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KLEM News AM Update, July 13, 2011

Eckerd is a national non-profit that will have two offices in Spencer and Sioux City employing 24 full and part-time staff.  Much of the work will be done in field, working directly with families in their homes.  Eckerd will work with DHS to make sure children are being cared for within their families or in out-of-home placement situations.  The expected outcomes include: reducing the occurences of abuse, increasing family's parenting and coping skills, reduction of child re-entry in to the welfare system and decreasing the number of interactions with the governmental human services entity.

(LE MARS) Plans for a Plymouth County Fair museum will be on the agenda of the Plymouth County Fair Board this Thursday night during an 8 o'clock meeting in Century Hall of the fairgrounds.

The three museums in the county -- Akron Area Museum, Plymouth County Historical Museum, and Remsen Museum -- will have representatives at the board meeting to present the idea of a Fair Museum.

A group of fair supporters calling themselves the Cherry Club are promoting the idea of moving the 1888 farmhouse of Cherry Cliff to the fairgrounds to use as headquarters for a Fair Museum. Cherry, a longtime supporter of the Plymouth County Fair, died May 24.

The owners of her farmhouse, Roy and Mary Sitzmann, have said they are willing to give the house to the fair. The house, located in Union Township, is approximately 14 miles southeast of Le Mars.

The Cherry Club has pledged to raise money for the moving of the house and its anchoring on the fairgrounds, expected to cost up to $10,000. The group is asking the fair board to allow the Cherry Club to raise money for the project during the fair and then develop the house for the 2012 fair.

(LE MARS) -- The story of Noah and the Ark will brought to life through music with the Postal Playhouses Production of "Two by Two." Ticket sales begin today (Wednesday) for the musical that takes place Friday, July 22nd through Sunday, July 24th and Wednesday, July 27th through Sunday, July 31st.

Ryan Becker will be directing the show.  Becker is a first time director but not new to the stage as he has been in multiple musical productions with the Le Mars Community Theater.  He says the show is a fun representation of the Noah's Ark story that focuses on family dynamic and relationships...because after all, Noah and his wife Ester know that everyone has to get on the ark "two by two."

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And the matchmaking begins for Noah's youngest son.  A lot of the themes of the show are serious, but Becker says the show is comedic overall with over the top music. Tim Pick is playing the role of Noah, Margaret Britton takes the role of his wife, Esther. Their three sons Shem, Ham and Japheth are played by Scott Parry, Sam Schroeder, and Blair Remmers, respectively. Mary Pitts plays Shem's wife Leah, McKenna Murphy is cast as Ham's wife Rachel, and Tara Goplin plays Goldie. Evening performances are at 7:30 pm starting Friday, July 22nd.  Sunday matinees are at 2:00 pm.  Box Office hours Monday through Friday 11:00-2:00, (712) 546-5788.

LeMars) - - The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors approved a measure that sets up new districts and precincts for the upcoming 2012 election. The plan was needed as a result of the latest census data showing an increase of people living in Plymouth County.

Plymouth County Auditor Stacey Feldman explains why the need for the new districts and voting precincts.

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The county will still have five districts, but under the new plan LeMars will be divided into two separate districts.  District 1 consists of the southern portion of LeMars, while District 2 will include the northern part of LeMars along with the north east part of America township.

District 3 includes the townships of Meadow, Remsen, Henry, Garfield, Fredonia, Marion, Union, and Elkhorn with the communities of Remsen, Kingsley, and Oyens.

The city of Hinton along with the townships including Hancock, Perry, Hungerford, Lincoln, Sioux, Liberty, Stanton, and part of Plymouth and America township would make up District 4.

District 5 will include Westfield, Portland, Preston, Johnson, Grant, Washington, Elgin and part of Plymouth and American townships with the cities of Westfield, Akron, Craig, Seney, Brunsville, Merrill and Struble.

The populations are evenly distributed with District 1 with 4,998...District 2 with a population base of 4,996...District 3 with 5,014 people...District 4 with 4,980...and District 5 representing 4,998 people.

Under the proposal, two current supervisors would reside within the same district.  Feldman explains the rules if both want to seek re-election.

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The Supervisors have set August 2nd at 10:00 a.m. as the date for a public hearing on the new district proposal.


APNewsBreak: Romney rejects gay marriage pledge

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's campaign says he will not sign a conservative Iowa Christian group's far-reaching pledge opposing gay marriage, making him the first Republican presidential candidate to reject it.

Andrea Saul told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Romney ``strongly supports traditional marriage,'' but that the oath circulated last week by The Family Leader ``contained references and provisions that were undignified and inappropriate for a presidential campaign.''

An introduction to the 14-point pledge initially stated that African American children were more likely to be raised in two-parent households when they were born into slavery than they are today. But the group struck that language and apologized after black ministers complained.

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum have signed the pledge.

Ex-principal charged with producing child porn

An Iowa elementary school principal who allegedly placed a video camera in a boys' bathroom has been charged with producing child pornography.

