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KLEM PM News Update Dec 15th, 2010

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O'Brien's average price came in at $7,148 compared to $6,153 last year.  Sioux County is at a $7,048 per acre for 2010 up from $6,028 last year. Of the nine crop reporting districts in the state, the Iowa State survey found the highest land values were reported for Northwest Iowa at $6,356 per acre; the lowest land values were reported for South Central Iowa at $2,690 per acre.

The volatility in corn and soybean prices and production costs lead to tremendous uncertainty and volatility in the land market, as historically reflected in the Iowa State survey. Land values were up 22 percent in 2007, down 2.2 percent in 2009 and up 15.9 percent in 2010. Since 2004, Iowa land values are up 93 percent.

Duffy said land values should remain strong at least for the next several months. Beyond that there is a fair degree of uncertainty with respect to whether land values can maintain their current levels. Duffy said that some experts are wary that this is a speculative bubble. Duffy says that he feels the fundamentals dictate the increases the state of Iowa has been experiencing.

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Additional information on the 2010 Iowa Land Value survey is available online at www.extension.iastate.edu/landvalue/

Plymouth County Courthouse Annex Update

(LE MARS) After a construction meeting Tuesday mornng, County Board Supervisor Craig Anderson told the board that despite the weather, progress is being made on the Courthouse Annex building 

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Anderson also said that the main area was supposed to be set yesterday, but was rescheduled for today due to a crane issue. 

The Courthouse Annex is being built to house juvenile court staff, several county departments and to allow more space for storage. Weather permitting it is expected that the project will be completed in early spring.

Police search for escaped Iowa inmate

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) Police say an alleged bank robber has escaped from custody at an Iowa City hospital and eluded authorities for hours in his hospital gown during a crime spree.

Authorities say 20-year-old inmate Anthony Koehlhoeffer ( kohl-HEF'-er) ran away while receiving treatment at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics at about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, assaulted a female student and stole her car. She was not seriously injured.

Police say a man believed to be Koehlhoeffer stole a green Buick Wednesday morning at an Iowa City convenience store, crashed the car and fled on foot.

Authorities said a woman later said she was carjacked by a man they believe to be Koehlhoeffer, who forced her to drive him about 55 miles east to Bettendorf. Authorities are still looking for him.

Iowa lawmakers at odds over state-funded preschool

(DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowa legislative leaders are at odds over the benefits of a state-funded voluntary preschool program for four-year-olds, with Republicans saying it doesn't give much of a boost and Democrats saying it's critical.

Senate Minority Leader Paul McKinley, a Republican, says the preschool program is questionable and the state should cut spending and use the money to give parents a choice between public and private preschools.

Democrats control the Senate, and Senate President Jack Kibbie says Democrats will protect the program. He doesn't foresee making any changes.

State education officials have said its purpose is to increase the number of Iowa children participating in quality preschool programs.

Peninsula Gaming wins Kansas casino project

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) A Kansas review board has voted to award a casino project in Sumner County to Peninsula Gaming, citing the potential to generate more revenue for the state than its competitor.

Wednesday's 6-1 vote by the Kansas Lottery Gaming Facility Review Board clears the way for the Iowa-based company to build its hotel, casino and equine center near Mulvane on Interstate 35.

Board members cited the potential for more revenue to be generated by the Peninsula project than Global Gaming's proposal for a project on I-35 near Wellington.

The Kansas Lottery will own the rights to the new gambling and the gambling equipment, and the state will claim 22 percent of the gambling revenues.

Another court date for MN teen in Iowa killings

DAKOTA CITY, Iowa (AP) A Minnesota teenager charged with killing two convenience store clerks in two counties in northern Iowa faces a second arraignment later this month.

Seventeen-year-old Michael Swanson, of St. Louis Park, Minn., is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree robbery in Kossuth and Humboldt counties in the Nov. 15 slayings of two women in Algona and Humboldt. He will be tried as an adult.

Online court records show a Dec. 28 arraignment was set Tuesday in Humboldt County. Swanson is to be arraigned on Monday in Kossuth County.

Swanson remains in the Kossuth County jail on $1 million bond.

Nordex announces contract with Iowa wind farm

JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) Nordex USA has announced a contract in which wind turbines produced at the company's new plant in Jonesboro will be sold to an Iowa wind farm.

The Chicago-based company said Tuesday that wind farm developer RPM Access will purchase 17 turbines built in Jonesboro for a 41 megawatt wind farm in Delaware County, Iowa.

The order is the second for Nordex since it dedicated the plant in Jonesboro in October. The company said the plant now has more than 70 employees and could expand to about 700 workers during the next four years.

Iowa's Clayborn named third-team All-America

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn has been named a third-team All-America pick by The Associated Press.

The AP announced their All-America teams Tuesday.

Clayborn, a 6-foot-4, 285-pound senior, was named first-team All-Big Ten in each of the past two seasons.

Clayborn was also one of four finalists for the Lombardi Award, given to the nation's top lineman.

Clayborn, who is projected as a potential high pick in next spring's NFL Draft, wraps up his Iowa career against Missouri in the Insight Bowl on Dec. 28.

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