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Branstad expected to announce re-election bid


January 15th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Gov. Terry Branstad is expected to announce that he will seek re-election. Branstad is scheduled to hold a “major announcement” tonight (Wednesday), in West Des Moines. The 67-year-old Republican governor will then kick off a statewide tour.

Branstad, who is currently serving his fifth non-consecutive term, enjoys strong approval ratings. He is touting property tax cuts, education investments and a decline in unemployment as key accomplishments. His campaign announced last week that he had just over $4 million in his campaign account at the end of December.

The main Democrat seeking to oppose Branstad is 63-year-old state Sen. Jack Hatch, of Des Moines. Branstad sounded like a candidate during his annual “Condition of the State” speech before lawmakers Tuesday. Throughout the speech, Branstad repeatedly said: “Iowa is working.”

Iowa News Headlines: Wed., Jan. 15th 2014


January 15th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Cedar Rapids police say officers arrested a man who was accused of using a samurai sword to break windows at First Presbyterian Church in downtown. Thirty-four-year-old Jerrald Meek is charged with third degree criminal mischief and carrying weapons.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Two Des Moines teenagers escaped a fire in their home by smashing a window and scrambling to safety. A smoke alarm that sounded early yesterday morning in the home of Butch Grimm awaked Grimm’s 13-year-old son, who rushed to wake up his 15-year-old sister

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — Alcoa says it has completed a $300 million expansion of the Davenport Works plant the produces aluminum sheet products for the automotive industry. Alcoa executives made the announcement yesterday during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, where manufacturers are focusing attention on increased use of aluminum in vehicles.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A state panel has agreed to pay more than $1,400 to fix damage to first lady Christine Branstad’s car. The Iowa State Appeal Board approved the spending of $1,420 yesterday. Branstad’s personal car was damaged last year after a gate fell on it at the governor’s mansion in Des Moines.

Court upholds disciplinary action against former Council Bluffs doctor


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa doctor has lost his appeal of an Iowa Board of Medicine disciplinary action against him. The medical board said Tuesday it found deficiencies in 71-year-old Robert Tobin’s surgical practices in 2005 and imposed certain requirements on him. The board says he failed to meet them and filed disciplinary charges against him in 2007, 2010, and again in 2011. In March 2012 the board suspended his license for six months and fined him $10,000.

Tobin sued saying he had complied with most of the requirements. He lost in district court and appealed. The Iowa Court of Appeals last week concluded the sanctions were reasonable. Tobin, an ophthalmologist in St. Joseph, Mo., previously practiced in Council Bluffs and Des Moines.

High winds roar through Nebraska, Iowa

News, Weather

January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — High winds roared through much of Nebraska and Iowa, with gusts of more than 50 mph at the Omaha airport. The wind was blamed for overturning a truck and trailer on Interstate 80 in Council Bluffs about 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, blocking the westbound lanes near the Missouri River Bridge. The trailer was removed and freeway lanes reopened within about an hour.

Earlier Tuesday, a wind gust of 55 mph was recorded at Eppley Airfield in Omaha. Council Bluffs also recorded a gust of 48 mph, and Des Moines had a 45 mph gust. The National Weather Service says Wednesday should be calm but more windy weather is expected Thursday.

Marne Community Club Hosting Chili Contest and Men’s Pie Contest


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Marne Community Club will host their Annual Chili Contest this Sunday, January 19th . At the same time, the Annual Men’s Pie Baking Contest will be held. Judging for both contests will be “peoples’ choice.” Anyone interested in entering the Chili Contest should bring a gallon crock pot of chili to the Marne Community Center by 6:00 p.m. on the day of the contest. The same goes for entering the Men’s Pie Contest. There are no fees for entering.

Trophies for both chili and pie winners are on display at the Marne Community Center, and the 2014 1st place winners’ names will be added to their respective trophy. Everyone is welcome to join the fun, either as a participant or a judge. Organizers invite you to come to Marne and share a meal. The main course will be, of course, chili. Please bring a potluck salad to share. Pie for dessert! Beverages will be provided.

