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Iowa State Fair will pair butter cow with Monopoly game

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Organizers of the Iowa State Fair are pairing the event’s famous butter cow sculpture with another butter piece celebrating the Monopoly board game. Officials say the accompanying piece, which changes every year, will this summer celebrate the game’s 80th anniversary.

Sarah Pratt designs the butter cow each year as well as a second piece. She is expected to feature some famous Monopoly pieces alongside the game’s main character, Rich Uncle Pennybags. Monopoly was first commercially sold in the 1930s. The property trading game has been printed in more than 37 languages.

The Iowa Star Fair is scheduled Aug. 13-23 in Des Moines.

Iowa court limits warrantless searches inside suspects’ cars


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A divided Iowa Supreme Court is concluding its term with a ruling that will require police to obtain warrants more often before searching inside suspects’ vehicles. In a 4-3 ruling, the court ruled Tuesday the Iowa Constitution generally requires officers to obtain warrants before they can search vehicles during traffic stops.

The court said a Davenport officer violated a drug suspect’s privacy rights when he searched a locked safe found in his van. The search uncovered a loaded revolver and several baggies of marijuana. The court’s majority says that evidence should be suppressed. Its new rule says warrantless searches inside vehicles are justified only when safety concerns are at issue.

Dissenting justices say the rule will be a challenge for arresting officers to implement and goes against prior precedent.

Copper stolen from power plant in Villisca


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports 1,300 pounds of #6 solid, bare copper was stolen from the Villisca Power Plant. The copper is in the form of about 30-to 40 hand coils, weighing approximately 30-pounds each. The loss was estimated at $3,000.

The theft is believed to have occurred June 22nd-and 26th. Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office at 712-623-5107, or Crimestoppers, at 1-888-434-2712.

Elk Horn man arrested for alleged sexual abuse


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Police in Atlantic report the arrest last Friday of an Elk Horn man on a sexual abuse charge. Officials say 38-year old Loren Buskirk was taken into custody on a charge Sexual Abuse in the 2nd Degree. He was booked into the Cass County Jail and held.

Authorities said also, 20-year old Bryce Baker, of Atlantic, was arrested Sunday for Public Intoxication and Interference with Official Acts. Baker was released from custody later than same day. And, 20-year old Philip Thompson, of Lewis, was arrested Sunday, for Violation of a No Contact Order. He remains held in the Cass County Jail.

Governor: Ex-Des Moines chief to lead Iowa police academy


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) – Gov. Terry Branstad is appointing former Des Moines police chief Judy Bradshaw as the new director of the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. Bradshaw has been the academy’s assistant director since retiring from the Des Moines Police Department last year. She will replace director Arlen Ciechanowski, who has decided to retire after his appointment to a four-year term wasn’t approved by the Iowa Senate.

Branstad withdrew Ciechanowski’s appointment after Democrats raised questions about his management and whether the academy had a welcoming environment for female cadets. Branstad says the 56-year-old Bradshaw has the “leadership, knowledge, temperament and communications skills” necessary to lead the academy.

Bradshaw says she looks forward to helping teach future police officers “best practices to effectively serve their communities.” Her appointment is subject to Senate confirmation next spring.

Funding pulled for vets’ adult day care in Omaha, Iowa


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – Funding has been pulled for adult day care for veterans in Omaha and western Iowa due to a $2.5 billion shortfall in the Department of Veterans of Affair’s health care budget. The Omaha World-Herald reports that the VA Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System will no longer cover adult day care and other forms of non-skilled nursing care after July 31st.

VA spokesman Will Ackerman says that officials understand that it’s an inconvenience to veterans and their families but that they must be good stewards of taxpayer dollars.  Ackerman says the VA will work with veterans’ families to ease the transition.

Smoke from Canadian wildfires clouds Iowa’s skies

News, Weather

June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowans may’ve noticed the sun was a strange color this (Tuesday) morning — and  Monday evening. That’s because of fires taking place in Canada. The afternoon sun, Monday, had a sort of golden-yellow hue and the sunset was spectacular. National Weather Service meteorologist Craig Cogil says it’s due to smoke from at least 40 wildfires in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, fires sparked by lightning.

