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Supreme Court upholds ruling in Storm Lake Tyson case

News

March 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The U-S Supreme Court has ruled in favor of workers at a pork plant in Iowa on a pay issue. The Supreme Court upheld a five-point-eight million dollar judgment against Tyson Foods after workers at the Storm Lake plant sued, saying they should be paid for the time spent putting on and taking off protective clothing needed for their jobs.

Tyson argued workers should not be allowed to go in together in the lawsuit, and focused in part on whether the employees could use averages in figuring out the time they should be paid for putting on the work gear. The Supreme Court ruled against the company 6-2, with Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito the no votes.

(Radio Iowa)

Man dies in northern IA fishing accident

News

March 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Dept. of Natural Resources said late Tuesday night that a fisherman died Tuesday evening after falling from his boat on the Cedar River, in Charles City. The victim, whose name was being withheld pending notification of relatives, had his small boat anchored just above a low-head dam on the Cedar River located in northern Iowa, when he apparently fell out and went over the dam shortly after 7-p.m.

The man was pulled from the river downstream of the dam by the Charles City Fire and Rescue and was taken to Floyd County Medical Center in Charles City where he was pronounced dead. Also assisting at the scene were the Charles City Police Department and Floyd County Sheriff’s Department.

The incident remains under investigation by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

Sheriff: Employee killed after Madison County quarry blast

News

March 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

EARLHAM, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say an employee was killed after a blast at a Madison County quarry. Madison County Sheriff Jason Barnes said in a news release that it appeared that debris struck 42-year-old Tracy Hockmeier, of Winterset, “following a routine blast” at the Martin Marietta Earlham Quarry Tuesday night.

Barnes said a 911 call was placed around 6:40 p.m., and Hockmeier was pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation into the incident is ongoing.

Pickup pulling horse trailer engulfed in flames at I-680 rest stop

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

No injuries were reported following a vehicle fire Tuesday evening in northwestern Pottawattamie County. A pickup was fully engulfed in flames when authorities arrived on the scene at the Interstate 680 rest stop west of Beebeetown. A horse trailer was detached from the pickup before the flames began to spread.

No other details are currently available.JE1JE2

(Photo’s courtesy Jamie Elliott, of Marne)

 

Rollover accident with critical injuries in Taylor County

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Three people suffered critical injuries in a single-vehicle rollover accident Tuesday afternoon in Taylor County. The Sheriff’s Office says the accident happened at around 4:12-p.m. on 130th Street near Yellowstone Avenue, south of Lenox.

The vehicle was traveling west on 130th Street when it went out of control on the gravel, and rolled. Three occupants of the vehicle were ejected, one was trapped. Three accident victims were transported to area hospitals by helicopter, one was transported by ambulance.

Their names were being withheld until completion of the accident investigation and notification of family. The sheriff’s office was assisted by the Lenox and Bedford Ambulances and the Lenox and Clearfield Fire Departments.

Image from the Taylor County Sheriff's Office Facebook page.

Image from the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.

Cass County Audit report released Tuesday

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Auditor Dale Sunderman says Gronewold, Bell, Kyhnn & Co. P.C. CPA’s have released an audit report on Cass County. The report shows the County had local tax revenue of $27,373,415 (just over $27.37-million) for the year ended June 30, 2015, which included $1,883,681 (in excess of $1.88-million) in tax credits from the state.

The County forwarded $19,742,372 (over $19.7-million) of the local tax revenue to the townships, school districts, cities and other taxing bodies in the County. The County retained $7,631,043 (a little more than $7.6-million) of the local tax revenue to finance County operations, a 10-percent increase from the prior year.

Other revenues included $5,998,610 (nearly $5.6-million) from the state, including indirect federal funding of $2,211,102, ($2.2-million) charges for service of $342,440, and $206,426 for the use of money and property. Expenditures for County operations totaled $14,886,048 (almost $14.89-million), a 2.9 percent increase from the prior year. Expenses included $4,287,370 (nearly $4.3-million) for roads and transportation, $1,692,259 ($1.69-million) for mental health, $2,411,136 ($2.41-million) for public safety and legal services, $1,166,542 (nearly $1.17-million) for capital projects, and $1,291,705 (slightly more than $1.29-million) for administrative services.

A copy of the audit report is available for review in the office of the Auditor of State and the County Auditor’s office.

71-year-old Iowa inmate serving time for attempted murder in Page Co.,dies of natural causes

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

ANAMOSA, Iowa (AP) — A 71-year-old inmate serving time at a maximum-security prison in Iowa has died of natural causes. The Iowa Department of Corrections says Carroll Duane Calhoun died Monday while in hospice care. Calhoun died of natural causes due to the final stages of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Hospice workers found that Calhoun had stopped breathing and officials with the Jones County Coroner’s Office later pronounced him dead.

Calhoun was assigned to the Anamosa State Penitentiary near Cedar Rapids. He has been serving a 25-year prison sentence for attempted murder out of Page County since April, 2004.

 

Escaped C. Bluffs work release prisoner captured, Tuesday

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Department of Corrections report an inmate who escaped from a Council Bluffs Work Release Facility over the weekend, was taken into custody today (Tuesday). 58-year-old Michael Rae was arrested in Carter Lake. He’d been reported missing on Saturday. Rae was brought to the Pottawattamie County Jail and held.

Rae was serving a 10-year sentence for second degree robbery when he absconded from work release.

Iowa lawmakers reach deal over K-12 education funding

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa lawmakers have reached a compromise over how much the state should spend on additional funding for K-12 education for the upcoming fiscal year. Lawmakers from the Democratic-majority Senate and Republican-controlled House voted in a special committee Tuesday for legislation that would increase spending for K-12 schools by 2.25 percent for the next academic year.

Leaders from both sides say the deal was the best option given limited funding for the upcoming budget. Some Democratic lawmakers and education groups say the proposed funding will not be enough to prevent financial hardship for school districts.

The legislation will require formal approval in both chambers before Gov. Terry Branstad can review it. Lawmakers in the split Legislature disagree often over how much money is available for K-12 education.

 

Cass County man sentenced to prison for probation violation

News

March 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A man from Cass County was sentenced Monday to prison, for violating the terms of his probation associated with a guilty plea on a drug charge. 37-year old Joshua James Mullen, of Atlantic, will serve a term of imprisonment not to exceed 30-years, at the Iowa Medical Classification Center in Oakdale.

Mullen was originally sentenced to 30-years in prison in July, 2014, after he plead guilty to Manufacturing a Controlled Substance/2nd or Subsequent Offense. He was subsequently placed on a formal probation for two-years, but that was later revoked after he repeatedly violated the terms of his probation. Mullen appealed, but lost. His original sentence was then reinstated.