Home News Friday News, July 17th

Friday News, July 17th


TestIowa To Set Up In Plymouth County

(Le Mars, IA) — Beginning Monday, July 20, Floyd Valley Healthcare will be hosting a free Test Iowa Clinic site. Any Iowan can be tested for COVID-19 through Test Iowa. The Floyd Valley Healthcare site will be located in the north parking area and is open Monday – Friday from 1 – 5 p.m. by appointment

To receive an appointment, an assessment needs to be completed at TestIowa.com. Once on the site, click “START NOW,” complete the assessment and choose Plymouth County under Test Iowa Clinics. The QR Code generated from this assessment will be necessary to be screened. Please park in the
spaces reserved for Test Iowa screening designated by the Test Iowa signage.

If you have additional questions, you may go to TestIowa.com/faq.




701 New COVID-19 Cases in Iowa, 18 Additional Deaths

(Des Moines, IA) — The Iowa Department of Public Health is reporting 701 more positive tests for COVID-19, increasing the state’s total to 36-thousand-737 cases. Eighteen more Iowans have died from coronavirus which brings the death toll to 777 since the pandemic began. State health officials say 195 people are hospitalized with COVID-19, 65 patients are in intensive care and 34 are on ventilators. More than 27-thousand-300 patients
have recovered in the state. There have been 392-thousand-912 tests completed in Iowa.



Iowa Report Suggests Rising Infection Rates Call For New Restrictions

(Des Moines, IA) — A report prepared for the White House Cornavirus Task Force suggests Iowa is among 18 states where rising infection rates should prompt new restrictions. The internal documents were first obtained by The Center for Public Integrity. Five Iowa counties are in what the analysis refers to as a “red zone” where 10 percent or more of those undergoing
testing are confirmed to have the virus. Those counties are Sioux, Osceola, Webster, Franklin and Clarke Counties. The recommendation is that bars and gyms be closed in those counties and social gatherings be limited to 10 or fewer people. The report uses the phrase “yellow zone” to describe the spread
of COVID in 42 other Iowa counties. The recommendation is that face coverings be required in public places in the zed and yellow zone areas — which cover 47 of Iowa’s 99 counties. Governor Kim Reynolds has called on Iowans to “do the right thing” and voluntarily wear masks.




Sioux City Hospital Decides To Stop Delivering Babies

(Sioux City, IA) — MercyOne Siouxland Medical Center in Sioux City has announced it will no longer deliver babies starting September 1st. MercyOne and its board of directors say the decision comes after reviewing all services and says the move will allow the hospital to expand other services and programs not offered elsewhere in the region. Spokeswoman Jenna Rehnstrom
says those in the obstetrics department can move to other
departments, or have the option of working at another MercyOne facility. A spokeswoman for Sioux City’s other hospital — Unity Point-St. Lukes– says they are ready and able to care for the additional moms and babies.




13 Million Dollars Devoted To Help Iowa Small Businesses

(Des Moines) — Ten Iowa organizations are splitting just over 13-MILLION dollars in federal grants — to be distributed as loans to small businesses and entrepreneurs who’ve taken a financial hit during the pandemic. Rick Hunsaker is executive director of the Region XII (12) Council of Governments, which is getting a two MILLION dollar grant for a revolving loan fund.

Hunsaker got confirmation of the federal grant yesterday (Thursday) and is hoping the funds are available by September 1st.

Hunsaker’s organization will be able to loan the money to businesses in Carroll and five surrounding counties. The other award winners can distribute loans in 56 OTHER counties.
The other grant recipients are as follows:
$4.675 M to East Central Iowa Council of Governments based in Cedar Rapids; $1.65 M to the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission in West Burlington; $1.529 M to the Southern Iowa Development Group in Creston; $550,000 to the Iowa Northland Regional Economic Development Commission in Waterloo;
$550,000 to the Mid-Iowa Development Association Council of Governments in Fort Dodge; $550,000 to the Mid-Iowa Development Fund in Polk City; $550,000 to the North Iowa Area Council of Governments in Mason City; $550,000 to the Southwest Iowa Planning Council in Atlantic; $549,831 to the Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission in Postville.




Supreme Court Rejects Last-Minute Request to Delay Honken Execution

(Terra Haute, IN) — North-central Iowa drug kingpin Dustin Honken will be put to death today (Friday) after the U-S Supreme Court today turned down a last-minute request to stop his execution. Fifty-two-year-old Honken of Britt was convicted of murder while engaged in drug trafficking, witness
tampering, and soliciting the murder of a witness in connection with the 1993 murders of five people. Their bodies were found buried in a field near Mason City in the fall of 2000. A federal judge Tuesday ruled that he would not intervene to delay Honken’s execution date. The U-S Supreme Court this
morning denied an application by Honken’s spiritual advisor asking for a stay of execution until the pandemic recedes.




Secretary Of State Seeks Permission To Mail Absentee Ballot Requests

(Des Moines, IA) — Iowa’s Secretary of State will ask the Iowa Legislative Council for permission to mail absentee ballot request forms to every active Iowa voter. Secretary of State Paul Pate mailed the forms to voters before the June Primary, encouraging Iowans to vote-from-home during the pandemic rather than risk standing in line at a polling place. There was record participation in the primary and about 80 percent voted early. Ten days
later, the Republican-led legislature voted to force Pate to seek approval from the Legislative Council if he planned a similar mailing in the future.
Pate, in a document for the Council’s meeting at 4:30 this (Friday) afternoon, says he’ll use federal “Help America Vote” money to cover the cost of the mailing. Some county auditors said they could not afford that cost.




Iowa Gun Sales Skyrocket In June

(Des Moines, IA) — Protests, rioting and unrest have resulted in rapidly increasing gun sales and permits in Iowa. The state Department of Public Safety reports it handled seven thousand newly-issued gun permits in June.
Between January 1st and June 30th, Iowa law enforcement agencies report they issued 45 percent more nonprofessional permits to carry a firearm than they did in 2019 due the same time period. For comparison, the state issued
eight-thousand-seven permits last month, compared to just over 23 hundred in the same month last year.