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Posted July 31, 2013in Iowa Watchdog

Judges pension plan underfunded by $53 million

DES MOINES – Gov. Terry Branstad’s veto to pump $18.9 million into Iowa’s judicial pension system left the plan with an unfunded liability of $53 million, according to figures from the Legislative Services Agency. The pension plan, which covers judges and has 386 members, is currently funded at 69 percent.

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Posted July 31, 2013in Sore Thumbs

‘SHIN MEGAMI TENSEI IV’    (M) **** Atlus Nintendo 3DS If you think about it, “Pokemon” games are actually animal cruelty simulators. First you attack and imprison wild Pokemon, and then you force them to battle on your behalf—oftentimes for nothing but your own amusement or glory. It’s really no different

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Posted July 31, 2013in Sound Notes

The Des Moines Music Coalition is accepting band submissions for this year’s Little BIG Fest until Monday, Aug 5. This year’s festival will take place in the East Village on Nov. 15 and will be headlined by New Orleans brass ensemble, The Soul Rebels Brass Band. Any local bands interested

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Posted July 31, 2013in Good Bad Ugly

The good Amanda the Panda Grief Center will host its annual volunteer appreciation event at its new facility in West Des Moines from 1-4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 4 The event invites the non-profit’s dedicated volunteers to be recognized. Mary and Mark Whitfield, Kelly Lester, Darla Jergens, Ryan Gansen and

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Posted July 31, 2013in Cover Story

Flip the Switch!

In primitive times, people of some cultures believed that the camera steals the soul. Some say that belief stemmed from the superstition that revealing identifying things, such as your name or likeness, gives the ill-intended all they need to work their voodoo on you. In that case, have any of

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Posted July 31, 2013in Civic Skinny

Price of your Register is going up. Probably.

The price of The Des Moines Register is going up. Again. Here’s the gobbledegook start of a memo sent to all Register employees late Friday: “We wanted to make you aware of an important corporate companywide initiative that will be affecting our subscribers’ subscription rates starting on September 1, 2013.

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Posted July 31, 2013in Sound Check

Buddy Guy “Rhythm and Blues” RCA Calling Buddy Guy a blues legend is to be simplistic and reductive. But sometimes an artist’s talents so far outstrip those of a humble scribe, that to be simplistic and reductive is all we’re left with. For “Rhythm and Blues,” his new two-disc release,

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Posted July 31, 2013in Your Money

Paid for by taxpayers in… Des Moines

Amount: $190 To: Medtech Forensics Inc. in Florida For: Purchase of blood test kits and evidence-collection swabs for the Des Moines Police Department.   Amount: $975 To: Blur MediaWorks Inc. For: Cost of coordinating, scripting, filming and editing a marketing video for Des Moines Parks and Rec.   Amount: $20,000

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Posted July 31, 2013in Locker Room

Barley PAR-TEE time

When is a game of golf not a game of golf? Is it still golf if you’re limited to two clubs, neither of which can be a putter? What about when tennis balls are used in place of golf balls? Or how about teeing off with a live band only

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Posted July 31, 2013in The Sound

515 Alive!… literally

The capital city’s music festival season — a period that unofficially runs from April to November — is remarkable in its diversity. From the hard rock of Lazerfest to Little BIG Fest’s eclectic jam/Americana/country mix to 80/35’s celebration of all things indie, if you’re interested in music in this town,

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