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Iowa early News Headlines: Thu., Sept. 11 2014


September 11th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — First Lady Michelle Obama will campaign in Iowa next month for Democratic Senate candidate Bruce Braley, his campaign announced on Wednesday. Obama will appear at an event in October, but the Braley campaign said details on the date and location have not been worked out.

WEST BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) — The police chief for West Burlington in southeast Iowa said he’s been hospitalized for damage to his spinal cord, and he’s unsure about his recovery. Police Chief Frank Newberry said Tuesday he is paralyzed from the waist down after a disc in his back ruptured. The injury caused damage to his spinal cord, he tells the Burlington Hawk Eye. The 57-year-old Newberry has been police chief since 2012.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — A man suspected of fatally stabbing a Davenport woman and injuring her husband has been captured in western Illinois. Rock Island County Sheriff Jeff Boyd said Tuesday that Gary Fortune had been apprehended but didn’t provide any other details, the Quad-City Times reported yesterday.

AMES, Iowa (AP) — The University of Iowa announced yesterday plans to create a program that would allow some students to earn their undergraduate degree in three years. University President Sally Mason told the Iowa Board of Regents that the program will be implemented by the end of this academic year. For a limited number of majors, students will be promised a degree in three years if they take summer classes and meet certain academic milestones.

Western Iowans part of ISU Theatre’s 100th anniversary season performance of “Spring Awakening”


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The ISU Theatre 2014-15 season marks the hundredth anniversary of organized theatre at Iowa State University. That was when Fredrica V. Shattuck organized a group of interested students and formed Iowa State Players. ISU Theatre’s opener, “Spring Awakening,” first performed under heavy censorship in Germany in 1906. “Spring Awakening” closed after just one night in New York in 1917 amid public outrage and charges of obscenity.

The story traces the dawning sexual awareness of four teenagers, Melchior, Moritz, Wendla, and Hanschen, who, in their painfully funny contradictions—-they are at once too innocent and not remotely innocent at all-—remain fresh and unsettling even in our own sex-saturated culture.

Stacy Hansen

Stacy Hansen

“Spring Awakening” features as guest director Exira native and ISU alum Stacy Hansen, who graduated from Iowa State in 1992 with a degree in speech communication/theatre and education. Also appearing in the production is: Taylor Sklenar , a senior in performing arts, English, and chemistry from Treynor; Christopher Tedford, who is a senior in engineering from Cumberland;Emily Tigges, a senior in performing arts from Carroll, and Austin Farwell, a senior in performing arts from Council Bluffs.

Iowa State University Theatre’s production of “Spring Awakening” opens on Friday, October 3 at 7:30 p.m. in Fisher Theatre in the Iowa State Center.

Chris Tedford

Chris Tedford

Other performance dates are October 4, 10, and 11 at 7:30 p.m. and October 5 and 12 at 2 p.m. in Fisher Theater, Ames. The production features mature themes, sexual situations, and explicit language. Tickets are priced at $18 for adults, $16 for seniors, and $11 for students. Tickets can be purchased through any TicketMaster, the Iowa State Center Ticket Office in Ames, or at the door before performances.

Wastewater discharge reported in Shelby


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

(Updated 4:15-p.m.)

Officials with the Iowa DNR said Wednesday that authorities in Shelby reported a sewer line that runs from the town to the city’s lagoons washed out at a small creek crossing, causing untreated wastewater to discharge.

The city estimates between 100 and 200 gallons per minute of wastewater flowed directly into Little Silver Creek until the discharge ended at 3-p.m.

The DNR recommends keeping children and pets away from the creek for 24 to 48 hours after repairs are completed. The DNR will continue to monitor the situation.

Red Oak woman & Atlantic couple arrested on drug charges


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office reports a woman from Red Oak and a man and woman from Atlantic were arrested Tuesday, on drug and other charges. 24-year old Courtney Nicole Orr,  of Red Oak, was arrested on charges of OWI 2nd Offense and Possession of a Controlled Substance. Orr was taken to the Cass County Jail where she remains held on $3,000 bond.
And, 35-year old Charles Theodore Shroyer, of Atlantic, was arrested Tuesday on charges of Controlled Substance Violation and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, while 30-year old Jessica Nichole Shroyer, of Atlantic, was arrested on a charge of Controlled Substance Violation. Both were taken to the Cass County Jail where they were released later that day on $5,000 bond each.

