Preparations underway for presidential visit

President Obama will speak at the Nelson Pioneer Farm Museum in Oskaloosa Tuesday.

The city of Oskaloosa is preparing for President Obama's visit to Nelson Pioneer Farm at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Crews were on site Monday making preparations, but due to tight security, we could neither get footage of the area, nor speak to anyone on site. The Oskaloosa Police Department also declined to comment for now on how they will handle traffic and street closures.

This sort of security is typical when it comes to a presidential visit, as Ottumwa Police Chief Jim Clark remembers all too well.

"We actually had, I believe, about everyone working - all of our officers working," Chief Clark said. "It was a significant expense in overtime, however, how often - for here in Southeast Iowa - how often do you have the President of the United States come to town? So it was worth it and I think it brought a lot of people into the community and helped expose some of our issues to the President and it was well worth any expense it may have caused the city."

The visit will be big for Oskaloosa as well; Republican, Democrat or otherwise. Residents said it's important for every American to be involved in the political process and be engaged during campaign stops like this one.

"I don't think there's ever been a more important election than this one," said Karen Converse, an Oskaloosa resident and employee of the town's Re/Max. "Because after this one, it's going to determine the direction we go. I am really concerned about the debt. I think the direction we go with the debt is going to be crucial to the younger generation."

The president will visit Marshalltown and Waterloo for similar grassroots events on Tuesday, and will be joined by the First Lady in Dubuque and Davenport on Wednesday.