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Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

UPDATE (9/9/2020): Continued community spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Polk County will keep City of Des Moines administration buildings closed to the public until at least December 1.
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UPDATE (8/26/2020): Mayor Cownie has amended the emergency proclamation to mandate face coverings in public whenever proper social distancing can not be mantained. Learn More

There is an expanding global outbreak of a respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus. The disease the virus causes has been named COVID-19.

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) identified a community spread of coronavirus in the Des Moines metro on Saturday, March 14 and issued new recommendations for individuals with underlying conditions. IDPH added that all Iowans should be prepared for cancellations and disruptions to routine activities.

For the most current information about the COVID-19 situation in Polk County, visit the Polk County Health Department's website.

For a list of currently available resources for small business owners in Des Moines, visit the Greater Des Moines Partnership's website.

Language interpreters are available by calling the Iowa COVID-19 English Language Learner (ELL) Help Line at 1-877-558-2609.

City of Des Moines services impact

Public Meetings

Last updated: 6/26/2020

We are currently evaluating and prioritizing how to conduct public meetings safely without interruptions to public business. Public meetings will be held via teleconference whenever possible.

View our events calendar for the latest public meetings schedule.

Des Moines Public Library

Last updated: 9/24/2020

Beginning Monday, September 28, Central Library will be open to the public for limited browsing and other in-person services like printing, faxing, copying, and new library cards from 12-4 PM Monday through Saturday. Public computers and the Central pickup window will continue with regular full-time hours, as well. 

On Tuesday, Oct. 13, our other five libraries will offer additional services, as well.

Learn more about DMPL Express

Des Moines Parks and Recreation

Last updated: 7/31/2020

Facility Closures

  • Aquatics
    • Ashworth Pool (closed for 2020 season)
    • Northwest Aquatic Center (closed for 2020 season) 
  • Drinking Fountains
  • Fourmile Community Recreation Center (closed due to construction)
  • Gray's Lake Park
    • No swimming or wading. 
  • Splash Pools (closed for 2020 season)
  • Wading Pools (closed for 2020 season)
 Postponed/Canceled Events and Programs

Our parks and trails remain open…please enjoy them responsibly! Make sure to practice social distancing and other healthy habits.  Conditions change rapidly, so watch for updates on this page and via social media at Facebook and Twitter.

Des Moines Public Works

Last updated: 10/19/2020

The pickup of large items has resumed but we ask that you follow these guidelines:
1. The collection of bulk items must be scheduled through the Des Moines Public Works 24-Hour Customer Service Center by calling (515) 283-4950. 
2. Properly stickered items must be curbside before 7 a.m., with stickers facing the street.
3. Bulk items that require pink $5 large item stickers include:
-items that do not fit in a 33-gallon bag or a 2'x2'x3' box
-furniture including couches and tables
-rolled carpet (carpet must be rolled and tied and be no larger than 4' long and 18" in diameter)(1 $5 sticker for 5 rolls)

If you have an appliance that needs to be picked up, please purchase seven $5 pink stickers, totaling $35, and call the Public Works 24-Hour Customer Service Call Center at (515) 283-4950 to schedule collection for the following Wednesday.

If you have cardboard that needs to be recycled, that won't fit into your cart, you can take broken down boxes and flat cardboard to one of four designated containers located at 108 SE 5th Street in Des Moines.

The Metro Waste Authority (MWA) is now offering houseside colletion of household hazardous waste while the drop-off site in Bondurant and Grimes are closed. Visit the MWA website for more information.

As of this time, there are no other impacts to garbage/recycling/yard waste collection services or street maintenance.

Our November SCRUB event is taking place as scheduled on Saturday, November 21, 2020 from 7 a.m.-2 p.m. at the MWA Compost Center (1601 Harriett St.) and the MWA Transfer Station (4198 Delaware Ave.). Please review the City's web page about the event at

As part of our pandemic procedures:

  • When you arrive, please keep your vehicle windows rolled up and press your ID against the window for residency confirmation.
  • Our Public Works employees will be wearing PPE. We ask you to thoughtfully consider returning the favor by wearing a mask and/or gloves as well.
  • Maintain a six foot distance from others.

For questions or concerns about Public Works' services, residents are encouraged to call the 24/7 call center at (515) 283-4950.

Staff will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates on this page and via Facebook and Twitter.

