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Tuesday News, February 10

Supervisors To Tour Life Skills Training Center

(Le Mars) -- Plymouth County Board of Supervisors will gather at the County Courthouse this morning for its weekly meeting.  The supervisors have a light agenda before them today.  The county supervisors are expected to approve county employees gross wages report for publication.  The supervisors will hear from County Engineer Tom Rohe as he will present a railroad signal agreement to be located on Otter Avenue.  Rohe will also discuss with the supervisors a gravel contract with Stratford Gravel.  The county supervisors have scheduled a portion of their morning to visit and tour the Life Skills Training Center.

 

Floyd Valley Hospital Trustees To Meet This Evening

(Le Mars) -- The Floyd Valley Hospital Board of Trustees are scheduled to meet this evening for its monthly meeting.  The hospital trustees will listen to updates provided by the hospital auxiliary, the city of Le Mars, and an Avera McKennan update.  The trustees will hear a report on the Quality Improvement Quarterly report, along with evaluation discussion.  Daryl Friedenbach will offer the trustees a hospital financial report, and hospital administrator Mike Donlin will present a general hospital update.  The hospital trustees will review and possibly approve the corporate compliance annual report.  They will review the latest Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Donlin will also share with the trustees the latest developments regarding the North Addition Expansion project.

 

Sioux City Man Found Dead In Burning Car

   DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say smoke inhalation likely killed a Sioux City man who was found dead inside a burning car near a Des Moines church.
     Firefighters had been sent to the parking of the Abundant Life Church on East Sheridan Avenue around 10 p.m. Sunday. They discovered the body of 51-year-old Patrick Murphy II after opening the driver's side door. 
     Medical examiner Gregory Schmunk says Murphy was barely burned. The autopsy didn't reveal any evidence of trauma or signs of any crime involved in Murphy's death. A toxicology report is expected within six weeks.

 

Additional Costs Added To New State Penitentiary

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - State officials say repairs at the vacant Iowa State Penitentiary are expected to cost an additional $7 million.
     In a memo to state lawmakers last week, the Iowa Department of Corrections says the cost to fix a faulty heating and cooling system is at least $6.7 million. Prison officials say an additional $350,000 is needed for a defective smoke control system.
     State lawmakers in 2010 approved $131 million to build the prison. Documents prepared by aides for Gov. Terry Branstad last summer, however, show the cost had risen to $165.5 million.
     The prison in Fort Madison was scheduled to open last March to house inmates at the old Iowa State Penitentiary, located a mile away. But construction issues have delayed the prison's opening.

 

Chris Christie Gets Warm Welcome In Iowa

 WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is getting a warm welcome from Iowa Republicans in his first campaign appearance since returning from a rocky trade trip to the United Kingdom.
     Christie appeared at a Monday event sponsored by a county GOP organization held in suburban Des Moines. Seeking to introduce himself to voters in the kickoff caucus state, Christie touted his record as a conservative governor in a Democratic state, citing his efforts to cut taxes and reduce spending.
     Christie, who also met privately with Republican Gov. Terry Branstad, has not formally declared any 2016 plans, but moved recently moved closer with the formation of Leadership Matters for America, a political action committee.

Fiorina To Visit Iowa 

  DES MOINES,
Iowa (AP) - Former tech executive Carly Fiorina is heading to Iowa next month for a conference geared at empowering women.
     Will Rogers, chairman of the Republican Party of Polk County, said Monday that Fiorina will appear at the conference in West Des Moines on March 14. The event is sponsored by the Republican Party of Polk County and Polk County Republican Women.
     A former Hewlett-Packard chief executive, Fiorina is considered a potential 2016 presidential candidate. She appeared at a candidate summit in Iowa in January.
     Fiorina is trying to build a female-empowering organization, Unlocking Potential Project, for conservatives.
     Though she has presented herself as a political outsider, Fiorina lost an expensive Senate race in California in 2010. She now lives in Virginia.

 

Mason Discusses Merger With AIB

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - University of Iowa President Sally Mason has discussed details of a merger with a Des Moines business college that will become part of the university in 2016.
     Mason answered questions from a legislative committee Monday about the future of AIB College of Business. Chris Costa, chairman of the board of trustees for AIB, also answered questions.
     Costa says AIB will be gifted to the university instead of technically merging because of accreditation issues. AIB will graduate its last students at the end of June 2016, and the University of Iowa will take over operations the following month.
     Mason says officials will help current AIB students with the transfer process to either the University of Iowa or elsewhere.
     AIB athletes at the meeting later expressed concern about the merger.

