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Cass County Authorities remind residents not to fall victim to the “Relative in Jail” phone scam

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office is reminding the public to be aware that telephone scams are still alive and well in the county. Most recently reported to officials is the old scam whereby people are called by someone claiming to be that person’s grandchild or other relative and asking for cash to be wired to them so they can get out of jail. If you receive this sort of call, be sure to satisfy yourself as to the true identity of the caller. Never wire money without verifying the whereabouts of your actual relative, and never give out personal or banking information over the phone.

Update – eastbound I-480 to northbound I-29 bridge in Council Bluffs to close Sept. 26 for repairs

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) said Thursday, that the work location has changed but the schedule will remain the same, for the Interstate 480 work scheduled for next week in Council Bluffs. The DOT will be closing the eastbound Interstate 480 to northbound I-29 bridge in Council Bluffs on Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 26th and 27th, to make repairs.

Northbound I-29 traffic will be routed around the construction zone by traveling south on I-29, exiting at 9th Avenue (exit 53A), and traveling north on I-29. Motorists will want to allow some extra time in the morning hours to travel on this detour. The roadway should be reopened to traffic by Friday, Sept. 28, weather permitting.

The Iowa DOT reminds motorists to drive with caution, obey posted speed limits and other signs in the work area, and be aware that traffic fines for moving violations are at least double in work zones. As in all work zones, drivers should stay alert, allow ample space between vehicles and wear seat belts.

3 noncitizens from Council Bluffs charged with voter fraud

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation has charged three people with voter fraud for voting in Pottawattamie County even though they are not U-S citizens. D-C-I assistant director, Chari Paulson, says the three people who live in Council Bluffs were arrested after there was suspicion that they had illegally voted in the 2010 general election and 2011 city election. “This is information that we had gotten from the Secretary of State’s office regarding a possible vote that had been cast by non-U-S citizens in that county,” Paulson says. The information led to the arrest of 52-year-old Albert Harte-Maxwell, 49-year-old Linda Harte-Maxwell and 40-year-old Maria Ayon-Fernandez.

Our agents conducted our normal due-dilligence in a criminal investigation. We made contact with U-S Immigration and Customs to determine their immigration status and then based upon that information, we conducted our investigation and found out that they did vote while they were non-U-S citizens,” Paulson says. Secretary of State Matt Schultz, a Republican, has been involved in a legal battle over trying to take non-citizens off the voters rolls after he found over 35-hundred people through driver’s license records that were not citizens but had vote. A lawsuit was filed to block Schultz from using a federal immigration list to cross-check and remove non-citizen voters. Schultz said during a hearing on the issue that he had turned the names over to the D-C-I and what they did with the names was out of his hands. Paulson says they are looking into more possible voter fraud.

“We still have ongoing investigations in reference to election misconduct in other counties in Iowa,” Paulson says. The three individuals from Council Bluffs turned themselves in today and were released on their own recognizance. Secretary of State Schultz released this comment in connection with the fraud charges: “As Secretary of State one of my primary duties is to ensure that we have fair and honest elections. Every person who cheats in the voting booth deprives a hard-working, eligible citizen of their voice in our government. That is why I have been fighting for election integrity and will continue to do so.“I am grateful for the hard work and dedication DCI has shown so far in their investigation of election crimes in our state.” According to criminal complaints filed, Albert Harte-Maxwell voted in both elections, Linda Harte-Maxwell voted in the 2011 city election, and Maria Ayon-Fernandez voted in the 2010 general election.

(Radio Iowa)

Drought hurts rural economy in 10 states

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The economy in rural parts of 10 Midwest and Western states continued to look weak in September as the drought weighed down agricultural businesses. A new survey of bankers in the region released Thursday showed that the overall economic index remained in negative territory at 48.3 in September. That was slightly better than August’s 47.1 and July’s 47.9, but any score below 50 on the 1-to-100 index suggests that the economy will contract in months ahead. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says the drought is already hurting businesses linked to agriculture like ethanol and farm equipment dealers. The survey covers rural areas of Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. The confidence index was also weak at 43 in September, up from August’s 39.6.

A simple message from Midwestern Farmers

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Coca-Cola Days Parade is Saturday, in Atlantic.

