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FIRE WEATHER WATCH Thu. for parts of western/sw IA (3/12)

News, Weather

March 12th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

HARRISON-SHELBY-POTTAWATTAMIE-MILLS-MONTGOMERY-FREMONT-PAGE-Counties
329 AM CDT THU MAR 12 2015

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN OMAHA/VALLEY HAS ISSUED A FIRE WEATHER WATCH FOR WIND AND LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM CDT THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH THIS EVENING.

* WINDS…SOUTH 10 TO 20 MPH WITH GUSTS UP TO 30 MPH.

* RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AS LOW AS 20 PERCENT.

* IMPACTS…THE COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS…LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AND WARM TEMPERATURES CAN CONTRIBUTE TO EXTREME FIRE BEHAVIOR.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST TO OCCUR. LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG WARNINGS.

RED FLAG WARNING for parts of the KJAN listening area 3/12/15

News, Weather

March 12th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

SAC-CRAWFORD-CARROLL-MONONA COUNTIES

350 AM CDT THU MAR 12 2015

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN DES MOINES HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG WARNING FOR EXTREME FIRE CONDITIONS…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 6 PM CDT THIS EVENING. THE FIRE WEATHER WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

* WIND…INCREASING TO SOUTH 25 TO 30 MPH BY AFTERNOON

* RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AS LOW AS 25 TO 35 PERCENT IN THE AFTERNOON.

* IMPACTS…FUELS ARE VERY DRY ACROSS THE AREA. ANY FIRES THAT DEVELOP WILL HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO SPREAD RAPIDLY. OUTDOOR BURNING IS NOT RECOMMENDED ACROSS THE REGION.

* TIMING…WINDS WILL INCREASE AFTER NOON WITH PEAK WINDS BETWEEN 1 PM AND 5 PM THIS AFTERNOON. RELATIVE HUMIDITY WILL ALSO BE AT ITS LOWEST DURING THIS TIME.

* FUEL…FINE FUELS SUCH AS GRASSES AND BRUSH ARE VERY DRY AND WILL BURN EASILY.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW…OR WILL SHORTLY. A COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS…LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AND WARM TEMPERATURES WILL CREATE EXPLOSIVE FIRE GROWTH POTENTIAL.

Iowa early News Headlines: Thu., March 12th 2015

News

March 12th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Senate has passed a bill that would go against Governor Terry’s Branstad’s plans to close two state mental health facilities in Iowa. The Senate voted 29-19 yesterday y to pass a bill that would require the state Department of Human Services to develop a comprehensive plan before it can close the state mental health facilities in Clarinda and Mount Pleasant.

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — The Archdiocese of Dubuque is investigating a sexual abuse claim against a former Iowa pastor 30 years after the alleged abuse occurred. The Telegraph Herald reports that the claim, made last year against a former Dubuque pastor, alleges the man sexually abused a minor in 1985. Efforts by the Telegraph Herald to reach the man for comment Wednesday were unsuccessful. The former pastor, now working at a Florida parish, has been placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Governor Terry Branstad has appointed a student from the University of Northern Iowa to the state Board of Regents. UNI on Wednesday announced the appointment of Rachael Johnson as the regents’ student member. Johnson, a freshman education major from Sioux City, will serve as the voice of students attending the state’s three public universities.

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa State says that athletic director Jamie Pollard had successful open heart bypass surgery on Tuesday at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. Pollard suffered a heart attack on Monday while watching his daughters at a track meet in northeast Iowa.

Senate OKs bills to keep mental health facilities open

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Senate has passed a bill that would go against Gov. Terry’s Branstad’s plans to close two state mental health facilities in Iowa. The Senate voted 29-19 Wednesday to pass a bill that would require the state Department of Human Services to develop a comprehensive plan before it can close the state mental health facilities in Clarinda and Mount Pleasant. The Senate also voted 32-18 on another bill that would ensure the facilities remain open through the end of June.

There’s some Republican support for the bills, but it’s unclear if it’s enough to get them passed in both chambers. Branstad’s budget proposal removes funding for two of the four state mental health facilities in Iowa. Branstad calls the facilities outdated and says patients could receive more efficient treatment elsewhere.

Fire Weather Watch Thursday afternoon across parts of western IA

News, Weather

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

AREA COUNTIES: SAC-CRAWFORD-CARROLL-MONONA

432 PM CDT WED MAR 11 2015

Counties in Peach color are included in the Fire Weather Watch

Counties in Peach color are included in the Fire Weather Watch

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS ISSUED A FIRE WEATHER WATCH FOR EXTREME FIRE CONDITIONS…WHICH IS IN EFFECT THURSDAY AFTERNOON FOR PARTS OF WESTERN/NW IA AND NORTHEAST NEBRASKA. THE WATCH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON THROUGH 7-PM FOR MOST COUNTIES AFFECTED.

