Catholic Bishop Walker Nickless Visits Gehlen Catholic School
(Le Mars) — Bishop Walker Nickless of the Sioux City Diocese paid a visit to Gehlen Catholic school Monday morning to answer questions of sixth graders. The bishop was invited by Gehlen Catholic’s religion teacher Kyle Marugg. The group of sixth graders asked Bishop Nickless questions about his upbringing, as well as life as a bishop.
Some of the questions by the Gehlen sixth graders were direct and poignant relating to abortion, prayers, reconciliation, and other teachings of the Catholic church.
The Catholic Bishop was also asked about the church’s role with politics.
Bishop Nickless was also asked about eating fish during Lent. He admitted that as the son of a meat butcher, he doesn’t enjoy eating fish, and it can become a sacrifice for a Catholic bishop priest.
Nickless also met with Gehlen Catholic fifth grade boys during their “Man Cave” period. He says its important for boys at that age to begin to understand what is expected of a man, and what men should do.
Nickless says he makes an effort to visit all 16 Catholic schools within the Sioux City Diocese, especially during National Catholic Schools Week which falls at the end of January.
Bishop Nickless Says People Want To Move On Beyond Catholic Priests Sex Abuse Scandal
(Le Mars) — A little more than a week has past since the Sioux City Diocese had announced publicly the names of 33 priests that were involved with various sex abuse scandals. KLEM news asked Bishop Walker Nickless during his visit to Le Mars on Monday about the public’s reaction since that announcement.
Nickless says the reaction has been supportive, and for most people they want to move beyond the sexual abuse news.
Plymouth County Supervisors To Discuss Hinton Drainage District With Iowa Dept. Of Transportation Official
(Le Mars) — Plymouth County Board of Supervisors will meet this morning at the county courthouse boardroom beginning at 9:30 a.m. The supervisors are expected to name Delana Ihrke to the Plymouth County Compensation Commission. They will hear from Darwin Herbst on seeking approval of a minor subdivision in Stanton township, as well as Surveyor Dave Wlilberding is scheduled to appear before the county governing board seeking approval of Union Center subdivision in Union Township. The supervisors will accept the construction bid for the paving project of 150th Street between Highway 60 and Marble Avenue which passes by the county landfill. County engineer Tom Rohe will update the supervisors on various bridge and culvert construction projects. The supervisors are scheduled to discuss Plymouth County Economic Development. Acting as the Plymouth County Drainage Board, the supervisors will discuss the Hinton Drainage District with Shane Tymkowicz with the Iowa Department of Transportation.
Judge Delays Trial Date For Sioux City Man Accused Of Killing Roommate
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A judge has rescheduled the trial of a Sioux City man accused of killing his roommate.
Woodbury County District Court records say 39-year-old Abdiqadar Sharif had been set to go on trial next Tuesday. He’s pleaded not guilty to a charge of second-degree murder in the Oct. 28 slaying of 40-year-old Guled Nur.
The records say the defense and prosecution asked for more time to prepare for the trial, so last week the judge set a new starting date of July 30.
Prosecutors say Sharif stabbed and kicked Nur after an altercation broke out at their apartment.
Health Official Says It Is Still Flu Season
(Des Moines) — The Iowa Department of Public Health reports the number of flu deaths in Iowa continues to increase. Deputy State Epidemiologist Ann Garvey says six new deaths were reported in the last week.
She says you can take one big step to keep yourself from getting the flu.
Doctor Garvey says the warm up and melting snow is not an indication the flu season is coming to an end.
There were 270 flu deaths in the last flu season, but doctor Garvey says it is tough to make a comparison this year until the season is finally done.
You may think you can escape the flu by heading out of state for spring break. Garvey says that isn’t the case.
She says another key thing to remember is — if you get the flu — keep it to yourself.
Garvey says you should also not take that spring break trip if you are sick, as you risk spreading the flu to a lot of other people.
Des Moines University To Move
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A Des Moines medical school has bought land in West Des Moines and intends to move to the suburban site.
Des Moines University announced Monday in a news release that it planned to move the campus to a 90-acre site on the southern edge of West Des Moines.
The private university has been at its current 24-acre site, in a
largely residential area just west of downtown, since 1972. The school didn’t provide a timeline for the move.
