Home News KLEM News for Thursday, December 21

KLEM News for Thursday, December 21


The city council of Le Mars this week approved the purchase of a new ambulance and ladder truck for Le Mars Fire Rescue.  Chief Dave Schipper says the vehicles need to be ordered now in order to have them delivered on time.


The funding for these vehicles will come from two different sources.  The city has a pool of funds remaining from the American Rescue Plan Act which will be applied to the purchase the new ambulance.


That leaves 335-thousand left in that account after the purchase.  The ladder truck will cost 1.4 million, and will be paid for from Local Option Sales Tax proceeds.  The city has 3.5 million dollars in this fund.  The old ladder truck will be sold by Le Mars Fire-Rescue.   Schipper says the price does not include equipping the vehicles.


The community helps pay for equipping the new vehicles.


Chief Schipper says they end up selling the old equipment themselves.


They might get a good price for their old ladder truck


New vehicles are expensive, but the costs can be spread out over time.


The ladder truck is a versatile piece of equipment..


The new purchases are made now, because the vehicles will be delivered when they’ve been in service for 25 years, Supply chain issues mean that it takes two years now to deliver a new ambulance, and three to four years for a ladder truck.


The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors, in their capacity as the county Drainage Board, passed a motion urging the county engineer to begin clearing up an over grown ditch at Akron, near the site of a proposed residential development.
A 300-foot stretch of ditch north of 160th Street is overgrown with trees, some reaching a height of 50 feet.
The Supervisors gaveled in as the county Drainage Board to discuss costs and assessments for the work.
County Engineer Tom Rohe says the cost of removing the trees are estimated between 35 and 50-thousand dollars. The work would be funded through the Akron Drainage fund, but that only contains 26-thousand dollars. The county would have to assess parcel owners in the drainage area to cover the remaining costs of the project.
The motion urges immediate work on tree removal, while weather is favorable. Early next year, they will consider assessing parcel owners for the costs of the project.



U.S. Representative Randy Feenstra  of Hull announced Wednesday that he would seek re-election to a third term serving Iowa’s 4th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Rep. Feenstra Says he ran for Congress with the promise that he would “deliver real, conservative results for our families, farmers, main street businesses, and rural communities.”  Some of the legislation he introduced would ban China from buying US farmland, finish the border wall and cut wasteful spending.  He also voted for high-quality healthcare and benefits for veterans, to end student loan bailouts by the government, and to in his words “protect girls’ sports.  His campaign also released a list of Iowans who endorse his candidacy, including Governor Kim Reynolds, the other three Congressman from Iowa, all Republicans.  Feenstra has secured the endorsements of every statewide elected Republican and a long list of Iowa Republican legislators, including State Senators Jeff Taylor of Sioux Center, and Rocky De Witt of Sioux City. State Representatives Tom Jeneary of Le Mars, Jacob Bossman of Sgt Bluff,  John Wills of Spirit Lake and Megan Jones of Sioux Rapids also endorsed Feenstra.



The Republican presidential candidates campaigning in Iowa today (Wednesday) are denouncing a Colorado Supreme Court ruling that could keep former President Trump’s name off the primary ballot in that state. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis says Trump did not get due process and he expects the U-S Supreme Court to overturn the decision, but DeSantis suggests it’s an effective legal stunt by liberals to boost Trump — so the whole General Election’s going to be about Trump’s legal situation. DeSantis says if he’s the nominee, the election will be about Biden’s failures. Former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley says she’s running because she doesn’t think having Trump be president again would be good for the country, but Haley says it’s up to voters to make that decision, not judges. Businessman Vivek Ramaswamy has vowed to withdraw his name from the Colorado Primary ballot if Trump’s name isn’t on it.



Triple-A’s mid-week report shows the average price for a gallon of unleaded gasoline in Iowa is 2-85 ($2.85). That’s three cents higher than last Wednesday, but below the national average of 3-bucks ($3) a gallon. Retail diesel prices in Iowa fell 12 cents this week. Today’s statewide average price for a gallon of diesel is three-dollars-and-73 cents ($3.73).



Iowans who have sidewalks and driveways they care for sometimes face a quandary during the wintertime about the use of salt to break up ice and provide traction. Aaron Steil, a consumer horticulture specialist at the Iowa State University Extension, says if you don’t use enough ice-melt, you might slip and fall, but if you use too much, the eventual runoff could critically damage your lawn and nearby plants. The chemicals used in some ice-melting pellets can cause damage to your concrete, too, especially if it’s newly poured this year. Steil says on the Iowa State University campus, they mix sand in with salt to cut down on the corrosion salt causes, while still offering some traction for vehicles and pedestrians navigating icy areas.