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New study defends Corps of Engineers actions on 2011 Missouri River flooding

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

An independent review of last year’s prolonged Missouri River flooding says there was little more the U-S Army Corps of Engineers could have done to avoid the widespread, expensive damage. Among those on the review team, Cara McCarthy is senior forecast hydrologist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Portland, Oregon. McCarthy says they looked through a mountain of information.She says, “First of all, it’s just finding out about the flooding, looking at the numbers and finding out the extremes and then finding out, not just the water amount, but the damage amounts, talking to people and hearing what happened to them.” McCarthy says members of the Corps of Engineers started to react early in the spring as soon as they saw the massive inflows of snow melt and rain move into the reservoir system.

“By May 1, they recognized that they had a lot of water to get rid of, so they had actually started to get rid of water in the beginning of April,” McCarthy says. “Even if they had released more water in April than they did, they couldn’t have evacuated all that water. It was just a tremendous amount of water that came down.” While she admits it’s difficult to strike a perfect balance, she says the report recommends the Corps find a way to set aside more upstream flood control storage space to avoid a repeat. “That’s really what was needed this year,” McCarthy says. “If you do have that, you have less water in the reservoir so you have less water for recreation and less water for downstream water uses and for irrigation, so this is the problem the whole Missouri River system needs to look at.” Road repairs from the flooding in Iowa alone exceed 50-million dollars. The Corps estimates almost 600-million dollars in damage was done just to levees along the river.

(Matt Kelley/Radio Iowa)

Atlantic teen cited for assault

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Police in Atlantic say a 15-year old female was cited last Friday for allegedly assaulting another juvenile. Jordan Nielsen, of Atlantic, was arrested on a charge of Serious Assault. The teen was later released to her parent, and cited into juvenile court.

The Atlantic Police Department reports also, the arrest Sunday, of 26-year old Tyler Gordan Bills, of Atlantic, on a charge of OWI/1st offense. Bills was brought to the Cass County Jail and held pending a court appearance.

Ice fishers die in Madison County pond accident

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Madison County say two people who had been ice fishing drowned Monday, in a farm pond about four-miles north of Patterson. Dive teams recovered the bodies of 64-year old Linda Lou Jones, of Prole,  and her life-long friend, 80-year old George Washington Pierce, of Des Moines, Monday night.

Sheriff’s Official were notified about a possible drowning at the pond  by Jones’ husband, Larry, at around 6:45-p.m., Monday. The pair were last heard from by telephone,  about 4 1/2 hours earlier. Larry Jones told authorities he arrived home at around 5-pm Monday, and at 5:30 took his 4-wheel ATV to check on the pair at a pond near his home. That’s when he saw Pierce’ pickup, the ice fishing equipment on top of the ice, and a bucket partially submerged in the water. He also saw a hole in the ice that was several feet wide. Madison County Chief Deputy Sheriff Jason Barnes said the hole was about 10-feet from shore. The pond in that area was about 7- to 8-feet deep.

2 from Adair arrested on drug charges

News

January 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Sheriff’s officials report a pair of Adair residents were arrested last week, on drug charges. Officials say 42-year old Kristina Lois Sherman and 45-year old Charles Henry Elings III, were taken into custody Thursday on warrants for Controlled Substance Violations. Sherman and Elings were brought to the Cass County Jail, and then released on their own recognizance. 

And, last Wednesday, Cass County authorities arrested 25-year old Jacob Lee Gronewold,  of Griswold, on two District Court warrants for Probation Violation. Gronewold was taken to the Cass County Jail where he was being held on $20,000 bond.

Pottawattamie County Sheriff warns about telephone fraud

News

January 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Pottawattamie County Sheriff Jeff Danker has issued a warning to residents of the County about a phone scam that is circulating once again. Danker says his office has received “multiple reports” of attempted phone fraud. The complaintants said they had received calls from persons claiming to be a grandchild or close relative, who says they’ve been arrested.

The caller typically tells the victim they need a large amount of money, wired to their location, so they can post bail and be released from custody. Danker encourages anyone who receives a similar call, to report the matter to your local law enforcement agency. If you have reason to believe the call is legitimate, contact a family member or the law enforcement agency, where the “family member” is allegedly being held, prior to sending any money.

You may recall, a few years ago, we told you a Cass County resident received a similar call, from a person claiming to have been a man’s grandson, who was allegedly arrested in Canada. The potential victim questioned the caller, who became defensive. The person who was calling was also unable to answer a “Challenge” question to confirm their identity…it was a question only the man’s real grandson, would have been able to answer. The victim refused to send any money to the caller.

(UPDATE) Pickup stolen from Villisca recovered near Griswold

News

January 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said this (Monday) morning, that a pickup truck stolen from Villisca over the weekend, was recovered at around 5:20-p.m. Sunday, in a farm field about one-quarter of a mile south of Griswold. The vehicle was unoccupied. Officials say anyone with information about the pickup should contact Montgomery County Crimestoppers at 1-800-432-1001.

The white, 2009 Ford Ranger extended cab truck, was taken from in front of a home in the 500 block of East 8th Street in Villisca, sometime between 11:30-p.m Saturday, and Noon on Sunday.

Cass County Supervisors to act on bridge weight limits

News

January 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors, Tuesday, will act on approving a Resolution setting the posted weight limits on county bridges. The move takes place during the Board’s meeting at the courthouse, which begins at 9-a.m.  In other business, the Supervisors will hear a report from Zoning Administrator Rich Hansen, with regard to zoning changes, and, act on appointing a trustee for the Pymosa Township (the person who held the position previously, has moved from the township). The Board will also review and discuss proposed Fiscal Year 2013 budgets.

8AM Newscast 01-30-2012

News, Podcasts

January 30th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

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7AM Newscast 01-30-2012

News, Podcasts

January 30th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

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Teachers in Council Bluffs & Lewis Central ask for 6 to 8 percent salary increase

News

January 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The chief negotiator for the Council Bluffs Education Association says his union has asked the Council Bluffs School Board for a total package increase of 8.02-percent. Robert Hansen says the CBEA’s membership is mindful that the district has financial issues, but he says his goal to make sure teachers in the district “Dont’t lose money out of pocket.” The education association negotiates on behalf of the 623 teachers employed in Council Bluffs schools.

Last year, the Council Bluffs School Board approved a collective bargaining agreement with the Council Bluffs Education Association that included a total package increase of 2.73 percent. This year the district has counter-offered what would be an increase of about 1.68 percent. Janet Reiners, the executive director of human resources and a negotiator for the district, told the Omaha World-Herald that the district’s counter-offer is to “keep the (pay) base the same at $31,929,” but allow teachers to get the automatic increases scheduled for each year they work for the district. The current agreement means teacher pay ranges from $37,676 to $69,797, depending on experience and education level.

Both Hansen and Reiners expect negotiations to go smoothly.Lewis Central’s Education Association, negotiating on behalf the Lewis Central school district’s 200 teachers, has asked for a total package increase of 6.77 percent this year, while the district has countered with no increase in the base and a smaller district contribution to the insurance package. Superintendent Mark Schweer said the two sides aren’t expected to meet again until they know what the health insurance premiums numbers will be.  Schweer said those numbers could rise by as much as 10 percent.