Tuesday News, June 23
Plymouth County Board of Supervisors Will Not Meet This Week
(Le Mars) -- Due to a lack of agenda items, the Plymouth County Board of Supervisors will not be holding a meeting today. The county supervisors will be back next Tuesday, June 30th.
Le Mars School Board Sets Supplemental Aid For K-12 As Top Legislative Priority
(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Community School Board reviewed the legislative priorities as submitted by the Iowa Association of School Boards, and decided the utmost top legislative priority is a battle they have been fighting for the last few years. The local school board believes the state legislature should support setting supplemental state aid at 400 days, or 14 months prior to the certification of the school district's budget. In addition, the Le Mars Community School Board would like to see the state supplemental assistance set at six percent to encourage continuous school improvement and reflect the actual cost increases experienced by school districts and area educational agencies. The school board says their priority is to increase the state cost per pupil and the spending authority associated with it to build a strong base for future education resources. School Board president Scott Kommes believes the school board should remain consistent.
School Board Directors Dr. Mark Stelzer and Patrick Murphy both believe the state legislature will again delay the decision for K-12 educational funding next year.
Pat Murphy says school officials and constituents need to keep the pressure on state lawmakers for adequate school funding.
In other action last evening, the school board approved the contracts for the Teacher Leadership Program offering extended contracts to 32 instructors.
Westfield Man Pleas Not Guilty To Sexual Abuse Charges
(Le Mars) -- A Westfield man has pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing a young girl. Dennis Kroll, age 62, entered his written plea Friday in Plymouth County District Court to two counts of second-degree sexual abuse and one count of lascivious acts with a child. According to court documents, Kroll is accused of committing a sexual act with the girl, who was under age 12, from July 2009 through December 2012. He was arrested in May as the result of an April investigation when a school guidance counselor reported the incidents that led to Kroll's arrest.
Former Cherokee Teacher Pleas Not Guilty To Having Sex With Student
(Cherokee) -- A former teacher in the Cherokee school system has pleaded not guilty to having sex with a student. Chad Osler, 32, of Manchester, Iowa entered his written plea Thursday in Cherokee County District Court to charges of sexual exploitation by a school employee, lascivious conduct with a minor and third degree sexual abuse. His trial was set for September 15. According to court documents, Osler, who had been a physical education teacher and coach in Cherokee, had sex with the student in July of 2013. Court documents said the two continued to have contact throughout 2014 and again on January 16. Osler resigned in Cherokee in 2013 and had been employed as a physical education teacher in the West Delaware Community school district in Manchester. He submitted his resignation there prior to his arrest to take a teaching and coaching job at Lynnville-Sully Community School District in Sully, Iowa. He has since withdrawn from that position and will not be employed there.
National Weather Service To Investigate Monday Storm Damage
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The National Weather Service is sending a survey team to check damage and confirm a suspected tornado that ripped into a grocery store and nearby homes in southern Iowa.
An estimated 40 to 50 Hy-Vee store employees and customers in Albia took shelter in the store cooler when the storm struck Monday evening, shattering store windows and sending glass flying into a nearby neighborhood. Homes in the area lost roofs and windows as well.
Trees and power lines were knocked down around the city, but no injuries have been reported.
In northwest Iowa, straight-line winds approaching 100 mph destroyed a hangar at Sheldon Regional Airport and disabled five aircraft. Assistant Sheldon fire chief Randy Harms says firefighters and a hazmat unit were called out to contain airplane fuel that spilled.
Dykstra Dairy To Hold Open House Farm Tour
(Le Mars) -- June is recognized as Dairy Month and to help celebrate, the Western Iowa Dairy Alliance will again be hosting an open house farm tour scheduled for this coming Thursday, June 25th. The farm tour is open to the public and will be held at the Dykstra Dairy farm located at 34450 county road C-12, or about three miles east of Highway 75 on county road C-12. The dairy operation sits about halfway between Le Mars and Orange City.
Activities will start at 4:00 p.m. and will continue through 7:00 p.m. LeAnn Philips is the executive director with the Western Iowa Dairy Alliance. She says the dairy producers from this area offer the open house as a way to educate the public about dairy production.
Philips says this will be the eighth time the dairy alliance has offered the farm tour. She says in past year's the event has attracted up to 1500 people. Philips says many people are surprised by what they witness on a dairy farm.
The dairy alliance executive talks about what will be offered during the farm tour.
The Dystra Dairy milks approximately 3000 head of cows three times daily. Philips says Iowa has about 1400 dairy farms with many located within northwest Iowa, and with each cow contributing to the state's economy.
Philips says consumers are always interested in purchasing locally produced, and fresh foods. She says milk, and the milk based products, such as ice cream, butter, cheese, yogurt, and cottage cheese definitely falls into that category.
Again, that open house will be held on Thursday, June 25th between 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 pm at the Dykstra Dairy operation located on county road C-12, halfway between Highways 75 & 60, and halfway between Le Mars and Orange City.