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Discussion on childcare in Cass County set for April 1st


March 31st, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Area business owners or their representatives, and members of organizations with an interest in the future of childcare in Atlantic and Cass County, should make reservations now to attend a free lunch buffet in Atlantic this Friday, April 1st, to discuss the successes, challenges, and future of childcare in Atlantic and Cass County. The event takes place at the Pizza Ranch in Atlantic from noon until1-p.m., Friday.

During the meeting the Ann W. Wickman Child Development Center Operating Committee will explain the successes that have been achieved in our community around childcare, the current state of childcare in our community, and how our work together can improve the long term impact for current and future families and employees.

If you are an area business owner or organization leader and would like to attend the luncheon, Friday, make your reservation by email at dhaynes@nishnavalleyymca.com or by calling 712-243-3934.

Clarinda’s New Superintendent hails from MN


March 31st, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A Minnesotan will take the reigns of the Clarinda Community School District this summer. The Daily NonPareil reports Deron Stender, superintendent of the Virginia Minnesota Public Schools, accepted an offer late Tuesday made by the Clarinda school board following a day of meeting with stakeholder groups and a job interview with the board.

Contract details are still being negotiated, but Stender is expected to begin work July 1st. He will replace Paul Honnold. Stender was selected over Gregg Cruickshank, shared superintendent of South Page and Sidney, and Vance Dalzin, a superintendent from Fox Point, Wisconsin.

Clarinda officials announced the names of the three finalists after seven candidates were screened last week by the school board. Finalists were named based on interviews, reference checks and application materials. Formal interviews were held Tuesday, along with meetings with various stakeholder groups and a tour of district facilities.

Stender said his first challenge on the job will be making time to interact with students and staff since the superintendent’s office is not in a classroom building. He also wants teachers to have autonomy in the classroom and use technology to support instruction.

Stender has served as superintendent for the Virginia Minnesota Public School District since 2012. The district has about 1,800 students, nearly twice that of Clarinda, with about a $22 million budget, compared to Clarinda’s roughly $17 million budget..

Prior to interviewing in Clarinda, Stender was one of four finalists for the superintendent position in Ottumwa earlier this month. Honnold, the current Clarinda superintendent, is leaving after 35 years of service in the district. He made a surprise announcement in February about his departure at the end of his 21st year as superintendent.

Pott. County Primary features 6 candidates for 2 seats


March 31st, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Six people will seek two open seats on the Pottawattamie County Board of Supervisors in this year’s election. Five of the six are Republicans, with one Democrat. The Daily NonPareil says only one person, Melvyn Houser, is running for the county auditor position, while incumbent Jeff Danker will be unchallenged in the election for county sheriff. Houser and Danker are both Republicans.

The six board candidates are Marilyn Jo Drake, incumbent Lynn Grobe, Shala Chevalier, Lynne Branigan and Tim Wichman – all Republicans – and Bartholomew Randolph, a Democrat.

Following the Primary, two of the five Republicans running for the board will move on to the November general election, unless none of the candidates receives at least 35 percent of the vote. If that occurs, the county’s Republican Party will then decide who moves on.

Other races on the June 7 primary will vote those running for U.S. senator, U.S. representative, state senator and state representatives.

Montgomery County Primary election set for June 7th


March 31st, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Montgomery County Auditor Stephanie Burke, Wednesday, released the names of candidates who have submitted certified nomination papers to run for county offices during the June 7th Primary election.  All current Republican incumbent candidates for office are running for re-election, including Auditor Stephanie Burke, Sheriff Joe Sampson, and Donna Robinson – Montgomery County Board of Supervisors, District 5.

The are two Republicans running for the Board of Supervisors District 3 seat in Montgomery County, including incumbent Bryant Amos, and challenger Mike McCunn.


Voters in Montgomery County are reminded that May 27th is the Pre-Election Voter Registration Deadline. There is election day registration, but specific documentation must be provided. Auditor Stephanie Burke says, if possible, register BEFORE election day.


June 3rd is the deadline to request an absentee ballot be mailed to you. Those requesting ballots by mail should do send their requests as soon as possible. And, the Polls in Montgomery County will be open election day, Tuesday, June 7th, from 7-a.m. until 9-p.m. Absentee ballots will be available after April 28th at the Auditor’s Office, to be vottd through Monday, June 6th.


Polling places in Montgomery County include: The Red Oak Gold Fair Building; Red Oak Fire Station; Red Oak 1st Christian Church; Elliott Community Buildng; The Stanton Fire Department; Grant Fire Department, and Villisca Community Building.


The Montgomery County Auditor’s Office is open Monday through Friday, from 8-a.m. until 4:30-p.m.  If you have any questions about voter registration, absentee ballots, or voting, call the Auditor’s Office at 712-623-5127, or visit www.montgomerycountyiowa.com on the web,

Cass County Primary set


March 31st, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The last day of filing for office in Cass County has come and gone, with three new candidates submitting their nomination papers by 5-p.m. Wednesday, for the June 7th Primary Election. The only Democrat to file in any of the contested races, Dana Kunze, from Griswold, filed his papers to be included on the ballot in the Cass County race for the District 4 seat on the Board of Supervisors.

