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Monday News, March 9

Le Mars Police Involved With Car Chase

(Le Mars) -- Late Friday night into early Saturday morning, Le Mars Police was involved in a pursuit.  At around 12:11 a.m. a Le Mars police officer was attempting to stop a vehicle for speeding.  The vehicle actually did stop at Lincoln and 6th Avenue southwest, but as the officer was getting out of his squad car the suspect fled.  After a short pursuit, the vehicle was finally stopped in the alley of the 300 block of Central Avenue Southeast.  24 year old Alex Watterson of Alton, Iowa was placed under arrest.  Watterson was charged with eluding law enforcement, an aggravated misdemeanor, second offense for operating while intoxicated another aggravated misdemeanor, and failure to obey a stop sign.  He was also held at the Plymouth County jail on several warrants issued out of Sioux County.  Le Mars Police were assisted in the matter by the Plymouth County Sheriff's Department.

 

Jet Blue Airliner Makes Emergency Stop At Gateway Sioux City Airport

(Sioux City) --  A Jet Blue passenger airliner enroute from New York City to San Francisco  made an emergency landing in at Sioux Gateway Airport Sunday evening.
    Authorities say the co-pilot of the plane became ill and passed out during the cross country flight.
     Upon landing in Sioux City, the man was transported to Mercy Medical Center.
     Passengers on the airliner were brought into Sioux Gateway’s terminal until another plane could be sent to complete their journey to the west coast.  The flight of the Airbus A-321 carrying 159 passengers and six crew members originated at John F. Kennedy Airport.
      That plane was expected to arrive sometime after midnight and the airline’s website stated the passengers should be in San Francisco by 4:20am.

 

Le Mars Community School Board To Convene This Evening

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Community Board of Education are scheduled to convene this evening.  The school board will discuss the recent school legislative forum which featured legislators Chuck Soderberg and Bill Anderson.  The school board will likely discuss the upcoming Spring Workshop as sponsored by the Iowa Association of School Boards.  That workshop is scheduled for April 21st and will be held in Sheldon.  The Le Mars Community School Board will discuss the annual Foundation Banquet which will be held on April 29th at the Le Mars Convention Center.  Superintendent Dr. Todd Wendt will present a preliminary fiscal year budget to the school board.  A final budget will not be determined until the state legislature decides how much money will be allocated to school districts.

 

State Legislature Still Undecided On School Funding

(Le Mars) -- School officials are anxiously awaiting to see what will be the amount of money to be allocated to school districts.  The state legislature is split between the HOuse wanting to offer schools about $100 million, or a 1.25 percent increase from last year, and the State Senate that approved a $200 million plan, or a four percent increase.  Le Mars State Representative Chuck Soderberg serves as the chair of the House Appropriations committee and has been selected to serve on the conference committee.  He says although there have been meetings between the House and the Senate, there has not been any compromise reached on school funding.

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School officials have told legislators that in order to avoid cuts in programs and staff, the Senate version of education spending would be needed.  However, House legislators contend the state doesn't have the available money to match the Senate's spending level.  Soderberg explains the differences between the bills.

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Soderberg says he has asked Senate Democrats where they intend to get the money to fund the schools at a four percent increase, and he says their answer is "we don't know".

 

Iowa Agriculture Summit Attracts Potential Presidential Candidates

(Des Moines) -- The first Iowa Agriculture Summit was held in Des Moines on Saturday, and ethanol was topic that was discussed by several potential presidential candidates.  Radio Iowa's Kay Henderson reports.

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75 mph Speed Limit Bill Fails To Move Beyond Funnel Deadline 

     DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa drivers will stay out of the fast lane for now, after lawmakers did not advance a bill that would have boosted the speed limit on interstate highways, bringing it in line with many nearby states.
     The bill sought to raise the speed limit on interstate highways to 75 miles per hour, up from the current limit of 70. It died in the state Senate several days ago, amid questions about the safety ramifications.
     That means Iowa drivers will continue at slower speeds than those behind the wheel in many nearby states. Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota all have speed limits of 75.
     Iowa's interstate highway speed limit was last increased in 2005, up from 65.

