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Friday Afternoon News, Sept. 6

Collins Seeks Re-Election To Le Mars Community School Board

(Le Mars) -- Local school board elections are scheduled for Tuesday, September 10th, and the Le Mars Community School District has four positions to be filled.  Today, we focus our attention on Chris Collins.  Collins has been a member of the Le Mars Community School Board for the past 15 years.  Collins is an incumbent and will face Mark Hemmingson in the district 3 and only race for the Le Mars Communitiy Board of Education.  Collins says voters can count on his experience.

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As we have heard from other school board candidates say, school funding was a major issue during the time Collins has been a director on the school board.

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Collins says the local school district is in much better financial shape today, and he says many of the programs that had to be cut in the past are now being brought back as part of the Le Mars Community school educational program.

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Collins points to the completion of Phase 1 and Phase 2 as some of the accomplishments that occurred while he was a director.  He says he still has goals for the school district, and many of those goals include the inclusion of technology.

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Candidates Seek School Board Positions

(Le Mars) -- As mentioned, the other Plymouth County public school districts will also hold their school board elections on Tuesday.  Akron-Westfield has three positions to fill with three candidates running unopposed.  Nicholas Schoenfelder is seeking the position for District 1, Phillip Parks is running for District 2, and Bobby Walrod is seeking the school board seat for district 3.  Hinton voters have the opportunity to decide between three candidates for two positions.  Those running for the Hinton Community School Board include; James Binneboese, Robert Held, and John Reintzel.  The Remsen-Union public school district has six people seeking three at-large positions.  The candidates running for school board at Remsen-Union include: Melissa Harnack, Cheri Nitzschke, Michael Sparr, Travis Tentinger, Theresa Van Dam, and Robin Weiler. Kingsley-Pierson voters have the opportunity to vote for two at-large positions, but Scott Bohle will be the only name featured on the ballot.


Sioux City To Retain Glass Recycling Program

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Sioux City leaders won't be ending curbside glass recycling.
Discussions about ending the practice started in June after the city's contracted trash collector said its vendor for recyclables, First Star Recycling in Omaha, Neb., said it no longer wanted the glass. Glass had dropped in price and was costly to handle because it breaks and contaminates other recyclable products.
The City Council subsequently took two votes to end curbside glass recycling but now won't take the third vote.
First Star Recycling has added a line to separate the glass, which will be going to Ripple Glass in Kansas City, Mo., for use in making insulation and bottles.
Mayor Bob Scott said Thursday that "nothing will change, and we will continue as we have."


Iowa State University Student Has Tuberculosis

AMES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa State student is being treated for tuberculosis that was caught during screening required for incoming international students.
The university said in a website posting on Friday that the student lives on campus but will remain isolated until officials approve the individual's return to classes.
The student's name and other personal and school information are not being released.
People who have had close, prolonged contact with the student will be contacted by Homeward/Story County Public Health for screenings.
Allan Lynch of the Iowa Department of Public Health says tuberculosis is not easily transmitted in schools or the workplace.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says tuberculosis usually affects the lungs but also can affect other parts of the body, including the brain or kidneys.


Noble Spoke To Branstad About Public Safety Position

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa's new public safety department chief says he spoke with Gov. Terry Branstad about taking the job before the former commissioner resigned.
Commissioner Larry Noble - a longtime department veteran who resigned the top job last year- told reporters Friday that he talked with Branstad before Brian London offered his resignation Tuesday night.
London resigned after an 11-month tenure that was marked by lagging department morale and included questions involving the governor's speeding vehicle.
Noble declined to comment on London's tenure but praised the department. He says he's happy to serve.
Noble says fired Division of Criminal Investigation special agent Larry Hedlund deserves "due process." Hedlund has sued London and two others. He contends he was punished for filing a complaint in April about the governor's speeding vehicle.




Friday News, September 6

Leonard Files Nomination Papers For Re-election

(Le Mars) -- Le Mars City Councilman John Leonard has submitted his nomination papers seeking re-election to the city council.  Leonard represents the city's citizens living in Ward 1.  Leonard was first elected to the city council in 2005.  The only other candidate to file nomination papers is Ken Nelson.  Nelson represents Ward 3 and has been on the city council since 1998.  Mayor Dick Kirchoff and Councilman Rex Knapp are up for re-election.  So far, no other candidate has submitted nomination papers. September 19th is the deadline to file nomination papers and the election is scheduled for November 5th.


Kommes Seeks Re-election To School Board

(Le Mars) -- School Board elections are scheduled for Tuesday, September 10th.  The Le Mars Community School District has four board positions to be decided.  In District 2 is Scott Kommes, an executive with Wells Enterprises.  Kommes has completed his first term and is seeking a second term.  Kommes is running unopposed. He says community involvement is the reason why he chose to run for the school board.

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Kommes says he would like to see the school board be able to devote more attention to the
education of the students.  However, much to his surprise, school financing consumes much
of the attention for the school board, especially so when the state doesn't act in a timely manner for establishing the educational budget.

