IONA — A small town’s city hall that hasn’t undergone renovations in decades is getting a makeover thanks to a $50,000 donation.

Hamlet Homes, a company based in Utah, surprised the city of Iona with the big donation. More than 25 of the company’s employees came by bus Thursday morning from Utah to Iona to help replace the floors, paint walls, add wall coverings and add new furniture.

“They are going to be doing all new carpet, all new paint in the foyer area of the city building, which is a big deal because the city building is where anyone really comes when they first move into town — they do their water applications, their building permits – so it will be a good first impression I think for anyone that has to deal with the city,” said Keri West, city clerk and treasurer for the city of Iona.

The remodel includes removing an old corkboard with tacks inside the building to a state-of-the-art digital screen so residents can more easily learn about upcoming events and announcements. The front steps of city hall were also demolished and replaced due to the crumbling.

crumbling stairs
Old, crumbling steps outside of Iona City Hall. | Courtesy Keri West
demolition of stairs
The demolition of the steps outside of Iona City Hall. | Courtesy Nate Di Palma
new stairs
The new steps outside Iona City Hall. | Andrea Olson,

“I think we are all just grateful. We are really excited. It’s not too often that you have a company come in that just right from the get-go wants to make a difference. They just wanted to help us out and they have,” West said.

Hamlet Homes is expanding its operations into Idaho. The company bought property in the city of Iona recently and will be building single-family homes a few blocks away from city hall. The homes are called Elim Estates and is located near 4707 East Iona Road.

“Because we bought our first piece of property in Iona, we kind of wanted that to be our connection to the community. Iona is a small city. When we first met with the staff (from the city), we just loved them. We connected and we just really wanted to partner with them. They are a great city to work with,” said Jon Southern, COO with Hamlet Homes.

Southern explained that he wanted to give back in some way and wanted to begin a partnership. That’s how the idea of remodeling city hall came to be.

“We are excited to be here. We are excited to be a part of the community. We look for long-term relationships up here and we hope to become part of the Idaho Falls community for a long time,” Southern said.

According to West, the city of Iona has a population of close to 3,000 people.

Andrea Olson,
Andrea Olson,
Andrea Olson,
new furniture
Andrea Olson,

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