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KLEM News PM Update October 29, 2010

Branstad, a candidate for a fifth term as the state's governor, is traveling in Floyd, Webster, Sac, Buena Vista and Plymouth counties today (Friday). Branstad is joined by candidate for Lt. Governor, Kim Reynolds.

Branstad's campaign announced this morning that Republican U-S Senator Chuck Grassley, is campaigning with Branstad and Reynolds today. Early this afternoon, KLEM News was notified that attorney general candidate Brenna Findley will also be in Le Mars for campaign appearances such as the one at the Ice Cream Parlor.

Their public campaign stops include the Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor in Le Mars at 5:15 this afternoon.

St. Luke's to expand on Sioux City's east side

(SIOUX CITY)--A Sioux City health care provider is extending its services on Sioux City's east side.

St. Luke's Health System announced plans to extend health care offerings through expanded outpatient services on the new outpatient campus in the Sunnybrook Business District in Sioux City's Morningside area.

The campus is to be an extension of St. Luke's Regional Medical Center providing services by collaborating with physician partners.

In the past year, St. Luke's had about 88-hundred patients admitted for care. However, the number of outpatient visits was more 75-thousand.

Planning will include feedback from physicians and Siouxland residents. A steering committee has been set up.

Hoffert is accused of fraud

(EMMETSBURG) An Emmetsburg woman is accused of theft and fraud while working as a real estate settlement agent.

The U-S Attorney's Office released information about the two dozen charges in an indictment in federal court in Sioux City.

The indictment alleges that 59-year-old Jean Teresa Hoffert of Emmetsburg kept portions of sale or mortgage loan proceeds.

Hoffert was indicted on 13 charges of mail fraud, six charges of bank fraud, three charges of identity theft and three charges of money laundering.

Prosecutors claim between the spring of 2005 and the summer of 2008, Hoffert kept money rather than using it to pay off existing loans. One of the charges is based on claims she used more than 18-thousand dollars in loan proceeds to pay off a car loan. She's accused of concealing her actions by using the account numbers and names of others without the right to do that.

Hoffert's case is set for trial in Sioux City beginning January third.

Iowa sets record for early voting

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowans have set a record for early voting, with the number of ballots in the midterm election topping the 2008 presidential election.

Secretary of State Michael Mauro says as of Friday morning, voters had requested about 372,000 absentee ballots and had turned in nearly 300,000 early votes. That compares to the roughly 242,000 people who voted early in the 2008 election.

Drake University political science professor Dennis Goldford says the increase demonstrates that people now feel more comfortable voting early.

Lawmakers also have made it easier to vote early, now allowing voters to seek absentee ballots by mail or in person at local election offices.

1 dead in house fire in SE Iowa

WASHINGTON, Iowa (AP) Authorities say one person has died in a house fire in Washington in southeast Iowa.

The Washington County sheriff's office says emergency crews responded to the fire shortly before 9 p.m on Thursday. One person was taken to a hospital and was pronounced dead.

No other information was immediately released. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

November sentencing date set for Concepcion

CHARLES CITY, Iowa (AP) A Charles City teenager convicted earlier this year of killing his young cousin will be sentenced in November.

The Charles City Press reports Friday that the sentencing hearing for 15-year-old Edgar Concepcion Jr. will be the morning of Nov. 22 in Floyd County District Court. Earlier this month District Court Judge Bryan McKinley granted a defense motion asking for sentencing to be continued.

Concepcion was found guilty as an adult in June of first-degree murder and three other charges in the death of 3-year-old Krystel Banes in 2009.

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled that it wouldn't review Concepcion's conviction.

Concepcion remains in state custody.

$95 million approved for storm relief in Iowa

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) More than $95 million in federal funds have been approved to help Iowans recover from tornadoes and flooding earlier this year.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has accepted Iowa's plan to use $84.1 million under the Disaster Recovery Enhancement Fund. Most of that money will be used for public infrastructure programs such as flood mitigation strategies, health and safety of water systems and revitalization of infrastructure and levees.

More than $11 million in U.S. Small Business Administration loans also have been approved for Iowa to help homeowners, businesses and private nonprofit organizations repair or replace property damaged in tornadoes, severe storms or flooding between June 1 and Aug. 31.

Deadline nears for federal disaster aid in Iowa

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowans have until Nov. 12 to register for federal disaster assistance from this summer's storms, flooding and tornados.

State and federal officials are reminding Iowans about the deadline for homeowners, renters and business owners who had damage and live in one of 38 counties declared disaster areas.

Officials say so far, more than 12,800 people have registered for federal assistance. More than $24 million has been approved through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's individual and household programs. Over $11 million has been approved in low-interest disaster loans through the Small Business Administration.

Iowa's Scott County see increase in whooping cough

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) Iowa health officials say whooping cough is on the rise in Scott County.

WHBF-TV reports that the Iowa Department of Public Health has declared the county an outbreak area for the infectious disease, also known as pertussis. Officials say Scott County has had over 100 cases since July.

Roma Taylor with the county health department in Davenport says the disease seems to run in cycles, with an outbreak every five years.

Whooping cough starts with cold-like symptoms, but within a week or two, patients develop uncontrollable coughing spells. These coughs are accompanied by the telltale whooping sound as the patient gasps for air.

Iowa hospital sees drop in alcohol emergencies

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) An emergency room doctor says he believes Iowa City's 21-and-older bar age is behind a drop in alcohol-related ER visits by young people to University Hospitals.

The Gazette says Dr. Michael Takacs found ER visits by young adults age 18 to 22 decreased 25 percent when comparing a four-month period in 2009 to the same period this year.

Takacs conducts research on alcohol-related emergencies in patients of college age.

Matt Pfaltzgraf is with a group trying to get the law repealed. He says a lot of student drinking has shifted to house parties, where they may be less likely to call 911 unless someone is very sick.

Iowa City voters will decide Tuesday whether to keep or repeal the ordinance, which took effect June 1.

Waterloo police have an arrest-free day

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) Waterloo police say criminals apparently took the day off earlier this week.

According to the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, police made no arrests on Tuesday, apparently a first for the city in quite some time.

Capt. Tim Pillack says several employees who have worked for the police department for more than 30 years can't recall a single time the city went for more than 24 hours without an arrest.

Tuesday was cold with high winds and rain. Pillack says the ``bad guys were all inside.''

Police say a Waterloo man was arrested for a probation violation at 9 p.m. Monday. The city was arrest-free until 1 a.m. Wednesday when an officer pulled over a car with a bad brake light and found a woman who had an outstanding warrant.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


Submit your news release, confidential news tip or news idea by email klemnews@lemarscomm or by calling 712.546.4121 or 712.546.9672 fax.



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