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Tuesday News, April 15

Western Iowa Technical Community College Opens Le Mars Job Center

(Le Mars) -- Western Iowa Technical Community College officially opened its new job training center in Le Mars this afternoon with a ribbon cutting and reception ceremony.  Dr. Terry Muller, president of Western Iowa Tech says the new facility will not serve like the typical classroom environment.

Listen to

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Muller offers an explaination as to the specifics of the new job training center, and what students will learn while attending the WITCC Le Mars Center.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Representatives from several of Le Mars industries were on hand for the ceremonies.  Muller says the new job training center will help many area businesses, but especially those located in Le Mars.

Listen to

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The Community College president says already the facility has attracted the interest of nearly 50 students, and he expects the new job training center will attract several more would-be students within the near future.

Listen to

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School Board Passes Proposed Budget

(Le Mars) -- Last evening, the Le Mars Community Board of Education approved the budget of $23,981,588 for the 2014-2015 school year.  The school principals reported to the board that assessment tests were completed last week, and at last evening's meeting, Superintendent of schools, Dr. Todd Wendt unveiled an archetech's drawing of the new proposed concession stand and restroom slated for completion by fall of 2015.  The new concession stand will be located at the football stadium.  School officials don't have an exact estimate of the cost for that new concession stand.  It was also reported there is an anticipated 139 seniors that will graduate, and incoming Kindergarten students for next year will be 155.

 

"Teacher Of The Year" To Be Announced Today

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Community School District will announce later this afternoon who is this year's "Teacher of the Year".  School officials plan to surprise the honored recipient at 2:30 p.m. 

 

Fire Department Respond To Gasoline Odor At Apartment

(Le Mars) -- The smell of gasoline prompted people in a Le Mars apartment complex to call the Le Mars Fire Department.  Fire officials arrived at 420 12th Street Southeast at about 8:10 p.m. Monday evening.  The residents of the apartment complex were evaculated for a short time while fire officials investigated as to the origin of the gasoline smell.  It was determined a Chevy blazer in the garage beneath the apartments had been leaking gasoline which caused the odor and the concern.  Fire officals were able to use an absorbant to clean up the spilled gasoline, and they used fans to help ventilate the odor from the apartment complex building.  Residents of the apartment complex were able to return to their dwellings within a few minutes.

 

City Council To Have Second Reading On Code Changes

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars City Council is scheduled to convene today at the city hall council chambers.  The council will hold a second reading for the proposed code changes.  In addition, the council will hear the decision by the city public library board not to participate in the county wide library association.  The council is also expected to take action on the new proposed public works building project.  The city council will hear an annual report from the Convention and Visitor's Bureau.

 

Supervisors To Discuss Termination of Development Agreement For Plymouth Oil

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors have a light agenda for today's meeting.  There are no scheduled reports to be delivered before the county supervisors.  It is expected, the supervisors will review the termination of the development agreement with Plymouth Oil.  Plymouth Oil has filed for bankruptcy.

 

Hard Rock Casino Starting To Receive Slot Machines

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - More than 100 slot machines have been delivered for the new Hard Rock casino in Sioux City.
     General manager Todd Moyer says officials spent more than nine months researching machines and games and visiting other Iowa casinos to check the competition. Moyer says Hard Rock's selections included "the best of the best" slot machines.
     The slots will accept bets ranging from a penny to $25 per play.
     Up to 850 machines should be installed for the opening of the $128.5 million project. The opening is expected to occur by late July or early August.
     ---

 

Branstad Asks Legislature To Revise Law Concerning Coaches And Sexual Abuse

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad has called on the Legislature to take action following an Iowa Supreme Court ruling that found school coaches cannot be convicted of sexual exploitation by a school employee under current law. 
     The Iowa Supreme Court ruled 5-2 Friday to overturn the conviction of a former Bloomfield basketball coach who had sex with a 16-year-old girl on his team, saying coaches without teaching licenses are not considered school employees and therefore cannot be convicted. In a statement Monday, Branstad urged lawmakers to pass legislation to include school coaches in the law to protect Iowa students from sexual exploitation.
     Branstad says action should be taken now, while the Legislature remains in session.
     The session has no specific end date, but lawmakers will stop receiving expense payments after April 22.

 

Senate Passes Plan To Increase Pre-Schools Funding

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A plan to enroll more 4-year-olds in preschool and incentivize the creation or expansion of programs has won the Iowa Senate's approval.
     The Senate voted 28-22 Monday in favor of the measure, which now goes to the House for further consideration. All those opposed were Republicans.
     The Iowa Statewide Voluntary Preschool Program, established in 2007, already funds preschool for 4-year-olds. The legislation would offer additional funds to school districts with existing programs or those that initiate new programs, in an effort to expand preschool enrollment. These incentives would be offered for three years beginning in 2015, and would be based on increased enrollment.
     Sen. Herman Quirmbach, an Ames Democrat, says the legislation is meant to increase participation in the preschool program and improve outreach efforts to Iowa children.

