Donlin Defeats Dembinski In Le Mars City Council Race
(Le Mars) – In yesterday’s Le Mars City Council election, it was retired Floyd Valley Administrator Mike Donlin who was able to pick up the victory over Dan Dembinski for the vacant At-Large position.
Donlin won with an easy margin with the unofficial results show Donlin with 521 votes, or 64.08 percent to Dembinski’s 292 votes, or 35.92 percent. Mayor Dick Kirchoff was able to retain his position. Kirchoff ran unopposed and picked up 727 votes, or 96 percent. Steve Wick also ran unopposed and was re-elected as the Ward 2 city council member with 354 votes, or 100 percent. The three
incumbent candidates seeking re-election for a trustee position with Floyd Valley Healthcare were all re-elected. Ralph Klemme, Dana Schuster, and Janelle Bixeman all retained their positions.
Catton And Plathe Elected To Le Mars Community Board Of Education
(Le Mars) — As for the Le Mars Community Board of Education election, Incumbent candidate Angela Catton was able to retain her position as a director with the Le Mars Community School District by taking the top number of votes in the three-way race for two positions on the school board. Catton received 770 votes, or 39.79 percent. Taking the other At-Large Board of Education
position was Kyle Plathe who received 739 votes, or 38.19 percent. Jane Arnold and Makenzie Lang both had unopposed races for District 3 and District 5 respectfully for positions with the Le Mars Community Board of Education. Both were able to win their positions with Arnold securing 986 votes, or 99 percent, and Lang picked up 998 votes, also 99 percent.
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De Haan Re-elected As Orange City Mayor
(Orange City) — Looking at the results of the Orange City mayor race, in what was described as a heated campaign pitting townspeople against each other, mainly over the issue of gay and lesbian rights, Orange City residents overwhelmingly re-
elected Mayor Deb De Haan against her rival Kurt Korver. De Haan won easily by capturing 1,813 votes, or 76 percent to Korver’s 566 votes, or 23 percent.
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King Believes He Will Be Back On House Committees
(Le Mars) — Its been since January following an article that appeared in the New York Times that Iowa Republican Congressman Steve King was removed from all House committees. But, the often controversial, 4th District House member, says he expects to be placed back on committees sometime in the near future. King was in Le Mars Monday and told KLEM news that he has had conversations with the House Republican Leadership to change his status.
King says there have only been a few other instances when Congressional members were stripped of their committee assignments, and the reasons were they were found guilty of crimes.
King says he has never been charged with any crime, and he says what he said has since been proven to be true.
King says if the action stands, then the right for freedom of speech will be jeopardized.
The Iowa Republican says he will continue to “put the heat on the leadership.”
Government Insurance Agency Refuses To Show Settlement Cases
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – An Iowa government insurance program under fire for spending lavishly on out-of-state travel says it would cost $22,000 for the public to see how it’s been using money to settle recent legal cases.
The Iowa Communities Assurance Pool, which provides insurance to counties, cities and other local governments, is refusing to disclose its settlement agreements without that payment.
Settlements are public under Iowa law, and The Associated Press requested those that ICAP negotiated for its members since 2018. Board Chairman Jody Smith first claimed the settlements weren’t ICAP records, even though they release the pool from liability.
He later reversed course after AP protested. But he said it would take an employee 439 hours – more than 10 weeks of work – to find the settlements at a $50 per-hour charge.
Some ICAP members have argued the pool is too quick to settle lawsuits. One recent case involved a $250,000 payout to an arrestee whose leg was broken by an Iowa Falls officer.
After an AP investigation, ICAP board members are reconsidering their longstanding practice of having public meetings at resorts in Florida and Michigan during peak vacation times.
Supreme Court Puts On The Brakes For Environmental Lawsuit Over Water Quality
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The Iowa Supreme Court has put on hold a lawsuit by environmental groups that claims the state isn’t doing enough to control farm pollution of a major river used for drinking water and recreation.
An order signed Monday by Justice Edward Mansfield means the court will consider whether to uphold or reverse a district court judge’s decision to allow the lawsuit to move forward.
The state argues that courts traditionally do not intervene or attempt to put on trial legislative and executive action that involves a political question and the court should dismiss the case.
The lawsuit filed in March by Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement and Food & Water Watch contends the state is violating its public trust obligation to ensure clean drinking water sourced from the Raccoon River.
19 Year Old Found Guilty Of Manslaughter
NEW HAMPTON, Iowa (AP) – A 19-year-old man charged with first-degree murder in northeast Iowa has been found guilty of a lesser crime.
Winneshiek County court records say Dalton Adam, of Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, was convicted Monday of voluntary manslaughter. His sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 26. The trial had been moved to Chickasaw County.
He and his friend Jacob Seelinger had been charged after the July 2018 attack on 46-year-old David Hansen. Adam said during his testimony that Hansen punched him after punching Seelinger. Prosecutors say Hansen confronted the pair as they damaged property outside his Decorah home. Hansen was the boyfriend of Seelinger’s mother.
Adam testified that he punched back and knocked down Hansen, who cracked his head on concrete. Adam acknowledged that he and Seelinger kicked and punched Hansen as he lay helpless.
Seelinger’s been convicted of second-degree murder and has been sentenced to up to 50 years in prison.
Former Hotel Employee Given Probation For Use Of Customer Credit Cards
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – Another former employee has been given probation for using guests’ credit cards for a scam at a Sioux City hotel.
Woodbury County court records say 36-year-old Sandra Lalumendre was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison, suspended, and five years of probation. She’d pleaded guilty to one felony count of theft. Prosecutors dropped a credit card fraud charge in return.
Court documents say that from May 14 through Sept. 8 last year, Lalumendre and Ethan Ehlers fraudulently overcharged guests’ credit cards at the Howard Johnson hotel in downtown Sioux City. They’d then force refunds and split the money. The documents say the total was more than $32,700.
Ehlers has been sentenced to three years of probation.
The two have been ordered to jointly pay $10,000 in restitution to the hotel.
Warren County Voters Say “No” To New Courthouse
INDIANOLA, Iowa (AP) – A proposal to spend an additional $3.5 million to build a Warren County courthouse and justice center has fallen short of approval.
Officials say nearly 56% of voters supported the measure Tuesday, but it needed 60% of the votes to pass.
Warren County Supervisor Aaron DeKock says the result disappointed him, but the project still will go back out to bid in January.
Voters approved $29.9 million for the courthouse and justice center in August 2018. The project has been stalled since construction bids came back $7 million over budget.
The old courthouse and jail have been torn down.
Six People Escape House Fire At Runnells
RUNNELLS, Iowa (AP) – Iowa officials say six people, including children, have escaped a house fire in Runnells.
Polk County Sheriff’s Deputy Heath Osberg told KCCI the fire broke out Tuesday morning. Several agencies responded, and Osberg says one person was taken to a hospital. Others were treated for minor injuries, including smoke inhalation.
Camp Township Fire Chief Craig Thompson says the fire began in the kitchen.
Runnells is about 15 miles (24.14 kilometers) southeast of Des
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.