Home News Wednesday News, December 29th

Wednesday News, December 29th

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Le Mars Arts Center To Host New Year’s Eve Star Studded Evening

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Arts Council is encouraging people to bring in the new year by celebrating with them at the Le Mars Arts Center.  It is being slated as “New Year’s Eve Star Studded Evening.”  Nancy Toma serves as the president of the Le Mars Arts Council and says the evening will consist of a silent auction, live music, , and Champaign. But the focus of the evening will be on the collection of celebrity autographs and photos that was the obtained from a gentleman that attended Westmar College.

Toma explains the history of the collection of the celebrity autographs, and how it was the city, the museum, and now the Le Mars Arts Center was able to acquire the unique exhibit.

The Le Mars Art Center official further explains how the collection came into the hands of the Plymouth County Historical Museum.

The collection of autographs is primarily with celebrities, musicians, sports figures, entertainers, government officials, many from the era of the 1960’s and 70’s. Toma talks about some of the names that may, or may not be familiar to us.

Toma says the event is a fund raiser for the Le Mars Arts Center with tickets now on sale.

The Star Studded Evening will begin at 6:00 p.m. and continue until 10:00 p.m.  The exhibit will be on display at the Le Mars Arts Center through the month of January.

 

 

 

Senator Grassley Tells Iowans To “Listen To Their Own Doctor”

(Washington, DC)  —  Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says if you are confused by all the talk about COVID – there’s one thing to do.  Listen to your own doctor, particularly about vaccinations.  Grassley says don’t listen to politicians.  The Republican from New Hartford says Democrats have politicized the issue, citing President Joe Biden’s recent statement that there is no federal solution to the pandemic.  Grassley says he agrees that the solution should be left to the states.  He says Biden’s statement wasn’t criticized even though it was the opposite of what his party has been pushing.

 

 

 

Prosecutor Releases Additional Details In Murder Of Fairfield HS Spanish Teacher

(Fairfield, IA)  —  The Jefferson County prosecutor is releasing additional details in the murder of a Spanish teacher at Fairfield High School.  Nohema Graber was killed in early November.  Papers filed by that prosecutor last week allege students Jeremy Goodale and Willard Miller, both 16, watched their teacher, ambushed as she took her daily walk, dragged her into a wooded area, then returned later to do a better job of hiding her body.  The defense attorney has asked that the case be tried in juvenile court – but that would mean Goodale would be free in less than two years.

 

 

 

Task Force:  Address Diversity For Iowa Teachers By Making Changes

(Des Moines, IA)  —  A legislative task force says Iowa could address its lack of diversity among teachers by making some changes.  Recommendations released this week include looking at ways teachers could complete certification without passing the licensing exam – and starting an apprenticeship program that would let high school juniors become classroom aides and earn academic credits while working with licensed teachers.  About 25 percent of students in Iowa schools are members of racial and ethnic minorities, but only about three percent of teachers fit in those groups.

 

 

 

Iowa House GOP Looks to Develop Trans Athlete Policy

(Des Moines, IA)  —  Seven states have passed laws in 2021 that restrict transgender athletes from participating in girls sports activities in schools.  House Speaker Pat Grassley says “a lot of” Republicans have an interest in passing similar legislation here, but he says the key is ensuring what’s passed could be enforced by the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union and the Iowa High School Athletic Association.  Grassley said, “we shouldn’t just pass something so we can go home and say: ‘We passed something.’ If we’re going to pass policy, it has to be a policy that they can implement.”  Democratic House Minority Leader Jennifer Konfrst from Windsor Heights says these types of conversations are not helpful to resolving the state’s workforce shortage.   Konfrst said, “we need to be doing things to make Iowa more inclusive, not less.”

 

 

 

Judge Dismisses Request to Throw Out Lawsuit From Former IDPH Spokesperson

(Des Moines, IA)  —  A district court judge is dismissing the state’s request to throw out a wrongful termination lawsuit filed by the former spokesperson for the Iowa Department of Public Health.  Polly Carver-Kimm sued Governor Kim Reynolds and administrators in the health department last year, alleging she was forced to leave her job for providing open records information to the media.  The lawsuit says requests that Carver-Kimm had previously replied to were required to go through the governor’s office once the pandemic started.  As first reported by the Des Moines Register, the judge ruled Carver-Kimm in her job had “the specific obligation to fulfill open record requests,” and dismissed the claim by the Assistant Attorney General defending Reynolds that state open records law is not “a well-recognized public policy.”

 

 

 

3 Men Charged With Poaching Deer and Turkey in Des Moines County

(Burlington, IA)  —  Three men are facing charges for alleged hunting violations and illegal activity this fall in Des Moines County.  Conservation officer Paul Kay began investigating the unlawful taking of a white-tailed deer in October and that led officers to discover additional deer and turkey that were also poached.  The suspect is also accused of hunting over bait and being a felon in possession of a firearm.  Suspicious activity in northern Des Moines led the D-N-R to a machine shed with three mature deer and several antlerless deer that were illegally harvested.  Two people were charged with hunting over bait, using firearms and crossbows in archery and multiple deer tag violations.  Conservation officials say potential fines and civil damages in these cases could exceed 100-thousand dollars.

 

 

 

Iowa State Bowl Game Still On Despite COVID Surge

(Orlando, FL)  —  COVID has forced some bowl games to cancel but the Cheez-It Bowl in Orlando featuring Iowa State and Clemson is ready for today’s (Wednesday) late afternoon kickoff (4:45 pm CST). Cyclone coach Matt Campbell says he expects everyone to be available for the game. Campbell says his team has been lucky to avoid any COVID issues and he feels bad for the teams that have been forced to withdraw from bowl games. He says it is really hard for senior players to lose their bowl game. Clemson coach Dabo (dah-boh) Swinney (swee-nee) also said Tuesday COVID has had limited impact on the Tigers.