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Friday News, April 11

Clark Elementary Third Graders Honored By Fire Department

(Le Mars) -- Two third grade girls from Clark Elementary were honored this afternoon during an assembly program by the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department.  Fire Chief Dave Schipper and Assistant Chief Mike Wise presented certificates of "Fire Department's Students Of the Year".  The two girls noticed smoke emitting from a garage last week when they were walking home from school.  The girls knew to tell an adult and call 9-1-1.

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Fire chief Schipper complimented all the Clark elementary school children for being good students, and presented the certificates of honor to Emily Peters and Allison Lane.

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Emily Peters explains their actions from that day.

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Allison Lane shares her feelings about seeing a neighborhood garage on fire.

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The two girls admitted being surprised to be honored by the local fire department, and as for being honored in front of their school mates, both girls summarize their feelings.

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Oyens Fire Department Called To Extinguish Grass Fire

(Oyens) -- The Oyens Fire Department was called to action last evening when it was reported a grass fire had started along side railroad tracks near county road K-64.  The incident was reported at about 5:30 p.m.  Fire officials were on the scene for nearly a half an hour.

 

Sioux City Man Sentenced To 100 Years For Sexual Abuse

 SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A Sioux City man has been sentenced to 100 years in prison for committing sex acts with a child over several years.
     Daniel Harbeck received the sentence Thursday in Woodbury County District Court. He must serve 70 years before he is eligible for parole.
     The 37-year-old Harbeck was sentenced on seven counts of second-degree sexual abuse. Court documents say Harbeck admitted to multiple sex acts with the child between 2010 and 2013. The child is now 8 years old.
      Harbeck was ordered to serve four of the sentences consecutively. The other three will be served concurrently.
     Woodbury County Attorney Patrick Jennings says that he hasn't seen a 100-year sentence in a sex abuse case during his 12 years as a prosecutor.
     ---

 

Woman Pleads Guilty In Connection With Double Homicide

DELOIT, Iowa (AP) - A woman has reached a plea deal in connection to a double homicide in western Iowa that involved a fire. 
      Erika Marlys Dains pleaded guilty Thursday in Crawford County District Court to one count of second-degree burglary and one count of accessory after the fact.
     The charges are in connection to the March 10 deaths of Marvin Huelsing and Alice Huisenga. The longtime friends were killed before a fire on Huelsing's property southeast of Deloit.
     The agreement means the 36-year-old Dains agrees to a prison term of 10 years on the burglary charge and two years on the accessory charge. 
     Two men have pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder and first-degree arson in the case.
     ---

 

Branstad Orders Flags At Half Staff

CLINTON, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad has ordered U.S. and Iowa flags to be flown at half-staff to honor a Clinton man who died during World War II.
     The remains of 1st Lt. Louis Longman are being returned to Iowa, and a memorial service is scheduled for Saturday at the Rock Island Arsenal National Cemetery, in Rock Island, Ill.  Military honors will be provided by the Iowa National Guard.
     The flags are to be flown at half-staff from 5 p.m. Friday until 8 a.m. Monday.
     The Defense Department says the 26-year-old Longman went down with his P-38 fighter on April 16, 1944, in the mountains of New Guinea. The recovery and identification process began in 2005. 
     Longman graduated in 1936 from St. Mary's High School in Clinton.

 

Medical Marijuana Bill May Get A Second Look

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal says he will sponsor a bill legalizing the sale of medical marijuana in Iowa, reviving an issue once thought dead this year.
     The persistent efforts of woman who have children with epilepsy changed lawmakers' perceptions on the issue.
     New policy measures cannot be raised late in the legislative session unless leaders in the House or Senate bring them up.  Since Gronstal, a Democrat, will sponsor a bill its fate relies on Minority Leader Bill Dix, a Republican, to sign on too to move it forward. Dix says he will make that decision when a bill is presented to him.
     Governor Terry Branstad has talked recently with governors who have signed bills legalizing use of cannabis plant oil that isn't smoked and doesn't create a high.

 

House Closes The Door On Re-opening Juvenile Home

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An effort to reopen the Iowa Juvenile home closed by Gov. Terry Branstad in January has been rejected by the Iowa House.
     House Minority Leader Mark Smith, of Marshalltown, on Thursday attempted to tack on a provision to the health and human services budget to reopen the facility in Toledo and revamp programming for delinquent girls. The amendment failed in a 48-to-51 vote. 
     Smith and other Democrats say delinquent girls are no longer being properly served since Branstad closed the home, which previously housed some of Iowa's most troubled girls. They also say since there's a facility for delinquent boys in Eldora, girls deserve a similar state-run location.    
     Rep. David Heaton, a Mount Pleasant Republican, says although the House rejected the motion, lawmakers will continue to work toward a solution. 

