Wednesday News, September 30th
Deadline Approaches For Community Foundation Grants
Soybean Harvest Producing High Yields
(Le Mars) -- Farmers are busy harvesting this year's soybean crop, and so far, many farmers are finding higher than expected yields. Iowa State University Extension Crops Specialist Joel DeJong says the range has been from 60 bushels per acre to the upper 70's.
Weather conditions this year have been favorable for producing the higher soybean yields, but DeJong also credits improvements in technology and better management decisions in having a hand for the higher soybean yields.
The extension crops specialist says soybean moisture levels have been ideal for the beginning of the harvest season.
DeJong says if the moisture levels drop down too far, it could create additional problems for farmers.
DeJong estimates that at least ten percent of the soybeans within this region have already been harvested.
CF Industries Needs More Construction Workers
SERGEANT BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - More than 3,600 workers are helping construct a $2 billion fertilizer plant being built near Sioux City, and hundreds more workers will be hired soon.
The workforce at the sprawling CF Industries plant is more than double what the company originally had planned.
Project director Nick DeRoos says the construction peak will be in late October or early November, when more than 4,000 workers will be employed.
Work on the three-year project is about half complete and will likely continue into March. Inclement weather and other problems had slowed construction, prompting contractors to increase staffing to meet the targeted completion date.
When finished, the plant will triple the complex's production of ammonia, which is used in nitrogen-based fertilizer.
Ho Chunck To Expand With Economic Development Projects
(Sioux City) -- Ho Chunk Incorporated, the economic development company owned by the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, is planning on more development in and around the Sioux City metro area. Ho Chunk C-E-O Lance Morgan says one of the projects is developing a 200 acre stretch of land on the Nebraska side of the Missouri River.
He says they are going to announce in a couple of weeks the plans for a "new urbanism" type of community where walking and activities are integrated into the plan. That project in South Sioux City, Nebraska is directly across from where the old John Morrell plant was located.
The company already owns some properties in Sioux City and is planning on building some more in the downtown area.
Morgan says they've bought a couple of buildings on Pearl Street and are going to build some apartments and restaurant space. He says Ho Chunk is committed to investing around 100 million dollars in the various projects in the Tri-State metro area. Morgan says Ho Chunk's revenues are expected to total around 270 million dollars in 2015.
Economists Say Jeb Bush's Plan Will Not Lower Gas Prices
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Oil industry economists say a link between ending a 40-year oil export ban and lower prices at the gas pump is not as direct as Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush would have voters believe in his new energy proposal.
Bush's overall premise that lifting the ban would expand economic growth holds up to independent scrutiny. However, environmentalists say the negative impact on the planet would be too great.
Eliminating the export ban, enacted in the 1970s, is the key piece of Bush's proposal, first published in a paper online Tuesday. Bush cites studies suggesting a drop of 6 cents per gallon over time if the ban were lifted.
Many economists note that oil is a global commodity and say U.S. production has little to do with overall pricing.
Judge Upholds Law Requiring Corporate Boards To Reveal Money Spent On Politicians
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A judge is upholding an Iowa law that requires the boards of corporations and labor unions to approve any money they spend to influence elections.
U.S. District Judge Robert Pratt ruled Monday the board-approval requirement does not violate the right to free association or illegally restrain speech.
He says the requirement ensures the integrity of the political system by letting the public know the spending is backed by the group and not "just an individual with access" to its bank account.
Iowa lawmakers passed the requirement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that corporations and unions can spend money directly from their own treasuries to influence campaigns.
Pratt's ruling dismisses a longrunning lawsuit filed by the Iowa Right to Life Committee, which argued the requirement was unconstitutional.