Former Sageville Elementary School Principal Robert Burke was indicted on one count of receiving child pornography following his arrest last month. On Tuesday, federal prosecutors released a new indictment charging Burke with producing, distributing, receiving and possessing child pornography. He is expected to be arraigned on Wednesday.

The indictment says that between January and June, Burke produced visual depictions of minors' genitals without their knowledge, distributed child pornography on the Internet that he had received online, and possessed 4 hard drives containing child pornography.

Burke is jailed pending trial, and his attorney did not return a phone message. The school board in Dubuque fired Burke last month.

Branstad cuts commissioner's salary

(Information in the following story is from: The Des Moines Register, )

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Gov. Terry Branstad has cut the salary of the state's Worker Compensation Commissioner by $36,000 after he refused the governor's request to resign.

Chris Godfrey was appointed to a six-year term in 2006 by then-Gov. Tom Vilsack. Branstad asked for the resignations of many top officials soon after his election win against former Gov. Chet Culver in November. Godfrey refused.

The Des Moines Register says Branstad's administration on Monday again asked Godfrey to resign. When he refused, officials told him they were dropping his annual salary from $109,000 to $73,000, the minimum for his pay grade.

The governor has the power to appoint dozens of top positions, and there's generally a turnover with a new administration.

Godfrey told The Register that he has no plans to resign.

Ceremonies set for returning Iowa soldiers

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Homecoming ceremonies will be held this week for three Iowa Army National Guard units mobilized as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Separate ceremonies will be held Thursday in Cedar Rapids, Boone and Johnston for roughly 185 returning soldiers.

The soldiers coming back to Iowa are part of the approximately 2,900 members of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division deployed to Afghanistan.

Those units arrived in Afghanistan in November after spending roughly three months at Camp Shelby in Mississippi for additional training and preparation.

Trial delayed in Ottumwa bomb threat case

(Information in the following story is from: The Ottumwa Courier, )

OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) The trial of an 18-year-old accused of threatening to blow up Ottumwa High School has been delayed until this fall.

Derick Hendrickson is suspected of posting threats on his Facebook page in April. Police say he make two posts threatening the school and students.

Hendrickson is charged with harassment and threatening to place an incendiary device or substance.

The Ottumwa Courier says Tuesday that his trial in Wapello (WAHP'-uh-lo) County District Court has been postponed from July 25 to Oct. 10.

Regents select Iowa Farm Bureau head as new leader

Iowa Farm Bureau President Craig Lang will serve as president of the Iowa Board of Regents under a leadership shakeup orchestrated by Republican Gov. Terry Branstad.

The regents voted 7-0 on Tuesday to elect Lang, a dairy farmer from Brooklyn, Iowa, as president of the nine-member board. Agribusiness leader Bruce Rastetter, the top donor to Branstad's re-election campaign last year, was selected for president pro tem.

The votes came one day after President David Miles and President Pro Tem Jack Evans announced they were giving up their leadership roles at Branstad's request. They had led the board that governs Iowa's public universities for roughly 3 .5 years.

Branstad spokesman Tim Albrecht says Lang was the governor's choice to lead the board and he'll be ``a stronger leader'' than Miles.

Tests negative for chronic wasting disease in Iowa

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) State officials say test results are negative for chronic wasting disease in Iowa's deer herd.

The Department of Natural Resources says Tuesday that tissue samples collected from more than 4,700 deer in 2010 and this year were all negative for the neurological disease that can be fatal to deer. The agency says most of the samples were collected during last fall's hunting season in seven counties in northeast Iowa, near outbreaks in Wisconsin and Illinois. The DNR also focused on south central Iowa, near an area where a captive deer tested positive in Missouri.

Since 2003, Iowa has tested over 38,000 wild deer and more than 1,300 captive deer and elk. All tests have been negative.

Trial delayed in deadly punch in Sioux City

(Information in the following story is from: KTIV-TV, )

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) The trial of a man accused in a deadly fight in Sioux City has been delayed.

Bradley Gregg, of Sioux City, is charged with involuntary manslaughter and assault. He's accused of punching Joseph McDonald, of Ida Grove, outside a bar in October 2010. McDonald was knocked out and later died.

KTIV-TV in Sioux City says jury selection in Gregg's trial was to begin on Tuesday in Woodbury County District Court, but was reset until Sept. 6. Judge Jeffrey Neary says there are a number of reasons for the delay, including a conflict with his schedule for the next two weeks.

Council Bluffs waives some permit fees

(Information in the following story is from: The Daily Nonpareil, )

COUNCIL BLUFF, Iowa (AP) Council Bluffs is giving some potential flood victims a break on some permit and inspection fees.

To help ease cleanup costs, the City Council on Monday waived the fees for the re-installation of service-related equipment. According to The Daily Nonpareil, residents are removing furnaces, air conditions, water heaters and other equipment for fear of water damage from flooding on the Missouri River.

Under normal circumstances, if a resident removes and replaces any of those items, there's a permit fee to cover the cost of a city inspector who determines if the replacement was installed to city code.

Under the change, a permit and an inspection are still needed, but the city is waiving the fee until further notice.

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

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