“We’re seeing Canadian wildfires producing quite a bit of smoke and that smoke is moving southeast into the Midwestern part of the United States and causing some obscuration of the sun during the afternoon and evening hours,” Cogil says, “and also the moon during the overnight was a dusky orange.” Cogil says Iowans will likely see the sun through the smoky filter for a bit longer.

“It does look like we may continue to see this smoke down across us during the day today as we see the upper flow continue from the northwest out of Canada,” he says. If you have asthma or other breathing issues, the smoke shouldn’t bring you any trouble. “Most of the smoke is in the upper levels of the atmosphere, not really down near the surface, so it doesn’t appear so at this time,” he says.

(Radio Iowa)

Farmers encouraged to update info. on straw & hay directory

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey is encouraging Iowa hay and straw producers to register or update their listing on the Iowa Hay and Straw Directory. The directory lists Iowa producers with hay and straw for sale, as well as organizations and businesses associated with promoting and marketing quality hay and straw.IA Dept of Ag-Land Stewardship

Northey says “The directory has been a great tool for both buyers and sellers and we hope farmers will take the time to review and update their information so that it remains a valuable resource. This directory can serve as a critical link for those producing hay and those looking to buy, so we encourage Iowans to take advantage of this free directory.”

The listing is available to interested buyers throughout the nation, however only sellers from within Iowa can be included on the list. Names are gathered throughout the year with added emphasis now that hay harvest has started. Sections within the Hay and Straw Directory include “Forage for Sale,” “Forage Auctions,” “Hay Associations,” “Forage Dealers,” “Hay Grinders” and “Custom Balers.”

Farmers interested in listing should visit the Department’s website at www.IowaAgriculture.gov. An application form can be found by going to the “Bureaus” link and then selecting “Agricultural Diversification and Market Development.” Then click on “Hay & Straw Directory” on the right side of the page under “Directories.”

For those without internet access, call the Hay/Straw Hotline at 800-383-5079. The Department will fax or send a printed copy of the application to be filled out. The Department is also supporting the Iowa Crop Improvement Association’s “Iowa Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage and Mulch Certification Program.” Through this program Iowa forage and mulch producers can take advantage of many emerging market opportunities for “Certified Weed Free” products.

For more specific information on this program producers should contact the Iowa Crop Improvement Association at 515-294-6921. More information can also be found by visiting http://www.iowacrop.org/Forage_Mulch.htm.

Glenwood man arrested Monday on alcohol & disorderly conduct charges


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Police in Glenwood report the arrest on Monday of 23-year old Theodore Brayman. The Glenwood man was charged with Public intoxication and Disorderly Conduct. His bond was set at $600.

Public hearings set for Wed. evening during City Council meeting in Atlantic


June 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A couple of public hearings will take place during the City Council meeting in Atlantic, Wednesday evening. The meeting begins at 5:30-p.m. The first hearing is with regard to the Plans, Specifications and Form of Contract for the Connector Trail and Pedestrian Bridge Project. The hearing, as required by State Law, allows public input on the project for which the City has agreed to contribute $50,000 from the Local Option Sales Tax (or, LOST) Progress Fund. City Administrator John Lund has indicated the fund has grown significantly over the past year, and uses for the fund are limited. And, since the trails system in Atlantic serve as a potential launch pad for a number of economic development opportunities, the LOST fund would be an appropriate use of the money, according to Lund.

The second public hearing is with regard to the Southeast Urban Renewal Plan Amendment, as it pertains to the Ash Street Housing Development project being proposed by Boose Building Construction. The estimated value created by the development, according to Lund, is Tax Increment Finacing (TIF) amounting to slightly more than $1.02-million. Boose has requested TIF from the City to support the project, which the City’s Personnel and Finance Committee has thoroughly reviewed and recommended for passage, by the Council. The site plan was approved by the Council during their meeting on April 15th.

Following both hearings, the Council will act on Resolutions approving both matters, along with a review of the bids for the Connector Trail Project and awarding of a contract for that project. They will also act on a Resolution authorizing an Internal Advance of Funds for the Urban Renewal Project, the TIF agreement for which amounts to $80,000. Lund says setting up an internal loan simplifies the process for all parties involved, and will be made out of the General Fund. It will be repaid through revenue from the TIF district over the agreed upon terms outlined in the development agreement.