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4 vehicle vs. deer accidents reported in Page County

News

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Page County Sheriff’s Office says four vehicle-versus-deer accidents occurred over the past week. None of the collisions resulted in injuries. There were two run-ins with deer reported Monday morning. Officials say just before 7-a.m., vehicles driven by 32-year old Shawn Pappas, of Red Oak, and 60-year old Dianna Drake, of Stanton, collided on westbound Highway 48, when Drake braked hard to avoid a deer which had suddenly appeared on the road. Pappas, who was following the Drake vehicle, was unable to stop in time, and hit the rear of her car, causing it to become disable. The vehicles sustained a combined $6,000 damage. No citations were issued.

Less than a half-hour later, a pickup driven by 17-year old Robert Button, of Shenandoah, hit and killed a deer that appeared on C Avenue. The accident caused $1,700 damage to the pickup, which was towed from the scene.

Late Saturday night, a pickup driven by 18-year old Michael Pittman, of Clarinda, collided with a deer, as Pittman was traveling south on Willow Avenue, in Page County. The vehicle sustained $1,500 damage. And, Friday evening, an SUV driven by 31-year old Stacy Bolton, of Clarinda, hit a deer on O Avenue. The impact caused $2,500 damage.

8AM Newscast 11-01-2011

News, Podcasts

November 1st, 2011 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Play

Cass County Board of Supervisors hear update on COG/COOP matters

News

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors, Monday were updated on the County’s Continuity of Government (COG), and Continuity of Operations Plans. Rob Koppert, E-9-1-1 Coordinator and Assistant to Emergency Management Director Mike Kennon, explained why those plans are needed. He says both plans would spell out how government functions would continue, should members of the Board of Supervisors be wiped out in a disaster, and/or if any of the county’s physical facilities are destroyed.  The initiative began a number of years ago, according to Koppert, but is only now beginning to take shape across the State.

Koppert says Mike Kennon has been working with the State Planner with regard to the COOP/COG plans, and it appears the Emergency Management Department is ready to move forward with plans to meet with County government officials to discuss those plans.  He says Kennon has a list of functions each entity in the County will need to discuss and prioritize, with regard to the plan. That includes the various County Department heads, who will determine the needs for each department, before a disaster strikes, so those items can quickly be acquired if needed.

Supervisor Chuck Rieken asked if Kennon wasn’t “reinventing the wheel,” when it comes to the COG/COOP Plans, because the State or other agencies have something similar in place. Koppert said there are templates available with which to guide the process, but the COG/COOP Plans for each county, would be County Specific. That would include where the County offices would set up operations if the courthouse were to be destroyed or damaged to the point where normal functions would be impossible.

The County is also required to develop such a plan, according to the Federal initiative ordered by a Presidential directive. The recent purchase and installation this past Spring, of a new 175 kilowatt Emergency Generator, is part of the County’s COG plan.

7AM Newscast 11-01-2011

News, Podcasts

November 1st, 2011 by Chris Parks

w/Ric Hanson

Play

October ends as one of Iowa’s driest Octobers, and it was warmer, too

News, Weather

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

Humidifiers have been running almost non-stop for weeks as one of Iowa’s driest Octobers in more than 20 years is now over. State climatologist Harry Hillaker says the month that just ended saw very little rainfall, though it wasn’t a record-breaker. “The driest one is in a class all by itself, way back in October of 1952,” Hillaker says. “Most of the state had no rain what-so-ever and the statewide average was just 2/100ths of an inch for the month. That’s our driest calendar month of any month for the year, not just for October.”

Here in Atlantic, we received just .21” of rain during the month. The normal average is 2.54-inches. While official State numbers are still being tabulated, this October saw a statewide average between three-quarters of an inch and eight-tenths of an inch of rain, which will rank it around the 10th driest Iowa October on record. It was the driest October since 1988 when we only averaged two-thirds of an inch of rain statewide. Hillaker say the just-ended month was also warmer than usual.

“The month is going to average out about three-degrees warmer than normal,” he says. “We actually got off to a rather cold start. We had an unusually cold September and the first couple of days in October were well below normal as well. A little bit of cold weather was mixed in, especially the last week or two, but most days were above normal.” As for the month ahead, November may follow suit, at least as far as warmth.

“November, historically when we’re in a La Nina weather pattern as we are right now, has quite strong odds of being warmer than normal and just a teeny tendency to be on the dry side of normal as well,” Hillaker says. Based on the forecast though, he says Iowa may see rain showers as soon as tomorrow (Wednesday) with an even-larger storm front possibly moving over the state this weekend.

The average high for October in Atlantic, was 68.5-degrees, which was slightly warmer than the normal average of 65.7. The average low was 35.9, which was slightly cooler than the normal average of 38.1.

