Home News Monday Afternoon News, April 1st

Monday Afternoon News, April 1st


Le Mars Community School District Kicks Off “Fill The Pillars” Fund Raising Campaign For Stadium Renovation Project

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Community School District is hold a fund raising campaign this week for the new stadium renovation. Entitled: “Fill the Pillars” Angie Catton, a member of the Le Mars Community Board of Education, says the effort is to make a final push for the donations.

Catton explains donor cards are located throughout the town at various businesses, allowing people to make a donation or pledge for the new stadium.

On Saturday, school officials will convene at Total Motors to tabulate the collected donations, and to specifically recognize those businesses, families, or individuals that have contributed to the stadium renovation.
Any amount of money can be donated to the “Fill the Pillars”, but to be listed on a plaque on the pillars, a minimum of $200 will be required.
Questions relating to the “Fill the Pillars” stadium renovation fund raising campaign can be directed to the Le Mars Community School District superintendent’s offices.



Le Mars Police Department Introduce New K9 Patrol Dog

(Le Mars) — A few weeks ago, the Le Mars city council had the opportunity to see the new dog selected to be a part of the Le Mars Police Department’s K-9 unit. “Ace” is a cross between a German Shepard and a Belgium Malinois.
Le Mars Police Officer Bob Rohmiller is working as the handler for “Ace.”
Rohmiller says the new addition to the Le Mars Police Department comes from a long pedigree of law enforcement canines.

Rohmiller says “Ace” is being trained for narcotics detection and suspect apprehension.

Although Ace is nearly full grown in terms of height, he is still a puppy with all the energy of a puppy. Rohmiller says it will take at least a year of training for the narcotic detection, and perhaps as long as a year and a half before Ace will be on patrol duty for suspect apprehension. Rohmiller has been given some guidance and advice from Le Mars Police Officer Mark Reed and
Plymouth County Sheriff’s Deputy Jacob Wingert, both of whom are law enforcement K-9 handlers. Once a week, Rohmiller takes Ace to Sioux City for additional training. Rohmiller says the training for Ace, the new K9 law enforcement dog, has to be like a game, and is rewarded when the dog acts

Rohmiller says he works with his dog for at least two hours every day. He describes what’s involved with training his dog to become a law enforcement patrol dog.

The Le Mars Police officer says it is always a gamble when training with young dogs as to whether the dog will eventually work as police patrol dog.

Rohmiller says he has always wanted to be a dog handler ever since he started as a police officer.

Obtaining a dog for police work can be expensive. However, the Le Mars Police Department held a fund raising campaign and was fortunate to receive several donations, as well as holding a raffle in order to pay for the dog, its training, and food and shelter supplies.

Ace’s personality is an energetic, curious puppy. Officer Rohmiller hopes that once Ace becomes certified, he will be sociable with younger children who may want to pet the dog, while still being able to attack a suspect upon command.



Sioux City Has Development Area Certified And Listed As Being “Shovel Ready”

(DES MOINES) — The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) announced today that the 27 Flags site in the Southbridge Business Park in Sioux City is the latest to achieve certification through the Iowa Certified Site Program. This site is the 25th in the state to be designated as project-ready for industrial development.
Debi Durham, IEDA and Iowa Finance Authority director says, “This is a very big win for Sioux City. Companies exploring expansion or new operations do not often have the luxury of dedicating substantial amounts of time to the site location process, so having a site available where all the development
questions have been asked and answered better positions the community to attract new investment”.
27 Flags is part of the Southbridge Business Park, located on the southern edge of Sioux City between the Missouri River and Interstate 29, and is ideal for large-scale industrial projects. The 27 Flags property includes nearly 120 acres  ready for development, with features including a new electric
substation, water treatment plant, access to Interstate 29 and a drop and pull rail yard served by Union Pacific Railroad.
Sioux City Mayor Bob Scott says, “We know being shovel-ready is critical.”
Scott says, “Sioux City has been a leader in business development, attracting both good-paying jobs and capital investment to the area. We are committed to the goal of creating new industrial sites with an eye on continued growth in the future.” 27 Flags is Sioux City’s second certified site, following the 250-acre Bridgeport West Industrial Park that was
certified by an earlier process and later sold to Seaboard Triumph Foods.



Iowa Business Council Issues Economic Outlook Survey Results

(Des Moines) — In the Iowa Business Council (IBC) quarterly economic outlook survey, members express economic optimism but challenges remain in attracting and retaining a quality workforce. This has been a consistent theme throughout the past year for IBC members, with nearly 70 percent of IBC members citing either engineering, IT or healthcare as key job positions
they are unable or struggling to fill within the state.
“This survey aligns with our 2019 Competitive Dashboard data which measures Iowa’s progress in five categories relative to other states; the lack of available and qualified workforce is threaded throughout every category,”
IBC Executive Director Georgia Van Gundy said. “As an answer to this challenge, the Iowa Business Council has brought together leaders from both the public and private sectors to identify potential initiatives to attract and retain people to our state.”



Governor Reynolds Appoints Two District Court Judges

(Des Moines) — Gov. Kim Reynolds announced her appointments of Gina Badding and Amy Moore as district court judges in Judicial Election District 2B.
Badding, of Carroll, Iowa, received her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Iowa. She currently practices law with Neu, Minnich, Comito, Halbur, Neu & Badding, P.C. in Carroll.
Moore, of Ames, Iowa, received her undergraduate degree from Iowa State University and her law degree from the Creighton University School of Law.
She currently serves as a part-time judicial magistrate in Story County and practices law with Mid-Iowa Mediation and Law PLLC.
Judicial Election District 2B includes Boone, Calhoun, Carroll, Greene, Hamilton, Hardin, Humboldt, Marshall, Pocahontas, Sac, Story, Webster, and Wright counties.



Two People Injured During Boone House Fire

BOONE, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say two people were injured in a central Iowa house fire that one of them reported by running to an emergency center.
Firefighters were sent around 4:30 a.m. Monday to the home in Boone and soon had the flames under control.
A fire official told station KCCI that a man ran from the burning house to the dispatch center less than a block away to report the fire. The man and a woman who lived in the home were taken to a hospital.
Names and other details haven’t been released. The fire cause is being investigated.



Prison Guard Suspended After Granting A Newspaper Interview

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – The Iowa Department of Corrections has suspended a prison guard for giving an interview to his hometown newspaper for a positive feature story about his life and work.
The Bloomfield Democrat, a weekly paper in southern Iowa, featured John Cox in a front-page story about how he inspires and teaches inmates at the Mount Pleasant Correctional Facility.
The newspaper publisher, Karen Spurgeon, had taught Cox music in his youth and was impressed by his passion for prison work after bumping into him in December. Cox agreed to an interview.
Prison leaders put Cox under investigation after the article was published, saying he violated work rules that require prior authorization for media interviews. Ultimately, they gave him a three-day suspension.
Cox and his union are appealing, arguing the discipline is an infringement on his free speech.



Altoona Man To Be Sentenced For Vehicular Homicide

NEWTON, Iowa (AP) – An Altoona man is scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday for vehicular homicide while driving drunk. Jasper County District Court records say 26-year-old Michael Roney was convicted March 19. He was charged after the Sept. 23, 2017 crash that killed 27-year-old Jeremy O’Connor, who lived in Colfax.