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Traffic stop in Red Oak results in an arrest this morning


April 18th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop early this (Saturday) morning, in Red Oak, resulted in an arrest. Red Oak Police say at around 12:30-a.m., a van driven by 35-year old Meri Ellen Kling, of Red Oak, was pulled over in the 1300 block of North Broadway. Following questioning of the driver, the Montgomery County K9 was deployed and alerted to the odor of narcotics coming from the vehicle. Kling was subsequently taken into custody for Possession of drug paraphernalia and OWI/Drugged. She was also cited for having no insurance. Kling was transported to the Montgomery County Jail, where her bond was set at $1,000.

Area schools to benefit from STEM Awards


April 18th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

More than 100,000 Iowa students will benefit from the fourth year of a state program to boost science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs. The Daily NonPareil reports the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council has announced about 2,800 educators from all corners of the state have been accepted to receive STEM programs through its STEM Scale-Up initiative for the 2015-16 academic year.

Council members selected 14 STEM programs to provide curriculum, after-school programming and other enrichment opportunities for students in preschool through high school. Robotics, wind turbines, virtual reality and career skills are all among the topics covered by the programs. Southwest Iowa public schools, preschools, libraries and other community organizations benefited from the Scale Up program awards.

  • A World in Motion” program uses real-world engineering challenges to teach STEM through inquiry for elementary and middle-school students. Those receiving it include The AHST Elementary School, Atlantic schools, Griswold Public Library, Iowa State Extension of Page County, Missouri Valley schools, Red Oak Middle School, Shenandoah Middle School, Sidney Elementary School and West Harrison schools.• Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education provides experiences about agriculture, food and natural resources for high-schoolers. Those receiving it include Boyer Valley schools and Shenandoah schools.
  • Defined STEM stresses fundamentals of STEM through web-based enrichment for a school setting. Those receiving it include Fremont-Mills schools, Missouri Valley schools and Underwood schools.
  • Engineering is Elementary in Iowa integrates engineering and technology with elementary science topics. Those receiving it include Iowa State Extension of Cass County, Nishna Valley YMCA, Shenandoah schools, Tabor Public Library and West Harrison schools.
  • FIRST Tech Challenge goes beyond a robotics competition by stressing how to work together, share ideas and treat others with respect and dignity. Those receiving it include Iowa State Extension of Mills County and South Page schools.
  • HyperStream offers hands-on technology projects, contests and other activities for fifth through 12th grade after-school clubs or curriculum. Those receiving it include AHST schools, Boys & Girls Club of Council Bluffs, Boys & Girls Club of Carter Lake, Carter Lake home-schoolers, Iowa State Extension of Harrison County, Shelby County Catholic Schools, Shenandoah Middle School and South Page schools.
  • KidWind teaches renewable energy topics through lab activities. Those receiving it include Atlantic schools, Clarinda’s Garfield Elementary, Griswold High School, Iowa State Extension of Harrision County, Iowa State Extension of Shelby County, Lewis Central schools, Logan-Magnolia schools, Red Oak Middle School, Shenandoah High School, Sidney Elementary School and West Harrison schools.
  • National STEM League is offered for secondary students to compete like professional innovators in engineering, software and hardware integration, enterprise, marketing and development. Those receiving it include Logan-Magnolia schools, Missouri Valley Middle School, Shenandoah schools and Tri-Center schools.
  • Project Lead The Way has several related programs: the core principals of engineering (POE) curriculum, the computer science and software engineering (CSE) curriculum, a middle-school design and modeling as well as automation and robotics program (Gateway) and a new elementary-school program (Launch). Those receiving those programs include AHST (POE), Council Bluffs schools (CSE and POE), Lewis Central schools (CSE, Launch) and Logan-Magnolia schools (Launch).
  • Pint Size Science from the Science Center of Iowa is geared for children age 3 to 5 to explore science concepts. Those receiving it include AHST Elementary School, Atlantic Head Start, Bloomer Head Start, Clarinda’s Garfield Elementary School, Clarinda Head Start, Council Bluffs Head Start, Essex Head Start, Griswold Head Start, Griswold Public Library, Hamburg Elementary School, Hamburg Head Start, Harlan schools, Harlan Head Start, Iowa State Extension of Fremont County, Iowa State Extension of Page County, Iowa State Extension of Shelby County, Lakin Head Start, Lewis Central schools, Lewis Central Lucky Children, Missouri Valley Elementary School, Missouri Valley Head Start, Red Oak Head Start, Riverside schools, Shenandoah Head Start, Sidney Public Library, South Page schools, Tabor Public Library, Trinity Lutheran Preschool (Council Bluffs), Walnut Community School, West Harrison schools, Woodbine schools and Woodbine Head Start.
  • Spatial-Temporal Math uses a game to boost math comprehension and proficiency through graphically-rich animations and visual representation of concepts. Those receiving it include Hamburg Elementary School, Missouri Valley Elementary School, Shenandoah schools, Sidney Elementary School and South Page schools.

A total of $3.1 million from the Iowa Legislature was spread across six regional STEM areas. Results from 2013-14, according to a press release, show that more than 90 percent of students in STEM Scale-Up programs reported a higher interest in at least one STEM subject or career field.

