Hosts still needed for RAGBRAI
Fairfield’s biggest need preparing for RAGBRAI right now is housing, Tracy Vance, director of Fairfield Economic Development Association, told the Jefferson County Board of Supervisors Tuesday.
“All of the committees are making good progress,” he said. “There is a need for more residents to volunteer to house bicyclists. Mostly what riders are looking for is access to showers, bathrooms and drinking water.”
A local website, www.fairfieldragbrai.com, has information about Fairfield’s overnight hosting on July 26 and under the tab “residents,” information and a form to fill out, offering yard space for tents, floor space for sleeping bags or bed space if available. The form includes preferences residents can check, such as accepting families or small children, allowing smoking or not, gender preference and a space for further comments. The local housing committee is matching residents’ preferences with riders’ preferences.
Vance also reminded the public the Fairfield RAGBRAI T-shirts, manufactured locally at Fairfield Line, with a logo designed by Fairfield’s Josie Hannes, are the main source of revenue for local committees working on Fairfield RAGBRAI events. Currently, T-shirts are available in several sizes, two colors and are for sale at Fairfield Hy-Vee Food and Drug Store’s customer service counter and at Fairfield Area Chamber of Commerce for $20.
Beginning June 28, anyone wearing these T-shirts on the five Fridays leading up to and including July 26, can receive various discounts at area merchants. More details will be provided closer to June 28.
“Food vendors will be inspected by the state food inspector on July 26 and all vendors need to comply with city ordinances,” said Vance. “My advice to vendors is don’t get too greedy; decide what you’re going to offer and be realistic.”
Monday is the deadline for local vendors to receive preference in having a location; after Monday, vendor applications open to anyone and everyone outside the community. The local RAGBRAI website has a vendor tab and application forms for food vendors and non-food vendors.
Supervisors approved a liquor license for Four Corners Restaurant near Lockridge.
“This used to be a different establishment,” said supervisor Dick Reed. “It seems to be well run.”
Jefferson County Sheriff Gregg Morton was at Tuesday’s meeting and agreed the restaurant is not a concern to law enforcement for problems.
Morton said the Civil Service Commission has recommended Dave Rippey as a new member on the commission.
Reed said he’d like to see the guidelines about who makes recommendations for appointments to the commission.
“I have no problems with Rippey serving,” he said. “I just think it should be the board of supervisors making the recommendation instead of the commission itself. It seems it could become a conflict of interest.”
alcohol serving/selling training
Don Sanders with the Jefferson County Alcohol Consumption Commission asked the supervisors to consider requiring employee training in the future as a condition of approving a liquor license or renewing a liquor license.
“On behalf of the commission, I want to thank the supervisors in helping to limit under-age drinking and adding a training requirement for selling beer at the fairgrounds [Saturday at the Young and Wild Rodeo Co. second annual fundraising rodeo],” he said.
“As you know, we do undercover purchases and the most recent with 25 establishments, had a 40 percent failure rate,” said Sanders.
Training is provided for employees at no charge, and two options are available. Iowa Department of Alcohol Division provides an online 45-minute training course. Passing the course provides a two-year certificate.
“Those completing the online course and then failing an undercover compliance check, the owner of the business gets one free pass,” said Sander. “The employee selling or serving still gets fined.”
Locally, Southern Iowa Economic Development Association provides a 2.5 hours training course.
“The SIEDA training shows how to spot fake IDs and information about serving underage people,” he said. “We’d like for the future the board require training before granting the liquor license.”
Morton said he advocates for employees of places selling alcohol to receive training.
County engineer Scott Cline reported Tuesday road crews had been cleaning up previous storm damage the previous week.
“Crews have been ditch cleaning and repairing culverts. Some will have to wait until conditions are drier,” he said.
Reed asked Cline to have crews take out two dead pine trees around the courthouse.
Reed received a plaque and county employee appreciation Tuesday for his years of guidance and diligence in renovations to the courthouse.
“His efforts have saved enormous amounts of taxpayers’ money in making these repairs and updates,” said supervisor chairman Lee Dimmitt.
Reed said he didn’t expect recognition.
“It’s not about me,” said Reed. “It feels good to be acknowledged. Renovations and repairs were a good thing to do, and I couldn’t have done it without the support of this board.”