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(Podcast) 7:07-a.m. KJAN News & funeral report, 12/24/2014

News, Podcasts

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Some of the area’s top news, with KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

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ISU to hire 235 new faculty over two year period

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Iowa State University’s president says enrollment at the Ames school has been growing at a “record pace” and that’s why he’s on a hiring spree. Last year, I-S-U president Steven Leath approved hiring 105 new faculty members. “We’re going to do 130 this year,” Leath says. “I think we’re the only university in the country that’s hiring that many faculty in the two-year period.”

According to the American Institutes for Research. Iowa State is the only university in the country to have reduced administrative costs while increasing the number of faculty hired over the past eight years. That trend started with former I-S-U president Gregory Geoffrey and continued with Leath when he took over as I-S-U’s president nearly three years ago.

“This is really about making sure we can teach the students,” Leath says. “And it’s also about doing research in some critical areas and so these are very targeted recruitments.” Nearly 70 percent of all I-S-U classes have fewer than 20 students and to accommodate both record enrollment and more faculty, Leath ordered some administrative offices that had been on the central campus to move off campus.

(Radio Iowa)

Workforce Development program will train low income women in male dominated jobs

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) Foundation has won a 75-thousand dollar grant from the Walmart Foundation to promote career opportunities for low-income women. I-W-D spokesperson, Kerry Koonce, the grant will be used to establish the “Women’s Occupational Matching and Networking (WOMaN) Project” to help women find jobs in non-traditional occupations. “Particularly in the construction and advanced manufacturing area, and so we are going to be working with our customers in our food assistance and our promise jobs programs to really be targeting these individuals and getting them trained and ready to go into these careers,” Koonce says.

Koonce says they picked the two areas of focus based on their potential. “Well they are the two areas where there is demand and growth. They are two areas that women traditionally are much lower in the employment ranks in,” Koonce says. “But they are very high-paying jobs and very self-sustaining. And a lot of these individuals are single parents with young children at home, so strong middle-income wages with good benefits are really important for these families.” She says the program will have a couple of benefits. “You are getting people off of any kind of public assistance, and their life is better, they’re self-sustaining, they are contributing to their own families,” Koonce says.

A recent study compiled by Iowa Workforce Development found the hourly wages of women were 25 percent less than men, and salaried women earn 19-point-four percent less. The study found a primary reason for this disparity in wages was select female-dominated career fields that pay less, along with male-dominated occupations that tend to pay more. Koonce says they are working with partners, such as the Master Builders of Iowa.

“We’ve targeted four areas across the state where we can have the highest impact, and that is: Waterloo, Ottumwa, Davenport and Des Moines,” Koonce says. “And that is based on the ratio of individuals who qualify within this low-income program. And also where there is the need and the opportunity for the growth in these nontraditional occupations.” Koonce says they will get in touch with those already in the two state programs she mentioned. “But we will also be opening it to other people who may qualify, but they are not completely on the assistance program. And we will be kicking it off at the end of January,” Koonce explains.

Koonce says grants like this to the I-W-D foundation allow them to run the program without state dollars. “It’s an area that we’ve begun targeting more heavily within the last couple of years. There’s a lot of programs out there that we can use, and we want to be sure that we are providing all of the resources available to our customers.” Koonce says the non-profit status of the I-W-D Foundation allows them to go after such grants.

(Radio Iowa)

Accident in Audubon County Tue. evening

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

One person escaped serious injury when the vehicle they were driving went out of control and rolled over in Audubon County, Tuesday night. Sheriff Todd Johnson reports 41-year old Tricia Kay Deist, of Audubon, was traveling east on 190th Street at around 6:30-p.m., when her 2003 Dodge went out of control due to the road conditions. The vehicle entered the east ditch near the intersection with Kingbird Avenue, and rolled over before coming to rest on its top. The damage was estimated at $3,500.

Deist refused medical treatment at the scene. There were no citations issued.

Red Oak man arrested Tue. night on Meth charges

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Montgomery County arrested a Red Oak man late Tuesday night, on drug charges. 56-year old Charles James Netherton, of Red Oak, was arrested at around 10:12-p.m. on four felony counts of Delivery of Methamphetamine. The arrest stems from a narcotics investigation.

Netherton was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on $50,000 bond.

Iowa early News Headlines: Wed., Dec. 24, 2014

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa man has been sentenced to nearly six years in prison for selling crack cocaine at a candy store. Thirty-six-year-old Dwayne Howard of Dubuque was sentenced after pleading guilty in October to one count of distribution of crack cocaine near a playground. Howard acknowledged he repeatedly sold crack cocaine to an undercover officer in January and February 2014. The sales were at Howard’s business, Wayne’s Candy, in Dubuque.

