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Legal experts support confidential juvenile court records

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Two legal experts are recommending the court records of Iowa’s convicted juveniles be confidential and unavailable to the public. Jerry Foxhoven, the executive director of the Neal & Bea Smith Legal Clinic, and Mike Sorci, head of the Youth Law Center in Des Moines, met Wednesday with a state task force studying justice policy reform. The group is expected to make recommendations within the next month on reforms in a variety of areas, including juvenile court records.

The Des Moines Register reports that the men said confidential juvenile court records would help young people who have completed probation turn their lives around. Both of them recommended changing state law so juvenile court records remain confidential unless a judge orders them to be public.

Atlantic man arrested on drug charges

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says an Atlantic man was arrested this (Thursday) morning on drug charges. 32-year old Bryan Matthew Kirby faces charges that include Possession of A Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine), and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Kirby was taken to the Cass County Jail where he was subsequently charged with felony Possession of Contraband in Jail. Kirby remains at the Cass County Jail on $6,300 bond.

Also arrested today (Thursday) in Cass County, was 37-year old Robert Lee Atkinson, of Massena, who was taken into custody on a Sheriff’s Office warrant for Driving While Barred, and Eluding. Atkinson was taken to the Cass County Jail where he remains on $2,000 bond.

And on Wednesday, 23-year old Carly Jean Seddon, of Atlantic, was arrested by Cass County deputies on an Atlantic Police Department warrant for Assault Causing Injury. Seddon was taken to the Cass County Jail where she was released later that day on $1000 bond.

Iowa DOT driver’s license stations closed Oct. 8 for training

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

All Iowa Department of Transportation driver’s license stations and county treasurer’s driver’s license issuance sites, will be closed Thursday, Oct. 8, for employee training. The stations will resume operations Friday, Oct. 9, at 8:30 a.m.

Domestic violence victims have new 24/7 statewide helpline

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Victims of domestic violence anywhere in Iowa have a new outlet for help anytime of the day. Sara Eastman is director of the Iowa Domestic Violence Helpline, which opened today (Thursday).  “We are anticipating about 60,000 calls a year,” Eastman said. The helpline is believed to be the only one of its kind in the country. Most of the agencies around the state that help survivors of domestic violence have a local crisis line, but at certain times of the day, those calls may go unanswered.

Iowa Domestic Abuse Helpline“All the individual programs within the state are able to roll their phones to our helpline whenever needed,” Eastman said. “So, whether that be after hours, on the weekends, during staff development or training days, whenever they need that relief,” Eastman said. Calls to the helpline are free. The call center is located in Sioux Center and is funded by a grant awarded by the Iowa Attorney General’s office.

“We currently have a staff of 15 and we have at least two people on per shift. We will fluctuate that as we see a need, as the number gets out there a bit more, we will adjust our staffing accordingly,” Eastman said. The number is 1-800-770-1650. The staff members are trained to handle everything from crisis situations to counseling. According to Eastman, the statewide helpline could be especially beneficial to victims living in rural areas — as they may be hesitant to call their local program out of fear the person on the other end of the line will recognize them.

(Radio Iowa)

Mock caucus for kids in Cass County Nov. 19th

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucus is still months away. However, for Cass County 7th through 12th grade students, a mock caucus will occur on November 19, 2015. Both political parties are partnering with the Iowa Secretary of State and the schools so that students can get a realistic caucus experience that will cover all aspects of the caucus process.

Caucus 101Students in the CAM and Atlantic School Districts can obtain and complete caucus registration forms at their schools. Students from the Griswold Community Schools can pick up from and return registration forms to Griswold City Hall, Griswold Public Library, the Griswold American’s newspaper office, Lewis Community Library, or Lewis City Hall. Registration forms need to be submitted by October 29th. Students can also sign up the night of the caucus but early registration is recommended.

Youth should present themselves at the Atlantic Middle School (Auditorium entrance) at 4:30 p.m. The caucus itself will begin at 5:30 p.m., following dinner which will be provided on location. Parents and teachers are welcome to attend as observers. Young adults who are no longer in high school may also attend the caucus as observers.

Presidential campaign aides have been invited to the emceed event, and campaign materials will be available. For additional information, contact David Wiederstein, Republican Party Chair, at 712-249-8417, or Sherry Toelle, Democratic Party Chair, at 712-243-4861. The project is also on Facebook: Iowa Youth Caucus—Cass County.

