Monday Afternoon News, August 18
Van Looses Wheel Causes Accident
(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department along with the Le Mars Ambulance responded to an accident that happened on Saturday at about 11:20 a.m. A van, driven by 57 year old Micheal Oldfield of Lake Lillian, Minnesota, was traveling southbound on U-S Highway 75 when its front wheel came off the vehicle, causing the van to go into the ditch and struck some large drainage rocks. The accident happened at about mile marker 119, just south of Fedder's Marine and RV. Fire fighters had to help the driver out of his vehicle as the steering wheel had pinned him. The driver was taken to Floyd Valley Hospital. Also responding to the scene were the Le Mars Police Department and the Plymouth County Sheriff's Office.
Counties Refuse To Hold Immigrants In Jail
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Officials at 22 Iowa county jails are refusing to accept requests from federal immigration authorities to hold people in jail without a court order.
It has been common practice for Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to ask jails to hold individuals suspected of not having proper immigration documentation. Some people have been held for days or weeks without charges filed against them.
Increasingly county officials are declining in part because of lawsuits but also because they're not paid to hold the individuals.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa says 22 counties refusing to honor immigration detainers include Iowa's most populous cities. Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, and Sioux City are among them.
The counties say they now require a judge's approval of a warrant before they'll hold someone.
Iowa's Unemployment Rises Slightly
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A state agency says Iowa's unemployment rate rose slightly in July to 4.5 percent.
The rate released Monday by Iowa Workforce Development was up from 4.4 percent in June. The number of unemployed Iowans was 76,900 in July, up from 74,300 in June.
Iowa's unemployment rate is well below the national rate of 6.2 percent. And Iowa's rate is lower than it was a year ago when it came in at 4.8 percent.
Gov. Terry Branstad pledged to create 200,000 new jobs in five years during his 2010 campaign. Since he took office in January of 2011, federal labor data shows the state has seen a net gain of 74,000 jobs.
Des Moines Homeless Evicted From Their Camps Along Rivers
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The deadline has arrived for homeless people to leave their camps along the Des Moines and Raccoon rivers in Des Moines.
Earlier this month, an administrative law judge ruled that the city can legally evict homeless residents who received notices. The city plans to clean up the areas on Monday.
The city has said the notices followed complaints from people who use bike paths in addition to concerns from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers regarding damage to levees. Council member Robert "Bob" Mahaffey says the city is trying to protect public property.
The city plans to help residents of the camps access social services. The city also plans to hire a coordinator to work with the homeless.
Bill And Hillary Clinton To Appear At Harkin's Steak Fry
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Bill and Hillary Clinton will headline the annual steak fry for retiring Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa, making a big return to the leadoff caucus state as the former secretary of state considers another presidential campaign.
Sam Roecker, a spokesman for the Harkin Steak Fry, says Monday that both Clintons will speak at the fundraiser in Indianola, just south of Des Moines, on Sept. 14. It will be the former first lady's first appearance in Iowa since 2008. She is the leading Democratic presidential contender, and the event is among her first campaign appearances before the 2014 midterm elections.
Clinton has said she intends to campaign for Democratic candidates this year. Iowa is the home of a key Senate race, and its presidential caucuses will begin the 2016 nomination process.
Iowa Mom Speaks Out About FDA's Tissue Donation Rules
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa mom is speaking out against the Food and Drug Administration's ban on donations of some tissue from gay men after her son died and some of his organs were rejected.
Sheryl Moore of Pleasant Hill was told that some of her 16-year-old son's tissues wouldn't be donated because his sexual history was unclear.
Moore says the Iowa Donor Network accepted his heart, lungs and kidneys. But they wouldn't take other tissues, including bone, tendons and eyes.
Moore's son, A.J. Betts, committed suicide last July. She says the refusal of his tissues floored her because she thinks the federal safeguards are archaic.
FDA regulations restrict certain tissue donations from men who have had sexual contact with other men within the past five years.
Boy Scouts Say Border Patrol Aimed A Gun At Them
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Federal officials say an allegation that a border officer drew and pointed a gun at a Boy Scout from Iowa appears to be unsubstantiated.
The Department of Homeland Security's Office of Inspector General says security footage and interviews helped officials investigate the claim.
The Iowa troop was stopped July 7 at the Alcan Port of Entry in Alaska. A scoutmaster later claimed some Scouts witnessed a Customs and Border Protection officer point a gun at a Boy Scout.
Officers present denied drawing a weapon. Federal officials say officers searched one of the troop's vehicles after a personal camera used to take prohibited photos of the port indicated marijuana possession. The search turned up nothing.
The Office of Inspector General says at least $19,000 was spent investigating the case.
Harlan Statue To Be Housed At Iowa Weslyan College
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A statue of former U.S. Sen. James Harlan will be officially unveiled at Iowa Wesleyan College.
Gov. Terry Branstad says the statue will be unveiled on Aug. 28 at the college in Mount Pleasant. The statue previously had been on display at the U. S. Capitol's National Statuary Hall.
The Harlan statue was replaced in the Capitol by a statue of Norman Borlaug, who received the Nobel Prize in 1970 for boosting agricultural production and founded the World Food Prize.
Harlan, a friend of President Abraham Lincoln, was president of the college in the mid-1800s before he was elected to the U.S. Senate. The bronze-cast statue, by Illinois sculptor Nellie V. Walker, had been in National Statuary Hall since 1910.