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Sioux City seeks to block traffic camera rules

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Sioux City has filed a lawsuit seeking to block the state Department of Transportation’s new rules limiting traffic enforcement cameras. The Des Moines Register reports Wednesday that Sioux City filed the lawsuit in Woodbury County District Court, saying the regulations make it impossible for the city to use cameras along Interstate 29. The suit asks a judge to stop the rules or at least put them on hold until the litigation is resolved.

The Transportation Department’s rules took effect Feb. 12, though agency director Paul Trombino says cities don’t have to immediately remove cameras. Under the new rules, local agencies must show cameras are targeting “high-crash or high-risk locations,” and they must justify renewal every year. The lawsuit argues the rules are too broad.

Regency Villa Apts. in Atlantic receives $195k tax credit from IFA

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Finance Authority (IFA) Board of Directors today announced affordable housing awards to fifteen affordable rental projects totaling more than $82.4 million in federal Housing Tax Credits and HOME program awards to build and preserve 650 affordable housing units in thirteen Iowa counties. Locally, a 2014 Housing Tax Credit Award amounting to $195,000, went to the Regency Villa Apartments, in Atlantic, for the acquisition and rehabilitation of 20 affordable units for Seniors, ages 62 and up.

Also in the KJAN listening area, Hilldale Estates in Denison, received a Tax Credit Award of $686,011 and a HOME Award of $1-million, for the construction of 42 affordable units for families.

IFA Executive Director Dave Jamison said “The tax credit and HOME program awards announced today will improve affordable housing options for Iowans, including providing more options to fit the needs of seniors and persons with disabilities.” Jamison said also, “These projects have leveraged an additional $8.2 million in local contributions, which shows that communities understand the benefits of these projects.”

Massena man arrested for Sex Offender Registry violation

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A Massena man was arrested Monday for failing to comply with the State of Iowa’s Sex Offender Registry. Cass County Sheriff’s officials say 54-year old Robert John Rasmussen was taken into custody on a Department of Criminal Investigation (DCI) warrant. Rasmussen was brought to the Cass County Jail and released later that day on $2,000 bond.

The Sheriff’s Department reports also, 27-year old Jacky Ray Walters, of Atlantic, turned himself-in to authorities Tuesday. Walters was wanted on a District Court warrant for Probation Violation. He was booked into the jail and released later that day on $7,500 bond.

And on Sunday, 37-year old Jennifer Sue Alexander,of Griswold, was arrested on a charge of Disorderly Conduct. Alexander was taken to the Cass County Jail where she pled guilty before the magistrate and was released later that day.

2 people arrested on drug charges in Cass County

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says two people were recently arrested on drug charges. On Tuesday, 31-year old Dial Larry Amador Bolin, of Lewis, was arrested on Possession of a Controlled Substance, OWI 2nd Offense, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, charges. Bolin was booked into the Cass County Jail and later released on his own recognizance. And on Saturday, March 8th, Cass County deputies arrested 51-year old Ronald Eugene Keller, of Massena, on a charge of Possession of a Controlled Substance. Keller was taken to the Cass County Jail where he was released later that day on $1000 bond.

IA DOT discusses Bluffs Interstate system

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Department of Transportation say reconstruction of the Interstate 29 interchange with U.S. Highway 275/Iowa Highway 92 will be a main project this year in the continuing rebuilding process of the Council Bluffs interstate system. The Daily NonPareil reports DOT engineers expect it will take two-years to reconstruct the interchange.

Engineer Troy Jerman said the new design won’t look much different from the current shape. The entry/exit ramps will be longer and the U-shaped exit off southbound I-29 will have a wider turn for more safety. There will be some night closures on I-29 during this period, while Hwy. 92 will have one lane closures in each direction. Work is expected to start in July.

Also this year, two bridges that are part of the west junction of Interstate 80 and I-29 near the Missouri River will open. One of them is the bridge taking motorists from eastbound I-80 onto I-29 going north. The other is the “local bridge” from I-29 southbound to eastbound I-80. The local bridge takes motorists to the South 24th Street exit or the South Expressway exit.

A major project once that interchange work is completed will be the moving of railroad lines to allow more room for the widening of the major interstate corridor. One relocation will involve the CBCE line that currently runs through the middle of Lewis Central High School. The BSNF line that parallels the Manawa Power Centre will be moved, meaning traffic entering that shopping center from the west won’t be bothered anymore by trains going to nearby industries.

The IDOT has committed $442 million in state and federal funds to this project in the next five years. The information was presented during a public meeting Tuesday, in Council Bluffs.

Pursuit results in NE woman hospitalized & jailed on drug & other charges

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A chase that began in Omaha Tuesday night and ended in Pottawattamie County, resulted in a Nebraska woman being sent to the hospital and then on to jail. Sheriff Jeff Danker says the driver of the vehicle, 22-year old Rebecca White, of  Plattsmouth, Nebraska, was being held in the Pott. County Jail on charges that include Possession of Controlled Substance-Methamphetamine, Eluding, Reckless Driving and having No Valid Driver’s License. She has since been released on her own recognizance.