Sioux City Police: one teen dies, three recovering, after smoking synthetic drug


April 18th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A Sioux City teenager died and three others were hospitalized after police say they became ill while smoking a synthetic drug. Officer Jeremy McClure of the Sioux City Police Department says emergency responders were initially called late Thursday night to War Eagle Park to check on a person who was sick. “Four subjects were transported to local hospitals for treatment after ingesting smokeable synthetic drugs. One those subjects, 18-year-old Austin McCloud of Sioux City, died while being treated,” McClure said at a news conference Friday. McCloud and the three other victims, between the ages of 16 and18, were found together in a car shortly after 11 p.m.

McClure said an autopsy will help determine exactly what caused McCloud’s death. Two of the teens were still be treated at the hospital, as of Friday afternoon, while the other teen was treated and released. The names of the other three victims are not being released, but McClure said they are all students at Sioux City West High School. It remains unclear exactly what substances were being used by the four teens.

“We’re not exactly sure what synthetic drug they were using at this time,” McClure said. “The substances that we found at the scene are being sent to the Iowa State Criminal Lab to be tested.” For now, no charges have been filed in the case.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines: Sat., April 18th 2015


April 18th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa board has approved nearly $16 million in investments in three companies across the state. The Iowa Economic Development Authority announced the grants Friday for projects in Sioux City, West Des Moines and Knoxville. The board also approved an additional $19.8 million in tax refunds for Google Inc.’s Council Bluffs data center, bringing its total tax incentives to more than $36 million.

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say a van stolen from a Cedar Rapids nonprofit has been found in West Des Moines but no arrests have been made. The van was taken from the Boys and Girls Club of Cedar Rapids Polk Unit. Police say someone broke into the building and stole electronics and the club van. Officers are working to identify a suspect.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The discovery of bird flu on an Iowa turkey farm has raised serious concerns that the poultry-killing virus could find its way into chicken barns in the state. Iowa is home to roughly 50 million chickens that lay nearly one in every five eggs consumed in the country. The H5N2 virus has not yet been detected in Iowa chicken barns.

GARNER, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa lawmaker has testified during his sexual abuse trial that he didn’t have sex with his wife in May at a nursing home in Garner. Henry Rayhons is accused of sexually abusing his wife after being told she was no longer mentally capable of consenting to sex due to dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease. She died in August.

$103,866 Granted to Cass County Nonprofit Agencies


April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

21 nonprofit agencies in Cass County have been awarded grants from the Cass County Community Foundation, amounting to $103,866. The checks were presented to representatives of those organizations Friday afternoon by Nicholas Hunt, Chair of the CCCF.

Representatives of various Cass County Organizations proudly display their CCCF grant checks Friday afternoon.

Representatives of various Cass County Organizations proudly display their CCCF grant checks Friday afternoon.

The following nonprofit organizations, which submitted applications to the Cass County Community Foundation by the February 1st deadline, were awarded grants by the Cass County Board of Directors for their respective projects:

  • Anita Foundation: Washer & dryer for facility and new equipment for toddler room $2,000
  • Anita Public Library: Replace front door with automated doors to accommodate handicapped access $4,000
  • Ann W. Wickman Child Development Center: Carpet for Special Needs Preschool classrooms $10,000.00
  • Atlantic Coca-Cola Center & Museum: Display unit for donated items $3,000.00
  • Atlantic Parks & Recreation Department: Fencing around the off-leash dog park at Schildberg Recreation Area $10,000.00
  • Atlantic Public Library: Furnishings to create teen area in library $1,000.00
  • Atlantic Rock Island Society: Climate control equipment to ensure preservation of historic documents $6,000.00
  • Atlantic Youth Sports Organization: Create a playground at the Atlantic Little League Complex $3,000.00
  • Cass County Conservation Board: Funds to finish upgrades of electrical camping hookups at Cold Springs Park $4,500.00
  • Cass County Health System Foundation: Purchase central monitor system for OB department $6,116.00
  • Cass County Historical Museum: Complete building façade by adding signage, awning and seating $5,000.00
  • City of Griswold: Griswold Community Building repairs and equipment $10,000.00
  • City of Lewis: Tornado siren $2,500.00
  • City of Marne: Repair Community Center steps & sidewalk $2,250.00
  • Friends of the Griswold Public Library: Renovations $5,000.00
  • Lewis Public Library: Computers and wireless router $2,500.00
  • Massena Public Library/City of Massena: Awning & outdoor lighting $2,000.00
  • Nishna Valley Trails, Inc: Recreational trail construction to connect two existing trails $25,000.00

All grantees met the criteria as Cass County nonprofit agencies or organizations with charitable missions in the areas of civic, cultural, health, education and social services. Only organizations providing services in Cass County were eligible. Cass County agency representatives received their checks on April 17th.

During brief check distribution activities, Hunt commended the nonprofit agencies for their individual efforts to provide a better quality of life for the residents of Cass County. “Our Advisory Board is pleased to direct $103,866.00 in grants to these important community efforts in Cass County,” Hunt explained. “The Cass County Community Foundation is one of nine counties that are collectively known as the Community Foundations of Southwest Iowa and meets or exceeds the Standards for Community Foundations as established by the Council on Foundations in Washington DC.”

