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Extension Outreach: Winter energy costs and utility bill reminders

This week I am featuring the latest article from Carol Ehlers, human science specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, “Winter Energy Costs and Utility Bill Reminders.”

Faced with inflation and rising energy costs, many households may struggle to pay their utility bills. Whether you are a homeowner or renter, it is important to get a good handle on how much to budget each month to cover your various utility bills.

One Man’s Perspective: Let me introduce you to Illinois’ Super Mayor

Tuesday, I wrote about the “Queen of the Court.”

Today, I share my thoughts about the Queen of Dolton who I’m sure you will find far less humble and far more vindictive.

Letter to the Editor

It seems that each day there is a new kerfuffle going on in either the Iowa Legislature or the Congress of the United States. A recent example is the debate now going on in Des Moines, in which one side is advocating keeping in place the provision that state committees and/or commissions must have an equal number of appointed males and females.

Guest Commentary: The Taxpayer Relief Fund

What is the taxpayer relief fund?

Pastor’s Column: Self-reliance

The enemy of spiritual growth is self reliance. This is a major theme found in Christ’s teachings.

The CommStock Report: Time is of the essence and the clock is ticking

It has been a theme of recent CommStock reports to inform subscribers that the agriculture economy is heading toward another crisis brought on by our enormous productivity that can be avoided if opportunities are taken to grow demand. We are heading toward 3 billion-bushel corn carryovers, $3 corn and subsisting on taxpayer subsidies again if immediate decisions are not made to grow demand to consume our surplus stocks.

Lawn & Garden: Starting plants from seeds indoors

Keep your green thumb in shape this winter while getting a jump on the growing season by starting your favorite or hard-to-find plants indoors. It’s fun, simpler than you think, and can help stretch your plant budget.

One Man’s Perspective: Celebrating the Queen of the Court

Last week, Caitlin Clark did it.

In spite of the haters, naysayers and people who find it necessary to try and tear any good thing down — Clark broke the women’s all-time college basketball scoring record Thursday — at least the recorded record — surpassing Kelsey Plum’s 3,527 mark with the first eight points for the No. 4 Hawkeyes against Michigan in less than three minutes.

Letter to the Editor:​​​​​​​ Are greenhouses gasses bad?

Are greenhouses gasses bad? Is oxygen a pollutant? We know that oxygen is essential for life. So, if the answer to: "Is oxygen a pollutant?" is no, then carbon dioxide is not and cannot be a pollutant as well. Oxygen is produced by plants. To thrive plants need water, soil nutrients, sunlight and carbon dioxide. Some would suggest we need to reduce the carbon dioxide (plant food) in the air. Some say greenhouse gasses are bad.

Letter to the Editor: Finney column

Contributions from Daniel P. Finney (Why requiring the national anthem in Iowa schools isn't enough), although delivered in a tone of irony that many of your readers might not grasp, certainly enhances the quality of your editorial page.

Letter to the Editor: Restoring local control — Why HF2442 falls short

In 2023, the passing of HF 718 dealt a heavy blow to local communities by eliminating local levies and stripping away the right for communities to resource their values. While HF2442 appears to be a step in the right direction, it fails to address crucial issues and falls short of providing a comprehensive solution for the 97 library levies lost as well as the many other levy supported services across the state of Iowa.

Extension Outreach: Tax prep season

We will be kicking off our office’s third VITA tax prep season on Feb. 27. Our schedule is steadily filling up, so if you or someone you know is eligible for the VITA program, please encourage them to call our office at 712-262-2264. The VITA program provides free tax preparation as well as electronic filing and is available to low-to-moderate income Iowans.

Guest Commentary: The border crisis: Humanitarian or dehumanizing

I have long been a proponent of ensuring our border is secure. I have been told that is not a very humanitarian stance to take. I have even been told that it isn’t a Christian stance. While migrants flock over our border illegally by the thousands each day, our country is bombarded with the many problems associated with people coming unchecked through our borders.

Guest Commentary: My work to protect our country from China

China poses the greatest threat to America’s economic and national security.

Guest Commentary: School security bill protects kids, gives options to school districts

Keeping students safe in schools is a top priority.

This week, the Public Safety Committee advanced House Study Bill 675 to ensure students have the protection they deserve.

HSB 675 has two parts, the first addresses the need for school resources officers inside buildings and the second creates a professional weapons permit and with extensive training for school employees.

Pastor’s Column: It’s time for a heart exam

February is American Heart Month. Heart disease has been the leading cause of death in the U.S. since 1950. Regular exams are encouraged. I have thanked the Lord often when praying for a patient at our local hospital while serving in the volunteer chaplaincy program.

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