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Sunday News, April 6

Sunday Afternoon Field Fires

(Le Mars) -- Despite the recent blanket of snow from Thursday, conditions are still dry, and as a result, the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department, with assistance from the Hinton Fire Department responded to a field fire Sunday afternoon.  The fire was reported at about 4:00 p.m. near the intersection of 270th Street and County Road K-49, about eight miles south of Le Mars.  The fire started as a brush fire but quickly got out of control. The owners admitted to fire officials they believed the recent moisture would have prevented the fire from spreading.  It had spread over a corn stalk stubble field, burning approximately 20 acres before fire officals were able to contain and control the fire with two grass fighting rigs and an all terrain vehicle equipped with a water tank.  Fire officials were at the scene for an hour.  The Plymouth County Sheriff's office also responded to the fire.

(Akron) -- The Akron Fire Department also had to respond to a field fire Sunday afternoon.  The fire was reported shortly after 1:00 p.m. at 21257 County Road C-16.  Fire officials were on the scene for approximately one hour.

Former Normady Restaurant Sustains Severe Fire Damage

  SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - The owners of a historic Sioux City building that dates to the 1930s are trying to determine how much can be salvaged after a weekend fire.
     The distinctive Normandy building sustained significant damage Saturday. 
     Fire officials haven't been able to determine what caused the fire partly because it hasn't been safe for inspectors to enter the building. Sioux City Fire Marshal Mark Aesoph says the roof will have to be removed before investigators can enter.
     The white building with cone-shaped turrets was the longtime home of the Normandy Restaurant. It has also housed other businesses and in recent years, several art studios.

Fire Investigators Finish Looking At Des Moines Younkers Store Fire

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Federal experts have wrapped up their investigation of a downtown Des Moines fire without determining the cause.
     Investigators with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said Sunday there is no sign the March 29 fire in the former Younkers building was set intentionally.
     But it's not yet clear what caused the fire at the building built in 1899 that was being renovated into apartments at the time.
     Control of the devastated building will be turned over to the developer. 
     City officials will now work to determine what development might be done on the block after the fire.

Pedestrian Hit By Car

FARLEY, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say an eastern Iowa man struck and killed a pedestrian early Sunday.
     The accident happened before 3 a.m. Sunday along Highway 20 near the town of Farley.
     The Dubuque County Sheriff's office says 24-year-old Alex Hannan was merging onto the highway when his vehicle struck the pedestrian.
     A deputy arrested Hannan on suspicion of drunken driving.
     The name of the pedestrian was not immediately released.


Suspicious Death

  CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Police say the death of a 37-year-old Cedar Rapids woman is suspicious.
     Cedar Rapids police say Shanna Lee Beyhl's death is being investigated.
     Beyhl was found dead in her apartment Friday after officers went to check on her. 
     Police said an autopsy has been scheduled, but they didn't say how Beyhl died. 
     No arrests had been made by Sunday morning, but police say they don't believe there is any threat to the public.


Focus On Settlement Agreements Continues At State Capitol Building

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Settlement agreements are likely to continue to dominate the agenda at the Iowa Capitol this week as some lawmakers remain unsatisfied with discrepancies in testimony and answers they received during hearings last week.
     Former employees testified at a Government Oversight Committee hearing Wednesday they were treated badly when fired in 2011 and were offered money to keep quiet about their dismissals. Department of Administrative Services Director Mike Carroll denied those allegations on Thursday in testimony to the committee that completely contradicted the workers.
     Democratic Sen. Janet Petersen, chair of the Senate Government Oversight Committee, says she plans to ask state department heads and human resources officials to come before the committee. She's waiting for the Department of Administrative Services to provide numerous documents about state contracts and hiring practices.






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