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Tuesday News, August 28, 2012

UPDATED (Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Sheriff's Employee Association's request for a six percent increase in salaries and benefits was met with a counter offer by the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors this morning. Here's Supervisor Don Kass with the motion that consists of the counter.
 
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Kurt Hatting was present at the meeting to represent the Sheriff's office. There was nodiscussion regarding the counter from either side. The parties plan to begin negotiations on Tuesday, September 11th in closed session.

(Le Mars) -- Last year, the Le Mars Community School District had 2066 students enrolled, 
according to the annual report offered by Dr. Todd Wendt, superintendent of schools.  Dr.
Wendt shared the highlights of 2011-2012 school year with the school board during its
regular meeting.  Wendt says the school had many achievements, both with its academics and
activities.  He summarized the elementary grades by telling the board that the teachers have
placed a priority on reading comprehension.

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Wendt says the middle school teachers focused on reading strategies.

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The superintendent of schools also informed the board about how middle school teachers are
using a "team concept" for teaching, and the results have been positive.  As for the high
school, Wendt says the faculty worked on characteristics of effective instruction, and 21st
century learning skills.

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Wendt reported to the board the tutorial program was saved and as a result, 127 students
utilized the services with 57 percent of the students raising their grade level and 13
percent maintaining their grades.  46 students signed up for the program on a voluntary
basis.    


(Orange City) -- Northwestern College of Orange City has again been ranked among the
nation's top-10 baccalaureate colleges by Washington Monthly.  The magazine's rankings are
based on how well the schools contribute to the public good in the areas of social mobility,
research and service.  Northwestern ranked sixth this year, has been the highest-ranked
school among members of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities and among Iowa
colleges since Washington Monthly began ranking baccalaureate colleges in 2010.



DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - President Barack Obama has added a stop
in Sioux City to his Iowa travel plans this week.
Obama will hold an event Tuesday at Iowa State University in
Ames, then will return to the state Saturday.
The Democrat had previously announced a visit Saturday to Des
Moines, and on Monday a campaign official confirmed Obama has added
the stop in Sioux City.
The events follow Obama's three-day bus tour of the state
earlier in August.
Likely Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney also has
visited Iowa, including an event last week in Bettendorf.
Iowa is among seven states where neither candidate is believed
to have a significant advantage, making the states key to deciding
who will win the November election.


DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Three state officials will decide
Tuesday whether Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary
Johnson's name appears on the Iowa ballot in November.
Documents challenging Johnson's candidacy were filed Friday by
three individuals including Jay Kramer, who says he's the Iowa
election day operations director for Republican Mitt Romney's
campaign.
Libertarians say they held a state convention at the Iowa State
Fair to get Johnson, the former Republican governor from New
Mexico, onto Iowa's ballot.
The challenge says Libertarians didn't hold a real convention or
sign up actual delegates.
Republican Secretary of State Matt Schultz, Democratic Attorney
General Tom Miller, and Chief Deputy Auditor Warren Jenkins heard
both sides present their arguments Monday. Miller says a decision
is likely Tuesday.
Candidates must be certified for Iowa's ballot by 5 p.m.
Wednesday.


CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Rockwell Collins is cutting about 140
jobs mainly in Iowa and Texas as the aerospace and defense
electronics company continues to cuts costs because of the economy.
The layoffs were announced Monday and involve the company's Operations and Shared

Servicesoperations primarily in Cedar Rapids and Richardson, Texas.
The company says it's identifying ways to reduce costs to better
withstand economic and market forces affecting business.
Rockwell Collins has about 20,000 employees worldwide, including
8,800 in Cedar Rapids, where it's headquartered.
It has previously announced cutbacks due to reduced defense
contracts.




DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa farmers are hopeful last week's
rain will help the soybean crop as the corn harvest gets under way
during the nation's worst dry spell in a generation.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture says farmers are still
chopping corn for silage and starting to harvest corn for grain and
seed. Fifty-three percent of the corn crop is in poor to very poor
condition.
The USDA says farmers are hoping soybean plants will produce
more pods because of the rain, which averaged 1.29 inches last
week. It was the wettest week in 10 weeks.
Nineteen percent of the soybean crop is turning color, and some
leaves are dropping. Soybeans are rated 36 percent poor or very
poor, 39 percent in fair condition and 25 percent in good or
excellent shape.



