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Wednesday News, July 9

Local Church Helps Those In Need With Construction and Painting Of Home

(Le Mars) -- A local church, along with a youth group from Manitoba, Canada are assisting with a construction and painting project in Le Mars.  Pastor Ken Vander Ploeg of the Calvin Reformed Church of Le Mars is overseeing the project. He says the "Prairie Project" identifies families of limited means, or who are physically unable to make needed repairs to their homes.  The group focused its attention on a home located at 315 2nd Avenue northwest, and belonging to Steve and Jan Sneller.

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Vander Ploeg says the youth group are in the area for only three days, but have worked on several projects.

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Vander Ploeg says the groups are an extension of the Habitat for Humanity.

 

Sioux City Council Tells Police There Isn't Enough Money For Repairs To Building

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - The City Council says Sioux City doesn't have nearly $4 million to repair its police and fire department headquarters. The city has budgeted $2.5 million for the repairs to the leaky, 28-year-old building. Police officials say they will revise their plans and come back to the council in a few weeks.

 

Attorney General Secures Refunds From Club Membership

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - More than 400,000 Iowans who were tricked into signing up for buying club memberships will be eligible for refunds ranging from $6 to hundreds of dollars or more.
     Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller announced Tuesday that refund notices are being sent to Iowans who had memberships with Connecticut-based Vertrue Inc. and two other buying clubs.
     The $40 million refund is the culmination of Miller's 11-year investigation and prosecution of Vertrue, which was found to have tricked Iowans into buying 864,000 memberships dating back to 1989. Most of the memberships weren't used.
     Miller says the checks will be sent later this year, likely between October and December. Des Moines man Richard Schulz says he expects to receive $1,500 in refunds from Vertrue after he unknowingly had a paid membership for years.

 

Iowa State University Intergrating The Role Of Crop Specialists

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa State University is revising the way its crop specialists work with farmers on the best ways to plant and care for soybeans and corn.
     Traditionally corn specialists worked with corn growers and soybean specialists worked with soybean producers. Now, however, the university says it's putting together a new team of integrated cropping systems specialist.
     They will focus on how corn and soybean production interacts with soil, weather, cover crops, crop rotation and management practices and support farmers' use of data-driven technologies in precision agriculture.
     The team is led by Sotirios Archontoulis (So-tee-ree-os Ark-on-tool-is), who joined Iowa State in 2012.
    Joel DeJong, who serves farmers in northwest Iowa as a crops specialist, says the new intergration will not change much in the manner how he assists farmers.

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Iowa DOT Establishes Dates For Roadside Haying

 AMES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa transportation officials have set two schedules for harvesting hay within state-maintained highways.
     The Iowa Department of Transportation says cool season grasses and forage legumes can be harvested between July 15 and Sept. 1. Warm season native grasses can be harvested between July 15 and Aug. 15.
     People must obtain a permit to perform any type of work on state highways. They will also need to wear a fluorescent green safety vest and provide traffic control in some instances.
     DOT officials say only one cutting per year is allowed so grasses can recover before the winter season.

 

Hog Confinement Barn On Fire

 HUDSON, Iowa (AP) - Firefighters are battling a fire at a rural hog confinement operation in northeast Iowa.
     Officials say a structure at the confinement in Hudson caught fire Tuesday before spreading to an adjacent building. Heavy smoke and impaired visibility was reported.
     The second structure contained hogs, and some are believed to have died in the fire. It is unclear how many hogs were inside.
     Firefighters from at least three departments were battling the fire. Nearby neighbors at one point gathered to help move several items, including propane and gasoline tanks, out of the fire's path. Authorities say it's unclear what caused the fire.
     ---

 

Iowa WWII Pilot Remains Are Found And Identified

 MOULTON, Iowa (AP) - Officials say remains found in Germany in 2012 have been positively identified as belonging to a WWII airman from Iowa who went missing more than 69 years ago. 
     The Iowa National Guard says Staff Sgt. Robert "Bobby" E. Howard, of Moulton, Iowa, was 21 years old in April 1945 when his aircraft was shot down over Germany. He and four other crew members were officially declared dead, though their remains were never recovered.
     Officials say in a news release Tuesday that a research and analysis group concluded earlier this year that human remains found near the possible aircraft crash site belong to Howard.
     A memorial service for Howard will be held in Moulton on July 19 with full military honors.

 

AIDS Research Team Forfeits Grant

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An AIDS research team at Iowa State University will not get a final payment of $1.38 million it had been awarded from the National Institutes of Health after a team member admitted last year to faking research results.
     The NIH says the final payment of a five-year grant will not be made.
     Dong-Pyou Han has pleaded not guilty in federal court to four counts of making false statements in research reports. He is free on bond awaiting trial.
     Prosecutors say Han wrote a letter to university officials before resigning in 2013 in which he says he spiked samples of rabbit blood with human antibodies to make an experimental HIV vaccine appear to work. Han's letter says he acted alone.
     The team continues its research and is seeking additional funding.

