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KLEM News PM Update Sept. 1, 2010

(LE MARS)--The summer of 2010 will enter the record books as the second wettest in Iowa history.

Wet seasons are a reason Superintendent of the Le Mars Wastewater Treatment Facility Ron Kayser continues to ask Le Mars residents not to have their sump pumps connected to the sanitary sewer system.

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To be good citizens for the sanitary sewer system, Kayser reminds Le Mars residents not to pour cooking grease down the drain.

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Kayser points out other items can harm the treatment process.

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The annual cleaning of sewer lines for about one-fourth of the city began for a six-week period today.

Iowa family survives house explosion

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) A Sioux City family of five has escaped what could have been a deadly explosion at their home.

Authorities believe natural gas caused the blast Tuesday night.

The homeowner, Cuong Phung, his three children, ages 1, 6 and 9, and his mother-in-law escaped without suffering serious injuries. His mother-in-law and children were taken to a hospital as a precaution.

The blast, which happened about 6:15 p.m., shook the split foyer home off its foundation.

Phung says there was a ``big boom,'' and the ceiling fell down. He says there was a repairman at the house Tuesday afternoon working on the air conditioning.

Neighbor Kelsey McCann says the family is ``lucky to be alive.''

The state fire marshal is investigating.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Farrer is Fair checkers champ

(HINTON)--A Hinton Community School student knows his crowns, captures and jumps on the black-and-red- squared board.

Eleven-year-old Izaak Farrer won first place in the ages 6-12 category in the Youth Checkers Tournament at the Iowa State Fair.

The son of Steve and Candice Farrer of rural Hinton claimed the checkers championship for his age group on August 20th.

Yankton awarded funds for street in industrial expansion area

(YANKTON)--The state of South Dakota is partnering with a Yankton business expansion by funding improved access to an industrial park.

South Dakota Governor Mike Rounds announced the 142-thousand dollars financial assistance grant to extend Gehl Drive by 750-feet.

The street extension will allow the city of Yankton to provide water, sewer and transportation services to Dakota Trailer Manufacturing, which is expanding. The street will also serve future commercial projects in the East Side Industrial Park.

Dakota Trailer's new 46-thousand square foot building will result in an additional 25 to 49 jobs in Yankton and represents a private investment of about 2.43 million dollars.

Sweet corn arrives for Iowa troops in Mississippi

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) Iowa National Guard troops training in Mississippi are in for a taste of home.

About 400 dozen ears of Iowa sweet corn have been delivered to Camp Shelby, where 3,000 Iowa troops are training for their deployment to Afghanistan.

U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley says the corn was made possible by Iowa farmers, businesses and veterans group. The Democratic congressman from Waterloo organized the delivery. Braley says he got the idea from Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., who delivered shrimp and gumbo to Mississippi Guard members in Iraq.

Braley, who's visiting Camp Shelby to observe training, says the corn was to be shucked and served on Wednesday.

The deployment, the largest of Iowa National Guard members since World War II, is expected to last a year.

Iowa judge wants mental test for accused kidnapper

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) A judge has ordered a mental evaluation for a man accused of kidnapping and sexually assaulting a convenience store clerk in Cedar Rapids in May.

Court documents show Keith Elson Jr. plans to claim insanity, diminished capacity and intoxication as his defense.

Elson is charged with first-degree kidnapping. He's accused of kidnapping the woman employee at knife point from a Kwik Shop in the early-morning hours of May 17. Police found the woman and Elson at his apartment about seven hours later.

Assistant Linn County Attorney Jason Burns filed an application for an evaluation. Judge Denver Dillard approved it on Monday. The order shows Elson's attorney, Mike Lahammer, had no objections.

Elson's trial is Nov. 29.

PA Gov. Rendell to headline Iowa Dem dinner

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell will headline the Iowa Democratic Party's Jefferson Jackson Dinner next month, the party's biggest annual fundraising event.

Rendell is a former chairman of the Democratic National Committee and has been a prominent voice in party affairs for years. He'll be the featured speaker at the Oct. 16 event, which usually draws prominent figures.

Vice President Joe Biden headlined last year's dinner. Many credit then presidential candidate Barack Obama's strong performance at the 2007 dinner with giving him momentum that spurred him to a win in Iowa's leadoff caucuses.

The party announced Rendell's visit in a news release Wednesday.

FEMA extends funding to raze flooded homes in CR

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) The Federal Emergency Management Agency has beat a deadline and extended funding to demolish flood-damaged homes in Cedar Rapids.

A late-afternoon decision by FEMA on Tuesday will continue the funding to raze the worst-damaged homes through Nov. 27. The money had been slated to run out Tuesday night, which would have stopped the demolition project in the short run.

Cedar Rapids has 198 more homes to tear down that have been deemed an ``imminent threat'' to the public's health and safety. About 500 already are down.

Greg Eyerly, the city's flood-recovery director, says weather delays and historical reviews of properties have slowed the demolition process.

The homes were swamped in June 2008, when the Cedar River flooded, covering about 10 square miles of the city.

Couche Tarde raises buyout offer for Casey's


NEW YORK (AP) Convenience-store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard is raising its bid for Casey's General Stores to $38.50 per share in its latest effort to win over shareholders.

Canada's Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. had previously offered $36.75 per share, but Casey's said that is too low.

The latest offer, announced Wednesday, is valued at about $1.47 billion, excluding about $528 million in Casey's debt.

Couche-Tard on Tuesday extended its hostile bid through Sept. 30. The offer has steadily lost favor with investors who originally tendered 19.2 percent of shares when the bid was first extended.

Casey's is based in Ankeny, Iowa.


