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Iowa poverty rate for 2013: 12.7 percent

News

September 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

New data from the U.S. Census Bureau indicates more Iowans are living in poverty now than at the beginning of the recession.  Nearly 380-thousand Iowans were living below the poverty line last year. That’s 12-point-seven percent of the state’s population or nearly one out of every eight Iowans. The poverty rate for 2013 was the same as it was the previous year, but higher than it was in 2007. Six years ago an estimated 11 percent of Iowans were living at or below poverty level.

The poverty line is considered 12-thousand dollars in annual income for an individual. For a family of four, it’s a little less than 24-thousand dollars a year. Iowa’s poverty rate is still below the nation rate of nearly 16 percent. The Census Bureau estimates the median income in Iowa was just over 52-thousand dollars in 2013. It was over a thousand dollars more at the start of the recession in 2007.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa not seeing major issues with enterovirus

News

September 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A state health official says Iowa has not seen any changes involving the outbreak of a virus that has hit over one dozen state. Deputy State Epidemiologist, Ann Garvey, says the enterovirus is common this time of year, but this particular strain known as D-68 has caused concern in other states. “Here in Iowa we know that this strain is circulating — we are hearing about respiratory illnesses across the state — but we are not hearing that any of our health care community is overwhelmed with cases, unable to meet patient need,” Garvey explains. “While it’s circulating we’re not seeing the numbers that some of our neighboring states are seeing.”

Enterovirus is not a disease that the state or federal health officials track, so Garvey says they don’t have a concrete set up numbers on the cases. “We’re still getting calls from health care providers, just anectdotally we’re hearing some of the health care providers are seein the cases slow. But that’s just few of the locations that we’ve spoke to,” Garvey says. Garvey says the impact of virsuses is always hard to determine, and this one is no different.

“As far as why we are having less activity, there’s not a way to predict that or tell you why. We’re just not seeing it,” Garvey says. There is no treatment for entero other than rest. “So we’re just trying to recommend that Iowans take those kind of common sense measures that we use with all respiratory viruses like influenza,” Garvey says. “Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, get plenty of rest, and if we are ill, stay home.” Garvey says most people who come down with the virus will not have serious symptoms.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines: Fri., Sept. 19th 2014

News

September 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

HAMPTON, Iowa (AP) — Shots echoed through the halls of a Hampton elementary school this week as authorities trained staff about how to respond to a school shooter. Two rounds of gunshot blanks, one from a rifle and another from a handgun, were fired in Hampton-Dumont’s South Side Elementary School on Wednesday as a part of ALICE training, the Mason City Globe Gazette reports.

ROCKWELL CITY, Iowa (AP) — The discovery of hundreds of capsules containing an unknown substance at a northern Iowa prison has prompted a state drug investigation, officials said yesterday. Authorities said that 300 to 400 capsules were found last week during routine searches by staff at the North Central Correctional Facility in Rockwell City.

GRAF, Iowa (AP) — An unknown amount of manure from a dairy operation in northeast Iowa spilled into the Little Maquoketa River over several days, officials said yesterday. The state Department of Natural Resources said the spill has been linked to a report of dead fish in the river, though an exact amount has not been released. Officials said they will attempt to count the dead fish today.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa City officials are considering approving a co-housing development in which privately owned homes would be built around a shared facility for activities including cooking, child care and gardening. Development group Prairie Hill is seeking to build what could be the state’s first co-housing community near the former Roosevelt Elementary school, the Iowa City Press-Citizen reports.

Economy remains slow in rural parts of 10 states

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A new survey suggests economic growth in rural areas of 10 states in the Plains and the West will continue slowing down in the next few months. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss said Thursday that crop prices are significantly lower than last year, and that’s a drag on the economy in rural areas.

The overall economic index from the monthly survey of bankers declined to 48.2 in September from August’s already weak 48.3 reading. The survey indexes range from 0 to 100. Any score below 50 suggests decline in the months ahead.

The bankers continue to doubt the economy. The confidence index fell to 33.4 in September from August’s 39.9.

