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KLEM News- PM - August 17, 2011

(Orange City) -- School is about to start for many communities and the Sioux County Sheriff's office will step up their patrolling efforts during the hours, before and after, school.  Sioux County sheriff Dan Altena says it is part of their two-year "Saturation Project".  He says Sioux County ranks high for the number of traffic accident fatalities, and in fact the intersection of Highway 75 and Highway 10 is among the five worst dangerous intersections for traffic fatalities in the state. Altena says he wants to make certain students are driving safely.

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Motorists are reminded to obey the laws, and both sides need to come to a complete stop when a school bus has its flashing lights on and stop sign extended.

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Altena says drivers need to be aware that small children don't always use crosswalks, and that small children may appear anywhere.


(LeMars) -- The LeMars City Council has approved September 12th-17th as the 2011 Fall Clean Up.  During that week, LeMars residents are granted an amnesty and will be allowed to dispose of large items and not be subject to disposal fees.  Residents can dispose up to 1000 pounds per household.  Items that will be allowed to be disposed include: furniture, such as couches, chairs, mattresses, carpet, padding, televisions, humidifiers, computers and monitors.  Also items normal to construction and demolition such as windows, doors, sinks, and toilets.  Metal objects such as bikes, mowers, metal posts, wire, swings, gutter, bed springs, and bed frames are also allowed to be disposed. 

Those who wish to dispose of White goods such as refrigerators, ovens, hot water heaters, freezers, air conditioners, microwaves, washers and dryers, dishwashers,trash compactors, furnaces, and fluorescent lights will be required to pay a $10 fee per item.  Normal household garbage, yard waste, tires or hazardous waste will not be allowed to be disposed during the fall clean up.

There will be no curbside pick up for these items.  Residents are being asked to dispose the items directly to the Plymouth County Landfill.  Only residential properties are allowed to participate. Commercial and industrial properties are not eligible.

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa is ranked No. 2 among states where
more than half of graduating high school students took the ACT
college entrance exam.
     A report issued Wednesday says 61 percent of Iowa's 2011 high
school graduates took the ACT, compared with 72 percent in
Minnesota, the state with the highest ACT score.
     Iowa's average composite score was 22.3 out of a possible 36.
Minnesota's average was 22.9. The national average was 21.1.
     The ACT report says 31 percent of Iowa students who took the
test reached benchmark scores that suggested they are ready for
college. That's up a percentage point from 2010. Nationally, 25
percent of this year's graduates tested as college-ready.  LeMars Community Superintendant, Todd Wendt says at least 85 percent of the LCHS graduating seniors choose to pursue a higher level of education.

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Wendt says test results show that LeMars' students are well prepared for post-secondary education.  The average ACT score for LeMars Community is 22.7.

 

(Sioux City) -- Census reports show an aging population, and Mercy Medical Center of Sioux City has modified their emergency rooms to better accomodate senior citizens' special needs. Mercy has focused on three primary areas in relationship to seniors and emergency rooms.  The first is culture.  Unlike the typical ER where staff are trained to treat patients rapidly and view each visit as an isolated incident, all of Mercy ER nurses have completed specialized training that will enable them to address the underlying factors that often play into a senior's overall health before, during and after their visit to the Senior ER. 

Another factor is the physical environment.  Mercy has taken steps to reduce anxiety and confusion, and includes such enhancements as pressure reduction mattresses, non-glare floors, noise reduction, and large-faced clocks and large-print forms.  The third area is with the operations.  The new Senior ER features a highly skilled team of physicians, nurses, pharmacists and social workers focused on the care of seniors - a specialized organization structure dedicated to continually improving the quality of care Mercy provides to seniors.

 
 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A statewide activists group is asking a
member of the Iowa Environmental Protection Commission to resign or
sell his stake in a livestock confinement construction company.
     Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement filed the complaint
against Brent Rastetter on Tuesday, saying he should resign from
the commission or sell his share of Alden-based Quality Ag. The
group claims Rastetter benefits from actions taken by the
commission to reduce regulations and that his serving on the
commission is a conflict of interest.
     Rastetter was appointed to the commission by Gov. Terry
Branstad.
     Branstad spokesman Tim Albrecht says the governor supports
Rastetter and believes he can impartially serve on the commission.
    
    
    
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Governor Branstad has ordered all U.S. and Iowa
flags to be flown at half-staff in honor of a U.S. Navy SEAL team
member who was killed when a helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan.   Flags under state control are to be lowered on Friday for Petty Officer John Tumilson, of Rockford. The 35-year-old Tumilson died Aug. 6 when a rocket-propelled grenade disabled a helicopter carrying 30 Americans and eight Afghans.


 Des Moines, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa attorney general's office has
filed a lawsuit against a Texas buying club claiming the company
used deceptive sales tactics to charge Iowans for unwanted
memberships.
     The lawsuit against Plano, Texas-based Stonebridge Benefit
Services Inc. was filed Tuesday in Polk County District Court in
Des Moines. It claims Stonebridge violated Iowa's Consumer Fraud
Act and Buying Club Memberships law, which requires that membership
sales include specified notices, disclosures and contracts.
     Attorney General Tom Miller says Stonebridge sold more than
50,000 memberships to Iowans generating about $4 million in revenue
without customers' permission. He says consumers had been billed
for months and years for unused memberships that purported to offer
savings on consumer goods, health products and entertainment.
     A telephone message left for Stonebridge was not immediately
returned.


DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Prosecutors in the corruption trial of
the former director of the Iowa Film Office say he's an "inside
guy" who helped fleece Iowa's treasury out of millions of dollars.
Defense attorneys say he's the victim of legislators and
higher-ups, who didn't understand themselves the loopholes that
allowed others to take advantage of the system.
Attorneys gave opening statements on Tuesday in the trial of Tom Wheeler in
Polk County District Court. He's charged with several counts of
fraud, misconduct in office and conspiracy.  The trial is expected to last three weeks.
If convicted, Wheeler could face a decade or more in prison.
    

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa's public employee pension system
lost 4.3 percent in value during the stock market's recent wild
ride.  The system assets dropped to an estimated $22.1 billion on Aug. 5 from
$23.16 billion on June 30.  By comparison, California's main employee pension fund dropped
about 7.5 percent of its value from July 1 through early August. In
Kentucky, the loss was 15 percent. The Florida fund lost 7 percent.
Iowa system spokeswoman Judy Akre says the system's relatively
modest losses are a result of its conservative investment strategy,
"based on a decades-long horizon, not a five-week window."  The Iowa Public Employees Retirement System has about 324,000 members.
     ---

 

   

KLEM News - August 17, 2011

(LeMars) -- The Plymouth County chapter of Pheasants Forever, along with multiple partners, have acquired a 156 acre property, which will be added to the Five Ridge Prairie State Preserve in the Loess Hills region. 

Read more: KLEM News - August 17, 2011

   

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