Home News Friday News, June 17

Friday News, June 17



The Iowa Supreme Court has overturned its previous ruling on the Constitutional Right to Abortion. The Supreme Court reversed its 2018 ruling that the Iowa Constitution creates a fundamental right to an abortion. This ruling came after the Supreme Court reviewed the 24-hour waiting period for abortion that was passed in 2020. Planned Parenthood said the law was not legal under the 2018 court ruling, but the Supreme Court disagreed. The ruling says the Iowa Constitution is silent on the specific terms “abortion” and “pregnancy.” The High Court says there is no support for Planned Parenthood’s reading that the due process clause of the Constitution provides a fundamental protection for abortion.



Ice Cream Days in Le Mars continues today with a full afternoon of activities downtown.  Earlier I talked with Shannon Rodenberg about the events to take place today.

Excessive heat and humidity are back in the forecast for this weekend.  The National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Watch from Saturday afternoon through Monday evening.

Dangerously hot conditions are expected, with heat indexes up to 108 possible.

Be careful to avoid heat stress in these conditions.  Kristin Ball, Nurse Manager at Floyd Valley Health, says fatigue and dehydration are your body’s warning signs of heat stress.  She says rehydration, wearing light clothing, and limiting time outdoors are the best ways to avoid heat stress.

Temperatures today will top out at 92 in Le Mars.  Saturday’s high temperature is projected to be 95.


The Woodbury County town of Hornick broke ground Thursday night on a long-awaited berm project. It’s hoped the earthen structure will protect the community from future floods, like the one that devastated the town in 2019. Hornick Mayor Scott Mitchell joined other community leaders in turning over dirt with shovels to launch the two-point-one million dollar project.
It’s been three years since water from the Little Sioux River overtopped a levee and flooded the town. Since then, Mitchell has worked to make sure such a disaster isn’t repeated. He says it’s a relief to know the town will soon have a new barrier of protection.

Former Iowa Congressman Steve King attended the event and says he saw the community pull together in the wake of the disaster to protect the town.

The berm should be complete by this fall to protect the town of about 250. The project was made possible through an award of state flood recovery funds.


The Plymouth County Road Department has closed two rural roads due to construction projects.
Hickory Ave will be closed between C-16 and 150th St. A crew is removing a bridge on Hickory, and replacing it with a box culvert. The one-mile stretch of Hickory will be reopened on July 15.
280th St, from K-18 east is closed for a bridge removal project. It, too, will be replaced with a box culvert.
That portion of 280th will reopen on July 22.


The Iowa Board of Regents will consider a tuition increase at the three state universities when it meets next Monday. A tuition hike of four-and-a-quarter percent is proposed. If approved, students at the University of Iowa would see their tuition increase by 331-dollars. Iowa State tuition would go up by 354-dollars and University of Northern Iowa tuition would increase by 355-dollars. Mandatory fees would also be raised. The Board of Regents says the increase is needed after the Legislature increased state funding by five-and-a-half-million dollars when 15-million had been requested.



Sioux City will continue to have daily passenger jet service at least through July 31st. K-M-E-G/T-V reports that Skywest will continue to offer two flights a day in order to not disrupt already-booked flights this summer. After that, the number of daily flights could be reduced to one or remain the same. A board member for Sioux Gateway Airport says the carrier will continue to service Sioux City until next year or until a new Essential Air Service (E-A-S) provider is found.



Elder abuse will be defined as a crime in Iowa when a new law takes effect July First. Governor Reynolds has approved a bill that creates new criminal penalties for emotional abuse and neglect of Iowans who are 60 or older. She says, “the safety and wellbeing of older Iowans is so very important, and this bill ensures that there will be consequences for those who target and harm them.” The bill also establishes a new criminal charge of financial exploitation of an older individual. The governor held a bill signing ceremony Wednesday at a senior living center in Williamsburg.



Researchers at Iowa State University using satellite data have found an impact from city lights on trees and plants. Yuyu Zhou (U-U Jow like wow) is an associate professor of geological and atmospheric sciences at Iowa State. He says the impact is significant, as “artificial nighttime lights” can advance the date of breaking leaf buds in the spring by nearly nine days and delay the coloring of leaves by about six days in the fall. Those who suffer from allergies could feel an impact from earlier and longer pollen seasons. Zhou says there is one positive, though — longer growing seasons for farms in urban areas.



Some Minnesotans are asking, “does Governor Tim Walz really have a lake cabin in South Dakota?” Twitter activity ramped up when former Minnesota Viking Matt Birk, lieutenant governor running mate of Walz’s Republican challenger Scott Jensen, tweeted “Here’s a guy from Nebraska, who just bought a lake place in South Dakota, aiming to turn us into California, lecturing us about OUR Minnesota values.” But Walz’ campaign manager says neither the governor nor the First Lady own any property, let alone one in South Dakota — adding that kind of dishonesty doesn’t belong in the governor’s office.  Walz sold his Mankato home before moving into the Governor’s Residence. Property records and the governor’s most recent economic disclosure seem to support his no-real-estate status.