Floyd Valley Healthcare To Begin Another New COVID-19 Testing
(Le Mars) — Beginning today, Wednesday, December 9th, Floyd Valley Healthcare will be offering the Binax Now COVID Antigen Testing for Plymouth County.
Testing will occur weekdays from 1:00 – 1:30 p.m. and 2:00 – 2:30 p.m. at the North Entrance of Floyd Valley Healthcare. Appointments can be made by calling (712) 546-3618 (no walk-ins will be permitted). Same-day results will be available. Brenda Kolbeck serves as the laboratory manager for Floyd Valley Healthcare and explains the new type of testing procedure.
Kolbeck talks about why the tests will only be used on a specific targeted population base.
Kolbeck says in addition to the new testing procedure, Floyd Valley Healthcare is still testing the general population with the “TestIowa” kits.
She talks about the differences in the testing procedures.
The Floyd Valley Healthcare lab manager says with the new Binax Now Antigen testing, health officials can determine the outcome at the Le Mars hospital, where as the TestIowa results need to be sent to the state’s hygienic lab for analysis.
Farmers Could See Increased Prices For Corn And Soybeans
(Ames) — Corn and soybean farmers could see additional price increases for the coming weeks. Farmers have already enjoyed seeing a boost in commodity prices since harvest finished, and Chad Hart, an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Agriculture Economist that focuses on grain marketing,
says indications show for those trends to continue to go higher.
Hart says farmers may want to consider locking in a price on the futures exchange and begin selling a portion of the yet to be planted 2021 crop.
Between corn and soybeans, Hart believes soybeans may present the most upside potential for farmers pocketbooks.
The Iowa State University ag economist says it’s not just soybeans that the Chinese are purchasing. He says they have an interest in acquiring many other types of commodities.
Hart says given the current predictions, U-S farmers may find themselves with low inventory supplies with corn and soybeans later in the year. Hart will appear in a state-wide “Pro-Ag” Zoom seminar on Friday giving his crop price projections outlook.
Grassley Comments On President-elect Joe Biden Agriculture Policy
(Washington) — During Senator Chuck Grassley’s weekly news conference held Monday, the Iowa Republican Senator informed reporters he has a few concerns with in-coming president Biden with regards to agriculture. Grassley says Biden has indicated he may not focus much attention on trade, but rather to help build the economy. Grassley says in order to establish a strong national economy, it requires trade.
Grassley says grain prices have increased in recent weeks, and he says in order for a continuation of trends for higher corn, wheat, and soybean prices, as well as other farm commodities, trade would be essential. Grassley told reporters he fears Biden may want to re-establish the “Waters of the US Act”.
Last week, we had reported Senator Grassley preferred to see Tom Vilsack make a return as the U-S Secretary of Agriculture. This week, Grassley says Vilsack’s name is being mentioned even more as a possible cabinet member to again lead the Agriculture Department.
Grassley offers two reasons why he prefers Vilsack, the former Iowa Governor, to be again the next Agriculture Secretary.
The Iowa Republican says President-elect Biden is also considering some minority candidates that may have a greater interest in increasing supplemental nutritional assistance programs, food-stamps, rather than focusing attention on traditional farm-related programs.
Iowa Department Of Transportation Reports “Good Trends” In Rail, Other Areas
(Des Moines, IA) — A spokesman for the Iowa Department of Transportation is seeing some good trends in rail and other transportation areas for the state’s economy. The D-O-T’s Stuart Anderson gave a report on the issue to the Transportation Commission. He pointed out there are “real bright spots,” particularly when it comes to grain shipments. The grain movements by rail in November were the highest since October of 2007. Anderson says there’s also been an increase in intermodal shipments by trains and trucks. He says the continued drop in travel is projected to lead to around a three percent decrease in fuel tax collections.
Grassley Expects Passage of Short-Term Budget Resolution
(Washington, DC) — U-S Senator Chuck Grassley says he’s confident both chambers of Congress will agree on a continuing resolution to prevent a federal government shutdown. The Iowa Republican predicts the larger plan that will pass on December 18th will include the long-awaited relief package for individuals, businesses, and state and local governments impacted by COVID-19. Grassley said, “there’s so much bipartisan agreement on so many parts that are needed, if we can forget some things that don’t have bipartisan support, we’ll take care of a lot of the need that’s out there.” He blames Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for making no concessions on a pandemic relief package, but says Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have moved off what he calls their “all-or-nothing position and seem to be negotiating.”
Iowa Chamber Alliance Suggests Using Reserve Funds For Future Disasters
(Des Moines, IA) — A group that represents 16 of the largest chambers of commerce in Iowa is urging state lawmakers to clarify when the state’s cash reserves may be used. Iowa Chamber Alliance executive director Dustin Miller said when large scale disasters hit, like the derecho, the state’s economic emergency fund might be used to help businesses recover. The state surplus at the end of the last fiscal year in June was at least 300-million dollars, with another 700 million in reserve. Miller said having the state budget in “a stable place” is good for the business climate, but the Chamber Alliance is suggesting when the state’s cash reserves are full, those resources could be deployed to help businesses recover from future disasters.
Iowa DNR Reports 6 Incidents During Shotgun Deer Opener
(Des Moines, IA) — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says there were six incidents during the first shotgun deer hunt over the weekend. One hunter suffered minor injuries and five were related to property damage. D-N-R hunter education administrator Megan Wisecup says following safety protocols can reduce the risk of injury and property damage. She said hunters should keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, properly identifying the target and what is behind it, by not shooting at a running deer, and by making sure of the backstop and not shooting over the horizon and out of sight. The first shotgun season ends Wednesday and the second season runs December 12th through 20th. Around 120-thousand hunters are expected to participate.
Northern Lights May Be Visible In Iowa Wednesday-Thursday-Friday
(Boulder, CO) — The Space Weather Prediction Center in Colorado says the northern lights could be visible in Iowa beginning tonight (Wednesday) and continuing through Friday. A powerful solar flare is causing the celestial show. Scientists say the aurora borealis should be visible across the northern United States, from Washington to Maine, dipping as far south as Iowa. The geomagnetic storm will peak late tonight into early Thursday. The solar flare was recorded Monday. Viewers should get away from city light pollution and weather could impact what you see.
NE Iowa Farmer Awarded Nobel Peace Prize 50 years Ago This Week
(Cresco, IA) — Fifty years ago this week, the groundbreaking work of a northeast Iowa farmer was recognized on the global stage when Norman Borlaug was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Barbara Stinson, president of the World Food Prize Foundation says his research in plant genetics mobilized agricultural innovations in Mexico, India and Pakistan over several decades, saving vast populations from starvation. “He’s actually credited with having saved over a billion lives, more than anyone else in human history,” Stinson says. “They didn’t have an agricultural prize so they awarded him the Peace Prize for his work in agriculture and reducing hunger, which brought much greater peace to the world, particularly in those areas.”