The Cass County Community Foundation works with individuals, families, businesses and organizations to create permanent funds that address the changing, vital community needs and interests. Donating to a permanently endowed fund helps your neighbors today AND you help build a stronger community tomorrow. Not only that, you’ll be eligible to receive a 25% Endow Iowa Tax Credit for each donation, in addition to any Federal tax benefits for which you may qualify.

The Cass County Community Foundation invests and administers these funds and distributes grants to deserving, qualified nonprofit organizations. “This has grown from an annual event to twice a year, with one grant cycle in the spring and another in the fall,” said Hunt. For information about donating or establishing an individual foundation/fund, please contact any of the Board Members, or call Dennis Nissen, Iowa Foundations Director, at 800-794-3458.

Nebraska endures 2nd driest March on record

News, Weather

April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Weather experts say Nebraska and Iowa experienced a near-record dry March this year. The Omaha World-Herald reports regional and national climatologists and meteorologists announced their findings Thursday. They said the state had its second-driest March on record, while Iowa had its third-driest March, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Central Nebraska experienced its driest March in 121 years of record-keeping. Weather experts say dry conditions have contributed to a brisk fire season, a slow start to tornado season and lower headwaters for the Platte and Missouri rivers. However, the National Weather Service expects the two states to get rain this month.

The National Drought Mitigation Center, housed at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, reports that nearly 38 percent of the continental United States is in drought.

Iowa board OKs funding for jobs, projects to 3 companies


April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa board has approved nearly $16 million in investments in three companies across the state. The Iowa Economic Development Authority announced the grants Friday for projects in Sioux City, West Des Moines and Knoxville. The board also approved an additional $19.8 million in tax refunds for Google Inc.’s Council Bluffs data center, bringing its total tax incentives to more than $36 million.

Curly’s Foods, a Sioux City processed meats producer, has been awarded tax breaks for an expansion project expected to create 30 jobs. Software developer FunnelWise is slated to receive $150,000 in direct financial assistance for a move to Des Moines, creating 14 jobs and retaining six others.

Knoxville’s Weiler gets $600,000 and tax benefits to expand manufacturing at its heavy road equipment plant for 106 new jobs.

No. 1 egg-producing state aims to keep bird flu out

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The discovery of bird flu on an Iowa turkey farm has raised serious concerns that the poultry-killing virus could find its way into chicken barns in the nation’s top egg-producing state and decimate flocks. Iowa is home to roughly 50 million chickens that lay nearly one in every five eggs consumed in the U.S.

The highly contagious H5N2 virus has not been detected in any Iowa chicken barns, but it was confirmed Tuesday on a northwest Iowa turkey farm. Iowa Poultry Association executive Randy Olson says farmers are on heightened alert, focusing on biosecurity measures to keep the virus away from chickens.

Procedures previously implemented to guard against salmonella help keep bird flu out, such as bird-proofed chicken houses to keep wild birds out and strict clothing-sanitation protocols.

Pott. County 911 Operator receives Life Saving Award


April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A 9-1-1 dispatcher with Pottawattamie County Communications received a Life Saving Award, Thursday, for her role in saving the life of a man suffering from cardiac issues.

Pott Co. Communications Operator Elizabeth Cleveland (Center) (Photo from the Pott. Co. Sheriff's Office Facebook page)

Pott Co. Communications Operator Elizabeth Cleveland (Center) (Photo from the Pott. Co. Sheriff’s Office Facebook page)

Operator Elizabeth Cleveland answered a 911 line during the early morning hours of October 16th. A frantic female caller said her dad was having trouble breathing. While rescue was being dispatched, Cleveland spent 9 minutes on the phone keeping the caller calm and giving her instructions for CPR, until help could arrive.

Cleveland also repeated instructions when the caller’s mother took over compressions, giving positive reinforcement and counting with her. She remained on the line giving instructions until she could hear a Deputy on scene using an Automated External Defibrillator. Lewis Township Rescue transported the patient to Jennie Edmundson Hospital at around 12:30-a.m. A diagnosis revealed the patient had suffered from a neurological event which lead to cardiopulmonary arrest. He was discharged from the hospital a few days later.

The award was presented in conjunction with National Telecommunications Week.

House Fire in Harlan Thu. night


April 17th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Firefighters in Harlan responded to the scene of a structure fire late Thursday night. The blaze at 1622 Willow Street was reported shortly after 11-pm.  Occupants of the house said that a woman was laying on the couch when she saw an orange glow in the vicinity of the kitchen.

When she got up to investigate, she saw that the glow was coming from the garage area and opened the door. Flames then erupted into the rest of the home. The couple and their baby escaped the home with only the female’s hand being burned from the hot door.

The Harlan Fire Department was on the scene for about 2 ½ hours. The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The occupants of the home mentioned that they did not have smoke detectors in the residence. Harlan Fire Chief, Roger Bissen, reminds anyone that does not have a smoke detector in their home to call the Harlan Fire Department. The department has detectors available free of charge.