Home News Wednesday News, December 2nd

Wednesday News, December 2nd


Fire and Rescue Department Issues November Monthly Report

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department has released its monthly report for November. The fire department responded to a total of 43 calls during November. The breakdown includes 15 fire calls, five rescues, 14 investigations, eight requests for services, and once offering mutual aid to the Oyens Fire Department.




Pizza Ranch Celebrates 25 Years Of Business In Le Mars

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Pizza Ranch restaurant held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday morning, as a way to mark their 25th anniversary of doing business in Le Mars. Owners Tyler Sickles, Brad Cleveringa, and Owner-Operator, Amanda Ruden say Le Mars has been a good location for sales.
Sickles and Cleveringa acquired the Le Mars Pizza Ranch franchise more than 11 years ago.

Pizza Ranch is located at one of the major intersections in town, sitting at the southwest corner of Plymouth Street and Central Avenue. Brad Cleveringa says it certainly has benefited the restaurant to be in the middle of a vibrant downtown.

Amanda Ruden has been an employee, and now owner and operator, of Pizza Ranch for the past 14 years. She says it is tough to remain competitive with so many other pizza restaurants located in Le Mars. However, she credits Pizza
Ranch’s involvement with community events as a reason why people prefer Pizza Ranch.

Among the seven Pizza Ranch restaurants that are owned by Sickles and Cleveringa, they say Le Mars has the most active delivery services.

Amanda Ruden says they are constantly introducing new menu items, in order to remain competitive. One example is beginning this week, Pizza Ranch is now making breakfast pizzas. As part of the celebration of their 25th anniversary, Pizza Ranch is offering discounts on their buffet meals for the next couple of weeks.




Governor Reynolds Says COVID-19 Numbers Are Dropping, But More Needs To Be Done

(Des Moines) — Governor Kim Reynolds says some steady signs of improvement have been detected with the number of positive COVID-19 cases across the state within the last week. However, Reynolds says more is needed to be done
to mitigate the wide spread outbreak of the virus. Reynolds offered a week-by-week status report for the month of November.

Reynolds says during the week of Thanksgiving, the state saw its first indication of the positive cases were beginning to drop.

Reynolds held a news conference this morning addressing the COVID-19 issue.
She says the number of patients admitted to hospitals have also begin to fall.

The Iowa governor says although the latest numbers are encouraging, we are a long ways off before we can begin to feel comfortable about the outbreak of COVID virus through out the state of Iowa.




Mental Health Discussed During Governor’s News Conference

(Des Moines) — During the governor’s news conference, mental health was a topic of discussion. Karen Hieck, a mental health specialist with the Iowa Department of Human Services appeared with the governor to remind Iowans there is help available if they are feeling anxious, stressed, or depressed. She discussed the program, COVID Recovery Iowa, which allows counselors to be funded through a grant from the CARES Act. Those counselors use a virtual online program to visit with clients suffering from some mental health issues.

Hieck says they have also focused their attention on those residents living in a long-term nursing care facilities.

Hieck says it is not just the pandemic that has bothered people, but other stressful situations are also being heard.

The service is free to the clients.




Floyd Valley Senior Life Solutions Programs Addresses Holiday Anxiety

(Le Mars) — The winter season is upon us and the colder weather may bring individuals further into isolation.  Many Americans have been hunkering down amid the COVID-19 pandemic since early March and this prolonged isolation may take its toll on individuals, especially the elderly population.  According to the American Psychological Association, more than 12 million Americans over the age of 65 live alone.  Beyond the feelings of stress and anxiety that may accompany wintertime and the upcoming holidays, families are facing the death of loved ones, grave illnesses, prolonged isolation, and loss of income due to the pandemic.  These stressors can make the holidays blues feel even bluer this year, and Floyd Valley Senior Life Solutions program is here to help older adults in the community.

Lori Johnson, RN and Program Director for Senior Life Solutions says, “This time of year can be a reminder of lost loved ones, lack of access to family traditions, or other changes that may bring about stress and anxiety.  These feelings may be exacerbated by the stressors of the pandemic.  Many seniors in our community who are practicing social distancing due to the COVID-19 virus may not see their family during the holidays this year.  As a community, we must step up and identify individuals in need of support.”

