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Tuesday News, July 2

Branstad Appoints Plymouth County People To State Boards and Commissions

(Des Moines) -- Several people from Le Mars and the surrounding area have recently been appointed by Governor Branstad to serve on various state boards and commissions.  Wayne Marty of Le Mars has been tapped to serve on the Iowa Centennial Memorial Foundation. Roger Claypool also of Le Mars will serve on the College Student Aid Commission. Patrick Schmitz of Kingsley and executive director with the Plains Area Mental Health Clinic of Le Mars will serve on the state's Mental Health Risk Pool Board, pending Senate confirmation. Jody Still Herbold of Kingsley was appointed to the Northwest Iowa Regional STEM Committee. Earlier this spring, Dr. Tom Jeneary of Le Mars was appointed to the Board of Dentistry, while Dr. Allison Schoenfelder of Akron was asked to serve on the state's Board of Medicine.


Harkin To Visit Le Mars To Look At American Legion Restoration Project

(Le Mars) -- Iowa Democratic Senator Tom Harkin has scheduled an appearance for Le Mars on Saturday, July 13th.  Harkin will spend about 45 minutes beginning at 9:00 a.m. visiting with local officials, and to review the restoration project of the American Legion Hall. The Iowa U-S Senator was the elected official responsible for securing federal money to go to Iowa Mainstreet community projects.  Le Mars received $30,000 from his efforts in the Challenge Grant application to the State of Iowa Main Street program.  The city of Le Mars contributed $15,000 and private donations were raised to match the $15,000.  Total cost of the project was $60,000.


Orange City To Announce Two New Building Projects

Orange City, IA — The Orange City Development Corp. will hold a press conference on Tuesday, July 9 at 10am at the Prairie Winds Event Center to announce two significant projects that will boost economic growth to the community and the region.

1. Development of a $6.2 million, three-story national-brand hotel to be built adjacent to the Prairie Winds Event Center on Highway 10, with projected opening next April.

2. Acquisition and subsequent sale of property on Highway 10 to Casey's General Stores, Inc. for construction of a new store on the site.


Crop Conditions Show Improvement

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Warmer and mostly drier weather is helping Iowa farmers near completion of corn and soybean planting and improving crop conditions.

The Department of Agriculture says 99 percent of the corn crop is in the ground as of Sunday and 96 percent of the crop has emerged, which is three weeks behind normal.

Warm humid days helped corn improve. The good to excellent rating increased 3 percentage points with 57 percent of the crop now rated in those two categories and 29 percent is fair. Fourteen percent is poor or very poor.

Ninety-six percent of the soybean crop has been planted, about two weeks later than normal. Eighty-nine percent of the soybean crop has emerged, eight percentage points behind the five-year average.

The condition of soybeans also improved slightly.


Boone Man Intends To Run For Congress On Democratic Ticket

Boone, IA – A Democratic Congressional candidate has emerged to run against Iowa Congressman Steve King.  He's Jim Mowrer, an Iraq War Veteran and Boone native, who announced his plans to run for Congress in Iowa’s 4th district.

Mowrer’s career has been rooted in service.  He joined the Iowa National Guard following high school.  Jim’s unit, the 1-133 Infantry Battalion, served the longest deployment of any unit in the Iraq War – 23 months.

Jim’s service continued after leaving the National Guard, serving his country at the Pentagon, as the Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of the Army.  Mowrer’s work at the Pentagon focused on making the Army more efficient and effective, while saving tax dollars.

Mowrer says “When he served in Iraq, there were no Democrats or Republicans – just Americans working together to protect our safety and stability.  But when he looks at Congress, he doesn’t see that same approach,”  Mowrer says, "In Congress, too many politicians are trying to score political points for partisan gain or pushing sound bytes to please their extreme base.  Mowrer says he decided to run for Congress to restore that true sense of public service –and to work together to find common sense solutions that will help middle class families. ”


Culver Endorses Braley For Senate

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Five months after U.S. Senator Tom Harkin gave Iowa its first open Senate seat in 40 years, the 2014 race is shaping up differently in each party. Democrats are quickly uniting behind a well-known prospect, while Republicans still are casting about for their candidate.
Democrat U.S. Representative Bruce Braley, his party's lone candidate, is steadily raising money and racking up endorsements. The latest is former Democratic Governor Chet Culver, who told The
Associated Press Monday that he was formally backing Braley.
Culver says Democrats expect a "challenging and difficult race," but that Braley is getting into a position where he can win.
On the Republican side, a host of top-tier prospects have opted out, others are still weighing their options and money and major endorsements remain largely up for grabs.
More Cities Placing Limits On Pay-Day Loan Operations
WINDSOR HEIGHTS, Iowa (AP) - Another Iowa city has approved restrictions on payday lending businesses and pawn shops.
Windsor Heights became the seventh Iowa city to pass rules that limit where such businesses can operate.
Critics of the payday loan businesses say they charge exorbitant interest rates to people who can least afford it. These loans are sought by people with problems accessing loans from banks.
Industry advocates say the businesses serve customers who otherwise cannot get loans. Critics say the loans have high interest rates that trap people in a cycle of borrowing.
Des Moines, West Des Moines, Clive, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids and Ames also regulate payday lenders.
Vehicle Sheared In Half But No Driver Found
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Des Moines police are investigating a 
vehicle found sheared in half with no driver inside.
Police say the wreck on a long stretch of roadway surrounded by 
trees was reported early Sunday morning.
Part of the car was found against a split power 
pole. Pieces of the car were scattered on the road.
There was no driver found inside the wreck, and the identity of 
the car's owner was unclear. Des Moines police say the car was just
purchased or in the process of being purchased.
The wreck is under investigation. Additional information was not 
Accused Child Pornography Commits Suicide
DES MIONES, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say an Iowa man charged with sharing child pornography committed suicide.
Polk County Medical Examiner Gregory Schmunk said Monday that 48-year-old Paul Thomas Hildreth fatally shot himself in the head.
Polk County Sheriff's deputies found Hildreth's body Sunday at a rural Polk City home.
Hildreth was charged last month with sharing two images of nude underage girls.
Hildreth told police he wasn't involved in producing child pornography, but he was charged with sexual exploitation of a minor.
Investigators found 1.5 million images on two of his computer hard drives and children's toys and video games in his basement.

Wisconsin Man Pleads Guilty To Fraudulent Scheme Involving Retail Bar Codes
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - A Wisconsin man has pleaded guilty to creating fake bar codes to dupe retail stores in eastern Iowa and southwestern Wisconsin into charging him discount prices for
hardware equipment.
Jeremy Fishnick of Lancaster, Wisconsin pleaded guilty Monday to wire fraud in federal court in Cedar Rapids.
He admitted that he used a computer and printer to create Universal Product Codes that corresponded with less expensive models of products such as welders and generators.
He entered stores, put the phony codes on top of real codes for more expensive models, and purchased them for the lower price. He paid $149.99 for one welder that had a retail price of $889.99.
The scheme caused losses of $30,000 to retailers in Dubuque, Maquoketa, Anamosa, Cedar Rapids, Coralville, Monticello and Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.



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