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Shelby County Pioneer Cemetery update


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A meeting between a local historian group and township trustees was held Wednesday evening in Shelby County to discuss a pioneer cemetery. The Grove Township Trustees and the Western Iowa Pioneer Cemetery Association or WIPCA held a group session at the Fire Hall in Earling with Shelby County Supervisor Steve Kenkel as the moderator. The meeting was to gather the two groups together in order to find a solution to the Doyle Pioneer Cemetery in rural Shelby County.

WIPCA has been working on cleaning up rural cemeteries throughout Shelby and Harrison County with the Doyle being one of them. However, the pioneer cemetery does not have a road to it so the association is only able to get to the cemetery when crops are not planted in the fields surrounding the cemetery. The first item on the agenda was the maintenance schedule for the cemetery. Kenkel said the trustees’ budget was set for this year but there is money to be had in order to keep up the maintenance at the Doyle. Trustee Mike Tremel agreed.

“When I came into this thing, there was no money to be spent. My son and I use to mow those two north cemeteries and they knocked us down from three mowing to two a year five to ten years ago. We were thinking there was no money to be had but now that we know there is money, we will mow it more often.”

The discussion then moved on to the boundaries of the cemetery and where the fence will be placed. The trustees are currently working with the landowners on where the outlining area is for the cemetery. The biggest topic was in regards to gaining access to the pioneer cemetery during the whole year as oppose to twice a year as it is now. Kenkel then laid the ground work on options for an access lane to the cemetery. The first was leasing a portion of land from the landowners but he said the landowners were not interested. “The main two reasons they are not interested in that is: one liability and two, they don’t think it’s a long term solution. And that’s really our goal here.”

The supervisor also stated he had talked with the landowners about purchasing land and one would be interested in selling a half an acre for a lane from Highway 37 into the Doyle Cemetery. During the meeting, Kenkel walked the group through what it would take in order for the lane to be established. In the report, the total cost would be between $20-30,000 for the half acre, new fencing, creating an approach off the highway, new gates at the cemetery and installing a drop tube culvert and berm over the washout area. Kenkel said this plan would be something WIPCA could discuss and possibly implement in the fall.

“And we are going to be looking at this fall to a year from now as a timeframe when this could maybe get done and implemented. So it gives us some time to work on this, if that’s what you (WIPCA) want to look at.” As a 501© (3) organization, WIPCA would have the opportunity to apply for and receive grant funding from organizations such as Shelby County Community Foundation and the Iowa West Foundation. WIPCA members said at the end of the meeting they will take the information provided and discuss amongst themselves as to what their next step. More information regarding the Doyle Cemetery will be released at a later date.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

(Updated) Rollover accident southwest of Atlantic this morning


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A Nebraska man was injured during a single-vehicle rollover accident near Atlantic, just before 5:30 this (Thursday) morning. Cass County Chief Deputy Sheriff John Westering says 25-year old Michael J. Schrader, of Lincoln, NE, was driving a 2001 Chevy Impala registered to Steven Barbier, of Omaha, when the accident happened. Westering said the car was traveling south on Highway 6 about 3-miles south of Lansing Road, when Schrader swerved to miss a dog.

The German Shepherd, which belongs to Schrader, had gotten away from him earlier. He told authorities he had taken the dog for a walk when it got away from him. He was driving the car in an attempt to find it.

When the dog  ran out of the ditch in front of the car, Schrader swerved to avoid hitting the animal. The vehicle crossed the road and entered the east ditch before rolling onto its top. Schrader suffered minor injuries and was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Atlantic Police located the uninjured dog about a half-hour later. The car sustained about $3,500 damage during the accident. No charges will be filed.

Diapers on cows? Sen. Grassley blasts plans to cut methane gas emissions

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Some climate change activists blame at least part of the planet’s weather problems on methane gas emissions from livestock. The Obama administration is ordering the U-S-D-A and the E-P-A to create a bio-gas roadmap to find ways to reduce those emissions. Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says the roadmap is a questionable notion and he’s writing a letter to Gina McCarthy, the head of the E-P-A.  “The roadmap is intended to reduce dairy sector greenhouse gas emissions through voluntary strategies by 25% by 2020,” Grassley says. “My questions for Administrator McCarthy center on the impact the plan has on the average U.S. dairy farms.”

