Friday, August 22, 2014
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Monday News, August 18

Le Mars Fire Department Host Water Fight

(Le Mars) -- Nine different fire departments with 128 participants competed in the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department's water fight held Sunday afternoon. There were 15 mens leader line teams with Storm Lake one taking top honors.  The leader line involves three individuals with the first fire fighter attaching the hose to a water source and turning on the water, the second helps carry the hose and assists with keeping the hose straight, and the third fire fighter has to go through an obstacle course and shoot the water at a football.  The other water fight had 29 mens teams and six women's teams.  Teams of two people would grab a hose and aim the water at a barrell that was on a cable above their heads.  The object was to push the barrell, with the water, past your opponets.  Hull Fire Department won the men's water fights, with Storm Lake women taking top honors in the women's category.  Le Mars women won second and third place in the water fights.   Fire Chief Dave Schipper says the competition is fun, but it also helps with sharpening the fire fighter's skills. 


Fire Department Responds To Alarm At The Abbey

(Le Mars) -- Speaking about the Le Mars Fire Department, they responded to an alarm at The Abbey this morning at about 5:30 a.m.  Fire officials arrived only to learn the alarm was malfunctioning.  There was no fire.


Two Teenage Girls Injured After ATV Accident

(Le Mars) -- Two teenage girls were transported to Floyd Valley hospital on Thursday evening after the ATV they were riding entered a ditch and struck a field drive way, causing the ATV to overturn.  Both girls were 13 years of age.  According to a report by the Plymouth County Sheriff's office, the driver of the ATV, from rural Remsen, was traveling too fast and lost control of the ATV when it overturned pinning the driver underneath.  The passenger, from Le Mars, was thrown off the all terrain vehicle.  The accident happened at about 6:45 p.m. Thursday, August 14th near the intersection of 230th street and Otter Avenue.  


Conservatives Want To Get Rid Of Common Core Education Standards 

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa conservatives are continuing to fight the Common Core education standards, but it isn't clear that the program will go away at the state level any time soon.
     The Common Core is a set of english and math standards that spell out what students should know and when. The standards have been attacked by conservatives, who say the federal government is overreaching into classrooms.
     Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has not said he wants to eradicate Common Core here, though last year he signed an executive order clarifying that the state would continue to maintain control over education standards and testing. And earlier this month Branstad removed Iowa from an organization created to develop an assessment system for the Common Core standards.


Polaris To Expand To Accomodate Motorcycle Sales



New Taxi Rules Proposed For Iowa City

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Iowa City officials are considering imposing new taxi cab rules after a driver was charged with several assaults last winter.
     Iowa City Police Chief Sam Hargadine recommended the new rules, which could include city-issued IDs, 24-hour dispatch centers and other changes to the way cab companies operate.
     Company officials say they'll oppose some of the measures, including one that would require them to hire drivers as employees instead of keeping them as independent contractors.
     Hargadine says his officers spent 200 hours tracking taxi drivers from different companies because the assault victim couldn't identify the driver and company owners couldn't tell police who was on the road at a given time.






  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Sales of Indian motorcycles are strong enough to support more jobs at the Iowa plant that makes them.
     Polaris Industries expects to hire 300 more people at its Spirit Lake, Iowa plant that already employs more than 700.
     The Minneapolis-based company is hiring because it is expanding its Indian line of motorcycles to include the lighter, less-expensive Scout.
     Polaris' Steve Menneto says the company is confident there will be strong demand for the revived Scout model.
     Sales of Indian motorcycles have been strong for Polaris, but the brand remains well behind industry leader Harley-Davidson.


Saturday News, August 16

Fire Department Responds To Smell Of Natural Gas In Apartment

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department responded to an apartment complex for the smell of natural gas. The call was received at midnight.  Fire officials responded to 1135 4th Avenue Southeast, apartment number 11.  Fire officials were on the scene for only about fifteen minutes.


Remsen Fire Department Offers Aid To Accident On Highway 3

(Remsen) -- The Remsen Fire Department was called on Friday afternoon to offer assistance to an automobile accident with minor injuries.  The accident happened at the intersection of Highway 3 and Washington Street in Remsen.  Fire officials responded to the call at about 3:35 p.m. and were on the scene for about a half an hour.


Le Mars Fire Department To Host Water Hose Competition

(Le Mars) -- Lumber jacks participate in log cutting contests, cowboys have rodeos, and fire fighters compete in water fights.  Each is an example of how the duties of a daily job becomes a form of competition.  The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department will be hosting a Water hose competition scheduled for Sunday afternoon.  Le Mars Fire Chief Dave Schipper says the competition is not just for fun, but it does help fire fighters sharpen their skills.

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Schipper says the event does allow for fire fighters to get acquainted with one another in a setting other than emergencies.

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The Le Mars Fire Chief invites the public to come to the Fareway grocery store parking lot and witness the water wars.

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The fire department's water fights will begin at 12:00 noon on Sunday.