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Kommes says the Le Mars Community School Board can be proud of its many accomplishments.

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Le Mars Mainstreet To Host Workshop

(Le Mars) -- Le Mars will serve as the host city for the State of Iowa Main Street program in November, and in so doing, the Le Mars Mainstreet Organization will offer a workshop opportunity for Le Mars businesses.  Representatives from 49 different communities will be in Le Mars for the conference.  Mary Reynolds, Le Mars Mainstreet Organization coordinator says the workshop will teach attendees how we can accelerate the shift from management to leadership at a moment's notice?  What are the five steps which will unlock your creative power?  and What six change tools will yield 63 different ways to view anything in your path?  The workshop will feature Iowa artist David Williamson.  Williamson believes creativity is a strategic tool in today's economy, and you will leave the November conference confident in your ability to collaborate and create at new levels.  The workshop is scheduled for November 6th and will take place in the lower level of Primebank.  The workshop fee is $25 per person.  It will be an all day workshop and specific times will be announced later.


County Road C-44 To Open Through Merrill

(Merrill) -- Good news for residents living in and around Merrill.  The Plymouth County Secondary Roads Department has announced County Road C-44 from K-30 to K-49 will be open beginning Monday, September 9th with no restrictions.  That means you will now be able to cross U-S Highway 75 and be able to drive to the downtown businesses without a detour.  However, the Iowa Department of Transportation is still working on Highway 75 and the traffic control cones will remain in place as construction is expected to continue for several weeks.


More Construction Planned For County Road C-38

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Secondary Roads Department has also announced a road closure scheduled to start on Monday and continuing through next Friday.  County road C-38 from K-42 to Key Avenue will be closed in order to replace a small piece of pavement west of the Burlington Northern Railroad on C-38.  County engineer Tom Rohe says the construction project involving C-38 and K-42 on the northern edge of the town of Merrill near Plymouth Energy ethanol plant and Plymouth Oil is nearing completion.

I-Smile Receives $1.8 Million Grant

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa public health officials have received a $1.8 million federal grant to help ensure children and some adults get adequate dental care.
The money from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will be used to
expand a school-based dental program called I-Smile Dental Home Initiative and to monitor
and evaluate the state's dental public health program.
I-Smile helps Iowa's children connect with dentists who provide treatment and
evaluation. Other health professionals including dental hygienists, physicians, nurse
practitioners, registered nurses, physician assistants, and dietitians are a part of a
larger network providing oral screenings, education, guidance, and preventive services as
Since I-Smile began, 62 percent more low-income Iowa children have received dental
Iowa is one of 18 states to receive CDC funding.


Branstad To Visit Japan And India

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad is heading to Japan and India on a trade mission.
Branstad departs Friday. He will first go to Japan for the 2013 Midwest U.S.-Japan
Association Conference in Tokyo. Then he'll continue to India for a six-day trade trip.
The Iowa Economic Development Authority is organizing the trip, which will feature
stops in several cities to meet with business and government leaders.
Iowa Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham will join Branstad on the trip.
Branstad's travel will be paid for by a foundation associated with the Iowa Economic
Development Authority.  His airfare is estimated at $6,400 and lodging is estimated to be
approximately $3,500.  Last evening, Governor Branstad was in Hull, for the 35th anniversary of the Foreign Candy Company.


Kenyan Scientist To Receive World Food Prize

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A scientist from Kenya who helped discover a product that reduces the development of a toxic mold in corn will get a $10,000 award from the World Food Prize.
Charity Kawira Mutegi was named Thursday the recipient of the Norman Borlaug Award
for Field Research and Application. It was created in 2011 with a $1 million Rockefeller Foundation endowment.
Mutegi, who is 38, made a major breakthrough in combating aflatoxin, a corn mold fatal to animals and people consuming it.
Mutegi's research into a 2005 outbreak in Kenya that killed 125 people led to the development of a non-toxic strain of the fungus. It can be spread on soil before a crop flowers preventing aflatoxin from developing.
Mutgi will be presented with the award on Oct. 16 in Des Moines.


New Communications To Review Drug Concerns

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa officials have launched a communications tool that aims to inform residents about new and emerging drug concerns.
The Governor's Office of Drug Control Policy says the service will provide updates via a monthly newsletter. Special alerts may be issued via social media and local news.
Policy Director Steve Lukan says it's important for Iowa residents to get timely
information about the growing number of new synthetic drugs and other modified substances
of abuse.
Residents can sign up for the monthly newsletter online.

Three People Arrested For Des Moines Warehouse Fire

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Three people have been arrested in connection with a warehouse fire near downtown Des Moines.
Authorities say 20-year-old Kristopher Duff and two 17-year-old boys, all of Des
Moines, have been charged with second-degree arson in connection with the Aug. 29 fire at a recycling company.
The Des Moines Fire Department and Des Moines Police Department say they conducted interviews with several witnesses and suspects before making any arrests.
The suspects were taken to the Polk County Jail for processing. The two 17-year-old boys were taken to a juvenile facility.




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