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce says the annual Coca-Cola Days parade, a popular finale for Coca-Cola Days festivities, is on track and accepting entries for a 4 p.m. start on Saturday, Sept. 22nd.  Formerly for ages 12 and under only, the parade is now open to all wanting to participate. Entries from area clubs, businesses, and individuals are accepted, although only the children’s Coca-Cola themed costume contest for 12 and under will be judged and awarded AtlantiCash prizes.

Incorporating the theme of Mixing up Happiness for 20 years is the only requirement. Parade entry forms will be available at 6th and Chestnut in City Park the day of the parade for late entries. The parade is sponsored in part by the Iowa Chapter of Coca-Cola Collectors Club.

Other Coca-Cola Days activities include the Show, Swap & Sell and Collectors Showcase from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Herring Building located at 2nd & Poplar Streets. Merchandise including a Coca-Cola Days ornament will be for purchase with the 2012 shirts. For more information regarding the weekend activities visit CocaColaDays.org or call the Atlantic  Area Chamber of Commerce at 712.243.3017.

Atlantic B&B owner given 30-day extension to complete project

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The owner of a bed and breakfast business in Atlantic who is in violation of the City’s Minimum Maintenance Code, has been given a little more time to complete the exterior portion of his project. City Code Enforcement Officer John Lund said the decision was reached during a meeting this (Thursday) morning with S.F. Martin House owner, Roger Steffens. He says Steffens has been given a 30-day extension, but no more. After that, he will face fines for violating the City’s Code. Lund says the City understands the scope of the project, but at the same time, Steffens has been as much, if not more time than other residents to get their properties into shape, when given a compliance notice.

He says November 1st is the final deadline. Lund says they tried to make it as fair as possible. Regardless of what the National Register of Historic Places guidelines are, he says the City’s “Minimum Maintenance Code is called that for a reason. He says it’s “Not the Historical Victorian Standards Maintenance Code,” and the City is only asking Steffens to get the front entrance way taken care of, siding in-place and for the structure to be painted. Lund says six-months was an unreasonable amount of time for that to take place, to begin with.

Prior to his meeting with Lund, Steffens had faced an October 1st deadline to complete repairs on the exterior of his business, which is on the National Register of Historic places. The building has been what several people have described as an “eye sore” in Atlantic, especially on the east side. Work on the exterior of the house has been underway for at least 15-years, while the inside is pristine. When confronted with the earlier deadline, Steffens said during Wednesday night’s Council meeting that he needed more time to “Do the work the right way,” and that he’s already spent “Tens of thousands of dollars” on the on-going project, but he’s not willing to do the job hap-hazardly.

Atlantic City Councilman Shawn Shouse says it not the type of work being done that is the problem, it is all about the amount of time it is taking to get it done. Shouse said by Steffens’ own admission, he is taking too long. He says that’s what the council feels, as well. Steffens thought he was being singled-out by the City, but Shouse said that’s not the case. Shouse said the City has sent out notices to other property owner’s who are not in compliance with the Code.

OWI arrests in Cass County

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office reports two men were arrested on OWI charges, Wednesday. 34-year old Christopher Anthony Morresi, of Underwood, was taken into custody on charges of OWI 1st, Driving While Barred, and Driving Under Suspension. Morresi was brought to the Cass County Jail and later released on $2,000 bond.

And, 52-year old Mark David Carroll, of Griswold, was arrested Wednesday, on a charge of OWI 2nd Offense. Carroll was taken to the Cass County Jail where he was being held, pending a court appearance.

9AM Newscast 09-20-12

News, Podcasts

September 20th, 2012 by admin

w/ Ric Hanson

Afton Police Dept. Seeking Information on a children’s confrontation Incident

News

September 20th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Union County say the Afton Police Department received a report Wednesday afternoon from two, 10-year old girls, who claim they were confronted by a 50- to 60-year old white male. The incident took place on East Grand Street just west of the East Union School Campus and near the City of Afton REC Fields.  Several East Union After School Daycare staff members observed the confrontation and helped to get the girls to safety on the school campus.

Authorities say the person of interest connection with the incident, had brown eyes, and some brown hair, but was mostly bald on top. He was driving a Green Jeep or Chevy Blazer type 4×4 vehicle with a spare tire on the back. Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Afton Police Chief John Coulter at 641-347-5255, or local law enforcement. The Afton Police Department is following up on other leads.