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3 arrests and vehicle vandalism reported in Harlan


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Harlan Police Department reports three arrests were made over the past week. On Monday, 24-year old Shannon Schow of Harlan, was arrested on an active Shelby County bench warrant for failure to appear in court. She was transported to the Shelby County jail.

On Nov. 21st, 51-year old Jeffrey Pape, of Omaha, was arrested following a traffic stop. Pape was taken to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with driving while revoked, possession of a controlled substance and prohibited acts penalties.

And, on Nov. 19th, 33-year old Stephen Nichols, of Harlan, was taken into custody when he allegedly violated a no contact order with Melissa Nichols. Nichols was arrested on November 22nd and transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with two counts of violation of a no contact order.

In other activity, authorities in Harlan say they received several reports on Nov. 22nd, of vehicles being broken into. The incidents occurred along West Park, Court Street and 16th Street. Among the items taken were a Garmin GPS unit and an iPod Shuffle.

Officials remind citizens of Harlan to lock their vehicles and stay alert to persons in the neighborhood. Crimestoppers rewards may be awarded to persons who provide information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the persons responsible for the burglaries.

Flu vaccine still available in Shelby County


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Officials with Shelby County Health Clinics report the Flu vaccine is still available at Myrtue Medical Center’s Public Health office.  And, there will be another Flu Vaccination Clinic on December 4th from 12:00 noon to 3:00 p.m.   You can register for an appointment at www.shelbycountyclinics.com or by calling 755-4422.  All ages are welcome for the clinic.

Shelby County Public Health Director, Jennifer Muff says  “As long as flu viruses are circulating, people can get sick.” She says “Flu activity generally peaks in January or February and lasts into the spring, so it is definitely not too late to get a vaccination.” It takes about two weeks after vaccination for the body’s immune response to provide fully protection.

Shelby Public Health joins the Iowa Department of Public Health and the CDC in recognizing December 8 through 14 as National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW). The CDC established NIVW to highlight the importance of continuing flu vaccination through the holiday season and beyond.  For more information, see http://www.cdc.gov/flu/pdf/nivw/nivw_media_toolkit_2013.pdf .  Flu vaccine is also available at Myrtue Medical Center’s medical clinics.

The CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older as the first and most important step in protecting against the flu. While the flu vaccine is the best defense against getting influenza, it’s also important to take personal actions to help prevent the spread of illness. Remember the 3Cs: Cover your coughs and sneezes; Clean your hands frequently; and Contain germs by staying home when ill.

Temporary road closure in Shelby County


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency reports a portion of Elmwood road will be closed for today (Tuesday) only. The section of Elmwood Road near 1150th Street is closed for a pipe replacement. The EMA says work will be completed by the end of today and the road will reopen Wednesday.

Pay at the pump and buy a lottery ticket?


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Minnesota and Missouri are now allowing lottery sales as people gas up their vehicles and pay at the pump, but Iowa Lottery C-E-O Terry Rich isn’t ready to ask Iowa legislators to allow those kind of transactions at gas pumps here. “It’s a subject that has and needs a lot of safeguards,” Rich says, “and I sure wouldn’t feel positive about doing something until I’m fully convinced that we have all the safeguards in place for amount of money people might be able to spend and/or the whole safeguards in terms of social impact.”

Minnesota began testing Powerball ticket sales at gas pumps last year. Missouri began testing the concept this fall at 15 gas stations as well as 100 A-T-Ms in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas. Rich says the technology to allow those gas-pump ticket sales is rather expensive and that’s one reason he’s not yet sold on the concept for Iowa gas stations.  “We really want to see what the financial impact is,” Rich says. “I don’t like to spend money unless I know that it’s going to be a positive financial return for the State of Iowa.”

This fall Delaware’s lottery began offering on-line casino games like blackjack and roulette. New Jersey is on the verge of doing that, too, but the games won’t be operated by that state’s lottery. The neighboring state of Illinois is selling Powerball and MegaMillions tickets online.  “There are so many safeguards that we want to make sure and ensure are in place,” Rich says. “We think those are in place now, but we’ll continue to test those and look at that, but it’ll really be determined by what the public and, I think, the other gaming entities in Iowa do to see what our next step is.”

Iowa’s casinos have been lobbying legislators to pass a law that allows the casinos to offer on-line poker games, but the effort has stalled in each of the past two years.

(Radio Iowa)

Retail specialist talks about early sales and why they are happening


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Some are criticizing the decision of retailers who have decided to open their doors on Thanksgiving Day instead of waiting for Friday to kick off holiday shopping. Iowa State University retail and small business specialist, Ron Prescott, says one of the reasons stores are making the move is because they think it will get them sales. “The whole things is actually consumer driven. People are interested in shopping earlier,” Prescott says. “Now that may come from the recession, where people are interest in spreading out their paychecks over a longer period of time.”

While consumers want to shop earlier, Prescott says they may not go along if things continue moving up on the calendar.  “I think there is going to be a point where people say ‘enough is enough’ and we’re encroaching on our holiday season a little bit too much,” Prescott says.