More than $1.5 Million in CAT Grants Awarded to Iowa Communities


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Vision Iowa Board has awarded $1,675,000 in Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) grants for a new YMCA in Council Bluffs and a Veterans Service Center in Waverly. The grants were approved by the Vision Iowa Board at their meeting in Des Moines today (Wednesday).

In western Iowa, the YMCA of Greater Omaha received an award amounting to $1-million towards the more than $16.1million cost of a new Council Bluffs YMCA. The CAT grant award is contingent upong completed fundraising within 90-days. Officials has requested $2-million.

Th project includes the construction of a new 73,000-square-foot YMCA in downtown Council Bluffs. The facility will include a health and wellness center with walking track, warm water therapy pool, gymnasium with bleacher seating for 1200 people, aquatics center with warm water and lap pools, early childhood education center, teen center, family center, outdoor splash zone, teaching kitchen and adjacent surface parking for 136 vehicles.

The Vision Iowa Program provides financial incentives to communities for the construction of recreational, cultural, educational or entertainment facilities that enhance the quality of life in Iowa. Currently, 393 CAT awards have been granted by the board, totaling more than $149.1-million.

Iowa State Patrol Reminds Football Fans to Be Safe This Weekend

News, Sports

September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

This weekend, the largest in-state rivalry between the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Iowa State Cyclones will take place at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City. The Iowa State Patrol reminds all fans traveling to and from the game and parties across the state to be safe.

The Iowa State Patrol offers the following tips for a safe weekend of football fun:

Plan ahead, leave early for your destination.
Slow down and expect heavy traffic delays.
Be patient if you encounter heavy traffic.
Pay attention and avoid any unnecessary distractions.
Obey all directions given by law enforcement officers.
Don’t drink and drive.
Buckle up!
A much higher volume of traffic is expected on Saturday in and around the Iowa City area. Some fans will arrive several hours before kickoff, so traffic congestion can be expected many hours prior to and following the conclusion of the game. Motorists not attending the game are encouraged to find alternate routes.

By following these simple tips, the Iowa State Patrol hopes everyone remains safe while cheering on the Hawkeyes and Cyclones.

Mills County S/O arrest report


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Mills County released a report on their most recent arrests, Wednesday (today). On Tuesday, 51-year old Joyce Kay Ayers, of Glenwood, was arrested on a warrant for Theft in the 5th degree. Her bond was set at $300. Last Sunday, 37-year old Shane Perry Koglin, of Omaha, was arrested for Possession of a Controlled Substance. His bond was set at $1,000. That same day, 23-year old Vanessa Nicole Miller, of Omaha, was arrested for Driving While Revoked. Her bond was also set at $1,000.

Last Friday, deputies in Mills County arrested 29-year old Brett Allen Coyle, of Glenwood, on charges of Interference with Official Acts and False Reporting. Bond was set at $600. Also on Friday, 58-year old Charles Kent Tochum, of Pacific Junction, was arrested on a warrant for Sexual Assault in the 3rd degree. His bond was set at $10,000.

And last Thursday, 29-year old Kenton Jarvis Schooling, of Council Bluffs, was arrested at the Pottawattamie County Jail on a Mills County warrant for Failure to Appear on an OWI/1st offense charge. Bond was set at $5,000.

Average price to rent corn, soybean ground in Iowa: $260 an acre

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A new government report finds the average price to rent Iowa farmland has gone up slightly this year.
According to the U.S.D.A.’s Agricultural Statistics Service, rental rates are averaging 260-dollars per acre in Iowa this year for corn and soybean ground. That’s about five bucks an acre higher than last year. The most expensive farmland in the state is in Grundy County, where the average rental rate is 322 dollars an acre. The cheapest is in Appanoose County, where rent was 149-dollar per acre on average. (A link to the report for all of Iowa’s 99 counties can be found here: http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Iowa/Publications/County_Estimates/reports/IA_county%20Cash%20Rent%2013-14.pdf)

The U-S-D-A report concludes the average price to rent pasture land in Iowa is 50 dollars an acre.  An Iowa State University Extension survey released in April concluded farmland rental prices statewide had DECLINED “moderately” from 2013. It was the first reported decrease in rental rates for corn and soybean fields since 1999. A retired I-S-U economist said the decrease was due to lower commodity prices for the crops that will be grown on that rented ground. The I-S-U and U-S-D-A reports did find the SAME average rate of 260-dollars an acre for row crop rentals.

(Radio Iowa)

Heavy rain brings widespread flooding, much colder temps on the way

News, Weather

September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Much of Iowa’s southern half got drenched in heavy thunderstorms Tuesday afternoon and evening, pushing rivers and streams well out of their banks and flooding roadways, back yards and basements. Meteorologist Miles Schumacher, at the National Weather Service, says some areas of the state report getting four inches of rain in just 45 minutes.

“Most areas had over two inches, around three inches in Des Moines and we’ve had amounts as high as five to six inches in southwest Iowa, toward Creston,” Schumacher says. “Most areas in the southern two tiers of counties got at least three, three-and-a-half inches.” River banks and storm sewer lines were overwhelmed while Flood Warnings are still in effect for numerous counties this (Wednesday) morning across Iowa’s southern half, almost everything south of Interstate 80.

“There’s just a lot of water and a lot of roads underwater,” Schumacher says. “County officials are quite busy barricading roads and there are some washouts in Union County and Warren County. The rivers are flooding. We’ve got rivers in moderate flood stage.” While there’s a chance for more rain Thursday and Friday, forecasters say it shouldn’t be nearly as bad as this latest storm, while much colder weather will be pushing into the state over the next few days.

“After that, it looks like temperatures will be generally in the 30s across the north and low 40s across the south for Saturday morning,” Schumacher says. “Quite cool for this time of the year. Not quite records but getting close.” See more details on the forecast at weather-dot-gov.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass Supervisors receive roads and 9-1-1 Center Updates


September 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors today (Wednesday) received updates on the status of various road projects and the 9-1-1 Communications Center project. In his report to the Board, County Engineer Charles Marker said he would be checking the roads in the county for washouts and damage following Tuesday’s heavy rain, but he hadn’t heard of too many issues at the time of his report.

In other news, Marker said the Interstate 80 bridge northeast of Marne on County Road M-56 was officially closed Monday, and county crews have bladed a detour route. Construction on the bridge deck replacement project takes place at night, so as to keep traffic moving as normal as possible during the day. A concrete box replacement project north of Marne being worked on by Gus Construction is nearly complete, and has a required sand backfill around the box. All the remains, according to Marker, is the placing of dirt on top of the sand, and then rock on top of the road.

Another bridge deck project by DENCO Construction, is underway on County Road N-28 north of Cumberland. There are two other projects to follow once the N-28 work is done. Cass County 9-1-1 Director Rob Koppert told the Board there were “A couple of issues” with the facility under construction at the former law firm building across the street to the southwest of the Courthouse.

The first was a tiny room under the stoop where a fire extinguishing system is going to be installed. Koppert said there were some “water issues” following recent rains. Supervisor Chuck Rieken said he was aware of the issue, and it was being taken care of. The second issue has to do with a slight sagging of the floor above the dispatch center, where the Cambridge Law Firm has their lobby.

Koppert said they removed three shelving units to make way for the communication center’s equipment and dry wall work. Unknown to the architects or anyone else, those shelves apparent bore some of the weight from above, because when the tenants above or their clients walk on the floor, it has some “bounce.” The issue does not however, constitute a problem with structural rigidity or building safety.

Koppert was instructed to work with the contractor to determine the most cost effective means of adding support to the ceiling without interfering with the Comm. Center’s space. Most of the construction should be finished by mid-November, with the equipment installed by the end of December. The Center should be ready to open no later than June 1st, 2015.