Iowa Transportation Commission approves Iowa’s Clean Air Attainment Program funding


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Transportation Commission on Tuesday, approved $4-million in total funding for 11 projects from Iowa’s Clean Air Attainment Program. Among them was: the East Broadway Realignment at Kanesville Boulevard (U.S. 6) (Council Bluffs), which received $474,768 in funding, and the Kanesville Boulevard (U.S. 6) Project (Council Bluffs), which will received $388,800 in funding.

The program was created in 1994 for the purpose of reducing transportation-related congestion and air pollution. This funding is available to cities, counties, state agencies, and nonprofit organizations through an annual application-based program.


Harlan arrest and incident reports


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Police in Harlan Tuesday (today) released a cumulative report on arrests and incidents which have occurred over the past few weeks. Among the incidents, on Jan. 5th, 29-year old Tana Reed of Harlan, was arrested for allegedly assaulting Natalie Segebart according to a complaint filed by Segebart. Reed was cited for simple assault and released.

On Jan.7th,  54-year old Michael Garrison, of Harlan, was arrested at the Shelby County courthouse when he ignored several requests from law enforcement to conduct himself in an orderly fashion. Garrison was transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with disorderly conduct. That same day, two Harlan men were arrested when they were observed letting the air out of the tires of a car at 2104 Lincoln Ave.   23-year old Jeremy Bias, and 35-year old Jeffrey Simpson, were both arrested and transported to the Shelby County Jail where they were charged with intoxication in public. Bias was also charged with criminal mischief.

And on Jan. 10th, 37-year old Brad Knauss, of Portsmouth, was arrested following a traffic stop. Knauss was transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated.

Church burglaries reported in Cass County


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating the report of two church burglaries that occurred in rural Griswold. Sometime between January 6th and January 9th, person(s) unknown entered the Noble Center United Methodist Church at 630th and Victoria Roads in Griswold by prying the lock from the back door. Missing items were not initially reported.

Also, between January 7th and January 8th, person(s) unknown entered the St John’s United Church of Christ on Upland Road in Griswold and took a small amount of cash and a Keurig coffee maker and coffee pods. Page County Sheriff’s Office and Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office have also each reported several church break-ins in their counties in and around this time period.

Anyone with any information regarding these break-ins is encouraged to contact the Cass County Sheriff’s Office at 712-243-2206.

Shelby Co. Board approves FY 2015 budget


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Shelby County Board of Supervisors today (Tuesday), approved the fiscal year 2015 budget by a vote of 2 to 1. The Board heard four options from Shelby County Auditor Marsha Carter. The first option was the same tax dollars as the previous year and the tax asking was the same as 2014. The general fund reserve would be set at $1.2 million and will lower the tax rate about 41 cents. The rural funding would have $41,000 which Carter said would be plenty of money and the secondary road would see $500,000 for an ending balance.

The concern from Supervisor Kenkel was on the secondary roads as he saw the fourth option of increasing the rural base to $100,000 for secondary roads with an increase of 1 percent on Ag land and bare Ag land of 3 percent. Kenkel said “Actually that’s the one I like just because we don’t know what is going to happen on the gas tax and we are trying to do a better job on the rock roads. We got rid of buying the sand rock. We have a lot of needs for projects and I would like to see us put something in there.”

The extra $100,000 would come from rural residents in the county. Instead, Supervisor Roger Schmitz made a motion to accept option 1 with a minor change. Schmitz said “I’m going to try this; I make a motion that we put $125,000 in the special fund from the general fund and go with option one. I am talking about from the general fund to the capital projects.”

The motion was passed as Parkhurst second and both Schmitz and Parkhurst approved with Kenkel being a nay vote. The option one budget means there will be no tax increase by the supervisors. A budget public hearing will take place on Tuesday, February 4th at 9am.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

Red Oak man arrested for Probation Violation


January 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest today (Tuesday), of 39-year old Heath Allen McClarnon, from Clarinda. McClarnon was taken into custody at around 9:45-a.m. at a residence on Coolbaugh Street in Red Oak, after a Page County warrant was issued with regard to revocation of his probation.

McClarnon was released to Page County authorities, and was being held at the jail in Clarinda on $5,000 cash bond.