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Iowa early News Headlines: Fri., May 31st 2013

News

May 31st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

NEW HARTFORD, Iowa (AP) — Emergency management officials have told residents of New Hartford to be prepared to evacuate as water begins to run over the top of a gravel road that serves as a levee protecting the northeast Iowa community. Ridge Avenue holds back Beaver Creek on the west side of town. The 500 residents of New Hartford have been told to prepare to evacuate if the levee breaks. If it does, officials say they’ll have about 90 minutes to get everyone out.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Officials in Johnson County have ordered a mandatory evacuation of two rural neighborhoods due to high waters from the Iowa River. The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office yesterday ordered residents of Riverview Estates and the Izaak Walton League area to leave their homes. Utilities to the Riverview Estates neighborhood have been shut off.

ONAWA, Iowa (AP) — Stormy weather caused significant problems in the western Iowa city of Onawa, blowing down trees and damaging buildings. Onawa Mayor Bob Skelton told the Sioux City Journal newspaper that strong winds damaged many trees. National Weather Service meteorologist Dave Fobert says damage apparently was caused by a thunderstorm and not a tornado.

LE GRAND, Iowa (AP) — Officials have lifted a boil advisory issued on Tuesday for the small city of Le Grand in central Iowa. The state Department of Natural Resources says test results yesterday of water samples taken earlier in the week showed the water was safe to drink.

Preliminary storm damage report – Atlantic

News, Weather

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The National Weather Service says thunderstorms that passed through Atlantic Thursday night caused some tree damage and produced some pea-sized hail. The Cass County Emergency Management Agency told the Weather Service winds estimated at 45-miles per hour caused a 5-inch diameter tree limb to break in Atlantic at around 9:30-p.m.   Pea-sized hail was observed here at the KJAN Studios as well, at around that same time.

There were no other, immediate reports of damage in Atlantic. In Montgomery County, Emergency Management officials said G Ave between Hwy 34 and Old Hwy 34 was closed for a few hours late Thursday evening, due to a power line falling over the roadway west of Red Oak. The road was re-opened at around 11:15-p.m.

2 arrests in Montgomery County

News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Two people were arrested Thursday in Montgomery County. Sheriff’s officials say 50-year old Bryan David Messerly, of Ft. Dodge was arrested late Thursday morning on drug charges, following a traffic stop on Highway 34 about 5-miles west of Red Oak. Messerly was charged with Possession of Marijuana with the intent to deliver, and Possession of Methamphetamine and Heroine/3rd offense. He was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on $5,000 bond.

And early Wednesday afternoon, 21-year old Kiley Brian Caron, of Red Oak, was arrested on reckless driving and criminal mischief in the 2nd degree charges, following a traffic accident with a house on 150th Street in rural Red Oak. Officials say Caron was found in the east ditch of Highway 48 near 160th Street, at around 1:50-p.m. Caron was being held in the jail on $5,000 bond.

(Used during 5-p.m.  news)

Vandalism reported in Montgomery County

News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Montgomery County are asking for the public’s help in identifying the person or persons responsible for an incident of vandalism, in Villisca. Authorities say at around 12:20-p.m. Thursday, they received a report about two wooden picnic tables that had several boards broken. One of the tables was flipped over. The incident happened in the shelter area of the Enarson Elementary School Park, in Villisca. It occurred sometime between 4-p.m. Wednesday and 6-a.m. Thursday. If you have any information about the crime, call Montgomery County Crimestoppers at 1-800-432-1001.

(Used 5-pm News, 5/30/13)

USDA Rural Development Loan & Grant Programs Assist Rural Homeowners with Needed Home Repairs

News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s long winter and recent spring rains can really take a toll on homes, especially older ones with aging roofs, siding or windows. If your house is in need of essential repairs this spring USDA Rural Development has low-interest loans and grants available to help eligible families make needed improvements. Loans have a fixed interest rate as low as one percent and typically may be repaid over a term of 20 years. An abundant amount of loan funds is available to assist rural Iowans.

Grants are available to help applicants who are 62 or older, and who cannot repay a loan, remove health and safety hazards or to make the home accessible for a disabled family member. Bill Menner, USDA Rural Development State Director in Iowa, said the loans and grants help eligible families make needed repairs that they otherwise couldn’t afford.  Through this program a family can get a $3,000 loan that has a monthly payment as low as $13.80.

Examples of eligible projects include repair/replacement of storm doors, windows, steps, furnaces, water heaters or roofs. Funds can also be used for insulation, electrical, plumbing, septic and water systems, and to provide accessibility for persons with disabilities. Homes repaired with these funds must be located in communities of less than 20,000 people or in rural areas.

To be eligible for a repair loan, the family applying must own and live in the home to be repaired, lack personal resources to pay for needed repairs, have a good credit history, limited assets and have repayment ability. To qualify for assistance household income must fall under income limits for the county and household size. For most counties, a one-person household must have an adjusted income of $20,950 or less, and a two-person household must have an adjusted income of $23,950 or less. Limits increase for larger household sizes.

Along with loans and grants to repair homes, USDA Rural Development has two low-interest, no-down-payment loan programs to help eligible families purchase new homes. In most cases a family of four with an adjusted annual income of up to $74,050 may qualify for the agency’s guaranteed home loan program. If that same family of four’s adjusted annual income is less than $47,850 they may also qualify for a direct loan from the agency. These income limits increase in communities located near metro areas.

