Questions arise about turkey hunting in Riverdale.

Questions arise about turkey hunting in Riverdale.

There were questions raised at the Mayor’s Town Hall meeting on September 23rd concerning hunting practices in the City. Specifically, someone wanted to know if people were authorized to hunt turkeys in Riverdale.

The simple answer is “no.”

As we reported on the website a few weeks ago, the City has authorized a limited deer hunt in Riverdale to start on September 16th and run through January 12th. The vendor authorized to conduct the hunt, Kingsley Wildlife Management, was restricted to bow hunting for deer and coyote at least 100 yards from any building or occupied property.

The action taken by the City Council was noted in the approved minutes (available here on the City’s website) as follows:

The action taken by the City Council does not permit turkey hunting of any kind. In addition to that, the only person authorized to hunt deer in Riverdale is Kingsley Wildlife Management and anyone else who wants to hunt deer in Riverdale has to work through Steve Kingsley (and, if necessary, appropriate property owners).

Hunting resolutions are an annual affair in Riverdale. And, as a result, citizens with concerns or offering other ideas for consideration by the City Council are encouraged to bring them forward so they can be included in future conversations as they relate to the 2019-20 hunt which will begin sometime in September of 2019.

Show your colors by supporting the Riverdale Fire Department’s “thin red line”.

Show your colors by supporting the Riverdale Fire Department’s “thin red line”.

The Riverdale Fire Department is selling thin red line shirts to the public!

Show your support for the RFD by purchasing one or more of these custom-made t-shirts. Short and long sleeved versions are available in sizes from Youth to 5XL.

Short sleeved shirts are $15 each and long sleeved versions are $18 each. There are additional charges for each size above 2XL (see the web page for details).

The deadline to order is October 19th!  

You will be able to pick up your t-shirts at the station after the sale has ended.

National Wireless Alert (NWA) System test scheduled for Thursday has been re-scheduled.

National Wireless Alert (NWA) System test scheduled for Thursday has been re-scheduled.

FEMA, in cooperation with the FCC, had planned to conduct a national test of the Wireless Emergency Alert System (WEA) and Emergency Alert System (EAS) on September 20, 2018 at 2:18 pm EDT and 2:20 pm EDT, respectively.  The test has now been re-scheduled to Thursday, October 3, 2018 at the same time. (Click here for more details.)  According to the FEMA website, this is because of the on-going response to Hurricane Florence in North and South Carolina.

The test will assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed.

The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones that are connected to wireless providers participating in WEA. This is the fourth EAS nationwide test and the first national WEA test. Previous EAS national tests were conducted in November 2011, September 2016,  and September 2017 in collaboration with the FCC, broadcasters, and emergency management officials in recognition of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month.

The EAS is a national public warning system that provides the President with the communications capability to address the nation during a national emergency. The test is made available to EAS participants (i.e., radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers) and is scheduled to last approximately one minute. The test message will be similar to regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar. The EAS message will include a reference to the WEA test:

“THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcast and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission, and local authorities to keep you informed in the event of an emergency. If this had been an actual emergency an official message would have followed the tone alert you heard at the start of this message. A similar wireless emergency alert test message has been sent to all cell phones nationwide. Some cell phones will receive the message; others will not. No action is required.”

The WEA test will likely show up on cell phones accepting government alerts as “Presidential Alert.”

Click here for the original announcement of the 09/20/18 test.

Special city proclamation designates September 11th as “First Responder Day” in Riverdale

Special city proclamation designates September 11th as “First Responder Day” in Riverdale

At the September 11, 2018 City Council Meeting, Mayor Mike Bawden asked those present to observe a moment of silence in remembrance of those lost in terrorist attacks in New York City, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania seventeen years earlier. He then presented the following proclamation:

Whereas          On a sunny morning in New York City seventeen years ago, the world looked on in horror as hijackers took control of two passenger jets and attacked the World Trade Center towers; and

 

Whereas          That same day, more hijackers took control of two other passenger jets, one striking the Pentagon in Washington, DC and another jet, presumably heading for a target in Washington, was forced to crash into a field in Pennsylvania; and

