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Wednesday News, January 1

Officials Retreve Pickup Truck From River

SERGEANT BLUFF, Iowa (AP) - A truck spotted in the Missouri River southwest of Sergeant Bluff has been removed from the water.
     The  truck was pulled out Tuesday after an Iowa Natural Resources Department crew saw the truck roof Monday afternoon.
     Lt. Tony Wingert with the Woodbury County Sheriff's Office says the truck was submerged near a boat ramp at Weedland Access Area off 235th Street. A dive team was called in to help a towing company hook up to the truck for removal.
     Officials still don't know when the truck went into the water. The car's registration plates had been removed, but officials located the vehicle identification number and are trying to track down the owner.
     There were no signs of foul play in the car.


Iowa Falls To 41st Place For Doctor/Population Ratio

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Board of Medicine says the number of physicians in the state is increasing, but Iowa still has far fewer doctors for its population than the national average.
     The board says that Iowa had 6,414 active physicians in 2012, for a rate of 208.6 physicians per 100,000 people. That compares to a national rate of 260.5 physicians.
     Nationally, Iowa ranks 41st in active physicians.
     Iowa dropped from 40th to 41st even though the number of Iowa physicians increased in 2010, when the rate was 208.2 active physicians per 100,000 people.
     What about Le Mars?  Do we have enough doctors to cover our population base?  Mike Donlin, administrator for the Floyd Valley Hospital says the hospital is always trying to recruit family practice doctors to Le Mars.  He says Le Mars could use additional physicans.

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Donlin says the hospital also tries to recruit for the specialized areas of medicine, and he says Floyd Valley Hospital takes recruitment of doctors seriously.

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Donlin says new doctors, before committing to a community, want to know if an opportunity exists to establish and grow their practice.

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New Juvenile Girls Home Requested

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An association of juvenile court officers wants Iowa to create a new state facility for delinquent girls to replace the Iowa Juvenile Home, which is being closed.
     The court officers say girls who once would have been housed at the Toledo home now risk being sent out of state or to temporary shelters that offer little or no treatment.
     The Iowa Juvenile Court Services Association said in a letter this week to state legislators that there still is a need for a state-run facility for delinquent girls. 
     Gov. Terry Branstad announced last month that state officials will close the Toledo home by Jan. 16, relocate the children and lay off the staff of 93 employees.


Branstad and Jindal Wager Food On Outback Bowl

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal have made a friendly wager over who wins the Outback Bowl.
     The governors announced Tuesday that food from their respective state may be sent to food banks in both Iowa and Louisiana. The game Wednesday in Tampa, Fla., will help determine if it's pork or seafood.
     If the Iowa Hawkeyes beat the LSU Tigers, Jindal will donate 100 pounds of Louisiana seafood to a food bank in Iowa and another 100 pounds to a food bank in Louisiana. If the Tigers win, Branstad will donate the same amount to the same food banks. Except the food will be pork from Iowa.
     The governors say the wager is aimed at helping the hungry in both states.


Program Established To Help Veterans Start Farming

 OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) - Veterans interested in farming will have more opportunities to learn about the trade in 2014.
     The newly formed Farmer Veteran Coalition of Iowa will hold four workshops aimed at helping individuals interested in starting a farm business or finding employment in agriculture.
     The one-day workshops will focus on networking opportunities and education. They follow a statewide conference held Dec. 14 in Des Moines.
     The first workshop will be held Feb. 20 in Ottumwa. The others will be held Feb. 22 in Waterloo, March 13 in Red Oak and March 15 in Storm Lake.
     Coalition chair Ed Cox says veterans are a distinct group of farmers with diverse interests, but they all have a history of service and a desire to provide food to their communities.


Employee Helped With Robbery

ALTOONA, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say an employee plotted with a man to fake a robbery at a fast-food restaurant in the Des Moines suburb of Altoona.
     An Altoona police news release identified the employee as 19-year-old Edis Gracanin, of Des Moines. Gracanin is charged with conspiracy, theft and making false reports. Twenty-one-year-old Andrew Potter, of Knoxville, is charged with conspiracy and theft.
     Gracanin had told officers on Monday that a gunman demanded cash and punched him before driving away from the Burger King on Adventureland Drive. But Altoona police detective Jason Ferguson says Gracanin and Potter had plotted and faked the crime. 
     Public phone listings for Gracanin and Potter couldn't be found. Online court records don't list the names of their attorneys.






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