Homes can be existing or new construction. Existing homes must be structurally sound. Also, the property cannot have any income-producing outbuildings. Residents in Adams, Audubon, Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie, Shelby and Taylor Counties are served by the USDA Rural Development office in Atlantic. For more information please call (712) 243-2107 ext. 4 or visit www.rurdev.usda.gov/ia.

(Press Release)

Dwight Lamb, Jensen & Bugge in Concert

News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The well-known Danish traditional musicians Jensen & Bugge return to the Danish Windmill stage on Wednesday, June 12th, at 7-p.m. Mette Jensen and Kristian Bugge come from South of Vejle, Denmark and they will be performing with master button box accordion player Dwight Lamb of Onawa, Iowa.

It will be a lively evening of long lost Danish Folk Music that Dwight Lamb had learned from his grandfather who had immigrated to the US in the late 1800’s and his great grandfather. Dwight plays traditional Danish music on his button accordion that he learned from his grandfather who emigrated from Denmark more than a hundred years ago.  Jensen & Bugge are enthusiastic and experienced dance musicians and have played at numerous dances, workshops and concerts in Denmark, Scandinavia and the rest of the world.  In 2011 their 10th Anniversary was celebrated with a number of concerts in Denmark and abroad and by several CD releases.

The 165 year old Danish Windmill in Elk Horn, Iowa, is located 6 miles North off I-80, exit 54 in the Danish community of Elk Horn Iowa. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair and dress for the weather. A Danish Hot Dog meal will be for sale at the concert and a free will donation will be taken for the concert to help offset the costs.

(Press Release)

Storm damages trees, buildings in Onawa

News, Weather

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

ONAWA, Iowa (AP) — Stormy weather caused significant problems in the western Iowa city of Onawa, blowing down trees and damaging buildings. Onawa Mayor Bob Skelton told the Sioux City Journal that strong winds damaged many trees. Awnings also were ripped off, windows broken, a stoplight was knocked down and three street lights were damaged.

A wind gust also caused the front of a car dealership to collapse, sending concrete blocks onto two late-model vehicles. Knoepfler Chevrolet sales associate Garry Ellison says the gust lasted about 15 seconds. No one was injured in the dealership.

Police say most damage was confined to a nine-block area in the northwest part of town. National Weather Service meteorologist Dave Fobert says damage apparently was caused by a thunderstorm and not a tornado.

Rain erases nearly all signs of drought in Iowa

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The recent wet weather has converted last year’s drought in Iowa to flooding across much of the state. The latest U.S. Drought Monitor report released Thursday says only about 2 percent of Iowa was experiencing moderate drought this week and 17 percent of the state was abnormally dry. But the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln uses data from Tuesday morning for its weekly updates.

Several rounds of storms have dumped rain on Iowa since then, so the remaining dryness in northwest Iowa may have already been eliminated. The restored soil moisture should help Iowa farmers if their crops haven’t been affected by this week’s flooding.

New app lets crime victims monitor offenders

News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa crime victims can keep tabs on jail and prison inmates using a new mobile app.  The state Attorney General’s office says Thursday the free VINEMobile app will allow crime victims and the public to anonymously monitor inmates in Iowa correctional facilities and most county jails. They can also sign up for notifications when inmates’ custody status changes due to transfer or release.
 
Attorney General Tom Miller says in a statement that this tool will help crime victims because they can more easily get information about criminals.  The app was developed by Appriss Inc. and is available for Android and Apple devices. It is a mobile version of IowaVINE, a victim notification service.

Iowa ag secretary says 2013 yields will be lower, due to late planting

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s secretary of agriculture says some Iowa farmers face tough decisions because of the wet weather. Secretary Bill Northey says some farmers may have to shift to seeding soybeans in fields they had planned to plant with corn this year. “We still have 15 percent of the corn to be planted out there for the first time and, really, almost none of that’s going to get planted ’til June. I’m sure some of it may not even get planted just because some rivers are out of their banks. In other places it’s going to be hard to get planted,” We have 60 percent of the soybeans yet to be planted and normally that should be close to being done or at least within sight of being done and now we’re hardly within sight of getting that in the ground.” 

In addition, farmers may have to replant fields that have been underwater for a while. “Way back in 1993 we had issues where the crop actually, essentially drowned out just in really soggy soil. Normally that doesn’t happen inIowa. We get some dry weather between our rains and the crop may struggle through some saturated soils, but it grows,” Northey says. “We’re at a point where we have to worry a little bit about making sure that soil dries out between these rains so that bean plant and that corn plant can stay healthy and keep growing.” 

Farmers are looking for warm, windy days in the forecast. Northeys says “We don’t need 40 mile an hour winds, but we certainly could use 15-20 mile an hour breezes on those warm days to be able to get some of that drying done.” Seed treatments can help young plants survive wet conditions. Northey says June 10th is a sort of cut-off date for planting corn in Iowa and farmers can plant soybeans as late as the first week of July, but the shortened growing season means a shorter crop. Northey farms near Spirit Lake and he still has some planting to do in his fields.

According to the Iowa Farm Bureau, planting progress is slower than it was in the dramatic flood year of 1993.

(Radio Iowa)