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Speeding leads to traffic stop & arrests on drug charges

News

November 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop for speeding Wednesday afternoon on eastbound Interstate 80 in Pottawattamie County, lead to the arrest of two men from Indiana on drug charges. Sheriff Jeff Danker told the Daily NonPareil 26-year old Rusty Drew, of Indianapolis, IN, was arrested a little after 2:15-p.m., after deputies searching his 2013 Kia Optima, found numerous duffel bags containing a total of 68-pounds of marijuana.

Drew, and his passenger 27-year old Martin Gonzalez, also of Indianapolis, were taken into custody on suspicion of possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, tax stamp violation and prohibited acts. Drew was given a warning for speeding. Both men posted a $5,000 bond Thursday morning

GA murder suspect arrested in western IA

News

November 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A man suspected of murder in Georgia was arrested Thursday evening in western Iowa. The Daily NonPareil reports 25-year old Courtney Thomas, of Hapeville, GA, was arrested by Iowa State Patrol Troopers on Interstate 29 northbound, about 4-miles north of the Glenwood exit, at around 5-p.m.

Authorities said Thomas was wanted for murder on a warrant from the Hapeville Police Department in connection with an incident that took place Thursday morning. Georgia authorities contacted ISP at 4:35 p.m. to alert troopers that the suspect, who was being tracked through a cell phone signal, had just crossed from Missouri into Iowa in I-29. He was driving a 2008 black Dodge Charger.

Three patrol officers conducted a felony stop, and Thomas was taken into custody without incident. A 9mm handgun was found in his vehicle. Mills County Sheriff’s deputies transported Thomas to the Mills County Jail, where he was awaiting extradition to Hapeville, which is a suburb of Atlanta.

Iowa early News Headlines: Fri., Nov. 1st 2013

News

November 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board says Governor Terry Branstad’s former chief of staff may not immediately lobby the governor’s office, but can interact with his former colleagues. Jeff Boeyink recently left the administration and joined a Des Moines-based consulting firm. On Thursday the board responded to a request from his attorney for an opinion outlining how he must abide by state rules.

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Authorities have captured a 20-year-old man suspected of killing an Iowa man and dumping his body in South Dakota. Sioux City police say a phone tip yesterday led to the arrest of Martin Castellanos. He was arrested in Sioux City.

MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa (AP) — A patrol car video presented in the trial of a former Iowa jail guard accused of killing his pregnant wife includes the sounds of him sobbing and pledging to kill the person responsible for her death. Seth Techel is heard sobbing as he tells a deputy in the video that he jumped out of the shower after he heard a gunshot, then grabbed a handgun and ran down a hallway.

ORANGE CITY, Iowa (AP) — A day care provider in northwest Iowa has been accused of severely abusing a 3-year-old girl. The state Division of Criminal Investigation says 33-year-old Rochelle Lynn Sapp was arrested yesterday in Orange City. The girl was taken to a hospital Tuesday with serious head injuries, including a fractured skull and brain trauma.

Cass County authorities release information on Marne shooting

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office Thursday, released more information about a shooting incident that took place Wednesday morning, in Marne. Officials say at 10-a.m., the Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of an individual with a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Marne. Upon investigation, 43-year old Scott Edward Sullivan, of Marne, was pronounced deceased from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Marker apologizes for remark about minorities

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Engineer Charles Marker has issued an apology for a comment he made last week at the Board of Supervisors’ meeting. During the meeting, Marker, who was speaking about a bridge construction project, said one of the projects was running behind because a subcontractor had not been able to complete their portion of the project. Marker said based on Federal law, the County is required to have a certain percentage of all projects to minority sub-contractors.

But then he added “You can see what that gets us into…we’re sitting there just waiting on a minority contractor to show up ‘cuz they’ve got other jobs they’re workin’ on, and I guess they don’t get in a hurry. But we’re required to do that and there’s no way around it under federal guidelines.”

That comment irritated an Atlantic resident, who called KJAN News and requested a copy of the audio from the meeting. KJAN provided Marker with a copy of the audio, as well. At Thursday’s Board of Supervisor’s meeting, Marker clarified his statement and apologized if his previous comment offended anyone.

He said quote – “It was not my intent to imply that they {the subcontractor} was procrastinating or would be doing substandard work. I was only trying to explain the County could not open the bridge until all parts of the contract were completed, both those of the contractor and the subcontractor. As stated during last week’s report, they were already working on other projects, and it was not clear how soon they would be available to complete our guardrail {on the bridge near the research farm}. So, if my report was offensive and unclear, I apologize, but it was not my intent to offend anybody.”

The Board thanked Marker for his report and public apology.

