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Tuesday News, April 9

Merrill Fire Department Responds To Grass Fire

(Merrill) -- The Merrill Fire Department was called yesterday shortly after 6:00 p.m. to fight a grass fire.  That grass fire was reported at 23104 Iris Avenue.  Fire officials were able to extinguish the fire within a half hour.

Supervisors To Hear L.O.S.T. Advisory Board's Recommendations

(Le Mars) --Plymouth County Supervisors have a long agenda when they meet this morning.  They will discuss for approval the financing option for funding for the projects in the Plymouth County Ethanol Project, as well as hear a report from Mary Reynolds, chair person for the Local Option Sales Tax Advisory Board as Reynolds presents the county local option sales tax grant allocation for the fiscal year 2013-2014.   The supervisors will have a report from Jan Henryson from the Center of Financial Education.  County Engineer Tom Rohe will review a bridge repair contract, as well as present a report for intended road construction and bridge repairs for the next five years.  The county supervisors will also
hear from Plymouth county Recorder, Jolynn Goodchild as she presents the Recorder's quarterly report.


Chamber of Commerce To Offer "Cash Mobs"

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce is planning on holding Cash Mobs again this year. The first Cash Mob will be held on Thursday, April 25 in Le Mars. The first targeted businesses will be current Chamber members, retail businesses located downtown.  The Le Mars Chamber held four “Cash Mobs,” in 2012. Similar to flash mobs, Cash Mobs organize customers to spend money at locally owned businesses to help support the independent retailer.
Everyone is invited to join in the fun. Meet in front of the Le Mars Chamber of Commerce, 50 Central Ave SE, at 12:15pm Thursday, April 25. Le Mars Mayor Dick Kirchoff will draw one retail store name out of the qualified downtown businesses, and we’ll mob that store.
Each person participating in the mob guarantees to spend $20 in the selected store.
Have some fun, meet new people and help support downtown retail businesses.


Le Mars Community School District To Hold Foundation Banquet

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Community Board of Education and the Le Mars Community School District Foundation are co-sponsoring the annual foundation banquet scheduled for Tuesday evening at the Le Mars Convention Center.  The event will be held at the Lower Level beginning at 6:30 p.m.  The banquet will honor this year's "Teacher of the Year", Jayne Willer, a Kindergarten Teacher at the Kluckholn Elementary School.  Recognition of the school district's employees of the month, district employees with 25 years of service, and the top five percent of the senior class.  New this year will be the presentation of the first "Distinguished Alumni" award.

State Senate Rejects Regent Nominees

(Des Moines) -- Governor Terry Branstad says he is deeply disappointed with the State Senate for not confirming two of his nominees to the Board of Regents.  Craig Lang and Robert Cramer fell four votes short of being on the board that oversees the state universities.  Branstad says he was disappointed that the two individuals were "treated in such a shabby manner."  State Senator Bill Anderson commented on the situation on Saturday during a legislative forum held in Le Mars.  He says he supported the nominees, and places the blame on political games.
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Senate Appropriations To Review Mental Health Funding Bill

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa Senate panel is set to review a bill that funds the state's new regionalized mental health care system.
The Senate Appropriations Committee will discuss the bill Tuesday morning. The measure would provide more than $29 million in state funding over the next two fiscal years for counties to
administer mental health services not covered by Medicaid. If approved by the committee, the bill will move to the Senate floor.
It's the next step in funding a plan to coordinate mental health care on a region-based system.
The bill also creates a board to develop strategies to improve children's health in the state called the Children's Cabinet. It would be comprised of representatives from the state Department of
Human Services, lawmakers and community members.


House Approves Tax Credit For Donations To Private Schools

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa House has approved more tax breaks for individuals and companies that donate to scholarships for low-income, private school students.
The House approved the measure 96 to 2 on Monday, sending it to the Senate.
The measure would encourage businesses, trusts and other organizations to donate in exchange for a tax break. It also increases the tax break cap from its current level of $8.5 million
to $12 million.
Under current law, low-income, private K through 12 students can apply for a school tuition scholarship funded by cash donations from individuals. Bill sponsor Representative Chris Hagenow of
Windsor Heights says offering this tax incentive to companies will fund more scholarships.
The Iowa Department of Revenue reports 9,209 students received a scholarship under the program in the 2011-2012 school year.


Commission To Review Security Will Meet In Ames

AMES, Iowa (AP) - A commission established by Congress to review the security implications of trade with China will hold a hearing at Iowa State University in Ames later this month.
The U.S.-China Economic Security Review Commission each year holds a field hearing outside Washington. This year commissioners have chosen Iowa State as the location. The group will meet on
April 25 at Curtiss Hall Auditorium.
The commission, created by Congress in 2000, monitors and investigates trade with China. It reports annually to Congress, making recommendations for legislative and administrative action when necessary.
Panel discussion topics will include food safety, public health, and intellectual property.
Representatives from the USDA, American Meat Institute, Food and Water Watch, Farm Bureau Federation, the National Cotton Council of America and the U.S. Grains Council are among those invited.

Officials To Discuss Broadband Options

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa officials are gathering in Des Moines to talk about expanding local broadband around the state.
A one-day broadband summit will be held Tuesday at the Iowa State Historical Society. It's being co-hosted by Connect Iowa and the Iowa Economic Development Authority.
State, county and other leaders are set to talk about local engagement in expanding broadband. They also will talk about how technology impacts the state's economic future.
American Rural founder and CEO Diane Smith is scheduled to give the keynote address. Iowa Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham also will speak on the state's current economic
The summit will feature panels and other presentations.


School Bus Accident Near Tama

TAMA, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say two students and a driver were injured when the school bus they were in rolled off a rural road in east-central Iowa.
The South Tama County Community School District bus was taking students to school Monday morning when the accident occurred northeast of Tama.
Officials say the gravel road was soft from recent rain and may have contributed to the accident. The bus rolled onto its side as it slid off the elevated roadway.
The two students and the bus driver were treated at the scene and released.


Wind Turbine Loses Blade

ADAIR, Iowa (AP) - Authorities in western Iowa are investigating how a wind turbine blade that's the size of a football field snapped off.
A technician for the Eclipse Wind Farm in Adair discovered the blade in a field Friday morning. Siemens Energy, the turbine manufacturer, is investigating the accident.
Iowa Wind Energy Association President Kathleen Law says it's rare for a blade to get loose, and she's never heard of this happening in Iowa.
Siemens Energy is working to replace the blade. Most of the blade that fell has been removed from the field.




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