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Monday News, August 3

Plymouth County Fair Attendance Higher Than Last Year

(Le Mars) -- The 74th edition of the Plymouth County Fair is now in the history books.  Fair officials say the attendance was slighter higher from last year, but not a record breaker.  Plymouth County Fair Board vice president Rich Benson says the weather was near perfect for the "5 Best Days of Summer".

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The fair board official says the total attendance from last year' fair was at 100,150.  Benson says several people had expressed positive comments regarding this year's fair.

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Benson says the Plymouth County Fair is fortunate to draw so many visitors from other counties, as well as other states.

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Schroeder Says Good-bye To His Last Fair

(Le Mars) -- This marks the final fair for Plymouth County Fair Board president Tony Schroeder.  Schroeder has been on the fair board for 36 years, and has made the decision to step aside when his term expires in November.  Schroeder says when he first started on the fair board he had the opportunity to vote on whether the fair should bring the round barn to the fairgrounds.

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Schroeder credits former fair directors for having great vision for the fair.

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The fair board president says he will remember most the growth of the fair

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Schroeder hopes for continued success for future fairs, and he praises the community spirit.

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Chain Saw Wood Carvings Auction Raises More Than $20,000

(Le Mars) -- The traditional county fair auction that sold wood carvings, milk cans, belt buckles, toy trucks, and a quilt brought a total of $20,650.  The auction serves as a fund raiser for the fair.  This year's quilt made by Jeri Dreckman sold for $6300.  Dreckman spent 425 hours creating the quilt.

 

 

 

 

 

Life Skills Quilt Auction Sets New Record

(Le Mars) -- Speaking of quilts, the Life Skill Training Center annual quilt auction set a new record this year.  Shelly Thomson, Life Skill's Marketing and Development Director explains.

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As for the other fair fund raiser for Life Skills, Thomson says the Bossy Bingo was done within ten minutes.

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The winner was Kendra Ruden with the winning plot at S-5. Thompson says Ruden will receive $1,100 and Life Skills earning $3,550.

 

 

 

 

Trump Wins Plymouth County Fair Straw Poll

(Le Mars) -- The results of the Plymouth County Republican straw poll are now known.  County Republican party chairman, Don Kass says 800 people voted during the five days of the fair.  Coming out on top with 34.5 percent, or 276 votes was corporate executive Donald Trump.  Second place finisher went to Wisconsin governor Scott Walker with 13 percent with 104 votes.  Louisiana governor Bobby Jindahl secured 10 percent with 80 votes, and Dr. Ben Carson earned fourth place with 8.8 percent with 70 votes.  The rest of the republican field featured Jeb Bush with 60 votes, or 7.5 percent. Texas Senator Ted Cruz with 42 votes and 5.25 percent. Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee received 31 votes at 3.9 percent.  Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, who made an appearance at the fair, received just 30 votes at 3.9 percent.  Kentucky Senator Rand Paul gained 28 votes at 3.6 percent.  Former Texas Governor, Rick Perry, won 24 votes at 3.6 percent.  Florida Senator, Marco Rubio received 22 votes at 3.5 percent. New Jersey governor, Chris Christie had 14 votes, Carly Fiorina also received 14 votes, Ohio governor John Kasich had 10 votes, and South Carolina Senator Lindsay Graham came in last place with just four votes.  County party chair Don Kass says the poll indicates a dissatisfaction for "politics as usual" and the poll shows that people are just plain angry at the Washington establishment.

 

 

 

 

Some People Wonder Whether Iowa Politics Is Working?

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa elected officials pride themselves on working in a politically divided government that still gets things done. But after a combative budget process, capped with several vetoes by Governor Terry Branstad, some are questioning how well the system is working.
Simply put, is Iowa politics becoming more like Washington?
Branstad has spent weeks defending his decision to veto several budget compromises negotiated by the Democratic-controlled Senate and the Republican-majority House. The governor says he's not concerned about his relationships with lawmakers or ability to get legislation passed in the future.
Branstad says officials dealt with worse situations during the farm crisis of the

1980s.
But Democratic Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal says relations between Branstad and lawmakers are near "an all-time low."


 

 

   

Saturday News, August 1

Santorum Visits Plymouth County Fair

(Le Mars) -- Republican Presidential hopeful Rick Santorum visited the Plymouth County Fair early Friday evening.  Santorum, a former Senator from Pennsylvania, won the Iowa caucus four years ago.  Santorum says since Iowa has dropped the straw poll, things have changed from four years ago when he was seeking the position of president, and he has to work even harder this time to win the support of Iowans.

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Santorum, a staunch pro-lifer, says the recent undercover video showing officials of Planned Parenthood describing how they sell organs from aborted fetuses, has made him sick.

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This time around, Santorum is trailing in the polls, and may not be included in the initial Republican debate.  The republican candidate says he is not worried about the polls, but rather would like to spend time visiting with Iowans on a personal basis.

