Muscatine City Council will consider changing how to handle sidewalk repairs during its meeting on Thursday night. On the agenda for the meeting is an authorization request to begin the process of starting a sidewalk program and hiring a project manager for it. Currently the city does not have a sidewalk program and operates on a complaint-based process.


The current driver’s ed program is provided by the Mississippi Bend AEA. This contract is up for renewal. If the school board chooses to renewal this contract the AEA’s new fees will increase driver’s ed from $325 to $370 per student. The school board, Monday night, discussed other options. Communities across Iowa have outsourced driver’s ed to other entities like the local community college or private driver’s ed organizations. Duane Magee, the Director of the Board of Educational Examiners in Des Moines, says this is a state-wide trend for school districts to explore other options for providing driver’s education. The school board will continue to research in order to provide the best combination of quality and value.


The school board also approved a contract for Musco Lighting to replace the street lamps in the high school parking lot. It is noted the Musco is giving the school district a $15,000 discount. The old lights are assumed to be the original lights installed when the high school was built 40 years ago. The technology in lighting has come a long way in 40 years and the new lights will be much less expensive to operate.


The school board also asked the brand new superintendent, Dr. Jerry Riibe, to put together a long-term strategic plan for school improvement which has not previously been in place. Dr. Riibe will present the current state of the school district on October 14th’s regular meeting. School board member, Brenda Garcia, was able to arrange for Brad Buck, the director of Iowa Department of Education to visit Muscatine on November 12th. There will be a breakfast on the 12th, 7:30 AM at the board office on Mulberry.


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