Community Development/Housing Services

Last updated: 4/2/2020

Neighborhood Inspections Division - Rental Housing & Property Inspections 
The Neighborhood Inspections Division is doing rental inspections again. We are wearing masks when we do an inspection. We are requiring landlords, management agents and tenants to wear masks when we are in a home. If an occupant is sick or not comfortable with an inspector being in their home, we will come back when COVID-19 is not a concern. Please talk to the inspector if you have any questions.

Neighborhood Inspections is now out doing inspections looking for unlicensed vehicles, inoperable vehicles, junk and debris. Notices are going out requesting properties be cleaned up. Property owners can request more time to clean up by filing an appeal. The notice will tell you how to request a hearing. Due to COVID-19 concerns, the hearings are held over the phone. If you ask for a hearing, you will be told how to call in and talk with the hearing officer. For more information, please send an email to

Items found on the curb will be tagged, removed and the property owner will be billed for the costs.  An item with a public works sticker will be removed by Public Works.

Housing Services
The Housing Services lobby is open only for the purposes of clients dropping off information that cannot be sent by mail and clients paying rent or other charges that cannot be mailed in.  Staff are not accepting cash payments at this time. Clients are directed to conduct business with staff by phone at (515) 323-8950 or by fax or by mail. Housing Services staff are NOT available to meet with clients unless they have a pre-scheduled meeting inviting them to come into the office.

Permit and Development Center - Construction Permits & Inspections
The Offices for the Permit and Development Center are closed to the public in response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. The public will still be able to conduct business by phone and email. Learn about available services and find contact information by visiting or by calling (515) 283-4200.  

Staff will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates on this page.

City Clerk's Office

Last updated: 3/17/2020

As of 5 p.m. on March 17, the City Clerk’s Office is closed, but staff will continue to conduct business via phone and email. All deadlines have been suspended indefinitely for City permits, licenses, certifications and fines.

Residents are encouraged to pay tickets online.

Staff are available for questions at and (515) 283-4209.

Staff will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates on this page.

Civil & Human Rights Department

Last updated: 3/17/2020

In the interest of protecting the health and safety of our residents and employees and following the guidance of the Iowa Department of Public Health, the office location for the Civil & Human Rights Department is closed through at least Sunday, April 12, 2020. The Annual Des Moines Civil & Human Rights Symposium scheduled for March 18, 2020 has been canceled. The joint meeting between Des Moines City Council and the Civil & Human Rights Commission scheduled for March 12, 2020 has been rescheduled for May 14, 2020 (location TBD).

Below are some ways for us to serve you at home and protect your human rights during this pandemic:

  • Always feel free to contact us during the business hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. via telephone at (515) 283-4284 and via email at for assistance or questions.
  • Information on your human rights, including brochures on your rights in 12 different languages, can be accessed 24 hours a day at
  • Human Rights Violation Complaints can filed online in English or in Spanish at
  • If you are not comfortable filing the complaint out online, you can also print a copy of the PDF in English or Spanish at the link above, and either:
    • mail it to Des Moines Civil & Human Rights Commission, 2309 Euclid Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50310;
    • email a scanned copy to; or
    • fax a copy to (515) 237-1408.
  • If you need a physical copy of a human rights complaint form, we can also mail one to you. Please contact us via telephone or email.

Staff will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates on this page.

Public Safety Services

Last updated: 3/23/2020

Des Moines Police Department
While the Des Moines Police Department will remain open and fully staffed 24/7 with patrol services unchanged, anyone wishing to file a police report should do so by calling the non-emergency number, (515) 283-4811. Visiting the police department to file a report will not expedite services. 

If you have an emergency, please dial 911. For all other matters, find DMPD’s frequently called numbers online.

Normal parking meter enforcement will resume Monday, June 1, 2020.

The Des Moines Police Department is recruiting officers. Due to the impact COVID-19 has had in our community, the application deadline has been extended to April 13. Learn more and apply.  

Des Moines Fire Department
While the Des Moines Fire Department will remain open and fully staffed 24/7 with fire protection, emergency medical and related services unchanged,  residents with non-emergency questions can reach the DMFD by calling the non-emergency number, (515) 283-4811.

If you have an emergency, please dial 911.

Engineering Bids

Last updated: 5/13/2020

Notice to Bidders of City of Des Moines Public Improvement Projects: Effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020, at 5 p.m., all Engineering bidding documents will only be available on our website and the City has set new guidelines for submitting proposals. Sealed bids must be filed at or before 11 a.m., May 19.

Read the New Guidelines