(Des Moines) -- Five Iowa Counties have been approved by the U-S Department of Agriculture
to implement and hold a sign up under the Emergency Conservation Program.  State Farm
Services Agency Executive Director John Whitaker says ECP provides qualified producers the
opportunity to request financial assistance during this critical time.  Whitaker says it is
unknown if funding will be immediately available, but producers who are interested can begin
making their cost-share requests, and they will be notified as funds become available.   
The program provides cost-share assistance if the damage is so severe that water available
for livestock, orchards, and vineyards has been reduced below normal to the extent that they
cannot survive without additional water.  Approved practices and measures may include:
installing pipelines or other facilities for livestock water or existing irrigation systems.
Constructing and deepening wells for livestock water, and developing springs for livestock
water.  The five counties include: Audubon, Carroll, Crawford, Davis and Wapello.




   

Monday afternoon news, August 27

Merrill To Hold Meeting Regarding 5th Street Improvements

(Merrill) -- The city of Merrill will be holding an informational meeting on this evening at 7:00 p.m. at the Merrill City Hall, Kissinger Community Center.  The purpose of the meeting, according to John Meis, a civil engineer with the DeWild Grant Reckert and Associates is to focus on the improvements for 5th Street.

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Meis says the project is slated to begin in the spring of 2013. He says the street reconstruction project will coordinate with the county's work on county road K-42.

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Meis says the street is in need of repair due in part to the volume and weight of trucks that serve both the Plymouth Energy and Plymouth Oil industries.  The civil engineer summarizes tonight's meeting.

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Tyson Cited By OSHA For Safety Violations

DAKOTA CITY, Neb. (AP) - Regulators have proposed more than $104,000 in penalties for Tyson Foods because of safety violations the regulators say were found at a Nebraska beef plant where a
worker was fatally injured.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson was cited for seven violations at its Dakota City plant.
Authorities say 37-year-old Rodney Bridgett was injured March 14 when a piece of equipment he was working on collapsed on him. The company has said the slaughter and processing plant was not in
operation at the time.
Tyson's options include complying with the citations' provisions, seeking an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Omaha, or contesting the citations to an OSHA review commission.
Tyson representative Worth Sparkman said Monday the company hasn't decided which course it will take.

 

Denison Man Pleads Guilty To Meth Distribution

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say a 27-year-old man has admitted distributing methamphetamine in the western Iowa city of Denison.
Prosecutors say Antonio Lara-Pantoja, of Denison, pleaded guilty in federal court in Sioux City to a drug conspiracy charge. He was arrested on March 26, 2011, after officers found nearly 4 grams of
meth in his vehicle.
Investigators say Lara-Pantoja sold meth in Denison from January through March last year after obtaining it in Omaha, Neb.
He faces a minimum of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison. His sentencing hasn't been scheduled yet.


Three People Rescued After Boat Capsizes

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Three people have been rescued after their boat overturned at Raccoon River Park in West Des Moines.
Des Moines television station KCCI reports that the accident occurred a little before 8 p.m. Sunday.
Ronnie and Jennifer Oldham and another person were in the boat when another one came by, creating a big wave that flipped over the Oldhams' craft.
They swam to a nearby shore, where they were rescued by another boat.
No injuries have been reported.


Regents Start Search For UNI President

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Board of Regents has started the search for a replacement for University of Northern Iowa President Ben Allen.
The regents met by telephone Monday to authorize the board to hire a firm to help with the search.
The regents also voted to create a 20-member search and screen committee that will evaluate candidates and recommend finalists.  They voted to have three regents on the committee, compared to two during the search for Iowa State's president last year.
Allen has announced that he will be retiring by next July, once his successor is appointed. He has led the university since 2006, and the campus has recently been in turmoil over a series of budget
cuts.
Regents officials say the search could conclude before Christmas
and cost less than $150,000.


Farm Progress Show Expected To Attract Several Thousand

(Boone) -- As many as 100-thousand visitors are expected in Boone this week for the Farm Progress Show, the region's biggest event of its kind. Dena Morgan is spokeswoman for the 59th annual exposition, showing off everything that's new in agricultural production.

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Morgan says visitors will be seeing the latest in agricultural equipment and technology as this is the place where many companies will roll out new products and campaigns.

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Morgan was asked how this year's enduring drought will have an impact on the show.

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The show runs Tuesday through Thursday. It rotates locations every other year. Boone hosts the show in even-numbered years while Decatur, Illinois, hosts it in odd-numbered years. Learn more at: "www.farmprogress.com"

 

 

 

 

   

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