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Trio of escapees from Clarinda Academy caught Monday morning

News

November 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Three males who escaped from the Clarinda Academy Sunday night were captured and returned to the facility early this (Monday) morning. The teens, two of them black, one Hispanic, were reported missing at around 8:15-p.m.  They were captured shortly before 2-a.m.

No other details were provided. The escapes happened nearly one week after a black male student at the academy jumped out a window and ran from authorities. He also was captured and returned to the facility that provides treatment and shelter to at-risk and delinquent male and female youth from several states.

Iowa early News Headlines: Mon., 11/10/14

News

November 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

ANAMOSA, Iowa (AP) — A group of volunteers have restored a veterans memorial in front of the Jones County Courthouse in Anamosa that was heavily vandalized early last week. Des Moines television station KCCI reportsthat the group gathered Saturday morning to repair the damage — just in time for Veterans Day on Tuesday.

SHENANDOAH, Iowa (AP) — A western Iowa school superintendent fired last week has hired a lawyer to fight fraud and other allegations made against him. The Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil reports that former Shenandoah Community School District Superintendent Jeff Hiser has hired Council Bluffs attorney Eric Hansen. The lawyer is a former Mills County prosecutor.

WINTERSET, Iowa (AP) — A frantic hunt for a runaway, pregnant dog ended happily when searchers found the black lab mix in an Winterset garage — after it had given birth. Des Moines television station KCCI reports that the hubbub began when the dog, which was being flown from Texas to a Wisconsin rescue shelter, slipped out of her harness and fled during a stop at the local airport on Friday. The dog named Ava was found before noon Saturday nursing nine puppies.

KENSETT, Iowa (AP) — A small country church in northern Iowa has launched its own radio station. The Mason City Globe Gazette reports that Elk Creek Lutheran Church in rural Kensett will soon celebrate its 150th anniversary. But it only this month began broadcasting nightly at 91.7 FM under the call letters KWGH.

Atlantic Board of Education to discuss budget priorities Monday evening

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Community School District’s Board of Education will meet in a regular session Monday evening in the Media Center at the High School. During their 7:30-p.m. gathering, the Board will hear special presentations from Jarrod O’Donnell, with regard to All-State Band, and Stephanie Graham, pertaining to Honors English 9 videos.

The Board will also act on approving Open Enrollment Request, various contracts and/or resignations, volunteer coaching positions, and a five-year School Board Review Committee (SBRC) application for Increasing Enrollment, Open Enrollment, and LEP (Limited English Proficiency) Instruction for immigrant/bi-lingual students.

They’re also expected to approve participation with the Iowa Drug and Alcohol Testing Program (IDATP) and an Early Retirement Proposal for the District. Near the end of the meeting, the Atlantic School Board will discuss their Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Priorities, and hold closed sessions with regard to student discipline and an informal evaluation of Superintendent Mike Amstein.

Democratic Senators elect leaders; Plan to strengthen Iowa’s middle class during the 2015 session

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

(Des Moines) The new 26-member Democratic majority of the Iowa Senate met Sunday, to elect their legislative leaders and welcome three newly elected members. The three new elected Democratic Senators will be sworn in on January 12 when the 2015 session begins. They are Chaz Allen of Newton, Tony Bisignano of Des Moines, and Kevin Kinney of rural Oxford. Senator Mike Gronstal of Council Bluffs was elected to continue serving as the Senate Majority Leader of the Iowa Senate.

Gronstal said “We will focus on broadly supported, common sense measures to expand and strengthen Iowa’s middle class. The most serious economic challenge we face is that the recovery has yet to reach the broad majority of Iowans.”

Senator Pam Jochum of Dubuque was re-elected President of the Senate. Senator Steve Sodders of State Center was re-elected Senate President Pro Tempore.  Senate Joe Bolkcom of Iowa City was elected Majority Whip. Senators Mary Jo Wilhelm of Cresco, Amanda Ragan of Mason City, Matt McCoy of Des Moines, and Bill Dotzler of Waterloo were elected Assistant Majority Leaders.

(Press Release)

Dog flees at Iowa airport; later found with litter

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

WINTERSET, Iowa (AP) – A frantic hunt for a runaway, pregnant dog ended happily when searchers found the black lab mix in an Iowa garage – nursing a brand-new litter of puppies. Des Moines television station KCCI reports that the hubbub began when the dog, which was being flown from Texas to a Wisconsin rescue shelter, slipped out of her harness and fled during a stop at the Winterset, Iowa airport on Friday.

