Saturday News, September 5
Barricades Place In Front Of Building For Safety
(Le Mars) -- People walking in the downtown district perhaps have noticed barricades that have been put in place in front of a vacant building located on the east side of Central Avenue. The placement of the barricades has led to several questions and rumors regarding the structure of the building. City building and code enforcement officer Jason Vacera says the public doesn't need to worry, the structure is sound, and not in any danger of collapsing. Vacera says the barricades are there to keep people safe from the restoration of the building's façade project. Vacera says the building is part of the 20 building CDBG grant project, but since it is currently a vacant building, contractors didn't want to have the public interfere with their work.
Vacera says there is nothing to the rumors about the building structure being unsafe.
Northey To Visit Plymouth County
(Des Moines) -- Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey will be visiting Ida, O'Brien, and Plymouth Counties on Tuesday, September 8th. Northey will make an appearance in Le Mars Tuesday evening as he will address the Plymouth County Farm Bureau annual meeting. Northey will speak at 7:00 p.m. The Plymouth County Farm Bureau annual meeting will be held in Century Hall at the Plymouth County Fairgrounds.
Attorney General Says He Can't Investigate Planned Parenthood
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller says since Iowa has no laws governing the transfer of fetal tissue his office has no authority to investigate abortion providers about the practice of donating tissue for research.
Republican lawmakers delivered a letter in August to Miller asking him to investigate abortion practices.
The lawmakers wanted to know how abortion providers dispose of aborted tissue and if any fetal organs are sold or donated.
Miller told them in a response Friday federal authorities oversee the transfer of donated fetal tissue.
Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, which operates 13 Iowa clinics, voluntarily offered answers, saying it has never accepted donated fetal tissue for research.
Controversy emerged with the release of secretly recorded videos of Planned Parenthood officials discussing aborted fetal organs provided for research.
Marshalltown Woman Charged With Animal Neglect And Child Endangerment
MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) - Police have charged a Marshalltown school board member with child endangerment and animal neglect after finding numerous pets in her home, including two dead cats.
Someone called police Tuesday to express concern about the living conditions of school board member Kendall Derby's 13-year-old child.
Police say when officers arrived, they found eight cats and two dogs as well as animal feces throughout the home. Two of the cats were dead.
Department of Human Services workers have placed the child with a family friend.
Police charged Derby on Thursday. She was released from jail Friday after paying a $6,700 bond.
When approached by a reporter in the jail building, she entered a restroom. She emerged at the request of a deputy and declined to comment.
District officials say they can't force Derby to resign from the school board.
New University Of Iowa President - Select Dismisses Faculty Doubts
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - University of Iowa president-select J. Bruce Harreld has erased doubts about his qualifications before, but this time could be an even tougher sell.
Many faculty, staff and students are revolting against Harreld's appointment as Iowa's president, arguing the businessman was the least qualified out of four finalists.
In 1995, many were skeptical when IBM recruited Harreld from the fast-growing Boston Market restaurant chain to be its top strategist. Critics asked why the technology company put its future in the hands of a chicken salesman.
But according to Harreld and former colleagues, his 13-year tenure was successful. He's credited with helping turn around IBM by working with teams to explore new business opportunities that eventually brought in billions in revenue.
A former colleague says Harreld will succeed by listening and leading.
New University Of Iowa Not Interested In Tenure
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A spokeswoman says the University of Iowa's president-select will not seek a tenured professorship despite contract language giving him that right.
A contract released Friday shows J. Bruce Harreld was granted a tenured position in the College of Business "subject to the recommendation of the faculty" that he could assume after he left the presidency. He would be paid consistent with the highest paid professor in the college.
The provision was surprising because Harreld said Tuesday he wasn't interested in receiving tenure, a perk common for university presidents. The regents also hadn't granted a tenured position to Bill Ruud when he was hired as University of Northern Iowa president in 2013.
UI spokeswoman Jeneane Beck said Harreld didn't make tenure a condition of his employment and wouldn't seek the position.
Canoe Team Travel From Gulf Of Mexico To Artic
ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) - A team from Minnesota and Iowa has completed a 5,200-mile canoe journey from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic.
The six-member Rediscovering North America crew finished their 244-day expedition at noon Tuesday in the town of Kugluktuk, in the Canadian Arctic province of Nunavut.
Cathedral High School graduate Winchell Delano told the St. Cloud Times that they're in good health and plan to return to Minnesota on Saturday.
Winchell says they finished the last stretch - a 12-mile length of the Coppermine River that rounded a peninsula and entered Coronation Gulf, a finger of the Arctic Ocean that reaches into Nunavut - in rain, cold and 20-to-25 mph winds.
The crew was ready to paddle through Sept. 30 if necessary. They launched January 2th. Delano says they paddled 199 of the 244 days.