But for this year anyway, opening on Thanksgiving isn’t the limit. “Up to this point, it doesn’t seem like that’s the trend, at least in 2013,” Prescott says. While some retailers are trying to get the jump on holiday shopping, Prescott says overall he’s seen something else that he views as good for the economy. “Employment is up for retailers this holiday season — you know everybody is concerned about unemployment. And it’s just not temporary,” Prescott says.

He says many retailers are hiring full-time employees, and that means they have a positive view of the economy and for business beyond the holidays.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass & Adair County Supervisors to meet Wed. morning


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors is set to meet Wednesday, in Atlantic. During their 9-a.m. session, the Board expects to hear a funding request from Elizabeth Tobak, with “I Care About Kids,” with regard to the programs’ parenting classes.

The Board will also act on the abatement of taxes on properties owned by the City of Atlantic, and move to allow or disallow military exemptions and homestead credit applications for taxes collectible during the 2014-2015 Fiscal Year. And, they’re set to approve Sub-recipient agreements for two federally funded projects: Longview Homes 10-unit apartments and the Longview Homes construction project. In addition, Weed Commissioner Larry Randel will present his annual Weed Control report.

In Greenfield, the Adair County Board of Supervisors will meet at 9-a.m. in the Adair County Boardroom at the Courthouse. During their meeting the Board will hear from County Engineer Nick Kauffman, with regard to the awarding of a bridge contract. Kauffman will also discuss the LEP Policy and Approval of a service contract, the snow removal ordinance, and other matters.

And, at around 9:30-a.m., Auditor Mindy Schaefer will discuss a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Debt Resolution, TIF certification, and a Geographic Informations System (GIS) Workshop agreement.

Photo contest generates images to highlight aviation in Iowa


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

As the holiday season approaches, the focus on aviation often turns to people flying home for the holidays and last minute gifts arriving via air cargo. In addition to those activities, there are many uses of aviation throughout the year that support Iowa’s economy and move people and goods to and from the state. The Iowa Department of Transportation’s Office of Aviation has captured some of those activities by holding a statewide aviation photography contest highlighting aviation activity in Iowa.

General Aviation - First Place | Todd Dalsing (Photo from IA Aviation contest )

General Aviation – First Place | Todd Dalsing (Photo from IA Aviation contest )

Winning submissions for the 2013 Iowa Aviation Photography Contest are posted at http://www.iowadot.gov/aviation/photocontest/photogallery.html and the photos can be downloaded directly from the Flickr website at http://www.flickr.com/photos/iowadot/sets/72157637806812583/.

8AM Newscast 11-26-2013

News, Podcasts

November 26th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson


Every school district in Iowa getting state grant to begin planning for teacher improvement projects


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Every public school district in the state of Iowa has applied for and received a state grant to begin planning for teacher improvement projects. The education reform package that became law this summer also sets aside bonus money for talented teachers who’ll be mentors to other educators, but Department of Education director Brad Buck says January 31st is the deadline for applying for that money.  “I think this is one of those concepts in Iowa that makes sense and I think people are ready to engage in the work,” Buck says. “I think we’ll get, actually, more requests for spots than we have spots in the first round.”

There are 346 school districts in Iowa, but the education reform plan is phased in over three years, so only a third of the districts will get the extra money for teachers on contract for the 2014/2015 school year. Another third of schools will get the money the following year and in year three the rest will get it. Buck says some superintendents have told him they want to wait until that second year — to see what lessons can be learned from the teacher improvement plans of other districts.  “They’re not quite yet sure how that would look in a 650-student district, so they’re waiting to see some other 650-student districts do this, talk about their model and then talk about applying that to their local district,” Buck says.

Other administrators tell Buck they want another year to plan to hire substitutes or replacement teachers for the teachers who’ll leave their own classroom to coach other teachers. Under the new education reform law, all public school districts in Iowa would have a new teacher leadership and compensation system in place by the 2016-17 school year. In the current academic year, each Iowa school district will get at least five-thousand dollars to start meetings among teachers, parents and the community to discuss teacher leadership options.

(Radio Iowa)

A reminder: ISP is increasing patrols this week


November 26th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday will have many families traveling various distances to visit relatives. The Iowa State Patrol would like to remind all motorists the long, four day holiday weekend will increase traffic on all Iowa’s roadways. The increase in traffic can translate into more collisions and traffic delays. 

Last year during the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend, nine individuals lost their lives on Iowa roadways. Six of these nine were not wearing their seatbelts. That is why the Iowa State Patrol is reminding all drivers and passengers to buckle up as they travel this holiday weekend. Officials say wearing your seatbelt can increase your chance of survival in a crash by 50 percent.

The Iowa State Patrol encourages all Iowans to remember as they travel this holiday weekend to buckle up, obey the speed limit, avoid distractions, and to get a designated driver if you are impaired.   If all motorists abide by these rules, we can avoid fatal crashes on our roadways this Thanksgiving holiday weekend. 

The Iowa State Patrol hopes you and your family have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday.