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Tuesday Afternoon News, August 11

Grassley to Hold Town Hall Meeting In Le Mars

(Washington) -- U-S Senator Chuck Grassley has announced he will be holding a town hall meeting in Le Mars scheduled for Wednesday, August 26th.  The town hall meeting will be held at the Floyd Valley Hospital conference room beginning at 4:00 p.m. and will continue until 5:00 p.m.

 

 

 

Governor Bobby Jindahl To Campaign In Le Mars

(Le Mars) -- Louisiana Governor and Republican presidential candidate Bobby Jindahl has announced he will make a campaign stop in the "Ice Cream Capital of the World".  Jindahl plans to stop in Le Mars on Tuesday, August 18th beginning at 12:00 noon.  Jindahl will appear at the 4 Brothers restaurant.

 

 

 

 

School Superintendent Suspended

TREYNOR, Iowa (AP) - State officials have suspended the license of the Treynor schools superintendent for 30 days, saying he should not have let his son work unsupervised as a custodian for the district after the boy was accused of inappropriate sexual conduct.
The Board of Educational Examiners also ruled last week that a letter of reprimand would be given to Superintendent Kevin Elwood.
Elwood was accused of two violations of Iowa Educational Code, including failing to make reasonable efforts to protect the health and safety of students. His attorney didn't return a call Tuesday.
In September 2013 Elwood's son, Kreighton Elwood, pleaded guilty to two counts of assault and one of false imprisonment. He was sentenced to 14 days in jail, two years of probation and ordered to register as a sex offender.

 

 

 

 

Des Moines School District And Former Superintendent Reach Settlement

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Des Moines Public Schools and its insurance company will pay a former superintendent $350,000 to settle a lawsuit over sexually explicit emails sent by the superintendent.
District spokeswoman Amanda Lewis said Monday that the district expected to win the lawsuit filed by Nancy Sebring, but its insurance company wanted to settle to avoid additional litigation expenses.
Half the money will go to Sebring's attorneys. The district's insurance company will pay the majority of the costs.
Sebring filed a lawsuit after sexually explicit emails sent from her district-issued email account and electronics were made public in May 2012. Sebring's invasion-of-privacy lawsuit argued the emails were personal and not subject to Iowa's open records laws. The district said they were public records.

 

 

 

 

 

Work Release Escape

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - Officials say they have arrested a man accused of failing to return to a residential work release facility in Council Bluffs.
Twenty-eight-year-old Andrew Eugene Maybee was arrested Monday in Omaha.
The Iowa Department of Corrections says it placed Maybee on escape status Saturday after he failed to return to the work release facility from a job.
Maybee is serving a 25-year sentence for several convictions, including willful injury causing serious injury and going armed with intent. He was transferred to work release on June 4.

 

 

 

 

Fatal Aircraft Crash

DAKOTA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Authorities are investigating what caused a small helicopter-like aircraft to crash in Iowa, killing the pilot and injuring his passenger.
The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office says the gyrocopter was traveling near the small community of Dakota City around 7 p.m. Sunday when it crashed. Its wreckage was found in the front yard of a residence.
The pilot, 58-year-old Larry Erickson, of Humboldt, was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. A passenger in the aircraft, 65-year-old Mike Chapman, also of Humboldt, was taken to a hospital in Des Moines.
A gyrocopter is an experimental aircraft that resembles a helicopter. Authorities say an initial investigation indicates the aircraft suddenly lost altitude, hit a tree and crashed.
The National Traffic Safety Bureau is investigating the crash.

 

 

 

 

Tall Corn Responsible For Accident

SUMNER, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say tall corn growing near a northern Iowa city may have contributed to a fatal, two-vehicle crash.
The Bremer County Sheriff's Office says the two cars were traveling in different directions Monday morning when they collided at an intersection about five miles outside of Sumner.
One driver, 44-year-old Dawn Novak, of Sumner, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other driver, 47-year-old Logan Huebner, also of Sumner, received minor injuries along with a passenger in his vehicle. Both were taken to a local hospital.
Authorities say tall corn may have contributed to the collision, but they did not release additional information. The crash remains under investigation.

 

 

 

Alliant Energy Looks At Solar

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Iowa's second largest power company has abandoned a stance that critics say improperly slowed the adoption of solar energy across the state.
Over the last year, Alliant Energy had told schools and municipalities that it would not allow net metering for rooftop power generating systems financed by third-party solar companies.
That meant customers would not be credited for excess energy generated during peak sun times and returned to the grid, which made many of the projects economically unfeasible. In response, customers delayed, downsized and shelved solar projects meant to reduce their energy costs and impact on the environment.
Alliant changed course in a legal filing last week after critics told the Iowa Utilities Board the utility's position was illegal.
Solar advocates say the change means many projects can move forward.

