Thursday News, October 25
Absentee Voting On the Increase For Plymouth County
(Le Mars) -- With less than two weeks before election, Plymouth County Auditor Stacy Feldman says the county has had more than 4000 absentee ballot requests. Feldman says it is the most number of requested absentee ballots for an election.
Iowa is one state that allows for early voting, and the Plymouth County auditor offers her reasons as to why people choose to vote early.
For those people wishing to cast their vote on election day, Feldman says the polling places basically have remained the same as they were for the June primary, with one notable exception...those residents living in the city of Struble, Elgin Township, and America township will now vote at the Courthouse Annex building, instead of the Le Mars Public Library. Feldman says if you haven't voted since the last general election, then you will see some changes.
Aside from the Presidential, Congressional and state-wide races, Plymouth County voters will have only one other contested race...and that is for Extension Council. Election day is scheduled for November 6th.
County Road C-70 To Have Detour Due To Railroad Repair
(Le Mars) -- Plymouth County Secondary Road Department is reporting that County road C-70 from Highway 75 to Imperial Avenue will be closed on Thursday as the Union Pacific railroad officials will perform crossing repairs on the C-70 crossing. The detour will be north on Highway 75 to Hinton, east from Hinton on County road C-60 to K-42, and then south on K-42 to C-70.
Burn Ban Continues Despite Recent Rains
(Le Mars) -- Despite the recent rains, Plymouth County and many of the western Iowa counties remain in a burn ban. Both the Le Mars Fire Department and the Akron Fire Department had to respond to illegal burns on Wednesday. Le Mars Fire chief Dave Schipper says the burn ban will probably stay in place until we get some snow cover.
The local fire chief says many buildings and piles are still quite dry.
ABC News Wants Lawsuit To Be Held In Federal Court
NORTH SIOUX CITY, S.D. (AP) - Lawyers for ABC News are asking to have a defamation lawsuit against the company filed by a South Dakota beef processing plant transferred from circuit court to
Beef Products Inc. sued ABC News Inc. for defamation over its coverage of a meat product. The company alleges that the network created an inaccurate impression that the product is unsafe.
BPI is seeking $1.2 billion in damages.
The lawsuit was originally filed in circuit court in South Dakota's Union County in September. Lawyers for the broadcasting company want the suit moved to federal district court in South
Dakota because it says the parties involved are from different states.
A lawyer for BPI didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.
Le Mars Businesses Gear Up For Halloween Trick and Treating
(Le Mars) -- It's time for your kids to load up on sugar...it's time for trick-or-treating in Le Mars. This weekend the trick-or-treating fun begins with the businesses opening their doors to the masked kiddos. Jenni Smit, Le Mars Chamber of Commerce Vice President, says multiple things are going on for kids Saturday morning.
Then at 11am the official trick-or-treating begins at the Olsen Cultural Event Center. A couple dozen businesses that are located away from downtown will all be set up right there at the Events Center. After making the rounds there, kids and their parents can proceed from there to go door-to-door downtown.
Jenni added that there's a special treat for kids at the library as well.
Residential trick-or-treating is on Halloween night in Le Mars.
Fired Bank Employee Says He Won't Return To Work
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A 68-year-old Des Moines man fired from Wells Fargo Home Mortgage over a minor crime 50 years ago says he won't accept an offer to return to work unless the company changes
its background checks policy.
Richard Eggers says the policy discriminates against low-level workers. He was fired in July for putting a cardboard cutout of a dime in a washing machine at a Laundromat in 1963.
Banks have been firing employees like Eggers since new federal banking and mortgage employment guidelines were enacted. The regulations are aimed at bank employees guilty of identity theft or
Wells Fargo spokeswoman Vickee Adams says the company is disappointed Eggers rejected the job offer and didn't recognize its "responsibility to apply the law equitably and fairly" for all employees.
Landfill Fire May Be More Expensive Than Previously Estimated
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A city official says the damage from the Iowa City landfill fire is worse than expected.
Project engineer Dan Scott says that the assessment is continuing, but "it's not good news."
He estimated the total damage costs at $5 million.
Crews on Wednesday used a remote-controlled camera to inspect underground piping. Scott says at least one 600-foot pipe will likely need to be replaced rather than repaired.
He says it's still not clear whether the city insurance policy will cover any of the damage.
The fire began May 26 on roughly 7 1/2 acres, primarily in an unused portion. The fire spread to a layer of shredded tires used for drainage. The fire cause hasn't been determined.
Iowa Parks Hope To Make Improvements
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Armed with results from a user survey, state park supporters intend to proceed with a public-private effort to improve Iowa's 87 state parks.
The Iowa Parks Foundation said at a Capitol news conference on Wednesday that its mail survey of more than 1,200 Iowans found 79 percent of those who responded said they'd visited a state park in
the past two years. And 74 percent indicated the desire for more
trails in the parks.
Foundation leaders and Gov. Terry Branstad say it's too early to put a dollar figure on the work. But state parks division head Kevin Szcodronski says the total easily could run into hundreds of millions of dollars.
The foundation will team with an architectural and planning firm on plans for getting the parks in top condition.