Metro Briefs

BY DI STAFF | DECEMBER 14, 2012 6:30 AM

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Man faces drug charges

An Iowa City man has been accused of possessing marijuana and related paraphernalia in his apartment.

According to two Iowa City police complaints, Ricky Garner, 20, was charged Nov. 19.
Officers arrived at Garner’s apartment to speak with him about an unrelated investigation. When they knocked on his front door, he allegedly attempted to hide a marijuana bong near a TV, the complaints said.

When Garner spoke with the officers, they identified a strong marijuana odor inside the apartment. After Garner became uncooperative with officers, the residence was secured while the officers applied for a search warrant.

Upon receiving the warrant, officers searched the apartment and reportedly  located a large quantity of marijuana, marijuana paraphernalia, a drug ledger, and approximately $4,590, the complaints said.

Garner later admitted to selling large quantities of drugs and admitted to having drugs and money hidden in the apartment.

A controlled-substance violation is a Class-D felony.

Possession of a controlled substance in a structure or vehicle is an aggravated misdemeanor, punishable up to two years in prison with a maximum fine of $6,250.

— by Quentin Misiag 

Search for communication VP to begin next year

The search for a new vice president for Strategic Communication at the University of Iowa will begin after the new year, according to a UI press release.

The position, which will be left vacant by current Vice President Tysen Kendig, administers university communication and marketing.

According to the press release, the search committee for the position is still being assembled.

“We have made tremendous strides in more aggressively promoting the profound impact that the University of Iowa is making on Iowa and the world, and I intend for that great momentum to continue,” UI President Sally Mason said in the release.

Kendig accepted a job in a similar position at the University of Connecticut. There he will oversee UConn’s Office of University Communications, beginning in mid-January.

Mark Braun, the chief of staff for the Office of the President, will serve as interim vice president for Strategic Communication, effective Jan. 3.

— by Kristen East

IC noted for high volunteer rate

Iowa City has been recognized as having one of the highest volunteer rates in the country, according to recent data collected by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Iowa City ranks third among 75 mid-sized city in the county, having a volunteer rate of 49.1 percent. This equates to roughly 58 volunteer hours per resident.

The report indicates that 32 percent of volunteer efforts were for educational purposes, followed by 26 percent who volunteered for religious organizations, and 16 percent volunteering for health organizations.

The report also shows that the volunteer rate national is at its highest level in five years.

Additionally, 64.3 million Americans volunteered in an organization this year.

— by Kristen East

Downtown District seeks budget OK

The Iowa City Downtown District will ask the city to approve its fiscal 2014 budget and incorporate those figures into the city’s respective budgets.

The Iowa City City Council will consider a motion at its meeting on Dec. 18 to accept the Downtown District’s fiscal 2013 and 2014 budgets.

The district’s proposed fiscal 2014 operating budget is $517,616. Officials expect $494,720 in expenses, and $22,896 to be carried forward.

The district operated on a budget of $537,238 in fiscal 2013. Among its expenditures, the district spent $127,213 on events and $133,850 on marketing.

— by Kristen East

Man faces drug charge

An Iowa City man has been accused of possessing more than 100 grams of marijuana missing the drug tax stamp.

According to two Iowa City police complaints, Romario Cardoza, 22, 4494 Taft Ave. S.E. lot C11, was charged Aug. 9.

Members of the Johnson County Drug Task Force acted as undercover agents in meeting with Cardoza, reportedly  to arrange a narcotics transaction. Four ounces of marijuana was delivered to the undercover agents. Later testing reportedly confirmed a total combined weight of 110.29 grams.

By law, this amount of marijuana requires a drug tax stamp to be affixed. No stamp was attached.

A controlled-substance violation and possession or distribution of a drug without a drug tax stamp are Class-D felonies, each punishable up to five years in prison with a maximum fine of $7,500.

— by Quentin Misiag 

2 charged with credit-card fraud

Two men have been accused of knowingly using a stolen credit card to make more than $1,500 in purchases at a Coralville department store.

According to a Coralville police complaint, Ousmane Diaby, 35, address unknown, and Mahamadou Djallo, 37, address unknown, were charged Wednesday.

Diaby and Djallo allegedly used a stolen credit card in the name of Calvin W. Chelston at the Coral Ridge Mall Dillard’s for purchases in excess of $1,500.

Additional cards have also been recovered, the complaint said.

Falsifying use of a financial institution is Class-D felony, punishable up to five years in prison with a maximum fine of $7,500.

— by Quentin Misiag 

Council to vote on taxi rules

The Iowa City City Council will vote on the final consideration of an ordinance regulating taxis at the next council meeting, Dec. 18.

The proposed changes would include requiring a distinctive color scheme per taxi company, changing the date when licenses must be acquired to June 1, and requiring the location of the dispatch office to be in the Iowa City or Coralville City limits.

An ordinance requires three readings to pass. The previous considerations passed 7-0 and 6-1 despite opposition from several community members during public discussion. Councilor Jim Throgmorton opposed the measure at its most recent reading.

— by Nick Hassett

Council to cluck along

Two resolutions related to urban chickens will be considered by the Iowa City City Council at its Dec. 18 meeting.

The first resolution would create a permit system for urban chickens. A permit would last for three years and would outline requirements for the coops and pens.

The second resolution would adopt an urban-chicken policy, setting the number of chickens allowed (four) and including the provision that no permit would be issued without consent of the neighbors, referred to as a “veto” provision in council discussions.

City staff has emphasized that urban chickens are not legal until the policy has been developed.

— by Nick Hassett

Council to consider School District resolution

The Iowa City City Council will consider a resolution at its next meeting recommending a shared vision for the development of the Iowa City School District.

City staff has proposed that the School District prioritize capital spending to bring all existing facilities to the standards of recently constructed facilities and that the School District construct two new elementary schools within the corporate limits of Iowa City. This, the staff wrote, would benefit both the city and the School District.

If school officials decide to consider a third high school, it must not cause harm to the facilities, enrollment practices, or course offerings of existing city high schools, according to city documents.

City Manager Tom Markus and Mayor Matt Hayek are expected to meet with School District officials to discuss shared objectives prior to the board submitting the Revenue Purpose Statement.

— by Kristen East

City wants list of developers narrowed

City staff recommends that the Iowa City City Council narrow the number of finalists for the development at the intersection of College and Gilbert Streets.

Currently, five development teams have proposals before the City Council. City councilors will likely select their top two or three development proposals in order for city staff to begin negotiating a development agreement.

The public weighed in on the proposals at the last City Council meeting, Dec. 4.

The five finalists for the development site include Sherman Associates, Chauncey Gardens, the Chauncey, 4 Zero 4, and Ryan Companies/Iceberg Development.

— by Kristen East

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