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Iowa News Headlines: Sun., April 20th 2014


April 20th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Des Moines police say a teenager died while trying to climb onto a slow moving freight train. Police were called to a crossing on the city’s eastside early Sunday and determined that a male in his late teens had been waiting with friends at a rail crossing. The teen tried to climb onto the slow-moving train, possibly to cross to the other side.Police say he fell during this attempt. He was caught beneath the train and dragged along the tracks. Officers didn’t release the name of the teen.

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A Sioux City riverboat casino is preparing to close its doors this summer, but is hoping a court fight will save it. The Sioux City Journal reports that the Argosy Sioux City officially notified Iowa Workforce Development on Friday that the 300-employee boat likely will close by July 1st. That notice followed a vote Thursday by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission for the casino to close down by July.

OYENS, Iowa (AP) — A new surge of volunteers has raised hope that the northwest Iowa town of Oyens can revive its ambulance service, which was discontinued in February because of a lack of crew members. The Le Mars Daily Sentinel reports that ambulance director Dan Cronin has been working to recruit new members, and his work seems to be paying off.

SPERRY, Iowa (AP) — A 21-year-old southeast Iowa man is accused of shooting a neighboring family’s dog while the animal was playing near a 10-year-old boy. The Burlington Hawk Eye reports that Cody Trails Warth of Sperry was arrested Thursday night on suspicion of felony criminal mischief, animal abuse and shooting a rifle across a roadway.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa recruiting coordinator Eric Johnson is leaving the program after 15 seasons with the Hawkeyes. Coach Kirk Ferentz announced Johnson’s sudden departure on Saturday, saying he left to pursue a career opportunity outside of football. Johnson spent the past 10 years coordinating Iowa’s recruiting efforts.

Iowa burn center sees jump in ammonia burns

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – The University of Iowa Burn Treatment Center is reporting a higher-than-normal number of patients suffering from anhydrous ammonia burns. The center says it has treated five people in the last two weeks. The center’s medical personnel say they usually only see one or two cases each year. Official say the high number of patients in such a short amount of time is concerning.

Anhydrous ammonia is used legally by farmers as a crop fertilizer, but is often used, too, for the illegal manufacturing of methamphetamine. The colorless, pungent gas can burn the eyes, throat, skin and damage lung tissue at high exposures.

Veteran’s Career Fair set for April 24th in Des Moines


April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs Director, Colonel Robert King (Retired), encourages Veterans to attend the upcoming Veterans Career Fair on Thursday, April 24, 2014 at Freedom Center – Building S-70, Camp Dodge: 7105 NW 70th Avenue, Johnston, Iowa. A government-issue ID is required for entry onto Camp Dodge.

The Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs and Home Base Iowa are partnering with the Iowa Business Council and the Central Iowa Building Trades to create career opportunities for unemployed and underemployed veterans. All active military servicemen and women, members of the National Guard and Reserves, their spouses, as well as veterans of all ranks and levels of experience are welcome to attend the Veterans Career Fair. Most of the participating Veterans Career Fair employers and organizations have current openings for immediate hiring.

The Veterans Career Fair day will begin with a candidate support session from 9:30-11:00 am. This will include resume reviews, mock interviews, and coaching. A free lunch for Career Fair candidates follows at 11:00 am – 12:00 pm. The Veterans Career Fair participating companies and organizations will receive applications and conduct interviews during 12:00 – 4:00 pm.


The following companies and organizations are scheduled to participate in this Veterans Career Fair:

Aflac, Alliant Energy, Blue Bunny/Wells Enterprises, Casey’s General Stores, Des Moines Area Regional Transit (DART), DuPont Pioneer, Goodwill of Central Iowa, HNI Corp, Hy-Vee, Iowa Bankers, Job Dig, John Deere (Johnston, Ankeny, Urbandale), Mercy Medical Center, New Horizons Computer Learning Centers, Pella Corporation, Pepsi, Pioneer, Principal Financial Group, Rockwell Collins, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Verneer Manufacturing, Wellmark, Wells Fargo; members of the Central Iowa Building & Construction Trades Council (Boilermakers, Bricklayers, Carpenters, Plasterer & Cement Masons, Electricians, Elevator Constructors, Glaziers, Ironworkers, Laborers, Millwrights, Operating Engineers, Painters, Plumbers & Steamfitters, Roofers, Sheet Metal Workers); and representatives from ABC of Iowa Apprenticeship & Training Trust, AIB College of Business, American Legion, DAV Department of Iowa, DMACC, Farmer Veteran Coalition, Iowa State University, University of Dubuque, University of Iowa, University of Northern Iowa, University of Phoenix, VA Central Iowa Health Care System, Veterans Benefit Administration.

Also on hand will be the Des Moines Vet Center and the Mobile Vet Center Van.

Sioux City riverboat casino prepares to close


April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A Sioux City riverboat casino is preparing to close its doors this summer, but is hoping a court fight will save it.  The Sioux City Journal reports that the Argosy Sioux City officially notified Iowa Workforce Development on Friday that the 300-employee boat likely will close by July 1. That notice followed a vote Thursday by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission for the casino to close down by July 1.

But Argosy parent company Penn National Gaming has vowed to ask a judge to suspend the commission’s order, which would allow the boat to remain open while the company pursues a series of legal challenges against the state gambling commission.