As we mentioned during our newscasts Wednesday afternoon and overnight, two Republicans had also filed papers for the District 4 seat, Wednesday. Rocky Anderson and Ryan Askeland, both of Griswold, bring to six, the number of Republicans vying for the position being vacated by Chuck Rieken, of Griswold. The other candidates, as previously mentioned, include Steve Baier and Barry Moore, of Griswold, Todd Hansen, of Atlantic, and Nick Hensley, of Cumberland.

No other changes have been made to the list of Republican candidates filing for Cass County Supervisor District 1, District 5, Auditor and Sheriff. No Democrats have filed to run for any of those positions. On the ballot for the District 1 seat on the Board of Supervisors in Cass County, is Steve Green (Police Chief in Atlantic), Dave Jones (Mayor of Atlantic), and Dale Retallic. All three men are from Atlantic.

In the Cass County District 5 race for the Board of Supervisors, Republicans, J. Ford Lillard, of Wiota and Bernard Pettinger, of Anita, are challenging incumbent Republican Frank Waters, of Cumberland. Incumbent Cass County Republican Auditor Dale Sunderman will face off against his fellow Republican challenger Wendy Richter to try and retain his seat. And Cass County Republican incumbent Sheriff Darby McLaren, of Atlantic, is unopposed in his bid for re-election.

Branstad signs bill into law on untested rape kits in Iowa


March 30th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Gov. Terry Branstad has signed a bill into law that will require law enforcement in Iowa to respond to a survey aimed at determining the number of untested rape kits around the state. Branstad signed the bill into law Wednesday. It passed with unanimous support in the House and Senate.

The Iowa attorney general’s office released an electronic survey recently to authorities aimed at understanding the storage and potential backlogs of untested sexual abuse evidence collection kits. They’re using a $2 million federal grant to get the scope of the issue and to test as many kits as possible. The new law will require authorities to respond to the survey.

The federal government pledged at least $40 million last year to deal with backlogs of rape kits around the country.


Bridge work on I-29 in Woodbury County set for April 4th


March 30th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Transportation’s Sioux City Construction Office reports bridge removal work at the exit 134/Salix interchange in Woodbury County, will require the closures of south- and northbound lanes of Interstate 29 from 8-a.m. Monday, April 4th, until 5-p.m. Thursday, April 7th, weather permitting.

I-29 traffic will be detoured onto the I-29 off-ramps at exit 134, and then onto the I-29 on-ramps. Motorists are encouraged to follow the signed detour routes.

The bridge removal is part of the exit 134/Salix interchange replacement project. The $16.2 million contract was awarded to Godbersen-Smith Construction Inc. of Ida Grove.

Page County accident Tuesday – No injuries


March 30th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

No injuries were reported following a single-vehicle accident Tuesday afternoon, in Page County. Sheriff’ Lyle Palmer says 20-year old Jennifer Leann Blackburn, of Clarinda, was traveling west on 230th near Juniper Avenue at around 1:30-p.m., when she lost control of her 2003 Pontiac Grand Am. The car slid off the road and into a ditch, where it hit a utility pole belonging to Atchison Holt Electric Company.

Damage from the crash amounted to $5,000. No charges have been filed at this time.

Imogene man charged w/Child Endangerment following an incident in a vehicle


March 30th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County have charged a man with Child Endangerment following an incident that took place in a vehicle late this (Wednesday) morning, near Red Oak. 21-year old Jacob W. Avery, of Imogene, was a passenger in a vehicle who was allegedly involved in an altercation in the vehicle, sometime after 11-a.m.

When deputies investigated the alleged altercation, they were told Avery had left the vehicle, but he was located a short distance away. During the investigation, it was determined that as a passenger in the vehicle, Avery allegedly rapidly applied the brakes, causing the vehicle to skid on the road, and children in the rear seat to be thrown against their restraints.

Avery was taken into custody at around 11:35-a.m. and brought to the Montgomery County Jail without incident. His bond was set at $2,000.

Harlan Police report 3/30/16


March 30th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Police in Harlan report three arrests took place over the past week. On March 25th, 37-year old Daniel Grabill, of Harlan, was arrested for Disorderly Conduct after officers were called to a possible domestic situation in the 1700 block of 20th Street.  On March 26th, 56-year old Galen Ayers, of Harlan, was arrested when officers were called to the 600 block of Spring Street for a domestic disturbance.  Ayers was transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with domestic abuse assault. And, on March 29th, 20-year old Marcus Morgan was arrested when officers were called to the emergency department at Myrtue Medical Center for a female injured in a domestic dispute.  Morgan was taken into custody and transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with domestic abuse assault.

Officials report also, a complaint was filed March 26th with the Shelby County Clerk of Court, charging Terri Davis, of Carter Lake, with violation of a No Contact Order. That same day, 32-year old Elizabeth Woodward was cited for supplying tobacco to a minor, when she sold tobacco products to a person under age. And, 29-year old Jeremy Carrier-Tischer, of Harlan, was cited for Driving Under Suspension, following a traffic stop.

In other activity, Harlan Police cited Kelsie Kleffman, of Harlan, for Failure to Obey a Stop or Yield sign. She was cited following an accident March 23rd at 5th and Victoria Streets, in Harlan. Damage from the collision with a vehicle driven by Curtis Schumacher, of Avoca, amounted to $1,400.