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During the last election, Santorum was able to win the support of Iowans by going door-to-door and establishing a personal relationship with the voters.  He says that is still his philosophy in order to again win Iowa.

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Ethanol Forum Held At Fairgrounds

(Le Mars) -- An ethanol forum was held at the Plymouth County Fairgrounds Friday afternoon. Iowa 4th District Congressman Steve King spoke at that forum.  King says the E-P-A extended their timetable for accepting comments on the Renewable Fuels Standard. He says the Environmental Protection Agency is not following the law as stipulated by Congress.

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King says if farmers and the ethanol industry don't have the renewable fuels standard, then ethanol may be shut out of the fuels market.

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King says the E-P-A's delay in the final decision of the renewable fuels standard is costing several investors millions of dollars.

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Investigators Still Looking For Clues 21 Years After Murder

GRINNELL, Iowa (AP) - The mother of a Grinnell College student slain nearly 23 years ago says she's trying to remain optimistic that investigators will solve the case.
Twenty-one-year-old Tammy Jo Zywicki's body was found in September 1992 near Springfield, Missouri, a month after her car was found in Illinois. She'd been driving back to the central Iowa school from her New Jersey home.
Her mother, JoAnn Zywicki, told the Iowa City Press-Citizen that she'd been hopeful since enlisting the aid of the Philadelphia-based Vidocq Society, which is known for its interest in cold cases. But she says budget cuts are making it difficult for the investigation to progress in Illinois.
Illinois State Patrol Master Sgt. Jeff Padilla says the budget hasn't been cut and that the Zywicki case remains a high priority.

 

 

 

 

Patrol Trooper That Negotiated Contract For Hand Guns Hired By Gun Company

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa Department of Public Safety employee who helped draft a proposal to buy handguns for officers was soon hired by Smith & Wesson, which later won the contract.
Ken Paradise is a central figure in a messy effort to buy new handguns, which has become a two-year headache for the department.
Emails obtained by The Associated Press under the open records law show Paradise was involved in 2013 in formulating a request for proposal for the contract. He tipped off a Smith & Wesson salesman about when the proposal would likely be released.
A spokesman says the solicitation was removed from the website within 24 hours after the department learned Paradise had a pending job application with the vendor.
The company hired Paradise soon after he left state employment.

 

 

 

 

Lottery Tickets Stolen

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) - A 25-year-old Clear Lake man has been given five years in prison for stealing Iowa lottery tickets.
The Mason City Globe Gazette reports that Tyler Meuer was sentenced on Tuesday. Court records say he'd pleaded guilty to theft, unauthorized use of a credit card and to a weapons charge. Prosecutors dropped other charges in exchange for Meuer's pleas.
The charges stem from crimes committed on May 10 in Clear Lake.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Affairs To Get More Money For Veteran Care

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Department of Veterans Affairs officials say funding of adult day care and other skilled and nonskilled services for Nebraska and western Iowa veterans has been bolstered by belt-tightening and will continue through Sept. 30, past the scheduled cutoff.
The VA's Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System said Friday that it will pay for all current authorizations for those services for eligible veterans enrolled in VA health care.
Because of funding shortfalls, the system had planned to stop paying for those services provided by community agencies as of Saturday. But the system says its fiscal management team found ways to control expenses so the system could continue paying for the services. In addition, President Barack Obama is expected to sign a new funding bill covering the VA shortfall.


 

Presidential disaster signed for Iowa June storm damage

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Nineteen Iowa counties will be getting federal help in their recovery from severe storms last month that delivered high wind, tornadoes, heavy rain, hail and thunderstorms

A statement from the White House released Friday says President Barack Obama signed a disaster declaration to help share the cost of emergency work, repair and replacement of facilities including roads and bridges with state and local government agencies and some nonprofit organizations.

The counties included are Allamakee, Appanoose, Butler, Clayton, Dallas, Davis, Des Moines, Guthrie, Howard, Jefferson, Lee, Lucas, Marion, Mitchell, Monroe, Warren, Wayne, Winneshiek, and Wright.

A state preliminary damage assessment found the weather system in Iowa June 20th through 25th caused more than $5 million in damage.

 

 

 

 

Judge Wants Suspect To Undergo Psychiatric  Evaluation

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A judge wants a Sioux City man charged with first-degree murder to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

District Judge Steven Andreasen has ordered 35-year-old Isack Abdinur to be evaluated to determine if he has a mental disorder that would keep him from understanding proceedings in the case. The judge says he based his order on information provided by county jail staff and Abdinur's attorney.

Abdinur has pleaded not guilty in the fatal stabbing of 43-year-old Cornelia Stead in her Sioux City apartment in June. Police say the two were romantic partners.

The Sioux City Journal reports Abdinur's trial was set to begin in September but the evaluation order will push back the date.

   

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