 

House Approves Funding For Burials For Low Income Families 

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A nonprofit group that supports low-income families who can't afford to bury their children would receive state funds under a budget provision approved by the Iowa House.
     While debating the health and human services appropriation Thursday, lawmakers adopted an amendment to provide $100,000 to the organization Sing Me To Heaven. The group offers financial support to families who have lost a child, and members have said fundraising efforts aren't sufficient to help families across the state.
     The money would be administered through Iowa's Department of Public Health. Eligible families could then receive up to $2,000 for funeral expenses after a child's death, which the group would dispense.
     Rep. Bob Kressig, a Cedar Falls Democrat, says the appropriation is a way to help needy families suffering from loss.

 

 

 

 




 

   

Thursday Afternoon News, April 10

Fire Departments Respond To Three Grass/Field Fires Within 35 minutes

(Le Mars) -- Within a time span of nearly a half an hour, the Le Mars, Merrill, and Hinton Fire Departments were called to three separate grass/field fires.  The first call came at about 11:30 a.m. and was located at the intersection of 240th Street and Lake Avenue, about four miles south of Le Mars.  Approximately 30 acres of grassland and timber areas had burned during that fire.  It is suspected the fire was started from a discarded cigarette.  Fire officials were barely able to extinguish the blaze when the Hinton Fire Department was called at 12:03 p.m. and had to leave the first scene to go fight a grass fire located at the intersection of County roads C-60 and K-30.  Meanwhile, about five minutes later, both the Le Mars and Merrill Fire Departments and Akron and Hinton Fire Departments were called to a third grass fire on the opposite side of their fire districts, located at county roads C-38 and K-22, about six miles west of Merrill.  The fire located at Lake Avenue and 240th Street had approached a home, coming within a distance of nearly fifty feet of threatening the house.  Fire officials were able to control the blaze before it reached the home. The third grass fire at C-38 and K-22 also had threaten a rural home, having come within just a few feet of the house.  That fire had destroyed more than five acres of corn stubble.  It was the result of a controlled burn that got out of control.  Fire officials have said if rain doesn't arrive by this weekend, than it is likely a burn ban may be issued for Plymouth County.

 

Clark Elementary Third Graders Honored By Fire Department

(Le Mars) -- Two third grade girls from Clark Elementary were honored this afternoon during an assembly program by the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department.  Fire Chief Dave Schipper and Assistant Chief Mike Wise presented certificates of "Fire Department's Students Of the Year".  The two girls noticed smoke emitting from a garage last week when they were walking home from school.  The girls knew to tell an adult and call 9-1-1.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Fire chief Schipper complimented all the Clark elementary school children for being good students, and presented the certificates of honor to Emily Peters and Allison Lane.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Emily Peters explains their actions from that day.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Allison Lane shares her feelings about seeing a neighborhood garage on fire.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The two girls admitted being surprised to be honored by the local fire department, and as for being honored in front of their school mates, both girls summarize their feelings.

Listen to

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Still Too Cool To Do Much Field Work

(Le Mars) -- The calendar may indicate to farmers that its time to start spring field work, however, cool conditions still exist.  Iowa State University extension crops specialist, Joel DeJong says farmers should not worry about getting into the fields just yet.

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DeJong says he has noticed several farmers applying anhydrous ammonia, or spreading manure on the fields, in preparation for tillage.

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DeJong believes fields are still generally too wet to do much tillage.  He cautions farmers to wait for warmer weather, so to not have soil compaction.

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Grassley Fears A Minimum Wage Increase Will Mean Higher Unemployment

(Washington) -- Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley says the Obama Administration is pushing hard for Congress to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour before taking the summer recess.  However, Grassley told reporters, it is likely if the minimum wage is increased, the nation's unemployment rate will go higher, simply because many small business operators won't be able to afford the higher wages and keep all employees.  Grassley says young people will be especially hit hard.

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Grassley says there are some Republican Senators who may support an increase in the minimum wage, if small businesses are protected, and if the proposed amount would be less than ten dollars an hour.

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However, Grassley believes the Democrats are pushing this agenda to protect themselves from backlash of the president's troubled healthcare plan.

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Schultz Says He Will Return Unused Money

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz plans to return more than $200,000 to the state in unspent money from his budget. He says his ongoing efforts to reduce costs in his office resulted in less spending than his predecessors.
Schultz says finding efficiencies in technology, reducing staff, and consolidating management positions, allows him to return the money in July.
Schultz has been criticized by Democrats and voting rights advocates for paying the Iowa Division of Criminal investigation $250,000 over two years to investigate voter fraud. The money came from a federal grant designed to improve voting.
A spokesman for Schultz says the $200,000 is the current fiscal year savings but will continue in lower expenditures in future years.
Schultz, a Republican, is leaving after one term to run for Congress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

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