Home News KLEM News for Friday, June 2

KLEM News for Friday, June 2


The Le Mars Police Department and the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office plan on partnering for enhanced patrols on Monday, June 5. On this date law enforcement officers will be on the look out for speeding drivers, distracted drivers, impaired drivers and drivers not wearing their seat belts.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2020, there were 10,893 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in the United States. In that same year, 58% of crash victims killed at night (6 PM – 5:59 AM) were not wearing their seat belts. In an effort to combat fatality and injury crashes, officers will be exhibiting zero tolerance for drivers who are not buckled, speeding, or driving while distracted or impaired.

In Iowa, the maximum penalty for a seat belt violation is $135.50 (Iowa code 321.445).
It is the goal of Le Mars Police and the Plymouth County Sheriffs Office to decrease injury and fatality accidents in Le Mars and Plymouth County. Please buckle up and drive safe!



Former President Donald Trump says there’s no way he could lose Iowa in 2024. Trump made a campaign swing thrugh the state Thursday. Trump’s appearances come as the G-O-P presidential field is expanding. North Dakota’s governor, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Trump’s own vice president Mike Pence are set to enter the race next week. Trump suggests those polling at one or two percent must know something he doesn’t about the race. Trump is seeking a rematch against President Joe Biden in 2024.



Today marks the annual Free Fishing Weekend in Iowa, and Plymouth County Conservation is planning an event on Sunday.

Victoria De Vos is the Naturalist at Plymouth County Conservation.

An Iowa free fishing weekend event is planned for Sunday June 4, from 2 to 5 pm. at Hillview Recreation Area near Hinton.

De Vos says there are plenty of places to fish in Plymouth County.

Free Fishing weekend allows Iowans to fish without a license for the entire weekend.



Events at the Preserve Iowa Summit began Thursday afternoon at the Warrior Hotel and Orpheum Theatre. Chris Kramer, Director of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs, says historic property owners, developers and planners, government officials and anyone with an interest in preservation have gathered for three days of workshops, presentations and an awards ceremony.

This year’s conference theme is “Sioux City Making Tracks”.

Kramer says the conference attendees will be getting out in the community to check out a variety of local landmarks.

The State Historical Society’s “History on the Move” bus is parked outside of the Sioux City Public Museum during the conference, which runs through Saturday. The bus museum features exhibits ranging from the Lewis and Clark Expedition to a NASA uniform worn by Iowa astronaut Peggy Whitson.



Tyson Foods has notified the South Dakota Department of Labor of the impending layoff of 262 workers.  The layoffs are of employees who have chosen not to relocate to Springdale, Arkansas in the aftermath of Tyson’s decision last October to move their corporate offices at Dakota Dunes and other locations to Springdale.  The final day of work for the Dunes employees is expected to July 31st.  The 262 Dakota Dunes employees will be terminated within 14 days of that date.  The Layoff also affects other workers at Tyson offices in Chicago and Downers Grove, Illinois.



Inflation is keeping prices high on all sorts of goods, and a survey of business leaders in Iowa and eight other Midwestern states finds prices rose nearly six-percent in the past year, but may only rise three-percent in the year ahead. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says the leading economic indicator for the region grew a modest amount during May compared to April, while Iowa’s figure fell. The survey found many employers in Iowa and the other states continue having trouble finding qualified workers to fill open positions, so they’re retaining workers. Goss says that’s creating another sort of problem — labor hoarding — which is bringing a drop in productivity. Goss says the survey found only about one in six employers reported job gains during the past month, almost the same as during April. He says a couple of industries, in particular, are struggling, including commercial real estate, and banking and finance.



Staffing shortages in Iowa nursing homes remain “alarmingly high” and are almost twice the national average, according to the state director of A-A-R-P Iowa. Brad Anderson says 42-percent of Iowa nursing homes are short-staffed, compared to 22-percent across the country. Anderson says staffing shortages can lead to poor resident care and, in some unfortunate cases, serious neglect. Part of the reason is that pay for direct care workers averages 16-dollars an hour, which he says is too low. The state legislature recently devoted an additional 15-million dollars in Medicaid funding to Iowa nursing homes, money Anderson says needs to be directed toward solving what he calls a “staffing crisis.” Iowa now has 430 nursing homes. Since January of 2022, at least 21 have closed.



The cost to rent an acre of Iowa farmland increased nine percent last year to a record 279 dollars. Iowa State University’s Alejandro Plastina says the strong farm economy with good profitability and high land values pushed the increase.  He says some input costs came down, and the increase in interest rates has not been a factor after several years of good farm income. Plastina says farmers have built up some cash reserves and are not using credit loans, operating loans as much as in other years in in the past. There was considerable variability across counties depending on the quality of the land  — but only Woodbury, Des Moines, Jefferson, Lucas, Muscatine, Van Buren, Wapello, and Warren counties saw declines in their overall average cash rents.