Water Department Says Discolored Water May Occur

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department will be hosting a fire department water fight on Sunday afternoon at the Fareway parking lot, and City water superintendent, Gayle Sitzmann wants citizens to be aware there is a possibility for some discolored water, particularly in the northeast section of town.  Sitzmann notes that in past water fight competitions, the water quality was not bothered.  He says there is the potential risk of discolored water from opening a fire hydrant.  Sitzmann says if residents should notice any discolored water, it is best to use cold water, preferably from an outside hose bib until the water clears.  Sitzmann says if on Monday morning, if discolored water exists, residents should contact the city water department.


Sioux City Man Sentenced To Five Years After High Speed Police Chase

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A Sioux City man has been sentenced to five years in prison for leading authorities on a high-speed car chase in May.
     25-year-old David Whitlock was sentenced Thursday in Woodbury County District Court after he pleaded guilty to eluding, possession of a controlled substance and second-offense operating while intoxicated.
     Numerous misdemeanor charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
     Whitlock was accused of leading a Woodbury County sheriff's deputy on a car chase that reached speeds of up to 90 mph. The went through Sergeant Bluff and south to Mapleton.
     The chase ended when a deputy patrol car hit Whitlock's car.


Sioux City Police Warn Of "Home Protection" Scam

(Sioux City) -- The Sioux City Police are warning residents of a possible telemarketing scam in the area.  Numerous calls are being placed to local numbers in which a recorded voice identifies a business named "Home Protection Services" and offers in home alarm systems that are monitored by local police.  The recording goes on to ask the recipient to press "1" to speak with a representative.  The Sioux City Police Department has identified the caller's phone number and business name to be associated with a telemarketing scam.  The Sioux City Police Department does not provide private alarm monitoring services for any residence or business.  Additionally, those companies that do provide monitoring services must be registered with the Sioux City Police Department.  "Home Protection Services" is not a known provider of monitoring services in the Sioux City area.


Cool Temperatures Slow Down Crop Maturity Development

(Le Mars) -- With the cooler temperatures that we have been experiencing, many farmers are wondering if that may mean an early frost is likely this year.  If frost were to come early, would our crops have reached maturity so yields won't be compromised?  Joel DeJong, Iowa State University Extension Crops Specialist for northwest Iowa details how much more time the corn crop needs in order to become fully mature.

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DeJong says if temperatures remain cooler than normal for a significant time period, that could further slow down the maturity development process. He says the closer to the maturity date before frost hits, the less likelihood for yield loss.

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The crops specialist says the corn crop is falling behind on growing degree days.

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New Era For Ethanol Production

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A new era of ethanol fuel production will begin soon as Iowa refineries begin full operation using materials other than corn kernels.
     Iowa has two major cellulosic plants under construction that will use corn plant leaves, stalks and cobs to make ethanol.
     The first to go online is Project Liberty, a plant in Emmetsburg built by Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based ethanol-maker POET and Royal DSM, a biotechnology company based in the Netherlands. The $250 million plant, set for a grand opening Sept. 3, will produce up to 25 million gallons annually.
     It's among the first facility of its size in the country to make ethanol from plant material.
     A $225 million DuPont plant at Nevada, in central Iowa, will start production this fall and make 30 million gallons annually.


Man Sends Threatening Letters To Football Team

 IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - An eastern Iowa man has pleaded guilty to charges in connection to threatening letters involving a major high school football program.
     44-year-old Daniel Stone, of Solon, pleaded guilty Thursday to third-degree harassment and interference with official acts as part of plea deal. 
     Stone was arrested in July after DNA evidence linked him to several letters in August 2013 that allegedly threatened administrators at Regina High School in Iowa City.
     Administrators say they received letters that said the school's football coaching staff was providing performance enhancing drugs to the student athletes. The letters made demands in exchange for silence on the allegations. 
     An investigation into the letters' allegations turned up nothing.


State Lawmaker Charged With Inappropriate Sex Contact

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A Republican state lawmaker has been arrested and charged with felony sexual abuse.
     The Department of Public Safety says Rep. Henry Rayhons, of Garner, was arrested Friday on the sexual abuse charge.
     According to the police affidavit, Rayhons had sexual contact in May with the resident of a care center who was not able to give her consent. A department spokesman confirmed that the victim was Rayhons' wife, Donna Rayhons. She died last week.
     He was taken to the Hancock County jail.
     The 78-year-old Rayhons represents the 8th District in the state House, which covers part of north central Iowa.
     It wasn't clear whether Rayhons has an attorney. A telephone message left at his home wasn't immediately returned.


Council Bluffs Doctor Accused Of Possession Of Child Pornography

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - A former Council Bluffs doctor has been sentenced to more than 10 years in prison on a child pornography charge.
     Dennis Jones received the sentence Friday in federal court in Council Bluffs on one count of possession of child pornography.
     Jones pleaded guilty to the charge in May as part of a deal. He also agreed to permanently surrender his medical license.
     Authorities say they found about 1.2 million images and 9,300 videos of child pornography during a search of Jones' home. Court documents say other images and videos showed patients at Jones' medical clinic that were taken secretly with a pen camera.
     Jones faces a separate sexual abuse charge involving a minor. He also faces lawsuits in connection to the patient images and videos.



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