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Monday News, February 3

Chamber of Commerce Honors Iris Hemmingson As "Citizen of the Year"

(Le Mars) -- At Saturday evening's Le Mars Chamber of Commerce annual banquet, both the "Citizen of the Year" and the "Business of the Year" awards were announced.  This year's Business of the Year is Fedder's Marine and RV which during the past year moved their operations to a new building on the northwest corner of town.  Fedder's Marine and RV is recognized nationally as one of the largest dealers for one of its product lines.  The "Citizen of the Year" was presented to Iris Hemmingson for her countless hours of historical preservation and renovation of Le Mars, including the recent grant to help with the restoration efforts of the downtown business district.  The United Way "Paul Ole Olson Volunteer of the Year award was presented to Julie Beitelspacher.

 

Lawmakers Meet With School Officials

(Le Mars) -- State lawmakers Chuck Soderberg of Le Mars and Bill Anderson of Pierson met Saturday with school officials from both the Le Mars Community School District and the Hinton Community School District.  Education funding was the first topic discussed, according to Scott Kommes, the president of the Le Mars Community School Board.

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Soderberg says the state House of Representatives wants to first make certain the money will be available before making promises and committments on education spending.

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The Iowa Republican Representative says other programs will also need to be funded in addition to schools.

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The Le Mars School Board president says he understands the legislature's position of wanting to have enough money to finance all other programs, still, he is concerned about how schools will be able to meet their increasing expenses.

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Soderberg Expects Budget To Consume Legislators' Time During Fourth Week Of Session

(Le Mars) -- This week is the fourth week of the state general session with the legislature.  State Representative Chuck Soderberg believes much of the time will be directed towards the state budget.

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Still No Republican Senate Candidate Has Emerged As Front Runner

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - As the 2014 election cycle takes shape, no clear leader has broken out in the Republican race to take on Democrat Bruce Braley in the fall.
     At least six candidates are competing to run against Braley, a congressman from Waterloo and only Democrat in the field.
     Republicans hope that weak approval ratings for President Barack Obama and his policies will boost the GOP's chances for the seat being vacated by Democratic Senator Tom Harkin.
     Some of the state's top Republican office-holders didn't run, opening the doors for the lesser-known candidates, including radio host Sam Clovis; state Senator Joni Ernst; former energy company CEO Mark Jacobs; former U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker; lawyer Paul Lunde; and former car salesman Scott Schaben.
     Conservative activist Bob Vander Plaats says he's considering a bid.

 

State Fair Board Still Discussing Alternatives To Cash For Food Vendors

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa State Fair Board is still discussing a way to eliminate cash sales at food vendors and other attractions.
     The board has been discussing prepaid plastic cards similar to credit cards, even though no changes are planned for this summer's fair. Following a public outcry, officials announced Jan. 9 that they were scrapping plans for a cashless system this summer that would have used tickets purchased online or at several sites on the fairgrounds.
     Fair board member Jerry Parkin said in a Jan. 8 email to county fair leaders that he hopes to offer a "credit-type card" that could be loaded with any amount.
     State Fair CEO Gary Slater says the prepaid cards could be used at any business that accepts credit cards.
     ---

Authorities Refuse To Release Health Information On Woman After Being Stunned

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Muscatine County officials are refusing to release the medical records of a woman who was shocked with a stun gun four times last fall as officers tried to get her to change clothing.
     The woman, Marie Franks, has asked officials to release the records to the newspaper but so far officials have refused.
     Video of the incident shows the woman, Marie Franks, cursing at jail staff and swinging her arms apparently to keep jail staff away. She was shocked four times in eight minutes during the Oct. 7 incident.
     Franks suffers from bipolar disorder and was off her medication. The records should show what medication she was given in jail.
     Two law school professors at Drake University say the records should be released.
     ---

 

Champion Woman Food Eater

JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) - A 120-pound Nebraska woman has set another record during the Adam Emmenecker Challenge at Jethro's BBQ n' Pork Chop Grill in Johnston
 
      Molly Schuyler, of Bellevue, Neb., on Sunday downed the 5-pound championship meal in four minutes and 50 seconds, paring more than 2 minutes off her old record. The competition is named for a former Drake University basketball player.
      Schuyler says she wasn't feeling so well after so much competition over the past few days.
      On Friday she won $22,000 at Philadelphia's Wing Bowl by consuming 363 wings in 30 minutes. On Saturday she won the Pancake Bowl at the International House of Pancakes in Urbandale. Later in the day she won again at the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival.
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