Western Iowa arena manager says finance improving


April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — The general manager of the Mid-America Center in western Iowa’s Council Bluffs says the arena’s financial outlook is improving. Mark Vacanti with Caesars Entertainment tells the Council Bluffs Nonpareil that the city-owned arena and convention facility finished fiscal year 2013 with a $729,000 loss. Vacanti says that was below the average annual loss from the previous 10 years. But he notes that from October through December, the facility — which sit just across the Missouri River from Omaha, Neb. — showed a $52,000 profit.

A portion of the $729,000 loss, provided by Caesars’ accounting staff, was a company investment of $67,000 for replacing equipment and utilities. So far this fiscal year, Vacanti says, the Mid-America Center is showing a profit of $19,000.

Judge orders separate trials for robbery suspects


April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A federal judge has ordered separate trials for three Iowans charged with robbing drug dealers. One of the defendants, 22-year-old Jamal Dean, is currently serving a 25-year sentence for attempted murder in the shooting last year of a Sioux City police officer.

The Sioux City Journal reports that a judge on Friday granted the separate trials requests of Omaha, Neb., attorneys for Dean, 24-year-old Levon Dean Jr., and 33-year-old Sarah Berg. The three were to have been tried together on May 12.

All three are charged with the April 15, 2013, robbery of a drug dealer at a Sioux City motel room. The Dean brothers are also charged with a similar assault and robbery of a second drug dealer a little more than a week later.

(Podcast) 8-a.m. News, 4/19/2014

News, Podcasts

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Area and Iowa News with KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.


Iowa’s egg industry is tops in the US and Easter weekend is a bonus

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Many Iowans will celebrate Easter this weekend by dunking eggs in colored dye and hiding them for young ones to find and place in their baskets. Katie Coyle, spokeswoman for the Iowa Poultry Association, says it’s one the busiest weekends of the year for Iowa’s egg producers.  “We see an increase in egg sales during this time of year because people are decorating them as Easter eggs,” Coyle says. “When people are out purchasing their groceries, we always say grab an extra dozen.”

Coyle says Easter is also the kickoff leading into May which is National Egg Month. Iowa egg producers have some 60-million laying hens producing nearly 15-billion eggs each year. Iowa is the nation’s number-one egg producer, she says, by far.  “Just hands down, there isn’t really any competition,” Coyle says. “The number-two and -three states still don’t produce as many eggs as Iowa combined. It’s a great month for us to get out the message about eggs and the importance of them to the Iowa economy.”

Iowa’s egg industry contributes about two-billion dollars in total sales to the state’s economy and is responsible for nearly eight-thousand jobs. Coyle says eggs are very nutritious and are basically a multi-vitamin in a shell.

(Radio Iowa)

(Podcast) 7:06-a.m. News/Funeral report: Sat. 4/19/2014

News, Podcasts

April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

With KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.


Cass County Non-profit agencies receive $110k in grants


April 19th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

23 non-profit agencies in Cass County have received a total of $110,139 in grants from the Cass County Community Foundation. CCCF Chair Nicholas Hunt says organizations in Cass County that submitted their applications for funds by the Feb. 1st, 2014 deadline, were eligible for grants.

Grant recipients include:

  • Iowa Western Community College Foundation – $18,000 for furnishings & equipment for the student activity center.
  • The City of Massena – $9,000 to create a Veteran’s Memorial section in the City Park.
  • The Cass County Historical Museum – $8,000 for the continued renovation of Annex #2.
  • The Center for the Advancement of Self-Sufficiency, Inc. – $7,000 for computer labs in 4 classrooms.
  • The Atlantic Parks & Recreation Dept. – $6,000 for a new softball scoreboard & new water basketball/volleyball equipment for the pool.
  • Lewis 1st Responders & Firefighters Assoc. – $6,000 for turnout gear.
  • Nishna Valley YMCA – $6,000 for a Scout Hi-Lift, transport cart & pool access chairs.
  • The Parkinson’s Support Group – $6,000 for 2 Expresso HD bikes.
  • The Anita Foundation’s Health and Wellness Center – $5,000 for weight equipment.
  • The City of Griswold – $5,000 to replace a partition in the Community Building.
  • The Hitchcock House – $5,000 for siding on the gift shop/administration bldg.
  • The Ann W. Wickman Child Development Center – $4,000 for building updates.
  • The Cass County Memorial Hospital Foundation – $4,000 to replace fetal monitors and add a cardiac monitor.
  • The City of Marne – $4,000 for a retaining wall, safety cover & pea rock for the children’s play area in the City Park.
  • The Massena Public Library – $2,639 for  a commercial dehumidifier.
  • The City of Anita – $2,000 for carpeting in the Community Center.
  • The Griswold Public Library – $2,000 for treadmills and computers.
  • Anita Child Care – $1,750 for renovations and equipment.
  • and, the City of Lewis’ Public Library – $1,500 for a Heritage Center display case.

All grantees met the criteria as Cass County non-profit agencies or organizations with charitable missions in areas of civic, cultural, health, education and social services. The grant recipients received their checks on Friday, April 18th.

For more information about the Cass County Community Foundation, and/or how you can receive a tax credit for donations to a permanently endowed fund, contact Dennis Nissen, Iowa Foundations Director for the Community Foundations of Southwest Iowa, at 1-800-794-3458.