Thursday Afternoon News, December 4
Le Mars Police Arrest Man For Drug Possession
(Le Mars) -- Le Mars Police have arrested a 20 year old Le Mars man for possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia and for distributing drugs to minors. A search warrant was isssued Wednesday evening, and police arrested Brendon Arens of 1134 1st Street Southeast. In addition to finding controlled substances and drug paraphernalia, police also located property, a purse and contents that had been reported stolen. Arens was arrested and taken into custody and transported to the Plymouth County Jail.
Woodbury County Supervisors Look At Hiring Mediator Consultant
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A consultant to help mediate conflicts has been proposed for the Board of Supervisors in Woodbury County.
Board Chairman George Boykin made the suggestion at Tuesday's meeting, saying that for the past several months, "We've not had a good dialogue on the board."
Sheriff Dave Drew and county Auditor Pat Gill have used the public comment portion of weekly board meetings to address the five-member board. They've criticized various aspects of the courthouse security plan.
In addition, Supervisor Matthew Ung has confronted the board about how bills are approved and oversight of operations.
Boykin says a third party is needed to bring order to county government.
No decision about the consultant was made Tuesday.
Sioux City Voters Turn Down Proposed School Levy
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Officials say plans for one or more new elementary schools and improvements at three high schools likely will have to be shelved, now that Sioux City school district voters have rejected a new property tax levy.
At Tuesday's special election, voters rejected the levy by a ratio of nearly 2-to-1. The turnout was less than 9 percent.
School officials say the new levy was needed because a 1-cent sales tax approved in 1998 for school infrastructure is set to expire in 2018. The new levy would have raised an estimated $45 million over 10 years. It would have raised property taxes about $70 a year on a home valued at $105,000.
Rotta Comments On Farm Bureau State Convention
(Le Mars) -- The state's largest farm organization, the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, concluded its annual meeting and convention on Wednesday. Plymouth County Farm Bureau president, Joe Rotta of Merrill attended the conference. He says he was impressed with a speaker from England that addressed the issue of Genetic Modified Organisms. Rotta says Mark Lynas told the Farm Bureau delegates he had a change of opinion regarding GMO's.
Rotta says Lynas simply repeated the myths, and false rhetoric regarding Genetically Modified Organisms.
Rotta says the speaker had a complete reversal of opinion with GMO's once he was informed with scientific facts to back up the point.
Appeals Court Looking At Jury's Verdict
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A panel of Iowa Court of Appeals judges is considering whether a jury verdict awarding a former Lee County maintenance director $186,000 last year for his firing by county supervisors was proper.
Rick Carter sued the county claiming he was fired after accusing the supervisors of mismanagement.
His attorney, Curtis Dial, argued he is protected by Iowa's whistleblower law and a jury agreed.
The supervisors' attorney, Steven Ort, asked Judge Mary Ann Brown to throw out the verdict claiming Carter was fired for incompetence and he lacked proof of mismanagement.
Brown agreed, overturned the jury and dismissed the case.
Carter's attorney argued to the appeals court Thursday that Brown's ruling oversteps the whistleblower law.
Ort argued Carter had no reasonable belief of mismanagement.
A written ruling will be issued later.