Home News Tuesday News, June 14

Tuesday News, June 14

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PLYMOUTH COUNTY SUPERVISORS

The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors approved a contract for a Minnesota firm to microsurface 13 miles of county road. Astech Corporation of St Cloud, Minnesota, will resurface 13 miles of county road C16, from Iowa Highway 60 east of the Cherokee County line. The cost of the project is some 738-thousand dollars. County Engineer Tom Rohe explained that microsurfacing involves preparing the asphalt pavement to remove any unevenness, and then paving two 3/8 inch layers of asphalt atop the road surface. Rohe says the resulting surface is durable, and long-lasting.

The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors approved a canvass of  returns from the primary elections of a week ago. Auditor Stacey Feldman reported to the Board that there were 2021
votes cast, out of 18,155 eligible voters. Turnout in the elections was 11.13%. The statewide voter turnout was 16 percent.
County officials elected in the primaries included Supervisors Chairman Don Kass, John Meis, and Craig A Anderson. County Attorney Darin Raymond, County Treasurer Shelly Sitzmann, and County Recorder Jolynn Goodchild all won their elections.
All of these candidates are Republicans, running unopposed. No
Democrats ran for elected office in the county primary elections.

 

DE JONG CROPS
Recent broad weather swings have affected crops planted this spring. But the Area Crop Specialist says it could be worse.
Joel De Jong says just in the past three weeks, corn and soybean fields have had to overcome near-freezing temperatures, and now triple-digit heat.

De Jong says weather could still change in the middle of the season, as it did last year.

Plymouth County doesn’t always get in on every moisture episode.

Some plants starting to curl in order to reduce moisture demand. Plymouth County’s varying soil types make them vulnerable to moisture stress.

One plus to all this heat, where crops are concerned, is the high humidities.

But it could be worse for plants, as they’re not at a critical development stage yet.

Subsoil moisture supplies have not yet been tapped, and DeJong says they are bigger this spring than he anticipated. There are 7 to 8 inches of moisture available, about a third of what it takes to complete a crop.

 

MENTAL HEALTH WORKFORCE

Governor Kim Reynolds has signed two bills into law that are designed to address a lack of treatment options for Iowans seeking mental health care services. One bill sets up a loan repayment program for students who agree to work in an underserved area of Iowa after they get a degree in the mental health field. Representative Timi (like “Timmy”) Brown-Powers of Waterloo says it will hopefully boost the number of mental health professionals working in rural Iowa. The other new law will let a state board issue provisional licenses to doctoral students in psychology — so they can practice during their internship with a licensed psychologist. Senator Jeff Edler of State Center says it’s another in a long line of bills that have addressed the workforce shortage in the mental health field.

 

IOWA MANUFACTURERS
An Iowa manufacturing official is in Washington, D-C, this week
urging full funding for U-S international affairs. Daryl
Bouwkamp with Vermeer Corporation says having diplomatic and
humanitarian missions around the world benefits trade. Bouwkamp
is taking part in a forum sponsored by the U-S Global Leadership
Coalition. That group estimates 20-percent of the jobs in Iowa
are tied to international trade. He says if we don’t spend
money on American diplomacy we will “just have to purchase more
bullets.”

 

GAS PRICE IMPACT

The report on vehicle travel from the D-O-T is showing some impact on the state’s roadways. Stuart Anderson told the Transportation Commission Monday that municipal traffic in recent months has lagged behind pre-pandemic levels — reflecting long-term trends now of more teleworking. He says there was “an across the board” drop of “about two percent in traffic counts statewide. Anderson says the higher cost of driving is likely behind the drop.

 

STATUE THIEVES

Lincoln police are investigating the theft of a statue from a park. Officers were called to Jan Pitsch Green Park on Sunday after someone allegedly stole a statue of a tennis racket. The two-foot-tall statue was taken sometime between last Thursday and Sunday.

 

LEGION RIDERS

A military veterans support group is helping fellow vets raise service dogs.  Doug Harms, a director with the American Legion Riders, made the award at their meeting Sunday afternoon in Le Mars.

A combination of funding helps raise the donations they awarded last Sunday.  It comes from the Legion Riders themselves, and from area businesses.

Harms says another fundraiser will take place in August.  All proceeds from these fundraisers go to support military veterans.

Want to help?  Talk to an American Legion member, or drop by the Legion hall.

 

ORANGE CITY ARRESTS

Three Orange City residents were arrested Saturday on drug charges.  The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office arrested Farrah La Flamme, age 26, Keagan Robinson, age 27, and Daryl Dailey, Jr., age 42. Sheriffs Deputies responded to a complaint from an Orange City motel that they found drugs allegedly belonging to LaFlamme.  After deputies arrived, they discovered drugs in the possession of the three suspects. La Flamme and Robinson were charged with several drug counts, and neglect or abandonment of a dependent person.  Dailey, Jr, was charged with 3rd offense drug possession.  Orange City Police assisted the Sheriffs Deputies.

 

US HOUSE GOP

Three Republican members of the U-S House focused their messages to party members on President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Saturday.  Randy Feenstra, Ashley Hinson, and Mariannette Miller-Meeks were speaking at the Iowa Republican Party’s state convention.  All three are running for re-election.  Feenstra urged party members to “take back this country from the liberal progressives.”  Hinson labeled herself “Nancy Pelosi’s worst nightmare.”  And, Miller-Meeks says the atmosphere is ripe for a red tsunami for Republicans in November.  The three incumbents didn’t mention the names of the Democrats running against them.

 

DOT CHARGING STATIONS

The Iowa Department of Transportation is taking public input on the plan to develop a network of electric vehicle charging stations across the state. The D-O-T’s Stuart Anderson says the state will get 50 million in federal dollars over five years for what’s called the National Electric Vehicle infrastructure program.

The state can only use the funds in areas that are designated as alternative fuel corridors.

He says once that system is fully built out, then the funds can be used to expand charging infrastructure elsewhere across the state.  Anderson says the charging stations will require a relatively significant amount of electricity.

Some businesses have already installed electric vehicle charging stations, and Anderson says the charges can be anywhere that meets the guidelines.

Level three is the fastest method of charging, and level one is the slowest.  Anderson encourages anyone with comments on the proposal to let them know. He says the comments will have the most impact if they are given before June 24th.

Anderson says they will continue to accept comments after June 24th, but will start working on the proposal. The plan is due August 1st, and then it has to be reviewed and approved at the federal level. Anderson says they expect federal approval will be done by September 30th —  and then they can start the process to identify the locations and a process for procuring them. He says every state has money from the federal government for this type of plan — and that means there is demand for the equipment — so it could take one year or more to get everything installed.