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KLEM News PM Update June 9, 2011


Three of the five council members are elected from specific geographic areas.

Former Council candidate and Park Board member Merlin Schipper describes people are more mobile today explaining they don't live in the same house and more people move in and out of the city.

Schipper suggested there could be more candidates without the ward system.

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Council members, including Delana Ihrke, indicated interest in further discussion.

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The ward discussion began when updating ward boundaries to reflect new Census population figures was before the Council. City staff is researching the option.

The Council this week heard no objections when changes in the Council Ward boundaries were set for the first consideration. One of the changes involves more residents near the golf course.

Council members indicated interest in bringing the ward issue up at a future date.

Downtown parking addition planned

(LE MARS)---Parking on the north end of the downtown business area in Le Mars will increase with an additional lot.

Side by Side, Incorporated is donating an area where a building was demolished east of Central Avenue Northeast.

City administrator Scott Langel says the city will begin the work as soon as the site preparation is ready, including work on the nearby Bamboo Village wall.

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The new paved parking lot will be north of the Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor and Museum slated to open downtown next week.

Spruce fungus damages trees

(LE MARS)--Orange and brown areas in Colorado Blue spruce trees could be a fungus.

District forester in Le Mars, Joe Schwartz, explains lavender or slightly purple needles in the fall are signs of a specific disease. At this time of year, Schwartz says the spruce trees with the fungus have a red-orange brown look to the needles.

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Cooper-based fungicides are used to prevent the fungus and/or treat the spruce.

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Schwartz says an older bordeaux mixture treatment option is being avoided because it needs to be reapplied when it rains.

Spruce can be treated by a professional or the tree owner who could use a hose-end sprayer.

As a rule of thumb, Schwartz says if 50 to 60 percent of the tree has lost its needles it might have reached the point of no return.

Soil affects the spruce which is not native to western Iowa.


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Schwartz works throughout western Iowa as an Iowa Department of Natural Resources District Forester. The Le Mars office number is 546-5161.

Iowa thunderstorms blamed for fire, other damage

NORTH LIBERTY, Iowa (AP) Thunderstorms that moved through eastern Iowa are being blamed for a house fire as well as hail and wind damage to cars, homes and trees.

In North Liberty, fire officials say a lightning strike likely started a house fire around 10:40 p.m. Wednesday. The resident made it out safely.

In Cedar Rapids, more than 5,800 customers lost power for a time, and high winds knocked over a semitrailer. Several roads were blocked by fallen trees and limbs.

In southern Black County, sheriff's deputies reported that a tornado damaged a farm field around 5:30 p.m. The tornado's presence hasn't been confirmed yet.

Quarter-sized hail was reported elsewhere in the county.

The National Weather Service says three-quarters of an inch of rain fell overnight in Des Moines.

Flooding forcing closure of Iowa I-29 stretch

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) The rising Missouri River soon will force closure of an Interstate 29 stretch north of Council Bluffs in western Iowa.

The Iowa Transportation Department says it will be closing I-29 from milepost 55 on the north edge of the city to the I-29 interchange with Interstate 680, about 12 miles away.

A detour will be set up taking traffic to the I-680-Interstate 80 interchange.

Also, I-680 west of I-29 will be closed, which will limit motorists trying to cross the river into Nebraska, north of Omaha. The Iowa department says interstate travelers between Iowa and Nebraska should use Interstate 80.

The closures are expected in the next 12 to 36 hours.

The Missouri River is expected to crest 5 to 7 feet above flood stage in Iowa and Nebraska next week, but the water will remain high until at least August.


Arraignment set for principal charged in porn case

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) An Iowa elementary school principal charged with receiving child pornography is expected to be arraigned in federal court.

Sageville Elementary School Principal Robert Burke is set to appear at the federal courthouse in Cedar Rapids on Friday morning. Burke will have the opportunity to enter a formal plea to an indictment charging him with one count of receiving child pornography.

Investigators arrested Burke last week after tracing images of child pornography to a computer at his Dubuque home. They say that Burke admitted to installing a hidden video camera at the school to capture images of boys using the bathroom.

Burke declined earlier this week to challenge his detention and is being held at the Linn County jail.

The Dubuque school board has started termination proceedings against Burke.


Iowa attacker's release stuns victim's dad

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) The father of a man who died in Cedar Rapids after being punched is stunned by the prison release of the man who hit his son.

Henry Rogers punched 35-year-old Dustin ``Dusty'' Davis last July. Davis fell and his head hit the pavement, rupturing a blood vessel. Davis died the next day.

Linn County Attorney Jerry Vander Sanden told The Gazette that his office filed the most serious charge it could.

In April, Rogers was sentenced to two years. Jail time already served and good-time credit got him out of prison Saturday.

Dusty Davis' dad says he thinks Rogers poses a threat to public safety.

Des Moines woman accused of stabbing at restaurant

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A 24-year-old woman is in custody after police say she stabbed another woman at a Des Moines restaurant.

Investigators say Relichia McSorely confronted 28-year-old Angela Dawson at the Jasmine Bowl restaurant Tuesday night.

Dawson was stabbed with a paring knife and was taken to Methodist Medical Center. She's expected to recover.

McSorely has a two-year-old child with Dawson's boyfriend. All three adults live together.

Polk County Jail records say McSorley remains in custody. Court records don't list the name of her attorney.

Southeast Iowa judge named to state appeals court

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A district judge from southeast Iowa has been named to the state court of appeals.

The office of Gov. Terry Branstad says he's appointed 59-year-old Michael Mullins, of Washington.

Mullins replaces Edward Mansfield, who has been appointed an Iowa Supreme Court justice.

Mullins has been serving in Iowa Judicial District 8A. He received his law degree from Drake University.

Iowa tightens video oversight after NCAA violation

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) The Iowa athletics department has strengthened procedures for reviewing promotional videos after the school committed a minor NCAA violation by showing football players going through summer workouts on a team website.

Associate Athletic Director Fred Mims said Thursday employees involved in posting the material on GoHawks.com last year were unaware that doing so would violate NCAA rules requiring summer weight-lifting and conditioning activities to be voluntary.

The rules prohibit teams from recording workouts for the purpose of telling players' coaches or teammates whether they participated. Iowa self-reported the violation last October after receiving an NCAA inquiry about it.

Mims said the athletics department has assigned a member of its compliance staff to review videos and other media presentations to make sure they comply with NCAA rules before they are launched.


Boone woman claims $1M Powerball ticket prize

BOONE, Iowa (AP) A Boone woman who won a $1 million Powerball prize has stepped forward to claim her winnings.

Mary Tillman bought the ticket at a Casey's on Story Street. Hers was one of two $1 million tickets sold for the April 30 Powerball drawing. The other winning ticket was bought in Ohio.

Tillman's ticket matched the first five numbers but missed the Powerball number, winning a $200,000 prize. But she had added the Power Play option, which multiplied the prize by five, reaching the $1 million total.

The winning numbers were: 6-13-15-32-41 and Powerball 3.

Tillman says she based her numbers on family ages and birthdays.

Tillman said Wednesday that she and her husband did some financial planning before contacting lottery officials.

(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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