The incident which led to her arrest in Iowa began at around 11-p.m. Tuesday. Danker says  Pottawattamie County Communications was advised that the Omaha Police Department had been involved in a pursuit of a silver Pontiac bearing a Nebraska license plate. The pursuit was terminated by Omaha Police at the state line. Authorities were cautioned that occupants of the vehicle were possibly in possession of a stolen firearm and known to go armed.

Pottawattamie County deputies located the vehicle at Highway 6 & Interstate 80. One of the deputies began to follow suspect vehicle, and at the 14 mile marker of I-80 confirmed that it was the vehicle that had been involved in the Omaha pursuit.  After following the car for a couple of miles,  the deputy activated his cruiser’s emergency lights in attempt to stop the vehicle.

The car however continued eastbound on I-80.  The pursued vehicle hit stop sticks that were deployed just west of the Underwood exit but the car continued to elude authorities.  Near the 19 mile marker of I-80,  the driver’s side rear tire began to deflate but the vehicle continued to flee and eventually lost both tires on the driver’s side, all the while  maintaining a speed of 70 mph on the rims.

White exited I-80 at the 29  mile marker and continued to drive in an erratic fashion until the rims separated from the vehicle on Tamarack Road, in Pottawattamie County. At this time White pulled the car into a private driveway and fled on foot, wearing a back pack. Deputies gave chase and caught the woman between two buildings on private property. White was taken into custody and transported to Mercy Hospital by Neola Rescue for treatment of possible injuries.

While at the hospital, deputies were informed by the nursing staff that they had found what were believed to be narcotics in White’s bra. A field test of the substance came up positive for methamphetamine. In addition, during the course of their investigation, deputies learned that the vehicle she was driving had been purchased by White about  2 months earlier, had not been registered, and was still registered to another person.

Holt runs for State Representative

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A Crawford County Republican is officially running for State Representative of District 18. Steve Holt, of Denison, submitted his nomination petitions and Affidavit of Candidacy today (Wednesday) to Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz. District 18 includes portions of Crawford, Harrison and all of Shelby County.

Holt lives in Denison with his wife and five children. He is a retired Marine and small business owner. Holt said, “I am truly honored to seek this office and represent the voters of District 18.” Holt’s objectives include reducing the size and intrusion of government, strengthen Second Amendment rights and encourage risk taking and greater economic opportunity through education and tax reform.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

Iowan denies allegation he used cord on grandson

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A 43-year-old Sioux City man has denied accusations that he used an extension cord to beat his grandson.  The Sioux City Journal says Dayle Webbs pleaded not guilty on Monday to child endangerment resulting in injury. His trial is scheduled to begin June 24.

Court documents say that on Jan. 5 Webbs hit his 6-year-old grandson on a shoulder and thigh and on his neck, back and stomach after the boy got out of bed to get a drink of water. The documents say open, bleeding wounds on the boy’s shoulder and thigh were still visible 20 days later.

Easter egg hunt in Atlantic benefits from Frederickson Fund donation

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Annual Easter Egg Hunt in Atlantic should be even more special this year, thanks to a donation from the Trevor Frederickson Memorial Fund.

(Submitted photo)

(Submitted photo)

The Fund’s Melanie Petty recently donated $100 to Atlantic Nursing and Rehab Center Administrator Kellie Jimerson,  for ANRC’s Easter Egg Hunt which will be held Saturday, April 19th.

Home prices up last month in Iowa…sales down

News

March 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Association of Realtors (IAR) said today (Wednesday) home prices rose slightly and sales decreased in February. IAR’s March 2014 Housing Trends Report shows that the average sale price of homes across Iowa was $141,489, up .5 percent from last February. The average sale price in February 2013 was $140,751.

Home sales decreased by 5.1 percent from last year. The realtor’s group reports 1,792 homes sold in February 2014, while 1,889 homes sold in February 2013. Twenty-six of Iowa’s 44 local boards reported increases in average sale price, while 16 boards had increases in the number of sales.

The statewide average number of days on the market last month was 103 days, up 1 day or 1 percent from last February. Twenty-three boards showed a decrease in days on the market. Kathy Miller, IAR 2014 President, says “The extreme cold, snow, and wind that we’ve experienced this winter, has definitely influenced buyers and sellers across the state. Sellers are inclined to wait for warmer weather to list, and buyers are reluctant to move in the inclement weather we’ve experienced.”

Miller expressed optimism by saying, “However, spring is in the air; and we’re sure to see an increase in activity in March. Interest rates remain low, which should bring buyers to the table and help sellers get their properties sold.”