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KLEM News PM Update August 6, 2010

(LE MARS)--Sounds dominated the send off of Troop C of the Iowa Army National Guard in Le Mars Thursday.

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Family, friends, and community leaders, American Legion leaders and members, as well other veterans filled the bleachers to honor and say goodbye to the citizen soldiers called to active duty in Afghanistan. Sergeant Major Jerry Hansen of Le Mars guided the send off in Carey Gymnasium at Le Mars Community High School

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Letters were read by staffers for Governor Chet Culver, Senators Chuck Grassley and Tom Harkin as well as Congressman Steve King. The soldiers left on buses 45 minutes later hearing the sounds that started their send off .

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Business Highway 75 work involves two more steps

(LE MARS)--Two more steps to improve Business Highway 75 through Le Mars are planned.

This week, Barkley Asphalt of Sioux City is patching areas along southbound Business Highway 75, north of 12th Street.

City administrator Scott Langel says diamond grinding of the roadway's surface is next.

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The diamond grinding will be followed by chip sealing.

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The City Council has approved 245-thousand dollars in repairs to Business Highway 75 from Highway Three south.

Vander Plaats will focus on Iowa Supreme Court campaign

(DES MOINES)--Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats is launching a new effort in the battle over gay marriage in Iowa, a campaign aimed at the Iowa Supreme Court.

Vander Plaats has run three times for governor -- in 2002, 2006 and 2010. In this past June's Republican Primary, Vander Plaats got 42 percent of the vote, finishing second.

Vander Plaats had promised that if he were elected governor, he'd issue an executive order that would stop gay marriage in Iowa until voters could decide on a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage here.

In April of 2009 the seven-member state Supreme Court issued a ruling which paved the way for gay marriage in Iowa. This morning Vander Plaats held a news conference outside the Iowa Judicial Building. Vander Plaats announced he will lead an effort to defeat the three state supreme court justices who are on this November's ballot in a retention election. Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Marsha Ternus is one of the three justices who are up for retention in November. The justice who wrote the gay marriage ruling is not.  (News report by Radio Iowa)

Convicted killer of South Sioux City girl fights death penalty

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) A man convicted of murdering a 3-year-old Siouxland girl has asked for a new jury proceeding on whether he should be executed.

The request in Melecio Camacho-De Jesus' case was filed in light of a Nebraska Supreme Court decision in an unrelated death-penalty case.

Last week, the high court upheld the death penalty for Jose Sandoval, the ringleader of a group that killed five people at a Norfolk bank in 2002.

The court cited one error, however: instructing the jury to consider victims' mental anguish when considering whether Sandoval should be sentenced to death.

Camacho-De Jesus' appeal says his jury was given the same instruction during his sentencing phase. The jury recommended his execution.

A three-judge panel will make the final decision.

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

SUV rollover claims rural Dickens woman's life

(SPENCER)--A rural Dickens woman died at a Spencer hospital after her S-U-V left a Clay County road yesterday (Thursday afternoon).

The Clay County Sheriff's office reports 65-year-old Judy Elaine Adams was ejected from the S-U-V when it rolled multiple times after entering the roadway ditch.

The accident was reported around 5:30 yesterday afternoon.

Money headaches continue for water system

YANKTON, S.D. (AP) The executive director of the Lewis and Clark Regional Water System says it will take decades to complete the project if congressional funding continues at its current pace.

Troy Larson says critical water needs would get unmet for too long a time.

The $16 million in federal funding combined for the 2011 budget and the 2010 budget is $11 million less than what Congress approved for the project in 2009. Larson says officials are disappointed and will try to get more money before Congress finishes work on the current budget.

The $537 million system will bring treated Missouri River water to more than 300,000 people in South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa. Construction began in 2006.

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

UI President Mason gets $15,000 raise

AMES, Iowa (AP) The Board of Regents have approved a 3.3 percent pay raise for University of Iowa President Sally Mason.

The Regents approved the increase Thursday while meeting in Ames. It's Mason's first raise since taking the Iowa job in 2007.

Her annual salary will climb from $450,000 to $465,000.

Neither Iowa State University President Gregory Geoffroy nor University of Northern Iowa President Ben Allen requested raises. However, they were given increases in their deferred compensation agreements, which rewards them for staying at their jobs.

