Wednesday News, October 8
University Of Northern Iowa Establishes Regional Entrepreneurship Project
(Sioux City) -- Economic development groups in three northwest Iowa counties are partnering with the University of Northern Iowa's Business & Community Services group to launch a new initiative to support and encourage entrepreneurship and start-up businesses.
Woodbury, Monona, and Plymouth counties as well as Sioux City and Le Mars are taking part in the Regional Entrepreneurship Project. Rob Williams of UNI says his group will work with regional leaders over the next four years to grow more start-up businesses and enhancing efforts through four ways to foster the area's business culture:
Neal Adler of the Le Mars Chamber of Commerce says that networking is a key to the project:
Adler says he will be contacting several businesses in Le Mars and around Plymouth County to take part in the effort:
The program is provided through a grant to UNI from the US Economic Development Administration University Center Program.
City Approves Office Lease For Extension Services
(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars City Council gave its approval to extend the lease agreement to the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach for Plymouth County for a term of five years. The Plymouth County Extension Services has leased office space in the lower level of the Le Mars Convention Center for the past five years. The agreement shows the Extension office will lease the office space for the amount of $1,000 per month, plus an additional $200 per month for use of the convention space for meetings, seminars, and conferences. The financial impact is a gross revenue of $16,800 annually into the Convention Center fund. The city council also discussed the city energy management program agreement. The agreement is between the city of Le Mars and the Iowa Economic Development Authority. Members of the city council and staff will meet with Regional Energy Managers to determine the energy needs and goals for the city of Le Mars.
City To Flush Water Mains
(Le Mars) -- City water officials have announced they will conduct flushing of water mains within the coming days. The water department will start flushing the Northeast part of town on Wednesday and the Northwest part of town this Thursday. Flushing will start at 8:00 AM and continue through 3:30 PM. Customers need to monitor their water for clarity during that time. If discolored water is noticed please use the outside hose bib and when it is clear the home or business should clear up shortly. If discolored water is noticed please refrain from using hot water till the cold hard water has cleared up. This will help to keep the discolored water into the water heater. The city will continue flushing next week in the southwest part of town. City water superintendent, Gayle Sitzmann says perhaps later this month, the city will be installing the new booster station online. He says this will change the flow of the pressure zone coming from the corner of 4th Ave & 12th street SE to 7th Ave or K-49 and 200th street SE.
"Project Safe Meds " To Be Held At Well Aware Community Health Fair
(Le Mars) -- People who have old and expired prescription medications can bring them to today's Well Aware Health Fair to properly dispose of the pills and capsules. Kari Daale, Education Coordinator with the Floyd Valley Hospital explains the Le Mars Police Department is assisting with this program.
The Well Aware Community Health Fair begins at 2:00 p.m. and will continue until 6:00 p.m. at the upper level of the Le Mars Convention Center.
Construction Worker Killed At Work Site Near Correctionville
CORRECTIONVILLE, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say a construction worker has died after he was pinned under a piece of equipment in northwest Iowa.
Woodbury County Sgt. Don Armstrong says authorities responded Tuesday to a construction site near Correctionville where a new bridge is being built.
Authorities found the man pinned under a piece of construction equipment. He was airlifted to a Sioux City hospital but was pronounced dead before the helicopter landed.
The worker's name has not been released. Additional information is not available.
Shine Brothers Recycling Fined By Environmental Protection Agency
SPENCER, Iowa (AP) - A commercial recycling facility in northwest Iowa will pay $120,000 to settle allegations it violated federal clean water regulations.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Region 7 says the administrative settlement with Shine Bros. Corp. means the company will remove contamination that allegedly migrated from its Spencer facility to an adjacent public park.
The EPA says Shine Bros. Corp.'s stormwater control tools were ineffective in handling pollutants. The agency says an investigation determined stormwater carried pollutants off the facility into a park and through the city's storm sewer system to the Little Sioux River.
The company has agreed to update its pollution prevention plans and move some operations into enclosed structures. Plant manager Mike Wycoff says the company has also removed materials from the park and reseeded the affected area.
Alons Reports Having Cancer, But Will Continue With Legislature
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - State Rep. Dwayne Alons says he has been diagnosed with renal cancer but plans to continue to serve in the Legislature.
Alons, a Republican from Hull, announced his diagnosis in a news release Tuesday. He says he had cancer in his left kidney and will undergo treatment in the fall. He thanked his family for their support and expressed a desire to continue working on behalf of Sioux County.
Alons is running unopposed for a ninth term. He is a retired farmer and former Iowa Air National Guard brigadier general.
Trial Date Set For Rayhons Sexual Abuse Case
GARNER, Iowa (AP) - A trial date has been set for an Iowa lawmaker accused of sexually abusing his wife at a care center.
The trial against Republican State Rep. Henry Rayhons is scheduled to start Jan. 28 at the Hancock County District Court in Garner.
Officials have accused the 78-year-old Rayhons, of Garner, of having sexual contact in May with his wife, Donna Rayhons, while she was a resident of a care center and not able to give consent. Donna Rayhons died in early August.
Rayhons is charged with third-degree sexual abuse. He has pleaded not guilty.
Sysco Foods Suing To Keep Price Bids Secret
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A nationwide food distributor is suing to try to block the release of its contracts with University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.
Sysco's Iowa subsidiary argues in court documents filed last month that releasing the documents would reveal the company's tightly-guarded pricing information, including profit margins.
Sysco argues the information is a trade secret and should be exempt from a public records request filed by The Gazette, saying competitors would use it to undercut bids in the future or copy incentives offered to customers.
Meanwhile, Sysco says it would be put at an "extreme disadvantage" in negotiations with other customers who may demand similar pricing.
The University of Iowa acknowledges that the contracts have a confidentiality provision, but says they'll be treated as public records unless a court intervenes.