Senior Life Solutions is an intensive outpatient group therapy program designed to meet the unique needs of older adults typically ages 65 and older struggling with depression and anxiety often related to aging.  They focus on helping seniors in the community navigate difficult life transitions and regain their quality of life not just during the holiday season, but year round.




Reynolds Calls on Congress to Provide More COVID Relief

(Des Moines, IA) — Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is joining other governors in calling on Congress to approve more pandemic relief. Reynolds told reporters Tuesday “It’s time for Congress to come together and get a relief package passed and get some relief to our small businesses and Iowa families who are suffering.” Some states are providing direct aid on their
own, but Reynolds says there’s not enough state funding to make everybody whole. The governor indicated there’s still a portion of the one-point-two-billion dollars of federal CARES Act money sent to the state this spring that has not yet been spent. The funding must be spent before the end of the year and Reynolds said she and her staff are meeting to determine how it will be used.




1906 New COVID Cases in Iowa, 24 Additional Deaths

(Des Moines, IA) — COVID-19 complications are blamed for 24 more deaths in Iowa. A total of two-thousand-427 Iowans have died since the pandemic began.
The Iowa Department of Public Health is reporting one-thousand-906 new positive tests Tuesday, increasing the state’s total to 230-thousand-902 cases. Nearly 12-hundred people are hospitalized with coronavirus in Iowa. Two-hundred-35 of those patients are in intensive care and 144 are on ventilators. Eighty-four counties have a 14-day average positivity rate of at least 15 percent.




Standoff Ends After Sioux City Man Fired Arrows at Police Officers

(Sioux City, IA) — A standoff involving a man shooting arrows at Sioux City police is over. Officers arrived around 8 a-m Tuesday and encountered a 46-year-old man armed with a compound bow launching arrows at them. Negotiators were unable to end the standoff peacefully and authorities used C-S gas to get him to surrender. The suspect reportedly has mental
health issues and told investigators he was trying to provoke a violent confrontation in an attempt to end his life. The man suffered minor self-inflicted lacerations and was treated at a Sioux City hospital.




Iowa DNR Reports 60% Of Tests Lakes, Streams, Rivers Are Impaired

(Des Moines, IA) — A list released by the Department of Natural Resources finds 750 lakes, streams, or rivers tested in Iowa are officially impaired.
That means they don’t meet water quality standards for at least one intended use. More than 60-percent of the bodies of water tested were deficient. A spokesperson for the Iowa Environmental Council says the analysis shows that the state’s current approach to water quality isn’t working. Alicia Vasto
says regulation is needed. D-N-R scientists found that just 16 tested segments of bodies of water met the standards.




Home Invader Sentenced To 60 Years In Prison

(Nevada, IA) — An 18-year-old man who admits he was involved in a violent home invasion two years ago has been sentenced to 60 years in prison. Luis Cruz entered his guilty plea last year. He and two others were charged with breaking into an 82-year-old woman’s home in Kelley, tying her up, assaulting
her, and stealing items from her home. The victim spent several days in the hospital recovering from serious injuries, including brain bleeding.
Prosecutors say the three men also burglarized another home. They say both victims are related to one of the three – Cruz, 20-year-old Manuel Banderas or 18-year-old Jacob Jimenez.




New Plant Means Jobs For NW Iowa

(Odebolt, IA) — A Texas company plans to spend 15-million dollars constructing a plant in northwest Iowa. Corn Board Manufacturing says the 50-thousand square-foot facility will mean an unspecified number of jobs for the area around Odebolt in Sac County. The “environmentally-friendly” company says it plans to break ground sometime next year. The company makes
a wood alternative from corn stover, the debris left in the field after a corn crop is harvested. It already used CornBoard to make ski, snow and skateboard equipment, as well as indoor and outdoor furniture. The company says it is looking for 30-to-50 farmers to provide about 50-thousand bales of corn stover each year.




Iowa Man Sentenced To 30 Years For Helping Bury 2 Bodies

(Waterloo, IA) — An Iowa man has been sentenced to 30 years for helping bury the bodies of a man and woman in Evansdale. Forty-three-year-old Allan Thomas Tucker pleaded guilty to two counts of abuse of a corpse and theft Monday. Investigators accused the Waterloo man of helping his son bury the
bodies of 28-year-old Elissa Landry and her stepfather, 45-year-old David Batten, of Arizona. Their bodies were buried inside Landry’s car. They had been reported missing in Arizona in June 2019.