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Saturday News, December 15

Vaske Arrested For Theft and Burglary

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Sheriff's Department placed under arrest on Friday, Andrew Vaske of Remsen, on warrants issued by the Buena Vista County Sheriff's office.  The charges are two counts of Theft in the second degree and one count of burglary in the third degree.  Bond was set at $25,000.  Vaske was transported to the Plymouth County jail.

 

Museum Manger Display

(Le Mars) -- Jesus is the reason for the season, and the Plymouth County Historical Museum now has on display over 60 different nativity sets, all showing the birth of Christ in a manger. The various nativity sets have been donated by individuals, churches, and organizations and they are of all sizes, and come from all over the world.  Delores Burkard oversees the nativity display.  She says her late husband Ron used to collect different nativity scenes, or he would spend his time in their basement creating nativity sets. She says after his death, she decided to offer some of the collected nativity sets to the museum for display.
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In addition to the many nativity sets, part of the display also features various decorated Christmas trees.  Burkard says her husband loved Christmas and would gather discarded Christmas trees.
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Burkard says she has loaned to the museum at least 15 different nativity sets, with plenty others stored at home in the attic.  Several area churches have contributed to the display by donating nativity sets.  One in particular came from the Le Mars Bible Church.

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Burkard says the museum manger display has grown each year it has been on display.  The museum manager exhibit will continue to be on display through early January.  The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday between 1:00 and 5:00 p.m.  and on Wednesday evenings until 8:00 p.m.


South Dakota Man Sentenced To 10 Years For Lawton Bank Robbery

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A South Dakota man has been sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for robbing banks in Iowa and Nebraska.
Karlis Baisden of Vermillion, S.D., received the prison term earlier this week in Sioux City. He's also been ordered to pay $19,000 in restitution.
The 25-year-old pleaded guilty last year to an attempted bank robbery in Lawton, Iowa, and robbing a bank in Fordyce, Neb.
Baisden was arrested in April 2011 for his connection to the Lawton bank robbery. Officials later seized handwritten letters from Baisden's home where he admitted to robbing the bank in Fordye
in December 2010. The letters also included his plans to rob the Lawton bank.

 

IDOT To Print Fewer Iowa Road Maps

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa transportation officials say they plan to print state road maps just once every two years.
The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports the state Department of Transportation will switch from annual printing to a two-year cycle in 2016.
The agency also plans to drop its usual print of 1.4 million maps to about 600,000 maps for the current budget year because of funding restraints.
The agency's chief says he asked Governor Terry Branstad on Thursday to increase map production budgeting in 2014 and 2015 to allow for more map printing before the switch.
The DOT also says it will go on a two-year printing cycle in 2016 for the agency's separate transportation map for bicyclists.

 

Council Bluffs Woman Encouraged Son To Fight

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say a Council Bluffs woman has been accused of encouraging her 13-year-old son to fight a schoolmate.
Thirty-one-year-old Alisha Hazen was arrested Thursday. She faces charges on felony child endangerment, serious assault and contributing to delinquency of a minor.
Police say they received complaints about a YouTube video that allegedly shows Hazen encouraging her son to punch a 12-year-old boy at Kreft Elementary School in November. Police say Hazen later
punched the other boy in the face after her son was struck in the face and head.
The newspaper reports the video has received several hundred views.
Hazen was released from jail after posting a $2,000 bond. Court records do not list an attorney.


Marion Man Sentenced

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - An eastern Iowa man already convicted on federal fraud charges has been sentenced to more than two years in prison for selling his pain pills for candy.
Donald Washburn of Marion was given the sentence earlier this week in Cedar Rapids. The time will run concurrently to his separate sentence of more than 11 years in prison on various
federal fraud charges.
Prosecutors say the 63-year-old sold his prescription oxycodone medication to other inmates for candy bars while he was held in the Linn County Jail awaiting sentencing on the investment fraud case.
Washburn was convicted in February of bilking investors out of more than $800,000 in phony gambling and mining ventures.

 

 

   

Friday Afternoon News, December 14

Le Mars Ambulance Responds To More Calls

(Le Mars) -- The number of calls the Le Mars Ambulance Service has responded to this year is greater than the number of calls from last year.  According to the quarterly report, the Le Mars Ambulance Service had 237 calls from September 1st to November 30th of this year.  A year ago, during the same quarter, the Le Mars Ambulance responded to 155 calls.  Year to date numbers show the ambulance service has been called to offer aid 861 times, where as a year ago figures show the ambulance responded to a total of 683 calls.  The numbers indicate an increase of 26 percent.  During the quarter, the new 2012 Life-Line ambulance was delivered and placed into service.  The 2004 unit was traded-in and the 2008 ambulance was transferred to become the back-up unit.

 

Branstad Announces State-Federal Exchange For Health Insurance

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad has informed the federal government that Iowa will create a state-federal partnership exchange to help Iowans buy health insurance, a requirement of the federal health care law.
Branstad sent the letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on Friday. That was the deadline for states to declare whether they will pursue a state-based exchange, accept a
federal takeover or seek some kind of combined approach.
Branstad cited the cost of a state-based exchange as a key factor in his decision to reject that option. He says the state-federal model will allow Iowa to keep some control over its health care system and minimize costs.

 

Accountant Suggests To Save Money Now Because of Financial Cliff

(Des Moines) -- An Iowa financial consultant says we should start setting aside more savings in case that so-called fiscal cliff can't be avoided by Congress. Jeff Strawhacker, a longtime C-P-A in West Des Moines, says he's not optimistic our national leaders will come up with a valid compromise plan to avoid the large, looming tax increases before the year is out.
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Federal taxes could be taking a much larger bite from our paychecks as of January 1st and Strawhacker says if you're not already saving money for a rainy day, it's a wise practice to start, fiscal cliff or not.

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Strawhacker, who focuses his accounting business on financial consulting and tax planning, says there's plenty of partisan bickering in Washington, so he's none too confident in members of Congress.

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The "fiscal cliff" involves a series of 500-billion dollars in tax increases and 200-billion in budget cuts which are scheduled to automatically take effect on or around January 1st. Without action by Congress and the White House, some analysts fear the financial jolt could prompt a recession.

 

Administrative Judge Must Testify As To Pressured By Warden

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Supreme Court says an administrative law judge must testify about whether pressure from a warden influenced her decision to punish an inmate who committed
assault.
The court ruled Friday that Iowa Department of Corrections administrative law judge Deb Edwards must comply with a watchdog's subpoena to answer questions about her discipline of inmate Randy
Linderman.
The department had limited Edwards' testimony in an investigation by the state ombudsman's office, arguing that judges cannot be questioned about their decision-making process.
Edwards had found Linderman guilty of assaulting a guard and imposed a 180-day loss-of-earned-time penalty, twice as harsh as state policy allowed.
The court says it is troubled by an e-mail sent by the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility warden to Edwards asking for stiff sanctions before her ruling.


   

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