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Carter Lake house fire may be arson related


February 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

An official with the State Fire Marshal’s Office says it appears arson was the cause of a fire the severely damaged a home in Carter Lake early Tuesday morning.  John Ticer told the NonPareil that the fire at 802 Redick Boulevard was set on purpose, but he declined to elaborate. Firefighters from Carter Lake and Crescent were dispatched to the blaze around 1-a.m., Tuesday.  The fire reportedly caused about $35,000 damage to the unoccupied home.  The structure had been vacant for only about a week, while the owners were in the process of moving.  An investigation into the cause of the fire continues. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the State Fire Marshall’s Office at (712) 308-3977.

Teen from northwestern Pott. County injured during accidental shooting


February 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Pottawattamie County report an 18-year-old from Crescent suffered a serious injury when he accidentally shot himself in the leg, Thursday. Pottawattamie County Sheriff Jeff Danker told the Daily NonPareil that the teen, whose identity was not released, shot himself in the thigh at around 6:30-p.m. The accident apparently happened as he  was trying to clear a cartridge from an SKS rifle. Danker said the wound was “severe” enough that the teen was required to be transported from a Council Bluffs hospital by air ambulance to Alegent Creighton Health Creighton University Medical Center.

Medical marijuana bill killed in Iowa House


February 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A proposal that would let doctors prescribe marijuana to ease the pain of their patients is going nowhere in the Iowa House. A three-member House subcommittee held a 40-minute public hearing on the concept Thursday, then two of the legislators involved killed the legislation. Representative Clel Baudler, a Republican from Greenfield, says it’s an “asinine” idea.  “I’ve watched state government function since 1962 and doing any bill, let alone this one, that would legalize marijuana would be at the top one or two of three stupidest bills that have been passed by this organization, in my opinion,” Baudler says.

Ray Lakers of Des Moines says he needs marijuana as treatment for his multiple sclerosis. “A growing number of people across the United States and the world with multiple sclerosis have shown great benefit of using cannabis rather than FDA drugs,” Lakers says. Representative Deborah Berry, a Democrat from Waterloo, says as her brother was dying several years ago, he smoked marijuana to relieve the pain of his cancer. “Alcohol and tobacco — I think those are much more addictive, much more dangerous in my opinion,” Berry said. “I think that we should at least just open it up and investigate the use of medical marijuana.”

Peter Komendowski, president of the Partnership for a Drug Free Iowa, disagrees. “In your opinion marijuana may not be as dangerous as cigarettes or alcohol,” Komendowski said. “I still think it represents a clear and present danger and one we need to work to the fullest extent of the law to protect our children from.” Mike Niday, of Des Moines, a Marine Corps veteran who suffers from post-traumatic stress, urged legislators to allow prescriptions for marijuana.  “I just hope that you listen to Iowans’ voices and you vote for what we want,” he said, “because you’re representing us.”

Erin Kennedy of Nevada works with kids with substance abuse problems. She predicted medical marijuana would wind up in the hands of those who do NOT have a prescription for it.  “I’m sure we’ve put every precautionary method that we can think of in place for tobacco and alcohol,” she says, “and yet our youth continue to get access to that.” Marijuana is illegal in the United States but 18 states have laws which permit marijuana to be prescribed as a treatment for the symptoms of pain and nausea, often associated with chronic and fatal illnesses.

(Radio Iowa)

Page County man arrested on Cass County warrant


January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Page County Sheriff’s Office says a Shenandoah man was arrested  Thursday on a warrant out of Cass County. 36-year old Daniel Elmer Bright was arrested on a warrant charging him with 2nd degree theft. Bright was unable to post a $5,000 bond. He was transferred to the custody of Cass County Deputy shortly after his arrest.

Cass Co. Conservation receives REAP-CEP grant

Ag/Outdoor, News

January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Naturalist Lora Kanning announced Thursday, that Cass County Conservation was awarded a Resource Enhancement and Protection Program- Conservation Education Program (REAP-CEP) Perpetuate a Good Idea Grant for Outdoor Educational Classroom Nature Trunks. This Resources Ehancement mini-grant provided funding to Cass County Conservation to complete two Nature Trunks that will be housed at the Outdoor Educational Classroom in Massena, IA. The project has 6 trunks total; the two funded are the Orienteering and the Birds’ trunks. Each trunk will contain multi-grade activities on the topic for teachers to use at the Outdoor Educational Classroom.

Iowa’s  REAP-CEP provides funding to public and private partners for natural and cultural resource projects, including water quality, wildlife habitat, soil conservation, parks, trails, historic preservation, and more. Conservation Education Program is grants for programs that teach people of all ages about their environment and how to make intelligent, informed decisions about its well-being.

For more information about the environmental education opportunities in Cass County, contact Lora Kanning at 712-769-2372 or lkanning@casscoia.us .

