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Diapers on cows? Sen. Grassley blasts plans to cut methane gas emissions

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Some climate change activists blame at least part of the planet’s weather problems on methane gas emissions from livestock. The Obama administration is ordering the U-S-D-A and the E-P-A to create a bio-gas roadmap to find ways to reduce those emissions. Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says the roadmap is a questionable notion and he’s writing a letter to Gina McCarthy, the head of the E-P-A.  “The roadmap is intended to reduce dairy sector greenhouse gas emissions through voluntary strategies by 25% by 2020,” Grassley says. “My questions for Administrator McCarthy center on the impact the plan has on the average U.S. dairy farms.”

Grassley, a Republican, says much of our country’s midsection was populated by some 600-million buffalo when pioneers first began settling in the region and there wasn’t a greenhouse gas problem back then. “You’ve gotta’ have a historical approach,” Grassley says. “Are you going to put diapers on cows? I don’t think so. I don’t think you’re going to shut down cows from producing methane gas. That’s the way God made ‘em.” The plan calls on livestock producers to make changes that would reduce greenhouse gas emissions voluntarily, but Grassley remains skeptical of the motives.

“It’s hard to forget only a couple of years ago, this administration was trying to push Cap & Trade through Congress,” Grassley says. “It seems only right to be suspicious of the administration’s intentions. All you’ve got to do is look at fugitive dust as another example.” Dust can be stirred up during routine farming and that so-called “fugitive dust” was labeled by some as air pollution responsible for a host of negative impacts on human health, eroding the soil, strangling plants and causing reduced visibility that leads to traffic accidents.

(Radio Iowa)

Atlantic receives another Tree City USA Award

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The City of Atlantic has received yet another Tree City USA award. It’s the 19th consecutive year Atlantic has qualified for the award. A new flag, and a certificate designating the City as being tree friendly, was presented by Dolly Bergman and members of the local “Tree’s Forever” committee tasked with making sure the City qualifies for the award and does its part to keep Atlantic green.IMG_20140416_173410_468

She said one of the hardest requirements is keeping track of how much the City actually spends on its forestry, or tree-care budget, which must be at least $2 per capita. Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring helped with that. And, information provided by Trees Forever also helped the City meet the requirement. The City’s expenditures for trees and related services amounted to $14,822 in 2013.

The Tree City USA flag will be hung on the pole located in the Atlantic City Park, under a new American flag which replaces a storm-tattered American flag. Bergman says this year, the Tree’s Forever group will be working with Atlantic 4th graders on Friday, April 25th (The official Iowa “Arbor Day”), to plant a tree on the grounds of Schuler Elementary School. In addition, each of the 4th graders will receive a tiny Norway Spruce tree they can take home, plant and watch grow.

7AM Newscast 04-17-2014

News, Podcasts

April 17th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Play

Atlantic Chamber Director resigns; County-wide animal shelter discussed

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce’ Executive Director has resigned. City Administrator Doug Harris made that announcement during Wednesday evening’s meeting of the Atlantic City Council. Megan Roberts, who has served in the position since August 2012, is leaving to take a job with a local insurance agency. Her resignation is effective May 1st. IMG_20140416_173253_077 

In other business, the City may once again be looking becoming a County-wide pet shelter. Doug Harris said Councilman Randy Fischer, from Marne, approached him with regard to the possibility of Atlantic’s shelter accepting a couple of Marne’s stray cats and dogs. Harris said about 4-to 6-years ago there was some discussion about creating a County-wide shelter, with Atlantic as the host.

Harris said it makes sense to have a shelter for stray animals since several communities are having problems with unwanted or stray animals being dumped-off in other communities or the rural areas. He said “The economies of scales of expanding our facility and handling the whole county would make sense…to be paid for as a County levy.” He said it would be up to the Atlantic City Council to establish a policy.

Harris said there are times when Atlantic’s facility can handle additional animals, but other times when it is at capacity. Mayor Dave Jones said the City could start sending the County a bill for that service, just as it does for the libraries, or, it could simply shut the shelter down. Doug Harris said he and others could sit down with other City leaders from around the County and see if there is an interest in a County-wide shelter and if or how they should proceed from there. The City may also once again approach the Board of Supervisors and hold discussions on the matter.

In his report to the Council, Mayor Dave Jones reminded citizens of the Ordinance prohibiting yard sale and other such signs on utility poles and public right-of-ways. He also reminded citizens to mow their lawns when the grass gets to be 3 or 4 inches tall. The City, as previously mentioned, plans on being more aggressive this year in getting after property owners whose grass grows unsightly.

And, Councilman Dana Halder asked if there is anyone who would like to donate a good, used, working wheel chair to the Atlantic Public Library, they would appreciate it, since the one they had was vandalized by a couple of youth.

Rollover accident southwest of Atlantic this morning

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

One person was injured during a single-vehicle accident near Atlantic, just before 5:30 this (Thursday) morning. Cass County Chief Deputy Sheriff John Westering told KJAN News the Cass County 9-1-1 Center received a call at 5:27-a.m. about three-miles south of Atlantic, just north of Lansing Road. Upon arrival, there was a 2001 Chevy Impala on its top in the east ditch. Westering said the driver of the car apparently swerved or took some sort of evasive action, causing him to lose control. The southbound vehicle crossed the road and entered the east ditch before rolling onto its top. The male driver suffered what were described as “non-life threatening” injuries. He was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital for treatment.