Grassley, a Republican, says much of our country’s midsection was populated by some 600-million buffalo when pioneers first began settling in the region and there wasn’t a greenhouse gas problem back then. “You’ve gotta’ have a historical approach,” Grassley says. “Are you going to put diapers on cows? I don’t think so. I don’t think you’re going to shut down cows from producing methane gas. That’s the way God made ’em.” The plan calls on livestock producers to make changes that would reduce greenhouse gas emissions voluntarily, but Grassley remains skeptical of the motives.

“It’s hard to forget only a couple of years ago, this administration was trying to push Cap & Trade through Congress,” Grassley says. “It seems only right to be suspicious of the administration’s intentions. All you’ve got to do is look at fugitive dust as another example.” Dust can be stirred up during routine farming and that so-called “fugitive dust” was labeled by some as air pollution responsible for a host of negative impacts on human health, eroding the soil, strangling plants and causing reduced visibility that leads to traffic accidents.

(Radio Iowa)

Atlantic receives another Tree City USA Award

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The City of Atlantic has received yet another Tree City USA award. It’s the 19th consecutive year Atlantic has qualified for the award. A new flag, and a certificate designating the City as being tree friendly, was presented by Dolly Bergman and members of the local “Tree’s Forever” committee tasked with making sure the City qualifies for the award and does its part to keep Atlantic green.IMG_20140416_173410_468

She said one of the hardest requirements is keeping track of how much the City actually spends on its forestry, or tree-care budget, which must be at least $2 per capita. Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring helped with that. And, information provided by Trees Forever also helped the City meet the requirement. The City’s expenditures for trees and related services amounted to $14,822 in 2013.

The Tree City USA flag will be hung on the pole located in the Atlantic City Park, under a new American flag which replaces a storm-tattered American flag. Bergman says this year, the Tree’s Forever group will be working with Atlantic 4th graders on Friday, April 25th (The official Iowa “Arbor Day”), to plant a tree on the grounds of Schuler Elementary School. In addition, each of the 4th graders will receive a tiny Norway Spruce tree they can take home, plant and watch grow.

7AM Newscast 04-17-2014

News, Podcasts

April 17th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson


Atlantic Chamber Director resigns; County-wide animal shelter discussed


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce’ Executive Director has resigned. City Administrator Doug Harris made that announcement during Wednesday evening’s meeting of the Atlantic City Council. Megan Roberts, who has served in the position since August 2012, is leaving to take a job with a local insurance agency. Her resignation is effective May 1st. IMG_20140416_173253_077 

In other business, the City may once again be looking becoming a County-wide pet shelter. Doug Harris said Councilman Randy Fischer, from Marne, approached him with regard to the possibility of Atlantic’s shelter accepting a couple of Marne’s stray cats and dogs. Harris said about 4-to 6-years ago there was some discussion about creating a County-wide shelter, with Atlantic as the host.

Harris said it makes sense to have a shelter for stray animals since several communities are having problems with unwanted or stray animals being dumped-off in other communities or the rural areas. He said “The economies of scales of expanding our facility and handling the whole county would make sense…to be paid for as a County levy.” He said it would be up to the Atlantic City Council to establish a policy.

Harris said there are times when Atlantic’s facility can handle additional animals, but other times when it is at capacity. Mayor Dave Jones said the City could start sending the County a bill for that service, just as it does for the libraries, or, it could simply shut the shelter down. Doug Harris said he and others could sit down with other City leaders from around the County and see if there is an interest in a County-wide shelter and if or how they should proceed from there. The City may also once again approach the Board of Supervisors and hold discussions on the matter.

