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Iowa field work is starting as farmers are prepping for planting

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The U-S-D-A’s first crop update for the 2015 growing season says nearly 75-percent of Iowa’s cropland has adequate-to-surplus soil moisture. It also finds almost one-third of the state’s fields are short-to-very short of moisture for the upcoming growing season. Iowa State University agronomist Aaron Saeugling, who covers 14 southwest Iowa counties, says many Iowa farmers are starting their field work in preparation for planting.

“We’ve been busy applying fertilizer this spring,” Saeugling says. “A little bit of tillage, very little seeding has occurred at this point in the growing season. As moisture goes, I would say this is one of the drier springs that we have experienced here as of late, although the forecast is for precipitation all week, so hopefully we can get some measureable precipitation out of that.”

Joel DeJong, a field agronomist with the Iowa State University Extension based in Le Mars in northwest Iowa, says the dry conditions during March helped many growers to check off their pre-planting chores. DeJong says a little rain could help, but soil conditions are okay. He says he’s optimistic about the chances of growers getting the needed moisture to recharge the soil once they begin seeding.

Right after planting, he says farmers will need water to re-wet that top surface so the seeds will get started and get those root systems growing down to where that water is stored.

(Radio Iowa)

Red Oak man arrested for indecent exposure

News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Police in Red Oak have arrested a man wanted on a warrant charging him with Indecent Exposure. 62-year old John M. Rush, of Red Oak, was taken into custody Monday afternoon in Council Bluffs. Rush was transported to the Pottawattamie County Jail and held until he could be picked up by Montgomery County Deputies. He was being held in the Montgomery County Jail Monday evening on $10,000 cash bond.

And, Deputies in Montgomery County arrested 40-year old Troy Alan Myers, of Red Oak, Monday afternoon. Myers was wanted on a warrant for Child Endangerment. His bond was set at $2,000.

Advocates march at Capitol in favor of medical marijuana law

News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Advocates seeking expanded access to medical marijuana in Iowa held a march at the state Capitol. More than 50 supporters of a proposal to expand the use of medical marijuana participated Tuesday. They support legislation that has won committee-level approval in the state Senate and could soon come up for a floor vote.

The legislation would make medical marijuana available to people with certain chronic diseases, such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Those approved by a doctor could purchase marijuana products produced in Iowa and sold at state-licensed dispensaries.

Last year, the Legislature approved a law allowing some residents with epilepsy to use oil with an ingredient derived from marijuana for treatment. But the law did not establish an in-state program for the production and distribution of the oil.

 

Allowing Iowa schools to keep a supply of EpiPens

News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A bill making its way through the legislature would allow schools to keep “Epi-Pens”  on hand to use if students have an allergic reaction to something. Representative Norlin Mommsen, of DeWitt, is the bill’s floor manager in the House. “I have received multiple conversations and emails concerning the importance of this bill,” Mommsen says. “It can be best summed up by a comment made by a fellow representative: ‘We have the opportunity to pass this bill before there’s a tragedy and we have to attach a name to it.'”

Iowa schools currently have the authority to stock inhalers which can be used if a student has an asthma attack. This bill would allow Iowa schools to have the “pens” that dispense a single dose of epinephrine if a student has an allergic reaction to something like a bee sting or food. The school could get a prescription for “EpiPens” and only trained personnel would be able to administer a dose, if the bill becomes law.

Iowa is one of just four states that do not have this kind of a law and Representative Kirsten Running-Marquardt, of Cedar Rapids is among the group of Iowa legislators and school nurses that has been working on this proposal for eight years. “I can’t explain the increase in severe allergies in our children,” Running-Marquardt says, “the birthday parties where you now have to know which children have a nut, egg or milk allergies and the EpiPen carrying cases that children have now with their name on them, so you can tell whose belong to who.”

She cited a report indicating 25 percent of the episodes that are the first indication a child has a food allergy occur at school. Representative Mary Mascher, a retired teacher from Iowa City, says “EpiPens” are expensive, but some drug companies provide them free of charge to schools. “This really is a bill that could save children’s lives,” Mascher says. The bill cleared the Senate unanimously on March 17th.

