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Modale man found guilty in connection w/fatal Cass County crash

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A jury in Atlantic has found a Harrison County man guilty of homicide by motor vehicle. KETV in Omaha reports the verdict was handed down Thursday afternoon against 50-year old Paul Marshall, of Modale, who drove the wrong way on Interstate 80 in Cass County last summer, and whose vehicle collided head-on near Atlantic, with a vehicle driven by 31-year old University of Nebraska Soccer Coach Peter Underwood, who died at the scene of the May 16th crash.

Marshall was taken into custody after the verdict, and was being held without bond pending sentencing, which was set for June 17th. Marshall will face up to 25-years in prison. His trial began Tuesday.

Father of Council Bluffs crash victim testifies in Congress

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — The father of a Council Bluffs woman who was killed in a hit-and-run crash has addressed members of the Congress, speaking about losing his daughter and questioning the handling of her suspected killer. KMTV reports Scott Root testified before a U.S. House committee Thursday about the events following the January death of his 21-year-old daughter, Sarah Root.

Investigators say 19-year-old Eswin Mejia was in the country illegally when he was driving drunk in Omaha and crashed into Root’s car, killing her. Authorities haven’t seen Mejia since he posted bail and was released from jail in February. He’s on the Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s list of most wanted suspects.

Scott Root said his family wouldn’t stop until local and federal officials are held accountable and Mejia is caught.

Six area seniors pursuing agriculture related degrees earn $1,500 scholarships

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

In one of its last acts as the West Central Cooperative governing body, the Board of Directors has announced the recipients of the West Central Excellence in Agriculture scholarships. Last winter, West Central accepted applications for its Excellence in Agriculture scholarships from children of cooperative members who are area seniors pursuing agriculture-related post-secondary education. This year, six students have each been awarded $1,500.

The Excellence in Agriculture winners are:

* Noah Borkowski, son of Dave & Lisa Borkowski of Carroll; senior at Glidden-Ralston High School.

* Zoey Dinkla, daughter of Dallas & Romonia Dinkla of Casey; senior at Adair-Casey High School.

* Brianna Goecke, daughter of Jim & Kim Goecke of Audubon; senior at Audubon Community High School.

* Andrew Irlbeck, son of Glen & Anne Irlbeck of Templeton; senior at Kuemper Catholic High School.

* Shelby Soper, daughter of Clint & Mindy Douglas of Adair; senior at Adair-Casey High School.

* John Schultes, son of George Schultes & Connie Jessen of Exira; senior at Exira-Elk Horn Kimballton High School.

Brianna Goecke

Brianna Goecke

Zoey Dinkla

Zoey Dinkla

Shelby Soper

Shelby Soper

Andrew Irlbeck

Andrew Irlbeck

Noah Borkwoski

Noah Borkwoski

Nick Schultes

Nick Schultes

West Central’s Excellence in Agriculture program had been in place since 1994. The Landus Cooperative board of directors has not yet determined their plans for the scholarship program in the future. Landus Cooperative’s chief executive officer and West Central’s former CEO, Milan Kucerak said “These soon-to-be-graduates will play a critical role in shaping agriculture in coming decades. As a farmer-owned cooperative, we are privileged to be in a position to consult with producers who are feeding the world as well as support the educational pursuits of those who will positively influence the industry for years to come.”

Report ranks Iowa 28th for cost of college education

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A study from the Institute for Research on Higher Education at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education finds Iowa ranks 28th for the cost of college education. William Doyle, an associate professor at Vanderbilt, helped put together the College Affordability Diagnosis. He says they looked at the net price being charged to families based on their family income and compared that what families were able to pay, and the costs to attend in the cities were students attend college. He says the cost of community college figured into Iowa’s 28th place ranking.

“One of the big factors is that the net prices of community colleges are relatively high in Iowa in comparison to other states. And that’s where many undergraduate students enroll,” Doyle says. “So, having these relatively more expensive institutions where a lot of Iowans are going, hurts Iowa’s overall rankings.” The report says students would have to work 28 hours a week, on average, to cover the annual costs of attending a two-year public college full time. It says those schools are even less affordable for those earning less than 30-thousand dollars a year, as families would need to spend nearly half of their family income to pay for the costs. The Board of Regents is looking at raising tuition again at the three state universities after a couple of years of freezing tuition. Doyle says the tuition freeze sounds good, but it has to be viewed in a bigger picture.

“One thing about these tuition freezes, lots of states go through this pattern where they might lock down tuition for a couple of years and then it increases quite rapidly when some difficult economic times return,” Doyle says. “Better to have moderate predictable increases, increases kind of no more than family income, increases over time so people can make plans appropriately.” He says the state needs to provide more financial aid to students.

“Iowa has relatively low investment in need-based financial aid at its public institutions. The state has a fairly generous system for students at private institutions — but doesn’t provide as much as many other states do for students at public institutions,” Doyle says. The report says Iowa provides 39 dollars per student in need-based financial aid to those attending public institutions, compared to the national average of 474 dollars. Doyle says there’s also a large gap between the number of Hispanic and the number of white students who can afford to attend college in Iowa as the Hispanic population has grown.

“Like a lot of other states, if Iowa wants to have a more highly educated population, it’s going to have to provide more access to higher education for groups who traditionally haven’t had much access to higher education,” Doyle says. “That includes under represented groups like Hispanic students and families. And the overall education attainment of Hispanic students and families is lower than it is for say white students and families.” Doyle says Alaska is the number one school on their list for affordability.