 

DNR Says Clean Up From Train De-railment Is Progressing

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa's Department of Natural Resources says results from several monitoring stations along the Mississippi River show much of the ethanol that leaked into the water after several train cars derailed has dissolved.
     DNR spokesman Kevin Baskins says the highest levels of ethanol have been detected nearest the site where 14 cars containing the fuel went off the tracks Wednesday in a remote area north of Dubuque.
     Baskins says ethanol dissipated fairly quickly in the first mile downstream, with fuel levels undetectable 10 miles away.
     Officials say they're still unsure how much ethanol spilled into the Mississippi, but Baskins says the approximately 55,000 gallons that remain unaccounted for were involved in a three-car fire, pooled over an acre of ice, soaked into soil in the area and leaked into the river.

 



   

Monday Afternoon News, February 9

Mike Wells Selected To Chair Iowa Business Council

DES MOINES, IOWA – February 9, 2015.  The Iowa Business Council has selected its leadership for 2015.  Michael C. Wells, President and CEO of Wells Enterprises, Inc., of Le Mars was elected as the Council’s chair.  Patrick J. Meyer, President and CEO of Pella Corporation in Pella, will serve as vice chair.  John K. Sorensen, President and CEO of the Iowa Bankers Association in Des Moines was re-elected as treasurer.  Council members determined the organization’s leadership during their annual business meeting held on January 26 in Des Moines.

Mike Wells is President and CEO of Wells Enterprises, Inc. in Le Mars, Iowa.  He started with the family business in 1977 as a route driver while working his way through Morningside College in Sioux City, joining the Blue Bunny sales force in 1981 after graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration.  Early in his career Wells held various positions, culminating with a series of roles in senior management that eventually led to his title as COO in 2007.  On November 13, 2007, he assumed his current position as President and CEO of Wells Enterprises, Inc., a 102 year-old company that is the largest privately held and family owned ice cream manufacturer in the United States.  Wells is the past president of the Iowa Dairy Foods Association, current chair of the International Ice Cream Association, member of the International Dairy Foods Association, and chair of the Iowa Business Council.  Wells is also a member of the Retail Owned Food Dealers Association, the Iowa Grocers Association, and the International Association of Ice Cream Distributors and Vendors.  He received the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year® 2010 Manufacturing Award in the Central Midwest region which recognizes outstanding entrepreneurs who are building and leading dynamic, growing businesses.  In 2013, he was awarded the W. Edwards Deming Entrepreneurial and Business Excellence Award, which recognizes leaders who have exhibited originality, quality, productivity, and performance within the realm of their business.

 

Universities Adjust Classrooms Based On Enrollment Numbers

(Des Moines) -- The University of Iowa and Iowa State University are taking steps to deal with increasing enrollments, while the opposite is true at the University of Northern Iowa. U-N-I’s vice president for facilities and planning, Phillip Simpson, says the Cedar Falls campus has more capacity than students.

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Simpson says. U-N-I had a fall enrollment of just under 12-thousand undergrads and Simpson says the school does have some empty classrooms.

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Simpson says the school is adjusting its campus buildings to meet the demands of its changing student body.

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More than 90-percent of UNI’s student body is from Iowa. Iowa State University in Ames has the problem of finding enough classroom space for its record enrollment. President Stephen Leath told the Board of Regents last week that he has instituted a program to create new flip format courses, that use one-line instruction to take some of the load off classrooms.

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Leath cited a couple of examples of how the program works.

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The University of Iowa is also addressing increasing enrollment. The school is scheduled to open a new residence hall this fall as the university continues progress on rebuilding buildings that were damaged by the flooding in 2008.

 

New Iowa Penitentiary Encounters Additional Construction Delays And Rising Costs

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - State officials say repairs at the vacant Iowa State  are expected to cost an additional $7 million.
In a memo to state lawmakers last week, the Iowa Department of Corrections says the cost to fix a faulty heating and cooling system is at least $6.7 million. Prison officials say an additional $350,000 is needed for a defective smoke control system.
State lawmakers in 2010 approved $131 million to build the prison. Documents prepared by aides for Gov. Terry Branstad last summer, however, show the cost had risen to $165.5 million.
The prison in Fort Madison was scheduled to open last March to house inmates at the old Iowa State Penitentiary, located a mile away. But construction issues have delayed the prison's opening.
---

 

Muscatine Fire Fighter Injured

MUSCATINE, Iowa (AP) - A firefighter has been injured battling blaze at a trucking company in Muscatine.
Firetrucks were dispatched to Daufeldt Transport after a 911 call was received a little before 11 p.m. Sunday. 
The Muscatine Fire Department says in a new release that flames were contained to a semitrailer or near it in a shop, but there was heat and smoke damage throughout the building. The fire cause is being investigated.
The firefighter was reported in stable condition at a Muscatine hospital. His or her name hasn't been released.

 

 

 


   

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