A groundbreaking at the Siouxland Historical Railroad Association Thursday kicked off a one million dollar expansion of the Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historic District.
Rail Association Board President Larry Obermeyer says the museum is developing into a destination point with great public and private support:
Built between 1916 and 1918, the Milwaukee Railroad Historic District is one of the largest remaining steam locomotive-servicing facilities in the Midwest. Obermeyer says many more improvements are planned:
Obermeyer's father started restoration on the original steam engine that formerly stood outside the Sioux City Auditorium years ago. He's continuing in his family's life work:
The railroad museum site is located on Highway 12 near Riverside. It currently includes a roundhouse with a turntable and around 20 more buildings or partial structures.
Governor Terry Branstad made a rare appearance in the Iowa House Thursday morning to watch legislators take the final votes on a plan to cut taxes by at least 400-million dollars over the next four years.
The bill reduces commercial property tax rates by 10 percent over the next two years and it creates a new commercial property tax credit.
Branstad says "everybody" in the legislature and in his own office deserve credit for the achievements of the 2013 session, including that tax plan, the health care reform compromise and an education reform package.
Branstad is nearing the end of his fifth term and this is the 19th year he's negotiated deals with legislators.