Comprehensive Plan Update Public Survey

The public input survey for the Vision Van Meter 2040 Comprehensive Plan update project is now live. Please use this link to participate and provide us with your your valuable input.

Board and Commission Vacancies

The City of Van Meter has numerous boards and commissions that enable residents to serve in a capacity to assist the City Council with the government of the City. Some of these boards and commissions serve as advisory committees to staff and the Council while others serve as the administrative entities for their respective departments. Please use this application to apply to any board or commission that aligns with your interests. City Hall can be contacted for additional information or you are welcome to review the statutes for these boards and commissions contained within the City Code of Ordinances found under our documents tab on the City’s website.

Van Meter Community Visioning Seeks Focus Group Volunteers

Van Meter kicks off 2019 community visioning program

Van Meter Steering Committee –
Aaron Brewer, Trees Forever, 319-373-0650

Van Meter is participating in the 2019 Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program. Community Visioning is a transportation enhancement planning process that serves Iowa communities under 10,000 in population.

The program helps community volunteers envision aesthetic and ecological improvements along roadsides and related landscapes by blending environmental stewardship with community improvement projects. Van Meter is one of ten communities selected to participate in this award-winning program.

At its initial meetings, the Van Meter visioning committee learned public involvement techniques that they will use in the visioning process to assess local resources and identify community needs. The information gathered will be used to develop a transportation concept plan.

The next step in the process will be a focus group workshop on March 2, 2019, from 9-12:30 at the Van Meter School, 520 First Avenue, Van Meter. Residents will be invited to share their ideas about transportation needs and opportunities in Van Meter in a small group setting. For further information about participating in a focus group or the overall visioning process, please contact the steering committee at or Aaron Brewer, Trees Forever field coordinator, at 319-373-0650.

The Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program is sponsored by the Iowa Department of Transportation in partnership with Iowa State University Extension Landscape Architecture and Trees Forever, an Iowa-based nonprofit organization with a mission to plant trees and care for the environment.

Van Meter Visioning Committee Seeks Residents’ Input

Steering Committee –, AARON BREWER, Trees Forever, (319)373-0650, ext 114

VAN METER, IA (1/3/19) – Van Meter has been chosen to participate in this year’s Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program. Iowa State University is conducting a survey to learn residents’ opinions on how to improve the Van Meter’s landscape through transportation enhancements. The goal of the project is to develop a landscape plan that will graphically illustrate the vision of the community. Input from residents is an important part of this process and ideas about community design and enhancement are valuable to Van Meter visioning committee.
Survey packets were mailed to randomly selected residents in Van Meter in December. If you received a packet, it’s not too late to complete the questionnaire and mail it back using the enclosed postage-paid envelope. Additional packets will be mailed to those who have not already responded this week.

In addition to the survey, the Van Meter visioning committee will be meeting regularly to discuss transportation enhancement plans for Van Meter. The committee will also host a design workshop this summer. These meetings are open to all residents.

To learn more about participating in the visioning process, please contact the steering committee at or Aaron Brewer, Trees Forever field coordinator, at (319)373-0650, ext 114.

The Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program is sponsored by the Iowa Department of Transportation in partnership with Iowa State University Extension Landscape Architecture and Trees Forever.

Van Meter Selected as 2018-2019 Visioning Community

The City of Van Meter has been selected as a Visioning Community for the 2018-2019 cohort through the Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program. Here is a brief overview of what the program seeks to accomplish. Be sure to follow along with out progress at our community page.

The Community Visioning Program integrates landscape planning and design with sustainable action to empower community leaders and volunteers in making sound, meaningful decisions about the local landscape. Anchored by a committee of local residents, communities work closely with technical experts from Trees Forever, a private-sector landscape architect, and the Iowa State University Department of Landscape Architecture to create a transportation enhancement plan reflecting the values and identity of the community. Throughout the process, the committee identifies and investigates the physical and cultural dimensions of landscape issues, sets goals for change, and develops implementation strategies for meeting community goals. Successful completion of the visioning process results in a transportation enhancement plan and implementation strategies that empower communities to build meaningful townscapes, step by step, as resources become available.



