Home News Friday Afternoon News, June 21st

Friday Afternoon News, June 21st


Sesquicentennial History Books Now Available

(Le Mars) — The last remaining Le Mars History Books that have been printed for the town’s Sesquicentennial event are now available, and can be picked up at the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce offices. Mary Reynolds says there are 246 books to be picked up. The Chamber office is open today until 5:00 p.m.



Iowa’s Unemployment Rate Holds Steady

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa’s unemployment rate remained stuck at 2.4% in May, just where it’s been for nearly a year.
Iowa Workforce Development reported Friday that the rate hasn’t budged since July 2018. Iowa’s rate is tied with New Hampshire for the third lowest in the U.S., behind Vermont and North Dakota.
The total number of Iowa residents with jobs in May rose by 3,200 from April. The number of unemployed residents also edged up by 400 people.
Iowa’s rate compares to a national unemployment rate of 3.6% in May.



State Employee Union Concerned About Staff At Psychiatric Facility

INDEPENDENCE, Iowa (AP) – A state workers union is criticizing what it says is the state’s lack of response to attacks on at least four employees at the state psychiatric care facility in eastern Iowa.
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees says assaults over the past two weeks at the Independence Mental Health Institute include a nurse punched in the nose and three residential treatment workers who suffered head or neck injuries.
Union President Danny Homan said in a Wednesday news release that “a safety crisis taking place for the employees, and the state of Iowa is showing no urgency to address it.”
Iowa Human Services Department Matt Highland says workplace injuries at the institute are down from last year and says treatment provided to aggressive patients is often reviewed to help reduce violent incidents.  It’s the same facility from which nurse Tina Suckow was fired days after her federally entitled medical leave expired. Her request for time off without pay was denied. A patient beat Suckow with his fists last October.



Flooded Rivers Are Dropping, But More Rains Could Cause Additional Flooding

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – The continued threat of rain and higher-than-normal reservoir releases into the Missouri River will hamper the draining of flooded fields and delay repairs to many damaged levees.
Officials with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National
Weather Service said Thursday during a news conference that although water levels on the river have dropped below flood stage in most places, rain over the next week could cause parts of the river to rise as much as 2 feet (0.61
meters) from Rulo, Nebraska, to where it meets the Mississippi River in St. Louis.
Increased reservoir releases are also keeping swamped land from drying out. The Corps reiterated Thursday that releases from Gavins Point Dam on the Nebraska-South Dakota border will remain at 75,000 cubic feet (2,124 cubic meters) per second until next Thursday, when officials plan to drop
that amount to 70,000 cubic feet (1,982 cubic meters) per second. That’s still about twice the normal amount for this time of year.