By Donnelle Eller
The Des Moines Register
Dubuque, Coralville and Storm Lake will receive about $40 million of a nearly $97 million federal grant the state received to tackle flooding and water quality challenges, officials said at press conference.
Much of the remainder of the money will be used to target flood and water quality improvements in nine watersheds across the state.
Gov. Terry Branstad said the federal grant builds on Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy, a plan designed to reduce the nitrogen and phosphorus levels that contribute to the Gulf of Mexico dead zone, and complements his $4.7 billion water quality plan.
Branstad earlier this month proposed extending an existing 1-cent sales tax that’s earmarked for school infrastructure improvements. The governor has recommended diverting part of the growth in the sales tax over three decades to address losses of nitrogen and phosphorus from farmland.
Branstad has said Iowa schools would be guaranteed all the sales tax infrastructure money they currently receive, plus $10 million more generated from growth annually.
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