It was changed slightly by the House Tuesday, to allow “agents” of a school — like a classroom volunteer or a parent watching a football game on school grounds — as well as school employees to administer an “EpiPen” dosage if they are trained to do so. That change must be approved by the Senate before the bill can go to the governor’s desk for his review.

(Radio Iowa)

Public meeting to be held with regard to River Valley OHV Park

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS – A public meeting will be held regarding the River Valley OHV (Off Highway Vehicle) Park in Council Bluffs on April 15th, from 6-7 p.m., at the Western Historic Trail Center. The center is located at 3434 Richard Downing Ave. in Council Bluffs. The meeting is being held to discuss temporary closing of the park due to hazardous
trees, plans to remove the trees and the time frame for reopening the park.

Information will be presented on the proposed forestry plan, environmental review,
proposed logging, timber sale and removal of invasive tree and plant species at the
park.

Public comments and questions will be taken following the informational portion of
the meeting. Those unable to attend can submit comments to David Downing, DNR OHV program manager at David.Downing@dnr.iowa.gov.

Iowa early News Headlines: Wed. April 8th 2015

News

April 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A West Des Moines man says his brother, who called for immigration reform before being deported to Mexico in September, has been killed. Leonardo Morales told The Associated Press that Constantino Morales was shot and killed Sunday night in the Mexican state of Guerrero. Details about the shooting weren’t available. Leonardo Morales says his brother would be alive if he hadn’t been deported

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio will appear at a fundraiser for a progressive group during an Iowa visit this month. Progress Iowa Executive Director Matt Sinovic says de Blasio will be a guest at a reception on April 16 in Des Moines. De Blasio, a Democrat, is making a number of out-of-state trips as he seeks to grow his national profile. His Iowa visit comes as the 2016 presidential hopefuls are starting to woo voters in the kickoff caucus state.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa House committee has approved legislation that would exempt the sale of honey bees from certain taxes, though one lawmaker questioned the point of the bill. The measure would exempt the sale of honey bees from the state’s sales tax and use tax, which is at a 6 percent rate. The bill now heads to the full House.

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — A former Dubuque police officer has pleaded not guilty to charges that he had sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl. Twenty-nine-year-old Kyle C. Cross pleaded not guilty to two charges of third-degree sexual abuse. Court documents say a woman contacted Dubuque police in February to report her 14-year-old daughter had run away. Police say they found her at Cross’ residence. According to a criminal complaint, both Cross and the girl admitted they had sexual contact.

As many as 30 oil trains cross Nebraska, Iowa each week

News

April 7th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The number of trains carrying at least a million gallons of volatile crude oil across Nebraska and Iowa has increased significantly this spring. BNSF railroad has told emergency management officials in both states that it’s now hauling 20 to 30 trains loaded with oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region through the area each week on average.

That’s up significantly from last summer when federal regulators began requiring railroads to notify state officials about trains carrying at least 1 million gallons of oil.

Railroad shipments of crude oil are facing additional scrutiny and tougher regulations because there have been several fiery derailments involving the commodity in recent years. The worst one happened in July 2013 and killed 47 people in a small Canadian city just across the U.S.-Canada border from Maine.

Volunteers needs to pack meals in the fight against hunger

News

April 7th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Volunteers are needed to help prepare food packages as part of an effort to provide “Meals from the Heartland.” Pastor Doug Opp, in Audubon, says the organization (mealsfromtheheartland.org) started in 2007 helping to meet the needs of the hungry in Iowa and elsewhere in the U-S and around the world.  Pastor Opp says more than 10.6-million meals were packed last year with the help of Iowans and other volunteers. This year, the goal is 15-million meals.

Meals from the Heartland 2013 event

Meals from the Heartland 2013 event

Opp says the Iowa National Guard Armory in Audubon is the site this Friday, April 10th, or the latest effort to help packing the meals. The event will be ongoing throughout the afternoon and evening. $32,000 has been raised to date, which allows 160,000 meals to be packed. Each meal includes soy, rice, vitamins and nutritional supplements.