College Fair Comes to Atlantic

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Atlantic High School Guidance Counselor Craig Fredin reports the Iowa Association for College Admissions Counseling will sponsor a College Fair on Tuesday, September 23th, at Atlantic High School from 2:00-3:15 PM. Fredin, who serves as the site coordinator for the event, announced that 60 representatives from post-secondary institutions will be present to speak about opportunities at their colleges, vocational and technical schools, and military services.

The Iowa Association for College Admission Counseling has established 30 College Day/College Night programs throughout the state to provide a supportive environment for students to obtain information and appropriate counseling helpful in their college selection process.

Students, parents, or interested adults from Atlantic and surrounding communities are invited to attend.

Harlan Police report

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Harlan Police Department Thursday (Today) released a report on arrests and incidents. Officials said on Tuesday, 59-year old Jeffrey Stehr, of Harlan, was arrested after officers investigated a report of someone taking two steaks from the Fareway Store without paying for them. Steher was charged with Theft in the 5th degree.

On Sunday, 27-year old Joey Ranney, Jr., of Harlan, was cited for several offenses after officers investigated an accident at the corner of Highway 59 and Cyclone Avenue, where a 2011 Jeep driven by Ranney allegedly struck the back of a 2014 GMC driven by Stephanie Frank, of Alta. Ranney left the scene of the accident, but his vehicle was later located at the J-J Jensen Sports Complex. Ranney was cited for Operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license, failure to stop in an assured clear distance, failure to maintain control, and leave the scene of an accident. Damage from the crash amounted to $7,000.

On Sept. 9th, Harlan Police charged 26-year old Matthew Peters, of Avoca, with five counts of Theft in the 5th degree, after he allegedly took money from the deliveries he was making for Pizza Hut. A complaint was filed with the Shelby County Clerk of Court, and Peters was given a date to appear in court. The previous day (Sept. 8th), 37-year old Ryan Schwery, of Earling was charged with Theft in the 5th degree and aiding and abetting, while at the Shelby County Jail. The charges stem from an incident whereby he allegedly calling 27-year old Lachelle Petersen, of Elk Horn, and asking her to call the Harlan Pizza Ranch and order several pizzas that would not be picked up. The allegedly ordered about $105 worth of pizzas. Petersen was subsequently charged with Theft by deception and Theft in the 5th degree.

On Sept. 6th, 34-year old Nicholas Gaer, and 28-year old Marcus Erwin, both of Harlan, were arrested on charges of Disorderly Conduct, following a disturbance in the 600 block of Market Street, in Harlan. And on Sept. 5th, 31-year old Michael Gifford, of Harlan, was cited for Harassment in the 1st degree, following a complaint by a Council Bluffs man.

The H-PD said they are also investigating an incident of criminal mischief on Sept. 7th, durign which the Harlan water tower at Highway 59 and Cyclone Avenue, was defaced with gold spray paint.

Hatch says Branstad ‘center’ not original

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Jack Hatch, the Democratic candidate for governor, says Republican Governor Terry Branstad’s latest policy proposal is nothing more than following through on a new federal law. This is Branstad’s pitch on the plan, from a speech the governor made Tuesday: “This is the third item that we have brought up as a new proposal in this campaign and we’re calling it a ‘Center for Human Capital Enrichment,'” Branstad said. “This will be a public-private partnership…This would bring together all stakeholders to identify demand, skills gaps and training needs.”

Hatch says it’s not a new proposal. It’s part of a federal law that the state will be required to implement next year. “There’s no creativity there. You could be Jack Hatch, Terry Branstad or anybody else. That is what the law required,” Hatch says. “…Does he have any ideas of his own?” Branstad insists it’s unique. “This is an Iowa approach that focuses on the success we’ve had, but is designed to make sure that it’s coordinated,” Branstad says, “and that (the state Departments of) Education, Economic Development and Workforce Development are working together.” Hatch says Branstad is merely copying the requirements of the “Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014” that President Obama signed in July.

“What he did was what any governor would have to do,” Hatch says. “He just accelerated it and embraced it as his own initiative.” Hatch says it’s ironic Branstad is embracing a proposal signed into law by President Obama since Branstad has identified the federal government as the biggest obstacle to Iowa’s economy. The new federal law, which Iowa Senator Tom Harkin helped craft, requires state workforce development agencies to coordinate with economic development and education initiatives to help businesses find the skilled workers they need. The bill passed congress with bipartisan support.

