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KLEM News Update April 22, 2011

Timothy Ruhland of Remsen is a soldier in the 113th Cavalry. He and many other Le Mars area soldiers are in Afghanistan this weekend, away from their families, friends and churches where they normally worship.

Tim's mother Tammy said that because he's away for Easter, that busy bunny will just have to pay a visit to Afghanistan.

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She added...

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Tammy talks to Tim on the phone and through Skype every couple of weeks. She said that as things are heating up in Afghanistan, Tim's missions are being affected.

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Recently Tim mentioned that he's looking forward to coming home.

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A July return is expected for the 113th.

On a fun side note, Tim was able to surprise his mom and other family members on Christmas Eve by showing up on leave. Tammy hopes the Easter Bunny could make him appear again this weekend, but she's guessing it's not in the cards. (News report by Angela Drake of KLEM)

DES MOINES - Projects to create jobs in northwest Iowa were awarded state support Thursday in Des Moines. 

I-M-L Containers Iowa plans to expand its Le Mars plastics manufacturing facility. The more than 46-thousand square foot expansion would be used for production and warehouse areas.

According to the Iowa Department of Economic Development, additional injection molding machines would be purchased to increase production capacity. The proposed project is expected to create 29 new jobs, one of which is supported with state incentives.

The Economic Development Board Thursday also awarded one-half million dollars in direct financial assistance and additional tax incentives to Sara Lee Foods at Storm Lake. A turkey processing plan may be expanded and gizzard harvesting could be added.

R and D Industries in Milford, doing business as Thinix, was awarded 50-thousand dollars. The funds are to assist the company in its efforts to market software for a Windows-based tablet P-C.

 LE MARS - An Alabama Republican who may consider a Presidential bid talked of taxes, the nation's borders and courts in Le Mars Thursday.

Roy Moore, a former Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. said taxes need to be cut. Moore explained that would stimulate the economy and stimulate businesses which would be able to hire people who would pay taxes.

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Asked about gas prices, Moore said that needed to be monitored and looked at very carefully. But in the long run, Moore told KLEM News the United States need to explore other alternatives to its energy sources.


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Moore said he's a man who stands up for what he believes and has proven that by what he's done in the past. As an example he cited his stand on the Ten Commandments. Moore was removed as a judge for failing to agree to remove the Ten Commandments from an Alabama Courthouse.

LE MARS - Plymouth County Jurors do not need to report on Tuesday, April 26th. Jurors who were asked to serve in the month of April have completed their service.

SIBLEY -  A Holy Week tradition in Sibley brings together volunteers for everything from meals to the roles on stage. 

Gretchen Bartelson of Sibley directs the  Osceola County Ministerial Association's Good Friday Passion Play.

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With three afternoon and evening performances, about 200 volunteers prepare meals for the performers and crew, usher, perform or are behind the scenes of the play. She's emphasizing the number and importance of the volunteers this year.

Bartelson explains many in the Sibley area return year after year to be part of the Good Friday Passion Play,  even growing into new roles.

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Bartelson is expecting audiences for the three performances this Good Friday at Sibley-Ocheydan High School to include first timers.  But there are some who'll return for their 27th year in a row. 

Bartelson acknowledges the powerful impact of the crucifixion portrayal but she's moved by another scene as well. 

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The director personally hopes that everyone who comes to the play goes away knowing more about what God has done for His people, the cost that it took, and what it means for them in the their daily lives-that they live as people who have been forgiven.

The KLEM business office is closed today for the Powell Broadcasting holiday and will reopen Monday, April 25th at 8 am. Payments for Radio Auction items may be made Monday. Messages for staff may be left on the answering machine, 546. 4121.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Gov. Terry Branstad has signed into law a measure that funds mental health, indigent defense and prison spending programs. But the Governor also vetoed a tax cut pushed by Democrats.

The Republican governor signed the $65.8 million measure, providing money for programs he argued were short of funding. He also approved a measure pushed by Republicans that calls for the first $60 million in any budget surplus to be used for tax cuts.

