Home News Thursday News, August 26th

Thursday News, August 26th


Plymouth County Bees Featured As Exhibit At Iowa State Fair

(Des Moines) — The Iowa State Fair was again able to attract more than a million-94 thousand visitors.  Many, perhaps toured the Agriculture Building to see the state fair’s iconic butter cow sculpture.  Directly above the butter cow, on the upper level was the exhibit of the Iowa Honey Bee Association.  This year’s live working bee hive came from Plymouth County.  Dean Johnson of Merrill featured his bee hive at the state fair. It was the same display with the same bees that were on display at the Plymouth County Fair.

This was the first time Johnson has featured his live bee hive as an exhibit for the Iowa State Fair.

Johnson estimates that perhaps 50 percent of the bees from the hive may not have followed the hive to Des Moines, but he says the Queen bee is constantly laying eggs as new bees are able to replenish older bees.  Johnson says he was asked by several people as to how they can start a bee hive and honey business.  Roy Kraft is the president of the Iowa Honey Bee Association.  He says a common question at the state fair is how many bees does it take to produce one pound of honey?

Kraft says when bees find pollen and come back to the hive with the nectar, they communicate to the other bees in the hive by performing a bit of a dance.

Kraft explains the process that producers follow in order to separate honey from the honey comb.

Johnson says he will again be featuring his observation live bee hive at another fair.  He plans to display his live hive at the South Dakota State Fair held at Huron, South Dakota.




DeJong Says Crops Can Still Benefit From Rains

(Le Mars) — The weather forecast is calling for a chance of rain throughout most of this remaining week, and according to Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Crops Specialist, Joel DeJong that rain can’t get here fast enough for area crops.

“DeJong, Joel”

The area crops specialist says there is a possibility farmers could see lower test weights and perhaps some lower yields due to the extended dry conditions.

DeJong says some farmers within the area have already began chopping their corn for silage feed.  He says some soybeans have started changing color from green to yellow.




Floyd Valley Healthcare Board Of Trustees To Hold Special Meeting

(Le Mars) — Floyd Valley Healthcare Board of Trustees will hold a special board meeting scheduled for Monday, August 30th at 5:00 p.m. at the administration boardroom.  The special meeting will be a closed session in accordance with the Iowa Code.  The board of trustees will discuss the potential sale of real estate.




Four Iowans Sue Because State Ended Extra Federal Unemployment Payments Early

(Des Moines, IA  —  Four people are suing the governor for ending the extra federal unemployment payments in June when they could have carried on until September. Attorney Jeff Carter represents the four.  He says Iowa’s unemployment law prevents the governor from taking that action.  Carter is seeking class-action for the lawsuit as he believes there could be as many as 50-thousand Iowans who were impacted.  The governor’s spokesperson issued a statement saying they’ve seen a 175 percent increase in people seeking employment since the announcement and it is in accordance with the law.




Mother Of Two Council Bluffs Students Sues Governor Over Face Mask Law

(Council Bluffs, IA)  —  The mother of two young students in Council Bluffs is suing Governor Kim Reynolds over the law she signed that bans schools from requiring masks. Fran Parr has twin sons in first grade and says she wants to get some recognition of the risk that the Delta variant is to the unvaccinated and to children. Parr’s is the first lawsuit filed to challenge the law signed in May.  Governor Reynolds has said it should be parents who decide whether their children wear masks at school.




Iowa Man Sentenced To Federal Prison For Fraudulently Getting CARES Act Funds

(Cedar Rapids, IA)  —  An Iowa man has been sentenced to nine months in federal prison for getting more than 13 thousand dollars in CARES Act unemployment funds fraudulently.  Fifty-five-year-old Brian Lynn Whorton of Marion was sentenced this week after entering a guilty plea last January.  Whorton will have to make restitution and serve a two-year term of supervised release after he gets out.  Federal prosecutors said he withdrew some of the money in cash and used a Bitcoin A-T-M to send funds to co-conspirators.




DNR Monitoring Eddyville Fire; At Same Time HazMat Incident Happens At Plant

(Eddyville, IA)  —  With the Iowa Department of Natural Resources still on the scene for a fire that started four days ago, local officials in Eddyville have had to deal with an acid spill.  Residents were asked to shelter in place Wednesday when the Haz-Mat problem was reported at the Ajinomoto plant.  No injuries were reported from the acid spill.  The fire at Chamness Technology compost site has been smoldering since Sunday.  Firefighters say the same facility experienced a similar problem last May.  School district officials say Thursday classes will be delayed by at least two hours.




Ernst Says Afghan SIV Holders Vetted Before Resettling in US

(Griswold, IA)  —  U- S Senator Joni Ernst is responding to those who question whether there are safety concerns about refugees being flown from Afghanistan to the U-S.  The Iowa Republican is strong supporter of resettling Afghans in Iowa.  Ernst said there is a significant vetting process they have to go through before they’re brought here.  The combat veteran met with Afghan civilians who had special immigrant visas (SIV) earlier this month at Fort Lee in Virginia.  During a forum in Griswold, Ernst said all Afghans who resettle in Iowa would go through the State Department’s Special Immigrant Visa process.  Ernst says those would have to be the ones that worked for our Embassy in Afghanistan or those that worked for a government contractor, served as an interpreter.




Cash Rent for Iowa Farmland Up From 2020

(Ames, IA)  —  A new survey finds Iowa had the highest cash rent average for cropland this year at 233 dollars an acre, three dollars an acre higher than last year.  Farmers across the U-S are paying an average of 141 dollar an acre to rent cropland.  That’s up two dollars from 2020.  Iowa State University Extension ag economist Wendong Zhang says cash rents closely follow farmland values.  Zhang says Iowa has seen about 20 percent growth, evidenced by many of the auction prices as well as the expert opinion survey.  He expects the farmland values and cash rents to remain high because the interest rate is still fairly low.  Of the top five states, Iowa had the highest cash rent average followed by Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska and Minnesota.




Iowa Trucker Charged in Death of Girlfriend’s Child in Indiana

(Shipshewana, IN)  —  A trucker from eastern Iowa is charged with the death of his girlfriend’s four-year-old in the state of Indiana.  Thirty-five-year-old Dylan Diericx (dirks) is facing a felony count of neglect of a dependent resulting in death.  The “News Sun” in Indiana reports Diericx called police in Shipshewana on August 19th to report the child was unresponsive in the cab of his semi.  The child was taken to the hospital and died.  The report says Diericx told police the child was hurt while playing in the cab — but doctors say the child had multiple injuries that were not consistent with what Diericx told them.




Forest City Bus Driver Sentenced to 14 Days For Driving Drunk

(Mason City, IA)  —  The sentence is 14 days in jail for a former Forest City school bus driver who pleaded guilty to driving drunk with students onboard.  Forty-four-year-old Rebecca Spencer was also ordered to serve two years of probation and pay a fine of one-thousand-875 dollars. Spencer was arrested for speeding in a school van in March and a state trooper smelled alcohol in the vehicle.  She had a blood alcohol content of point-two-44 while transporting three kids to school.  Spencer resigned from the Forest City Community School District following her arrest.