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2 Tabor residents charged with execution-style shooting of dogs


May 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

An investigation into the execution-style shooting of several dogs May 12th in Fremont County, has led to the arrest of two people, charged with animal abuse. The Fremont County Sheriff’s Department reports their office received a call at around 1-a.m. May 12th, with regard to the shooting of several dogs that had allegedly been chasing livestock. During their investigation, deputies learned the dogs did not chase the livestock, and over the next several days, learned the animals had been shot execution-style. Each of the dogs suffered from a single gunshot wound.

Deputies were able to determine 65-year old Orrie Covert, Jr., and 30-year old Amber Sharp, both of Tabor, were responsible for the shooting of four dogs. Evidence was gathered, and a search warrant carried out at a residence on Tuesday (May 21st) resulted in the confiscation of numerous illegal wild game animals. Covert, Jr. and Sharp were arrested on four counts each of animal abuse. They were being held in the Fremont County Jail on $8,000 bond, each.

Numerous charges are still pending as a result of the search warrant, and through the Iowa DNR. The Fremont County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by officers with the Sidney and Tabor Police Departments, and Iowa Department of Natural Resouces.

Iowa lawmakers look to end legislative session


May 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa lawmakers are expected back in the state Capitol on Wednesday and legislative leaders say they are close to concluding the 2013 session. There was no floor action in the state House or State Senate on Monday or Tuesday. But legislative leaders say they have been working privately to resolve differences on key issues, like education policy, property tax cuts and low-income health care. Votes could come on those issues soon.

Republican House Speaker Kraig Paulsen, of Hiawatha, says Tuesday it was possible lawmakers could finish their work on Wednesday. Lawmakers must also finish their work on several key budget bills, including the Health and Human Services budget, which provides funding to state health departments.

6th Annual Western Iowa No-till (WIN) Field Day to Focus on Practical Application Tips

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the ISU Extension service report the 6th Annual Western Iowa No-till (WIN) Demonstration Field Day, scheduled for June 11th at the Carstens 1880 Farmstead south of Shelby, Iowa, will address a wide variety of topics for anyone interested in learning more about practical application and trouble-shooting for no-till production. The day starts at 8 AM when registration and vendor displays open. A wide variety of local agribusinesses will be on hand to visit with producers in the morning and demonstrate their services/equipment.

The field day begins at 9 AM with breakout sessions covering common challenges of corn-on-corn no-till and an overview of recent Iowa Soybean Association trials on deep ripping and nitrogen placement. The breakout sessions will be followed by a weather outlook for the coming crop year, and a lunchtime discussion on the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. After lunch, keynote speaker Neil Harl will present “A Look Ahead for Agriculture: Major Concerns on the Horizon”. Lunch will be provided free of charge to all in attendance, including steak sandwiches grilled by the Pottawattamie County Cattlemen. The day will wrap up with a presentation on achieving success in long-term no-till and cover crop usage from an Iowa producer perspective.

Anyone with an interest in the practical application of no-till production, whether looking for ideas to begin adopting no-till practices or a long-time no-till producer looking to improve production results, is encouraged to attend this daylong educational event. Nearly 200 ag producers and ag professionals attended the 2012 event, learning about effective soil stewardship strategies. In addition to the educational sessions at the 2013 WIN Field Day, there will be plenty of time for farmers to visit informational displays, vendor exhibits and network with other producers. 4 hours of CCA Credits have been applied for, and will be available at no cost for Certified Crop Advisors needing additional continuing education units this year.

There is no charge to attend this event, but pre-registration is requested by June 6th to ensure a lunch will be available. Registration can be completed by e-mailing csgorham@iastate.edu, or by calling the Harrison County Extension Office at 888-644-2105. More information is available at many local ISU Extension and NRCS offices, or can be found online at www.extension.iastate.edu/cass.

The field day is brought to you by NRCS, ISU Extension and the Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD) in Harrison, Pottawattamie, Cass and Shelby Counties, along with many local supporting agribusinesses. 2013 Business Sponsors include Farm Bureau in East & West Pottawattamie, Shelby, Cass & Harrison Counties, A & M Green Power, Brokaw Supply Company, Titan Machinery, Sorensen Equipment Co., Heartland Ag, Iowa Soybean Association, Iowa Corn Growers Association, Farmers & Merchants State Bank, Shelby County State Bank, United Bank of Iowa and Bartlett Grain Co.