A separate section of the measure pushed by Democrats would have spent $141 million over two years on tax cuts they say would benefit businesses and working families. Branstad rejected it saying that should be part of comprehensive tax reform.

JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is coming to the defense of Iowa Supreme Court Justice David Wiggins.

Asked about Wiggins on Thursday during a taping of the Iowa Public Television program, ``Iowa Press,'' Vilsack called Wiggins a tough questioner. He says those are qualities needed in a justice.

Speaking last week on ``Iowa Press,'' Gov. Terry Branstad predicted Wiggins could face a tough retention election next year, in part because of his aggressive questioning of Supreme Court applicants. Wiggins serves on the panel that recommends nominees to the governor.

Vilsack says he was surprised that Branstad criticized Wiggins, saying it's important to retain a separation between the governor's office and the Judicial Branch. Vilsack appointed Wiggins to the bench when he was Governor.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) More than $215 million in Iowa public employee retirement funds have been transferred to the state as part of the recovery of funds that were frozen in an investment fraud case in New York.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller announced the transfer of the funds Thursday.

The money was part of the Iowa Public Employee Retirement System investment in Westridge Capital Management in 2007 and 2008. Two of the investment group's managers were indicted in 2009.

IPERS terminated its agreement with Westridge Capital in 2009. The $215 million recovered for Iowa is about 85 percent of the state's total investment in Westridge Capital.

Officials say the state's investment amounted to 2 percent of fund's portfolio, which totaled $18 billion in 2009.

AMES, Iowa (AP) The Story County Sheriff's Office says a jailer is under investigation.

The Tribune in Ames reports that a sealed search warrant filed Thursday indicates the detention officer at the Story County Jail is being investigated for sexual misconduct with an inmate. No charges have been filed.

Sheriff's Capt. Barry Thomas confirmed to the newspaper that the criminal investigation was taking place. He says the jailer is on administrative leave.

A judicial order put the search warrant under seal for 60 days.

Thomas says the Sheriff's Office plans to provide more information next week.

STRAWBERRY POINT, Iowa (AP) An Arlington teenager has been injured after he shot himself in the foot while shooting at sparrows in eastern Iowa.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says 18-year-old Austin Hawkins suffered a broken foot after the 22-caliber rifle he was carrying went off when he slipped on mud. The accident happened Thursday at his grandfather's farm near Strawberry Point in Clayton County.

The DNR says Hawkins was driven by a parent to an area hospital and was later transferred to a hospital in Waterloo where he is being treated.

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) A Waterloo man accused of cutting his infant son in 2009 has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier says 34-year-old Jamie Lockhart was sentenced in Black Hawk County District Court on Wednesday. He entered an Alford plea to charges of willful injury and child endangerment causing serious injury. He was sentenced to two 10-year sentences, to be served consecutively.

Under an Alford plea, he didn't admit guilt but agreed that evidence likely existed for a conviction.

Lockhart was accused of cutting his son's abdomen with a kitchen knife about a week after birth. A judge put Lockhart's case on hold because of concerns about his mental competency to stand trial.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) The Iowa Department of Human Services is warning Ottumwa residents to be wary of people posing as social workers who are knocking on doors.

Spokesman Roger Munns says the agency told Ottumwa police on Thursday that three residents within the last several days have allowed impostors into their homes after they identified themselves as department workers.

Munns says the men left after residents answered questions about their families. The residents later called the agency because the questions and demeanor raised doubt.

Officials say department social workers who asked to interview people are required to display a state-issued ID badge. Workers won't enter a home without permission unless there's an emergency, in which case they will be accompanied by police.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) The superintendent of the Des Moines school district is a finalist for a similar post in Boulder, Colorado.

The Des Moines Register says Boulder Valley school board members announced Nancy Sebring and two others finalists on Thursday. Sebring will be interviewed on Monday.

The 56-year-old Sebring came to Des Moines in 2006 from Castle Rock, Colorado where she was deputy superintendent of the Douglas County school district.

Des Moines school board members say in a statement that they will try to keep Sebring in Iowa's largest district, which has about 32,000 students.

(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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