Thursday News, November 28
Study Shows Iowa Lacks Qualified Workers
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A state survey suggests Iowa lacks enough qualified workers to meet the expansion plans of Iowa companies.
The shortage is the top reason businesses cite in choosing not to expand in the state.
The Iowa Economic Development Authority has been collecting the results of the ongoing survey to identify areas where Iowa could better attract new businesses or work with existing ones. The agency's director, Debi Durham, has cited the results several times.
Durham told a budget hearing Tuesday that more than 7,000 companies have been interviewed using the survey since 2007.
Iowa State economist Dave Swenson says problem is more a lack of people than a lack of skills. Swenson says Iowa isn't good at retaining its trained workers.
Murder Trial For Man Who Shot Rockwell City Police Officer Delayed
ROCKWELL CITY, Iowa (AP) - The murder trial of a Rockwell City man accused of killing a police officer during a standoff has been rescheduled for next year.
The Fort Dodge Messenger reports (http://bit.ly/1jLy3mu ) 32-year-old Corey Trott recently waived his right to a speedy trial. It is now scheduled to begin April 21 instead of Dec. 3.
Trott is charged with first-degree murder in the Sept. 13 death of Rockwell City Police Officer Jamie Buenting, an eight-year veteran of the small town's department. Trott has pleaded not guilty.
Buenting was responding to a standoff involving Trott, who was wanted on an outstanding warrant for assault. Trott is accused of firing a rifle that fatally hit Buenting.
Gun Club Sets Up Next To School
WAUKEE, Iowa (AP) - No Iowa laws apparently are being broken by the presence of a gun club next to a school being built in a western Des Moines suburb.
The Des Moines Register says (http://dmreg.co/1glaj95) that, according to an opinion from the Iowa attorney general's office, private properties are exempt from laws restricting guns within 1,000 feet of school property
Geoff Greenwood is a spokesman for Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, and Greenwood told the newspaper that the law doesn't apply to private property that is not part of school grounds.
Timberline School is being built next door to the New Pioneer Gun Club's shooting range in Waukee.
Waukee Schools Superintendent Dave Wilkerson says plans call for a 6-foot berm with a chain-link fence to keep kids from walking onto the range.
Firefighters Rescue Deer From Lake
CLEAR LAKE, Iowa (AP) - Firefighters donned rescue suits and ice cleats to help two deer that had been stranded on slippery Clear Lake in northern Iowa.
The Clear Lake Fire Department was notified around 2:15 p.m. Wednesday that the animals were floundering about 400 yards from shore, unable to gain purchase on the ice.
Department spokesman Billy Krefft says firefighters decided to try a rescue so others without sufficient training or safety gear wouldn't make an attempt and wind up needing rescue themselves.
The firefighters used ropes to drag the exhausted animals back to shore. Krefft says the larger of the two, a buck, was treated and then released back into the wild. The younger, smaller of the two had suffered a broken leg, so it was euthanized.