Monday News, March 2
National Pheasants Forever President Visits Plyimouth County
(Le Mars) -- More than $32,000 was raised during the auction held Saturday evening during the 30th annual Plymouth County Pheasants Forever banquet. The evening proved again to be fun and beneficial with several raffles and auction items. Plymouth County Pheasants Forever was fortunate to have the National President and CEO of Pheasants Forever organization, Howard Vincent, attend the festivities. Vincent praised the leadership of Plymouth County Pheasants Forever saying the Plymouth County chapter is nationally ranked in many areas, including the number of sponsors. Vincent asked each of the Plymouth County Pheasants Forever board of directors to join him on stage to be recognized by the crowd. Victoria De Vos was honored by the Plmouth County Pheasants Forever for the "Service To Youth" award. Logan Crees of Hinton was given the Pheasants Forever Scholarship Award. Crees is a graduate of Hinton Community High School where he was involved heavily in the community through extracurricular activities including Student Council President. Throughout his high school career, he maintained a GPA of 3.6. Crees is currently attending Iowa State University majoring in Environmental Science. His passion for nature has been avid since he was a young boy. His love for nature all started because of his parents, as they would take him and his brother on camping trips throughout the summer as young boys. The Service to Wildlife Award was presented to Hank Tritz.
Remsen Fire Department Responds To Hog Barn Fire
(Remsen) -- The Remsen Fire Department was called to a hog barn fire Saturday afternoon at about 12:15 p.m. The fire was reported at 18284 on county road L-12, about a mile and a half south of Remsen. The fire was located on the same farm and it was the same barn that fire fighters responded to earlier in the week. Remsen Assistant Fire Chief, Chris Frederes believes the cause was again the ignition of methane gas that had built up causing another flash fire. Only this time, according to Frederes there was more damage.
Frederes says there were no injuries and no hogs had been burned or killed.
Le Mars Fire Department Issues Monthly Report
(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department responded to a total of 32 calls in February, according to its monthly report. Eight times the Le Mars Fire Department was called for fires, three rescue calls, 12 times for investigations or accidents, twice the Le Mars Fire Department offered Mutual aid to the Merrill Fire Department, and seven times the local fire department provided requests for services. Le Mars Fire Chief Dave Schipper reports that six classes were taught to outside agencies or businesses during February, reaching over 140 people.
Ames Apartment Fire
AMES, Iowa (AP) - Two people were treated at a hospital after a fire at an Ames apartment.
Firetrucks were sent to the apartment around 1 a.m. Sunday. Tenants used a fire extinguisher to keep the blaze from spreading to more apartments, and firefighters doused the rest of the flames.
Fire officials blamed the fire on a candle that was placed too near combustible material.
Fuel Tax Increase Discussed During Legislative Forums
(Des Moines) --Fuel tax increase and education funding were the common topics discussed Saturday morning during the legislative forums held around the county. State Senator Bill Anderson and State Representative Chuck Soderberg met with approximately 15 people in Hinton and a dozen others in Brunsville. At each legislative forum, the local lawmakers defended their votes on the fuel tax increase. State Senator Bill Anderson voted for the measure and State Represenative Soderberg voted against the fuel tax increase. At both Hinton and Brunsville, Plymouth County supervisors Don Kass and Craig Anderson displayed a map of Plymouth County showing how many bridges located in the county are needing repairs. Kass told the gathering at both forums that Plymouth County ranks fifth in the nation for the most bridges located in one county. The map had more than 97 red circles indicating those bridges that are of priority status needing immediate repairs, and perhaps another 125 bridges that would be needing to be replaced or repaired within the next five years. Kass and Craig Anderson say they were pleased to see the legislature pass the increase, as it will mean nearly an additional million dollars coming to Plymouth County for road and bridge repairs.
State And County Officials Looking Forward To Additional Funds From Fuel Tax
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - With a fuel tax increase taking effect, how quickly can Iowa drivers expect to see road improvements on their daily commutes?
State and county officials say there will be additional road work underway later this year, but it's too soon to talk specifics. The 10-cent a gallon increase starts at the pump March 1 and is expected to generate over $200 million annually for Iowa's bridges and roads, many of which are considered deteriorating or deficient.
Lyle Brehm, county engineer for Tama and Poweshiek counties, says he has a "very long list of repairs."
The Legislature approved the tax increase several days ago in a bipartisan deal. Governor Terry Branstad quickly signed it into law.
The tax was last raised in 1989.
New Psychiatric Hospital For Children Being Built In Sioux City
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A new facility offering psychiatric care and substance abuse treatment to children and teens in northwest Iowa is expected to address an important need in the region when it opens this spring.
The new Jackson Recovery Centers Child and Adolescent Recovery Hospital is expected to open in May.
Right now the closest child psychiatric crisis centers are either about 60 miles away in Cherokee, or about 90 miles away in Council Bluffs.
The $10.5 million project has been under construction in Sioux City since August. It will have 72 inpatient beds and a 12-bed psychiatric stabilization unit.
Woman's Body Found In Des Moines Alley
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Police are investigating after finding a woman's body in an alley in Des Moines.
Sergeant Jason Halifax says the body was reported shortly before 8:45 a.m. Sunday in an alley near 14th Street and 14th Place.
Halifax said the woman was 35-years-old. Her name wasn't immediately released Sunday.
Police are trying to determine how the woman died, but they are treating the death as suspicious.
Racing Commission To Distribute $72 Million To Grey Hound Industry
DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) - Iowa racing officials are reviewing a recommended plan to distribute $72 million settlement related to the end of greyhound racing in Council Bluffs.
The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission plans to review the report Thursday.
Half of the money would support the Iowa Greyhound Association's operation of the Dubuque track, which plans to run races from April 29th to October 25th on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Most of the rest of the money would go to Iowa breeders based on their past performance.
Dubuque's Mystique Casino and Bluffs Run Greyhound Park in Council Bluffs agreed to pay the settlement in exchange for ending subsidized racing.
About $1.2 million would be set aside for closing expenses at Bluffs Run and no-kill greyhound adoption centers.