Naig Talks About Iowa Agriculture At Sioux Center Event
(Sioux Center) — Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig spoke at Sioux Center Thursday before a luncheon crowd to talk about Iowa agriculture. The event was in recognition of National Agriculture Week and was hosted by the Sioux Center Chamber of Commerce. Naig noted that it was appropriate for him
to speak in Sioux County during National Agriculture Week since Sioux County ranks first in the state with many farm products.
The Iowa Agriculture Secretary also spoke about the importance agriculture has on the state’s economy.
Naig says he is optimistic about the outlook for Iowa’s agricultural economy, but that is not to say farmers won’t encounter some challenges this year.
Naig concluded his comments saying that people should not take agriculture for granted.
Drought Is Lessening In Strength Across Iowa
(Des Moines, IA) — The drought situation is improving in Iowa. The latest U-S Drought Monitor shows about 25-percent of the state either abnormally dry or in drought. Conditions have been steadily improving thanks to recent rains. The driest conditions continue to be in northwest Iowa. Several northwest Iowa counties are in either extreme or severe drought. It’s
abnormally dry in northern and west-central Iowa. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented on the latest drought report during his address in Sioux Center on Thursday.
Jeff Mulder Awarded The “Firefighter Of The Year” Honor
(Le Mars) — Last Saturday evening, during the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department’s annual banquet and awards program, Jeff Mulder of Le Mars was named the “Firefighter of the Year.” Fire Chief Dave Schipper presented a plaque to Mulder in honor of the recognition. Mulder is one of the senior members on the firefighter team. He has been a Le Mars firefighter for the
past ten years, but Mulder says his total time as a firefighter goes back to when he resided in Minnesota. All total, Mulder has been a firefighter and EMT for more than 36 years, and he shares high compliments for the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department.
Mulder is certified in many categories including Firefighter 1, Hazardous Materials Operations, Confined Space Rescue Operations, and as mentioned, he is also certified as an Emergency Medical Technician. The Firefighter of the
Year says the training sessions held nearly every Wednesday evening should be viewed as being beneficial to the community. Mulder is employed with Central Valley Ag. He says there is some important cross-over training that helps him with his full-time job.
Mulder says he was surprised, but appreciative of the honor and is humbled to be named as the Firefighter of the Year. Chief Dave Schipper says Jeff Mulder is a firefighter who does whatever he is requested to do, and is a very giving individual. Schipper says whenever somebody is needing some assistance, Jeff Mulder is the first to offer a contribution or donation to
help the cause.
Mulder says he is most appreciative of the support the Le Mars community shares with the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department, saying the town’s generosity makes Le Mars a better community.
Mulder says he is a firefighter for one main reason: “to give back to the community.”
Iowa Unemployment Rate Unchanged in February at 3.6 %
(Des Moines, IA) — Iowa’s unemployment rate remained unchanged in February at three-point-six percent. The number of working Iowans increased by 32-hundred last month – while the number of unemployed is up 300 from January.
The labor force participation rate held steady at 65-point-six percent in February. Iowa Workforce Development director Beth Townsend said she anticipates a larger decrease in the unemployment rate this spring with improvement in the weather and wider distribution of the COVID vaccine.
Iowa’s jobless rate is nearly three points lower than the national rate of six-point-two percent in February.
Iowa House Bill Could Set Up Private Flood Insurance Market
(Des Moines, IA) — Some Iowa insurance companies might start selling private flood insurance policies to cover homes if a bill that’s won unanimous House approval becomes law. Representative Gary Mohr of Bettendorf says these private policies could become a viable alternative to federal flood insurance. Mohr said, “with Iowa being a leader in the insurance
industry, we see this as a potentially big, new, national private sector marketplace in the residential flood insurance market.” An eligible insurance company must have a state certificate to do business in Iowa and a company would be required to file rates for its flood insurance policies with Iowa’s insurance commissioner. The bill, as written, would only allow
private flood insurance policies to cover a primary residence. FEMA is scheduled to announce new rates for the National Flood Insurance Program on April 1st.
California Company Buying 24 Pizza Hut Locations in Iowa
(San Francisco, CA) — A San Francisco company is purchasing 24 Pizza Hut restaurants in Iowa. The Flynn Restaurant Group says the Iowa restaurants are part of the 937 Pizza Hut and 194 Wendy’s locations throughout the United States it is buying from the Kansas City-based NPC International. The Iowa locations are in Cedar Falls, Waterloo, Waverly, Waukee, Dubuque, Charles
City, Coralville, Iowa City, North Liberty, Cedar Rapids, Marion,
Marshalltown, Altoona, Ankeny, Des Moines, Grimes, West Des Moines, Bettendorf, Davenport, Ames, Toledo, Norwalk, Fort Dodge, and Decorah. The company owns several other restaurants and says it is the largest franchise operator in America.
Charles City Man Busted With 3 Ounces of Meth During Traffic Stop
(Charles City, IA) — A Charles City man is facing felony drug charges after a traffic stop in Floyd County. Deputies say 51-year-old Christopher Tusler was pulled over on Highway 218 and a search of his vehicle led to around three ounces of methamphetamine. Tusler is also accused of driving while barred and with a revoked license. He was booked on 33-thousand