Home News Tuesday Afternoon News, March 30th

Tuesday Afternoon News, March 30th


Lt. Governor Adam Gregg Tours Northwest Iowa And Promotes High Speed Broadband PlanĀ 

(Le Mars) — Iowa Lt. Governor Adam Gregg made a swing through northwest Iowa on Tuesday, stopping at KLEM radio offices as part of his tour. The Lt. Governor began his northwest Iowa journey by donating blood at Sioux City saying he wants to call attention to the importance of donating blood.

Gregg was also scheduled to make visits to Lyon, Osceola and O’Brien Counties, to observe examples of Iowa innovation and entrepreneurship.

Later this evening, the Lt. Governor will participate in an event with some level of familiarity.

Gregg is touting Governor Reynolds message of the importance of installing high speed broadband to all regions of the state. On Monday, the Iowa House took its first steps to approving a plan to include high speed broadband internet throughout the state. Gregg says the pandemic showed why connectivity is important to the state of Iowa.

Governor Reynolds had requested the state legislature to pass a package that would include funding $450 million dollars over the course of the next three years to install high speed broadband throughout the state. It appears the state legislature may settle on an investment of $100 million dollars for this year. Gregg calls it a bold plan.

Gregg says he and other members of the Governor’s staff have been negotiating with state legislators on a broadband plan that can be adequately funded.

The Lt. Governor says having broadband connectivity to all areas of the state should help small businesses grow, retain businesses within our state, and even attract graduates to stay in Iowa.




Market Analyst Predicts Higher Livestock Prices

(Sioux Center) — Despite seeing higher grain prices, the outlook for livestock prices looks good for producers. That’s according to commodity market analyst Joe Kerns of Partners for Production Agriculture. Kerns was the featured key-note speaker during last week’s Appreciation for Agriculture held at Sioux Center. Kerns says livestock producers will be forced to pay
higher grain and feed costs, but he believes both cattle and hog producers will still be able to obtain profits.

Kerns is predicting livestock producers may witness good prices, not for just a few weeks, or even a few months, but quite possibly it may continue for a few years.

A lot of focus has been placed on China’s desire to increase its protein diet by purchasing more soybeans, poultry, pork, and even beef for its ever expanding population. But what about India? India also has a large population base that has been growing. Could India present a potential growing export market for U-S farmers?

Kerns says he remains optimistic about the future for both grain and livestock prices improving, however, he admits the one factor that remains as an unknown are future government policies that could disrupt marketing and the supply and demand factors.




Former Iowa Secretary of State Baxter of Burlington Dies

(Burlington, IA ) — Former Iowa Secretary of State Elaine Baxter of Burlington has died at the age of 88. Baxter became the first woman ever elected to the Burlington City Council in 1973. In 1982, she was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives where she served three terms. In 1986,
Baxter won a statewide race to serve as Iowa Secretary of State and served two terms. She ran unsuccessfully for the U-S House in 1992 against Republican Congressman Jim Ross Lightfoot. Baxter served on a variety of state boards and commissions after leaving public office, including the Terrace Hill Society and the Iowa Lottery Board. She was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2006.




Record Number of Iowa High School Students Taking Community College Classes

(Des Moines, IA) — The number of students who take a community college class while still in high school in Iowa continues to go up. Department of Education consultant Jen Rathje said joint enrollment of high school students reached an all-time record high of 51-thousand-800 during academic year 2019-2020. That is a two-point-four percent increase from the
previous year. Rathje says ten of the 15 community colleges experienced an increase in enrollment in the course last year. Students taking both types of courses make up nearly 41 percent of the community college enrollment. Nearly 45 percent of high school students who take community college classes are
seniors while 34 percent are juniors.




Creston Police Officer Accused of Domestic Assault

(Creston, IA) — A police officer in southwest Iowa is on paid leave during a domestic assault investigation. Officers responding to a call Sunday morning found a woman with visible injuries who claimed that Creston police officer
Eric Shawler assaulted her. Forty-eight-year-old Shawler was arrested and later charged with one count of domestic assault causing injury. The Iowa D-C-I says Shawler was booked in the Adams County jail and has since posted bond. Investigators aren’t release any further information about the case.




Multiple Grass Fires Reported Near Marshalltown

(Marshalltown, IA) — Marshall County residents awoke to the smell of smoke from multiple grass fires this morning (Tuesday). The fires in northwest Marshall County were sparked Monday night just after a red flag warning expired. Fire crews from several communities spent more than four hours
battling the fires. The grass fires extended over roughly 400 acres between Marshalltown city limits to the northwest towards Albion. No homes or buildings were burned and no one was injured. There is still an elevated risk of grass fire today (Tuesday).