Iowa early News Headlines: Tuesday, May 1st 2012


May 1st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

ANKENY, Iowa (AP) — Ankeny police are looking for suspects who fired on the police station over the weekend, hitting the building with several rounds. Police Chief Gary Mikulec says shots were fired from a street Saturday night into early Sunday. No one was injured. Mikulec says building video tapes are being reviewed to determine the exact time of the shooting. Bullets were recovered in the second-floor lobby of the police station, which is occupied around the clock. Mikulec says the trajectory and pattern of the gunfire show it was clearly aimed at the building.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Federal prosecutors are being defensive about their use of an obscure law to indict two recreational Iowa pilots whose low flying may have disturbed thousands of resting migratory birds. Paul Austin and Craig Martin are charged with violating the Airborne Hunting Act. Prosecutors say they flew separate small planes 20 feet above Saylorville Lake last November, causing a large group of waterfowl and white pelicans to take flight. Prosecutors say they violated the law, which prohibits using an aircraft to harass animals. Austin and Martin are asking a judge to dismiss the indictment.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Governor Terry Branstad wants lawmakers to approve changes to Iowa’s property tax system. He says if lawmakers adjourn without passing a property tax bill, it would be a “tragic disservice” to Iowans. The governor is proposing an across-the-board cut of 40 percent in business property taxes over eight years, while Senate Democrats wanted a much smaller reduction aimed at small businesses. Lawmakers were scheduled to end the session on April 17.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The state is balking at funding the removal of small dams that are in place on rivers throughout Iowa and have been blamed for the deaths of 18 people since 1998. The Des Moines Register reports that since 2008, the state has spent from $200,000 to $1.8 million a year to replace or lower such dams. Governor Terry Branstad vetoed a spending measure last year. Lawmakers haven’t approved any money for the task this year.

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) — A woman convicted of stealing more than $537,000 while working in the Black Hawk County Clerk of Courts office has been given parole. That after serving about 70 days of her 10-year prison sentence. The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier says the prison release of Tina Zieser surprised Black Hawk County’s chief prosecutor. Parole officials say Zieser is considered a low risk to reoffend and poses no safety threat to the public. She remains on parole until August 2016.