Home News Friday News, September 4th

Friday News, September 4th


Le Mars Community Board Of Education Approves Renovation Contract For Baseball-Softball Diamond Complex

(Le Mars) — During last evening’s special Le Mars Community Board of Education meeting, members of the school board approved a bid for renovation for the softball and baseball complex, even though the lowest bid did come in several thousands of dollars over the architect’s estimate. There were two bids submitted for the school board’s consideration. L&L Builders offered a base bid of $754,300 and Wiltgen Construction submitted their bid of $640,000. The school board accepted the contract offer by Wiltgen Construction, with the stipulation that School Superintendent Dr. Steven Webner look at possible ways to reduce some expenditures. In addition to the base bids, both contractors also offered a second alternative bid which would
include a press box for both ball diamonds. L&L Builders’ alternative bid was listed at $163,300 and Wiltgen Construction’s alternative bid for the addition of press boxes was given as $130,800. The school board on its motion, decided not to accept either construction company’s alternative bid for the press box, and to hold off on that aspect of construction until a later date. Members of the school board inquired as to why the bids were
several thousand dollars above the initial cost estimate, and Dr. Webner says when he discussed the issue with members of CMBA architect firm, they indicated it was because supplies are in short supply due to so many storms that have hit the across the nation. In other action, the school board voted down the request for three students wanting to have open enrollment and
attend the Hinton Community School District.




USDA Secretary Perdue Visits Iowa Farms To View Derecho Storm Crop Damage

(Des Moines) — U. S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue visited Iowa Thursday and has taken an official step to make emergency federal loans available to farm operations that were significantly damaged by last month’s derecho.

Perdue spoke at a gathering on a farm near Radcliffe where engineered wetlands have been installed. Earlier in the day, Perdue took an aerial tour of damaged fields in Hardin County.

The secretary’s declaration names 18 of the hardest
hit counties as primary natural disaster areas. He told reporters more counties may qualify once financial assessments are completed. Crop losses must reach a 30 percent threshold. Most farmers already have crop insurance to cover losses.

Perdue says he’ll contact executives in the crop insurance industry to discuss those concerns. Dennis Friest
lives southeast of Radcliffe and estimates the derecho hit his farm with 80 to 90 mile an hour winds.

He’s dealing with some damaged fields — and uncertainty about his crop insurance.

The U-S Ag Secretary’s PRIMARY disaster declaration covers 18 counties as well as the 24 counties that are adjacent to those 18, since storms do not follow county boundaries. Farmers in those 42 counties may apply for Farm Service Agency emergency loans. The loans can cover property losses or be used to refinance debt.




Ag Secretary Says China Trying To Meet Trade Deal Obligations.

(Radcliffe, IA) — A new U-S-D-A estimate indicates federal payments will account for more than one-third of farm income this year as the agency spends at least 37 billion dollars extra to make up for losses in the ag economy.
U-S Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue was asked during a stop in Radcliffe Thursday if that level of government spending is sustainable. Perdue says no farmer in the country wants to work for a government check — but he says the president promised farmers new federal payments when trade tensions with
China escalated and commodity prices dropped. President Trump announced in January he’d reached “phase one” of a trade deal with China which cut some U-S tariffs on Chinese imports, with the expectation that the Chinese would buy 80 billion dollars in agricultural products by the end of 2021. Perdue says the announcement earlier this week that China had signed agreements to buy one-point-seven million metric tons of U-S corn and 120-thousand tons of soybeans shows that China’s trying to do what it can to fulfill those ag import obligations under phase one.



Des Moines Schools Have Hearing On Lawsuit Against State

(Des Moines, IA) — A hearing is set for this morning (Friday) in Polk County District Court on the request by the Des Moines Public Schools for an injunction to put a hold on the state’s rejection of its plan to begin the school year through primarily virtual learning. The state requires schools to conduct at least 50 percent of their classes in-person. The district informed the Iowa High School Athletic Association and the Iowa Girls’ High
School Athletic Union Thursday that it will suspend sports and other activities unless the court sides with them. The sports teams will be allowed to compete today (Friday) and this weekend. The two sports associations say they will follow the state guidelines and not allow competition from schools that don’t follow the state guidelines for in-person learning.




Man Shot Twice By Coralville Police Officer

(Coraville, IA) — Coralville police were called to check on the report of a suicidal man Thursday morning. They say he threatened to hurt himself and officers as they talked to him over a period of around an hour. The man appeared on the verge of coming out of the home — but officers say he then
went inside and came out of the garage and pointed a rifle at them. An officer fired two shots at the man and hit him in the chest with both. The man was taken to the hospital, but police did not have a condition report.
The man’s name and the name of the officer are not being released as the investigation continues.




Man Shot To Death By Bettendorf Police Officer

(Bettendorf, IA) — The Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation is reviewing a shooting by a Bettendorf police officer which left a man dead.
Police were called to a residence where a man was reported to be holding a knife to the throat of a four-year-old. Several officers responded and found a 53-year-old man holding a sharp object to the throat of the child. An officer shot the man once and he died. Police say several children were present. The dead man’s name is not being released until his family is notified. The officer has been placed on administrative leave while the D-C-I
investigates, and his name has not yet been released.