Rod Sullivan, Supervisor, Johnson County, Iowa

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February 15, 2018

Sullivan’s Salvos     2/20/18

In this edition:

*RIP Tom Walz
*DVIP Souper Bowl
*Bowl For Kids Sake
*FY2019 Budget Public Hearing
*Real Iowans in Johnson County!
*Did You Know?

*RIP Tom Walz
         My friend, mentor, and professor Tom Walz passed away this week. In addition to serving decades as a UI Professor of Social Work, Tom was the founder of Bill’s Coffee Shop, Uptown Bill’s, and Extend the Dream.

         Tom often asked me back to the School of Social Work to his Public Policy classes, in which he would absolutely give me hell for failing to do enough for people who had various disadvantages. But he did so with a smile on his face, and when he finished, he would tell me he was proud of me.

         I always thought Tom was best summed up by a series of photos on the wall of the family home. They got a family portrait every year, and these photos hung on the wall in chronological order. One year there would be two African American girls; the next, an older man who used a wheelchair. Two years later, the girls were back, and so was a young man with Downs Syndrome. Bill Sackter came and went. It went on like that every year – new faces, old faces - everyone was a part of Tom’s family!

         RIP, Tom. I know you didn’t like giving or receiving grades, but you just got an A+.

*DVIP Souper Bowl
         The Domestic Violence Intervenion Program (DVIP) is holding its 21st Annual Souper Bowl fundraiser on Thursday, February 22 from 5:30-7:30 PM at the Clarion Highlander.

         From the Souper Bowl Facebook Page: In the chill of February in Iowa, we are reminded of the need to break bread, share conversation, and support our neighbors. As our client, Angela, expressed with tears streaming down her face as she leaned over to her advocate, “All of these people are here for us? I had no idea. I have felt so alone in this for so long. Thank you.”

With your support, we are able to provide much-needed resources to those most vulnerable within our community while sharing amazing food with our neighbors in a family-friendly atmosphere! Your donation goes directly to serving victim/survivors within our community!

Guests choose a unique, often one of a kind, donated bowl, and eat an unlimited amount of amazing soup from area restaurants while conversing with other supporters to local music. The proceeds from this event provide much-needed funding to keep the doors of our emergency shelter open, our advocates in the community, and help individuals and families to find safety and dignity when they most need it.

*Bowl For Kids’ Sake
The Sullivan for Supervisor team is once again raising money for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Johnson County by Bowling For Kids’ Sake on Saturday, February 24.

Bowl for Kids' Sake is Big Brothers Big Sisters largest national fundraiser, raising over $20 million annually for children in need across the country. Because of Bowl for Kids' Sake, more Bigs and Littles can be paired up, more friendships can be created and improved outlooks on life can be started.

*FY2019 Budget Public Hearing
The Johnson County Board of Supervisors has approved the Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Estimate. Detailed information about the budget will be presented at a public hearing at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at the Johnson County Administration Building, 913 South Dubuque Street, Iowa City, in the second floor boardroom. A reception with refreshments will begin at 5 p.m.

A complete packet of the budget estimate is available at on the Finance Department page under “FY19 Budget.” The following link will take you directly to the tax calculation worksheet:

The budget is also available for viewing at the Iowa Department of Management’s public budget report website at
Questions may be directed to the Johnson County Finance Department at 319-688-8095.

*Real Iowans in Johnson County!
         I often hear political journalists, Democratic candidates, and Democratic campaign operatives make statements like, “Johnson County does not matter,” or “No statewide candidate can come from Johnson County,” or “We are going to talk to REAL Iowans, not people in Johnson County.”

         I am sick of it. Sick! So I have a new mission. I am going to call those people out – every time. And I am going to publicize that I called them out. And I am going to badger them until the day I die, trampled in a Peace protest!

         Seriously – I am sick of it. Johnson County is the most Democratic County in Iowa. We provide the largest margin in Iowa. Candidates milk this place for votes, volunteers, and money. Yet all we get in return is disrespect.

         Candidates seem to take a perverse joy in telling us we are too idealistic. It is almost as brazen as, “Thanks for the money, but I am not going to even TRY to give you anything you requested.” Except they don’t even say, “Thanks for the money.”

         So I am done. Done seeing and hearing the people of this County disrespected. Are we a well-educated group? Yes. Do we care about Labor issues? Yes. Do we care about the environment? Yes. Do we care about women’s healthcare? Yes. Are many of us LGBTQ? Yes. I could go on. Bottom line? We are every bit as “Iowan” as any other part of Iowa!

         Beware, statewide candidates, because my campaign is real! Johnson County deserves much better than it gets. I am certain we will continue to provide votes, volunteers, and money. But be careful - we might just start demanding a little more in return!

*DID YOU KNOW?  In 2000, population density in Johnson County was 181 people per square mile. By the 2010 Census, that number had increased to 222 people per square mile. It will be interesting to see where that number lands following the 2020 Census!

Anyone interested in learning more about County government should take a look at the County website-

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As always, feel free to contact me at 354-7199 or I look forward to serving you!