 


 

 

 


 

 



   

Monday Afternoon News, April 14

Western Iowa Technical Community College Opens New Job Center

(Le Mars) -- Western Iowa Technical Community College officially opened its new job training center in Le Mars this afternoon with a ribbon cutting and reception ceremony.  Dr. Terry Muller, president of Western Iowa Tech says the new facility will not serve like the typical classroom environment.

 Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Muller offers an explaination as to the specifics of the new job training center, and what students will learn while attending the WITCC Le Mars Center.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Representatives from several of Le Mars industries were on hand for the ceremonies.  Muller says the new job training center will help many area businesses, but especially those located in Le Mars.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The Community College president says already the facility has attracted the interest of nearly 50 students, and he expects the new job training center will attract several more would-be students within the near future.

Listen to

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

Auto Accident On C-38 Causes Injuries

(Remsen) -- Both the Remsen and Oyens fire departments responded to a car accident that occured Sunday afternoon.  The accident was reported at about 4:30 p.m. and was located on County Road C-38 between Pioneer and Polk Avenues.  The driver, 67 year old Thomas Selk of Larrabee, was eastbound on County Road C-38 and lost control due to the slush and snow covered roads.  The vehicle went onto the south shoulder and lost control.  Selk corrected the vehicle back onto the roadway and then entered the north ditch.  The vehicle rolled one time and came to a rest on its wheels.  Selk sustained injuries to his head, neck and back and was transported to the Floyd Valley Hospital.  He was later transferred to Mercy Medical Center of Sioux City.  Selk's condition is listed as critical.  The other occupants of the vehicle were uninjured but were transported to Floyd Valley Hospital as a precaution.  All the occupants were wearing seat belts.

 

 

Alta House Destroyed By Fire

(Storm Lake) --  According to Buena Vista County Sheriff Doug Simons at approximately 4:47 p.m. Saturday evening the Buena Vista County Communications Center received a report of a structure fire located at 5510  50th Avenue near Alta.  The Alta Fire Department and the Buena Vista Sheriff's Office were dispatched to the fire.  Upon arrival, deputies and firefighters encountered a residence fully engulfed in flames.  The Alta Fire Department requested assistance from the Aurelia Fire Department, Storm Lake Fire Department, and Peterson Fire Department.  It was determined the property owner had been burning yard debris which had spread to the house.  The property owner who was present at the residence at the time of the fire was uninjured.  It was determined that the residence is considered a total loss.  An estimate of loss will be in excess of $70,000.  The Buena Vista Regional Medical Center ambulance also assisted at the scene.

 

Branstad Says Investigations Are Politically Motivated

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad says Democrats pursuing investigations into confidential settlement agreements, do-not-hire lists, and other issues are practicing partisan politics at its worst.
     At his Monday news conference, Branstad argued lawmakers ought to focus on the budget and policy issues instead of making accusations using politically charged words.
     Two hours later House Democrats called for an expanded investigation into allegations some employees have been blacklisted from future state employment and other issues.
     They proposed a resolution authorizing the House Oversight Committee to hire an independent legal counsel that could make recommendations for legislative action or prosecution if crimes are suspected.
     The Senate Government Oversight Committee also is holding another hearing to ask questions about government payments to former workers for secrecy and problems they believe exist in the executive branch.

 

Postal Marks Make Some Absentee Ballots Invalid

     DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Lawmakers have been unable to change a state law on postmarked absentee ballots that may accidentally void some valid ballots.
     Election officials say some valid ballots over the years could have been invalidated because the Postal Service doesn't always postmark business reply mail envelopes.
     The  state law has been in effect for years. But an accompanying administrative rule that allowed election officials to check the date on the enclosed voter affidavit was repealed in 2011.
     The newspaper reports data collected in local elections from 2011 and 2013 show the issue is widespread throughout the state.
     Legislators this session have failed to find a solution to the problem. Officials say the practice could continue during high-profile statewide contests this year, including the race for governor.

 

Branstad Awards Two Fuel Stations With Grants

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad has awarded grants to two fueling sites in an effort to expand access higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel.
     The Oak Street Station in Inwood and Farmers Cooperative in Mount Ayr will each receive $125,000 as part of the Fueling Our Future initiative.
     Inwood is about 35 miles north of Le Mars. Mount Ayr is about 70 miles southwest of Des Moines.
     Farmers Cooperative will construct a new fueling site to provide different ethanol and biodiesel blends. It also will receive $100,000 through the Iowa Renewable Fuels Infrastructure program.
     The Oak Street Station will build a new site offering five renewable fuel dispensers.
     Branstad says in a statement that supporting these projects will help grow the local economy as well.

 


 

 



   

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