Iowa News Headlines: Wed., May 22nd, 2013


May 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say a man suspected of abducting two girls near an Iowa bus stop committed suicide. Forty-two-year-old Michael Klunder was found dead Monday night at a rural property northeast of Dayton. Federal, state and local law enforcement are searching by air, land and water for 15-year-old Kathlynn Shepard. She and a 12-year-old girl were taken near a bus stop in Dayton, about 60 miles north of Des Moines, on Monday after accepting a ride from a stranger. The younger girl escaped.

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Officials blame an outbreak of norovirus for sickening dozens of students at a Sioux City elementary school. The local Health Department says lab results show the virus caused more than 40 students and three staff members at Bryant Elementary to become ill last Thursday. Another 33 students reported being sick Friday. Norovirus is a common food-borne pathogen. Symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea.

CHARLES CITY, Iowa (AP) — Rescuers called to the scene of a train derailment found the engineer and conductor atop one of the derailed locomotives in an area surrounded by rising floodwaters. No one was injured in the late Monday derailment of the Canadian Pacific train. Workers were safely rescued. A railroad spokesman says the derailment was caused by a washed-out rail line.

CHICAGO (AP) — An Iowa letter carrier has been sentenced to 37 years in prison for sending dud pipe bombs with threatening letters signed “The Bishop.” U.S. District Judge Robert Dow issued the sentence yesterday, saying John Tomkins “engaged in a reign of terror.”

Norovirus blamed for sickening Sioux City students


May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Officials are blaming an outbreak of norovirus for an illness that sickened dozens of students at a Sioux City elementary school. The Sioux City Journal reports that Siouxland District Health Department announced Tuesday that lab results show the virus caused more than 40 students and three staff members at Bryant Elementary School to become ill on Thursday. Another 33 students reported being sick Friday.

Norovirus is a common food-borne pathogen with symptoms including vomiting and diarrhea. Health department Deputy Director Tyler Brock says it’s unclear where the illness originated or if it was contracted at the school.

Semi burns up near Anita


May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Firefighters from Anita and Wiota responded to the scene of a semi-tractor trailer fire this (Tuesday) afternoon, near the intersection of Highways 148 and 83.

Photo courtesy Mike Kennon, Cass County Emergency Mgmt. Director.

The call came in at around 12:40-p.m. The truck was reportedly hauling food and or restaurant supplies. No injuries were reported. Cass County Emergency Management Coordinator Mike Kennon told KJAN News the fire started in the engine compartment of the semi. Crews were still on the scene late into the afternoon,  pumping fuel out of the truck’s tanks and cleaning up the debris, before it could be hauled away.

Additional details are currently not available.

Shelby County Supervisors approve hog confinement permit application

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Officials in ShelbyCountyheard from concerned citizens during a regularly scheduled Shelby County Supervisors meeting this (Tuesday) morning. The residents voiced their concerns over the proposed construction of hog confinement facility. Under the proposal by John Arkfeld, of Arkfeld Pork, construction would take place at the intersection of Mulberry and 2400th Street.CountyOfficials along with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources went through the process by first announcing the proposal through a public notice and then had an on-site inspection last Tuesday. Following the inspection, the DNR andShelbyCounty officials went on to go through the process of the MasterMatrix. There are many items on the MasterMatrix and is scored on a points system. The area of land designated for the construction of the hog confinement was approved with a score of 465. The score to pass is 440. However, neighboring citizens are concerned about water usage for the hogs along with water quality and smell.

Shelby County Auditor Marsha Carter received 4 written comments with the first being a petition against the construction. The petition was signed by 10 residents in the area. Tim Graeve, another resident, wrote a letter to the county in favor of the construction, with a few considerations pertaining to an adjustment in where the site was at, and road upgrades. Following the written comments, several people spoke about their concerns over the construction of the hog confinement. 

