Rod Sullivan, Supervisor, Johnson County, Iowa

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February 6, 2015

Sullivan’s Salvos     2/10/15

In this edition:

*DVIP Souper Bowl
*School Busing
*Shelter House Celebration
*Injustice On Our Plates
*A Friend Of The Show
*Real Tax Info
*Did You Know?

*DVIP Souper Bowl
The annual DVIP Souper Bowl is Thursday, February 19 from 5:30-7:30 at the Clarion Highlander. With each $25 ticket, you get to pick one soup bowl, which is donated by community members, antique stores, and Fired Up through out the year. Many groups and organization collect the very unique and fun bowls.

You can use your bowl to eat soups that are also donated by famous restaurants around town, all while you are listening to the live music!

Tickets are available at Hills Bank, Fired Up Iowa City, or by calling Missie at DVIP at 319-356-9863. You can also purchase tickets online at:

*School Busing
         I recently heard some disconcerting news… it sounds as though the ICCSD is going to eliminate discretionary busing. In other words, there will be no more busses for kids who live under 2 miles from their assigned school.

         Look, I understand that the Republicans in the Iowa Legislature have put the ICCSD in a bind. We should all be angry with Governor Branstad and those Legislators, and we should let them hear it. The ICCSD Board is going to be forced to make some cuts, and cuts are never easy.

         Still, must the cuts come from things that benefit our poorest students? I think this discretionary busing disproportionately affects children from lower income families. Busing would be eliminated for kids that go from Pheasant Ridge to Weber. Busing would be eliminated for kids that go from Forest View to Horace Mann. These are pretty critical services for poor families, many of whom lack cars.

         Isn’t there something that can be cut that affects wealthy kids? That isn’t great, either, but at least their parents can make adjustments. So, ICCSD – are there other options?

*Shelter House Celebration
         Shelter House will be holding a celebration to honor contributors to the Temporary Winter Emergency Shelter.

         The event is Sunday, February 15 from 2-4pm at the former Aldi’s location, which served as the temporary shelter. Please RSVP by February 14 to Sarah Fletcher at

*Injustice On Our Plates
         The UI Labor Center is holding “Injustice On Our Plates” a discussion on how the working conditions for food workers affect us all.

         Topics include the challenges food workers face, how workers are coming together to address these challenges, and what is happening in Iowa.

         The event is Saturday, February 28 from 9-3 on the second floor of the Old Capitol Mall. Lunch is provided for people who register by February 23. To register, call the Labor Center at 335-4144.

*A Friend Of The Show!
         Have you ever been watching a talk show or a pundit and heard them refer to someone as a “friend of the show”? You know the type – regular guest, regular caller? Well, if Salvos has such a thing as a “friend of the show”, it would definitely be Sherman Johnson.

         And that is interesting, because Sherman doesn’t even LIVE here – he lives in Maryland! Trust me – this will make sense in a moment.

         Sherman is the son of Nick Johnson and stepson of Mary Vasey, two prominent longtime residents of Johnson County. Sherman’s brother Greg has been involved in all sorts of interesting efforts in our community. And the apple did not fall far from the tree!

         Depending upon the topic, I typically get 10-12 responses to each edition of Salvos. Some have been as short as two words, including “Go, Rod!” and “F--- You!”

         But every two or three weeks, Sherman writes. (The guy is an excellent writer.) Sherman will challenge me, congratulate me, and everything in between. He’ll cite sources, and offer gut feelings. He puts a lot of thought, heart, and effort into our exchanges.

         And once, after realizing it was midnight on a Tuesday and I was online arguing local tax policy with a guy I had never actually met who lived in Maryland, I uttered a sigh of frustration and typed, “Sherman – WHY do you care so much?”

         His response was quick and simple: “I care because my family lives there.”

         Yes. Exactly. I had asked precisely the wrong question to precisely the wrong person. The question should have been to everyone else, and it should have been, “Why don’t you care as much as Sherman?”

         Since we began emailing back and forth, I have had the opportunity to actually meet Sherman three or so times. And I have only grown in my appreciation for his emails.

         I wish more people cared more deeply about the issues of the day. I wish more people were willing to discuss things. I’m glad I have my friend Sherman to serve as an inspiration.

*Real Tax Info
         “Friend of the Show” Sherman Johnson just sent me this handy report on taxes across the country. It is from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, and contains lots of data and charts:

Quote: "Not that this should be entirely shocking but this should end the debate about how is getting fleeced and who carries the burden in society. And it's useful to have this handy to dispatch to the usual class warfare deniers."

*DID YOU KNOW?  Hallmark has over 1330 different cards specifically for Valentine's Day.

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

"Sullivan’s Salvos" is sent once per week to any interested party. It will give a brief update on issues of interest to Johnson County residents.

These messages come solely from Rod Sullivan, and neither represents the viewpoints of the whole Board of Supervisors nor those of groups or individuals otherwise mentioned.

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



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