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Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

UPDATE (5/5/2020): City of Des Moines facilities are now closed to the public until at least June 15 The freeze on permits for public events and activities has also been extended until July 1.
Service Impacts

Recovery Assistance

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.

All Iowans should be prepared for cancellations and disruptions in 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: 6/2/2020

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.

As of today, public meetings will continue as scheduled via teleconference:

Des Moines Public Library

Last updated: 5/5/2020

The Des Moines Public Library will close all buildings until further notice, effective immediately.

Currently checked out materials will not be due for return until after DMPL locations reopen.

We have at least seven ways to utilize our resources online. While our offices are closed, you can get a library card digitally.  Please visit our website for the latest information regarding our response.

Des Moines Parks and Recreation

Last updated: 5/12/2020

In accordance with Mayor Cownie’s announcement to extend the closure of City buildings, Des Moines Parks and Recreation will close facilities and cancel/postpone events through June 15. As the situation and guidelines change, our team will provide updates  on our website and social media.

At this time, there has been no decision on how, when or if we will open our five pools/aquatic centers. We continue to evaluate a variety of scenarios and will only move forward if it is safe to do so for patrons and staff. Watch for an announcement about pools and swim lessons in late May.

Recruitment efforts for lifeguards, swim lesson instructors and cashiers are ongoing. In the event we do open, we will be ready for visitors to use the facilities as soon as possible.

Parks and trails remain open, please use them responsibly. Find less populated locations and maintain proper social distancing.

 Facilities Closed Through June 15

  • Birdland Futsal Court
  • Enclosed and Open-Air Shelters
  • Community Recreation Centers
    • Drop-in Use
    • Senior Meals
    • Youth and Adult Programs
  • Enclosed and Open-Air Shelters
  • Fourmile Skate Park
  • Gray’s Lake Park (Open with Restrictions)
    • Beach - Closed
    • Concessions/Rentals - Closed
    • Parking Lots - Closed 
    • Restrooms - Closed
    • Road - Closed
  • Park Restrooms and Water Fountains
  • Playgrounds 
  • Pools and Aquatic Centers
  • Softball Fields
  • Sports Complexes
  • Splash Pools
  • Spraygrounds
  • Wading Pools

 Postponed/Canceled Events and Programs

  • Adult Athletics
    • Summer Bags Postponed
    • Summer Futsal Postponed
    • Summer Pickleball Postponed
    • Summer Softball Postponed
  • Carp Fest Postponed
  • Evelyn K. Davis Park Summer Programming Postponed
  • Free Fishing Fridays Postponed
  • Free Flicks Postponed
  • Milkweed Planting Postponed
  • Plant, Grow, Fly Postponed
  • Special Use Park Permits Canceled Through June 15
  • Swimming Lessons Canceled Through June 15
  • Trail Events Canceled Through June 15
  • Woodland Cemetery Tours Canceled Through June 15
  • Yoga in the Park Postponed

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: 05/19/2020

The pick up of large items has resumed but we ask that you follow these guidelines:
1. Put your bulk item on the curb by 7 a.m. on your normal collection day.
2. Our team will enter your address into our system for pick up.
3. Sticker your item(s) either the night before or by 7 a.m. on your next collection day (one week from when you put the item on the curb) and it will be picked up.
4. If your item is not collected, one week from initial curb placement, please call (515) 283-4950.

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

If you have cardboard that needs to be recycled, that won't fit into your cart, you can now 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.

Stay tuned as we will be announcing details of our June SCRUB event very soon. 

Residents are encouraged to stay home and 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 
On June 1, 2020, Neighborhood Inspections will begin junk, debris, inoperable and/or unlicensed vehicle inspections. Staff will send advisory notices to the property owners notifying them of the items that are not in compliance with City ordinances. The Neighborhood Inspectors will follow up these notices with re-inspections. Staff is working on setting up a process to have phone hearings. Once this process is established, Neighborhood Inspectors will begin issuing notices by certified mail to owners who do not bring their property into compliance. If a cleanup is not completed by the property owner, the City will do the cleanup and assess the costs.

Items found on the curb will be tagged and removed at the owners expense, unless they have a Public Works single item sticker.

Interior property inspections have been halted until June 15, 2020; however, emergency inspections and inspections of vacant units are being conducted. Administrators will evaluate if a longer suspension of interior inspection service is needed as more information about COVID-19 becomes available over time.

Housing Services
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. The Housing Services lobby will be open only for clients unable to submit information, rent or other charges by phone or 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.

DMMHA will be postponing annual inspections until June 15, 2020.  We will still be doing entry and emergency inspections when necessary.

Permit and Development Center - Construction Permits & Inspections
The Permit and Development Center is closed to the public in response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic, but permits continue to be processed electronically and inspections continue to be conducted. 

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