 

 

 

Fire Fighters Find Body

BELLEVUE, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say firefighters have found the body of a 94-year-old man during a blaze at his home in eastern Iowa.
The fire was reported about 8:15 a.m. Monday in Bellevue. Firefighters were told when they arrived that someone was still inside, so they went in the smoke-filled house and soon found the homeowner's body. Fire Chief Kent Clasen says attempts to revive the man failed.
Authorities identified the man as Spencer Peck.
The fire cause is being investigated.


 

 

   

Tuesday News, August 11

City To Hold Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies And Open House

(Le Mars) -- Wednesday, August 12th is going to be a busy day for the city of Le Mars.  First, at 11:45 a.m. city officials will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Burlington Junction Short Line railroad.  The ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at 1555 21st St. Southwest, next to the railroad tracks.  Mayor Dick Kirchoff says the new short line rail with both people and a locomotive  will contribute to the city's economic development.

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Kirchoff says there may be a time when the city will need to extend the current rail line in order to accommodate future industries.  Mayor Kirchoff says Bo-Dean's Baking Company has already benefited from the short line rail.

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Immediately following the railroad ribbon cutting ceremony, city officials will go to the new Public Works Building and conduct another ribbon cutting ceremony and open house.  Mayor Kirchoff says the new public works building is located at 800 18th Street Southwest.  The open house will start at noon and will continue through 6:00 p.m.  City officials will offer tours, and will provide food at the open house. Kirchoff says the new public works facility will be able to combine services to one location.

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Kirchoff offers the specifics of the new structure, and the responsibilities of the city staff.

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School Board Reviews Suggestions From DLIIT

(Le Mars) -- At last evening's Le Mars Community School Board meeting, school board members reviewed the recommendations as submitted by the District Learning and Instructional Impact Team.  Those recommendations include considering offering a "math academy" at the high school level.  The school district already has an English academy that was implemented last year.  One team member suggests more goals to monitor and measure what the TLC program is doing and to embrace that.  Another suggestion is to incorporate block teaching into the 7th and 8th grades.  Still another idea from a district learning and instructional impact team member is to consider a new approach to goals rather than all being set as ten percent reduction in non-proficient.  The team member asks, "Is there another goal to drive the improvements we desire because many of the middle school students already are less than ten percent non-proficient, and it would be tough to keep lowering?"

 

 

 

 

Supervisors To Discuss Lease Agreements With Pride Group

(Le Mars) -- Plymouth County Board of Supervisors will convene today at the county courthouse board room.  The supervisors will hear from Anne Rust with Pride Group as they discuss lease agreements.  The supervisors will also listen to a report from County Treasurer, Shelly Sitzmann, and they will get a construction update from County engineer, Tom Rohe.

 

 

 

Poultry Producers Begin To Re-populate Barns After Bird Flu

 

(Manson) -- State agriculture officials say Iowa poultry producers are starting to re-populate their barns with turkeys and layer hens following the outbreak of the avian bird flu earlier this spring.  The bird flu devastated the state's poultry industry, affecting more than 40 million chickens and turkeys.  Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey attended a news conference Monday to celebrate the fact that many Iowa poultry are making a comeback after the bird flu outbreak.

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Northey says it has been since mid-June since the last outbreak was detected.  He says the worst is over, but state officials need to be prepared in case the bird flu returns later this autumn.

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Northey says it may be some time before the Iowa poultry industry is back to full production.

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The state agriculture secretary says should the bird flu strike poultry operations again in the fall, he has established the goal to act quicker and to minimize the number of birds affected.

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Northey says it will also be a while before the state can bounce back from its lost economic revenue as a result of the bird flu outbreak.

 

 

 

 

State Fair To Serve As Good Education Opportunity To Consumers

(Des Moines) -- Thursday marks the start of the eleven day Iowa State Fair held in Des Moines.  Aside from the various entertainment venues, the midway rides, and the many different foods served on a stick, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says the state fair serves as an excellent opportunity to educate consumers about agriculture.

(sot) Northey state fair1

Northey says there are plenty of examples of animal husbandry and animal welfare seen at the state fair, which serves as another form of agriculture education for consumers.

(sot) Northey state fair2

The Agriculture Secretary says in addition, many commodity organizations distribute information to fair attendees, and the state agriculture department will feature two exhibit booths, one in the Agriculture Building and the other located in the Various Industry building.

 

 

 

 

Gospel Mission To Feature Housing For Dads With Children

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A Christian nonprofit agency plans to build emergency housing for single men and their children in Sioux City.
The Gospel Mission has been helping single women and their children. The agency's executive director, Harold Youtzy Jr., says that in the past 18 months, single men with children have frequented the Gospel Mission. He says those families end up homeless for a "wide variety of reasons."
The $600,000, U-shaped complex will be built on land east of the Gospel Mission's main facility. Construction of four apartment-style units is scheduled to start immediately and be finished in six months. Youtzy says half of the money needed already has been raised.
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