Seeking Positive Impact Business Award Nominations
Allamakee County Economic Development (ACED) is seeking nominations for the 2018 “Cloy Kuhse Positive Impact Award".
To be eligible, the recipient must be a business located in Allamakee County. ACED will accept nominations until Friday, September 7, 2018. Award winner announcement and ceremony will be at the ACED Annual Banquet in October. The Award Recipient will receive a plaque and will be added to the Award Plaque that is displayed at the ACED office. New Albin Savings Bank was the 2017 Cloy Kuhse Positive Impact Award winner, and ACED looks forward to announcing another business that is making a positive impact at their annual meeting this October.
This Business Recognition award was created in 2011 to honor the late Cloy Kuhse whom was an ACED Board Director. “The award was created to highlight and recognize a business that is making a positive impact in Allamakee County as well as to honor the memory of Cloy and his vision,” ACED Executive Director Val Reinke stated.
To nominate a business, nomination forms can be picked up at the ACED office, 101 W. Main Street, Waukon and are available on the ACED website, https://www.allamakeecounty.com/economic-development/cloy-kuhse-positive-impact-award
Contact ACED at 563-568-2624
for more information.
| AcenTek Brings Fiber to New Albin
The fiber upgrade is well underway in the community of New Albin and the people are excited. Once the build is complete, AcenTek will be able to offer residents internet speeds starting at 200Mbps, all the way up to 1 Gig. Businesses, too, will be able to enjoy faster internet speeds. Over 570 homes and businesses will potentially benefit from the 130+ miles of fiber optic cable that will be installed in this community.
AcenTek, the provider of Internet, Voice and Video services, decided to invest in the community of New Albin by replacing their copper facility with fiber. Fiber optics will allow all customers, even rural ones, to be able to get much faster internet. Some rural customers were unable to get video service, due to their location, but with this fiber build, video is now possible. When asked about the decision to bring fiber to New Albin, Todd Roesler, CEO of AcenTek said, "We have provided service to the people of New Albin since 1958 and 60 years later we are thrilled to be able to upgrade this community to fiber. We are making a sizable investment of time and money, but I feel it is well worth it because the end result is being able to provide the customer with the best service available. The best is fiber."
Central Cable, the contractor hired by AcenTek to do the construction on the project, is present nearly everywhere you look in New Albin. The alleys in town along with the gravel roads outside of town are lined with trucks and equipment, all necessary for the fiber construction.
The process to bring fiber to New Albin began in January, when residents and business owners were contacted by AcenTek to schedule home assessments. A home assessment is a brief visit by an inspector who reviews the property to determine where the fiber optics will enter the building(s). Drawings and notes were made for every location, and are referenced at time of construction. Even non-customers were invited to have a home assessment done. This allows AcenTek to bury the fiber optics to their location in the event that they, in the future, choose to become a customer.
Even if the resident/business owner never becomes a customer, having fiber to their property is a benefit, as it increases the value should they ever choose to sell their property.
Before the construction phase could begin, several things had to happen. All of the appropriate right-of-way permits had to be obtained from both the county and the state. Since the New Albin serving area extends beyond Allamakee County, IA into Houston County, MN, permits were needed from both counties and from both states. The soil and terrain of the area also had to be studied. Understanding the topography allows the crew to determine what technique is needed for replacing the underground cabling. Locating the existing underground utilities is also done prior to avoid disruption of service during the construction process.
Fiber cabling can be installed a couple of different ways. Knifing the fiber in is one of the techniques used, which is the faster and less expensive process of the two. In the Sandcove area (south of New Albin), however, boring machines were more commonly used due to the sandy soil. A boring machine acts like a horizontal drill, minimizing the disruption of the landscape. When working with loose soil, this machine is the better option to minimize the disturbance to the area. A boring machine is also the tool of choice when running fiber under a cement pad or some surface that cannot be worked, most commonly found on properties in town.
Despite the wet weather, Central Cable has only had one rain day. This explains why they are nearly 3 weeks ahead of schedule with the construction. With only a handful of properties left to address in town and less than 60 left in rural New Albin, Central Cable is ahead of schedule and is expected to complete this phase near the end of July.
