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KLEM News PM Update June 15, 2011

Le Mars businessman John Grosenheider is working with businessmen in the Netherlands and India to locate a renewable fuels plant and an international office for the business.

Grosenheider says the technology started in the United States with a pilot project done with the Environmental Protection Agency in Colorado.

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Grosenheider's Netherlands partner has traveled to other countries at their invitation because of the track record and control of the technology he has.

Le Mars is one location being considered for the project and office.

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Grosenheider's interest in the renewable fuels industry was sparked by a suggestion to use the financial experience from housing projects to get into the renewable energy business. He attended conferences and began making connections with his international associates.

C-38 paving project begins Thursday

(LE MARS)--A paving project will close a portion of a Plymouth County route to Cherokee County beginning tomorrow (Thursday).

The closing on County Road C-38 is from the intersection C-38 and Highway 140 to the Plymouth-Cherokee County line.

Engineer Tom Rohe provided notice of the 10-mile road closing due to paving of the county road. Only local traffic will be allowed on the roadway beginning at 10 tomorrow (Thursday) morning and continuing through the end of August.

The detour will be from the intersection of C-38 and County Road K-49 south to County Road C-44 and east to County Road L-36.

The actual re-opening date will depend on weather conditions and will be announced through the Engineer.

Turbine turn snarls travel

(LE MARS)--A soft shoulder caused a traffic snarl on Highway Three at the interchange with Highway 75 on Le Mars' west side this morning.

Sergeant Dave Eral of the Iowa State Patrol reports traffic on Highway Three was detoured onto the north and southbound exits to Highway 75

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The oversize load was a wind turbine. The area of Highway Three was blocked for about two hours starting about seven this morning.

 Dialysis Services benefits from "casual days"

(LE MARS)--Associates at a Le Mars business are showing their support for a new medical service in Le Mars. Great Southern Bank's Caring and Sharing donation in Le Mars was to the Le Mars Area Dialysis Service.

Twice a month, Great Southern Bank sets days where associates "pay" to dress casually. The days are part of Great Southern Bank's "Caring and Sharing" program that encourages associates to become more involved in their communities.

The casual dress program raised 276 dollars for Le Mars Area Dialysis Services. A "test" patient is receiving services through the new downtown Le Mars health care service.

If an organization or individual would like to donate to Le Mars Area Dialysis Services, they are asked to contact board members Randy Reardon, James George, Steve Ohm, Karen Dreckman, Kirk Klohs or Mike Donlin.

Highway 60 travel affected by road work

(SIOUX CITY)--Summer road work will change the number of northbound lanes of Highway 60 in Plymouth and Sioux Counties.

Dean Herbst of the Iowa Department of Transportation says the road construction on Highway 60 will begin Thursday and be completed by the end of September, weather permitting.

The northbound highway area affected begins three miles north of Le Mars at Plymouth County road C-16 and continues north to near Sheldon at the intersection of Sioux County Road L-26 and Highway 60.

Investigators say post office package was pot

(KINGSLEY)-A suspicious package investigation led to the arrest of a Cherokee woman.

The Plymouth County Sheriff's Office assisted the United States Postal Inspector's office after information was received about a package at the Kingsley Post office.

According to information released Tuesday, investigators determined the package contained a controlled substance.

Tanya Jane Booth of Cherokee was charged with possession of marijuana and taken to the Plymouth County Jail. Booth is free on bond and has a June 27th preliminary hearing.

Missouri River floodwaters approach Hamburg, Iowa

HAMBURG, Iowa (AP) Missouri River floodwaters are now less than 2 miles away from the town of Hamburg in southwest Iowa.

Officials have been working to improve a temporary levee around the town to hold back the water rushing out of a failed levee 5 miles south of Hamburg.

The floodwaters are expected to reach Hamburg sometime later today.

The water reached the western edge of Interstate 29 Wednesday morning, forcing the closure of the southbound on-ramp and covering several hundred feet of Iowa Highway 333 west of the interstate.

The Army Corps of Engineers hopes the temporary levee built over the past two weeks will keep Hamburg dry. If the levee fails, officials predict parts of the town could be covered by as much as 10 feet of water for months.

Flooding along I-29 complicates travel in Iowa

NEBRASKA CITY, Neb. (AP) The bloated Missouri River is complicating travel along Interstate 29 in Iowa.

