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NE man arrested Friday night in Fremont County on drug-related warrant

News

January 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Fremont County Sheriff Kevin Aistrope reports a Nebraska man was arrested late Friday night on a valid Fremont County warrant. 45-year old David Balfour, of Nebraska City, NE, was taken into custody at around 9-p.m. on charges that include three counts of Possession of a Controlled Substance/Methamphetamine – 3rd offense, Conspiracy to Commit a Felony, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and on two counts of Felony Contraband.

Balfour was transported to the Fremont County Law Enforcement Center, where he was being held on $27,300 bond.

Exira-EHK Special School Board meeting Mon. night

News

January 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Members of the Exira-Elk Horn Kimballton School District’s Board of Education will meet in a Special Session that begins 7-p.m. Monday (1/25), in the Conference Room at the Elk Horn High School. Shortly after opening their session, the Board will move into a Closed Session for the purpose of interviewing a candidate or candidates for School District Superintendent/Principal.

Afterward, they will move out of Closed Session and adjourn for the evening. No action is expected to be taken prior to the conclusion of the session. A decision on hiring is expected to take place sometime in early February.

In December, the School Board agreed to establish a committee to review applications and set-up interviews during the first few weeks of January for the position, which is being left open due to the planned retirement at the end of this school year, of current Superintendent Dean Schnoes.

CCHS Remodeling Project Begins

News

January 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A nine-month remodeling project is officially underway at Cass County Health System (CCHS), in Atlantic. CCHS CEO Todd Hudspeth said Friday, “Our number one goal is to make improvements that benefit our patients. The three phases of remodeling truly center around what’s best for patients and their families.”

The first phase of the remodeling project involves merging Admissions, Patient Accounts and Health Information Management into a single department.CCHS Previously, Cass County Memorial Hospital (CCMH) and Atlantic Medical Center (AMC) maintained separate departments for these three areas. Now, these departments have all been merged, and the staff is cross-trained to serve both clinic and hospital patients.

Hudspeth says “This merger of clinic and hospital support departments allows us to serve our patients more efficiently. Wait times should be reduced, we’ll be better able to cover any staff shortages, and it’s less confusing for patients and families, too.” The former hospital admissions and business office will house the combined Patient Accounts and Health Information Management departments. New, private hospital admissions offices will be constructed adjacent to AMC.

The second phase of the project will be to remodel the former Health Information Management Department space into an additional medical suite for Atlantic Medical Center. The final phase will be expanding Southwest Iowa Surgery by adding office and exam room space for Dr. Edward Fisher, orthopedic surgeon and Dr. Roger Drown, foot and ankle surgeon. Both physicians are currently working out of the CCMH Outpatient Clinic until space is available in Southwest Iowa Surgery this fall.

Please Note:

• Calls to both the Atlantic Medical Center (243-2850) and Cass County Memorial Hospital (243-3250) are now answered as “Cass County Health System.” Staff is cross-trained to be able to direct your call as needed.
• Hospital Admissions is temporarily located in the atrium, behind the staircase, until the new Admissions area is constructed this summer.
• All billing, insurance, and medical records questions are being handled at the Atlantic Medical Center.

Iowa News Headlines: Sat., Jan. 23rd 2016

News

January 23rd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A judge has declined to halt Iowa’s efforts to turn over management of its Medicaid program to private insurers. Aetna Better Health and Meridian Health Plan sued seeking to halt the transition to managed care which is now expected to begin in March.

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is out with his first attack ad aimed at rival Ted Cruz. The ad paints the Texas senator as an inconsistent politician who once supported allowing the millions of people living in the country illegally to remain. Cruz responded on ABC by describing Trump’s position as akin to amnesty.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa City man who has been charged with using a plastic gun to rob a bank now faces charges of calling in a bomb threat to a school on the same day. The Press Citizen reports 30-year-old Clifton Brinkmeyer was taken into custody Tuesday morning after a bank robbery that occurred about 20 minutes after a bomb threat was phoned in at West High School.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A man whose second-degree murder conviction was thrown out by the state appeals court must face a new trial in the case in which a partying crowd beat a Des Moines man to death in a downtown parking lot in 2013. The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday ruled that 20-year-old Kent Tyler the Third must be retried for the death of 40-year-old Richard Daughenbaugh.