Geoffroy is paid $423,316, and Allen gets $320,000.

Axelrod, Plouffe headline Harkin steak fry

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) White House political strategists David Axelrod and David Plouffe will headline Sen. Tom Harkin's annual steak fry next month, bringing back two operatives with a long history in Iowa.

Plouffe was campaign manager for President Barack Obama's winning campaign in 2008, and Axelrod served as Obama's chief political strategist.

Harkin adviser Matt Paul says the two will speak at the event, held Sept. 12 at the Warren County Fairgrounds in Indianola.

The event is one of the Iowa Democratic Party's biggest fundraisers and past speakers have included Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton. Thousands of people attend the event, spending a day eating, drinking and talking politics.

Plouff began his political career working for Harkin's 1990 election campaign. Axelrod ran a political consulting business in Chicago, working for a string of candidates in Iowa.

Regents OK plan to close Vinton blind school

AMES, Iowa (AP) The Iowa Board of Regents has approved a plan to close a 148-year-old residential school for the blind in Vinton.

The board approved the plan Thursday, opting to close the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School and using $2.2 million in savings to hire more teachers. The money will pay for seven more teachers, two special-education consultants and other staff.

The Vinton campus will still provide some services and house the administration for a renamed Iowa Educational Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Since 1972, enrollment has dropped from 119 students to nine last year. Federal law encourages disabled children to attend traditional public schools.

The regents will recommend the change to the Legislature, and the plan could be completed by fall 2012.

Company selling Mason City powdered milk business

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) An Illinois company will buy a Mason City powdered milk business and then close the plant, putting 36 people out of work.

TreeHouse Foods, Inc., of Westchester, Ill., will buy the business from Associated Milk Producers Inc., based in New Ulm, Minn.

Associated Milk Producers spokeswoman Sheryl Doering Meshke says the company will run the plant through about Sept. 1. It will then be closed and eventually sold.

The company says it's selling the powdered milk business to focus on other dairy products.

Workers in Mason City were told about the sale Thursday.

Authorities in Fort Dodge find body

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) Authorities have recovered a body from the Des Moines River believed to that of a man missing since Sunday after going tubing with friends in Fort Dodge.

The body was spotted Thursday afternoon. Webster County Sheriff's Department detective Jason Bahr says authorities can't confirm the identity but presume it's Tyler Peart of Humboldt.

The 20-year-old Peart was tubing with friends on Lizard Creek when he went underwater in rough water. The body was found nearly three miles downstream from where Peart was last seen.

The creek empties into the Des Moines River.

Family and friends held vigils and set up a memorial on a bridge while firefighters searched for Peart.

$23 million could buy library fame in Cedar Rapids

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) For $23 million, your name can be over the door of Cedar Rapids' planned library.

The library board on Thursday agreed that a donor would need to contribute at least 51 percent of the library's cost before the panel would consider naming the building in that person's honor.

The library is expected to be built by late 2012 at a cost of $45.5 million.

Board members set guidelines for recognizing donors. Those who give $500 or more will have their names added to a donor wall, and people who give $2,500 can have their names affixed to a nameplate on an auditorium seat.

There are other options for those who give more.

The library will replace one destroyed in the 2008 flooding.

Board member Hilery Livengood says $1 million has been donated for the new library.

$5M gift opens doors to new Iowa State auditorium

AMES, Iowa (AP) A $5 million commitment from a foundation started by an Iowa State University alumnus will help the university build a $10 million, 400-seat auditorium that university officials say will provide a state-of-the-art learning environment for science courses.

The Iowa Board of Regents approved plans for the building Thursday. Construction is scheduled to be completed by the fall semester 2012.

The building will be named after Douglas Troxel, who is president and chief executive officer of the Change Happens Foundation. Troxel, who lives in Hawaii, is a Lake City, Iowa native who graduated from Iowa State in 1967 with a degree in mathematics.

The foundation is committed to motivated groups with pioneering research and projects that benefit humanity.

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

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


KLEM News AM Update August 6, 2010

(LE MARS)--Six-month-old Macy was all decked out in red, white and blue to say goodbye to her dad, Sergeant Matt Krogman, at Thursday's send off of Troop C from the 113th Calvary in Le Mars.

