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Burn Ban placed into effect in Pottawattamie County

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

With abnormally warm temperatures and several months of below normal precipitation the rural areas of Pottawattamie County are extremely dry. In the past few weeks several rural fire departments in Pottawattamie County have responded to grass and wildland fires. This week Emergency Management polled the rural fire departments of Pottawattamie County after several Departments inquired as to a burn ban in the County. All rural Departments agreed to the ban and the ban was approved today (Tuesday), by the State Fire Marshall in Des Moines.

Effective 8-a.m. Wednesday, February 1st, all open burning will be banned within the rural areas of Pottawattamie County until further notice, under Chapter 100 of the Iowa Code. An application to your local fire chief can be obtained to allow a permit for an open burn if your local Fire Official believes it is safe to do so. After approval of the permit, several County entities are informed to lessen the danger of false alarms. This is a dangerous situation and officials say they are relying on the public to assist them in enforcing the ban. The conditions are currently favorable for a fast moving wildland fire that can destroy property and be life threatening if uncontrolled. If the area  begins to receive adequate moisture, a revocation of the ban will be considered by the rural Fire Chiefs. A violation of the burn ban is a simple misdemeanor offense.

Monona County man killed in Crawford County crash

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A man from Ute, in Monona County died this (Tuesday) morning in Crawford County, when the car he was driving rear-ended a semi. The Iowa State Patrol says 29-year old Benjamin Randall Monk was not wearing a seatbelt, when his 1989 Mazda 929 ran into the back of a 2001 Peterbilt semi, as both vehicles were on Highway 141, about two-miles west of Charter Oak. The accident happened at around 7:45-a.m.

Officials say the car and the semi were headed east on 141, when the semi, driven by 37-year old Justin Charles Hansen, of Ute, stopped to wait for cross traffic before making a left hand turn into a farm drive. Monk was pronounced dead at the Crawford County Memorial Hospital. Hansen was not injured in the crash.

Record High Temperature Tied in Atlantic

News, Weather

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

As of 12:55-p.m. today (Tuesday), Atlantic was 58-degrees. That ties a record high temperature for this date set 12o-years ago (1892)! There’s still a chance we could break the record this afternoon.

Medical condition causes crash in Adair County

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A Union County woman suffered what were described as “incapacitating” injuries during an accident Monday afternoon, southwest of Macksburg, in Adair County. According to the Iowa State Patrol, 34-year old Hidie Lemon, of Creston, was traveling north on York Avenue near 320th Avenue at around 3:30-p.m., when she lost consciousness due to a medical condition.

The Patrol says Lemon’s 1998 Chevy CRS entered the east ditch. Lemon was transported by ambulance to the Greater Regional Medical Center in Creston. Her car sustained about $1,500 damage during the accident. No citations were issued.

Cass County Zoning Board to hold public hearing on rezoning

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Zoning Administrator Rich Hansen told the Board of Supervisors during their meeting this (Tuesday) morning, that the Zoning Commission will hold a public hearing on February 9th with regard to a request by John Dvorak to rezone a part of his property on the outskirts of Atlantic, from General Ag to Light Industrial. The property is located off Olive Street, across from the Little League Diamonds. Dvorak wants to rezone the 4.5-acre area so he can have a tire repair and car service business. The Zoning Commission will try to iron out some parking issues, and submit its recommendation to the Board of Supervisors for their approval, following the public hearing. The hearing will likely take place at around 7 or 7:30-p.m. on February 9th. The exact time, though, has not yet been set.

Western Iowa school board fires principal

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

MONDAMIN, Iowa (AP) – A western Iowa school board has fired a principal accused of pulling down the pants of a 15-year-old student. The West Harrison Community School District Board in Mondamin voted unanimously Monday to terminate the contract of Mike Loftin at the end of the school year and immediately ban him from school grounds.  The board members would not say specifically why Loftin was fired. The board directed its attorney to file a complaint about Loftin with state education authorities. 
 
The Harrison County sheriff’s office is investigating, but Loftin has not been charged with a crime. A phone listing for Loftin could not be found.  The girl says Loftin, who coached the girls’ basketball team, pulled down her pants before a game on Jan. 20th. Several other students were nearby.

Hwy 92 Bridge scheduled for replacement west of Massena

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Engineer Charles Marker said today (Tuesday), a public hearing will be held February 12th, regarding the closure and replacement of the Highway 92 bridge, located just west of Massena. Marker told the Board of Supervisors he’d received an e-mail from the Iowa Department of Transportation, informing him the bridge is in their replacement program for this Summer. Marker says while the bid-letting date for the project has not been set, the public hearing is being held as part of the process required before work can begin. The detour route will take motorists up Cass County Road N-28 to G-43, across G-43 to Highway 148, and back down to Highway 92. 

Marker says the bridge is being replaced because of the damage it sustained during a flood a couple of years ago. Since then, the bridge has been limited to one-lane traffic for trucks and other such heavy vehicles, because of their weight, meaning only one truck can cross at a time. The public hearing will take place at the Massena City Hall, just prior to the beginning of the regular council session.

Speaking of weight limits, Marker said every year, the County approves weight limits on the bridges, following inspections and subsequent recommendations. He says the bridges have weight limits from as low as 3-tons, to as much as 23-tons. Signs must be erected annually, to indicate the current weight restrictions. The Board approved a resolution allowing limits to be set, according to the inspection reports.

Graffiti vandals caught in Atlantic

News

January 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Atlantic Police Chief Steve Green reports three juveniles have been arrested in connection with a string of vandalisms which occurred over the past several weeks. 14-year old Patrick Ralston, 13-year old Isaiah Lagassie, and 13-year old Austin Boggs, all from Atlantic, were charged with Trespassing, Criminal Mischief in the 2nd degree, and Criminal Gang Participation. Two of the juveniles were transported to the Juvenile Detention Facility in Council Bluffs, while the third has been placed with his parents, pending a hearing. The arrests occurred on Sunday and Monday.

Green says his officers began receiving complaints a few weeks ago, about buildings in both the downtown Atlantic area, and residential areas, being spray painted. In all more than two-dozen buildings sustained damage, but Green doesn’t know the dollar amount of damage just yet, or for that matter, how much restitution the juveniles will be required to make to correct the damage. He says that’s because it’s been difficult to get estimated from the persons and businesses affected. There are costs involved with sandblasting, and in some cases people don’t go through the trouble to take that course of action. 

Over the course of the last week, some specific lettering was discovered, which related to the teens attempting to identify themselves as a gang. The Chief says while the gang situation is being handled seriously, officers would like the public to know that both the age of the offenders and the quick response from law enforcement has prevented a “true gang” from evolving. He says the teens didn’t care if law enforcement knew who they were or not. He says they had a “heads-up” that the police were coming after them, but they continued to act irresponsibly. Green says their mindset was “We’re going to be rebels until the end,” which is an “uncool place to go when you’re 14-years old, because by the time you’re 18, you’re going to be a prime candidate for the (State) Pen.” 

The Chief says officers from virtually every shift formed a team effort to stop the threat from maturing, and to solve the vandalisms that were taking place. He says he’s happy with the efforts of his officers to “Nip the situation in the bud,” and preventing the formation of any ongoing threats. And, while some people might think charges the teens with Criminal Gang Participation is a bit harsh, Green says “We have our reasons.”

8AM Newscast 01-31-2012

News, Podcasts

January 31st, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Play

7AM Newscast 01-31-2012

News, Podcasts

January 31st, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Play