State officials have already closed a section of I-29 north of Council Bluffs, and they are preparing to close another stretch of the interstate near Hamburg in southwest Iowa because of floodwaters encroaching on the highway.

Gary and Veronica Andrews of Ocala, Fla., were on a trip to Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming when they spotted what appeared to be a giant lake pressing up against I-29.

The couple pulled off the interstate about 9 miles north of Hamburg at Nebraska City for a restroom break. But every gas station, restaurant and motel along the interstate was closed and surrounded by sandbags and dirt levees.

Gary Andrews says the stop was quite an experience.

Flooding near Hamburg forces I-29 off-ramp closure

HAMBURG, Iowa (AP) Iowa officials have delayed the closure of a stretch of Interstate 29 in southwest Iowa.

The Iowa Department of Transportation said in a news release Wednesday that the portion south of Exit 10 could close at any moment. The department says the planned closure was delayed because the Missouri River floodwater rise has slowed. The department says it won't issue a warning when the roadway does close. Motorists are urged to avoid the area.

Exit 10 is where Iowa Highway 2 runs west across the river to Nebraska. The planned closure runs south to U.S. Highway 136 in Rock Port, Mo., a distance of about 30 miles.

The department says the southbound I-29 off-ramp at Exit 1 is closed as well as Iowa Highway 333 from I-29 to Hamburg.

Flash flood warnings posted for southeast Iowa

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) The National Weather Service says several roads in southeast Iowa are covered with rain runoff from overnight storms.

The service says some Ottumwa city streets that had been closed by the runoff were beginning to empty on Wednesday morning. Harrows Creek had left its banks, and some cars were stranded by floodwaters.

In Keokuk County's What Cheer, water from Coal Creek had flooded onto Iowa Highway 21.

Several roads in Lee and Van Buren counties are impassable.

Flash flood warnings remain in effect for several southeast Iowa counties.

Man in sexting case quits as Urbandale coach

URBANDALE, Iowa (AP) An assistant girls' track coach in Urbandale who's accused of sending sexually explicit messages to a teenage girl has resigned.

Thirty-three-year-old Chad Ziesman has been charged with sexual exploitation of a minor. He's pleaded not guilty.

The Des Moines Register is reporting that Ziesman resigned his post at Urbandale Middle School and that the school board accepted the resignation on Monday, without comment.

Ziesman also was a substitute teacher.

The Urbandale Police Department says a 14-year-old-girl told school officials she received inappropriate text and e-mail messages from Ziesman.

He's due back in court on July 15.

Hearing set for former slaughterhouse manager

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A hearing seeking a new trial for a former Iowa kosher slaughterhouse executive convicted of financial fraud is set for Wednesday before the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis.

Former Agriprocessors Inc. manager Sholom Rubashkin was convicted of financial fraud in 2009 and sentenced to 27 years in prison. His arrest followed an immigration raid at the company's Postville plant in 2008.

Rubashkin's attorneys sought a new trial claiming Chief U.S. District Court Judge Linda Reade, who presided over Rubashkin's trial, could not be impartial and should have recused herself because she participated in the planning of the raid.

Reade rejected the request and Rubashkin's attorneys appealed to the federal court.

Cedar Rapids rejects charter school proposal

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) The Cedar Rapids school board has rejected a request to establish a charter school in the district.

The school board decided Monday night it was not in a position to collaborate on such a project.

Cedar Rapids Superintendent Dave Benson says in The Gazette that the district must have policies and regulations in place before considering a charter school, which provides new and innovative curriculum for students. He says another factor is declining enrollment.

Gretchen Price is the leader of the ``Downtown School'' proposal. She tells KGAN-TV that the group and the district want the same thing for students and that a charter school is just a different path to the same goals. She hopes to gather enough community support to get the board to reconsider.

Polk County board OKs Prairie Meadows lease

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) A nearly eight-year lease with Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino will mean about $26 million in annual revenue for Polk County for the next three years and possibly more after that.

The Board of Supervisors approved the seven year, seven-month lease on Tuesday.

Polk County owns the land. The racetrack-casino is operated by a nonprofit board.

The old contract had expired on Dec. 31.

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

Submit your news release, photos, 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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