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Monday News, June 3

Cherokee Rural Water Association Still Making Repairs After Flooding

(Cherokee) -- The Cherokee Rural Water Association is still recovering from floods that washed away several of their water mains.  The association has announced that for its members downstream from the five inch crossing in section two of Pitcher township, including all of Afton Township, Sunset point addition, Keeline addition, and members along Linden Street, that their attempts to bore a new line and make repairs has failed.  Members west of Highway 59 are no longer in a water conservation area.  The bacteria test results were negative meaning no harmful bacteria is present.  However, residents living east of Highway 59 between Larrabee and Cherokee are under a boil order.  Officials are trying to make the repairs as quickly as possible, and when the stream crossing is fixed they will notify you when the order is lifted.

 

Le Mars Man Accused Of Vehicular Manslaughter

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - The family of a motorcyclist who died after a hit-and-run crash fear prosecutors could have a hard time convicting the man accused because of a delays in the
investigation.
Fifty-year-old Todd Ross of Le Mars was charged Friday with vehicular manslaughter and leaving the scene of a fatal accident. Ross is in the Woodbury County Jail and could not be reached
Saturday for comment.
Police say Ross ran a stop sign in Sioux City on May 17th and hit 69-year-old Jerry Graves of Sioux City, Iowa.
Police say Graves did not seem critically injured at the time, but was taken to a Sioux City hospital, where he died Monday from his injuries.
Police began trying to reconstruct the crash after learning of Graves' death.

 

Jury Selection To Begin With Levin Murder and Kidnapping Trial

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) - Jury selection is expected to begin Monday for a 21-year-old Iowa man accused of killing his mother in Early and kidnapping another woman.
The trial will be held in Webster County despite a late attempt by the lawyer for Kirk Levin to move it to another county.
Levin's trail had been moved from Sac County to Webster County, but attorney Charles Kenville said Friday that another move was needed because of the abduction of two girls May 20 near Dayton,
which is in Webster County. Kenville says that case would influence Webster County jurors.
But Judge Timothy Finn disagreed and said Levin could get a fair trial as long as attorneys take extra precautions during jury selection.

 

Fox News Contributor To Speak At Sioux City Diocese Dinner

Sioux City, Iowa--The Catholic School Foundation of the Diocese of Sioux City has announced Father Jonathan Morris will be the featured speaker at the 2013 Bishop’s Dinner for Catholic Schools in October.  As a news analyst for the Fox News and Fox Business Channels, Father Jonathan Morris offers
coverage of the ethical, social and religious news stories of the day.  As a Roman Catholic
priest with pastoral experience developed from serving around the world, he brings not only
a journalist’s eye to issues but also a pastor’s heart in relating how that issue will
affect the audience.
Father Jonathan was featured extensively on Fox News during Pope Benedict’s resignation and
Pope Francis’ subsequent election. His presentation at the Bishop’s Dinner will focus on
the important role of Catholic schools within families and communities.   
The Bishop’s Dinner for Catholic Schools serves as the single largest fundraiser for all 16
Catholic school systems throughout the Diocese of Sioux City.  More than 6200 students
attended Catholic schools in northwest Iowa during the 2012 – 13 school year.  Last year’s event raised more than $125,000 and drew a crowd of more than 600 attendees.
This year’s dinner is scheduled for Sunday, October 13th at the Sioux City Convention Center. Tickets will go on sale on Monday, August 26th and can be purchased through the diocesan website www.scdiocese.org


Mosquitoes May Not Be A Problem This Summer

(Le Mars) -- Now that the flood waters are receding and some ponding of water is occurring, does that mean we could have a heavy infestation of mosquitoes this summer?  Donald Lewis, an Iowa State University extension entomologist says maybe not.

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Lewis says what happens next will determine whether or not we will be affected by the pesky pests.

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The ISU entomologist also suggests people discard their old tires.

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Lewis says if people want to eradicate mosquitoes, unfortunately, their efforts will only be temporary.