Cass Supervisors set Zoning Ordinance hearing dates


January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors have set February 13th and 20th as the dates for public hearings over a proposed amendment to the County’s zoning ordinance, which would allow for the creation of businesses that allow gun sales and service, along with an indoor shooting range. Under the current zoning ordinance, such businesses are not allowed.

The County’s Planning and Zoning Commission approved the proposed amendment during its meeting Jan. 24th, and have forwarded their recommendation on to the Board of Supervisors, who will decide on the amendment’s fate after the two public hearings are held. A local man has proposed establishing a gun sales/repair and indoor shooting range business, near Massena.

Cass County Supervisors & Jailers Union present initial bargaining proposals


January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors were supposed to have met Thursday, with a representative of the Jailer’s Union with regard to an exchange of collective bargaining proposals, but the AFSCME representative failed to show up. Regardless, Auditor Dale Sunderman provided the media with copies of both proposals.There were many areas of the three-year contact where the County and the Jailer’s Union disagree. One of those areas concerns wages.

The Union proposes a 3.5-percent wage increase effective July 1st, 2013, for all steps and pay grades of the salary schedule, and a shift differential increase amounting to 80-cents per hour for jailers, which would match that of deputies. The County instead, proposes giving all Deputies a base annual salary, which is 70-percent of the Sheriff’s annual base salary. All remaining non-deputy union members would receive a 3-percent salary increase.

Cass County says it also does not agree with the Union, with regard to discussion about the Sheriff’s Office overtime policy, and Holiday time for regular full-time employees, which would allow 11 holidays instead of the previous 10, and would include Christmas Eve. The County also does not see eye-to-eye with the Union as far as Standby and on-call pay is concerned, whereas the Union proposes employees will be paid a minimum of two-hours, when called out while on standby.

There are others issues for which the two sides do not agree, including the County’s request all union Jail employees contribute more toward the cost of their insurance per month, beginning in year two of the contract. The increase would amount to $20 the second year and $40 the third year.

No date was set at the end of the Supervisor’s meeting for both sides to sit down and hold a closed session on the initial bargaining attempt, which is the next step in the negotiating process.

Shelby County snowplow rolls over – 1 person hurt


January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Officials in Shelby County say a county road department employee suffered only minor injuries following a rollover accident in a snowplow Wednesday. The Shelby County Sheriff’s say 45 year old Tracy Klein of Harlan was traveling east on County Road F-58 in a 1998 Mack snow plow when blowing snow blinded the driver. The plow drifted onto the south shoulder and was pulled into the south ditch.

Once in the ditch, the vehicle rolled over one and one-half times coming to rest on the driver side. The accident took place around 6:55am Wednesday about one half mile east of Elk Horn. The Elk Horn Fire Department responded and had to extricate Klein from the plow. He was transported to Myrtue Memorial Hospital for treatment.

(Update): Bottle bombs lead to 3 arrests in Atlantic


January 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

(This is an update to our earlier, posted story)

Three Atlantic teens were arrested Wednesday night for using and possessing homemade explosive devices, after police responded to a report of “shots fired.” Atlantic Police Chief Steve Green said the call about activity in the 300 block of Maple Street came in at around 9:10-p.m. Green says the officers arriving also heard what sounded like gun shots, and observed  individuals in the second story of an apartment looking out the window. Green says an investigation determined the individuals were allegedly throwing pop bottle bombs outside from the window to the ground and watching them blow up.”

The officers who arrived and heard the loud noises had their guns drawn, but no shots were fired from their weapons. Soon after the individuals were questioned, officers discovered two unexploded bottle bombs in the yard. The Iowa State Patrol responded and disabled the devices by firing rubber bullets at them to relieve the pressure inside the bottles. He says rubber bullets are generally used for riot control and while not intended to be lethal, if fired at a person’s head, they can become lethal.

Green says that would explain why people thought they heard two different sets of gunshots. One was the bottle bombs going-off, the other was the sound of rubber bullets being fired. Taken into custody following the investigation, was 19-year old Daylan Kleen, 17-year old Bryce Gehling, and 17-year old Jeremy Stone, all of Atlantic.  All three were charged with Reckless use of Fire or an Explosive Device (a Serious Misdemeanor), Unauthorized Possession of Weapons/Homemade explosive (a Class D felony), and Using Explosives with the Intent to Commit a Public Offense (a Class C felony). Kleen was booked into the Cass County Jail, while Gehling and Stone were later released to the custody of their parents, pending an appearance in juvenile court.

Chief Green says in the early 1990’s kids were blowing up mailboxes with bottle bombs comprised of common household chemicals, and the stiffer charges are intended to demonstrate that type of activity will not be tolerated again.

9AM Newscast 01-31-2013

News, Podcasts

January 31st, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Chris Parks