In his report to the Council, Mayor Dave Jones reminded citizens of the Ordinance prohibiting yard sale and other such signs on utility poles and public right-of-ways. He also reminded citizens to mow their lawns when the grass gets to be 3 or 4 inches tall. The City, as previously mentioned, plans on being more aggressive this year in getting after property owners whose grass grows unsightly.

And, Councilman Dana Halder asked if there is anyone who would like to donate a good, used, working wheel chair to the Atlantic Public Library, they would appreciate it, since the one they had was vandalized by a couple of youth.

Rollover accident southwest of Atlantic this morning


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

One person was injured during a single-vehicle accident near Atlantic, just before 5:30 this (Thursday) morning. Cass County Chief Deputy Sheriff John Westering told KJAN News the Cass County 9-1-1 Center received a call at 5:27-a.m. about three-miles south of Atlantic, just north of Lansing Road. Upon arrival, there was a 2001 Chevy Impala on its top in the east ditch. Westering said the driver of the car apparently swerved or took some sort of evasive action, causing him to lose control. The southbound vehicle crossed the road and entered the east ditch before rolling onto its top. The male driver suffered what were described as “non-life threatening” injuries. He was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital for treatment.

The driver of the vehicle was the only occupant of the car. His name is different from that of the vehicle’s registered owner, and as such, his name has not yet been released. The accident remains under investigation.

Minor injuries during accident in Red Oak Wed. afternoon


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities say a Red Oak woman suffered  minor injuries during a collision  Wednesday afternoon at the intersection of North 8th Street and East Senate Avenue, in Red Oak. 73-year old Carroll Gary hit her head when her 2014 KIA Optima was hit by a 1997 Dodge pickup. Gary was checked out by Red Oak Rescue personnel, but refused transport to the hospital. The driver of the pickup, 82-year old Delaine Lundgren, of Red Oak, was cited for Failure to stop at a Stop sign.

Officials say Lundgren’s truck was traveling east on East Senate at around 2-p.m. Wednesday, and had stopped at the stop sign with North 8th Street, but then pulled away from the sign and hit Gary’s car on the driver’s side door. The accident happened as her car turned off of Highway 34 onto North 8th Street, headed northbound and approached the intersection with East Senate.

Damage from the collision amounted to $6,000.

NE woman arrested this morning in Pott. County on a Montgomery Co. warrant


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County say an Omaha woman was arrested early this (Thursday) morning in Pottawattamie County on a valid Montgomery County warrant. 41-year old Angela D. Franks was arrested at around 2:40-a.m. by Pottawattamie County authorities following a traffic stop. Franks, who was wanted on a warrant for Contempt of Court/Failure to Pay Child Support, was brought to the Pottawattamie-Montgomery County line and transported by deputies in Montgomery County to the Law Enforcement Center, where she was being held on $1,000 cash bond.

Experts say 18-year old who killed an Atlantic boy is competent to stand trial


April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Two mental health professionals who examined a teenager charged with killing his 5-year-old foster brother testified Wednesday that, although the youth is emotionally immature, they think he is competent to stand trial. The Omaha World-Herald reports it remains to be seen, however, whether 18-year old Cody Metzker-Madsen stands trial on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of Dominic Elkins, from Atlantic.

Metzker-Madsen’s attorney questioned a psychologist and a psychiatrist, during a hearing at the Harrison County Courthouse. Both acknowledged that the teen has extensive problems. Andersen said Metzker-Madsen exhibits symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder and fetal-alcohol syndrome. Andersen said Metzker-Madsen’s mother, used methamphetamine while pregnant with him.

District Court Judge Kathleen Kilnoski will decide whether Metzker-Madsen stands trial. The judge did not say when she would issue her decision.Authorities believe that Metzker-Madsen, who was 17 at the time, killed Dominic as the two boys played outdoors Aug. 31st at the rural home of their foster parents north of Logan, where they were staying. The child’s body was found in a wooded ravine. An autopsy by the state medical examiner determined that Dominic died as a result of blunt-force head injuries and drowning.

Metzker-Madsen has pleaded not guilty and is being held at the Harrison County Jail in Logan.