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7AM Newscast 07-17-2013

News, Podcasts

July 17th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson


Cyclospora investigation continues…numbers changing

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

(Updated with revised numbers 10:48-a.m. Wednesday)

The Iowa Department of Public Health reports that as of today (Wednesday), they are continuing to receive reports of confirmed cases of Cyclospora infection. The onset dates of the illness suggest the ill people had eaten contaminated food in mid-June. Officials say while the source of the outbreak remains unknown, at no time was an Iowa-grown fruit or vegetable suspected as a cause.

The number of confirmed food-borne intestinal illnesses related to cyclosporiasis in Iowa, is 87, and 27 counties are affected. The Iowa Department of Public Health says at least five people have been hospitalized. Linn County in eastern Iowa continues to lead the state with 31 cases. Polk County has 7 cases, and Pottawattamie County now has 6 cases. Two cases of the illness have been reported in Mills County, and one each in Montgomery, Woodbury and Monona Counties, in western Iowa.

Public health officials say the illness, which causes prolonged diarrhea, is rare. It comes from eating food or drinking water contaminated with feces containing the cyclospora parasite. Many people are reportedly still ill, and some have had relapses of symptoms caused by the parasite.

Learn about the Land brochures available for RAGBRAI & other outdoor enthusiasts

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says for the ninth year in a row, RAGBRAI enthusiasts can Learn about the Land during the 2013 Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa July 21st through the 27th. The joint project between the DNR, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Iowa Limestone Producers Association highlights the land, history, parks and other natural wonders that cyclists encounter on their late July quest across the state.

This year’s route crosses several of Iowa’s major landform regions. The bulk of the ride is over the rolling hills of the Southern Iowa Drift Plain, so riders should be prepared for some serious climbing in and out of valleys. Maps and cross sections are designed to help participants locate nearby parks, cities and landmarks each day of the ride. Look for Springbrook State Park on Day 2, Historic Valley Junction on Day 3, Red Rock Reservoir on Days 4 and 5, and Lacey-Keosauqua State Park on Day 7.

The seven-day set of RAGBRAI brochures produced by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources is available online at www.igsb.uiowa.edu or http://ia.water.usgs.gov. Or, find the brochures July 21st at the Human and Natural History Partners booth at Expo in Council Bluffs where staff from the Office of the State Archaeologist, U.S. Geological Survey and the DNR will be available to answer questions. The brochure can be found each day along the route at the Iowa Conservation Team’s booths.

East Pott. County Fair begins today (Wednesday)


July 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The 2013 East Pottawattamie County Fair is set to begin today (Wednesday), in Avoca. The fair runs through Sunday, and as always, will feature the activities of area 4-H’ers, and entertainment for persons of all ages. Judging for the Queen Contest began Monday, and concludes Thursday evening at 6, with the coronation.

Four young ladies are vying for the title of Fair Queen: 16-year old Jessica Butcher, of Avoca; 17-year old Sophie Kock, of Hancock, and 16-year old Hannah Constable, of Shelby. Those teens will be juniors at A-H-S-T this fall. The fourth contestant is 18-year old Breanna Kixmiller, of Walnut, who will be a senior this fall, at the Atlantic High School.

That same evening, a new event débuts at the fair: a Family Fun Night, featuring carnival games, inflatable’s, face painting, a temporary tattoo artist and prizes for kids.  On the schedule Friday night, is the Texaco Country Showdown, a national touring country music talent search. That’ll be followed by the Figure 8 Races, and a demolition derby.

The East Pott. County Fair concludes with a livestock auction next Monday, July 22nd. For more on the fair, go to PottawattamieCountyFair.com or visit the fair’s Facebook page.

Massena woman wins big in scratch game, Lewis woman wins in Powerball


July 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Lottery reports a woman from Cass County is the latest, big instant scratch game winner in the County, during fiscal year 2013. Kristen Karstens, of Massena, won $50,000 in the “Super Crossword” game, with a ticket purchased at the 21st Century Co-Op C-Store, in Massena.

Fiscal Year 2013 ended June 30th, and the lottery released a review of its top prize winners for the year, last Friday. Officials say Tamara Wiley, of Lewis, was the county’s latest and biggest lotto winner during the year, winning $40,000 in the Powerball game, with a ticket purchased at an Atlantic Casey’s Store.

Even with all those winners, there are lottery prizes that expire without being claimed every year in Iowa. Lottery officials remind players to double-check their tickets for any prizes they may have won. In FY 2013, more than $1.3 million in prizes expired without being claimed in Iowa lotto games. Prize money left unclaimed after redemption deadlines goes into the lottery’s prize pools for future games and promotions.

Winning lotto numbers may be checked by visiting the lottery website at www.ialottery.com or calling the winning numbers hotline at (515) 323-4633. They may also be checked by visiting a lottery retail outlet or calling the lottery at (515) 725-7900 from 8-a.m. to 4:30-p.m. Monday through Friday.  