Cass Supervisors approve new GIS hire

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors, Thursday, approved the hiring of a new Geographic Information Systems coordinator. Treasurer Tracey Marshall introduced to the board Mary Steinlicht, who has moved to the area from Bemidji, MN. Mary said she used to work for the NRCS – Natural Resources Conservation Service – in Bemidji. She graduated about a year and a half ago from Bemidji State University. She says she already has several projects lined-up to work on in Cass County.

Mary Steinlicht

Mary Steinlicht

In August, Cass County Assessor Brenda Nelson asked for and received the Board’s permission to approve the creation of the position, and to proceed with steps necessary to fill the position. At the time, Nelson said she has the money in this year’s budget for the new hire’s salary and benefits.

In subsequent years, other departments within the County that heavily utilize GIS, would chip in to cover the salary and benefits. Nelson, Cass County Engineer Charles Marker and Treasurer Tracey Marshall all agreed that having a GIS specialist in-house, instead of outsourcing the position would be a time-saver for them, and a great benefit to the taxpayers.

Cass County Supervisors approve Anita Urban Renewal

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors, Thursday morning, passed a Resolution giving  the City of Anita permission to exercise its Urban Renewal Powers, with regard to the establishment of an Urban Renewal Plan and a Tax Incremental Financing (or, TIF) District within two-miles of the City’s boundaries.

Anita City Clerk Lindsey Jahde presented the Board with a copy of the proposed Urban Renewal Plan as prepared by the City’s bonding attorney. Jahde said the purpose of the plan is to capture revenue off of five wind turbines located within a two-mile radius of the City of Anita. She said there are five Capital Improvement Projects the City would use the funds for.

The first is blighted municipal waterworks system in the City of Anita. The City looks to upgrade its well and water treatment facility. The total project cost is about $2.1-million. Planning and Design is estimated to cost $102-thousand. Another project involves blight remediation of some of the City’s Streets which are currently gravel, and have no curbs and gutters for storm water run-off. That’s expected to cost $1.2-million.

One of the other 5 projects involves the improvement of Main Street, in Anita. Phase 1 Planning and Design for the projects is estimated to cost $150-thousand. Blight alleviation, in support of the Anita Economic Development Group is yet another project that would utilize TIF monies from the turbines.

Jahde said proceeds from the turbines alone won’t pay for all the projects, so the City intends to use other funds as they become available. It’s estimated over a period of 20-years, the five-turbines will bring in about $2.4-million in revenue. Cass County Auditor Dale Sunderman said 2010 was the first year percentage add-ons could be captured from TIF revenue, so the City will be able to capture the last 15-percent over the next 20-years. It breaks down to 5-percent the first year, 10-percent the second year, and the third through the 20th year, 15-percent.

Among the next steps for the City of Anita, is to hold a joint meeting between the Board of Supervisors and the Anita Community School District’s Board, along with a public hearing on the Urban Renewal plan November 26th, prior to approval of the plan and ordinance. Final approval is necessary prior to December 1st, because the City has to certify its debt by that date in order to capture the first 5-percent of the TIF revenue by freezing the base year at 2012, so they can begin with the  2013 valuations that will be taxed in 2014.

Mills County Sheriff’s Dept. News

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Mills County Sheriff’s Department reports the arrest on Wednesday, of a Pacific Junction woman. 30-year old Tara Nicole Isenbart was arrested at around 7:45-p.m. in the vicinity of 5th and Lincoln in Pacific Junction, on a charge of Driving While Barred. Her bond was set at $1,000.

And, Sheriff’s officials took a report from a Malvern man last Saturday, with regard to incidents of burglary and theft. No other details were released.

Atlantic woman arrested for Domestic Abuse Assault

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Police Department reports the arrest on Wednesday, of 34-year old Heather Christensen. Christensen was taken into custody on a charge of Domestic Abuse Assault/Choking. She was booked into the Cass County Jail and held pending a court appearance.

Shelby business wins “Dream Big, Grow Here” contest

News

October 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Shelby County business was the winner of the Southwest Iowa Regional Dream Big Grow Here Contest. The 2nd annual pitch off was held this past Monday at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs. Shane and Maritza McCool with Willow Creek Glass Chapel and Banquet Hall in Shelby won the grand prize of $5,000 and will advance to the state level to compete for a chance to win $10,000.

Dream Big, Grow Here winners.

Dream Big, Grow Here winners.

The runner-up and receiving $1,000 was Katrina Riggs, with Egg Krate Antiques LLC of Elk Horn.

Honorable mentions included: Elaine Hollen, with Pudgy Pumpkin Patch Gift Shop of Red Oak; Andre and Eva Franco, with Innovative Strength and Conditioning in Neola; Sheila Roane, with Kitchen Sisters LLC of Persia, and Linda Grimm, with Valley Drug Store in Missouri Valley.

All honorable mentions received $250. Willow Creek Glass Chapel and Banquet Hall will compete in the state competition at the EntreFest Conference in 2014.