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Mr. P's To Host Creative Spirits Art Event

(Le Mars) -- Get the Creative Spirits flowing when you paint a picture with friends Tuesday night at Mr. P's.  Jan Wagner Real Estate is hosting the night that begins at 6pm.  She tells us why she decided to host such an event in Le Mars.

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Creative Spirits of Okoboji is the company that will be coming to P's on Tuesday to teach painting techniques and provide all the materials needed. Jan says that one of the six artists on staff will be there to help.

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The event concept encourages you to to grab a friend, your favorite beverage and enjoy creating art to take home with you.  It takes place Tuesday, June 4th at 6pm at Mr. P's.  Registration is encouraged, but not required and you can do so online at www.creativespiritsokoboji.com.  Feel free to call Mr. P's or Jan Wagner Real Estate for further details.

 

Branstad and Reynolds To Tour Flood Areas

(Des Moines) -- Governor Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds will be touring eastern Iowa today to examine the latest flood damage along the Cedar and Iowa Rivers.  Joining Branstad and Reynolds will be Iowa Homeland Security Emergency Management Division (HSEMD) Administrator Mark Schouten. Branstad, Reynolds and Schouten will tour New Hartford before conducting an aerial survey of Eastern Iowa flood damage and holding a media availability in Iowa City.

 

Residents of Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Still Concerned About Flooding

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - The drier weekend weather has helped ease flooding in Iowa, but rivers remain high in parts of the state and rain is in this week's forecast.
The greatest flood concerns Sunday were in eastern and southeastern Iowa because the rivers near Cedar Rapids, Iowa City and Burlington all continue to flood.
But those cities' flood defenses appear to be holding back the water, and the Cedar River crested early Sunday near Cedar Rapids at 18.23 feet and started to drop.
Officials will be watching Iowa City closely early this week because more water still must be released from a dam upstream.
National Weather Service meteorologist David Cousins says rain is predicted to arrive on Tuesday or Wednesday, and that could renew the flooding problems if significant rain falls on Iowa.


Branstad Will Sign Education Bill At Des Moines High School

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad will head to a Des Moines high school to sign an education reform bill into law.
Branstad plans to sign the bill in the auditorium of Des Moines North High School on Monday morning.
The education plan approved by the Legislature includes more basic school funding for the next two academic years, as well as increased money for districts that adopt a program to raise minimum
teacher pay and offer leadership incentives. A task force will review teacher evaluations and some restrictions on home-schooling will be lifted.
Branstad made education reforms a priority of the legislative session, arguing that Iowa's public school system has gradually fallen from among the best in the nation to middle of the pack due
to years of complacency.

 

Grassley Aide To Run For U-S Senate

VAN METER, Iowa (AP) - Republican David Young, who was U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley's top aide, is running for Iowa's other U.S. Senate seat in 2014.
Young said Sunday that after talking with friends and family he decided to run for the Senate seat being vacated by retiring five-term Democratic Senator Tom Harkin.
The GOP Senate race may be a crowded one because Representative Steve King, Representative Tom Latham and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds all decided not to run. Republican former U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker is already running.
Young says he thinks his experience as Grassley's chief of staff would help him accomplish more in the Senate if he was elected.
Young lives in Van Meter, Iowa, and says he's looking forward to campaigning.
Democratic Representative Bruce Braley of Waterloo is his party's only candidate.

 

Iowa Department of Public Health To Help Those Quit Smoking

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Department of Public Health is offering free help during June to people trying to stop smoking.
The agency will provide nicotine replacement patches and gum to Iowa smokers who try to stop smoking by using Quitline Iowa, which offers tobacco cessation coaching by phone and the Internet.
Agency director Mariannette Miller-Meeks says in a news release that data suggests most smokers want to quit. She says the state is able to offer help through Quitline for the first time in years
because of "smart, efficient budgeting."
For more information about the service, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or go online to www.quitlineiowa.org.