“They way Alaska got there…institutions where most of the students go are more afforable, they are low price institutions. And also in Alaska the prices are low relative to what students and families are able to pay,” according to Doyle.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass Supervisors have a full agenda for their Friday meeting

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors have a lot on the agenda for their 8:30-a.m. meeting Friday, in Atlantic.  Among the action items, is: A review of a construction permit application for Southwest Iowa Egg; a resolution endorsing county funds for a Vision Iowa CAT grant, with removal of an ADA [Americans with Disabilities Act] accessible fishing pier from the resolution; and, Adoption of the Cass County Multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan.

The Board will also hear and act on: A request from the Trevor Frederickson Memorial Fund for improvements to the County’s portion of the Atlantic City Park; A request for funding from Cass County Tourism officials, to help pay for tourism brochures; A resolution for appointment of deputies/assistants by the County Attorney, Treasurer and Auditor; Authorizing the County Recorder to purchase equipment needed to take passport photos, and approval of the “4th amendment to the Cooperative Reimbursement Agreement” (Child Support Recovery Office), incorporating the Program budget for State Fiscal Year 2017.

The Board will also hear reports from: Cass County Tourism officials; Cass County Veterans Affairs, and County Engineer. And, if a person is available for the position, the Board will act on appointing a Grove Township Trustee to fill a vacancy term that ends Dec. 31st, 2018.

The Board of Supervisor’s meeting, as always, takes place in their Boardroom on the second floor of the Cass County Courthouse.

Storm Survey Team heading to Stanton today

News, Weather

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

There are no reports of injuries, but there’s a bit of damage across portions of southern Iowa following a round of severe weather Wednesday. Kevin Skow is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in Johnston. “At least three tornadoes we’re aware of, possibly more…generally all confined to southwest Iowa. There was also some small hail with that storm as it moved through southern Iowa,” Skow said.

Stanton Tornado damage 4-27-16 (Photo by Stanton Fire Chief)

Stanton Tornado damage 4-27-16 (Photo by Stanton Fire Chief)

The National Weather Service office in Omaha today (Thu.) is sending a storm survey team to an area east of Stanton in Montgomery County. That’s where a tornado damaged an outbuilding and vehicles. Skow says, of the three or so tornadoes, the one near Stanton was probably the most damaging. “They were generally short-lived and generally weak, probably in the neighborhood of EF-0 or EF-1 type damage,” Skow said.

(The Iowa Storm Chasing Network has posted a video of the tornado on the ground near Stanton, on its Facebook page. The link to which is here: https://www.facebook.com/IowaStormChasing/?notif_t=notify_me_page&notif_id=1461699462000718 ) or, on their YouTube page (https://youtu.be/HBf03HDyDG0)

Another tornado passed near Creston in Union County Wednesday afternoon and firefighters reported a brief tornado touchdown with no damage near Hepburn in Page County. Cool and rainy conditions are expected across Iowa through the weekend. “We’re only in April, so these temperatures — highs in the 50s and 60s — are certainly not uncommon this late in the year,” Skow said.

(Radio Iowa)

Absentee ballots may now be cast in Cass County in advance of June 7 Primary

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Cass County Auditor Dale Sunderman reports that beginning today, Thursday, April 28, a voter who chooses to vote prior to June 7, may cast a ballot at the office of the county auditor.

In Cass County the voter may go to the CASS COUNTY COURTHOUSE during the regular office hours of 8 AM and 4:30 PM, Monday thru Friday, up through the day before the election and cast a ballot.

If you have questions concerning this or other elections, contact the office of Cass County Auditor/Election Commissioner (Phone: 712-243-4570)

Atlantic School Board approves Non-Certified staff contract

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Community School District’s Board of Education, Wednesday evening, approved the tentative, 2016-17 Non-Certified staff, contract agreement. Superintendent Dr. Michael Amstein said non-certified staff include para-professionals, secretaries, bus drivers, food service workers, custodians, and anyone who is not required to be endorsed or licensed in the State.

Amstein says they settled on a total package of 3.162-percent, or, a 33-cent per hour wage increase, which amounts to about $86,000. He said the non-certified group ratified the agreement on Tuesday.

In other business, the Atlantic School Board approved the hiring of Justin Williams, as Head Freshman Baseball Coach. They also heard presentations with regard to the district’s Home/School Program and English Language Learner (ELL) Program. They also heard from Schuler Principal James Northwick and the Lindamood-Bell program coordinators, with regard to the Spring 2016 Iowa Assessments.

And, Amstein said the school board continued with discussions pertaining to the possibility of having a Special Election Sept. 13th with regard to a Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL) income surtax. He says they’ve estimated that if the PPEL surtax had been approved last year, the property tax asking could have been reduced about 62-cents per thousand dollars valuation.

Brayton man arrested in connection w/January burglary

News

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s deputies in Audubon County arrested a man Wednesday night wanted on a warrant in connection with the January 19th burglary of a residence in the 3200 block of Goldfinch Place. 26-year old David Allen Hollingsworth, of Brayton, was arrested on charges of Burglary in the 3rd and Theft in the 3rd degrees.

He was brought to the Audubon County Jail and later released after posting bond. Hollingsworth is scheduled to appear in court May 5th.

(Podcast) KJAN 8-a.m. News, 4/28/2016

News, Podcasts

April 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

More area and State news from KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

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