The final phase, installation, will come next. During this process, an AcenTek technician will visit all customers’ property to convert their services from copper to the new fiber optic network. Expected date for customers to be installed and enjoying the benefits of fiber is fall of 2018.
While faster internet speed is the biggest, most obvious benefit of New Albin getting fiber, it is not the only one. A fiber connection is more reliable than copper so customers can expect far less disruptions to their services during storms. The improved reputation and economy of a fiber-connected community are also possible reactions of the fiber upgrade. A community that can offer future residents (and potential businesses) connectivity to fiber optics is more attractive as they consider relocating to this rural border town.
To follow the progress of AcenTek’s fiber project in New Albin, log on to https://www.AcenTek.net/FiberNewAlbin
Pinterest is a Hit with Older Gen X
Here is an excerpt from Travel Iowa's newsletter:
Pinterest reaches half of all of the members of older Gen X and is a top travel search site for this group. Older GenXers (those age 45-54) tend to use Pinterest as a way to plan their lives and make decisions.
When you're developing pins for travel, keep in mind that 83% of older GenXers say they spend a few weeks researching travel purchases, so helpful planning tips are a plus.
Takeaway: If you don't currently use Pinterest for marketing, consider how it could help you reach a new audience - specifically, older GenXers. Read Pinterest's full report on GenX here.
Registered Apprenticeship Funding Extended to Friday, Aug. 10
DES MOINES – Organizations now have until 1 p.m.
on Friday, Aug. 10
to submit proposals
to Iowa Workforce Development to receive funding to grow Registered Apprenticeship opportunities in Iowa.
Iowa Workforce Development was recently awarded an additional $1 million ApprenticeshipUSA State Expansion Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to strengthen and grow Registered Apprenticeship opportunities in Iowa. The grant is focused on expanding opportunities in healthcare and advanced manufacturing, the fastest growing and largest employment sectors in the state, as well as increasing the participation of women, youth, minorities, veterans and people with disabilities.
Organizations may apply for funding in five areas: Quality Pre-Apprenticeship; High School Registered Apprenticeship; Healthcare Sector Registered Apprenticeship; Advanced Manufacturing Sector Registered Apprenticeship; and Pilot Quality Pre-Apprenticeship Program.
The full Request for Proposal (RFP) and the guidelines for submitting a proposal is available online
for the following programs:
Budgeting Class in Waukon
NEICAC continues to offer homebuyer education, credit counseling and financial counseling.
NEICAC is also in process of completing a class for renters (landlords are welcome to attend too).
Please feel free to contact NEICAC with questions or concerns regarding these classes.
Jeremy Jostand, CCAP, NCRP
Housing Director, NEICAC
Tuesday, August 21
5:30 p.m. - 7 p.m.
LABORSHED is Underway!
Allamakee County Economic Development and Iowa Workforce Development have been working diligently to reach out to Waukon employers with 5 or more employees. Thank you to the Waukon employers who provided a listing of zip codes. This will determine the laborshed area.
A confidential residential telephone survey will be conducted to collect workforce characteristic information specific to the area. The survey call originates out of Cedar Rapids, IA, therefore, the incoming number will have the “319” area code. It is possible that you may receive a text message from their “888” number as well, alerting you to expect a call from them to take the survey. Survey questions will cover topics such as: employment status, current and desired wages, current and desired benefits, education level, and type of occupation among other things. However, Iowa Workforce Development will not be asking survey takers identifiable information such as: name, social security number, or date of birth.
Your participation in this study will help economic development efforts and support both current and potential employers in your area.
Every year Iowa Workforce Development conducts Laborshed studies across the State. The results of each analysis are publicly available online at www.iowalmi.gov/laborshed
. If you have any questions about the Laborshed project, please contact Val Reinke 563.568.2624.
Home Base Iowa Virtual Recruitment Event
Tuesday, August 21st, 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Home Base Iowa
will sponsor a virtual career fair hosted by RecruitMilitary
on Tuesday, August 21, 2018. RecruitMilitary has identified over 10,000 veterans who are willing to relocate for the right job and are actively seeking employment. Registration is available to the first 30 companies, with HBI Star Donor companies having priority. Click here
to learn more and register.
