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KLEM News PM Update April 20, 2011

They're making plans for a building to store snow removal equipment for the city's airport.

Council member Ken Nelson said if the bids for the building come in higher than reasonable the Council could discontinue.

The estimated cost is 250-thousand dollars.

A consultant for the city, Matt Ferrier of Bolton and Menk, Tuesday confirmed Council Member John Leonard's thoughts that the project cost was higher than an individual would pay for the same building.

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City Administrator Scott Langel says funds are expected for the project in 30-60 days.

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The Council unanimously agreed to accept bids for the airport snow removal equipment storage building May 16th. Federal funds are to finance 95 percent of the project.

LE MARS - A Le Mars Police Officer and his canine are first place team members from the United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) Narcotics Trials.

Le Mars Police Senior Patrol Officer Mark Reed and his canine, Pike, competed in Des Moines last week. There were 63 dogs at the competition.

Reed and his six-year-old German Shepherd finished in first place overall in narcotics detection as part of a team with three other officers. They included a deputy sheriff from Tama County and two deputies from Monona County.

LE MARS - A tax paid by Plymouth County residents and visitors on sales and services will help three of the county's fire departments.

An advisory group's recommendations for the use of 100-thousand dollars in Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) grants was approved unanimously Tuesday.

The Board of Supervisors action includes 10-thousand dollars for the Council on Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence (CSDV) Plymouth County Outreach and the City of Merrill to repair the recently acquired Kissinger School building roof.

Le Mars Fire Rescue Chief David Schipper used the public forum at the Supervisors' meeting to thank the advisory group and Supervisors for five-thousand-dollars. The funds will buy confined space rescue equipment to be used countywide.

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Schipper said firefighters would have more information available to the other departments later this month.

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The Oyens Fire Department received about 64-hundred dollars for equipment and tools while 22-hundred dollars was awarded to Hinton Fire-Rescue for pumper truck equipment. 

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) A 41-year-old Sioux City man has been accused of beating up his boss before the boss could fire him.

Court records say Joseph Sauce of Sioux City faces charges of willful injury and false imprisonment for the attack at an insurance office.

Police reports say Doug Inlay had planned to fire Sauce on March 11. But police say that on March 9, Sauce went into the office and beat and kicked Inlay, at one point dragging him into an office, locking the door and threatening to kill him.

Police say Inlay suffered a concussion, four chipped teeth and needed surgery on his injured nose.

Sauce is free on bond.

(Copyright 2011 by Associated Press. All rights reserved)

DES MOINES -  Former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack and her husband -- the current U.S. Ag Secretary -- are moving to Ames next month, setting up a likely general election showdown between Christie Vilsack, a Democrat, and Republican Congressman Steve King in the 2012 election.

Congressman King lives in the new fourth congressional district and by moving to Ames, Christie Vilsack will live there, too. She has formed an exploratory committee for a congressional race and issued a written statement. Christie Vilsack said "serving Iowa is both a privilege and a responsibility" and she wants to have a conversation with residents of the fourth district about "Iowa values."

Christie Vilsack said "input from fellow Iowans" will help her run a campaign "focused on collaboration and results" which she indicated would yield "a new way to do business in Washington." If she is successful, Vilsack would become the first woman in Iowa to be elected to Congress. (News report by Radio Iowa)

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) A University of Iowa professor who studies same-sex relationships was so upset by a mass email from a campus Republican group promoting ``Conservative Coming Out Week'' that she fired off a vulgarity aimed at all Republicans.

Ellen Lewin's response to the College Republicans' email has outraged the student group and at least one legislator.

Lewin later wrote back to explain she had just finished reading about ``fresh outrages committed by Republicans in government'' when she received the pitch. She acknowledged her language was inappropriate and apologized ``for any affront to anyone's delicate sensibilities.''

But she also complained that the GOP email used the ``coming out'' language given their disdain for gay rights, and mocked Wisconsin labor protesters and animal rights.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) The University of Iowa is investigating three separate incidents in which black students were allegedly called racial slurs in and around Hillcrest Residence Hall.

In an e-mail to Hillcrest residents, an administrator says the reported incidents are disturbing and said the university considers such behavior ``absolutely unacceptable.''

He says the university is working to identify the perpetrators, who could be subject to sanctions under the Code of Student Life and possible criminal charges.

Rocklin told the residents he needs their help creating an environment that fosters tolerance toward students of all backgrounds.

A UI spokesman says the incidents all occurred over the weekend but ``appear to be isolated in nature.''

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) A Cedar Rapids man remains held on $5,500 bond after police say he tried to throw his 6-month-old daughter against a wall.

The Gazette is reporting that 25-five-year-old Walter Chirino-Guardado was arrested Sunday and charged with child endangerment and assault causing serious injury.

Police say he was arrested after he punched his live-in girlfriend and then picked up their 6-month-old daughter and threw her across the room. They say the girlfriend was able to catch the child before she hit the wall.

Police say Chirino-Guardado continued to hit his girlfriend until others at the residence were able to separate the two.

A telephone message left Wednesday for his attorney was not immediately returned.

Authorities say Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials also filed an order to keep him in jail.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A Polk County man convicted of sexually assaulting a woman who died before she could testify against him has been given three life terms plus 25 years in prison.

The Des Moines Register says 37-year-old Jack Hays was convicted in February of three counts of sexual abuse and one of burglary. He was sentenced on Tuesday.

Hayes is a convicted sex offender who was accused of breaking into the Des Moines home of 43-year-old Frances Brazzle and sexually assaulting her in September 2009.

Brazzle went public with the attack. She was expected to testify, but she died in February 2010.

Her husband found her unresponsive when he returned from a shopping trip. Police said she suffered from several health issues, and there were no obvious signs of a crime or attempted suicide.

BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) A fire that damaged a church in Burlington has been ruled arson.

Fire caused about $100,000 damage to Union Baptist Church early Saturday. Fire and smoke was seen coming from the building when fire crews arrived.

The Hawk Eye newspaper reported Tuesday that federal, state and local authorities are participating in the investigation. Awards totaling $3,500 are being offered for information that leads to an arrest in the case.

WAVERLY, Iowa (AP) A funeral home says a service for a 21-year-old Shell Rock soldier who was killed by a bomb blast in Afghanistan will be held at Waverly-Shell Rock High School in Waverly.

The Kaiser-Corson Funeral Home says a full military service will be held Saturday morning for Spc. Don Nichols. A visitation is scheduled for Friday at the mortuary.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier says Nichols' body is being flown in Waterloo airport on Thursday and will be escorted to Waverly by Patriot Guard and AMVETS motorcycle riders.

Nichols died April 13 when the vehicle he was in was struck by a roadside bomb in Laghman Province. The blast wounded Spc. Timothy Gourd, of Prescott.

Both were assigned to the Iowa Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry in Waterloo.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Polk County supervisors have rejected a plan that would have given elected officials up to $30,000 in severance pay when they left office.

The Des Moines Register says the board voted 5-0 against the idea on Tuesday. The plan was drafted by the Polk County Compensation Board, which recommended giving elected officials with at least eight years of service one week of pay for every year of service.

The plan would have been the only known severance package for elected officials in Iowa.

Supporters say it would have provided deferred compensation to officials whose pay has been flat and would have helped them buy health insurance after they left office. Critics say it would have been poor public policy.

Supervisor Robert Brownell says the proposal ``was crazy from day one.''

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

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.

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