Hosted by Jim Mertens this program focuses on the issues facing the communities of Western Illinois and Eastern Iowa. The series also explores topics of national importance. Guests discuss a variety of topics with a unique and local focus along with a community calendar (Out and About) featuring events, exhibits and other activities happening throughout the region.
Airing Thursdays at 7:00PM.
*Encore airing on Sundays at 4:00PM.
Find out what's happening in the region
Jim talks with Richard Brunk, Rock Island County Board Chairman, about reducing the size of the board. Plus, Geoff Manis, Moline Centre Main Street Manager who discusses the city's Holiday Hop.
Angela Myers Henderson County Health Department and Nicole Carkner Quad City Health Initiative.
Daniel Suhr, Liberty Justice Center (Chicago, Illinois); and retired Lt. Colonel Stephen Garrington, Quad Cities Honor Flight.
Get a local perspective on the strike happening at John Deere, as Jim welcomes Dan Gosa of the Quad City Federation of Labor. Plus, Geoff Greenwood of MidAmerican Energy discusses the rise in energy costs to consumers.
Richard Harnish, High Speed Rail Alliance; Bob Swanson, Rock Island Rotary Club; and Jan Stoffer, Deere-Wiman House Director of Operations and Administration.
Mike Miller, Executive Director River Bend Food Bank; and Catie Gregg from Prairie Rivers Network.
Jeff Kaufmann, Iowa Republican Party Chair; and Dr. Amber Schultz, Western Illinois University Vice President of Enrollment Management.
TJ Schneckloth Davenport School Superintendent; and Mark Russell Smith, Quad City Symphony Orchestra.
Taylor Zeigler WIU Fraternity and Sorority Life Coordinator; and Michael Lightbody Iowa Compass Program Manager.
Along with his duties on The Cities, Jim is a WQAD (ABC) news anchor. Before relocating to the Quad Cities, he was employed by WWMT-TV in Kalamazoo, Michigan as an anchor and reporter for six years. Prior to that, Jim was an anchor and reporter for seven years at WEAU-TV in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. He began his professional career in radio in 1978 at WFON-FM in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.
Jim has received numerous awards for his journalistic reporting. His Long-form journalism has earned him first place awards with the Iowa Associated Press, the Iowa Broadcast News Association, and the Illinois News Broadcasters Association. He was former president of the Iowa Broadcast News Association, as well as the Northwest Broadcast News Association.