Home News Wednesday Afternoon News, March 9th

Wednesday Afternoon News, March 9th


County Supervisors Discuss Future Of Elk Avenue With Rural Residents

(Le Mars) — Rural Plymouth County residents that utilize Elk Avenue appeared before the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday to discuss the road’s future.  The county governing board has indicated an interest to vacate the stretch of roadway, mainly due to a deteriorating bridge that would be too costly to replace.  Dolf Ivener along with Brad and Chad Banks spoke in favor of keeping the road open, or at least discuss other possible options that would benefit everyone.  Elk Avenue is already been designated as a minimum maintenance roadway.  Ivener was the first to address the issue.

Dolf Ivener is seen sharing his views about Elk Avenue with the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors.

Plymouth County engineer Tom Rohe was asked by the supervisors for his assessment of the road, and the various options available for the deteriorating bridge.

Rohe says there Is the option of inserting a flat rail car as a bridge crossing.

Supervisor Craig Anderson admits driving on Elk Avenue and across the bridge, and acknowledges the bridge is weak.  Brad Banks also spoke to the supervisors about keeping the road open, or converting it to a private road.

Banks, a cow-calf producer and former state legislator, says that he and his son use the road to get to their property.

Anderson asked for Bank’s opinion about installing a railroad flat car as a bridge, and turning the road into a private road?

The stretch of road in question lies south of Westfield and is between Echo Road and County Road C-43 located within Sioux township. No action or decision was made during the County Supervisor meeting.




Ernst And Grassley Hold Joint News Conference Requesting President Biden To Ramp Up Bio-fuels To Help Lower Gasoline Prices

(Washington) –On Wednesday morning, Republican U-S Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst both from Iowa, held a joint news conference in which they are asking the Biden Administration, along with their Democratic colleagues, to approve using bio-fuels made from corn and soybeans to help bring down the rapidly rising price of gasoline and diesel fuel.  President Biden on Tuesday has announced the United States would no longer accept petroleum oil from Russia, as a result of the invasion into the Ukraine.  Senator Joni Ernst says Biden refuses to look at home-grown energy sources.

Senator Chuck Grassley echoed many of Ernst’s sentiments, and says prior to the Biden Administration, the United States was independent upon our energy needs, now we are again dependent on foreign oil.

The two senators were asked what would be needed to change the minds of their Democratic colleagues to accept Midwest energy, as opposed to Mideast energy?

The Iowa U-S senators claim that if ethanol production would be allowed to be ramp up, then gasoline prices would drop.  Both Grassley and Ernst are pushing for E-15 ethanol blended fuel to be available the entire year long.





Biden Weighs in on Iowa School Shooting

(Des Moines, IA) — President Joe Biden is expressing sympathy for the family of the teenager killed in Monday’s drive-by shooting outside Des Moines East High School. The president issued a written statement which said he and First Lady Jill Biden pray for the victim’s family and for everyone impacted by “yet another senseless act of gun violence.” Des Moines police have identified the victim as 15-year-old Jose David Lopez of Des Moines. Two East High female students who were not targeted by the shooters were also wounded. Their names have not been released.


Woman Dies in Head-On Crash in Audubon County

(Atlantic, IA) — A southwest Iowa woman has been killed in a crash in Audubon County. The Iowa State Patrol said 56-year-old Lee Ann Hansen of Atlantic died in the crash that occurred west of Brayton at around 12:35 P-M. Hansen was driving an S-U-V westbound on 320th Street, west of Brayton, when her vehicle met a pickup at the crest of a hill. The vehicles collided head-on and ended up in the ditch. Hansen was not wearing a seat belt. She died at the scene. The driver of the pickup, 30-year-old Gregory Keith Gregerson, of Harlan, who wore his seat belt, suffered minor injuries.


High School Graduation Rates Down Slightly

(Des Moines, IA) — The Iowa Department of Education reports four-year graduations rates for the class of 2021 dropped slightly in the wake of the pandemic. The Department’s Information Bureau Chief, Jeff Pennington, says two factors impacted the numbers — an increase in students who dropped out, and a larger percentage of kids taking a fifth year of high school. Pennington says both factors are related to the pandemic. The data show 90-point-two percent of students last year graduated within four years, down from 91-point-eight percent in 2020. Although the drop is small, Pennington says it goes against what had been a ten-year trend of increases, and he expects things to rebound as schools are now back to normal schedules following the height of the pandemic.


Fundraising Underway to Help Winterset Tornado Victims

(Winterset, IA) — A disaster recovery fund set up by the Greater Madison County Community Foundation is taking donations to support families impacted by Saturday’s deadly tornado. The E-F-4 twister killed six people in Winterset and damaged or destroyed more than 50 area homes. Foundation manager Tom Leners (LEN-ers) says with volatile prices for building materials, insurance and government relief may fall short of what people need to repair and rebuild. Leners says the fund could also help pay for medical costs, deductibles, or clean-up jobs not covered by insurance. The local Chamber of Commerce is asking people to donate gift cards to help victims cover the cost of gas, groceries and other essentials.