 

Whereas          First responders from New York, New Jersey and across the region immediately sprung into action to save lives and keep people safe, with many of these brave souls making the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty; and

 

Whereas          Even after the events of the day had shocked us all, we continued to watch in awe for months as these first responders and other from across the nation – police, fire, emergency medical personnel and others – continued in the service of others as their attempts to rescue victims of terrorism eventually turned to recovery; and

 

Whereas          The date of the attack, September 11, coincidentally shares the same numerical formula as the national standard for calling help from a community’s first responders, 9-1-1; then

 

Therefore        be it resolved that I, Michael Bawden, Mayor of the City of Riverdale, ask the citizens of our City to pause and reflect today on the sacrifices made then and every time a first responder answers a call for help from someone in their most urgent times of need.

 

Let today, and every September 11thbe known as

 

FIRST RESPONDER DAY in Riverdale, Iowa

IN WITNESS WHEREOF,
Michael Bawden, Mayor
City of Riverdale

A signed copy of the proclamation can be viewed by clicking here.

 

Riverdale Fire Department takes 1st place in Iowa Firefighters’ Convention Competition

Riverdale Fire Department takes 1st place in Iowa Firefighters’ Convention Competition

A four-man team from Riverdale captured first place in this year’s Water Application Drill at the 2018 Iowa Firefighters’ Association Convention held in Waverly, Iowa this past weekend. The team of Randy, Bruce and Phillip Bowers along with Adrian Castillo earned enough points with the win to place the RFD in a tie for 5th place over-all among all the departments competing from throughout the state.

Riverdale’s water-fighting warriors show off their 1st place plaque (now in its new home in the Riverdale fire station).

Riverdale’s fire chief, Floyd Bruns was there to coach them along and also competed.

The event is an annual affair for the IFA. Competitors in this year’s skills contests also had to deal with approximately eight inches of rain that turned the 40-acre field into a giant mud pit. But the nearly 2,000 firefighters who attended didn’t seem to mind, with almost everyone hitching rides on tractors and ATV’s provided by area farmers to help make the event a success.

A news report from KWWL-TV will give you some idea of the conditions:

KWWL – Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Back in Riverdale, Mayor Mike Bawden said he intends to recognize the RFD’s outstanding performance at Tuesday’s meeting of the City Council. “It seems appropriate, that as we remember and thank all first responders on September 11th, we also celebrate the strong spirit and fellowship exhibited by our very own fire department,” he said. “The Riverdale Fire Department has been a well-deserved point of pride in our community and I look forward to seeing it continue to be so.”

To read the Mayoral Proclamation congratulating the RFD team on their 1st place finish, click here.

Concerned about the weather? Subscribe to weather alerts.

Concerned about the weather? Subscribe to weather alerts.

(from the Scott County EMA website)

Scott County is part of the State of Iowa alert system called Alert Iowa.

What is Alert Iowa?

Alert Iowa is a county/statewide mass notification and emergency messaging system which can be used by state and local authorities to quickly disseminate emergency information to residents in counties that utilize the system.

This system will be used as an emergency notification system during all hazard and life-safety events.

If you sign up through your community website you will receive messages via landline or wireless phone, text messaging, email, fax, TDD/TYY, and social media.

The system is available, free of charge, to all citizens in Scott County and we encourage everyone to register at least one contact method.

Alert messages may contain photo, video and audio attachments to help subscribers better understand the situation at hand, or where to find additional information.

These messages will normally be specific to your community or the communities for which you register. However, if you sign up through the Scott County website and do not choose any specific community, you will receive only warnings and information specific to the County as a whole and not your specific community.

Once you have registered your information will be automatically entered into the system and you will receive any notices sent out.

Nevertheless, should you decide you no longer wish to receive messages, you can opt-out of the system by sending an e-mail or letter to Scott County EMA at 1100 E. 46th Street, Davenport, IA 52807 or scema@msn.com with your name address and phone number you registered.  The process to add or remove contact information may take 24 to 72 hours.

