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Weekend arrests in Montgomery County


July 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Montgomery County report two arrests over the weekend. At around 12:30-a.m, Sunday, 52-year old David Lawrence Howe, of Red Oak, was arrested for Public Intoxication, following an incident at 1st and Hammond Streets, in Red Oak. Howe was being held in the Montgomery County jail on $300 bond.

And, at around 4:30-a.m. Saturday, deputies in Montgomery County, assisted by Red Oak Police, arrested 20-year old Dillon Michael Johnson, of West Des Moines, on a charge of OWI/1st offense. His arrest was the result of an incident in the 1900 block of 207th Street, east of Red Oak. Johnson was being held in the Montgomery County jail on $1,000 bond.

Iowa early News Headlines: Mon., July 14th 2014


July 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa State Patrol says a man and woman from Fort Dodge were killed when a tree fell and hit their all-terrain vehicle. The incident happened yesterday afternoon in Webster County. Authorities say 21-year-old Jordan Ulicki and 20-year-old Sadie Rae Foreman were pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation is ongoing.

AKRON, Iowa (AP) — Autopsies have been completed on a northwest Iowa couple found dead in their home last week, but officials aren’t releasing many details. Eighty-three-year-old Don Neunaber and 80-year-old Esther Neunaber were found dead in their home last Wednesday. The couple’s 44-year-old son has been detained in Wisconsin as a material witness, but hasn’t been charged.

EVANSDALE, Iowa (AP) — Family members of two Iowa cousins whose bodies were found months after their disappearance say they’re trying to keep their own lives on track while hoping for an arrest in the case. Drew Collins says he and his wife are working to move forward as a family, but it’s still difficult. Their 8-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, and 10-year-old Lyric Cook disappeared in July 2012. Their bodies were found months later in a rural area.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Lance Armstrong is again planning to join the 418-mile bicycle ride across Iowa later this month. The Des Moines Register reports Armstrong plans to participate in his sixth RAGBRAI and even work as a guest bartender on Saturday in Rock Valley. Up to 10,000 riders are expected to take part in the bike ride that begins next Sunday.

Gardening field days set – 1st one July 21st near Lewis

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

If you’ve always wanted to start a garden, or want to find out about new plants and ideas for your garden, a series of Home Garden Fields Days planned across the state can help you out. Iowa State University extension horticulturist, Cindy Haynes, says the field days this year are focusing on new things. “One of the themes for this year’s gardens are the purple vegetables. So we have a lot of vegetables that you wouldn’t think of as being purple,” Haynes says. “There are purple carrots, purple tomatoes, purple beans. Some of those things that add a different color to it, so kids like it, or everyone wants to try it.” The purple color can in some cases add something to the traditional vegetable. Haynes says in carrots for instance, it adds vitamins.

“It’s not the beta carotene — the orange that you have in a carrot — but there is a carrot out there called purple haze that has a purple outer skin and the orange on the inside, so you can get the advantages of both,” Haynes says. “And it tastes just like a normal carrot, so it really doesn’t taste any different, it’s just a new color to put on your plate.” They will also show off some sun-loving impatiens. “Everyone thinks about impatiens for the shade, but there are some New Guinea hybrid impatiens that will tolerate the sun. And they are resistant to downy mildew — which is a problem we are seeing in some of our shade-loving impatiens,” Haynes says.

Other items on display include compact zinnias and new annual flowers. “We’ll kind of tour them around the different gardens — the same garden at six different locations — and we’ll pull things out of the ground. I’ll pass things around, and some might want to take a few things home. We’ll sample a few things from the garden as well,” Haynes explains. Haynes says more and more people are turning to gardening to grow their own food and the field days offer help to make those efforts a success.

“It’s just about getting people to experience as much of what we have out there as possible,” according to Haynes. “And we talk about the things that did well at all of the gardens, and the things that didn’t do so well so they can write on their little list ‘try this new variety’ or ‘don’t try this’ because it didn’t work out.” Haynes says people are learning you don’t have to live out in the country to have a garden. You can use all different kinds of spaces. “A lot of these things you could put into a small space, you could put into containers. You could even do a square-foot garden. With myself and some of the other I-S-U staff being there, we can answer some of these questions and help you garden better,” Haynes says.

The first demonstration is July 21st at 6:30 at the Armstrong Research and Demonstration Farm near Lewis in southwest Iowa. The remaining field days will be: July 23, 6 p-m at the, Horticulture Research Station three miles north of Ames on Highway 69; August 5th at 6:30 p-m at the Muscatine Island Research and Demonstration Farm, 111 North St, Fruitland; August 6th, 6 p-m at the Northern Research and Demonstration Farm, 310 S. Main Street, Kanawha; August 9th at 4 p-m at the Northeast Research and Demonstration Farm, 3321 290th St near Nashua.

For more information go to the I-S-U Extension Department website.

Democrats scour records for provocative comments


July 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Democratic Party researchers are scrubbing the past and current comments of Republican U.S. Senate candidates in hopes of finding rhetoric that might spook moderate or independent voters.

Democrats hope that controversial remarks by Republican candidates will help counter the upper hand the GOP has gained in many states, including many Midwestern states. Provocative comments about rape and abortion by Republican Senate candidates in Indiana and Missouri undermined their campaigns in 2012.