 

Three Fishermen Fall Through Ice And Died

  CRESTON, Iowa (AP) - Three Iowa fishermen died this weekend after falling through the ice on a farm pond in Union County.
     The Creston News Advertiser reports 71-year-old Earl Burkhalter, 73-year-old Charles Critz and 68-year-old James Oshel all died Saturday. They were from Creston.
     Creston Fire Chief Todd Jackson says the men went ice fishing Saturday afternoon and failed to return. Rescuers were called to the farm shortly after 8 p.m.
     Authorities found fishing equipment sitting on the pond's ice near a hole.
     The men were all rescued from the lake within an hour. Parmedics tried to revive the men who were flown to hospitals, but the men died.
     Iowa officials say ice fishing conditions are deteriorating across the state because of recent warm weather. So fishermen should test the ice often.

 

Iwo Jima Veteran To Return To Famous WWII Battleground

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Later this month, a 90-year-old Iowa veteran will have the chance to return to the volcanic beaches of Iwo Jima where he fought with the Marines during World War II.
     Frank Pontisso will be part of one of the final groups of veterans returning to the tiny Pacific island.
     Pontisso says he wants to visit certain parts of the island, such as the spot where he say a friend killed or the place where his arm was injured.
     Pontisso says he witnessed the historic flag raising on the island that became one of the war's most iconic images, but he also lost the lower part of his right arm to a mortar blast.
 
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Decorah Eaglit Dies From Electrocution

 DECORAH, Iowa (AP) - A nonprofit has announced that a Decorah eaglet died after being electrocuted last week.
     The Raptor Resource Project said Sunday the bird, called Four, was found lying underneath a utility pole between Keota and Harper in rural Keokuk County. 
     The organization says she was the fourth eaglet from Decorah known to have died from electrocution. Two eagles hatched in 2012 died after being shocked that same year. Another eagle of the 2014 Decorah eagle group died in July.
     A consultant told the group the pole where Four was found is unsafe and suggested improvements to it. The nonprofit has forwarded the suggestions to a utility company and is waiting for a response. 
     The Raptor Resource Project specializes in the preservations of falcons, eagles, ospreys, hawks and owls.

 

 

 

 




   

Sunday News, March 8

Potential Presidential Candidates Speak At Iowa Agriculture Summit

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The clear rift over immigration opened up publicly Saturday at an Iowa forum on agriculture, energy, trade and food policy.
     Most of the nine possible Republican presidential candidates for 2016 called for enforcing existing laws. But outliers Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, and South Carolina's Sen. Lindsay Graham proposed offering the estimated 11 million immigrants in the U.S. illegally a path to legal status.
     The policy difference will likely remain a key issue as the race for the 2016 Republican nomination unfolds. Immigrants are an important workforce in agriculture and food processing in the early caucus state and around the country.
     Bush and Graham's positions are politically risky in Iowa, where conservatives are disproportionately opposed to a path for legal status for those living here illegally.

 

Texas Former Governor Rick Perry

Texas' Perry says states should handle energy subsidies
 
     DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - Former Texas Governor Rick Perry is telling Iowa Republicans he'd prefer that states, rather than the federal government, handle energy subsidies.
     Perry spoke at an agricultural policy forum in Des Moines Saturday that drew several 2016 GOP presidential hopefuls. Asked about supporting federal subsidies or tax credits for renewable fuels and wind energy, Perry said he philosophically felt that such decisions should addressed by the states.
     A 2007 law increases the volume of renewables blended into transportation fuel to 36 billion gallons by 2022. The federal Environmental Protection Agency in 2013 proposed reducing the increase. Leaders from both parties in Iowa say that would hurt the state's economy.
     Others on the program included former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

 

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush

   Republican Jeb Bush says he'd be an upbeat candidate
 
     CEDAR RAPIDS,
Iowa (AP) - Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush says he will be an upbeat candidate for president if he runs for the Republican nomination.
     Speaking to about 200 people squeezed into the backroom of a Cedar Rapids restaurant Saturday night, Bush said he hopes his campaign would be hopeful and optimistic.
     Bush isn't yet a formal candidate, but he acted like one during his first trip to Iowa as a presidential prospect.
     While in the leadoff caucus state for two days, he spoke at a congressional fundraiser and met with state party officials in the Des Moines area. He also participated in an agriculture forum along with eight other potential GOP candidates.