This system is powered by the Wireless Emergency Notification System (WENS) and the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS), and in Scott County is under the control of the Scott County Emergency Management Agency.

For additional information on Alert Iowa/WENS you can contact Dave Donovan at 563-484-3050 with the Scott County EMA office.

RFD Strategic Plan moves forward with a trip to Tipton, IA

RFD Strategic Plan moves forward with a trip to Tipton, IA

 

Council Member Paul DCamp, City Administrator Tim Long, City Clerk Ron Fullerlove and George Miller, a member of the Riverdale Fire Department spent time with the leadership team of the Tipton (Iowa) Volunteer Fire Department earlier this month as part of an on-going, fact-finding effort that will inform the City’s efforts to craft a long-term strategic plan for the Riverdale Fire Department.

Council Member DCamp’s notes from the trip are quoted below:

Tipton City Visit On Tuesday, August 21st
Riverdale City Administrator Long, City Clerk Ron Fullerlove, Firefighter George Miller, and Councilman Paul DCamp visited with several members ofTipton city administration and Tipton Fire Department to discuss matters of common interest. The meeting focused on the following topics:

1) Comparison of call dispatch and the distribution of calls in versus out of district.
2) Comparison of department certifications and calls we’re equipped to handle.
3) Comparison of equipment obsolescence and replacement schedules.
4) Discussion of Riverdale’s mutual aid agreements, 28E, and possibilities of recouping costs.
5) Some discussion of utility of the 100 foot platform. There was some agreement that this equipment provides capabilities above most small cities, and would provide benefit almost exclusively to the Arconic plant, in the case of a fire event calling for its capabilities. Otherwise, the training and equipment provided is necessary to fully support residents of Riverdale.
6) Suggestions for sustainably funding Riverdale into the future:
• Make sure we cycle equipment incrementally, consistently with a regular replacement schedule.
• Work with Arconic and other major service benefactors to provide grants.
• Work with other cities in our mutual aid area to address imbalance of service vs funding.
• Possibly investigate other special arrangements with Bettendorf, or other neighboring city for maintaining and funding the Riverdale Fire Department.

What’s Next?

According to Mayor Mike Bawden, the City will continue to conduct research on how other departments operate, how charitable organizations tied to Fire Departments enhance the departments’ operations and finances, the needs of commercial and educational locations within reach of the RFD and the training standards, capabilities and resources available to the volunteers currently serving in the department.

All of the information collected will be reviewed with the leadership of the RFD and used in a collaborative planning process that will help set the long-term, future direction for the department and better define the financial and other resource needs the City will be expected to supply.

The plan is to have the plan completed by the end of the calendar year.

Crime Prevention Task Force holds first meeting

Crime Prevention Task Force holds first meeting

 

A half dozen concerned residents showed up for the first meeting of the City of Riverdale’s Crime Prevention Task Force at 3pm on Friday, August 31st. The task force was convened in response to auto break-ins and an auto theft on August 11.

The task force’s job: to learn more about the nature of the threats facing Riverdale’s neighborhoods, discuss possible solutions, conduct research (if needed) and formulate a series of recommendations for consideration by the Riverdale City Council.

Council member DCamp spent part of the first meeting reviewing notes from a presentation made by Sheriff Tim Lane to the City Council at last Tuesday’s meeting. (Those notes can be viewed by clicking here. A summary of Sheriff Lane’s presentation can also be viewed by clicking here.)

Among the various suggestions made by the group was establishing a Neighborhood Watch Program and a city-wide messaging system that would allow certain individuals the ability to send group text messages to residents about suspicious activities and impending severe weather emergencies.

Mayor Bawden will also reach out to Davenport’s Mayor Klipsch about that city’s efforts to address criminal juvenile behavior (the Quad-City Times reported on Mayor Klipsch’s most recent public meeting on the issue) and to state legislators about what actions might be taken in Des Moines to allow local law enforcement to deal more effectively with the juveniles perpetrating most of these crimes.

Minutes of the task force meeting will be posted as soon as they become available.

Initial recommendations that will be explored in more detail will be posted as soon as they become available.