The best Democrats have come up with this year is in Iowa’s Senate campaign. They have called attention to Republican candidate Joni Ernst’s professed belief in a United Nations’ threat to American property rights. But there is no indication the issue has affected the closely contested race.

2 injuries reported at Lake Anita


July 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Anita and Wiota Fire and Rescue personnel were called to Lake Anita State Park Sunday evening following a report of an accident with two injured. The collision occurred near the Park Ranger’s house, and was reported at 6:47-p.m.

No other details are currently available.

EHK School Board to hold its final meeting, Monday


July 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Members of the Elk Horn/Kimballton Board of Education will hold their final, regular Board meeting Monday beginning at 5-p.m., at the High School in Elk Horn, with the newly formed Exira-EHK Community School District School Board to meet about a half-an-hour later. Both meetings will be held in the Family and Consumer Science Room. The districts’ merger became official July 1st, with the official name as the Exira-Elk Horn-Kimballton Community School District. Superintendent Dean Schnoes says the two districts came together in order to provide a continued educational program for their students, after having had a Whole Grade Sharing agreement for the past three years. The voter approved merger means patrons in both districts will see a reduction in their property taxes over the next three-years.

During the EHK Board meeting, the Board will recognize members and others who have been instrumental in the reorganization process and other matters. Action items on their agenda include approval of: A Resolution of Execution of Quit Claim Deed; Delivery of Quit Claim Deed; A Resolution to merge Elk Horn-Kimballton’s assets, liabilities and equity, to the new district, and, approve the closing of bank accounts with the Shelby County State Bank and Landmans Bank.

During the Exira-EHK Board meeting, the Board will act on approving: A second reading of Board Policies, series 100-through 900; A Resolution affirming Reorganization and Merger of assets and liabilities of the new district; The appointment of Marie Larson as Board Treasurer, and Tami Jacobsen as Board Secretary.


Governors group skirts ‘radioactive’ Common Core


July 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Facing opposition from staunch conservatives, the Common Core education standards designed to improve schools and student competitiveness are being modified by some Republican governors. They cite concern about the federal government’s role in the classroom.

The educational standards were not on the formal agenda during a three-day meeting of the National Governors Association in Nashville, but were discussed along the sidelines of the meeting.
Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad says the words, “Common Core,” have become “radioactive,” echoing a sentiment from tea party leaders who say the education plan amounts to a federal takeover of local education.

Governors in Indiana, South Carolina and Oklahoma have signed legislation to repeal the standards while Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is taking steps to block the use of tests tied to the standards.

Construction may interfere with I-29 commute Sun. night through Tue. morning


July 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Motorists who travel Interstate 29 between Highway 92 and Council Bluffs will want to plan an alternate route early this week. The Iowa Department of Transportation says the southbound lanes of I-29 between Exit 37 for U-S Highway 92, and Exit 4 for I-80 and Council Bluffs, will be closed for construction beginning today (Sunday) at 7-p.m., through 5-a.m. Monday.

Monday night at 7, the northbound lanes of I-29 in those same locations will be closed due to construction, until 5-a.m. Tuesday. Work on the highway is part of the DOT’s project to improve Interstates 80, 29 and 480 around Council Bluffs.

For more information, go to www.councilbluffsinterstate.iowadot.gov.

Teens arrested on alcohol charges Saturday night


July 13th, 2014 by Chris Parks

Two Red Oak teens were arrested late Saturday night on alcohol-related charges. According to Red Oak Police, 16-year old Heath Robert Woods was arrested for an OWI .02 (point-oh-two) violation, and possession of open container of alcohol. And 16-year old Nicholas James Terry was arrested for possessing an open container of alcohol. The teens were taken into custody in the vicinity of 4th and Senate Streets, in Red Oak, at around 11:30-p.m. They were subsequently released to the custody of their parents.

Red Oak woman fired for mishandling more than $2,700 in client funds


July 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

An investigation by the Des Moines Sunday Register reveals a Red Oak woman who served as a supervisor for a charity providing services to disabled adults, was fired from her job after mishandling more than $2,700 in funds belonging to at least nine clients. State records show that until late last year 33-year old Jennifer Koppa, of Red Oak, was employed by Nishna Productions, a Shenandoah charity that provides a wide variety of service to disabled Iowans.

As a team leader, Koppa oversaw operations at four separate homes for people with disabilities, supervised the staff, and had access to the checking accounts of nine clients. Last November, Nishna officials learned that the Internet service had been shut off in one of the homes where clients were living, and some utility bills appeared to have been unpaid.

Agency officials examined their expenses and concluded that Koppa, who was supposed to write checks from clients’ accounts directly to their landlords and to various utilities, had instead written checks from those accounts to the clients themselves — a process that converted those checks into cash, which Koppa could access. In another instance, Koppa wrote checks totaling $1,400 to pay for the utilities of some clients, but the utility bill was $945.

When confronted by her superiors at Nishna Productions, Koppa immediately stopped reporting for work and then stopped responding to phone calls and emails. Ultimately, the agency could not account for $2,730 of client funds, so it reimbursed all of the clients, fired Koppa and reported the matter to state and county authorities.

When Koppa did not appear at the unemployment hearing, an Administrative Law Judge ruled against her with regard to her claim of benefits and ordered that she repay $1,930 in benefits she had already collected. The Register’s investigation revealed eight other Iowans were recently fired from their positions at various locations around the state, and were denied unemployment benefits or have their cases pending in court.