Home News KLEM News for Thursday, February 9, 2023

KLEM News for Thursday, February 9, 2023


The Floyd Valley Health Care Auxiliary will be awarding two scholarships to area students this spring, and those scholarships will be worth more.

Auxiliary Committee member Vicki Dixon says the scholarships are for graduating seniors from Plymouth County who wish to further their education in health care.

Applications have been sent to area schools.

This past fall the Auxiliary board voted to increase the amount of this award from $1,000 to $2,000 per student award.

The scholarship recipient can use the scholarship in several ways.

To be eligible, the applicant must be a resident of the Floyd Valley Healthcare service area, accepted at an accredited school and pursuing a health-related career.

This is the 45th year of the Auxiliary’s scholarship program, dating back to 1978. In that time, over 100-thosuand dollars in scholarships have been awarded to Plymouth County students.

Applications must be returned to Diane Dreckman, by April 3, 2023; instructions are on the form.



The remains of a Monticello seaman who died in World War Two are coming back to Iowa for burial. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency says Navy Seaman First Class Donald A. Stott was assigned to the battleship U-S-S Oklahoma at Pearl Harbor when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft on December 7th, 1941. The Oklahoma quickly capsized and Stott was among 429 crewmen who died. His remains were buried along with other unknowns in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu. New methods that include D-N-A were later used to identity his remains. Stott will be buried in Monticello on March 25th.



Senator Joni Ernst says trained dogs should search every vehicle driving north through border crossings along the U-S/Mexico border — to stop the flow of fentanyl and other illegal drugs.


Ernst recently saw a patrol with up to five drug sniffing dogs in action at the border crossing at San Diego.

There are 38 border crossings for vehicle traffic between the U.S. and Mexico, but the San Diego Port of Entry is the world’s busiest land border crossing. Ernst says they’re training more dogs and handlers to take shifts there and it will take a while to have enough canines to search all border crossings.

Ernst led a congressional delegation to the southern border this past weekend, with stops in California and New Mexico.



A Union Pacific Railroad repair crew is repairing the crossing at the 12th St SW intersection.  This crossing has been closed since mid-November because of damages incurred to the warning signals by a passing truck.  Traffic has had to cross at 6th St SW and 18th St SW during the closure.

The work is expected to be completed by the end of today.


The Le Mars city council has been asked to update their lease with a firm which operates the former Sacred Heart Hospital.  The site, owned by the city, was converted to apartments in 1977, after the hospital closed.  Weinberg Investments, Inc. has a 99-year lease with the city. There’s a new entity, Sioux Falls Environmental Access, which has taken over the Weinberg Investments firm.  A representative of the group says they are now refinancing a 2 million dollar loan to make renovations at the Floyd Valley Apartments.  The renovations include updating the fire sprinkler system, renovating windows, and updating fixtures and appliances in the 59 single-bedroom units.  With the ownership change, the firm seeks to reset terms of the lease.  The city of Le Mars has been paid 1500 dollars a year on the 99-year lease.  They seek to update the payment as well.  The City Council has set a public hearing on the lease to take place February 21.



A Sioux City man has admitted to having someone else try to claim a 24-hundred dollar slot machine jackpot he won at the Hard Rock Casino.   Prosecutors say because he owed money to the state 57-year-old Dajo Granberry convinced another man to sit at the slot machine and claim that he had won the money. Grandberry was arrested November 30th and charged with unlawful betting, fraudulent claim, and solicitation to commit a felony. In a plea agreement. Granberry pled guilty to both felony criminal charges. He was sentenced to suspended consecutive five year terms on each count and placed on  two years probation that includes substance abuse and mental health evaluations.



The Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office is reminding the public of numerous scams that we have been visited on county residents.  Victims will receive unsolicited calls or contact involving issues with identity, accounts or computers/programs.  In nearly all of these scams, the scammer is very helpful to you on how to get your money to them.  They advise you, “Don’t tell the bank or business what the money is for.”  This includes the use of gift cards to pay; the use of Bitcoin; gaining access to your computer and bank accounts; a grandchild in an accident or arrested, needing money for repairs or bail; or to tell you your accounts are exposed, and you need to send money to protect them.

Most often these scams originate from outside of the United States and are very difficult to track and/or find.  You are urged to report to the Sheriff’s Office if you have been a victim.

The Sheriff’s Office warns against sending or giving personal information over the phone or computer.  Be certain you know where the information is going.

If you have any doubt or it just doesn’t feel right, talk to someone you trust or call the Sheriff’s Office.



The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office retired canine Sonny, a Belgian Tervuren K9 who joined the department in August of 2014; he was handled by Sergeant Justin De Bruin.  Sonny was Sergeant De Bruin’s second police canine after De Bruin’s first canine, Molly, a yellow lab trained in narcotic detection, retired in July of 2014.  Sonny was a dual-purpose police canine, trained in both criminal apprehension and narcotic detection.  Sonny excelled and won many top awards with the United States Police Canine Association and assisted in many drug finds located on traffic stops and in the field.  Replacing Sonny is Rocky, a single purpose German Shorthair trained in narcotic detection.  Rocky will be handled by Deputy Agustin Matinez and will also have training in tracking in the future.



Most Republicans in the Iowa House and Senate have voted to set limits on pain and suffering damages from medical malpractice lawsuits. The move has been one of the governor’s priorities and she calls the bill reasonable reform. Under the new guidelines, those non-economic damages for medical malpractice claims against hospitals would be limited to a maximum of two million dollars. For clinics, nursing homes and individual physicians the cap would be one million. Republicans in the legislature who supported the bill say the cost of liability insurance is going up because of lottery-sized medical malpractice verdicts and that’s hurting recruiting and retention of doctors. Critics, including 16 Republicans in the legislature, say it will boost  insurance company profits and the bill sets a price tag on the value of lives harmed or lost due to medical mistakes.



There’ll be plenty of patrol cars on the road looking for drunk and impaired drivers this Super Bowl weekend. Sergeant Paul Gardner of the Iowa State Patrol says an extra enforcement effort is planned to try and get everyone home safely. He says last year there was a spike in deaths across the country with 244 people killed in traffic deaths and the 12-hour period during and after the Superbowl game.  He says a study of the similar period one weekend later showed 187 deaths.  Gardner says  46 percent of those deaths during the Superbowl Sunday night in traffic crashes were alcohol-related.