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Wednesday News, April 9

Libray Board Chooses To Leave County Library Association

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Public Library Board of Trustees has decided not to participate in the county wide library association, which means the city public library will forfeit more than $24,000 that is contributed by the county as appropriated by the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors.   The library board made that decision during a monthly meeting held Monday evening. Scott Langel, the Le Mars City Administrator explains why the library board took the action.

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Langel says the county's portion of contribution to the local library did not meet today's needs with many electronic devices and services.

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The city administrator says rural residents living outside the Le Mars city limits wanting to use the Le Mars public library would be requested to pay an additional fee for all library services, not just electronic devices such as the computer, e-books, and access to the internet.  The contract in which the five community public libraries, Le Mars, Remsen, Kingsley, Merrill, and Akron was operating under, had been the same without many revisions since the 1970's.

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Langel says the city library board decided to take matters into their own hands.  He says the county's share of contribution made up of only five percent of the library's total budget.

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Floyd Valley Hospital To Honor Volunteers

(Le Mars) -- Floyd Valley Hospital will recognize their many volunteers during a ceremonial luncheon.  Due to the construction at the hospital, the event will be held at the Willow Creek Country Clubhouse.  Nancy Augustine of the Floyd Valley Hospital auxiliary offers an explanation for today's program.

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NIPCO Honored For Economic Development

(Le Mars) -- The utility cooperative Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative, or NIPCO was recently recognized for economic development accomplishments and commitment to their local communities at NIPCO’s Annual Meeting in Sioux City on April 1, 2014. NIPCO, in partnership with its rural electric cooperatives and municipal electric systems are positively impacting the quality of life and the economy of Iowa.  Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative has been instrumental in numerous development projects and initiatives in northwest Iowa for many years. In recognition of their leadership and support, the Cooperative was presented with an IADG Impact Award for policy development. NIPCO expanded their efforts by creating a new position with a concerted focus on economic development, staffing, marketing and cooperative relations.   
The Iowa Area Development Group is the marketing and business development office for Iowa’s member-owned rural electric cooperatives, select municipal electric utilities and independent telecommunication companies.

 

Officials Monitor Grass Fire

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Authorities are continuing to monitor a grass fire in northwest Iowa that broke out near a retirement home.
Officials at Holy Spirit Retirement Home in Sioux City say residents and staff are safe from the fire, which was reported Tuesday. Spokeswoman Leslie Heying says no one has been evacuated from the property, though some cars were moved.
Firefighters are still on the scene and working the fire, which has been contained to a nature preserve east of the retirement home. Additional information has not been released.
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Another Riot At Iowa State's Veisha Celebration

AMES, Iowa (AP) - Ames police say 1 person has been seriously injured after a rowdy crowd disturbance near the Iowa State University campus in which people overturned cars and toppled light poles.
Police Cmdr. Geoff Huff says in a statement on the agency's Facebook

page that the crowd massed late Tuesday in the Campustown area and threw beer cans at officers after overturning two cars. He says people also knocked down two light poles, striking the person who was badly hurt.  Police say the person, who wasn't immediately identified, was airlifted to a Des Moines hospital. 
The disturbances came amid Iowa State's annual Veishea celebration. 
Police told The Associated Press that the crowd dispersed early Wednesday. They sought the public's help identifying those involved.

 

Branstad Fires Iowa DAS Director

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The director of the Iowa Department of Administrative Services has been fired after a former employee's attorney forwarded to lawmakers emails that clearly show the state paid money to the woman for secrecy.
Mike Carroll, who was appointed by Branstad in 2011, told lawmakers last week the testimony of former employees was untrue and no settlement agreements included money for silence. Branstad had stood behind Carroll. 
Branstad called the new information deeply troubling and disappointing. In a statement Branstad says he fired Carroll because new facts "directly contradict what he told me and what he stated before the Government Oversight Committee."

 

Drake's Business College Gives Up Accreditation

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Drake University's business school leaders have decided to give up accreditation for a year. 
Officials at the Des Moines school intend to reapply in spring 2015 to the accrediting body, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
Drake met 20 of 21 association standards in its last review, in 2011. It fell short in faculty research productivity but was given two years to meet the standard. 
Business and public administration dean Charles Edwards says six or seven faculty members still must increase their productivity.
Edwards says Drake's College of Business and Public Administration has 1,100 undergraduate students and 450 graduate students.
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Huckabee Visits Iowa

WAUKEE, Iowa (AP) - Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is headlining a conservative event in suburban Des Moines, after meeting privately with past campaign aides in the leadoff caucus state.
The 2008 Republican presidential caucus winner is among several GOP and social conservative speakers at the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition's spring event, held at a Waukee church.
Huckabee has said he is weighing another White House bid in 2016. He said: "I'm concerned there are some directions we have taken as a nation that make no sense to me."
He has kept a public presence, with national television and radio shows.
Huckabee made headlines in January, at the Republican National Committee meeting, accusing Democrats of portraying some women as unable to "control their libido or reproductive system" and dependent on government-sponsored birth control.