The goal is to get enough volunteers to assemble the packs. Each pack serves six people.

To volunteer an hour of your time to help, call 712-563-2625, text 712-304-5567. The shifts run from 3-until 8-p.m., Friday. Area high school students will be packing from Noon until 3. The public is needed to help pack afterward, especially from 3-to 4-pm, and 7-to 8-pm. Interested persons need to arrive 15 minutes before their shift, in order to view a training video.

You can also help by making a tax deductible donation. Address your checks to Meals from the Heartland, and give to your local church. If you have questions, call Pastor Doug Opp at 712-563-2625, or Pastor Steven Frock at 712-268-2660. The packages will be transported in boxes and then on pallets before being trucked to West Des Moines. Persons in the State of Iowa will be provided with meal packs first, before they are sent to the rest of the U-S and the world.

4 arrested in connection w/northeast IA bank robbery

News

April 7th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in northeast Iowa’s Jones County say four people were arrested on 1st Degree Robbery and other charges, following a bank robber Monday afternoon. Authorities say at around 12:15-p.m, the Jones County Sheriff’s Office received a call from the Exchange State Bank in Martelle. The bank reported they were robbed at gunpoint by two suspects who entered the bank carrying long guns. The two suspects made off with an undisclosed amount of money. The two suspects were seen getting into a white Buick Lesabre, with no plates, and headed northbound on Hwy 1.Jones_Co_Bank_Roberry

At 12:35 PM, the Jones County Sheriff’s Office received a citizen’s report of a white car abandoned on 230th Avenue, North of 35th St., that appeared to be smoking. Officers with the Linn County Sheriff’s Office, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa DOT Enforcement, and Jones County Sheriff’s Office responded and located the car. The car had been on fire and Lisbon Fire Department, who also responded, put out the fire. The vehicle was soon confirmed as the vehicle seen leaving the bank.

Based on information collected at the two scenes, two separate traffic stops led to four people being questioned and eventually arrested in connection with the Martelle bank robbery. The suspects include: 24-year old Andrew Palmer, of Mechanicsville; 22-year old Shiloh Palmer, of Mt. Vernon; 41-year old Peter Olinger, and 25-year old Elibabeth Olinger, both of Mechanicsville.

Shiloh Palmer

Shiloh Palmer

Elizabeth Olinger

Elizabeth Olinger

Peter Olinger

Peter Olinger

Andrew Palmer

Andrew Palmer

Brothers Andrew Palmer and Shiloh Palmer, were charged with Robbery in the 1st Degree. Peter and Elizabeth Olinger, who are husband and wife, face charges of Aiding & Abetting to Robbery in the 1st Degree. Peter Olinger is accused of driving Andrew and Shiloh Palmer to the Exchange Bank in Martelle, Iowa. Peter Olinger stayed in the vehicle while Andrew and Shiloh Palmer entered the bank, with long guns, and took an undisclosed amount of money. Elizabeth Olinger is accused of meeting the other three defendants on 230th Avenue, where they abandoned the white “get away” car and switched into another vehicle.

The investigation and collection of evidence will continue over the next several days.

Minor injuries reported following Union County crash

News

April 7th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A Creston man was transported to the hospital following a collision Monday afternoon, east of Afton. The Union County Sheriff’s Office says 20-year old Jesse Christensen, who was wearing his seat belt, complained of pain and possible injuries. He was extricated from his vehicle, and was transported to the Greater Regional Medical Center in Creston by ambulance following the crash, that happened at around 4:20-p.m..

Authorities say Christensen was traveling east on Highway 34 at the same time a 1999 Dodge pickup driven by 22-year old Eric Downey, of Afton, was traveling south on Redwood Avenue. Downey stopped at the intersection, but then proceeded south into the intersection, where his pickup struck Christensen’s 2000 Pontiac Grand Am. Following the collision, the Pontiac came to rest in the south ditch.

Damage from the crash amounted to $9,000. Officials cited Downey for Failure To Yield Upon entering a through highway.