Home News KLEM News for Friday, January 12

KLEM News for Friday, January 12


The National Weather Service says a Blizzard Warning is going to take effect midafternoon, as strong cold winds speed up across Plymouth County and northwest Iowa.

The Blizzard warning will be effect from 3 pm until midnight Saturday.  Also, a Wind Chill Warning will take effect at 6 pm, and extend to Tuesday morning.  Winds gusting to 40 miles per hour will create blowing snow, and dangerously low wind chills.  This will create hazardous road and driving conditions.  The Iowa Department of Transportation says Iowa Highway 3 is impassable nine miles east of Akron.  Also, Iowa Highway 12 south of Akron is completely snow covered, bridges are icy, and blowing and drifting snow is reported.



2nd District State Senator Jeff Taylor says his assignments this legislative session will place him in the middle of key legislation in the session that began this week.  One of his committee assignments will place him in a key funding role.


Senator Taylor will also serve on the Senate Judiciary Committee.


Iowa Senate District 2 covers the northern half of Plymouth County, including the city of Le Mars, and all of Sioux and Lyon Counties.



Due to potentially dangerous weather conditions, the Nikki Haley presidential campaign has cancelled three events today, including one in Le Mars.  Instead, Haley will host telephone town hall meetings to those communities.  She was scheduled to stop in Ft Dodge, Le Mars, and Council Bluffs today.


GOP Presidential Candidate Ron DeSantis visited Le Mars Thursday, with a stop at the Wells Ice Cream Parlor and Visitors Center.  He spoke on his debate performance against Nikki Haley earlier this week.  The one issue he emphasized was his pledge to close the US border with Mexico and Canada, and deport anyone in the US illegally.  He also fielded questions on a variety of topics.  An audience of 50 people attended the event.  De Santis earlier make a stop in Rock Rapids.



The panel of lawmakers that oversees state agency regulations has conducted its initial review of how the Iowa Board of Medicine intends to enforce Iowa’s six-week abortion ban. The law, passed in July, has not gone into effect due to a court challenge, but the board has drafted guidelines for when doctors may perform an abortion in cases of rape, incest, fetal abnormality or to save the life of the mother. Representative Rick Olson, a Democrat from Des Moines who’s a member of the panel, said the exception in cases of rape requires it to be prosecutable –and that word isn’t defined in the rules. Senator Nate Boulton, a Democrat from Des Moines, said the proposed rules do not cite the same kind of legal terms used in other types of medical cases, for example in workers compensation and malpractice claims. Republicans on the legislature’s Administrative Rules Review Committee did not comment during this week’s meeting.



The latest drought monitor showed overall drought and dryness in Iowa deteriorated somewhat in December.  Most of the state shows some level of dryness or drought. The area of D3 Extreme Drought expanded into parts of central Iowa, while a small area showing no dryness or drought was introduced in northwest Iowa. December saw areas affected by extreme drought increase from 27 percent of Iowa to 35 percent.

Precipitation for December was 1.79 inches, or 0.42 inches above normal. This marks only the fourth month of 2023 of above-average precipitation. Stations across western, southern and eastern Iowa reported positive departures with the wettest conditions in the northwest and southeast corners. The statewide average snowfall was 1.4 inches, 6.5 inches below normal. Monthly average temperatures were well above normal statewide with the warmest conditions reported across northern Iowa, where departures were nearly 12 degrees warmer than average.



Dordt University in Sioux Center has completed the “Planting for the Future” campaign, raising more than $103 million. The total significantly exceeds the fundraising goal of $90 million.  It was the most successful campaign in Dordt’s 68-year history. Over 6,000 individuals gave to the Planting for the Future campaign.

The campaign, which included many projects and initiatives, sought to make an unprecedented investment that would impact generations to come.

There were three main categories within the Planting for the Future campaign:

Expanding student scholarships, to which donors gave more than $24.2 million; New facilities, where Dordt officials were able to break ground this fall on a new dining commons and B.J. Haan Auditorium expansion;  Expansion of Dordt’s most innovative programs.  This included an expansion of simulation labs for Dordt’s nursing program.



The funeral was Thursday morning for the 11-year-old who was shot to death at Perry High School last week. Perry police say sixth grader Ahmir Jolliff was shot three times in the cafeteria by the 17-year-old gunman who wounded four other students and three adults — including the principal — before taking his own life. According to a post on the Perry Community School District website, elementary school students will head back to class next Thursday, which will be two weeks after the violence, while middle schoolers will return next Friday. The site says the return for high school students is “still being discussed as there are many factors to consider.”