The driver of the vehicle was the only occupant of the car. His name is different from that of the vehicle’s registered owner, and as such, his name has not yet been released. The accident remains under investigation.

Minor injuries during accident in Red Oak Wed. afternoon

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities say a Red Oak woman suffered  minor injuries during a collision  Wednesday afternoon at the intersection of North 8th Street and East Senate Avenue, in Red Oak. 73-year old Carroll Gary hit her head when her 2014 KIA Optima was hit by a 1997 Dodge pickup. Gary was checked out by Red Oak Rescue personnel, but refused transport to the hospital. The driver of the pickup, 82-year old Delaine Lundgren, of Red Oak, was cited for Failure to stop at a Stop sign.

Officials say Lundgren’s truck was traveling east on East Senate at around 2-p.m. Wednesday, and had stopped at the stop sign with North 8th Street, but then pulled away from the sign and hit Gary’s car on the driver’s side door. The accident happened as her car turned off of Highway 34 onto North 8th Street, headed northbound and approached the intersection with East Senate.

Damage from the collision amounted to $6,000.

NE woman arrested this morning in Pott. County on a Montgomery Co. warrant

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County say an Omaha woman was arrested early this (Thursday) morning in Pottawattamie County on a valid Montgomery County warrant. 41-year old Angela D. Franks was arrested at around 2:40-a.m. by Pottawattamie County authorities following a traffic stop. Franks, who was wanted on a warrant for Contempt of Court/Failure to Pay Child Support, was brought to the Pottawattamie-Montgomery County line and transported by deputies in Montgomery County to the Law Enforcement Center, where she was being held on $1,000 cash bond.

Experts say 18-year old who killed an Atlantic boy is competent to stand trial

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Two mental health professionals who examined a teenager charged with killing his 5-year-old foster brother testified Wednesday that, although the youth is emotionally immature, they think he is competent to stand trial. The Omaha World-Herald reports it remains to be seen, however, whether 18-year old Cody Metzker-Madsen stands trial on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of Dominic Elkins, from Atlantic.

Metzker-Madsen’s attorney questioned a psychologist and a psychiatrist, during a hearing at the Harrison County Courthouse. Both acknowledged that the teen has extensive problems. Andersen said Metzker-Madsen exhibits symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder and fetal-alcohol syndrome. Andersen said Metzker-Madsen’s mother, used methamphetamine while pregnant with him.

District Court Judge Kathleen Kilnoski will decide whether Metzker-Madsen stands trial. The judge did not say when she would issue her decision.Authorities believe that Metzker-Madsen, who was 17 at the time, killed Dominic as the two boys played outdoors Aug. 31st at the rural home of their foster parents north of Logan, where they were staying. The child’s body was found in a wooded ravine. An autopsy by the state medical examiner determined that Dominic died as a result of blunt-force head injuries and drowning.

Metzker-Madsen has pleaded not guilty and is being held at the Harrison County Jail in Logan.

Iowa News Headlines: Thu., April 17th 2014

News

April 17th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Governor Terry Branstad says Iowa has agreed to a federal recommendation that will allow thousands of residents to hang onto health insurance policies that don’t meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Branstad and Iowa Insurance Commissioner Nick Gerhart announced yesterday that the state would grant the extension of plans through 2016.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Elections officials will continue to bar felons from voting despite an Iowa Supreme Court ruling that suggests not all of them have lost their voting rights. Three justices ruled Tuesday that only some felonies are considered “infamous crimes” under the Iowa Constitution that bar individuals from voting or holding office. A spokesman for Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz said Wednesday the office will continue to treat all felons as being disenfranchised unless their rights have been restored by Governor Terry Branstad.

FORT MADISON, Iowa (AP) — The Fort Madison City Council has decided that golf carts aren’t suitable for city streets. The Burlington Hawk Eye reports the council voted 5 to 2 Tuesday night against an ordinance that would have allowed the carts on streets in the southeast Iowa city.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say they have arrested four women in connection to possible child sex abuse and pornography at a Davenport trailer park. The Scott County Sheriff’s Office says the women were taken into custody yesterday. The Quad City Times reports they are all charged with felony counts of child endangerment.

4 men seeking job as Council Bluffs police chief

News

April 16th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — Four men are vying to become the next police chief in Council Bluffs. Mayor Matt Walsh will choose the next chief, who will replace Ralph O’Donnell, who retired in March.

Walsh tells the Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil he wants to hire a chief who will have the respect of his officers, a good understanding of crime fighting and strength as a communicator. The four people competing for the position are Fremont, Neb., Police Chief Jeffrey Elliott; John Farmer, former police chief in Forrest City, Ark., and a former Omaha police lieutenant; and Terry LeMaster and Scott Milner, both captains with the Council Bluffs police.

Walsh says he hopes to make a decision by mid-May and to have the new chief in place by June.