(Radio Iowa)

New poll shows Branstad 23 points ahead, Hatch points to ’48 Truman comeback

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A new Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-PEE-ack) University Poll finds Republican Governor Terry Branstad leading Democratic challenger Jack Hatch by 23 points. Branstad’s campaign issued a written statement saying this shows Iowans “resoundingly” want Branstad reelected to a sixth term. Hatch told a crowd in Des Moines early this morning that 66 years ago to the day Harry Truman — who was trailing badly in the polls — brought his “whistle stop” tour to Iowa.

“And if you know anything about the history, it’s Dexter, Iowa, and (Truman’s) presentation to over 100,000 Iowa (and) Midwestern farmers that caught the attention of the media and the public and Harry S. Truman was on his way to capture the heart and soul of Iowa and America,” Hatch said, “and, on the day of the election — of course, was elected president of the United States.” Hatch says Truman was able to “ignite” the countryside with his “plain talk.”

“No one thought he could win,” Hatch said. “The polls said he was a dead duck, but he campaigned throughout the heartland and talked to business people, Iowans, citizens and gave a presentation and a vision of what he wanted this country to be. We will do the same thing.” Branstad scoffs.

“He’s no Harry Truman, but the truth of the matter is the people of Iowa can judge my record and my vision of the future and his record,” Branstad says. “I’ve been to every county. There’s a lot of Iowa he’s never even seen.” Truman won 28 states in 1948, including Iowa, and secured 303 votes in the Electoral College. On this day in 1948, Truman went to the National Plowing Match that was being held in Dexter, where he delivered a campaign speech, railing against what he called a “do-nothing” Republican congress that had “stuck a pitchfork in the farmer’s back.”

The Quinnipiac Univerity Poll released today (Thursday) found Governor Branstad had the support of 60 percent of those surveyed, compared to the 37 percent who said they’ll vote for Hatch. Pollsters found 44 percent of the likely voters surveyed don’t know enough about Hatch to form an opinion about him. The poll’s assistant director says with seven weeks until Election Day, Hatch has a “long, long ways to go” and it would be “one of the largest turnarounds in American political history” if Hatch were to win.

(Radio Iowa)

Audubon County pursuit ends in the arrest of a Harlan man

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A pursuit in Audubon County Tuesday afternoon resulted in the arrest of a Shelby County man. Audubon County Sheriff Todd Johnson reports authorities tried to stop a vehicle driven by 18-year old Lucas Alan Schwery, of Harlan, at around 4-p.m. Tuesday, near Eagle Avenue and Littlefield Drive.

Schwery allegedly tried to elude the officer by going in excess of 90-miles per hour. The pursuit finally ended in Elk Horn with Schwery being taken into custody and charged with Eluding. He appeared before the magistrate and was released, with a preliminary hearing set for Oct. 6th.

The Audubon County Sheriff’s Office reports also, 18-year old Jeremy Robert Albert, of Kimballton, was arrested Monday afternoon on an Audubon County warrant charging him with Public Intoxication, Providing False Information to Law Enforcement, and Interference with Official Acts. The charges stem from an investigation into an incident that took place Aug. 10th on Main Street in Kimballton. Albert was brought to the Audubon County Jail and posted bond prior to being released. He’s set to appear in court next Monday morning.

And, as we mentioned in an earlier report, on Wednesday (Sept. 17th), 18-year old Matthew Henry Paulsen, of Adair, was arrested by the Cass County Sheriff’s Office on an outstanding Audubon County warrant stemming from an investigation into a theft that took place Sept. 4th at a residence in Exira. Paulsen was charged with Theft in the 5th degree and Forgery. He was brought to the Audubon County Jail and later released. A preliminary hearing in his case is set for Oct. 6th.

Villisca man arrested on warrant

News

September 18th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Montgomery County said Thursday (today), deputies arrested a Villisca man just before 9-a.m.  52-year old Jon Willbert Oltmans, of Villisca, was taken into custody in Villisca, on a Page County warrant for Contempt of Court/Illegal resistance to a court order.

Oltmans was brought to the Montgomery/Page County line and turned over to Page County deputies. He was being held at the jail in Clarinda on $300 cash bond.