UPDATE: March 23, 2020

UPDATE: March 23, 2020

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Editor's Note: We have corrected the St. Patrick's fish fry question to reflect they have been canceled due to the coronavirus threat.

Q: I live in the 3100 block of Gilbertville Road. At 3144, it appears to be a junkyard now. Who can I call? Do I call Waterloo or Evansdale?

A: Gilbertville Road in that area is the city limits line between Evansdale and rural Black Hawk County. Even-numbered addresses are on the southwest side of Gilbertville Road, which is in the city of Evansdale.

Q: I saw a sign on the Waterloo Regional Airports baggage claim from the mayor stating Waterloo is a transformative economic city. Who paid for that and what does it mean?

A: The banner was funded from the Waterloo Mayor’s Office budget as an economic development tool. The banner informed business travelers of the city’s opportunity zones status and has hung to greet guests arriving for a local conference on opportunity zones. It is a designation created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 allowing for certain investments in lower income areas to have tax advantages. More information about Waterloo’s opportunity zone program can be found on the city’s website.

Q: What will be the dates for the St. Patrick Catholic Church fish frys?

A: Due to the coronavirus threat, all fish fries have been canceled.

Q: What is the significance of Ember days during the year?

A: An explanation from the Catholic Encyclopedia: “Ember days are the days at the beginning of the seasons ordered by the Church as days of fast and abstinence. They were definitely arranged and prescribed for the entire Church by Pope Gregory VII (1073-1085) for the Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday after Dec. 13 (St. Lucia), after Ash Wednesday, after Whitsunday, and after Sept. 14 ember (Exaltation of the Cross). The purpose of their introduction, besides the general one intended by all prayer and fasting, was to thank God for the gifts of nature, to teach men to make use of them in moderation, and to assist the needy.”

Q: When did Sheinelle Jones leave the “Today Show”?

A: Jones announced in February that she needed to take a six-week leave for vocal cord surgery and recovery.

Q: In the past two weeks, I have gotten speeding tickets on Broadway Street and I wasn’t speeding. How often do they to test them on their accuracy?

A: The fixed red-light camera at that location is owned by Sensys Gatso USA and is calibrated annually. It was last calibrated in September, according to the Waterloo Police Department. If you are asking about the department’s handheld and in-car radar units, those are checked prior to each use.

Calls 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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