Deere & UAW reach tentative deal for 10K workers

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Deere and Company has reached a tentative agreement with the United Auto Workers union to replace the six-year master labor contract that expired Wednesday at midnight. The new deal impacts thousands of people in Iowa. The tentative agreement was announced by John Deere in a news release early Thursday morning.

In the release, company spokesman Ken Golden confirmed the new deal is for six years, pending approval of the union membership. Other terms of the new labor contract won’t be made public until after the deal is ratified. UAW represents approximately 10,000 Deere manufacturing employees at 12 factories in Iowa, Illinois and Kansas.

In Iowa, the contract covers union workers at facilities in Ankeny, Davenport, Dubuque, Ottumwa and Waterloo.

(Radio Iowa)

Wet weather delays HWY 6/7th Street for another 3 weeks

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

September’s 5.71 inches of rain here in Atlantic didn’t help efforts to complete the reconstruction of 7th Street/Highway 6. Iowa DOT District 4 Transportation Coordinator Scott Suhr, in Atlantic, says not much progress was made over the past few weeks, due to the rain.  With mostly drier weather this week, crews have been able to get some work done.

Looking east from 7th & Mulberry

Looking east from 7th & Mulberry

Looking west from 7th & Mulberry

Looking west from 7th & Mulberry

Work is underway on sidewalks, and they’re setting up to pour a 25-foot east section of the mainline this Friday. Once that’s done and cured, crews can start working on a 16-foot section of the southern portion of the road. Suhr says he expects (weather permitting), the project will finally be completed in about three-weeks.

Wet weather isn’t the only problem that could affect completion of the project. Temperatures are dropping. Suhr says if overnight temperatures get below freezing and stays there, that could affect how the concrete cures. So far though, that hasn’t been a problem, and they don’t expect it to be an issue prior to completion of the project.

Various issues have affected the project since it began, but Suhr says that’s to be expected. He says he knows the detours have been frustrating for both motorists and businesses along the road, but most people have been understanding.

Shelby County Road re-opens to traffic

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A road in Shelby County that was closed last month for the replacement of a pipe is now open. The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency reports 1500th Street, which had been closed over an unnamed tributary of the East Branch of the West Nishnabotna River (just west of Redline), is open following the replacement of a pipe under the road.

(Podcast) KJAN 8-a.m. News, 10/1/2015

News, Podcasts

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

More area and State news from KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

Play

Atlantic School Board News

News

October 1st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic School Board received updates Wednesday evening with regard to district technology progress, school progress and planning, and the budget. The work session served as a sort of “primer” for what they can expect in the year ahead, as well as a familiarization with various acronyms, which was helpful for new school board members.

Roger Warne

Roger Warne

Prior to making his report to the Board, District Technology Coordinator Roger Warne (Warn) gave new Board members Alison Bruckner, Jenny Williams, and Keith Swanson, former Board President Kristy Pellett and current Board President Josh McLaren, new 1:1 (one to one) laptop computers. The same type of laptops are issued to students. Pellett and McLaren were issued their laptops almost 8 years ago. Warne said their computers are so old he cannot even effectively update them.

Warne said the Technology Department keeps very busy managing and repairing the district’s computers and related components. He said they manage and repair 1,200 Mac devices, 95 I-pads, 135 Chrome Books, 100 Windows devices, and 475 1:1 devices that include the Windows Operating System.

The Technology Dept. also handles the District’s surveillance cameras and recorders. There are 45 digital cameras and assorted analog cameras. The analog cameras are located in the Washington and Schuler Schools. Warne says one of the keys to the operation of cameras and computers is the District’s network system, which includes fiber optics. The current bandwidth is 200 megabits, with an average of 50-to 60-percent of that used each day. The department also handles the district’s phone system, which he says will need replacing in years to come.

He says also, the district has saved about $80,000 through a reduction in the number of printer/copiers that are being made available.

Board Secretary/Business Manager Mary Beth Fast reported to the Board they will receive budget projections next month from Gary Sinclair, who represents PMA Financial and the Iowa Association of School Boards (IASB). Sinclair will cover five year projections with regard to the District’s unspent balance.