Sergeant Krogman left Thursday to begin training for his 3rd tour, his first after having a daughter. His wife Colleen said it's always hard to see him go, but having a child changes her perspective.

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Colleen added that father and daughter had some quality time on the drive in this morning from their home just south of Des Moines.

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Another dad left today for his first tour. 22 year old Jesse Olson of Le Mars was sent off by his mom, dad, wife, three year old son Noah, and many other family members and friends. His wife April said that even though he's excited to go, she is not happy to see him leave.

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The Iowa National Guard has a Family Program in place to assist family, friends and even community members struggling with their loved ones being deployed. Information about the support available can be found on-line at (News report by Angela Drake, KLEM News)

Vander Plaats schedules news conference today

(DES MOINES)--The Republican gubernatorial candidate from Plymouth County who finished second in the June 8th Primary will hold a news conference Friday morning, perhaps to make an announcement about his political future. 

Bob Vander Plaats said in late June that he planned to "stay in the game" because he owed it to a lot of people to "be their voice" on key issues. Vander Plaats has not endorsed Terry Branstad, the Republican Party's nominee for governor. Vander Plaats, who won about 41 percent of the vote in the June 8th primary, has said there is a "divide" within the G-O-P that Branstad does not acknowledge. Vander Plaats hasn't ruled out running as an independent candidate in the fall.

In late June, Vander Plaats said he would run as an independent candidate if he has a "clear chance of winning" and if it's the "only way to be a voice and a champion" on issues like gay marriage.  Friday's Vander Plaats' news conference is scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m. The news conference will be in front of the Iowa Judicial Building, according to Chris Dorsey who is the media contact for Vander Plaats. (News report by Radio Iowa)

Chalk Art in Le Mars in the fall

(LE MARS)--A two-day festival will return to Le Mars this fall.

Mary Reynolds of the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce says Mary Campbell of Bertram and Randy Becker of Le Mars will be the featured professional artists for the 2010 Chalk Art Festival.

Children's featured artist will be Sydney Rand of Le Mars.

Reynolds says the two-day Festival sponsored by the Chamber will transform the area around the Olson cultural Event Center into a large art canvass. Everyone is invited to come down and draw.

The Festival is Saturday, Sept. 18th and Sunday, Sept. 19th.

Volunteers may help by contacting Reynolds.

ABI endorses Soderberg

(LE MARS)--A Le Mars man who represents areas in Plymouth and Sioux Counties at the Statehouse has been endorsed by the Iowa Association of Business and Industry.

The Association of Business and Industry represents about 14-hundred companies employing more than 300-thousand Iowans. State Representative Chuck Soderberg was endorsed by the group.

A-B-I evaluates candidates on their ability to help create jobs in Iowa by supporting a competitive business climate.

Man sought as "a person of interest" in South Sioux City bank robbery is arrested

(SOUTH SIOUX CITY, NEBRASKA)--A man who is described by South Sioux City Police as a person of interest in a bank robbery Monday is in custody in southeast North Dakota.

Police Chief Scot Ford says 57-year-old Edward Corey was arrested Thursday afternoon in Richland County, North Dakota. Ford credits "diligent work by members of the U-S Marshall's Service and the cooperation of several law enforcement agencies" for the arrest.

A warrant had been issued for Corey as a fugitive due to an escape charge. An undisclosed amount of money was taken from Dakota County State Bank by a man who showed a gun and drove away from the bank in a van.

Body found in Storm Lake Thursday

(STORM LAKE)--A body of a man was found floating in the water in Storm Lake along the shoreline around noon Thursday.

The Buena Vista County Sheriff reports the preliminary examination by the Buena Vista County Medical Examiner's office showed no indication of foul play. An autopsy as well as procedures for a positive identification are being completed at the state medical examiner's office in Ankeny.

Buena Vista County sheriff Gary Launderville released written information about the case

Police: Drake student sexually abused frat brother

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Police have arrested a Drake University student accused of sexually abusing a fraternity brother.

Twenty-one-year-old Anthony Bertolone was arrested Wednesday and charged with third-degree sexual abuse.

He was released from jail later in the day. Jail officials say they had no listing for an attorney, and no attorney was listed in online court records.