The university has recently been in a dispute with neighbors over plans to add parking spaces and a generator.
Ottumwa Construction Company Fined For Employee Death
MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) – An Iowa safety regulator is blaming a company for not adequately training a worker who was killed in a Marshalltown construction accident.
The Iowa Occupational Safety and Health Administration is proposing to fine Bridge City Construction, of Ottumwa, nearly $3,900. The Marshalltown Times-Republican reports that 37-year-old Bridge City employee Chris Ehrenhard, died in a December accident at the Marshalltown Co. construction
The agency says the way Ehrenhard was operating an aerial lift pinned him against a beam and controls of the aerial lift, causing fatal injuries.
The agency says Bridge City did not provide effective training to employees regarding hazards that were associated with the job site, such as ground conditions and overhead hazards.
Bridge City Construction owner Jason Blunt has declined to comment about the proposed fine. It’s unclear whether he will fight the penalty.
Iowa Maintains Lowest Unemployment Rate
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa’s unemployment rate remained at 2.4 percent in January, leaving the state tied for the lowest jobless rate in the country.
Iowa Workforce Development announced Monday that the rate was unchanged even as the numbered of unemployed people rose slightly to 40,600. The number of working Iowans also increased to 1.654 million in January.
Iowa’s unemployment rate compares to 2.8 percent in January 2018.
The rate leaves Iowa tied with New Hampshire for the lowest percentage of unemployed, just ahead of North Dakota and Vermont.
The national unemployment rate in January was 4 percent.
Mason City Woman Pleads Guilty To Stealing Prescription Medicine
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – A Mason City woman accused of stealing prescription drugs and violating patient confidentiality laws has pleaded guilty.
Mason City station KIMT reports that Samantha Rogers also pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court in Cedar Rapids to making false statements related to health care matters. Prosecutors dropped other charges in return for her pleas.
A criminal complaint says Rogers is a registered nurse and occupational therapist and that the incidents occurred in Cerro Gordo County.
Authorities say Rogers stole medications from co-workers. Authorities also say Rogers accessed medical records to find patient addresses and then would show up at their homes, posing as a public health worker who was recovering unused medications.
Correction Officers Assaulted By Inmates
NEWTON, Iowa (AP) – The Iowa Corrections Department says two correctional officers were assaulted by an inmate at the Newton Correctional Facility.
The department says the inmate became combative when the guards began putting restraints on him around 6 p.m. Monday. One officer was punched in the head and bitten, and the other officer suffered minor injuries while trying to restrain the inmate.
The department says the guards were treated at the prison and says the inmate didn’t seem to have suffered “any notable injuries.” The names of those involved were not released.
Former Prison Guard Receives Settlement
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A state board has agreed to pay a former prison guard $2.3 million as settlement for discrimination and retaliation she says she suffered after filing a sexual harassment case against the state.
The state paid Kristine Sink $1.65 million last month to settle the
sexual harassment case, and the Iowa attorney general recommended settling the second retaliation case.
The State Appeal Board on Monday approved the settlement but only after State Treasurer Michael Fitzgerald complained that board members are not informed enough about some settlements.
He complained about a settlement last month with two women from the Iowa Finance Authority who were paid $4.15 million after allegations IFA Director Dave Jamison sexually harassed them.
Emails obtained by The Associated Press indicate the settlement was reached in discussions with Gov. Kim Reynolds’ attorney in the days before the November election.
Solicitor General Jeff Thompson says the decision to settle the IFA cases had nothing to do with politics and was done in the state’s best interest.
Underground Electrical Transmission Line Being Proposed
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A proposed underground transmission line would carry electricity generated mostly by wind turbines in Iowa to the Chicago area.
The company behind the $2.5 billion project, Direct Connect
Development Co., said Monday that it has lined up three major investors to back the project. It could be operational in 2024 if regulators approve.
Direct Connect plans to bury the transmission line in land that runs along existing Canadian Pacific railroad tracks. That greatly reduces the number of landowners Direct Connect would have to deal with.
A similar proposal from a different company for an overhead
transmission line was withdrawn in 2016 after landowners raised concerns.
That Rock Island Clean Line was supposed to run from northwest Iowa into Illinois.