Next Task Force Meeting

The next meeting of the Crime Prevention Task Force will be set once the initial research project (determining interest in setting up a Neighborhood Watch program and implementing a city-wide, text-messaging alert system) is complete.

Sheriff Tim Lane addresses City’s crime concerns

Sheriff Tim Lane addresses City’s crime concerns

Scott County Sheriff, Tim Lane, attended the Riverdale City Council Meeting on August 28, 2018 and provided an overview of the size and scope of the juvenile crime problem that reached into the City last August 11th, when several cars were broken into and one car was stolen from in front of a residence on Manor Drive. Sheriff Lane offered a sobering assessment that caught many of those present off guard – both citizens and City officials.

According to Sheriff Lane, the juvenile crime problem in Scott County is growing dramatically. So far in 2018 (through the first three and a half weeks of August), over 600 cars have been reported stolen compared to around 800 cars stolen in all of 2017 and 517 in 2016. But that wasn’t the end of the bad news.

“The problem is getting worse,” Sheriff Lane said. “These juveniles are extremely violent.”

The county’s chief law enforcement officer told the Council that he’s seen surveillance footage of these youths pulling guns and entering homes they knew (or at least thought they knew) were occupied.

So, just how do these young criminals get their weapons? “The guns are taken from the cars they steal, left there by their owners,” Sheriff Lane explained.

There are an estimated 100 kids involved in this local crime spree. And as the Sheriff explained, many of them view breaking into and stealing cars as a kind of competition – often taking pride in running the stolen vehicles into each other, into parked cars or into innocent people.

Sheriff Lane also explained that there is not a “preferred time” for these crimes to occur. Police departments and the Sheriff’s office have reports of vehicles being broken into and stolen at all hours of the day. As the young assailants get more and more bold and gain access to weapons, Sheriff Lane expressed his concern that car thefts could eventually turn into car-jackings.

“People have to be careful,” he explained, “especially as cold weather sets in … Don’t leave your car running outside to warm up. Don’t leave your car unlocked. And even when you’re filling up with gas at the pump, don’t leave your keys in the car.”

What can be done?

Council members asked the Sheriff what can be done to make Riverdale residents safer in light of the ever-increasing rate of car thefts and the possible for more violent behavior from these juveniles – ranging in age from 9 years to 18 years of age. He offered the following tips:

  1. Spread the word about what’s happening and the simple prevention steps that you can take to keep you from being an “easy target” of this kind of crime;
  2. Buy and install a home security system – even if that system is as simple as having a noisy dog, a little prevention goes a long way.
  3. Watch out for each other – a neighborhood watch program can be very effective at protecting your home as well as your neighbors’.

A complete summary of Sheriff Lane’s presentation to the Riverdale City Council (prepared by Council Member Paul DCamp) can be viewed here.

We also encourage you to participate in the City’s Crime Prevention Task Force which held its first meeting on Friday, August 31st at 3pm.

Crime Prevention Task Force meeting set for 3pm on Friday, August 31

Crime Prevention Task Force meeting set for 3pm on Friday, August 31

 

An open public meeting has been scheduled to discuss neighborhood security issues following the break-ins and theft of a car from the hilltop on Saturday August 11th. The meeting will be chaired by Council Member Paul DCamp and will focus on identifying possible steps the City and its residents can take to prevent criminal acts in our neighborhoods.

As currently envisioned, there will be two or three meetings of this Crime Prevention Task Force over the coming weeks. The group’s mission is to research and discuss options that will then be presented to Council for discussion and possible action.

The meeting is open to residents of Riverdale and we encourage your participation.

UPDATE: Auto theft and break-in reported on Manor Drive

UPDATE: Auto theft and break-in reported on Manor Drive

 

UPDATE (08/15/18 @ 7:11 pm): A letter has been sent to every home and business in Riverdale from the mayor outlining what’s been learned about Saturday’s crime event to-date and providing tips from the Scott County Sheriff’s Office on steps individuals can take to reduce the risk of similar activities taking place at their homes. A copy of that letter can be viewed by clicking here.