Midwest economic survey takes negative turn

News

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – For the first time in nearly two years, the overall Business Conditions Index for a nine-state region of the Midwest and Plains took a negative turn.  Today’s (Tuesday’s) report on the survey of supply managers and executives says the index dropped to 49.9 in October, compared with 52.2 in September. Organizers say any survey score above 50 suggests growth while a score below 50 suggests decline for that factor.

Creighton University economics professor Ernie Goss oversees the survey. He says one reading slightly below a growth-neutral 50 doesn’t signal a recession. But Goss says the October figure is evidence that the weakness in the national economy has hit the regional economy.

The states are Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota.

CCMH Audit report released

News

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

ATLANTIC – Gronewold, Bell, Kyhnn & Co., P.C. CPAs have released an audit report on Cass County Memorial Hospital, Atlantic, Iowa. The auditors reported that the Hospital’s Unrestricted Funds revenues totaled $31,689,800 for the year ended june 30, 2011, a 3.6 percent decrease from 2010. The revenues included $27,909,900 in net patient revenue, $844,700 in other operating revenue, $1,989,600 from the county and $297,300 in interest on investments.

Expenses for the year totaled $31,057,600, a 3.3 percent decrease from the prior year, and included $5,976,800 for nursing services, $12,993,800 for other professional services and $8,077,000 for fiscal and administrative services. The decrease in revenues and expenses was primarily due to the Hospital discontinuing its home care and hospice services during the year.

There were no corrective measures indicated necessary for this audit. A copy of the audit report is available for review in the office of the Auditor of State and the Hospital Administrator’s office.

(Press Release from CCMH)

Fire destroys machine shed in rural Atlantic this morning

News

November 1st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

(5:00-a.m.) In an update to a story posted earlier this morning: A smoldering  ember from a controlled burn was the apparent cause of a fire early this (Monday) morning about four-miles west of Atlantic, that destroyed a machine shed on the Dave and Lynn Eckles farm  The fire at 57899 Indian Creek Street was reported by Lynn Eckles at around 2:25-a.m.

Atlantic Fire Chief Mark McNees told KJAN News the structure, which was basically a pole barn with metal sides, formerly used as a hog farrowing house, was fully engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived. The structure was close to three, nearby, recently filled propane tanks, so that was a concern as crews sought to keep the flames from spreading.

McNees said the Eckles’ had conducted a controlled burning of leaves in a grated pit area on Monday afternoon. It appears a spark from the fire made it’s way into another pile near the building and smoldered for some time, before erupting in flames. He declared the fire accidental in nature. No injuries were reported. Firefighters were on the scene for a little over two-hours. A dollar amount of the damage is not currently available, but McNees said there wasn’t much in the building that was lost.

Nebraska man sentenced on firerarms charges in western Iowa

News

October 31st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The U-S Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa said Monday, a Nebraska man was sentenced Friday 15-months in prison, for being an illegal user of drugs, while in possession of a firearm and ammunition. Attorney Nicholas A. Klinefeldt said Judge James E. Gritzner also ordered 26-year old Eric Steven Blevins of Norfolk, Nebraska,  to serve two-years of supervised release following his imprisonment.  And, he’ll have to pay a $100 penalty to the Crime Victim Fund. Blevins’ pistol and ammunition were also seized.  He remains in the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation of the Federal Bureau of Prisons facility at which he will serve his sentence.

Klinefeldt says on January 26th, 2011, the federal grand jury returned a one-count indictment against Blevins, charging him with being an unlawful user of marijuana in possession of a 9-mm pistol and ammunition. The charges were filed against him after Council Bluffs Police officersfound Blevins and another person at a Council Bluffs motel with marijuana and K2 (“synthetic marijuana”), on October 3rd, 2010

Outside the window of the motel room in which Blevins was staying, officers found an unloaded 9mm pistol and ammunition. A Subsequent investigation by the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives further linked the firearm and ammunition to Blevins, and demonstrated that Blevins had a lengthy history of use of marijuana, including on or about October 3rd, 2010. Blevins entered a guilty plea to the charge on June 30, 2011.

The case against him was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa and investigated by the Council Bluffs Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Iowa shows rebuilding of I-680 on the internet

News

October 31st, 2011 by Ric Hanson

AMES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Department of Transportation is showcasing the rebuilding of a flood-damaged stretch of Interstate 680 that links Iowa and Nebraska on its website. A 3-mile stretch of the highway north of Council Bluffs had some of the worst damage from a summer of flooding along the Missouri River. It’s to open on Wednesday, nearly two months ahead of schedule.

The department has put a time-lapsed video of the rebuilding from Sept. 30 to Oct. 25 on its website, plus a collection of photographs of the flooding and rebuilding on other highways, including I-29. The video and photos are available at http://www.iowadot.gov/floods