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DOT report to Congress reveals efficacy of Office of Inspector General

Are you wondering where your tax dollars are going and whether or not they’re being used effectively to benefit the trucking industry? The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General has released its semiannual report to Congress, revealing what exactly they have been up to.

Twice a year, the DOT OIG office has to let Congress know how its budget is being used. This includes where the money is being spent, the return on investment, and what the office has accomplished as a result.

According to the report, OIG closed 164 investigations in the first half of 2017 and opened 160 cases. Investigators managed to get 31 indictments and 25 convictions. OIG estimates the impact of investigations to be valued at more than $1 billion. Last year, the office returned $54 for every appropriated dollar.

Nearly half of the investigations were focused on transportation safety. More than a quarter dealt with procurement and grant fraud, with about 20 percent focusing on “employee integrity.”


Related:  Trucking Jobs

Fishing Derby in Coralville

Saturday, June 3, 2017

For ages 2-14 at the S.T. Morrison Park Pond. The Coralville Noon Optimists will be sponsoring this event on the all Iowa free fishing weekend. A fishing license is not required and the Optimists will help children as they learn to fish.

Participants will need to supply their own poles, but bait will be provided.  Parents are welcome to participate as well.  Prizes will be awarded for the biggest, smallest, and the most figh caught.

Uber Retires Otto Brand Name

Uber has quietly put the Otto brand name out to pasture, according to published reports out of San Francisco. As Forbes reports, “Uber consolidated Otto’s activities under its Advanced Technologies Group, or Uber ATG, in April and ‘retired the Otto name.’” Uber has had no further comment on the move since, although the Forbes article does note that “the change came shortly after the dismissal of a trademark infringement suit brought by Kitchener, Ontario-based Otto Motors, a unit of Clearpath Robotics that makes autonomous vehicles for warehouses and industrial facilities.”

There is no word yet from Uber on what the company will rename its autonomous truck technology business. In a written statement to Forbes, Otto Motors spokesperson Meghan Hennessey said, “We are continuing to operate under the Otto brand, whereas Uber has recently announced on its website that it is retiring the Otto name.”


Related:  Trucking Jobs

Bachelor on the Cheap Challenge: $50 to eat for a week, Day 7, breakfast

Mike Thayer 2016 (2) By Mike Thayer

Can you eat for a week on just $50?

Breaking it down by the day, that's about $7.14 per day or $2.38 per meal.

20170528_074218Day 7, last day of the challenge, breakfast:  So on the last day of this challenge I whipped up a couple of breakfast burritos at home.  Breakfast burritos are so easy to put together and the best thing about it, pretty much anything goes.  Whatever you have on hand will work as long as it's a combination of meat, cheese, eggs and bread.  For mine this morning I sauted some chopped onion in olive oil, threw in some red pepper flake, salt and pepper and let those flavors marry a bit.  Then I threw in some heavy cream to let that get happy with the seasonings.  Then I tossed in some leftover meat (whatever you have on hand works), roughly chopped, and let that all simmer for a minute or two.  Then I poured in some lightly scrambled eggs seasoned with seasoning salt and garlic powder and stirred to incorporate.  I served the eggs on two warmed tortillas with melted American cheese.  It was another dose of YUM!   This meal cost me about $2 to prepare and I had all the ingredients on hand, no special trip to the store required.  TIP:  It pays to have a well stocked pantry and fridge.

Meal totals for the day:  

Breakfast:  $2.00

An excellent and DELICIOUS start to the last day of the challenge! 

Cumulative total for the Challenge:

Day 1:  $7.25
Day 2:  $6.90
Day 3:  $6.55
Day 4:  $4.21
Day 5:  $6.90
Day 6:  $6.47
Day 7:  $2.00 (breakfast)

Grand Total:  $40.28 so far and under budget!   Looks like I can eat pretty well for lunch AND dinner and there's no Ramen in sight!

Need some meal ideas?  Go to the Bachelor on the Cheap You Tube Channel

Iowa City Police investigate shots fired

On May 27, 2017 at 3:40 a.m., Iowa City Police officers responded to 1100 Arthur Street on report of multiple shots fired.  A caller reported that a vehicle left the scene after the shots, but no suspect descriptions were provided.  There were no reported injuries at the time of the call.

Iowa City Area CrimeStoppers is offering a reward of up to $1000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspect/s.  Anyone with information about this crime is urged to contact CrimeStoppers at 358-TIPS (8477).  All calls are held in strict confidence and anonymity is guaranteed.  Individuals providing information do not have to reveal their identity to collect a reward. 

City of Iowa City Transportation Services: Schedule of services during Arts Fest (June 1 to June 4, 2017)

Thursday, June 1, 2017:  Starting at 6AM, the bus interchange will move from Washington and Clinton Street to a temporary location on Court Street between Clinton and Dubuque (adjacent to the Court Street Transportation Center) until the service day is concluded on Saturday, June 3, 2017. Normal bus service utilizing the main transit interchange will resume on Monday, June 5, 2017. Iowa City Transit will be operating a normal weekday and Saturday schedules during Arts Fest.