A telephone listing for Bertolone wasn't found, and a call placed to the Sigma Chi (kye) fraternity went unanswered.

Des Moines police spokeswoman Sgt. Lori Lavorato says the victim was incoherent at the time of the assaults and believes he was drugged. She says the victim was unaware of the assaults until he found pictures of himself and Bertolone on a computer.

She says the assaults occurred multiple times with the first known assault occurring last September.

NE Iowa pastor arrested on sex charges

WEST UNION, Iowa (AP) A northeast Iowa pastor is in jail after being charged with sexually abusing a teenage girl.

The Fayette County sheriff's office says 40-year-old Timothy Parker, of Westgate, is charged with two counts of lascivious acts with a minor and one count of third-degree sexual abuse.

Parker, who is the pastor at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Westgate, was arrested Wednesday. He appeared in court Thursday and remains in jail. Jail staff didn't immediately know if he had an attorney.

Authorities say the county's computer crimes department will review evidence collected during a search of Parker's home.

If convicted, Parker could face up to 30 years in prison and be required to register with the state sex offender registry.

SE Iowa man accused of killing cat

BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) A Danville man has been charged with animal torture after authorities say he hanged his family cat from the ceiling.

Billy Lee Kracht was arrested Wednesday. He was released from jail Thursday morning. Online court records show he requested a public defender but no attorney is listed. No telephone listing for Kracht was found.

The Des Moines County sheriff's office says deputies went to Kracht's home July 30 after he reported his cat was found hanging from the ceiling, killed by someone who broke into the home.

When deputies arrived, they found Kracht's six children crying hysterically and the cat hanging from a leash.

Kracht later admitted he got upset when he found the cat out of its cage and hanged it. He also was charged with filing a false report.

Harkin: Federal money unlikely for Lake Delhi dam

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin says it's unlikely any federal money will be available to rebuild a failed dam that drained Lake Delhi in northeast Iowa last month.

In a conference call Thursday with Iowa reporters, Harkin noted there hasn't been a final decision on whether any federal disaster assistance might be available. But he says initial contacts with the Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Emergency Management Agency were not encouraging.

Because the dam was privately owned, Harkin says it looks like the federal government can't pay to rebuild it.

When the dam gave way July 24, it drained the 9-mile-long Lake Delhi.

Iowa man gets probation in campground camera case

DECORAH, Iowa (AP) A Decorah man has been sentenced to two years of probation for putting a video camera in a women's restroom at a northeast Iowa campground.

Sixty-nine-year-old Leslie Peterson was sentenced Tuesday in Winneshiek County District Court. He pleaded guilty to 8 counts of invasion of privacy and was fined $315 on each count.

Peterson was a campground host at the Kendallville Campground. The sheriff's office says he installed a video camera in the restroom three years ago.

They say it provided a live feed and that no recordings or photographs were found.

Peterson also must complete a sex offender treatment program and register with the state's sex offender registry.

Cedar Rapids: 435 flood-damaged homes demolished

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) Cedar Rapids officials say crews have demolished 435 homes that were severely damaged in the 2008 flooding.

Officials reported Thursday that those homes are among about 1,200 flood-damaged structures the city expects to ultimately tear down.

The city reports that it demolished 139 structures in 2008 and 2009. It plans to remove about 700 homes this year.

The homes were swamped in June 2008, when the Cedar River flooded, covering about 10 square miles of Cedar Rapids and causing an estimated $6 billion in damage.

Obama boosts Democrat seeking his old Senate seat

CHICAGO (AP) President Barack Obama has been in his hometown of Chicago on a high-stakes mission: keeping his old Senate seat in Democratic hands.

Losing the seat would be a huge embarrassment for Obama and his party, so the president made a Thursday fundraising appearance for the Democratic candidate, Alexi Giannoulias (jeh-NOO'-lee-ehs). Giannoulias, the Illinois state treasurer, is trailing Republican Rep. Mark Kirk in campaign cash.

Obama gave a rousing endorsement of Giannoulias, who has been embroiled in a controversy following the failure of his family's bank in Chicago.

Obama said ``I know his character'' and told supporters ``you can trust him, you can count on him.''

Also while in Chicago, Obama gave a pep talk to workers at a Ford factory and planned a night of high-dollar fundraising for the Democratic Party.

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

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


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