WELLS ANNOUNCES MAJOR EXPANSION
Wells Enterprises today announced a major expansion of their Dunkirk, New York facility. Chief Operating Officer Mark Meyer says this is part of a plan that has been in the works since the Dunkirk plant was acquired four years ago.
Meyer says the expansion will more than double the facility’s current production, and add 200 new jobs to the local workforce.
This will aid the company’s plans for growth in novelty and packaged ice cream, and enable future innovation. Meyer says it’s hard to say at this point what specific projects they will make in the expanded plant.
Construction on the new facility will begin in the fall of this year. Groundbreaking will take place in early 2024, and the project is expected to be operational in 2025.
The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors today approved a project to build a new maintenance facility at Hillview Park. County Conservatrion Director Nick Beeck presented plans for a 42 by 78 foot steel building at the top of a hill along the entrance road to the park’s shop. Beeck told the Supervisors that funding for the project is in the county budget, an estimated 300-thousand dollars. A local contractor, Boehlke Construction, made an offer to build the structure for 188-thousand dollars, without dirt work and electrical. Beeck said the project could come in around the budget estimate if begun by this fall. and be completed next year. The Supervisors approved a motion to approve the project, and passed another motion to pay for it out of the general fund.
RECORD HEAT THROUGH THURSDAY
This could be the hottest week Iowans have endured in years, as near-record to record heat is likely. Forecasters say highs through Thursday will range from 95 to 105 degrees, with heat indices as high as 115. If the forecast holds, National Weather Service meteorologist Andrew Ansorge (an-SORE-ghee) says it will be the first time in a decade that August has had four or more consecutive days this hot in Des Moines.
Triple-digit temperatures are common in August, but he says highs are typically in the 80s by this late in the month. Southern California was just hit with its first tropical storm in more than 80 years, though it was a hurricane in the Pacific Ocean for a while. Ansorge says that’s one of the reasons temperatures will be near or above 100 degrees in Iowa most of this week, as the low pressure system is pushing record high heat from the Southwest to the Midwest.
All of Iowa is under an excessive heat warning through at least Wednesday night, and relief may not come until Friday. The National Weather Service says this may be Iowa’s hottest string of consecutive days since 2013. The service predicts above-normal temperatures until September.
JUVENILES CHARGED IN STORM LAKE FIGHT
An investigation into three fights in Storm Lake in July has led to a total of 13 juveniles between the ages of 15 and 17 being charged. Ryan Thompson reports.
CARBON PIPELINE HEARING OPENS TODAY
The first public hearing is today (Tuesday) for one of the three proposed carbon dioxide pipelines that would run through the state. Summit Carbon Solutions is seeking a permit from the Iowa Utilities Board to operate and maintain 687 miles of pipeline through 29 Iowa counties, including Plymouth County. The I-U-B says Summit Carbon is requesting the right to use eminent domain for approximately 973 parcels on the proposed pipeline route. The hearing begins at 10 a-m at the Cardiff Event Center in Fort Dodge. The I-U-B is livestreaming the hearing, which is expected to last for several days. The hearing is part of all the information that is being presented to the Board as it makes its decision.
TRUMP LEADS LATEST IOWA POLL
A Des Moines Register/N-B-C News Iowa Poll shows former President Donald Trump has the support of 42 percent of likely Iowa Republican Caucus-goers. The poll was conducted last week, from Sunday through Thursday. Pollster Ann Selzer says the fourth indictment filed against Trump helped him, as the polling shows an uptick in Trump’s support after the Georgia indictment was announced. Trump’s closest competitor is Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who had 19 percent in the Iowa Poll. No other candidate had double-digit support.
ERNST CHEERS ACTION ON MEXICO CORN IMPORTS
Iowa Senator Joni Ernst says the Biden Administration has finally called for arbitrators to settle a dispute with Mexico over U-S corn imports. Ernst says she’s been pushing the U-S Trade Representative to take this step since last November. In 2024, Mexico plans to ban the use of genetically modified corn in products like flour and tortillas that are made for human consumption. According to the U-S-D-A, about 90 percent of U-S corn is grown from genetically engineered seeds and Ernst says 16 million tons of Iowa-grown corn is exported to Mexico each year. U-S officials say Mexico’s ban on genetically modified corn is not based on science and is a violation of the U-S-Mexico-Canada Agreement that took effect three years ago.