(LE MARS)–Recycling success in Le Mars has reached the one-point-three million pound mark.
Assistant city administrator Bill Cole says the latest report shows substantial gains in recycling.
Cole answers recycling calls from other states.
Le Mars residents may get involved in recycling by calling city hall.
The city has received two, 20-thousand dollar grants for the recycling effort. By mid-May, Cole expects to have an answer about another request for state grant funds.
Cole’s report shows December of 2009 was an all-time high for recycling with 68-thousand 300 pounds.
(WASHINGTON, D-C)–Siouxland fire departments will receive part of more than one-million dollars in funds from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
According to Senator Chuck Grassley, the competitive grants are awarded through the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program.
The Sioux City Fire Department was awarded 136-thousand dollars. Volunteers who staff the Onawa Fire Department will receive a grant of 50-thousand 566 dollars.
The Siouxland departments may use the funds for training, equipment, wellness and fitness, as well as health and safety changes to stations and facilities.
(DES MOINES)–Okoboji won the state championship for 2-A competition at the Iowa Jazz Championships in Des Moines yesterday.
Third place in 2-A went to Rock Valley with an eighth place to Cherokee.
In 1-A, Aurelia was 4th and eighth place went to Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn
Fourth place in 3-A went to M-O-C Floyd Valley.
Gehlen Catholic and Le Mars community were among only 60 schools eligible to perform at the Iowa Jazz Championships.
(SIOUX CENTER)–The future of agriculture and a celebration of Dordt College’s growing agriculture program are the focus of Ag Day at Dordt.
The annual free, public event is Friday, April 23rd from 10 a-m to 2 p-m.
This year’s activities and displays include a large area of farm equipment provided by area dealerships to show the latest models of machinery and a petting zoo with livestock and companion pets.
Registered high school teams will also judge livestock. Ag-related contests will be held throughout the day.
(Des Moines)–A Siouxland community is included in a new financial magazine’s report of Best Places for Business and Careers.
Iowa’s capital city is on top of Forbes Magazine’s new list for Best Places For Business and Careers.
Kurt Badenhausen compiled the report for Forbes and discussed his findings in a video posted to the magazine’s website. He says 14 of the 20 cities listed in the rankings for large metros are located in the Midwest.
“We’ve seen a lot of places in the so-called heartland that have held up very well during the recession,” Badenhausen said. “They didn’t get caught up in the housing boom and bust that we’ve seen in places like Florida, in the southwest and in California.”The rankings of best places is also based on past and projected job growth, income growth and quality of life issues like crime and cultural and recreational opportunities.
Forbes also compiled a list of Best Small Places for Business and Careers. Sioux Falls, South Dakota tops the small metro rankings followed by Iowa City. Other Iowa cities on the list include Waterloo (13th), Sioux City (14th), Dubuque (15th) and Ames (17th). Kay Snyder is a spokesperson for the Iowa Department of Economic Development.
“Rankings like these give well-deserved exposure to Iowa,” Snyder said. She says the state and the cities will use the Forbes report in future marketing materials.
The rankings of best places are also based on past and projected job growth, income growth and quality of life issues like crime and cultural and recreational opportunities. (News report from Radio Iowa)
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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Gov. Chet Culver has signed into law an expansion of the treatment options for low-income cancer victims who lack coverage, ending rules that required they travel to Iowa City for care.
Under the measure Culver signed, people with cancer who previously had to seek treatment at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics can now be treated at 14 federally qualified clinics scattered around the state. As funding becomes available they could move to private providers.
The new law also sets up a state-based insurance exchange providing consumers with information about health insurance programs. That helps consumers compare premiums, benefits and out-of-pocket costs of the various health plans that are available.
ALLISON, Iowa (AP) An Iowa judge has sentenced Mark Becker to life in prison after the family of Ed Thomas gave tearful testimony about the former coach’s murder.
Becker was convicted March 2 of first-degree murder, which carries an automatic life sentence without parole in Iowa. Becker gunned down Thomas at the Aplington-Parkersburg High School weight room on June 24, 2009.
Iowa District Court Judge Stephen Carroll says Becker “imposed a nightmare” on Becker’s and Thomas’ families, and the town of Parkersburg.
Carroll says Becker made a choice when he shot Thomas.
Becker declined to say anything before his sentence. His attorney, Susan Flander, says “schizophrenia is not a choice.”
ROCKWELL CITY, Iowa (AP) Authorities say wind may have contributed to the collapse of a building under construction in Rockwell City.
The building collapsed Wednesday morning in the community in Calhoun County.
Early reports indicated that witnesses said two workers were trapped in the rubble of the building. However, authorities did not immediately confirm that.
The construction site is next to the town’s Farmers Cooperative.
Rockwell City authorities referred inquiries to the Farmers Cooperative. A woman answering calls to the cooperative declined comment.
AMES, Iowa (AP) Iowa State University officials say bacterial meningitis may have caused the death of a student.
Authorities say 22-year-old Travis James Good of Omaha reported feeling ill around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, and was taken to Mary Greeley Medical Center. He died several hours later.
Authorities say initial lab tests indicate the probable cause of death as bacterial meningitis. Additional tests are being conducted at the University of Iowa Hygienic Laboratory in Ankeny.
Thielen Student Health Center director Michelle Hendricks said Wednesday university and public health officials are contacting those who had very close contact with Good.
Hendricks said students who shared a classroom with Good are not at risk because that environment is not considered “close contact.”
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin says the White House has formally nominated Michael Bladel of Ankeny for U.S. Marshal for the Southern District of Iowa.
The Iowa Democrat made his recommendation of Bladel’s nomination last July, and the nomination will now be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration.
Bladel is currently Law Enforcement Coordinator for the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Southern District of Iowa, based in Des Moines.
Harkin said Wednesday that as a former Sheriff in Scott County and former Chief of Police in Davenport, Bladel has significant management experience and excellent relationships with law enforcement throughout the state.
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) The University of Iowa has announced plans for a new peer review process at the school.
Journalism professor and Faculty Policies Review Committee chairman Julie Andsager says the committee found the university’s various colleges do not have a standard peer-review policy.
According to university officials, the new policy requires each college to develop and implement a formal plan for periodic regular review of all tenured assistant, associate and full professors. The plan should include guidelines for a peer-review committee, its procedures and timelines, materials to be reviewed, distribution and use of the committee’s written report and mechanisms for faculty to respond.
Law Professor Shelly Kurtz says in some colleges, peer reviews are not given much weight, adding he hopes the new policy will change that.
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) Linn County officials say the renovated offices of the Board of Supervisors will be named for the county’s first female elected official.
Jean Oxley was elected supervisor in 1972 and served until 1996.
During her tenure, Oxley, a Democrat and Cedar Rapids resident, pioneered in-home services for the mentally disabled in Linn County, and built a reputation as a champion of the elderly, young and disabled.
The idea to name the building after Oxley came from Brent Oleson, the sole Republican on the Board of Supervisors. The other four supervisors endorsed the idea.
The county’s administrative building will be named Jean Oxley Linn County Public Service Center. County officials say bids will go out in June for the building’s renovation.
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