Tax Abatement Available

On April 20, 2017 the Van Meter City Council adopted Resolution 2017-20 which approved and adopted an Urban Revitalization Plan. At the same meeting the City Council adopted Ordinance 257 which designated all real property contained within the incorporated limits of the City of Van Meter, as of April 1, 2017, to be within the City’s Urban Revitalization Area.

The Plan establishes property tax exemptions (tax abatement) for new value added across all property classifications as a result of renovations, additions, or new construction. The abatement is offered according to the following schedules:

For commercial and industrial property the abatement applies for 3 years at 100%.

For residential property (single or multi-family) the abatement applies for 5 years as follows: Year 1 – 100%, Year 2 – 100%, Year 3 – 100%, Year 4 – 75%, Year 5 – 50%.

It is important to note and understand:

1) Improvements must increase the actual value of the property by at least 15%.

2) The abatement is not automatic. It must be applied for and granted by BOTH the City Council AND the Dallas County Assessor’s Office. However, only one application is necessary. After approval, the City will forward the application to the County Assessor.

3) An application must be submitted to City Hall prior to February 1 of the assessment year for which the abatement is first claimed.

4) Valuation cannot be removed from the County’s assessment of a property AND property taxes must always be paid against the existing assessed value of a property. So get your application filed early when starting a project.

You can access the full text of the Urban Revitalization Plan here along with the application here.

Urban Revitalization Plan

Tax Abatement Application

If you have questions please call City Hall at (515) 996-2644.

Habitat Rehab Projects

The City partners with Dallas County Habitat for Humanity to do housing rehabilitation projects in Van Meter. If you qualify for Habitat’s program the City will pay for exterior home repairs, safety and accessibility improvements, weatherization, and other qualifying projects that preserve and/or improve property valuations and home-ownership in Van Meter.  To qualify you must own your home and your family must earn less than 60% of the median family income (MFI) for Dallas County based on the number of individuals in your household. Here are the income thresholds based on the number of people in your household:

1 person
60% MFI
2 person
60% MFI
3 person
60% MFI
4 person
60% MFI
5 person
60% MFI
6 person
60% MFI
7 person
60% MFI
8 person
60% MFI
$32,340 $36,960 $41,580 $46,140 $49,860 $53,580 $57,240 $60,960

If you qualify fill out this application and submit it confidentially to Dallas County Habitat for Humanity 2200 East Euclid Ave, PO Box 716, Des Moines IA 50303.

Van Meter recognized as a first in Iowa’s Certified Site Program

IEDA_CertifiedSiteOne of the fastest growing trends in the site selection business is the demand for certified industrial sites.  As companies continue to put pressure on the time allowed for making a location decision as well as the time required to start construction and complete the project, the need for certified sites increases.  The location decision process demands available sites, and those sites need to be ready for development.  Companies looking to build new facilities want sites that are shovel-ready and relatively risk free.

In an effort to capitalize on this trend, the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) rolled out its certified site program in May 2012.  This is an independent, third-party certification program which uses the nationally recognized site selection firm of McCallum Sweeney Consulting (MSC) as the sole certifying agent.  MSC has designed a program based on a combination of industry needs as well as Iowa’s targeted industries and natural assets.

McCallum Sweeney Consulting, out of Greenville, SC was chosen based on their experience as site selectors as well as their groundbreaking work with mega site certification for the Tennessee Valley Authority.  They bring more than 70 years of combined senior staff experience to the program.

The program objective is to develop a portfolio of certified sites that will make Iowa more competitive in site selection projects.  Certification benefits include effective pro-active marketing; prepares the community for better re-active marketing; educates the developer on the site’s strengths and weaknesses; speeds up the development schedule by having due diligence completed.


Watch Governor Branstad announce the Certification here:

Why You Want To Join Van Meter

Brochure CoverLooking to move to the Greater Des Moines area? With a quality school, family recreation, and a community that is united, Van Meter has a lot to offer. Find out more about why Van Meter is the next best place for you and your family here!