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Monday News, May 6

Road Construction And Bridge Repair Projects Scheduled

(Le Mars) -- Several county roads are scheduled to be closed beginning today in order for construction crews to make repairs on bridges and county roads.  Plymouth County engineer Tom Rohe says Fawn Avenue from Highway 3 to 180th Street will be closed from today through July 19th due to a bridge replacement project.  Meanwhile, 160th Street from Highway 60 to Mahogany Avenue will close today and will remain closed until October.  Work crews are replacing a bridge project.
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Other road closures include County Road C-38 from K-42 to Key Ave, and County road K-42 from Main Street in Merrill to County Road C-38.

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The roads leading into Merrill are scheduled to have new paving.


Legislative Session Goes Into Overtime

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Boxes were stacked in the corner of the Iowa Senate chambers on Thursday, but lawmakers are nowhere near ready to pack up.
Still, the legislative session will look different starting Monday. May 3 was the last day for much of the temporary staff and the student pages who work in the Legislature, as well as the final
day of expense payments for lawmakers.
Most of the 150 legislators will report to work early next week. But if negotiations drag out then numbers will likely dwindle to a smaller group of party leaders and those working on negotiating
The Republicans who control the House and Democrats who rule the Senate are still trying to find resolution on major issues like education funding, property tax reductions and low-income health care.

Veterans Home Hearing Scheduled

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A state Senate panel will hold a hearing to review the quality of care at the Iowa Veterans Home.
The Monday meeting comes after more than 40 former staffers signed a letter that was printed in The Des Moines Register complaining about the current leadership at the home.
A news release from Senate Democrats says David Worley, the commandant of the Veterans Home, will testify at the hearing.
The home in Marshalltown is Iowa's largest nursing home and among the biggest in the nation for veterans and their spouses. The home is made up of two separate facilities. One provides nursing
care for about 500 residents. The other is a residential care facility where 100 more people live mostly independently.


50 Sex Offenders Hold Gun Permits

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - More than 50 Iowa sex offenders have permits to carry guns in public thanks to a two-year-old law that makes it harder for sheriffs to deny permits.
Law enforcement officials and some state lawmakers are worried about armed sex offenders.
Washington County Sheriff Jerry Dunbar says he worries about sex offenders having guns because many of them use intimidation to get what they want and a gun could help that.
Most of the sex offenders who have obtained gun permits in Iowa were convicted of misdemeanors like lascivious conduct with a minor.
Ronald Hahn Jr. says he doesn't pose a threat to public safety and he uses guns for hunting. He has been a registered sex offender since 2005 for an indecent exposure conviction.


Cedar Rapids Haz Mat Team Contain Acid Leak

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Hazardous-materials crew members and firefighters have contained a leak of hydrochloric acid from a tanker trailer at Cedar Rapids plant.
Officials had blocked access to the Cargill plant after a truck driver noticed the corrosive, dangerous acid was leaking from a nickel-size hole in the tanker on Sunday morning.
Workers used an air bag to stop the leak and then transferred the acid into another tanker.
No injuries have been reported.


Iowa City Beating

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa City woman has reported being beaten and choked while holding her 4-month-old baby.
The Iowa City Press-Citizen says ( ) the woman told officers early Sunday morning that her attacker was the man she lived with, the father of her child.
Police say 21-year-old Jose Luis Avalos-Covarrubias was arrested and was charged with domestic assault by impeding air/blood and with child endangerment with no injury.
The woman reported that Avalos-Covarrubias choked her until she was unconscious and struck her several times while she was holding their baby.
Online records say Avalos-Covarrubias remained in Johnson County Jail on Monday. Online court records don't list the name of his attorney.


Saturday News, May 4

King Decides Against Running For U.S. Senate

(Washington) -- Iowa Republican Congressman Steve King has made a decision with regards to the U.S. Senate race, but the decision is perhaps different than many would have thought.  King, the 4th District Congressman has announced he will not seek the position of U.S. Senate.  Now, that King has passed on the opportunity and other Republicans that were mentioned as possible contenders, Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey, Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, and Iowa Congressman Tom Latham have also passed on running, the question now becomes, who will be the Republican candidate to face Democratic challenger Bruce Braley?  Braley, announced his candidacy in February, and has since captured the endorsements of Senator Tom Harkin, Former Congressman Leonard Boswell, Attorney General Tom Miller, and State Treasurer Micheal Fitzgerald.  Sources predict the race could be a spendy $25 million dollars.  Braley has already secured over a million dollars for the Senate campaign.


Jamal Dean Captured In Texas

(Sioux City) -- The manhunt is over for the Sioux City Police Department.  Jamal Dean, the man accused of shooting Sioux City Police officer Kevin McCormick has been taken into custody by U-S Marshalls.  Dean was apprehended in Texas.  The 22 year old man is being charged with attempted murder for shooting at Officer McCormick during a traffic stop on April 29th.  McCormick stopped a car that Dean was a passenger in when Dean stepped out of the car and fired upon the officer.  McCormick was treated for a gunshot wound to his head and has been released from a local hospital.


Father Testifies In Iowa Teen's Murder Trial

CLARION, Iowa (AP) - The father of a 14-year-old boy accused of fatally shooting his mother says he thought his son was joking about the death.
William Crooks testified Friday in Wright County District Court during Noah Crook's trial for the March 2012 death of Gretchen Crooks.
Noah Crooks faces charges of first-degree murder and assault with intent to commit sexual abuse. He was 13 at the time of the death and is being tried as a youthful offender.
The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports William Crooks said his wife was the disciplinarian of the family, and his son had a loving but sometimes stormy relationship with her.
William Crooks said he thought his son was joking when he texted him on the night of the shooting and said he accidentally killed the woman.


Missing Cousin Funeral

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) - A funeral is scheduled this weekend for one of two cousins abducted in Evansdale and later found dead.     The service for Elizabeth Collins is scheduled to begin 11 a.m.
Saturday at Waterloo Memorial Park Cemetery. The funeral will be open to the public.
Television station KWWL reports the funeral service is being held now because the state medical examiner had been conducting an autopsy on Elizabeth and her cousin, Lyric Cook.
The cousins went missing in July after riding their bikes by Meyers Lake in Evansdale. Hunters found their bodies in a wooded area in December.
A private funeral service for Lyric was held last month. Minor construction has begun on a permanent memorial near where the girls were last seen alive.


Power Plant Explosion

MONTPELIER, Iowa (AP) - The Muscatine County sheriff's office says there was an explosion at a power plant near Montpelier.
The Quad-City Times reports the Friday morning explosion in a
boiler at the Central Iowa Power Cooperative plant prompted an
evacuation of the plant.
A fire was confined to a boiler room.
No one was injured and workers were later allowed to return to
their jobs.
The plant is near the Mississippi River. Central Iowa Power
Cooperative is based in Cedar Rapids.


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