 

Iowa To Implement Health Care Rules

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A legislative compromise has been struck on low-income health care, but now Iowa starts the complicated process of putting the plan in place.
On Monday the state will kick off a series of public hearings to explain the proposed health care plan recently approved by lawmakers. The hearings are a step the state must go through to get
federal approval.
But after the dramatic debate during the legislative session, these hearings are likely to stir up little controversy. State Senator Jack Hatch, a Des Moines Democrat who advocated for
Medicaid expansion, says he expects limited criticism.
He says, "I think everybody is going to be supportive."
Under the plan, the state will seek federal funding offered to states that expand Medicaid to provide benefits to low-income residents.

 

 

 

 

   

Saturday News, June 1

(Le Mars) -- The month of May may go down in history as being a "weird month of weather". 

You may recall on May 1st, Le Mars had received three inches of snow, then nearly two weeks

later on May 14th, Le Mars had set a record for the hottest temperature at 102 degrees. 

Then also consider this week's abundant rainfall followed by the flash flooding.  All

together, it has been an unusual May. Harry Hilaker serves as the state of Iowa

climatologist and he tries to make sense of the weather patterns.

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Right in the middle of the month we experienced a one-day heat wave.  Hillaker says, that

too was unusual for the Month of May.  Le Mars set a record with a temperature of 102.

Sioux City recorded a temperature of 106, and Estherville had a high of 104 degrees,

The climatologist says despite last year's drought, April and May of 2013 will go on record

as being the wettest spring ever.

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The climatologist says the year is forming a weather pattern similar to 1947.

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So, what type of weather pattern can we expect to see for June of 2013?

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Train Truck Crash Hospitalizes One

(Le Mars) -- The crash of a Burlington Northern - Santa Fe train and a pickup truck on

Friday morning sent one person to the hospital.  43 year old Carrie Pfeil of Akron

was driving a 2010 Dodge pickup heading east-bound, crossing the tracks about two miles

southwest of Le Mars on 200th Street when she collided with the south-bound train shortly

after 8:00 a.m.  The  train was hauling tanker cars filled with crude oil.  The train hit

the truck, spinning it around shattering the truck's engine, and in the process pushing it

off the crossing.  The truck is listed as a total loss.  There was no leakage of oil from

the train.  There was no oil leaking from any of the tanker rail cars, and rail officials

determined the train was fit for transport. The driver was extricated by Le Mars Fire and

Rescue Department and was transported to, Floyd Valley hospital, then airlifted to Mercy

Medical Center in Sioux City.  Pfeil was conscious at the time of the rescue, but had

suffered injuries, although thought to be non life-threatening.  The Iowa Highway Patrol is

continuing its investigation.

Fertilizer Manufacturer Plans $1.7 Billion Expansion

SERGEANT BLUFF, Iowa (AP) - State regulators have given initial
approval for a major expansion at a western Iowa fertilizer
manufacturer.
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has issued draft air
quality permits for the $1.7 billion expansion planned by CF
Industries south of Sergeant Bluff.
The final decision on the permits will be made after a 30-day public
comment period.
A public hearing is scheduled for June 24 in Sioux City.
The company applied for 28 state air permits for the
construction of an ammonia plant and a urea plant, both to be
fueled by natural gas.
The DNR has concluded the emissions from the plants will not
violate national air quality standards.
Equipment will emit sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide and other
gases within allowed limit.
---

Soybean Planting Behind, May Affect Harvest

ANKENY, Iowa (AP) - Iowa's wettest May on record has delayed
soybean planting, which is likely to affect this fall's harvest.
As of this week only 40 percent of the state's soybean crop had
been planted. By this time last year, 95 percent was in the ground.
The five-year average is 83 percent.
Iowa Soybean Association Director of Marketing Grant Kimberley
says most of the crop likely will be in the ground by mid-June but
that will cut the amount of beans harvested per acre.
Soybean yields on average decline by a quarter of a bushel to
nearly a bushel per day the seed isn't in the ground after May 15.
Modern seed varieties have been known to catch up quickly and a
decent harvest could result if conditions are good from now on.