(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Submit your news release, confidential news tip or news idea by email klemnews@lemarscomm.net, by calling 712.546.4121 or 712.546.9672 fax.




   

KLEM News AM Update Sept. 1, 2010

(LE MARS)--Phones will ring throughout Plymouth County today (Wednesday) for the  annual Knights of Columbus Phonothon for Persons with Disabilities.

The Knights of Columbus Hall in Le Mars is the headquarters for the 31st annual Phonothon fund raiser.

All of the proceeds will benefit Life Skills Training Center in Le Mars and Iowa Special Olympics.

Life Skills serves more than 60 individuals with disabilities and has a full and part time staff of more than 20. The laundry processed more than one-point-two-million pounds of linen last year with a daily average of nearly five-thousand pounds. The non-profit had laundry contracts income of 500-thousand dollars in 2009 and supported employment services of 45-thousand dollars. There were 23 supported training sites in Le Mars for more than 68-hundred hours of annual training support.

Progress on the Knights of Columbus fund raising will be reported throughout the day on KLEM 1410 AM/96.9 FM.

Sewer line cleaning begins in Le Mars today

(LE MARS)--A contractor begins a yearly effort to keep lines open to the Le Mars Wastewater Treatment facility today (Wednesday).

Le Mars Wastewater Treatment Facility and Collection System Superintendent Ron Kayser says the cleaning reduces the likelihood of sewer lines plugging and backing up into basements.

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The sewer lines to be cleaned are all areas west of 4th Avenue northwest and southwest, from 6th Street Northwest to 24th Street Southwest. Also, all areas south and west of Central Avenue and 24th street Southwest.

Kayser explains the contractor finds whatever goes into the system.

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 Residents may experience some minor sewer problems and or traffic congestion in the areas being cleaned. Kayser says small things that can be done to alleviate problems in your home during cleaning include pouring water down your floor drains; having your sewer vent checked for blockages by bird nests, twigs/debris, and closing the toilet lid.

Branstad:  Keep Main Street program

(LE MARS)--The Republican candidate for governor brought a message about jobs to a campaign stop at the Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor in Le Mars Tuesday.

Terry Branstad was asked if he could make the state less unattractive to business. Branstad said he'd done it before as governor saying he was in Le Mars for a new business, SmithCo Manufacturing, the rural Le Mars the side dump trailer maker, and several expansions by Wells' Dairy.

Branstad pointed to the taxes on commercial business as an example of roadblocks to jobs.

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His plan to change economic development with a public-private partnership drew a question about the future of Main Street..a downtown revitalization program. The Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce is part of the Main Street program.

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Other topics the governor was asked about included tax reform, education, and foster care. 

Netley dies while clearing brush

(AKRON)--A southeast South Dakota man who was clearing brush seven miles east of Akron died Monday when a tree fell on him.

The Plymouth County Sheriff's office identified the man as  63-year-old James "Jim" Netley of Dakota Dunes, South Dakota.

The Sheriff's Office and Plymouth County Coroner's Office responded to the report of someone being injured around 7:30 Monday night. The location was on Highway Three at Ruble, a ghost town between Akron and Brunsville.

The sheriff's office said Netley's death was being handled as an accident and no further investigation was anticipated.

 

Palin returns to Iowa for GOP fundraiser

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will return to Iowa in September, headlining a state Republican Party fundraiser and sparking speculation about whether her visit indicates she's considering a run for president in 2012.

Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn confirmed Tuesday that Palin will speak Sept. 17 in Des Moines at the annual Reagan Dinner.

It will be Palin's second visit to Iowa since the 2008 election, when she served as GOP presidential nominee John McCain's running mate. She visited western Iowa briefly in December 2009 during a book-signing tour.

Strawn says he's confident Palin will motivate Republicans heading into the November elections.

As the state that leads off the presidential nominating process, Palin's visit also will likely prompt talk about whether she intends to make a White House run in 2012.

Woman has dog stolen at knifepoint

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) Police in Cedar Rapids say a man threatened to kill a woman with a knife if she didn't give him the dog she was walking.

Clarissa Kleppe told police she was walking a friend's miniature pinscher/Jack Russell terrier mix about 6 p.m. Monday when the man approached her from behind, held a knife to her throat and demanded the dog. The 23-year-old handed over the dog and was not injured.

The dog is valued at $50. Police are looking for a suspect based on Kleppe's description.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


Tire company to build Iowa plant

BOONE, Iowa (AP) A company based in the Czech Republic plans to build a new agricultural tire plant in Iowa.

Gov. Chet Culver and CGS Tyres made the announcement Tuesday at the Farm Progress Show.

The plant would be built in Charles City, in northern Iowa. Company officials plan to invest $43 million to build the plant.

The company says the plant would create 159 new jobs. Production is expected to begin in 2012.

Culver says the Iowa Department of Economic Development has spent six years working with the company to come to Iowa.

Cedar Rapids gives flood-damaged homes to builders

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) Cedar Rapids is giving away flood-damaged homes to builders and nonprofits for renovation and resale.

City officials are trying to save some of the ``least-badly'' damaged homes among about 1,200 buyouts. Builders and nonprofits can get the homes for free in exchange for rehabilitating and selling the homes at a 15 percent profit margin.

Eighteen builders and contractors and three nonprofits have identitified 100 homes they're interested in obtaining.

Under the program, once the city buys out a home it will notify the developer, who has 21 days to submit a renovation plan. The renovation must be done within 60 days, with the home sold to someone who owns and occupies it within a year.

Flood victims who owned the home and were bought out have right of first refusal in the sale.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

 Submit your news release, confidential news tip or news idea by email klemnews@lemarscomm.net, by calling 712.546.4121 or 712.546.9672 fax.




   

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