Allamakee County Fair Recap
ACED hosted a booth at the Allamakee County Fair in 2018. Communities were given the opportunity to promote their businesses, events, and attractions at the booth.
Many thanks to:
Postville YMCA, Director Jenny Cole - Wednesday evening
Waterville, Mayor Dave Monserud - Thursday evening
Harpers Ferry - Granny Basketball Coach Bill Nation - Friday evening
Congressional Fly-In Washington D.C.
Allamakee County Economic Development focused on local tourism on Saturday. Booth visitors were asked the last time they visited Effigy Mounds National Monument or Yellow River State Forest. Conversations included lodging options, kayaking, fishing, hiking and more.
ACED focused on the County Comprehensive Plan on Sunday. Booth visitors were given a flyer that outlined the importance of the comprehensive plan. The county needs feedback from all age groups. Where do we want focus for the future? Look for more information on the "AllinAllamakee" county comprehensive plan in social media, radio, newsletters, and local newspapers.
Congratulations to Robert Johanningmeier! Robert won the $60 shopping spree in Allamakee County. The spree included the following gift certificates: $10 City Meat Market, New Albin; $10 Safe House Saloon, Lansing; $10 Madigan Winery, Lansing/Harpers Ferry; $10 John's Hardware, Postville; $10 Waukon Greenhouse, Waukon; $10 The Winchester, Waterville - all compliments of Allamakee County Economic Development & Tourism.
Val Reinke traveled to Washington D.C. on July 16, 2018. The National Trust for Historic Preservation has diligently been working to fund the incredible amount of maintenance backlog in our national parks. Iowa is the home to two national park assets: Effigy Mounds National Monument, Allamakee County and Herbert Hoover Historic Site, West Branch. Maintenance backlog is now estimated at $11.6 billion dollars for the 417 national park assets! $4.5 million of these dollars tie to the national park assets in Iowa. As of now, Effigy Mounds National Monument's sewer system which was built in 1959 is no longer is working order. Port-a-potties now line the parking lot. Allamakee County Economic Development & Tourism hangs it's hat so-to-speak on Effigy Mounds National Monument. Visitors to the monument reach about 80,000/year. Every place wants "something" to call their own. For Allamakee County it is Effigy Mounds National Monument.
A team of 3 from Iowa along with a team from North Carolina and South Carolina were involved with this final fly-in. Each team worked capitol hill to gain support for the non-partisan legislation. The legislation being discussed would wipe out about 1/2 of the backlog in 5 years. This is in the works right now, so we are anxiously awaiting word.
Josh Moe, Iowa Historic Preservation Committee; Senator Joni Ernst; Val Reinke, Allamakee County Economic Development & Tourism; and Kevin Rogers, West Branch Main Street.
Red Rock Threshers were HERE
More than 200 tractors from the Red Rock Thresher group arrived in our neck-of-the-woods during the Allamakee County Fair. Val had the opportunity to talk to a group of riders at WW Homestead Dairy. The group had arrived a day early, so they could take in the Decorah Eagles Nest, Decorah Fish Hatchery, Waukon Harley Davidson, WW Homestead Dairy and Effigy Mounds National Monument. We love our visitors!
FYI: Val Reinke found herself in the tractorcade, but she was driving dark blue Dodge van rather than a tractor on Lycurgus.
Iowa Film Project Receives Grant
Congratulations to Jack Meggers of Des Moines, FilmScene of Iowa City and the Oneota Film Festival of Decorah for receiving grant funding from the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs this month. These are just three of more than 200 statewide projects that received more than $2 million in highly competitive grant awards during the current funding cycle.
Check out Jack's project: https://www.jack.film/
Edward Jones office relocated to 506 W Main St, Waukon, IA 52172
(next to Dave's Gus & Tony's)
Goodfella's Garage relocated to 502 Allamakee Street, Waukon, IA 52172
(by WW Homestead Dairy)
CRS Laundromat in Waukon has new owners and a new look:
The Waukon Banquet Center gets a facelift!
The Amphitheater in Waukon City Park is making progress.
Harpers Ferry Area Historical Society has scheduled the Grand Opening
for the Oil Springs School on Saturday, September 8, 2018
Lilac & Rose Bed & Bath in Lansing hosted an
Open House on Saturday, July 28.