The proposed hog confinement would hold around 10,000 head of hogs. Other concerns discussed by those in attendance were manure being transported in the area, dust on the roads and more well issues. After the issues from residents at the Supervisors meeting, John Arkfeld, one of the proprietors for the hog confinement being discussed, offered a response to the concerns. He said “One of the concerns is the water and I get that. This is a 9,600 unit but when the pigs are fat there will only be 7,200. With the finished head space they say you use 1 to 1.2 gallons of water a day. Farrowing units use 4 to 9 gallons per head per day. So if you look at the farrowing units and there are 2,000 sows, 4 to 9 gallons, which is almost twice as much water as I will use. I don’t think that should be an issue.” Arkfeld said should have been in better contact with the residents in the area before the notice went to the general public and apologized for that. Supervisor Steve Kenkel was next to speak.  He said he’s talked to the DNR about the role supervisor’s play in the process, and that is to approve the Matrix system based on a points system. The rating, along with comments made will be forwarded to the DNR, who has the final say on approving or not, the permit.

The Supervisors approved the MasterMatrix for Arkfeld Pork, because they said, it met the state required points.  

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

Iowa House delays voting on one-time spending bill


May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Debate in the state House on one-time spending proposals has been postponed until later this week.  Republican Speaker Kraig Paulsen of Hiawatha gaveled-in to a sparsely populated House on Tuesday but then quickly adjourned until Wednesday morning. A House staffer says all 99 members won’t be called back to vote until compromises have been reached on education reform, property tax and other outstanding budgets. 
The bill that was set for debate today (Tuesday) in the House includes about $91 million in state money to increase funding for the police officer retirement fund.  The Iowa Senate also adjourned until Wednesday morning. Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, a Democrat from Council Bluffs, says he hopes to start voting on key issues on Wednesday.

Shelby County Leadership 2013


May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Forty Shelby County residents recently participated in Shelby County Leadership 2013, a program designed to maximize the strengths and skills of current and future community leaders. Shelby County Leadership 2013 included two sessions focusing on topics that included understanding ourselves and others, dealing with conflict, understanding change, and leading effective meetings. 

The program was sponsored by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach –ShelbyCounty, SCOPE, and an Iowa West Foundation grant. Training sessions were taught by Jane Nolan Goeken, ISU Extension and Outreach community and economic development program specialist. 

Shelby County Leadership 2013 participants were: Brenda Loftus, McKenzie Langenfeld, Roger Bissen, Todd Jacobsen, Paul Steenhusen, Glennda Mortenson, Robert           Mortenson, Joel McCall, Denise Barnes, Sue Grummert, Steve Kenkel, Debra Sawyer, Christine Petersen, Sheri Tyrrel, Kathy Gau, Tammy Bladt, Holly Rihner, Debbie Pennington, Kathy Goede, Amy Sievers, Tracee Gettys, Jeff Johnson, Paul Wilwerding, Dave Murphy, Tim  Miller, Julie Klein, John Doonan, Jennifer Kelly, Dan Nowatzke, Gina Hoffmann, Mallory Meyer, Paige Larsen, Angie  Newland, Rich Fuhs, Gaylene Shea, Todd Madsen, Dustin Nordby, and Melanie Olsen. 

Shelby County Leadership 2013 planning committee members included Kevin Campbell, Angela Ahrenholtz, Kelli Klaassen, Ann Schwieso, Shilo Bladt, Jane Nielsen, Terry Cox, Bambi Ineson, Terry Torneten, Vicki Gillespie, and Al Hjelle.

Iowa police: Suspect in abduction case found dead


May 21st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DAYTON, Iowa (AP) – Police say a man they believe abducted two girls from a bus stop in central Iowa has been found dead, and one of the girls remains missing.  Authorities say the body of 42-year-old Michael Klunder was found Monday night at a rural property northeast of Dayton. His cause of death has not been released.
Police continue to search Tuesday for 15-year-old Kathlynn Shepard.

Kathlynn Shepard

She and a 12-year-old girl were taken from a Dayton bus stop Monday. Police say they believe Klunder lured the girls into his truck under false pretenses.  The 12-year-old later escaped and was found when she walked out of woods near a farmhouse in Boone County.
Federal, state and local law enforcement as well as volunteers are now searching for the 15-year-old.