Home News KLEM News AM Update Sept. 8, 2010

KLEM News AM Update Sept. 8, 2010


(LE MARS)–Plymouth County department heads may choose to contract their fuel purchases with Gasrite of Omaha and Sioux City.

Plymouth County supervisors, on a motion by Don Kass, Tuesday authorized department heads to utilize Gasrite.

 Kass said he wanted to make one thing clear to the public.

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Gasrite issues cards similar to credit cards to fuel users that trigger payments to fuel businesses and monthly bills to the county.

During a meeting Tuesday, Supervisor Craig Anderson talked with Tim Johnson of Gasrite about the way the program works and county purchases.

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Supervisor Gordon Greene saw the issue as up to department heads comparing it to the annual purchase of a motorgrader for the Secondary Road Department.

New business’s request gets Council backing

(LE MARS)–A new business may make a decision about locating in Le Mars this month.

The City Council Tuesday agreed to apply for funds from a state program and state tax credits for North American Co-Pack Iowa L-L-C. 

Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Neal Adler Adler said the requests were not new to the Council. Adler told the Council said the request for the business had been done a number of times over the years for other businesses.

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The Council approved a request to the Iowa Department of Economic Development for Value Added Ag Program loan funding and state tax credits.

Adler said the city would probably know within the next couple of weeks whether Le Mars is where the firm is going to locate.

Specifics about the products North American Co-Pack Iowa L-L-C would make and employment numbers were not discussed at the Council meeting.  

Two accidents, two injuries Tueday afternoon in Le Mars

(LE MARS)–Two people were injured in related traffic accidents in southwest Le Mars Tuesday afternoon.

A preliminary report from Le Mars Police indicates a moped driven by 14-year-old Nicole Orban of Le Mars was traveling north on Sixth Avenue Southwest. Orban stopped at the stop sign at the intersection of Fourth Street Southwest and crossed Fourth Street.

Police report the moped was struck by a car being driven west on Fourth Street by 81-year-old Marjorie Loutsch of Le Mars.

Another accident was reported when Loutsch was struck after she got out of her car to help Orban. The driver of the car, 87-year-old Vincent Roeser of Le Mars, was driving east on Fourth Street Southwest and began to make a left turn onto Sixth Avenue Southwest. Police say Roeser did not see Loutsch because he was distracted by the first accident. His car struck Loutsch from behind and she was thrown to the ground from the impact.

Le Mars Ambulance took Loutsch and Orban to Floyd Valley Hospital. Le Mars Ambulance and Le Mars Fire assisted police.

Fire fighters respond to two electrical fires

(LE MARS)–Stop signs replaced traffic signals at two downtown Le Mars intersections after a street light was reported on fire early this (Wednesday) morning.

The Le Mars Fire Department was called to 18 Plymouth Street Southwest about one this morning and completed the call about 45 minutes later.

Two, four-way stop signs were placed at the intersection of Plymouth Street and First Avenue Southwest and Plymouth Street and Central Avenue.

Le Mars Fire also responded to a report of a small electrical fire at 41 Prospect Street Southwest about eight Tuesday night. According to the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office fire log, the call was completed in about 45 minutes.

Fire Chief Dave Schipper says the electrical fire was in a counter top mounted range stove. After the stove had been used to prepare the evening meal, the Van Wyne family noticed a noise. Schipper says there was electrical arcing under the knobs controlling the stove burners. Power was shut off to the applicance. There was no smoke or fire damage.

Endowment receives its largest gift

(LE MARS)–Gehlen Catholic Schools Endowment Fund is marking its 23rd anniversary with an announcement about the largest gift in its history.

The Endowment hosts the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce Coffee this (Wednesday) morning from 9:30 to 10:30 in the school library.

According to information released by the endowment board, an investment of 184-thousand dollars was added to the Eva Waite Tuition Assistance Fund by a donor who wishes to remain anonymous.

The endowment fund is restricted and the income is used only to assist families attending Gehlen Catholic School with their Transitional Kindergarten through 12th Grade School tuition. The money is for tuition that is not covered by the Monsignor Lafferty Tuition Foundation.

During an annual meeting in August, the board noted the largest total donations in one year were received and invested. The total was 238-thousand dollars. Donations are not spent–only the earnings from the invested principal. The earnings support Gehlen Catholic’s operating budget and K-12 student assistance.

Investment earnings of more than 70-thousand dollars were transferred to Gehlen Catholic during the last year.

The board announced a new scholarship opportunity for graduates. A recent substantial donation will restrict its earnings to fund an annual award to help Gehlen Catholic high school seniors with tuition for a technical or trade school.

Michael Ruhland of Le Mars was elected to a three-year term on the endowment board replacing retiring trustee Dr. Wayne Meylor who served 12 years. Ruhland is a certified financial planner and a 1976 graduate of Gehlen Catholic.

Chuck Kellen of Le Mars was re-elected to a three-year term. Board officers re-elected to another year include chairperson Dick Ahlers; Kellen as vice chairperson; and Joe Kessenich as secretary-treasurer.