* WIND…SOUTH 20 TO 30 MPH

* RELATIVE HUMIDITY…20 TO 35 PERCENT

* IMPACTS…FUELS ARE VERY DRY ACROSS THE AREA. ANY FIRES THAT DEVELOP WILL HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO SPREAD RAPIDLY. OUTDOOR BURNING IS NOT RECOMMENDED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST TO OCCUR. LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG WARNINGS.

Detour of IA Hwy196 traffic in Sac County begins at 9 a.m. March 16

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Transportation reports the reconstruction of Iowa 196 in Sac County requires detouring traffic beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, March 16th, until Wednesday, Nov. 25th, weather permitting. Traffic will be routed around the road construction project area using U.S. 71, Sac County Road M-54, and U.S. 20.

Peterson Contractors Inc., of Reinbeck, and Godbersen-Smith Construction Co., of Ida Grove, were awarded this $25.3 million roadway reconstruction project.

California Resident Sentenced for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A U-S District Court Judge in Pottawattamie County, Wednesday, handed down prison sentence for a California woman convicted on drug charges. Chief Judge John A. Jarvey sentenced 22-year old Lorena Morales, of La Habra, California, to 120 months (10-years) in prison for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Morales’ term of imprisonment is to be followed by five years of supervised release.

The U-S Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa says Morales was convicted by a jury after a three-day trial in October of 2014. During trial, it was established that on February 27, 2014, Morales was driving her Nissan Altima when it was stopped by members of the Iowa State Patrol and found to contain sixteen pounds of methamphetamine. Trial testimony showed that Morales was working with several other people, including two others in the vehicle at the time of the stop, in the transportation of methamphetamine from California to various locations in the United States, including Waterloo, Iowa.

On December 16, 2014, Chief Judge Jarvey sentenced co-defendant Mario Ruben Borboa to 160 months in prison, and co-defendant Melissa Nicole Gallardo to 65 months in prison, for their roles in this offense. The investigation was conducted by the Iowa State Patrol and the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, and the case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.

Trial underway for man accused of threatening woman with HIV

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — The trial of an Omaha man accused of threatening to inject an Iowa woman with HIV during an attempted robbery is underway in Council Bluffs. The Daily Nonpareil reports  the trial of 34-year-old Jeshua Divis for a second-degree robbery charge began Tuesday. Prosecutors say Divis told the woman he’d administer an HIV injection if she didn’t hand over her money during the incident in November at Ameristar Casino. Divis was later located at Horseshoe Casino with a syringe and a note referring to injecting HIV.

Defense attorneys say surveillance footage shows Divis made no threatening motions toward the woman. But the woman testified that Divis demanded her money as she was gambling and flashed a note warning her that he’d inject her with HIV if she didn’t comply.

Senate panel reviews medical marijuana legislation

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An effort to expand access to medical marijuana in Iowa has won preliminary approval in the Iowa Senate. A subcommittee reviewed the proposed legislation Wednesday. The bill would make medical marijuana available to people with a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Those approved by a doctor would then purchase marijuana products produced in Iowa at state-run dispensaries.

Last year, the Legislature approved a law that allows some residents with epilepsy to use oil with an ingredient derived from marijuana for treatment. But the law did not establish an in-state program for the production and distribution of the oil. Critics say that as a result, the law is effectively useless.

IFA announced more than $83.7-million to build & preserve 523 affordable housing units

News

March 11th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Finance Authority (IFA) Board of Directors today announced federal Housing Tax Credit and HOME program awards to thirteen affordable rental projects totaling more than $83.7 million to build and preserve 523 affordable housing units in nine Iowa counties. Iowa Finance Authority Executive Director Dave Jamison said “The tax credit and HOME program awards announced today (Wednesday) will improve affordable housing options in communities all across Iowa, ultimately enhancing the quality of life for thousands of Iowans. [The] projects have leveraged an additional $8 million in local contributions….”

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allocates HOME program funding among states and hundreds of localities nationwide. IFA allocates Iowa’s allocation of HOME funds to eligible entities to build and preserve affordable housing.  The IFA Board of Directors approved more than $4.9 million in state HOME funds to support six rental housing tax credit projects.

Among them was the Lincoln School Apartments, in Creston, which received a tax credit award amounting to $412,731 for a project that incorporates Adaptive Reuse and New Construction of 24 affordable units for families. Developer for the project is the Seldin Affordable Housing Program, LLC.