Crews searched for the dog, named Ava, overnight. She was found just before noon Saturday in a Winterset home’s garage. And she wasn’t alone. Ava had given birth to nine puppies. Ava and her pups are expected to complete their trip to Wisconsin this week.

Fired Iowa school superintendent hires lawyer

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SHENANDOAH, Iowa (AP) — A western Iowa school superintendent fired last week has hired a lawyer to fight fraud and other allegations made against him after a district investigation. The Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil reports that former Shenandoah Community School District Superintendent Jeff Hiser has hired Council Bluffs attorney Eric Hansen. Hansen is a former Mills County prosecutor.

Hansen says Hiser will respond to the allegations when he has had an opportunity “to see what, if any, evidence the district has.” Hiser was fired earlier this month. A school board member says Hiser submitted fraudulent reimbursements for expenses, violated district policies regarding leave requests and obstructed the board’s investigation.

Cass County Supervisors to meet Monday afternoon

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors will meet Monday afternoon at the Courthouse in Atlantic. During their 1-p.m. meeting, the Board will canvass the votes of the Nov. 4th General Election. They’re also expected to receive a report from Cass County Librarians and a request for funding from the group for Fiscal Year 2016.

The Board will also discuss and possibly act on a VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) telephone system for the courthouse, as well as a Federal Aid agreement to help fund the replacement of a bridge on the Cass-Audubon County line. Other action includes the awarding of a contract for a bridge replacement project on Jackson Road, with the contract being awarded to Cunningham-Reis Company, in the amount of $565, 461. Work on the project is expected to begin later this winter.

And, the Board will act on waterproofing the County’s building at 707 Poplar Street (the site of the future 9-1-1/Communications Center).

Teen trapped & injured during an accident in Page County, Saturday

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A teenager from Clarinda was injured and trapped in the vehicle she was driving following an accident early Saturday afternoon, east of Essex. Authorities said the unidentified 16-year old female was transported by Essex Fire and Rescue to the Clarinda Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries, after Essex Fire and Rescue personnel extracted her from the vehicle by mechanical means.

The accident happened at around 1-p.m. near 2382 150th Street. Officials said the girl was traveling east on 150th Street, when she swerved to miss a deer that ran onto the road. The vehicle entered a ditch, hit a telephone pole and rolled twice before coming to rest on its passenger side.

Villisca man arrested Sat. night on weapon,burglary & drug charges

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County report a man one person was arrested on weapon, burglary and drug charges Saturday night.  29-year old Joshua Dean Cooney, of Villisca, was taken into custody just after 9-p.m., on a valid Montgomery County warrant for carrying weapons, Possession of Burglar Tools, and Possession of a Controlled Substance/Marijuana.

Cooney was booked into the Montgomery County Jail and held on $2,000 cash bond.

USDA Rural Development awards loans totaling $21.9-million to help improve healthcare opportunities in s.w. Iowa

News

November 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Residents living in or near Shenandoah and Audubon will soon have access to improved healthcare options thanks to $21.9 million in loans from USDA Rural Development’s Community Facility program. Bill Menner, USDA Rural Development State Director in Iowa, said the Shenandoah Medical Center will be using a $20,350,000 USDA loan to assist with the construction of a two-story medical clinic addition, as well as making various renovations to the existing hospital and clinic building. The Friendship Home Association in Audubon will be using a $1,567,000 USDA loan to help construct a 12-bed memory care addition to the existing facility.

The addition to the Friendship Home is expected to have five semi-private and two private rooms and will also include a serving kitchen, nurses’ station, activities area, dining room and exterior garden area. When the Shenandoah Hospital project is completed the hospital facility will also have a new surgery area, an expanded emergency department, a new entrance with a single registration point and waiting area, renovated laboratory areas plus updated mechanical systems for the existing facility.

The projects are receiving funding through USDA Rural Development’s Community Facility program which provides loan and grant funding to assist in the development of essential community facilities in rural areas. Loans, grants and loan guarantees can help public bodies or community-based nonprofits build facilities and purchase equipment for such things as healthcare facilities, public safety facilities and services, childcare centers, community buildings and libraries

During the last six years, USDA Rural Development has supported nearly 50 rural hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes and/or assisting living facilities to make needed facility and equipment improvements. USDA grants, loans and guaranteed loan funds to these projects topped $305 million.