Wednesday News, November 4
Local Election Results
(Le Mars) -- It's Kirchoff, Rexwinkle and Wick who were elected by the people of Le Mars as their respective civic officials. The results are of no surprise since each were running unopposed. There was no name listed as a candidate for Ward 2, but Steve Wick was able to capture the City Council Ward 2 seat with a total of 75 write-in votes. Dick Kirchoff received a total of 286 votes, and John Rexwinkle garnered 255 votes for the At-large council position. There were no write-in scattering votes for the mayor's seat, but 18 people did submit another name other than Rexwinkle for the At-large seat, and four people had written a different name other than Steve Wick for the Ward 2 seat.
In the Floyd Valley hospital trustee election, Ralph Klemme earned 271 votes, Danna Schuster received 260 votes, and Janelle Bixenman got 249 votes. Each will serve on the hospital board of trustees.
Retired veterinarian Chuck Holz of Le Mars, was able to win the special legislative election. Holz was the only candidate featured on the ballot for the state House of Representatives District 5. The special election was needed to fill the vacancy left by Chuck Soderberg. Holz received a total of 1311 votes.
In the contested races, it was retired funeral director Joel Fisch who was victorious with the three-way Remsen mayor race. Fisch received 421 votes and nearly a two-to-one margin over second place finisher Steve Pick who received 175 votes. The third mayorial candidate, Casey Penning got only five votes.
Merrill also had a race for their mayor position betwen Richard Husman and Kyle Kolker. Husman was able to defeat Kolker by a two-to-one margin receiving 98 votes to Kolker's 43 votes. Merrill also had five contestants seeking three council positions. Bruce Norgard received the most votes with 162. The other two included Vicky Hemmelman with 108 and Daniel Pierson with 65 votes.
In Craig, seven people were competing for the five council positions. The winners included: Joyce Ludwigs with 26 votes, Glenn Moller with 23 votes, Mona Schlitz received 21 votes, and Gary Schlitz and Kelly Plueger each receiving 19 votes.
The other contested race involved the selection of the Akron Care Center board of directors. Three people were seeking the two positions. Winning the race were Pamela VonHagel and Bradley Britton with 151 and 132 votes, respectfully.
U-P Train And Grain Truck Collide In Hinton
(Hinton) -- Traffic on Highway 75 and county road C-60 was interrupted for nearly an hour Tuesday afternoon when an Union Pacific locomotive struck the back end of a grain trailer which was crossing the railroad tracks in Hinton. The accident happened at about 4:30 p.m. There were no injuries related to the accident. The driver of the semi truck and grain trailer says he had just unloaded his cargo of grain at the Farmers Cooperative Company when he had a green traffic light, but he says he had to wait a moment for the traffic on Highway 75 to clear. At the same time, the railroad crossing gates came down and the warning lights and bells began to operate. The driver says he was caught in between the gates. Minimal damage was reported on the grain trailer as the train was moving at a slow rate of speed. The Union Pacific train did not encounter any damage. The Hinton Police Department is investigating the accident.
Odd-Even Parking Soon To Be Enforced
(Le Mars) -- Our temperatures of late, may not be indicative of typical November weather, especially when we have been enjoying days with 70 degrees, but regardless, we are in the month of November and that means the city ordinance of odd-even parking is in effect. Le Mars Police Chief Stuart Dekkenga says officers have so far only issued warning citations. He says the weather will determine when parking enforcement will begin.
Dekkenga says he would like to see Le Mars residents start getting into the habit of the alternate parking days.
The odd-even parking ordinance remains in effect until April 1st. Chief Dekkenga says he wants residents to follow the city ordinance because the tickets can be a bit pricey.
Sioux City Police Investigate Double Fatality Accident Involving Stolen Vehicle
(Sioux City) -- Sioux City Police have been investigating a rash of stolen vehicles during the past few weeks. It was a stolen vehicle that was involved with a double fatality accident that happened at about 1:00 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. Police say a 2009 Nissan Altima operated by a 34 year old Sioux City man was traveling at a high rate of speed when it had struck several other vehicles and crashed into a tree. A 28 year old female also of Sioux City was a passenger in the car. The Nissan car was traveling east bound on 25th Street when it went airborne near the end of the 1600 block of 25th Street where the street begins a steep downhill decent. The vehicle landed on the street near 25th and Morgan Streets and continued into the 1700 block of 25th Street. The Nissan was still at a high rate of speed when it collided with a Dodge Durango that was backing from a drive-way in the 1700 block of 25th Street. The Dodge Durango spun around on the street, but the occupants of that vehicle did not sustain any serious injuries. After hitting the Dodge Durango, the Nissan car went off the roadway and struck a tree on side of 25th Street. The Nissan then overturned onto the roof of the vehicle and also hit a Jeep Cherokee that was parked facing east on 25th Street. Both the male and the female occupants of the Nissan were extracted from the vehicle by the Sioux City Fire Department and were transported by ambulance to Mercy Medical Center. Both died from injuries sustained from the accident. Names of the victims involved are not being released at this time. The Nissan car involved was reported stolen on October 29th.
Democrats Fail To Stop Privatization Of Medicaid
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A Democratic effort to delay privatization of Medicaid in Iowa has failed in a legislative oversight hearing.
Democratic lawmakers on the bipartisan Health Policy Oversight Committee proposed a motion Tuesday asking Gov. Terry Branstad to hold off on implementing the privatization plan by six months. But Republicans opposed it and the proposal did not move forward.
Branstad's plan to move Medicaid to private management is scheduled to start January 1. It has drawn scrutiny over the projected cost savings, how contracts have been awarded and how the change would impact patients.
Officials from the Department of Human Services say they are working to ensure a smooth transition to the new program. But Democratic lawmakers and health care providers questioned the speed of the transition.
Vaccine May Soon Be Developed For Mystery Swine Disease
AMES, Iowa (AP) - A team of veterinary researchers at Iowa State University has discovered the cause of a disease that makes baby pigs involuntary shake which has perplexed hog farmers for more than 90 years.
Researchers from the university teamed up with scientists from Missouri-based animal health company Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica to use new DNA sequencing techniques to trace the piglet tremors to a virus.
Infected piglets, sometimes referred to as "shaker pigs" or "dancing pigs," can die from starvation if the tremors are severe enough.
Iowa State veterinary pathologist Bailey Arruda says veterinarians have long recognized the congenital tremors but could never pinpoint the cause until now.
Now that the researchers have identified the virus, work can begin to develop a vaccine.
Iowa Citizens For Community Improvement Ask DNR For More Rules Regulating Manure
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Members of the citizen action group Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement are meeting with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to file a complaint demanding improved accountability and oversight of livestock farms.
The group studied livestock waste management plans from five counties and found plans with missing pages and indications of multiple farmers dumping manure on the same field.
The manure management plans are required by state law for farms with at least 1,250 hogs. The DNR is responsible for oversight.
Jess Mazour, community organizer for Iowa CCI, says inadequate manure management is contributing to water pollution problems.
DNR Director Chuck Gipp says the agency will review the complaint and respond. He says the agency is working with farmers to improve water quality but it takes time.