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — A Dubuque man was sentenced a second time to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to providing heroin to someone who used the drug and then died. Fifty-one-year-old Alvin Stanley Briggs Jr. first pleaded guilty in June 2013 and was sentenced to 30 years in prison, but that conviction was overturned due to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling dealing with deaths resulting from drugs supplied by another person. In October, Briggs again pleaded guilty and acknowledged a person identified as S.R. would have lived if not for using heroin distributed by Briggs.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An appeals court has overturned a decision ordering the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to pay $4.7 million in legal costs to an Iowa trucking company. The 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals says Judge Linda Reade erred in awarding the fees to Cedar Rapids-based CRST Van Expedited. The ruling sends the case back to Reade to make those findings and determine again whether CRST should receive fees.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa’s population continues to grow slowly but steadily. The Census Bureau has released estimates showing Iowa’s population was just over 3.1 million as of July. It’s up about two percent since 2010, when Iowa lost a U.S. House seat following the last headcount.

Massena & Lenox receive H2o quality improvement loans

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Finance Authority and Iowa Dept. of Natural Resources have announced 22 Iowa cities will benefit from a combined total of more than $27.2-million in low-cost water quality loans, through the State Revolving Fund (SRF). SRF’s are a low-cost financing option available for Iowa cities and municipalities for water quality initiatives. Planning and Design Loans are zero-percent loans that assist with the first-phase of project expenses.

In the KJAN listening area, the City of Massena received a $230,000 Clean Water Construction (CWC) project loan from the SRF, and the Lenox Municipal Utilities received a $452,000 loan for a Drinking Water Construction (DWC) project. Elsewhere, Kiron, in Crawford County, received a CWC loan $1.478-million, and the City of Halbur, in Carroll County, received a $506,000 CWC loan from the State.

Pott. County trail money secured, work begins on engineering phase

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Board of Supervisors in Pottawattamie County learned Tuesday, that about $2.6 million has already been secured to construct a walking and biking trail from eastern Council Bluffs to Underwood and Neola. The Daily NonPareil reports Brian Shea, president of the Pottawattamie County Trails Association, told the board work on engineering the trail is underway.

Shea said the proposed trail would run along the east side of Iowa Highway 191, also known as Railroad Highway, up through Underwood and then to Neola, a stretch of some 17 miles. Down the road, that trail could connect with another one going east to Atlantic and beyond. He said also, atrail from the county jail to Crescent and then on to the Hitchcock Nature Center could also be a future goal, he added.

The Iowa West Foundation awarded a $1.1 million grant to the project. The remaining funds came from a federal recreation grant of $300,000, a state recreation grant of $700,000, a $425,000 grant from the Metropolitan Area Planning Agency, a $38,000 grant from Iowa’s Resource Enhancement and Protection, or REAP, program and $60,000 from the Board of Supervisors.

While providing the Board with an update on the project, Shea also requested an additional $60,000 commitment from the board for the next two years, at least, citing some requirements necessary to secure additional grants. He estimated the 17-mile trail would cost $5.5 million, not including what Underwood and Neola would pay for the trail through their communities. The trail from the county jail to Hitchcock would run about $4 million, not including Crescent’s cost, Shea said.

The board did not take any action on allocating additional money during Tuesday’s meeting.

Pedestrian struck by a van in southern Iowa Tue. night

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A woman walking on a highway in southern Iowa’s Lucas County was struck by a van late Tuesday evening as she walked on Highway 34, on the east edge of Chariton. The Iowa State Patrol says 46-year old Sherri Adams, of Chariton, was in the middle of the eastbound lane when she was hit by a van driven by 50-year old Jamie Bermel, of Lawrence, KS.

Bermel was traveling eastbound in the 2006 Toyota when the collision occurred at around 8:25-p.m. Adams was transported by ambulance to Methodist Hospital. A report on her condition is not available.

The accident remains under investigation.

1 killed, 2 injured in Harrison County head-on crash, Tuesday

News

December 24th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

One person died, two others were injured during a head-on crash Tuesday evening about 2.5-miles west of Logan, in Harrison County. The Iowa State Patrol says all of the victims were from Logan. According to the report, a 2003 Ford Crown Victoria driven by 58-year old Richard Tiffey, Jr., was traveling westbound on Highway 30 just after 6-p.m., when an eastbound 2012 Chevy Impala driven by 74-year old Linda Hack, crossed the center line of the road, for reasons unknown.

Tiffey, Jr., who was not wearing a seat belt, died when the vehicles collided head-on. A passenger in his vehicle, 58-year old Debbie Tiffey, was wearing her seat belt. She was taken by ambulance to CHI Health Hospital in Missouri Valley. Linda Hack, who was also wearing her seat belt, was also transported to the same hospital.

The accident remains under investigation.