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KLEM News PM Update March 14, 2011

At a legislative forum in Le Mars Saturday, State Representative Chuck Soderberg said arbitrators of public employee labor disputes now must choose between one of the two sides' proposal. The House passed measure changes that as Soderberg explained.

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Soderberg said the changes approved by the House "did not gut the Collective Bargaining Law" in the area of what can be negotiated.

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Soderberg said the changes do NOT affect contracts with employees already in place.

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The majority leader in the Senate, Mike Gronstahl last week said the Senate does not plan to consider any collective bargaining legislation which would mean the House measure is dead.

State Senator Randy Feenstra of Hull was unable to attend the forum in Le Mars Saturday.

(LE MARS)--A study of Le Mars' needs to treat waste lists options to meet growth.

According to city administrator Scott Langel, Bolton and Menk is the consultant working on the wastewater study.

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As Langel explains, a preliminary report gives the city options about where the expansion should occur.

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Some City Council members  and city staff who serve on the Wastwater Committee are expected to take the consultant's report to the full Council within two weeks to a month.

(SIOUX CITY) He's asked questions for 50 years and now he's telling the stories.

Talk-show host Larry King will visit Sioux City's Orpheum Theatre May 19th. Powell Broadcasting's KSCJ and Mercy Cardiology are presenting King. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Mercy Foundation to provide cardiac screenings for the poor and underserved.

King recently ended a 25-year career with nightly interviews on C-N-N. In addition to the stories of his years of interviewing, those who attend will have an opportunity to ask their own questions of the broadcast veteran who is offering a humorous perspective to audiences.

Tickets for the Larry King presentation will be available beginning Saturday morning. (Photo courtesy Orpheum Theatre)

(SPENCER) A Paullina man who authorities say kept a rental car for months without paying for the continued use is charged with theft.

The Clay County Sheriff's Office arrested 28-year-old Kenneth Mullen Friday night.

According to written information from the sheriff's office, Mullen rented a car from Hertz Rent-a-Car last September, but didn't return the vehicle.

A sheriff's deputy saw the vehicle which had reported stolen from Hertz of Olive Branch, Mississippi and stopped the vehicle on Highway 71. Mullen was driving.

Mullen was arrested on a felony charge of theft in the second degree and taken to the Clay County Jail.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowa farmers angered by repeated releases of secretly filmed videos claiming to show mistreatment of farm animals are backing legislation that would make it illegal for activists to produce and distribute such images.

Legislative committees in Iowa have approved a bill that would prohibit such recordings and punish people who take agriculture jobs just to record animals' treatment. Proposed penalties include up to five years in prison.

Votes by the full House and Senate haven't been set, but experts say Iowa could become the first state to approve such restrictions. Florida is considering similar legislation.

Supporters say people who witness abuse should report it and work through proper channels.

Animal rights groups say that only through awareness created by publicity can the nation work to protect farm animals.

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) A magistrate has ordered a Mason City man to close a Facebook account and not make personal use of the Internet.

The Mason City Globe Gazette says 20-year-old Taylor Everett had pleaded guilty to contributing to the delinquency of a minor, a misdemeanor. He was given two years of probation, a $625 fine that was suspended, plus the Internet restrictions.

Prosecutors say Everett had suggested during a Facebook conversation with a 15-year-old girl that they take shower together.

Magistrate Patrick Byrne says in his sentencing order that Everett's rehabilitation depends upon Everett ``seeking out company in person rather than online, where he is less able to judge reality.''

Byrne says the girl gave a different age online.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) The former dean of a technical college campus in Iowa is expected to appear in federal court Monday to change his not-guilty plea on a charge of attempting to have sex with a 14-year-old girl he thought he met online.

Authorities say Terry Campie was the dean of the Cedar Rapids campus of the ITT Technical Institute when he was arrested last April 30 in Clinton.

Campie had driven from his home in Iowa City expecting to meet a 14-year-old girl he had been chatting with online. In reality, he had been speaking with an investigator posing as the girl and was arrested when he tried to meet her near a Wendy's restaurant.

Campie's case had been scheduled for trial next week at the federal courthouse in Davenport.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds says she favors a competency test before students graduate from high school in Iowa.

Reynolds talked about requiring a test during a news conference on Monday to announce details of an education summit for Iowa this summer. She says states like Massachusetts have such a test and it has been effective in improving student performance.

The summit will be headlined by Education Secretary Arne Duncan and will include education experts from Stanford University and Massachusetts. Reynolds says Gov. Terry Branstad will hold a series of meetings across the state in the weeks leading up to the conference in July.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds says earthquake damage to nuclear power plants in Japan shouldn't deter expansion of the industry in Iowa and elsewhere in the United States.

Reynolds says Monday the state should continue to look at all forms of alternative energy, including nuclear power.

Japan is trying desperately to stabilize nuclear reactors at risk of meltdown in the aftermath of last week's earthquake and tsunami.

Reynolds says technology has changed and attitudes are different and the country should continue to move forward with expansion of nuclear power options.

A bill in the Legislature would make it easier for energy companies to construct new nuclear power plants in Iowa. It outlines how state regulators should proceed with ratemaking principles should a utility move forward with a nuclear plan.

NEWTON, Iowa (AP) A lawyer and his wife plan to reward Newton High School students who pledge not to drive while distracted by cell phones.

Lawyer Corey Walker told The Des Moines Register that beyond law enforcement efforts, he wanted a way to train new young drivers not to text or talk on their cell phones while behind the wheels of their vehicles.

Walker and his wife, Beth Walker, will offer $25 iTunes gift cards and $100 college scholarships to Newton High School students who sign a pledge. They must promise not to use while cell phones while driving until they turn 18 and graduate.

A law passed last year banned people younger than 18 from using their cell phones while driving. Adults are also barred from texting while driving.

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Two of three deer died after being freed from the mud of a drained lake in west Omaha.

The deer were noticed Saturday afternoon at Zorinsky Lake.

Rescuers feared they, too, would get stuck in the muck. A hovercraft owner/operator from Council Bluffs, Iowa, volunteered his help after being notified about the problem.

Kevin Rutland took rescuers out over the mud Sunday. The deer first were tranquilized before being pulled out and taken to shore.

Two of them died, but the third is recovering in the care of a wildlife rescue group.

Zorinsky Lake became a muddy plain when it was emptied to combat zebra mussels. Officials hope exposure to the winter weather will kill off the mussels, an invasive species.

(CHARLES CITY, Iowa (AP) An Iowa school district is trying to raise money by auctioning a 105-year-old baseball card featuring alumnus Vive Lindaman.

Charles City school superintendent Andy Pattee told the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier that the 1906 card was put up for sale on eBay. The 10-day auction closes Thursday. As of Sunday, the card had 26 bids and was going for at least $152.50.

Lindaman graduated from the Charles City school system in 1895. He played major league baseball for the Boston Beaneaters and the Boston Doves, teams that evolved into the Atlanta Braves. Lindaman was a pitcher.

The card is currently owned by another Charles City alum, Bill Burge of St. Louis. He says a similar card auction last year raised $230.

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

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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