For more reopening information, visit the Metro YMCA website.

1:07 p.m.: GRASSLEY RESUMED Q&A MEETINGS

Iowa U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley has resumed his annual 99 County Meetings this week. Grassley started his 40th year of question-and-answer meetings in each Iowa county in February and suspended them during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Grassley took questions in Guttenberg, Postville, Decorah, Rockwell City, Emmetsburg and Pocahontas this week.

“While I had to take a brief pause this year because of the pandemic, it was time to move forward in a safe and responsible way,” Grassley said. “The meetings may have looked a little different, but the format remained the same: Iowans set the agenda.

“I always appreciate the opportunity to meet with Iowans face to face and respond to their questions. I’ll continue to bring their voices to the policymaking tables in Washington (D.C.). I look forward to holding more question-and-answer sessions and completing my 40th annual 99 county meetings.”

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Following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the state of Iowa, Grassley’s latest meetings had a 10-person limit. Participants were also encouraged to wear face masks or coverings and were required to follow all social distancing guidelines.

10:25 A.M.: OLIVET MISSION NEEDS TOWELS

Olivet Mission of Cedar Rapids is seeking help with supplies, including old towels that can be made into rags. According to Director Julie Palmer, resources have almost been depleted due to increased cleaning in the months during the Covid-19 pandemic. Donations can be made Tuesday through Friday from 8:30-11:30 a.m. and Saturdays from 9-11:30 a.m. For more information, visit the Olivet Mission website or its Facebook page.

10:09 A.M.: SALVATION ARMY OFFERS BOX FANS

The Salvation Army of Linn County will begin scheduling appointments via phone Monday for those in need of box fans, while supplies last. There is a limit of one fan per household and individuals must present picture identification card issued by Iowa. Anyone who has received a fan from The Salvation Army in the past is ineligible.

If you are interested in making an appointment, call (319) 364-9131. More than 200 fans were distributed to households through the program last year.

Donations are still being accepted to purchase fans and can be mailed to 1000 C Ave. NW in Cedar Rapids. Credit card donations can be made by calling (319) 364-9131 to make a credit card donation.

9:20 A.M.: Q CASINO SET TO REOPEN MONDAY

Q Casino in Dubuque announced Friday that it will reopen Monday at 8 a.m., pending final approval by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission.

In an attempt to follow state guidelines, amenities will be limited. The casino will be open from 7-3 a.m. daily. Staff will used the short early-morning closure for thorough cleaning.

“As operations resume, the safety and well-being of both guests and team members remains the first and most important priority,” Q Casino Vice President and General Manager Brian Rakestraw said in the news release. “As we comply with local, state and federal guidelines, updated information will be continual communicated. Listed below are the most recent protocols being set as standards for current operations.”

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Safety measures include: * — Team members will be trained in sanitation and safety protocols before returning to work.

* — Team members will be completing a Covid-19 exposure assessment before each shift.

* — Team members who are within 6 foot of guests will be wearing masks.

* — Guests are strongly encouraged to bring their own masks when visiting the facility and wear them as much as possible. A limited supply of disposable masks will be available on site.

* — Distancing between gaming equipment will be six feet, restaurant seating areas as well as capacity restrictions will be adhered to as directed by the State of Iowa.

* — The frequency of cleaning of gaming equipment and high touch areas will be increased.

* — Air filtration systems in all areas of the casino will bring in the maximum amount of outside air to provide the highest quality air possible.

Updated information is available at the Q Casino website.

CEDAR RAPIDS BIKE SHARE PROGRAM WILL RETURN

The City of Cedar Rapids announced that its Bike Share Program will return this summer. Bikes and scooters should begun to be available in June, according to a news release Friday.

The program offers 150 electric-assist bikes and 70 electric scooters located at 90 bike racks throughout the downtown and surrounding areas. More than 29,000 total rides by more than 5,000 users recorded from May to November last year.

Plans are in place for program vendor, VeoRide, to disinfect the bikes an average of twice a day. Riders are encouraged to practice good hygiene practices, including hand washing, avoid touching their face and use hand sanitizer.

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“We recognize the value in offering additional transportation options to residents, as well as a healthy outlet for physical fitness and activity,” Assistant Director of Community Development Bill Micheel said in the news release. “Last year’s pilot program was extremely successful, and we look forward to offering this service again this year.”

Items are available through the VeoRide app. The cost for the service is a dollar to unlock the bike and 15 cents per minute of use.

To use Bike Share, riders must download the app, create an account, scan the QR code or enter the ID number of the bike and scooter, park in one of the racks, lock up the bike or click “end ride” on scooters and complete payment via the app,

Comments: (319) 368-8679; kj.pilcher@thegazette.com

 

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