Home News Friday News, June 11th

Friday News, June 11th


Governor Reynolds Signs Bill Into Law Declaring EMS Services As An “Essential Service”

(Remsen) –– Governor Reynolds has signed a bill that establishes ambulance services as an “essential service” meaning that like fire departments and police departments, community ambulances can collect property tax dollars for equipment, personnel, and training. Kevin Rollins is the president of the
Plymouth County EMT Association. Rollins had been advocating ambulance services be listed as “essential service” for many years. He tells what the new law will mean for small town ambulance services.

Rollins says across the state, small town ambulance services have found it difficult to find enough volunteers to cover all needed shifts. He says this new law will certainly help as a portion of the money may need to go to hiring ambulance staff people.

Rollins says in the near future, Plymouth County Ambulance Association members will gather to further discuss the options available, and to devise a plan to present to the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors on when and how much tax
will need to be collected from property owners.

The Remsen Ambulance Director believes that in the future small towns may be forced to start paying for ambulance staff members.




Chamber of Commerce To Hold “Cash Mob” Today

(Le Mars) — You may have heard of a “Flash Mob” when a group of people gather at a designated location and then offer a performance such as a choreographed dance or music selection. The Le Mars Chamber of Commerce is hosting what is
known as a “Cash Mob”. Mary Reynolds with the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce and Main Street organization says “cash mobs” were popular a few years ago, and the chamber wants to bring back the fun. Reynolds says the chamber of commerce will hold a “cash mob” during the lunch hour on Friday, June 11th.

A few years ago, the former Rust’s Western Wear was the first business that was drawn from a list of downtown businesses. Reynolds says at that time, several people went to the store and made purchases.

Reynolds says the program helps stimulate the local economy.

The chamber official says a member of the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce will be selected, but that business will not have any previous notification they have been selected as the fortunate business for the “cash mob.”
Reynolds says there isn’t any registration, just show up at the chamber office on Friday afternoon, June 11th, during the lunch hour with money in hand.




Le Mars Police Wrapping Up Fund Raising Campaign For K9 Unit

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Police Department is wrapping up its fund raising campaign for its K-9 unit. Police Chief Kevin Vande Vegte says although the campaign is coming to an end, the police department would still welcome donations directed to the K-9 program.

Vande Vegte says the community was very supportive, and contributions exceeded the goal.

Officer Rob Rohlmiller is the handler of the Le Mars Police Department’s K-9 unit consisting of “Ace” a cross between a German Shepard and a Belgium Malinois. Rohlmiller says he is appreciative of the community’s response.

Recently, representatives of Northwest Bank of Le Mars contributed $500 to the Le Mars Police K-9 Unit.  From left are: Joyce Barents, Rebecca McGinnis, Officer Bob Rohlmiller and Kevin Eekhoff.

Chief Vande Vegte says “Ace” has performed well and keeps improving with training.

Officer Rohlmiller tells of the success “Ace” has had at regional police dog competitions.

Rohlmiller talks about the many different capabilities of “Ace” and the areas which he has been trained.

The police K-9 is also capable of tracking and the apprehension of suspects.

Rohlmiller says “Ace” is also being trained for search and tracking of either a lost child, or an elderly individual suffering from dementia, and has wandered away.




90% Of Iowa Experiencing Some Type Of Drought

(Des Moines, IA) — The new U-S Drought Monitor map shows 90 percent of Iowa is experiencing some type of dryness or drought. The Iowa D-N-R’s Tim Hall says only one section of the state that has no water worries is in southeastern Iowa. Hall says the area of concern in northwest Iowa has grown a
little bit. Hall says the weather data for June, July and August show there is a chance to turn things around if we get the average rainfall from here on out.




Reynolds Calls For Investigation of Unaccompanied Migrant Children Flight in Iowa

(Des Moines, IA) — Iowa’s Republican governor is asking for a congressional investigation after unaccompanied migrant children were flown into Iowa without her office being notified. Governor Kim Reynolds and Tennessee’s governor are asking the Senate Judiciary Committee to hold a public hearing about the movement of migrant children into states. The governor’s office
says a plane carrying unaccompanied minor children landed overnight at the Des Moines Airport in late April, but Reynolds was not notified and it was 20 days before federal officials confirmed 19 children from Long Beach, California were flown to Des Moines and then transported on buses to unite with relatives
or local sponsors. A similar scenario unfolded in Knoxville, Tennessee last month. Reynolds and Tennessee’s governor say their experience “sows seeds of mistrust” and “intentionally subverts the will of the people for a secure border.”




Iowa GOP House Members Criticize Proposed Repeal of Trump Water Quality Rules

(Washington, DC) — The three Iowa Republicans serving in the U-S House are criticizing the E-P-A’s move to repeal Trump-era water quality rules and write new ones. Congresswoman Ashley Hinson of Marion said the rules that became final during the last year of Trump’s presidency protect farmers from government overreach. President Biden’s E-P-A administrator said the agency
intends to write new rules that protect water quality, but don’t overly burden small farmers. Hinson, Congresswoman Mariannette Miller-Meeks and Representative Randy Feenstra are co-sponsoring a resolution that would prevent the E-P-A from adopting Obama-era water quality rules. Critics of the
Trump water quality rule say it removed a quarter of U-S waterways and wetlands from federal oversight and has endangered public drinking water supplies.




Baby Boy Turned Over To State Under Safe Haven Law

(Des Moines, IA) — The Iowa Department of Human Services says a baby boy has been turned over to the state under the Safe Haven law. The D-H-S reports the baby was born April 23 — and is the 48th child turned over under the law.
A child who is 30 days old or younger can be turned over at a hospital or health care facility without fear of prosecution for abandonment. The Safe Haven law was approved in the wake of a high-profile case in 2001 involving a teen mother in eastern Iowa who killed her newborn after delivering it at home. Safe Haven babies are placed with foster or adoptive families.




Woman Bonds Out After Threatening To Blow Up Wapello County Attorney’s Office

(Ottumwa, IA) — A 30-year-old Ottumwa woman has been released on bond after threatening to blow up the Wapello County Attorney’s Office. Siearre Smith is accused of making the threat May 25th. That’s the date she reportedly entered
the lobby of the office and started yelling at the people working there. She has been charged with a felony charge – threat of incendiary or explosive device. Witnesses say Smith shouted, “This place needs blown up and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.”




No Charges For School Van Driver Who Left 3-Year-Old Child Behind

(Pella, IA) — Pella police have completed an investigation and decided to file no charges against the school van driver who left a three-year-old child behind. The incident happened in April. Alivea Cole is non-verbal and has a feeding tube. She wasn’t hurt, but she was inside the van by herself for more than two hours. Police determined no evidence of criminal intent existed,
calling what happened an accident. The Pella School District says the driver is no longer employed there.