MEETING INFO

We meet Thursdays at 11:45 AM
Wakonda Club
3915 Fleur Drive
Des Moines, IA  50321
United States

Phone:
(515) 244-6028
Fax:
(515) 244-6083
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Speakers
David Oman and Congressman Neal Smith
Oct 26, 2017
Conversation on Legislative Collegiality - Then/Now
IA Governor Kim Reynolds
Nov 02, 2017
Vision for Iowa's Future
 
October 2017
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It was a fun day at Rotary! Eight beautiful cars could be seen as you pulled into the Wakonda parking lot! Thanks to Randy Worth for organizing this annual display of prized possessions. Randy also brought his Ford truck and thanks to John Ware, John Stark, Paul Johnson, David Oman, Paul Kirpes, Mary Kramer, and Bill Jackson for participating. President Jamie presented Paul Johnson a best of show award for his 1969 Mercedes and David Oman a spin wheel. David puttered in this brisk day with top down in his 1976 TR6!
 
President Jamie reminded us that the 5th annual World Polio Day is October 24th and is a live streamed event. Hosted by Bill and Melinda Gates.
 
Our weekly inspiration was presented by Sarai Rice who asked for a moment of silence to go to our own happy place which could possibly be by a water source in line with our speaker topic. If you missed the meeting close your eyes now and go to a special happy place! Michelle Book introduced two visiting Rotarians but we had no guests.
 
Bill Stowe introduced our speaker John Torbert, Director of the Iowa Drainage District Association (IDDA). Mr. Torbert came to Des Moines from St. Louis to go to Drake and has been here ever since. He received his BA and MA at Drake. He has served as the IDDA director since 2001. Mr. Torbert stated that there are many challenging issues with the nine million acres under drainage in Iowa. One major issue is the nitrate trends. Time of year, weather, and rain events really influence nitrate amounts. Phosphorous transfer is another problem due to topsoil erosion. Trying to control both at the same time can cause both processes to work against each other so that is another problem. Due to Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy he stated Iowa is the first state in the Mississippi River region to reduce the nutrient loading. There is a hypoxia zone in the Gulf of Mexico that could be affected by Mississippi River drainage also.
 
Some states spend 70 million and some up to 1.2 billion dollars for water control annually. Iowa spends about 105 million per year but he stated it will take much more than that to study, fix, and control the issues. Farmers and landowners pay for constructive wetlands which are effective in nitrate removal but costly. There are currently only 4-5 a year being built but he says it needs to be 100 a year. Cover crops are an easy solution but timing is s factor with a small window to do the crops after harvest and before the ground frosts.
  
As a summary, Mr. Torbert said it’s going to take many more groups other than the IDDA and a lot more funding to improve our water.
 
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