 

Medicaid Director Resigns

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The state's Medicaid director has resigned to take a job with the University of Iowa.
     The state Department of Human Services says Jennifer Vermeer's resignation will be effective Aug. 21. She is leaving to become the new assistant vice president of medical affairs with University of Iowa Health Care.
     Julie Lovelady, the Medicaid deputy director, will become the interim director. A national search will be launched to permanently fill the position.
     Vermeer has been the state's Medicaid director since 2008.

 

Nashua Police Chief Demoted 

NASHUA, Iowa (AP) - The police chief of a northern Iowa city has been demoted back to officer.
     The Nashua City Council made that decision on Monday regarding the city's chief, Ernie Willsher. 
     Mayor Deanne Lantow said in the demotion notice to Willsher on June 20 that his attitude is to blame, but she did not go into specifics. 
     Willsher has 30 days to appeal the decision and request a formal hearing.
     Officer Paul Becthold was named interim chief of the four-member department. Nashua has about 1,700 residents.

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 


 

 

 

   

Tuesday Afternoon News, July 8

Supervisors Hear Quarterly Recorder's Report

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors heard a report from County Recorder JoLynn Goodchild during their Tuesday morning meeting.  Goodchild informed the supervisors that the county has collected more than $115,700 this past quarter.

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Goodchild reported most of the money collected was from mortgages

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The county supervisors also heard from County engineer Tom Rohe who informed the board, debris clean up from the June flooding is still occurring.

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Despite the flooding, and the subsequent debris clean up following the flooding, Rohe told the supervisors he thought his crew and contractors were still on schedule with many of the county's culvert and bridge replacement projects scheduled for this summer.

 

Iowa To Pay Army $750,000 For Drowning Victim

  IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - The state of Iowa will pay the Army $750,000 for the medical care of a boy who died after nearly drowning during a university-operated camp in Germany.
     The State Appeal Board on Monday approved the settlement with the Army, which had been seeking $1.8 million reimbursement for the cost of treating Blake Jermon.
     Jermon was 10 when he nearly drowned in 2003 at a municipal swimming pool during an outing with Camp Adventure, a University of Northern Iowa program for the children of U.S. military personnel. His mother was an Army sergeant in Germany.
     Jermon suffered brain and spinal injuries and had to use a wheelchair. He died from complications during a 2006 surgery.
     The state in 2012 paid a $2.1 million settlement to Jermon's mother, following years of litigation.

 

Trial Continues For Death Of 20 Month Old Dead Boy

  MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) - More than 2,000 documents, photographs and cassette tapes have been discovered recently in connection to the case of a man charged with killing a 20-month-old Mason City boy in 1994.
     A retired state Division of Criminal Investigation agent was testifying last week in the case of 38-year-old Michael Cisneros when his comment over 20-year-old crime scene photographs sent both prosecutors and defense attorneys searching the evidence room of the local police department. A judge sent the jury home on July 2 in response. 
     Cisneros is accused of killing John Snyder Jr., whose body was found in a creek. Cisneros was an acquaintance of the child's father. He has pleaded not guilty.
     The Mason City Globe Gazette reports (http://bit.ly/1qPz3hD) testimony in the case resumed Monday.

 

Attorney General Says Iowans To Receive Refunds From Fraudulent Membership Club

   IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - More than 400,000 Iowans who were tricked into signing up for buying club memberships will be eligible for refunds ranging from $6 to hundreds of dollars or more.
     Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller announced Tuesday that refund notices are being sent to Iowans who had memberships with Connecticut-based Vertrue Inc. and two other buying clubs.
     The $40 million refund is the culmination of Miller's 11-year investigation and prosecution of Vertrue, which was found to have tricked Iowans into buying 864,000 memberships dating back to 1989. Most of the memberships weren't used.
     Miller says the checks will be sent later this year, likely between October and December. Des Moines man Richard Schulz says he expects to receive $1,500 in refunds from Vertrue after he unknowingly had a paid membership for years.

 

Ames Closes Water Slides

AMES, Iowa (AP) - An Ames pool has temporary closed its slides to the public because of design cracks.
     Officials at the Furman Aquatic Center said in a news release Tuesday that they recently discovered cracks in the structural supports of the drop slide and the tube slides.
     The slides will be closed until a structural engineer can investigate the issue.
     Ames Parks and Recreation Director Keith Abraham says the public's safety comes first. The rest of the center, which includes a lazy river, diving boards and a water playground, remains open during regular hours.

 

Prosecutors Ask Victims Of Salmonella Food Poisoning To Decribe Illness Affects

  IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Prosecutors are asking the victims of a 2010 salmonella outbreak to share their stories as a judge considers how to punish the corporation and executives responsible.
     The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Iowa is asking anyone who was sickened by eggs produced by Quality Egg, LLC to come forward. Victims have the right to submit statements to the court describing what they had to endure.
     Quality Egg owner Austin "Jack" DeCoster and his son, Peter, have pleaded guilty to distributing adulterated eggs in interstate commerce. Quality Egg pleaded guilty to the same charge, as well as bribery and introducing misbranded food.
     The DeCosters and the company are awaiting sentencing, which hasn't been scheduled. They face up to one year in jail, plus fines and restitution.
 

 

   

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