 

Texas Senator Ted Cruz

Texas' Cruz tells Iowans he opposes renewable fuel quota
 
     DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - Texas Senator Ted Cruz is telling Iowa Republicans and agribusiness leaders that he opposes the federal standard for renewable production, including ethanol.
     At a forum focused on agricultural issues on Saturday, Cruz likens the federal renewable fuel standard to "corporate welfare."
     Cruz tells the audience of roughly 1,000 that he has "every bit of faith that businesses can continue to compete, continue to do well without going on bended knee to the government."
     Iowa is the nation's largest producer of ethanol.
     A 2007 law increases the volume of ethanol and other renewables blended into transportation fuel to 36 billion gallons by 2022. The federal Environmental Protection Agency in 2013 proposed reducing the increase. Leaders from both parties in Iowa say that would hurt the state's economy.

 

Cruz Says Clinton Should Be Investigated For E-mails

     DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Senator Ted Cruz says the Justice Department should investigate Hillary Rodham Clinton's use of a private email account to conduct official business while she was secretary of state.
     The Texas Republican and possible 2016 presidential contender said Saturday that the department "absolutely" should launch an investigation to determine whether Clinton violated any laws, adding that it has an "obligation to do so."
     Cruz made the remarks at an agricultural forum in Des Moines that featured several 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls.
     Clinton is considered the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, although she has yet to announce her plans.
     Clinton's extensive use of her own email account and private server has raised questions about whether she adhered to accountability rules. She has asked that her work correspondence be made public.

 

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie

  Christie offers support for renewable fuels, local oversight
 
     DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has offered support for maintaining the current level of biofuels that are blended into gasoline.
     Christie spoke Saturday at an Iowa agricultural forum for 2016 presidential hopefuls hosted by Republican businessman Bruce Rastetter.
     A 2007 law increases the volume of renewables blended into transportation fuel to 36 billion gallons by 2022. The federal Environmental Protection Agency in 2013 proposed reducing the increase. Leaders from both parties in Iowa say that would hurt the state's economy.
     Christie also said he wants to enforce existing immigration laws, and he criticized the Obama administration for overreach in applying the Clean Water Act.

 

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee

Huckabee calls for tougher immigration oversight
 
     DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee says the United States should better restrict illegal immigration and seek to gauge why people want to move here.
     During an agricultural forum for 2016 presidential hopefuls in Des Moines on Saturday, Huckabee said the United States was not asking people seeking to immigrate here if they "love America."
     Huckabee also offered support for maintaining the level of biofuels, such as ethanol, blended into gasoline. He said ethanol production helped support energy independence for the United States.
     The forum was hosted by Iowa Republican businessman Bruce Rastetter. Nine Republican presidential prospects were on the program, including former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

 

Former Pennslyvania Senator Rick Santorum

   Santorum says US immigration system is not working
 
     DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum says the immigration system in the United States is not working.
     Santorum spoke Saturday at a forum in Des Moines that focused on agricultural issues. It drew nearly a dozen Republicans considering a presidential campaign in 2016.
     Santorum says the country must better secure the border and create legal programs for workers with different skills.
     Santorum also is repeating his support for maintaining the amount of biofuels blended into gasoline.
     A 2007 law increases the volume of renewables blended into transportation fuel to 36 billion gallons by 2022. The federal Environmental Protection Agency in 2013 proposed reducing the increase. Leaders in Iowa say that would hurt the state's economy.

 

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham

 South Carolina's Graham would overhaul immigration

     DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham says Republicans in Congress should work with Democrats to overhaul the immigration system, noting that American businesses need legal workers.
     Graham told an agricultural policy forum in Des Moines that a "practical solution" on immigration was needed. He said he favored letting some immigrants living in the country illegally stay in the country, if they met certain conditions, like learning English and paying taxes.
     Graham was part of the bipartisan, so-called Gang of Eight senators who crafted immigration legislation that eventually offered citizenship for immigrants. It passed the Senate in 2013, but died in the House.
     Graham was one of eight potential 2016 presidential candidates at the forum. Others included former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

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