Grant will help University of Iowa museums and libraries spread art and programming even in pandemic
A collaboration between four University of Iowa-based institutions will soon help bring their programming to wider audiences who can’t access them during the pandemic.
The Stanley Museum of Art, the Office of the State archaeologist, the Pentacrest Museums and University Libraries are partnering on the project, which secured a $200,327 grant to expand their senior programming in Southeast Iowa.
The money will be used to digitize collections from the four institutions and to create virtual events that senior living facilities can do with their residents. They also will record events, such as talks with scholars or art projects. The recordings will be available to access anytime online.
“We have about 4 million objects in our collection,” said Elizabeth Reetz, director of strategic initiatives at the Office of the State archaeologist. “We’ll be taking high-quality images of a lot of our objects and writing interpretation and question guides that can go with them … We have a lot of photographs digitized but haven’t had the time and money to really ramp up digitizing objects before now … The Pentacrest and UI Libraries are getting special cameras to do 3D tours of their galleries.”
She’s already been doing digital outreach during the pandemic, holding online lectures and discussions with archaeologists. This will be a chance to expand that effort.
“Since the pandemic, we’ve all been dabbling in this. It’s been a really short time to learn new ways of engagement and outreach,” she said. “Before, my office in particular spent a lot of time traveling to give in-person and classroom classes, and that all stopped.”
The grant is funded by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which set aside money for museums and libraries responding to the coronavirus pandemic. The grant also will help pay salaries for project staff
NIC Secures New Contracts in Florida and Iowa for Payment Processing and Digital Government Solutions
Digital government solutions firm NIC Inc. has won new multi-year contracts with the states of Florida and Iowa following competitive bid processes.
“We are excited by the confidence Florida and Iowa have placed in NIC solutions as we continue to expand our payment processing and digital government services across the country,” said Harry Herington, NIC CEO and Chairman of the Board. “These wins further reinforce the momentum NIC has experienced in 2020.”
In Florida, NIC has been awarded a contract to provide transaction-funded payment processing services for all state agencies. The five-year transaction-funded contract, which may be extended by up to five additional years, also provides the ability for cities and municipalities to work with NIC for payment processing services, promoting a comprehensive and seamless financial transaction experience for Florida citizens and businesses.
For its fiscal year ended June 2018, the state of Florida processed 74 million transactions for a total of $52 billion in payments across 19 state agencies and processed 21 million transactions for a total of more than $1 billion across more than 90 localities.
In Iowa, NIC will once again serve as the state’s enterprise digital government solutions partner after a 15-year partnership concluded in 2017. Under the new five-year transaction-funded contract, which includes five one-year renewal options, NIC’s Des Moines-based team will work with state leadership to consolidate digital services into a unified experience for all Iowans.
“We are very excited for our digital solutions partnership with NIC in Iowa, first starting with payment processing services,” said Annette Dunn, Iowa’s Chief Information Officer. “We have many large agencies across the state that can benefit not only from a strategic, streamlined approach to payment processing but also from the many digital solutions NIC provides. These solutions happen to align perfectly with Governor Reynolds’ vision for the
Iowa was the last state to ban those with felony convictions from voting, even after completion of their sentences.
Des Moines Register
Days before early voting begins in Iowa, Secretary of State Paul Pate has unveiled a new website and voter registration form with updated information on when people with felony convictions may resume voting.
Iowa’s four-member Voter Registration Commission approved the new form on Friday, Pate announced in a news release. The update comes two months after Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an executive order in early August restoring the right to vote to most people with felony convictions in Iowa once they have served their sentences, including any parole or probation.
The form, which Iowans fill out when they register to vote, includes a reference to a new state website, RestoreYourVote.iowa.gov, which contains information about the executive order and how to register to vote. The site lets people with past felony convictions check to see if their rights have been restored.
More: Early voting begins Monday. Here’s what you need to know about absentee ballots and voting early in Iowa
A sentence at the top of the new voter registration form states: “In Iowa, you are not qualified to vote following a felony conviction until your right to vote is restored by the Governor. To learn more about voting after a felony conviction visit RestoreYourVote.iowa.gov.”
At the bottom of the form, where a signature is required, the voter is asked to swear that “I have never been convicted of a felony OR my right to vote has been restored by the Governor, including through Executive Order, after a felony conviction.”
The commission that approved the change is bipartisan. Pate and Reynolds are both Republicans.
“I agree with Governor Reynolds that Iowans who have served their time deserve a