Home News Friday News, April 19th

Friday News, April 19th


Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies Held At New Police Headquarters

(Le Mars) — An estimated crowd of more than one thousand people visited the new Le Mars Police Department headquarters during the open house held yesterday. Police Chief Kevin Vande Vegte thanked the many people responsible for the new police station, including the city council, the late Scott Langel, and the current city administrator Jason Vacura. Vande Vegte says it was a long time coming before the police department was able to move to a new facility.

The police chief reminded the gathered crowd there was some shuffling of possible buildings for the new police headquarters, before city officials settled on the former Motor Inn auto dealership building.

City Administrator Jason Vacura informed the crowd there were a total of nearly 24 contractors that helped convert the auto dealership building into the state-of-the art police headquarters. Former police chief Stuart Dekkenga welcomed the visiting crowd as they entered the doors of the new facility, and thanked them for coming when they left. According to Dekkenga,
he never heard a negative word from anyone about the new facility, and everyone stated they were impressed with the building, and expressing a sense of community pride.
Surrounded by members of the Le Mars Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors, Mayor Dick Kirchoff, members of the city council, contractors, and a few of the senior police officers, Police Chief Vande Vegte cut the ribbon to formally acknowledge the opening of the new police station headquarters located on north Business Highway 75.



Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office Honored With Award For Use Of Stop Sticks

(Le Mars) — The Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office has received an award for its use of “Stop Sticks” during last December when the Iowa State Bank was robbed. You may recall, the two suspects that robbed the bank had fled the scene driving an U-Haul truck. Law enforcement officials gave chase to the U-Haul truck. The pursuit first headed westbound on county road C-38 and then the suspect vehicle turned south on county road K-18. Authorities attempted to stop the vehicle while initiating their lights and sirens, but the U-Haul failed to pull over. Speeds of the chase had reached 77 mph on the county roads. Plymouth County Sheriff’s Deputy Conner Delfs deployed stop sticks on the U-Haul near county road C-44 and K-18. Stop sticks are a
device that is used to deflate tires to bring dangerous pursuits to a halt.
All tires were deflated and the suspects were arrested. Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office turned the deployment to Stop Stick Ltd, the makers of the Stop Stick Deflation Device. On March 28th, Deputy Delfs was awarded the “Hit of the Month” winner for December. The use of the stop sticks is now in the running for the “Hit King” award for 2018.



Easter Egg Hunt Scheduled For Saturday

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars annual Easter Egg Hunt is scheduled for this Saturday at Cleveland Park. The festivities will get started at 10:30 a.m. with the Easter Bunny at the clock tower posing for photos. Then at 11:00 a.m. children will be allowed to find the eggs. The event is being sponsored by Primebank. Brad Pick says there will be plenty of eggs available for the
hundreds of children that attend the event.



Congressman Steve King To Hold Town Hall Meeting At Cherokee

(Washington DC)— Congressman Steve King has announced that he will be hosting a town hall meeting in Cherokee County on Tuesday, April 23rd. The town hall is open to the public and to the media. The town hall will be held in the Western Iowa Tech Community College (Cherokee Campus) auditorium from 12:00-
1:00 PM Central. WITCC is located in the city of Cherokee at 200 Victory Drive. King has pledged to hold a town hall in each county in the 4th Congressional District this year, and the Cherokee County town hall will be the 12th town hall King has hosted since January.



Grassley Comments On Mueller Report

(Washington) — Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley applauds Thursday’s release of the still-redacted version of the report investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Grassley, a Republican, says
tens of millions of taxpayer dollars were spent on the near-400-page report and he says it -should- be made public, with the exception of a few key areas.

Grassley says he will -not- join with Democratic leaders who are calling for special counsel Robert Mueller (MULL-er) to testify before Congress about the report he compiled over the past 22 months.

Grassley says parts of the report -do- need to be kept secret, like sections involving people who were questioned but who weren’t indicted. Those people could have their reputations “ruined,” Grassley says, if it came out they were investigated by Mueller. In addition, Grassley says sections of the
report that could jeopardize our nation’s security shouldn’t be published — or discussed by Mueller if he choses to testify before Congress.

During a news conference in Washington D-C, U-S Attorney General William Barr said the Mueller report found no “collusion” between the Russian government and the Trump campaign or any other Americans.



Census Report Shows Increases In Population For Polk and Dallas Counties – Declines In Clinton and Emmett Counties

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Census estimates show strong growth in the Des Moines metro area as well as the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City areas, but more than two-thirds of Iowa’s counties have lost population since 2010.
Polk County remained the most populous, growing by 56,572 residents since 2010 to 487,204 people as of July 1, 2018. That’s an increase of 13.1%.
Dallas County, which includes much of Des Moines’ western suburbs, grew by 36.4% to 90,180, making it among the nation’s fastest growing counties.
Linn County, which includes Cedar Rapids, grew by 6.9% to 225,909 to remain the second-largest county, and Scott County, home to Davenport, was third with 173,203.
Johnson County, which includes Iowa City, grew by 15.6% to 151,260.
Of Iowa’s 99 counties, 69 lost population.
Clinton County had the largest drop, losing 2,599 people. Emmett County lost 10.2% of its population for the state’s biggest rate decline.



Many Dairy Producers Struggling Financially

(Le Mars) — Many of this nation’s dairy farmers have been struggling financially, causing several of them deciding to quit the business.
There are becoming fewer dairy farms across the nation as milk prices continue to plummet. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Dairy Specialist for Northwest Iowa Fred Hall says unfortunately, the outlook for the dairy industry doesn’t hold too many bright spots.

Hall says it is not just the smaller size dairy operation that is suffering. The low prices have also forced many mid-size to larger dairy operations to quit. Hall says there is a small percentage of dairy farms that although are hurting because of the low milk prices, they are able to hang on, at least
for now. He says there is a wide number of dairy producers who may be able to survive if they can adapt their operations to the current conditions.

Hall says trade barriers have prevented the dairy industry from marketing milk products to many of our traditional foreign customers.

The Dairy Specialist says in addition to Mexico, China and the Pacific Rim nations had been good purchasers of U-S Dairy products, and still may hold the best opportunity for a reversal of the current trends.