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Iowa Department of Natural Resources Requiring Cambridge Lagoon Update

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is requiring the city of Cambridge to reduce ammonia discharges from its city lagoons. To meet the requirements the city is updating the lagoons located on the southeast end of town.

In 2014 the IDNR contacted the city stating that ammonia levels being discharged from the city’s lagoons into the South Skunk River were too high. The city hired Fox Engineering to investigate possible solutions. The engineering firm proposed three options ranging in cost from $630,000 to $1.2 million.

After several options were reviewed, the city council decided to pursue the lowest cost solution. That solution involves installing ultraviolet lights to reduce the amount ammonia being discharged.


C.L. Carroll Company out of Des Moines started construction on the $650,000 project in early March with completion planned for December. Engineering fees were around $200,000 bringing the total cost of the project to $850,000.


In order to cover the updates to the city will be raising water and sewer rates. On average residents will see rates increase from $10 to $20 depending on their water and sewer usage. Sewer rates are currently $13 and will be raised to $22. Water currently costs $4 per one thousand gallons and that will increase to $5 per one thousand gallons.


Even with these increases the city of Cambridge still offers some of the lowest rates for water and sewer in Story County.


P.O. Box 216

225 Water St.

Cambridge, IA 50046

​Tel: 515-220-4541​

Cambridge City Council meetings are the first Monday of the month at 7 p.m. at the Cambridge City Center

City Hall Hours:

Monday:  10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Tuesday:  8:15 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday  8:15 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Thursday: 8:15 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Friday :  8:15 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Saturday:  Closed

Sunday:  Closed

City Code Updates - Fireworks, Driveway Definitions,

Limits on Parking in Yards, Building Permit Work Completed in One Year and Junk Accumulation 

Sign Up For Emergency Alert System

Story County residents are now able sign up for the Story County Iowa Alerts emergency notification system. There are three ways to sign-up for the free service

1. Go online at or

2. download Smart911 App to your cell phone

3. or opt-in via text messages by texting CambridgeIA to 627-83

Cambridge City Council Election Statements

Michael J. Macki

My name is Michael Macki and I am seeking reelection as a city council representative for the city of Cambridge. I am the professional school counselor at Ballard East Elementary School and have lived in Cambridge for more than 20 years. I am a veteran and very proud of my military service. I am a huge proponent of service leadership and work very hard to make sure my work in the schools and community reflect that characteristic. I love serving our little town and would appreciate the opportunity to continue doing so.

Michael J. Macki

Barb McBreen

My main reason to run for city council is to serve my community. When I was elected four years ago my goal was to improve communications for the city of Cambridge. During those four years I updated the website and shared stories on the website about city projects.

My Goals:

-  Increase communications between the city and its residents and work towards transparency.

-  Host town hall meetings to give residents a chance to get to know council members.

-  Implement more strategic planning, so the city is prepared for grant funding opportunities.

Barb McBreen


Taylor Bassett

My name is Taylor Bassett and I have been a resident of Cambridge for 9 months now and have come to call this awesome town “home”. I am the Ice Arena manager in Ames and have worked for city government for just under 7 years. I desire to get involved in the community I love and would like to represent the citizens of Cambridge. If elected, I would like to promote greater transparency between city council and Cambridge citizens, find innovative ways to make our community more appealing (community clean up, review ordinances, etc), and to ensure that past city council decisions continue to be appropriate for Cambridge residents. Safety is also a primary goal, and I would work closely with the residents and law enforcement to develop appropriate programs to ensure a safe community for all. I offer a fresh perspective and would appreciate your vote.

Taylor Bassett

Riley T. Harper

I am seeking election as a city council representative to serve my community that I love. My family and I moved from out of state a few years ago so I could pursue a Ph.D. in counseling psychology at Iowa State University. We chose a home in Cambridge rather than Ames because of the feeling of warmth and connection that we found here. Cambridge has welcomed and embraced us and we have begun to set down roots here in starting a family. I love this town and would love to repay the kindness it has shown me through listening to and serving you, it’s residents, on the city council. 

Riley T. Harper

Cambridge City Fire Restrictions 


Cambridge City Code allows recreational fires in the city, but the city code and Iowa Department of Natural Resource rules do not allow burning of hazardous materials such as plastics, electric wire, tires, etc.

  • Garbage pick up is included in residents utility and water bill, so there should be no need to burn garbage or residential waste.

  • Burning leaves and brush is permitted, but try to burn when leaves are dry to eliminate smoky fires. Cambridge is located in a river valley so smoke filled with dangerous particulates can hang over the city for several hours and is a health hazard. 

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