Also, Council Member Paul DCamp has been asked to convene a Crime Prevention Task Force to discuss what steps the community can take to reduce the possibility of this kind of event (and other criminal activity) taking place in Riverdale again. We will be posting meeting notices for the Task Force on the Riverdale website, social media (Facebook) and in the weekly e-newsletter.

UPDATE (08/15/18 @ 9:00 am): In a conversation this morning with Captain Joe Caffery of the Scott County Sheriff’s Office, we learned that what happened in Riverdale is part of a larger problem throughout Scott County. Here’s what we know so far:

  • The people breaking into and stealing cars are “100% juveniles” and that the stolen cars are used for joy rides. Stolen vehicles are usually recovered in Davenport or Muscatine, although the car stolen from Riverdale has not yet been recovered.
  • According to Captain Caffrey, the Sheriff’s Office would like “all the help we can get” when it comes to catching the perpetrators. Residents are advised to be vigilant and take notice of any suspicious activity happening in their neighborhood, make note of the license plate number of suspicious vehicles and call in a report to 911.
  • Looking at all of the break-ins and auto thefts occurring throughout Scott County, it appears the perpetrators are testing car handles to see if the vehicles are unlocked and are taking loose change they find inside the vehicle.
  • The car thefts reported appear to be the result of the perpetrator finding the keys to the vehicle inside the car or truck once they’re inside.
  • Most of the stolen cars have been recovered in Davenport or Muscatine – although the car stolen from Riverdale on Saturday night has not yet been recovered.

The Captain offered to have someone from the Sheriff’s Office (either the Sheriff or another high-ranking representative) come and speak at a City Council or Town Hall meeting. (An invitation was sent this morning, once we have confirmation of an appearance, we will add it to this post and to social media.)

LOOK FOR A LETTER FROM THE CITY in your mailbox and via e-newsletter on Friday providing tips on what you can do to secure your vehicles and your home to reduce the risk of this type of crime.

UPDATE (08/13/18 at 11:55 am): Sources now tell us that up to three cars were broken into on Manor Drive last Saturday night. According to one source, a report was filed with the Scott County Sheriff’s office. The mayor has called the Sheriff’s office for further clarification and to see if any additional information can be obtained and shared with residents. More updates will be posted as they occur.

ORIGINAL STORY: Saturday night, August 11, 2018, a car was broken into on Manor Drive and a second car was stolen in the same neighborhood.

We ask all residents to remember to keep their cars locked when they’re parked and to not leave any valuables in plain sight inside their cars. It’s also recommended that you lock the door in your garage that leads into the living quarters of your house.

We will provide another update when we learn more from the Scott County Sheriff’s Office.

Are bike riders on the MRT a traffic hazard?

Are bike riders on the MRT a traffic hazard?

Over the past few weeks, we’ve received comments and requests from citizens asking the City to do something about riders on the Mississippi River Trailthe bike path that runs through Riverdale from Bellingham to just past Valley Drive.

The concern is that these bike riders rarely stop at cross streets (like Manor Drive) and could cause or be involved in a traffic accident.

Adding to the concern are the facts that Manor Drive doesn’t intersect the bike trail at a 90-degree angle, making it difficult for cars and bikers to see oncoming traffic and the hill to the east of the intersection with the Scott Community College entrance limits sight lines for motorists.

To the casual observer, both situations seem dangerous.

The City of Riverdale has already posted “Yield” signs at these intersections, but bikers don’t seem to pay attention. The question asked at a recent Council Meeting raised the question of changing those signs to “Stop” signs, but similar signs on the bike trail in Bettendorf (along Devils Glen Road) seem to have no effect.

Would changing the “Yield” signs to “Stop” signs make a difference with regard to legal liability should there be an accident? The City is currently investigating that issue, but the initial research seems to indicate it won’t make a difference.

So, what to do?

What kind of signage would make a difference? Should the City be more aggressive in notifying, educating and possibly citing bike riders who don’t follow the traffic controls?

We’d like to know what you think. Contribute to the conversation on our discussion board by clicking here.