Naig Says Food Security Is Still A Concern While Celebrating Ag Week
(Des Moines) — This week is National Agriculture Week, with the chosen theme “Food Brings Everyone To The Table.” Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig says it is important that we honor our farmers and ranchers, and that we take the time to recognize the significance of agriculture.
Secretary Naig says, for many of us, we always took agriculture for granted. That is until this past year when COVID-19 struck, and there were times the food we wanted wasn’t always on the grocery store shelves.
Naig says food security remains a concern for many families who have had to visit their local food pantries and food banks. He says fortunately, many Iowans, including farm and commodity organizations, food companies, and others stepped up to donate much needed food supplies. However, there is still a great demand for food at our food pantries and food banks.
The Iowa Agriculture Secretary says we all need to continue to tell the story of agriculture. He says we also must realize that agriculture touches us all, and we need to know that agriculture also includes the truck driver, the grain processor, the food processing employee, and even the store clerk at our local grocery store or supermarket.
Meteorologist Message During National Severe Weather Awareness Week “Be Prepared!”
(Le Mars) — We continue our series of reports focusing on severe weather conditions during this week recognized as National Severe Weather Awareness Week. Peter Rogers serves as a meteorologist with the National Weather Services in Sioux Falls and he says we need to be able to receive any messages issued by the National Weather Services when threatening and severe weather may be within our area. Many people are alerted to severe weather through text alerts through their cellular phone provider. However, Rogers says we may not want to solely depend upon or cell phones to tell us if we are in the middle of severe weather.
Rogers says outdoor warning sirens are a great use to alert a community of a pending storm or tornado, but Rogers says they are not meant to alert people who are indoors.
The weather services meteorologist tells the difference between a Watch and a Warning, and he offers an explanation as to the criteria when either a Watch or Warning is issued.
Rogers reminds us that strong straight-line winds can be as dangerous as a tornado. He says last year’s derecho wind storm that passed through Iowa on August 10th is an excellent example as it did considerable damage to crops, trees, utility powerlines, grain storage facilities, and buildings, but no tornado was detected. Le Mars is scheduled to test their outdoor warning sirens on Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. then from April through November those outdoor warning sirens will be tested once a month on the first Monday of the month at 1:00 p.m.
News Conference Planned On Deaths At Anamosa Prison
(Anamosa, IA) — State officials plan to hold a news conference this (Wednesday) afternoon (3:00 p-m) in Anamosa to discuss the deaths of a nurse and prison guard. The Department of Corrections reported the two were killed in an attack at the prison hospital by an inmate at about 10:15 Tuesday morning. But they say they can provide only limited information about the incident since it is an ongoing investigation. The inmate was subdued as more staff responded — but efforts to save the injured nurse and correctional officer failed. Governor Reynolds issued a written statement, offering her deepest condolences to their families, friends, and co-workers. She promised the state will exhaust every available resource to deliver justice to those responsible.
House Passes Trespassing Bill
(Des Moines, IA) — New penalties for those found guilty of trespassing to set up electronic surveillance equipment on someone else’s property to secretly capture images or video have passed in the House. Iowa legislators have been trying to enhance trespassing laws for nearly a decade in response to undercover operations in large-scale livestock operations. Republican Representative Jarad Klein of Keota says the bill addresses somebody that has ill intentions and wants access to somewhere where they don’t have a reason to be. Critics say the bill could be used to shield those who are mistreating animals or it could prevent reporting of unsafe working conditions in Iowa meatpacking plants.
Former Record Store Owner Loses Effort To Overturn His Conviction
(Des Moines, IA) — The former owner of Wayback Records in West Des Moines has lost his effort to overturn his 2019 conviction of secretly recording video of underage girls. Fifty-two-year-old Robert Kuhn had maintained the cameras were in a restroom in his store as an anti-theft device. He claimed there was insufficient evidence to support the charges he was trying to gratify his own sexual desires. He’s serving a 30-year sentence. Kuhn was caught when a teenage employee spotted the partially-concealed camera on a shelf. Investigators found a video of her and two girls who had changed clothes in that restroom.
Human Remains Found in Eastern Iowa Near DeWitt
(DeWitt, IA) — Authorities in eastern Iowa are investigating the discovery of human remains near DeWitt. The Clinton County Sheriff’s Office says two fishermen found what they believed were remains Monday night. Officials say it is a missing person’s case and the remains haven’t been identified. It’s expected to take a week or two to confirm the identity. The Iowa D-C-I, F-B-I and Davenport Police Department are part of the investigation. Davenport police have been searching for ten-year-old Breasia Terrell since last summer.
Ernst, Axne Introduce Bipartisan Improving Child Care for Working Families Act
(Washington, DC) — U-S Senator Joni Ernst and Congresswoman Cindy Axne are sponsoring bipartisan legislation to increase access to child care for Iowa’s working families. The bill would more than double the amount of tax-free dollars working parents and employers can set aside in a dependent care assistance plan (DCAP) to pay for child care expenses. The cap was raised to ten-thousand-500 dollars under the latest COVID relief package for 2021 and the Improving Child Care for Working Families Act would permanently increase that cap. Representative Axne says when the cost of child care is higher than the average rent, families need help keeping up with skyrocketing costs. Senator Ernst called the bill a commonsense solution that will benefit both our working moms and dads and small businesses.
$100 Million Expansion Planned For Iowa Beef Plant in Tama
(Tama, IA) — A second production line is being added at the beef packing plant in Tama and the company says the 100-million-dollar project should lead to hundreds of additional jobs. Iowa Cattlemen’s Association C-E-O Matt Deppe said it will be a big boost to the market for live cattle in Iowa. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2022. I-S-U estimates livestock producers sell about 68-hundred head of cattle each weekday, but the state’s three beef plants are only able to slaughter about a quarter of those animals. The Iowa Premium Beef plant currently processes about 11-hundred head of Angus cattle per day.