Tuesday Afternoon News, March 12
Supervisors Place Weight Limit On Marble Avenue
(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors passed a resolution that restricts the weight limit on portions of Marble Avenue. County Engineer Tom Rohe explains why the weight limit restriction is needed.
The county engineer says the weight limit is set at six tons per axle. Rohe says by the end of May is when the road is usually in better condition to handle some larger trucks. He says depending upon how fast frost leaves during the spring melting, other roads may need weight restrictions.
And which of the county maintained country roads concern him the most?
Gehlen Students Select Their Pope
(Le Mars) -- Much like the Catholic Cardinals of the world who have gathered at the Vatican to select a new pope, students at Gehlen Catholic High School are performing a similar ritual. Cecilia Henrichs serves as the religion teacher for Gehlen. She says she is having her students place a ballot to "pick their pope."
Henrich says the students will select their pope from a list of Cardinals.
Henrich says she will use the experience to discuss the history of the conclave process.
Henrich says unlike the Vatican, Gehlen students will not be sending a smoke signal when their pope is selected.
Senate Passes Tax Break Bill For Low Income Families
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Low income Iowa residents would get a bigger break on their taxes under a bill that is moving through the state Senate.
Democratic Sen. Joe Bolkcom says Tuesday that the measure would apply to households with incomes of less than $45,000. He says about 210,000 households would get a roughly $250 tax break. The proposal would raise the state credit from 7 percent to 20 percent of a taxpayer's federal earned income tax credit.
The Senate Ways and Means Committee approved the bill Tuesday and will now go to the full Senate for a vote. But while Democrats who control the Senate support the effort, it may have little
chance of becoming law. Gov. Terry Branstad has vetoed similar legislation in past years.
Spring Rains and Melting Has Communities Concerned
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Recent rains coupled with an expected warm-up have some Iowa communities warily watching rising streams.
The National Weather Service says snowmelt is producing both minor and major flooding for cities along rivers mostly in eastern Iowa. Several flood warnings are in effect.
Several cities along the Iowa River are experiencing flooding. Kalona near the English River has major flooding, with water at 18 feet as of Tuesday. That's above its flood stage of 14 feet.
Residences along the Wapsipinicon River near DeWitt also are experiencing major flooding. The water is at 13.1 feet as of Tuesday, above its flood stage of 11 feet.
Weather officials say recent heavy rain is unusual for this time of year.
Efforts To Help Endangered Fish Species Are Stalled
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Federal efforts to create thousands of acres of shallow-water Missouri River habitat to help an endangered fish species have been stalled for nearly six years in the
waterway's namesake state.
The issue recently came to a head when a Missouri agency refused to act on a permit request for a long-stalled project. That raises new questions about what will happen next in the effort to provide
a refuge for young pallid sturgeon.
The conflict centers on where to dump dirt that's excavated as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seeks to recreate about 20,000 acres of shallow-water habitat. So far, only 3,500 acres have been
Farm groups don't want the soil dumped into the river, saying they'll get the blame when it causes environmental problems. Proponents say rubbish.
Police Officer Saves Driver From Burning Car
URBANDALE, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa police officer has rescued an unconscious driver by pulling him from his burning car.
Urbandale police spokesman Randy Peterson said Tuesday that Officer Zac McDowell wasn't injured Sunday night when he saved 18-year-old Ian Waseskuk (wa-SEHS'-kuh). The officer's dashboard
camera shows McDowell opening the car's passenger door, reaching in and grabbing Waseskuk to pull him away from the flames.
Police say Waseskuk was driving in circles, doing "doughnuts," in a church parking lot across from his home in suburban Des Moines when his car hit an air conditioning unit.
Peterson says Waseskuk will be charged with misdemeanor reckless driving when he leaves Mercy Hospital in Des Moines. Hospital spokesman Gregg Lagan (LAY'-guhn) says Waseskuk is in fair but