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Monday News, October 26th


Polk Avenue To Close For Railroad Crossing Repairs

(Le Mars) — Plymouth County Secondary Roads Department is closing Polk Avenue between Highway 3 and 160th Street for maintenance work on the railroad crossing. It is expected the repairs to the railroad crossing will be completed by the end of the day.




City Closes 6th Avenue Southwest For Repairs

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Street Department has closed part of 6th Avenue southwest. The street closure will start at 8th Street southwest and continue until 11th Street southwest on 6th Avenue southwest. The contractor, Wiltgen Construction, will be doing some work with the sanitary sewer, which is located in the middle of that street.




Feenstra And Scholten Face Eace Other For Iowa’s 4th District Race

(Des Moines) — Iowa’s fourth congressional district race features a Republican who knocked out G-O-P incumbent Steve King in the June Primary and a Democrat who came within three points of defeating King in 2018. Radio Iowa’s O. Kay Henderson reports.

Republicans have a 77-thousand voter registration edge over Democrats in the fourth congressional district. Democrat J.D. Scholten of Sioux City, a former professional baseball player who is a paralegal, is counting on his strategy of visiting all 374 communities in the district this year. “I think one of the biggest strengths of our campaign both last cycle and this cycle is showing up,” Scholten says. “We went to all 39 counties at least
three times last cycle. Last fall, we did the ‘Don’t Forget About Us’ tour where we went into towns of under a 1000 people and did town halls there.”

Republican Randy Feenstra (FEEN-struh) of Hull, a Dordt University business professor, is a former Sioux County Treasurer who promises to push for more federal tax cuts. “I’ve served in the Iowa Senate the last 12 years where I
have produced results time and time again,” Feenstra says. “…When I get to congress, I’ll do the same thing. I’ll also fight against the Green New Deal and the government take-over of health care.” Feenstra says he wants to serve on the House Ag Committee if elected and help write the 2022 Farm Bill.
“We’re the second largest district in the nation when it comes to
agriculture,” Feenstra says. “Virtually everything pivots around agriculture.
When our agriculture is successful, our Main Streets are successful.”

Scholten says he’ll pressure federal agencies to break up the monopolies in agriculture. “Right now in hogs, four companies control 70% of the market share,” Scholten says. “Right now cattle, four companies control 85% of the market share.” Scholten says if elected, he will not support giving Nancy
Pelosi another term as House Speaker and will press for campaign finance reform. Feenstra met with President Trump in the Oval Office in late September and Trump, who won the 4th district overwhelmingly in 2016, has tweeted his “compete and total endorsement” of Feenstra.




Open Enrollment For Medicare Is Now Occurring

(Des Moines) — Open enrollment is now underway for Medicare for thousands of Iowans and others across the country. The administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Seema Verma says it’s time to review your plan.

She says one of the new programs is for insulin.

Verma says there are some other options for services in the plans as well.

Verma says you can do everything online.

You can go to medicare.gov to review your plan. There are more than 637-thousand Iowans on Medicare.




Pork Industry Is Important To Local Economy

(Le Mars) — October is Pork Month, and in an effort to call more attention to the economic impact of the pork industry to the state’s economy, the Iowa Pork Producers Association recently released an economic study. The state’s pork producers organization shows the impact on the state, as well as with 20
individual counties, including Plymouth, Sioux, and Woodbury counties. Iowa leads the nation in pork production with more than 24 million head of hogs, and overshadows both North Carolina and Minnesota, the next two leading hog producing states, by more than ten million head. Bill Tentinger is a Plymouth County pork producer, and a former state president, as well as a current director with the National Pork Board.

Tentinger explains the study conducted by the state’s pork producer organization.

Hog production has a prominent position within northwest Iowa. Sioux County ranks second in the state with pork production with 1.3 million head of hogs, and Plymouth County holds down the fifth spot raising 1.0 million head. Lyon County is in between as the third largest county in Iowa with the number of hogs at 1.1 million head. Tentinger says the trend has shown a continued
growth in pork production.

Focusing our attention only with Plymouth County, Tentinger says there are 180 hog farms within our county with 1,552 jobs created because of the county’s pork industry.

Tentinger says in Sioux County the pork industry is responsible for nearly $300 million dollars in household income, and more than 4,000 jobs. Hogs raised in Plymouth County will consume approximately 112,000 acres of corn, and 82,500 acres of soybeans.

We will continue our series of reports focusing on the economic impact of the pork industry with future news updates.




DNR Investigates Deer Hunter Fatality From Tree Stand

(Ollie, IA) — The Iowa D-N-R says an autopsy will be done on the body of a man found dead after falling from a tree stand while deer hunting in rural Ollie in Keokuk County. Seventy-six-year-old Raymond Byers was found Thursday after a report he missing when he didn’t return home from hunting during the
muzzle loader deer season. The D-N-R is reminding hunters to take full precautions when using a tree stand to hunt deer.




Murder Trial For Sioux City Man Delayed Until Next Summer

(Sioux City, IA) — The murder trial for a 24-year-old man accused of killing his girlfriend’s infant daughter has been delayed until next July.
The judge agreed to continue Tayvon Davis’ trial during a hearing last week.
Davis has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, child endangerment resulting in the death of a child, and multiple acts of child endangerment. The 19-month-old girl died in 2018. An autopsy found several severe injuries to her head and kidney, with multiple fractures to her vertebrae and ribs.




Iowa Man Accused Of Sexually Abusing Child 2011-2018

(Des Moines, IA) — A 63-year-old Iowa man is accused of sexually abusing a child repeatedly over a seven-year period. Investigators say the abuse started when the victim was five years old. Joseph Charles Pray was arrested Friday afternoon. Investigators say he also sexually exploited the victim by
possession of a photograph of a child being sexually abused. Pray is charged with five counts of second-degree sex abuse, third-degree sex abuse, and sexual exploitation of a minor. He’s being held at the Polk County Jail.




Cornell Offers Up Front Scholarship To New Students

(Mt. Vernon, IA) — Cornell College in Mt. Vernon is now offering a guaranteed 30-thousand dollar scholarship each year for new students from Iowa who live on campus. Cornell Vice President for Enrollment Management Wendy Beckemeyer says the “Iowa Promise Scholarship” does not require any
additional application and is a way to let students know upfront the aid they will get. Beckemeyer says it can be confusing in trying to determine the cost of private versus public schools, and this information should make it easier.
She says the scholarship along with other aid can bring the cost of Cornell closer to state universities.