Home News Wednesday Afternoon News, April 10th

Wednesday Afternoon News, April 10th


Former Rotary International Vice President Speaks At Local Banquet

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Rotary Club celebrated its 100th anniversary as a local civic organization by holding an awards banquet Tuesday evening at the Willow Creek Golf Course Country Club. According to the featured key-note
speaker, Greg Podd, a former Rotary International Vice President, the Le Mars chapter is among an elite and unique group of Rotary organizations.
Podd informed the gathering of the more than 35,000 Rotary clubs worldwide, only 446 have achieved the status of celebrating 100 years as a continuous organization. Even more impressive for the Le Mars Rotary Clubis the fact
they have achieved the distinction of having 100 percent of its members contribute, or pledge, to the Paul Harris Foundation. Harris is credited with starting the Rotary International Organization. Podd says only about ten percent, or more specifically, 3,623 clubs of the more than 35,000 worldwide
have a 100 percent membership for the Paul Harris Foundation. Podd says the Le Mars Rotary Club obviously has had great leadership through the years to survive as an organization for 100 years, and to also have a 100 percent membership involvement in the Paul Harris Foundation.

Rotary’s primary goal is the worldwide eradication of polio. Podd says although it may still be a few years away, Rotary is making great strides and progress to achieving its goal of eliminating polio.

Podd says the challenge facing Rotary is to encourage more people to be members of the civic organization. It is a challenge facing nearly all civic organizations.

The former Rotary International vice president says Rotary has identified six other focal points which will be given additional attention in the coming years. He says the six points certainly follow the Rotary motto of “Service above Self.”

The Le Mars Rotary has 26 members.



Pork Producers Cancel World Pork Expo Due To Threat Of Swine Disease

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Concerns about the spread of Africa swine fever to the U.S. have led organizers to cancel the World Pork Expo scheduled for June at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines.
The National Pork Producers Council’s board of directors announced its decision Wednesday. The annual June event brings about 20,000 visitors to Des Moines, including people and exhibitors from regions of the world where the disease has been diagnosed and is spreading.
The council says African swine fever affects only pigs and presents no human health or food safety risks. There is no vaccine to treat the swine disease.
There is a swine show during the event, but no pigs from other countries were expected to participate.
Council spokesman Jim Monroe says the risk isn’t zero for U.S.
producers. For example, he says, some foreign visitor could unwittingly bring the virus along if his or her shoes were splattered with blood or feces from an infected animal.



Healthcare Administrator Found Dead At Home

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Investigators say an Iowa health care administrator found dead in her home died from “sharp force injuries” that were inflicted by an assailant.
Authorities have not made any arrests in the death of JoEllen Browning, the director of operating budgets at University of Iowa Health Care.
Browning, 65, was found dead April 5 in her Iowa City home, where she lived with her husband of 42 years, businessman Roy Browning. The couple has two adult children.
Police have released few details as the investigation continues. They have not said who called 911 to report Browning being unresponsive and have withheld audio of the call.
Fifteen to 20 officers from the Iowa City Police Department and Division of Criminal Investigation are investigating Browning’s death, which was ruled a homicide.
Clayton Schuneman, director of the Johnson County Medical Examiner’s office, says sharp force injuries are those caused by a sharp object such as a knife. He declined comment on whether the autopsy was able to identify the object used to harm Browning.



People Are Disappointed With Courthouse Design

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Some Des Moines officials say the initial design for the new federal courthouse downtown is a disappointment.
The reaction comes after a private meeting last month between city leaders and the General Services Administration, which is overseeing the $137 million riverfront project. City communications director Jen Schulte says city leaders had asked that the courthouse be designed to interact with the
Principal Riverwalk and make it inviting to pedestrians. Schulte told The Des Moines Register that those aspects either weren’t incorporated or were included with the caveat they could be engineered as the agency works to control the project’s budget.
The GSA pledged two weeks after the meeting to make several changes, including creating access to the riverwalk, incorporating publicly accessible green spaces and investigating ways to use public art.



Waterloo Man Charged With Raping And Beating Woman On Recreational Trail

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) – Prosecutors in northeastern Iowa have charged a former Waterloo man with viciously beating and raping a woman he ambushed on a trail in 2015.
The Courier reports that a judge set bond Wednesday at $1.5 million for 24-year-old Patrick Richard Burt, who was recently extradited from Aurora, Colorado, where he was arrested on an Iowa warrant in the case. Burt is charged with kidnapping, first-degree sexual assault and willful injury.
Black Hawk County Attorney Brian Williams says the victim was jogging on the Waterloo trail in July 2015 when she was attacked, beaten unconscious, dragged into nearby woods and raped. Passersby later found her semiconscious
with a broken nose, chipped teeth and other injuries.
Police say the attacker’s DNA was found on and collected from the victim. Authorities were alerted years later that a match had been found with Burt, who had his DNA collected following a 2017 arrest on unrelated charges.