Little Sioux makes energy improvements

(LE MARS)–Energy efficiency is growing just like the production at a Cherokee County renewable fuels plant.

Daryl Haack is a Primghar corn grower who helped organize ethanol maker Little Sioux Corn Processors of rural Marcus.

Haack says the ethanol plant was built to produce 40 million gallons of ethanol a year and has been expanded twice, with production exceeding the design and using energy more efficiently.

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Haack explains more work to make the Little Sioux operation efficient is planned.

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Energy conservation improvements have been made by Little Sioux staff as well as outside engineers. 

Storm Lake man found after search

(STORM LAKE)–A search for a missing Storm Lake man Saturday was a success.

Sixty-two-year-old James Sheplear had been kayaking on the Little Sioux River with friends and became separated from the group.

After he’d been missing for about an hour, the Buena Vista County Sheriff’s office was contacted. A search began in the Blue Bird Creek Access area upstream from the Linn Grove Dam at around 9:45 p-m.

The sheriff’s office, the Sioux Rapids Fire Department and First Responders set up for a search of the river along with two people from Sioux Rapids who volunteered boats.

Sheplear was found about a mile upstream from the access in some backwater off the main river.

Authorities say he’d become disoriented and lost his way, but was not injured.

The search and returning Sheplear to the access took about two hours.

Crop report: corn harvest ahead of average

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowa’s corn harvest is already under way as corn development continue well ahead of average.

In its weekly crop report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported Tuesday that chopping corn for silage and harvesting seed corn are in full swing in Iowa, while harvesting for grain is starting in fields that were planted early.

Corn development in Iowa in all three stages is at least nine days ahead of last year and the five-year average.

Forty-five percent of Iowa’s soybean acres have turned color. That’s ahead of last year’s 26 percent and the average of 39 percent.

Some hay producers continued their third cutting last week while some started a fourth cutting.

Last week’s light rains and lower humidity also relieved stress on Iowa livestock.

Retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor will speak on judicial retention

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A coalition of legal, business and labor advocates is working to support three Iowa Supreme Court justices under fire for a decision last year legalizing gay marriage.

The coalition plans a panel discussion Wednesday featuring retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. She has been outspoken about what she sees as an effort to politicize the judicial process, something supporters of the Iowa Supreme Court justices say is happening in the state.

Backers of the justices oppose a campaign led by former Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats to oust the judges in November’s retention election.

Vander Plaats says the justices should be replaced because their ruling reflected judicial activism.

Celebration Iowa suspended

DECORAH, Iowa (AP) Luther College is suspending its Celebration Iowa summer music program for 2011 while the school evaluates the program.

The college made the announcement Tuesday. A Luther College project for high school students, Celebration Iowa completed its 28th year this summer.

Rob Larson, who oversees the program, says increased costs and declining philanthropic support are among reasons why the college decided to assess the program for the coming year.

About three-dozen high school students are selected each year to take part in Celebration Iowa. Since 1983, more than 700 students from about 250 Iowa communities have participated.

Celebration Iowa features an eight-week performing tour that provides entertainment at festivals, fairs and concerts statewide.

Grassley will debate Conlin

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) An aide to Iowa Republican Sen. Charles Grassley says he’s agreed to a radio debate with Democratic challenger Roxanne Conlin less than a week before the Nov. 2 election.

Grassley spokesman Eric Woolson announced Tuesday that the five-term senator accepted the Oct. 28 debate on WHO-AM. The debate will run from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Conlin spokesman Mark Daley says the Democrat is checking her schedule to see if she can accept the proposed debate.

Daley says Conlin also has accepted debate invitations from TV stations that have offered to broadcast the events statewide. Daley called upon Grassley to join Conlin in those debates.

The two have agreed to one joint appearance Friday on the Iowa Public Television program, “Iowa Press.”

Sexual assault investigated by U of Iowa police

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) University of Iowa police say a woman reported an attempted sexual assault on campus.

The woman says she was crossing the Finkbine Golf Course driving range about 2 p.m. Saturday to return to her car when she passed two men. The woman says one of the men pushed her to the ground and attempts were made to remove her clothes.

Police say the woman fought off her attacker, ran to her car and escaped. She did not report any physical injuries.

Both men are described as college-age white men. The main suspect is short and stocky with a dark beard; he was wearing a black fleece jacket, cargo shorts and a white athletic hat. The other man also wore cargo shorts and is taller and thinner than the main suspect.

Romney returns to Iowa for Branstad campaign

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney will return to Iowa next month to campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate Terry Branstad.

Branstad spokesman Tim Albrecht says the 2008 Republican presidential candidate will visit Iowa on Oct. 26.

It’s Romney’s second visit to the state since his disappointing showing in the state’s 2008 caucuses. Romney finished a distant second to former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee despite campaigning heavily in Iowa.

Romney is frequently mentioned as a potential presidential candidate in 2012. His trip to the state will follow planned September stops in Iowa by two others mentioned as possible presidential candidates former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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