Home News Tuesday Afternoon News, April 20th

Tuesday Afternoon News, April 20th


High School Students Sign Commitment To Teach Agriculture

(Le Mars) — Just as many high school athletes show their commitment to play sports for a college or university by holding a signing of intent ceremony, so is also the case with high school
students wanting to pursue a higher level education with the thought of teaching agriculture. The Iowa Department of Education for the 2020-2021 school year has identified Agriculture Education as a teacher shortage area.
The Iowa Association of Agriculture Educators, as part of a State Teach Ag Results or STAR grant program, are focusing efforts to combat the shortage.
High school seniors and college transfer students who are committing to pursue a degree in Agricultural Education will be participating in the fifth letter of intent signing day for future agriculture teachers at the 93rd Iowa FFA Leadership Conference today, Tuesday, April 20th at the Iowa Events Center.
The purpose of the event is to recognize those students who are pursuing an Agricultural Education degree at the institution of their choice and committing to teach upon completion of their degree. Two Plymouth County FFA students will participate in today’s signing intent program. They include Sophia Knuth of Akron-Westfield Community School, and Mia Haage of the Le Mars Community School District. Both students have committed to attend Iowa State University. Dr. Tom Paulsan the director of Morningside College Agriculture program says students with an agriculture degree are in high demand.




Governor Reynolds Pushes EPA To Adopt Rules For E-15

DES MOINES – Today Gov. Kim Reynolds implored the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to follow through on expanding consumer access to E15. These comments were submitted during the EPA’s public comment period.

“The State of Iowa leads the nation in the production of ethanol, biodiesel, and the corn and soybean feedstock that is used to make it,” Gov. Reynolds stated in her public comments. “The renewable fuels industry accounts for more than $5.3 billion – or about 3 percent – of Iowa’s GDP, and supports more than 48,000 Iowa jobs. Iowa is a national leader in renewable energy, and I am pleased to offer comments on the proposed rule for E15 fuel dispenser labeling and compatibility with underground storage tanks.”

In a letter directed to EPA Administrator Michael Regan, Gov. Reynolds specifically highlighted changes needed to E15 pump labels, underground fuel infrastructure, and endorsed the agency’s proposal to require future infrastructure to be E100 compatible.

“Quickly expanding consumer access to E15 is vital to Iowa’s economy, consumer’s pocketbooks, and our nation’s clean air. I appreciate the steps the Agency has proposed in this draft rule, and believe there is even more the Agency could do to increase access to and the use of E15,” Gov. Reynolds continued.

Gov. Reynolds is currently pushing legislation to create a robust biofuel standard that expands consumer access to higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel. She will continue to advocate for Iowa’s renewable fuel industry during this legislative session while simultaneously working to hold the EPA’s feet to the fire in support of E15.




Suspect in Deadly Pork Plant Stabbing Found Incompetent For Trial

(Clarion, IA) — The man accused of fatally stabbing a co-worker at the Prestage Foods plant in Eagle Grove won’t be going on trial anytime soon. A Wright County judge has found 26-year-old Lukouxs Brown of Fort Dodge not competent to stand trial. Brown suffers from mental disorder which would
prevent him from understanding the first-degree murder charge he’s facing.
The Iowa D-C-I said Brown stabbed 50-year-old Wayne Smith to death in a locker room of the pork processing plant in February. Brown is being sent to the Iowa Medical and Classification Center for treatment.




Small Amount of Corn Planted in Iowa

(Des Moines, IA) — Spring planting is starting up in Iowa. The U-S-D-A’s weekly crop report says most of last week was favorable for fieldwork and once soil temperatures warmed up enough that work turned from the preparation of the soil to planting in some areas. The report says four percent of the
projected corn crop is in the ground. There were scattered reports of soybeans planted. The most progress was made with oats — as two-thirds of that crop has been planted.




Former Vice President and Iowa Caucus Winner Mondale Dies in Minnesota

(Minneapolis, MN) — Politicians from both sides of the aisle are mourning the loss of former Vice President Walter Mondale. His family said Mondale died at his Minnesota home Monday at age 93. U-S Senator Chuck Grassley tweeted that he and Barbara are praying for Mondale’s family and friends.
Grassley wrote that “Mondale spoke the values of Minnesota & loved his state like I do Iowa.” Mondale won the Iowa Caucuses in 1984 before losing the presidential election to President Ronald Reagan. He told an Iowa P-B-S reporter in 2015 that the Iowa Caucus system guarantees the candidates listen
to Iowa voters.




Northern Iowa Man Pleads Guilty to Dealing Meth From Mexico

(Sioux City, IA) – – A northern Iowa man will spend at least ten years in federal prison after pleading guilty to dealing methamphetamine sent from Mexico. The U-S Attorney’s Office says 29-year-old Rafael Perez-Mercado from Belmond admitted that he and others distributed more than ten pounds of meth
in the Wright County area last fall. Authorities intercepted a package from Mexico and delivered it to Perez-Mercado’s residence October 20th, but he ran out the back door. Officers say they seized nine one-pound packages of meth from a bag dropped by Perez-Mercado when he fled. He faces a mandatory
minimum of ten years in prison at sentencing.