Thursday News, May 24
Le Mars Native Involved in Search and Rescue Unit
(Le Mars) -- A Le Mars native has a rather unique part-time job. Eric Fox, is a full-time Sioux City fire official, but when disaster strikes, he is part of the 70-member Iowa Task Force Urban Search and Rescue team.
Fox spoke to line crews of Mid-American Energy during a training session on Wednesday. He says they go to work when the Governor issues a disaster proclamation, be it flooding, tornado, or anytime people are in danger and in need of rescuing, as was the case last week when an individual found himself stuck in a cave in eastern Iowa. Fox says he and his team not only perform different types of rescues, but they often have to stabilize a structure following a disaster in order for a rescue or other work to be performed.
Fox explains why it is important for Mid-American Energy crews to know and understand the role of the Urban Search and Rescue task force.
The Iowa Task Force Urban Search and Rescue units are based in Cedar Rapids and in Sioux City, and part of the search and rescue team comprise of three dogs.
Fox says the search and rescue team responded to the Boy Scout Little Sioux Camp tornado, Cedar Rapids Flooding, Mapleton tornado, and also they were called to assist with the Joplin, Missouri tornado.
No Agreement Reached Between Casino and MRHD
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - The owner of the Argosy riverboat casino in Sioux City is looking at options if contract talks fail with the nonprofit group that holds the casino license.
Penn National Gaming and Missouri River Historical Development are trying to negotiate an extension of a 20-year operating agreement that expires in July. They agree the boat should be
replaced with a land-based casino, but there's no consensus on the distribution of casino revenue.
The nonprofit group has filed a lawsuit seeking to establish the right to look at other operators.
The Sioux City Journal reports the company in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission says if that happens, it may contest the group's request, may participate in the process or it may seek another charitable sponsor.
Road Closed Due to Railroad Crossing Repairs
(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Secondary Road Department is closing County road C-70 from Highway 75 to county road K-42 in order for the Union Pacific Railroad to replace the railroad crossing. The detour will be on Highway 75 north to Hinton then east on C-60 to K-42 and then south again on K-42. The replacement for the railroad crossing is expected to take all day to complete.
Gehlen Catholic Calls for Student Registrations
(Le Mars) -- Parents wanting their children to attend Gehlen Catholic Schools for the 2012-2013 school year are reminded to turn in their registration forms to the Business Office no later than Friday, June 1st. Registration packets include a variety of information including, but not limited to tuition, lunch, activity passes, concussion form, and individual J-Club memberships. If you have questions, you are to contact Mindy Scheitier or Jackie Sitzmann in the Business Office.
State Report Says Workers Lack Job Skills
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A new state report says many workers lack the job skills needed to fill jobs offered by Iowa employers.
The Iowa Workforce Development report released Wednesday says half of Iowa's jobs require middle-skill preparation, such as a two-year degree. But the report says only 33 percent of Iowa's
workers had skills needed for the jobs.
The report says high-skilled positions made up 32 percent of the jobs, with 29 percent of workers possessing the skills to fill them.
Department spokeswoman Kerry Koonce told The Des Moines Register that if Iowa doesn't have enough skilled workers, Iowa companies will look at other states when planning to expand.
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