Iowa early News Headlines: Wed., July 17th 2013


July 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — The family of a man charged in the 1994 killing of a 20-month-old boy has issued a statement expressing sympathy with the child’s family and asking the media to respect its privacy. The Mason City Globe Gazette reportsthe family of 37-year-old Michael Jason Cisneros issued the statement yesterday. Cisneros is charged with first-degree murder in the death of John Joseph Snyder Jr.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The number of people reporting a food-borne intestinal illness believed to have come from a contaminated vegetable is now at 134 in Iowa and Nebraska as new cases continue to surface. Iowa has reported 81 cases of cyclosporiasis spread across 25 counties. The Iowa Department of Public Health says at least five people have been hospitalized.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Authorities in Des Moines say they have made the largest heroin bust in the city’s history. Des Moines police say they seized 11 pounds of heroin and three pounds of methamphetamine from a pick-up truck Saturday on Interstate 80. The Des Moines Register reports that’s more than 440 times as much heroin found in the city last year.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Officials at a Des Moines zoo say a 16-year-old female lion has died of cancer. KCCI-TV reports that Gavivi died after being diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer in 2012. The lion was born in 1997 and came to the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines in 1999.

Red Oak Man arrested for Theft


July 16th, 2013 by admin

The Red Oak Police Department reports 45-year old Raymond Lee Briggs, of Red Oak, was arrested Tuesday on a 5th degree Theft charge. Briggs was arrested in the 400 Block of North 3rd Street where he was found in possession of stolen property from a vehicle burglary that had occurred 20 minutes prior. Briggs was taken to the Montgomery County Law Center and held on $300 cash bond. There is still an open investigation on the vehicle burglary.

Shenandoah H.S. Volleyball Coach killed in a crash Tuesday


July 16th, 2013 by admin

A head-on crash Tuesday afternoon east of Shenandoah has claimed the life of the Shenandoah High School Volleyball Coach. The Iowa State Patrol reports 45-year old Chad Van Houten of Shenandoah died at the scene of the crash at around 2:30-p.m., four-miles West of E Avenue on 190th Street. The driver of the other vehicle, 64-year old Larry Wise of Clarinda, was transported to the Shenandoah Hospital by ambulance. Both men were wearing their seat belts.

Officials say Van Houten was westbound on 190th Street in a 2003 Dodge Intrepid, while  Wise was eastbound in a 2006 GMC pickup. Their vehicles met at the crest of a hill and collided in an offset, yet head-on manner. The accident remains under investigation.

Van Houten coached volleyball at Shenandoah for more than 5-years. He also worked as a guard for the Iowa Department of Corrections in Clarinda, and co-owned a drug store in Clarinda, along with his wife, Annie. Tuesday’s school board meeting in Shenandoah was postponed, and grief counselors called-in to help students, staff and the community deal with the loss.

Atlantic City Council to meet Wednesday evening


July 16th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic City Council will hold its regularly scheduled meeting Wednesday evening, at City Hall. During the meeting, the Council will take action with regard to the 2013 Bull Creek Storm Sewer Improvement Project, including the final plans and specifications, the setting of a bid date and public hearing for August 7th, 2013, and the adoption of a resolution authorizing bids for the project.
The Council will also hold the second reading of an ordinance pertaining to the Storm Water Utility fee. City Administrator Doug Harris reported during the Council’s last meeting on June 26th, that if approved, the ESU rate would increase from $2.50 to $2.85 per month for residential and nonresidential properties. The fees have not been increased since the establishment of the utility in 2003.
And, the Atlantic City Council is expected to set August 7th as the date for a public hearing on an industrial Tax Exemption Request from Iron Specialties. The Council opted to take no action on the matter during their last meeting, because the application was incomplete, and an opinion from the City Attorney indicated that since the property had previously received a tax abatement, it would not qualify for an industrial tax exemption.
In other business, the Council will likely act Wednesday, on authorizing Mayor Dave Jones to sign an Airport Planning and Zoning Agreement between the City and the Iowa Department of Transportation. Their meeting begins at 5:30-p.m.

Council Bluffs preps for thousands of bicycle riders

News, Sports

July 16th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Council Bluffs is preparing for 25-thousand visitors as RAGBRAI begins this weekend. The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa brings in bicyclists from around the world and they’ll start the west-to-east trek in Council Bluffs this year. Kathy Fiscus, with the Council Bluffs Convention and Visitors Bureau, says 20 committees have been working on RAGBRAI preparations for several months, with public safety as the top priority.

Fiscus says, “That means examining the route to make sure the streets are in good shape, to consider where directional signage should go so that semi-truck traffic and RVs and campers and bicycles don’t tangle up and create a mishap.” Fiscus says it’s an honor for Council Bluffs to be the first host city for this year’s big cycling event. “It’s a way to show, not only Iowans, but the world, our beautiful city,” she says. “This year, the tire dip is at the Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park and the exit route this year will go through Council Bluffs, so the riders will see our beautiful Bayliss Park, our historic 100 block of Broadway, for example.”

Council Bluffs hosted RAGBRAI in 2009 and was designated then as City of the Year. Fiscus says 15-thousand bicyclists are expected to leave Council Bluffs Sunday morning for the start of the week-long RAGBRAI. Riders will also pass through Harlan, Perry, Des Moines, Knoxville, Oskaloosa and Fairfield along the route. RAGBRAI ends on July 27th in Fort Madison.

(Radio Iowa)