 

 



   

Tuesday Afternoon News, April 8

County Supervisors Proclaim April As Sexual Abuse Awareness Month

(Le Mars) -- April is recognized as domestic violence and sexual abuse awareness month, and today the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors proclaimed April as Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse Awareness month for Plymouth County.  Haley Meis and Cathy VanMaanen appeared before the county supervisors and presented a report about the alarming statistics involving sexual abuse.

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Meis informed the Board of Supervisors that April 23rd is designated as Denim Day for sexual abuse awareness.  She told the supervisors how denim became significant to the prevention of sexual abuse.

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 JoLynn Goodchild, the county recorder, presented the Recorder's quarterly report to the county supervisors. The supervisors also approved the five-year road construction plan as submitted by County engineer Tom Rohe.

 

Judge Releases Man Suspected Of Shooting Exchange Student

 SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A judge has released from state custody a 25-year-old man suspected of shooting a foreign exchange student outside a Sioux City bar in 2012.
   Solomon Harris left jail on Monday. Judge Mary Sokolovske had said the state has no authority to civilly commit Harris, so it can't keep holding him although it's been determined that he's a threat to public safety.
     Last year Harris was ruled mentally incompetent to stand trial in the shooting of 20-year-old Natacha Butera, who is from Rwanda. Police say Harris fired the gun while arguing with another man on Nov. 18, 2012.
     Sokolovske says the U.S. Supreme Court has said that mentally incompetent defendants who aren't expected to regain competency must be released if they cannot be committed civilly.

 

Senate Passes School Radon Testing Bill

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Senate is sending to Gov. Terry Branstad a bill that will survey schools in Iowa to determine whether they're testing for the presence of radon gas. The bill requires districts to report by the end of this year to the Iowa Department of Education and the agency to file a report with the Legislature by January.
     Sen. Matt McCoy, a Des Moines Democrat, who introduced the measure, says the House "gutted" his bill but a report will at least bring public attention to the issue.
     McCoy's version, which passed the Senate, would have required schools to test and fix problems if radon had been detected at dangerous levels.
     Republican Rep. Matt Windschitl says gathering information is the right path for now.
    

 

Lawmaker Decides To Go Home Rather Than Remain In Session

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A southwest Iowa lawmaker who has stopped joining in legislative action at the Capitol is still receiving his salary and daily expense payments.
     Secretary of the Senate Michael Marshall told The Des Moines Register on Monday that Sen. Hubert Houser was receiving his $144 daily expense payments and his $25,000 annual salary, though he hasn't voted on a measure since March 4.
     Houser told the Register earlier he was too busy with work on his farm to join in legislative business, adding that as a Republican in the Democratic-controlled Senate, he had little to do.
     On Monday, Houser told the Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil he's willing to return his legislative pay to the state if anyone requested he do so.
     Houser, a Republican, has served 22 years in the Legislature.

 

Law Enforcement Academy Removes Facebook Posting

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Law Enforcement Academy has removed a post from its Facebook page that falsely claimed its firearms instructor was selling guns to recruits' family members.
     The March 7 post showed a picture of firearms instructor John Metzger making a presentation on Family Day for its current class of recruits. The post said that Metzger was "selling guns at the 255th Basic Family Day!" and received more than 50 likes.
     But academy director Arlen Ciechanowski told The Associated Press on Tuesday that post was inaccurate and created by an employee who didn't understand Metzger's presentation. He says Metzger was speaking about guns officers carry on and off duty and the academy doesn't sell guns.
     The academy changed the post to read that Metzger was "explaining firearms safety in the home."

 

Swine Virus Affects Pork Prices

  MILWAUKEE (AP) - A virus never before seen in the U.S. has killed millions of baby pigs in less than a year, threatening pork production and pushing up prices by 10 percent or more.
     The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says a pound of bacon averaged $5.46 in February. That's 13 percent more than a year ago. Ham and chops have gone up too, although not as much.
     Scientists believe porcine epidemic diarrhea came from China, but they don't know how it got into the United States.
     Agricultural economist Steve Meyer estimates the virus has killed nearly 6.8 million pigs in 27 states since last May. Meyer says Americans expect cheap food, but PED has shown how much an outbreak can cost and how important disease prevention is to the food supply.

 

 


 
 

 
 

   

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