Monday News, May 12
Tornadoes Reported In Sioux County
(Hospers) -- Two tornadoes were spotted Sunday evening in Sioux County near Hospers. The first tornado was reported at about 8:35 p.m. and the second tornado was spotted about twenty minutes later. The Sioux County Sheriff's office confirms damage was done to some farms near the area, including a hog confinement facility was damaged. There were no injuries reported from the Sioux County tornadoes. Check back for additional updates.
Strong Storms Hit Lake Panorama
PANORA, Iowa (AP) - Buildings have been damaged by a storm that roared through the Lake Panorama area near Panora in central Iowa.
Authorities say at least eight condominiums at the lake were damaged Sunday night, but no injuries were reported. One man who took shelter in a condo bathroom was found unharmed.
The National Weather Service is expected to send a survey team to the area on Monday to determine whether the damage was caused by a tornado.
Panora is 37 miles west-northwest of Des Moines, in Guthrie County.
Life Skills Training Center To Hold Annual Meeting
(Le Mars) -- Life Skills Training Center will hold its annual meeting and awards banquet later this evening. The program will be held at the Presbyterian United Church of Christ Fellowship Hall. Dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m. with the awards program and annual meeting to start at 7:30 p.m. Life Skills Training Center will award the client achievement award, and will recognize members, volunteers, clients, and staff.
Le Mars School Board To Convene Monday Evening
(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Community Board of Education will meet this evening and will discuss Commencment, Awards Night, Foundation Chamber Coffee, and the Employee Recognition Coffee for those faculty and staff members who will leave the Le Mars Community School District. The school board will consider approving the tentative agreement with the Le Mars Education Association for the 2014-15 Master Contract. The school board will also hear a report from a team of teachers that researched social studies textbooks for the elementary grades, later in the evening the board will decide whether to adopt the reccomended social studies textbook. The board will also hear a report on the proposed new changes for the student handbook for 2014-2015 school year.
Le Mars Mainstreet To Offer Business Builder Seminars
(Le Mars) -- A new series of educational opportunities will be offered by the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce Main Street program and the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Plymouth County. The series will be called Business Builders which will offer five lunch and learn sessions a year and one major workshop. The Business Builder program will feature a local or regional speaker every two months.
Mary Reynolds, Le Mars Mainstreet Manager says "the Le Mars Mainstreet organization has been working in conjunction with the Plymouth County Extension since the first of the year in planning this new series of learning experiences,” stated Mary Reynolds, “Session content will vary throughout the year but information should be pertinent to all community citizens.”
The first Business Builder luncheon will be held on Monday, June 9, 2014 Noon at the Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor - 2nd Floor. Featured speaker will be Le Mars Police Chief Stu Dekkenga. His presentation will focus on “Strengthening Community and Police Relations: An Informational Update on Le Mars.”
Cost is $15.00 a person - reservations are required. Call Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce 546-8821 or the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Plymouth County 546-7835. The area public, business, industry and community leaders are invited to attend the one hour lunch and learn. Food will be prepared by Timmy’s Catering.
Lisa Wagner, chairperson for the Le Mars Main Street Business Improvement Committee says “The Business Improvement committee is focused on providing educational opportunities for area businesses and industry and for Le Mars citizens. The workshops will vary in content. Topics will range from local leaders providing updates on the community to current trends, technology and subjects pertinent to maintaining a successful business in our community. The workshops will offer ideas and discussion that will enhance Le Mars.”
Fire Claims Life Of Infant Child
COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - Firefighters are investigating a fire that killed an infant girl in western Iowa.
6-month-old Mayci Colburn-Lerette was killed in the fire in Council Bluffs around 8 p.m. Saturday.
Three other family members were critically injured by smoke inhalation and taken to Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha. They are 30-year-old Jeremiah Lerette, 70-year-old Terese Lerette and 2-year-old Gerard Lerette.
Assistant Council Bluffs Fire Chief Justin James says the fire started on the first floor of the home.
Authorities will investigate the fire to determine what may have caused it.
Debate Over Economic Benefits From Fertilizer Plant
WEVER, Iowa (AP) - The construction of a $1.8 billion fertilizer plant is having a significant impact on southeast Iowa, but many people still debate how much the project will boost the economy long term.
About 1,500 construction workers are building the plant near Wever, and that number is expected to grow to nearly 2,500 later this year.
Lee County Sheriff Jim Scholl says area residents have noticed the heavy construction traffic.
The plant Orascom Construction is building is supposed to create 165 permanent jobs after construction is done. In return, the company received $100 million in state tax breaks.
The project's supporters expect the plant to provide an economic boost to the region and state.
But Iowa State University economist David Swenson says the state overpaid.
Bill To Assist Veterans
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - At the urging of Governor Terry Branstad, lawmakers approved a bill last session aimed at making Iowa more attractive to military veterans and help them find jobs.
The bill, called Home Base Iowa, exempts federal retirement pay from state income taxes and makes it easier to obtain licenses for civilian jobs based on military training.
Branstad says he hopes to sign the bill on Memorial Day at Camp Dodge in Johnston.
The Home Base Iowa bill is expected to exempt taxes for 7,765 current Iowans receiving military retirement income. The state is expected to lose about $9 million a year in revenue to the general fund.
The National Conference of State Legislatures says Iowa is among dozens of states approving measures aimed at helping veterans.