Catholic Schools Bishops Dinner Speaker Announced

Sioux City, Iowa--The Catholic School Foundation of the Diocese of Sioux City has announced

Father Jonathan Morris will be the featured speaker at the 2013 Bishop’s Dinner for

Catholic Schools in October.

As a news analyst for the Fox News and Fox Business Channels, Father Jonathan Morris offers

coverage of the ethical, social and religious news stories of the day.  As a Roman Catholic

priest with pastoral experience developed from serving around the world, he brings not only

a journalist’s eye to issues but also a pastor’s heart in relating how that issue will

affect the audience.

Father Jonathan was featured extensively on Fox News during Pope Benedict’s resignation and

Pope Francis’ subsequent election. His presentation at the Bishop’s Dinner will focus on

the important role of Catholic schools within families and communities.

The Bishop’s Dinner for Catholic Schools serves as the single largest fundraiser for all 16

Catholic school systems throughout the Diocese of Sioux City.  More than 6200 students

attended Catholic schools in northwest Iowa during the 2012 – 13 school year.  Last year’s

event raised more than $125,000 and drew a crowd of more than 600 attendees.

This year’s dinner is scheduled for Sunday, October 13th at the Sioux City Convention

Center. Tickets will go on sale on Monday, August 26th and can be purchased through the

diocesan website www.scdiocese.org



DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Board of Medicine says more
physicians are seeking to work in Iowa.
The board says in its annual report released Friday that it
issued 815 new licenses in 2012. That's up from 776 in in 2011 and
709 in 2010.
The report shows there are 6,700 physicians practicing in Iowa
and 691 physicians in the state's residency training programs.
At the end of 2012, the board administered 11,134 active
physician licenses, which includes doctors who work in Iowa but
have a primary practice in another state.
The board says the increase in license applicants means more
physicians are establishing practices in Iowa and more
non-residents are working on temporary assignments in the state.
Some also are using telecommunication from outside Iowa for
specialties such as radiology and pathology.





NEWTON, Iowa (AP) - A brawl involving 15 inmates at the state
prison in Newton has prompted a lockdown of the facility.
Iowa Department of Corrections officials say a fight broke out
in the recreation yard at about 10 a.m. Friday.
Tear gas was used to separate inmates and those involved have
been segregated from other prisoners.
Some of the prison guards were exposed to the tear gas and one
had a few arm scrapes but otherwise staff was not injured. No
serious inmate injuries have been reported
Movement of inmates is now restricted to cells except for meals
and medical appointments.
All visits at the medium security facility were cancelled Friday
but will resume Saturday.
Prison spokesman Fred Scaletta says prison officials are
investigating.



DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Senate Majority Leader Mike
Gronstal says he's considering a bid for governor.
Gronstal made the comment Friday during a taping of the public
television program, "Iowa Press." The Council Bluffs Democrat
says that with the legislative session over, he is "seriously"
considering running for governor in 2014.
Republican Gov. Terry Branstad has not announced if he will seek
re-election, but he is widely expected to do so. No other Democrats
have formally entered the race, though Sen. Jack Hatch, a Des
Moines Democrat, says he is seriously looking at running.
Gronstal says he expects to make a decision by the end of the
summer.




DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A Des Moines businessman has filed a
lawsuit against the Iowa Public Radio board, alleging members held
an improper private meeting.
The Des Moines Register reports Michael Gartner - a former Board
of Regents member who owns the Iowa Cubs baseball team - filed the
suit in Polk County District Court this week. Gartner argues the
board violated state public meeting rules when it met privately in
December.
That meeting came before the board fired the former chief
executive in February.
Gartner's suit seeks a declaration that Iowa Public Radio is
subject to state open-meetings laws. He also wants a judge to
review minutes from the December meeting and release the material
to the public as requested.
The board didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

   

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