The outbound bus stops located at Washington Street & Linn Street (stop 7200), Washington Street and Gilbert Street (stop 7201), Clinton Street & Jefferson Street (stop 7400),  Jefferson Street & Linn Street (stop 7401), Washington Street and Madison Street (stop 7082) will be closed. The inbound bus stops located at Madison Street & Washington Street (stop 7081),UI Lindquist Center ( stop 7079), Market Street & Linn Street (stop 7206), Clinton Street & Jefferson Street (stop 7207), IC Recreation Center (stop 7243), and Burlington Street & Dubuque Street (stop 7244) will also be closed. Customers who use these stops should catch their buses at the alternate interchange on Court Street. These stops will reopen on Monday, June 5, 2017.

Friday, June 2, 2017: Iowa City Transit will run a normal weekday schedule. The detours and stop closures begun on Thursday will still be in effect.

Saturday, June 3, 2017:  Iowa City Transit will run a normal Saturday schedule. The detours and stop closures begun on Thursday will still be in effect.

Sunday, June 4, 2017: No bus service.

Parking Department: The Parking Department will be operating a normal weekday and weekend schedule from Thursday, June 1, through Sunday, June 4, 2017. Parking ramps will be open and staffed. All parking regulations will be in effect and enforced.


For more information, please call the Transportation Services Department at 356-5151 or visit us on the web at

Pedestrian Path temporarily closes on Dubuque Street

PedestriansPedestrians will need to use a detour that will re-route them off of Dubuque Street.

Crews have closed the path between Park Road and Church Street, and it will remain closed through at least Tuesday, May 30, 2017. Crews are installing a left turn lane from Dubuque Street onto Park Road, and are paving the pedestrian path. 

Pedestrians and cyclists will need to use the marked Hancher Bridge detour during this short-term closure. This route must be used. There is no sidewalk on the east side of Dubuque Street. 

The Iowa City Gateway Project is a flood mitigation effort that is elevating Dubuque Street while raising and replacing the Park Road Bridge. To receive project updates be sure to sign-up for City of Iowa City e-subscriptions, and follow the City of Iowa City on Facebook and Twitter using #ICgateway. To learn more visit

Party in the Park summer schedule announced

Connect with friends, family and neighbors this summer at Party in the Park. The 2017 season begins at 6:30 on Thursday, June 8 at Court Hill Park, located at 2825 Friendship Street. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy live music by Old Capitol String Band, games, arts and crafts, and frozen treats. Additionally, there will be several dates this season that will feature a special performance by the Eulenspiegel Puppet Theater at 5:30 p.m., before the Party In the Park begins. The Iowa City Public Library Bookmobile will also be on hand, as well as representatives from various City departments who will share information about their areas of expertise. Party in the Park is a no-fee event and is open to the public. Check out the full schedule of events below.

Sponsored by the City of Iowa City’s Parks and Recreation Department and the Neighborhood Outreach Division, Party in the Park gives residents a chance to enjoy their summer evenings outdoors with friends and family while exploring the City’s many beautiful natural spaces and neighborhoods.

For more information, contact Joyce Carroll, Parks and Recreation Department Arts Supervisor, at or 319-356-5100, or Marcia Bollinger, Neighborhood Outreach Planner, at or 319-356-5237.

The Corridor is rich in arts & entertainment

All the offerings of theatre - drama, musicals, comedy, dance, etc. can be found in the corridor and from a variety of venues.

Coralville Center for the Performing ArtsThe Coralville Center for the Performing Arts with the Jim L. Fausett Theater is a 472-seat auditorium located in the heart of Coralville at the corner of 5th Street and 12th Avenue.  Attend full scale performances of musicals and plays by some of the area’s best performance groups; Orchestra concerts, chamber ensembles and solo recitals; Productions by professional dancers and local dance academies.

Englert TheatreThe Englert Theatre - 221 East Washington Street, Iowa City. The Iowa City theatre provides diverse programming, educational opportunities and exposure to the performing and visual arts. Our focus is on highlighting the talents of local performers, artists and ensembles as well as hosting regional, national and international touring performances.

Old Creamery TheatreThe Old Creamery Theatre Company is proud to be the oldest professional theatre company in the state of Iowa! The Old Creamery Theatre is a not-for-profit professional theatre founded in 1971 in Garrison, Iowa. This year we are celebrating 44 years of bringing live, professional theatre to the people of Iowa and the Midwest.  Located at 39 38th Avenue, Amana.  

Paramount TheatreThe Paramount Theatre is a 1,690 seat historic theater located in downtown Cedar Rapids and owned by the City of Cedar Rapids. The Theatre’s mission is provide the citizens of Cedar Rapids and the residents of eastern Iowa with the broadest possible range of top quality cultural, educational and entertainment events.  Located at 123 Third Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids.