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Q: Does current Iowa law require a local school district to provide preschool at taxpayer expense?

A: No.

Q: When people say they got the wind knocked out of them, what exactly happens in your body?

A: A blow or fall on your stomach or back causes compression of the nerves behind the stomach — the solar plexus. This makes the diaphragm contract and go into spasm, which then makes it difficult to breathe in and out properly.

Q: I read medical bills are a major cause of bankruptcy. Is that true?

A: Yes. According to a May USA Today report, “Medical debt is the No. 1 source of personal bankruptcy filings in the U.S.”

Q: Can you print the phone number and address for the governor of Iowa?

A: Call (515) 281-5211, or write to Gov. Kim Reynolds at 1007 E. Grand Ave., Des Moines 50319.

Q: Who does the voice for the dog on the Bush beans commercials?

A: It’s veteran actor Robert Cait.

Q: Are vehicles on the road that have tinted windows against the law?

A: According to the Iowa DOT, “Iowa law prohibits a person from operating a motor vehicle that is equipped with a front windshield or a side window to the immediate right or left of the driver (front side window) which does not meet a standard of transparency of 70 percent light transmittance.”

Q: What were the previous names of US Bank before it was called that?

A: Waterloo city directories list Mercantile Bank of Northern Iowa during the 1990s and Waterloo Savings Bank before that.

Q: What commandment says not to bear false witness against your neighbor?

A: That’s No. 9.

Q: How did Robin Williams die?

A: He committed suicide.

Q: Can you explain exactly what bipolar means?

A: Here’s how the National Alliance on Mental Illness explains it: “Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that causes dramatic shifts in a person’s mood, energy and ability to think clearly. People with bipolar experience high and low moods — known as mania and depression — which differ from the typical ups and downs most people experience. ... If left untreated, bipolar disorder usually worsens. However, with a good treatment plan including psychotherapy, medications, a healthy lifestyle, a regular schedule and early identification of symptoms, many people live well with the condition.”

Q: Will the rest area on the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and Idaho be removed when the new Dollar General is built?

A: No. The area to be sold there excludes the trail head.

Q: What is being built at Highway 63 and Ridgeway Avenue?

A: There are a couple of projects under construction in that area. The northeast corner is seeing the construction of The Reserves II, which will be a strip mall for retail and offices. A little farther west on Ridgeway, Kwik Star is building a fuel blending facility.

Q: What is the status of Chris Shimp’s arrest for public intoxication?

A: Shimp pleaded not guilty and has a trial scheduled for Jan. 22.

Questions are taken on a special Courier phone line at 234-3566. Questions are answered by Courier staff and staff at the Waterloo Public Library.

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