Clarinda man arrested on multiple probation warrants

News

January 22nd, 2016 by Jim Field

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest of 20-year-old Steven Whitt of Clarinda on a valid Montgomery County Bench Warrant for Violation of Probation on Friday.  At approximately 2:09pm deputies arrested Whitt and took him to the Montgomery County Law Enforcement Center and held on $10,000 bond.  Whitt was also arrested on a Page County Bench Warrant for Violation of Probation and is being held on $5,000 bond for Page County.

Economist on the markets: “This is not a time to be buying or selling”

News

January 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Some analysts say spiraling gasoline prices are causing significant instability in stock markets, agricultural commodities markets and elsewhere. In a survey of bank C-E-Os in Iowa and nine other Midwestern states, Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says pessimism is contagious. “With grain prices down, with beef prices down, pork prices down, it’s spilling over into the broader economy,” Goss says. “Agricultural equipment sales are down to a record low level. We’ve got farmland prices continuing to decline.”

While Iowa is the nation’s top ethanol producer, falling prices for grain and fuel are impacting the entire region’s ethanol industry. About one-fifth of the bank CEOs surveyed reported ethanol plants in their area had reduced production. “It’s not good out there,” Goss says. “With the global economic slowdown, our trading partners are buying less and less of our agricultural products.” The rollercoaster stock market leaves traders with no idea what to expect after huge drops, especially following the shake-up in China’s economy.

“The market was over-priced to begin with and now profits have weakened and we’ve got a Federal Reserve that’s raising rates,” Goss says. “This is not a time to be buying or selling, like the old saying, don’t try to catch a falling knife.” In the January numbers, Creighton’s Rural Mainstreet Index fell for the fifth straight month and is now at the lowest level since August of 2009.

(Radio Iowa)

Man pleads guilty in case of 2 southern Iowa killings

News

January 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

CRESTON, Iowa (AP) — A man representing himself in court has pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree murder in the December killings of two people in southern Iowa. Union County Attorney Tim Kenyon says 37-year-old Jerry Dillinger represented himself in court Friday and pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree murder in the killings of Dillinger’s former sister-in-law, Loretta Dillinger, and another person, whom Dillinger identified as Michael Robinson.

Loretta Dillinger’s body was found Dec. 2 in a farm pond near Lorimor. A second body was found near a house in Thayer. The identity of that body hadn’t been confirmed by DNA testing, but Dillinger said in court it was Robinson, who was in a relationship with a Dillinger family member.

Dillinger asked to be sentenced immediately and received two consecutive life terms.

East Nish & West Nishnabotna Rivers to benefit from flood reduction & water quality funds

News

January 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa has received a nearly $97 million federal grant to tackle the state’s water quality and flood challenges. Gov. Terry Branstad, along with state and local leaders, announced Friday that the state was awarded the money from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in order to help speed up flood reduction and water quality efforts in Iowa’s key watersheds over the next five years.

Among the identified flood reduction and targeted water quality efforts, is the East Nishnabotna and West Nishnabotna Rivers. Iowa is among 13 states and cities to receive the award, which is a part of the Natural Disaster Resilience Competition. The state was awarded the fourth-largest grant of any applicant.

Dispute over ‘grain leg’ near Carroll airport headed to court

Ag/Outdoor, News

January 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Carroll Airport Commission is going to court to try to resolve a long-running dispute with a local farmer. Airport officials say the grain handling tower Loren Danner built on his farm south of the Carroll airport is a flight hazard. It’s called a “grain leg” and it’s a permanent, upright tower that funnels corn and soybeans into a bin. Commission member Greg Siemann said “We were not notified and were not aware of its planned construction or construction until after the grain leg was fully constructed,” Siemann says. “That was done in a matter of days.”

The lack of notification is a violation of local ordinances, according to Siemann. Kevin Wittrock, who is also a member of the Carroll Airport Commission, says the structure is obscured under a plane’s left wing as it comes in to land on two of the runways. “If you fly a standard flight pattern to land on the runway, oddly enough you’ll go right over that grain leg,” Wittrock says. “…We feel it’s going to be a hazard.” A trial date has been set for June 28th.

Commission members say they’re not necessarily looking for complete removal of the structure and reducing its height by at least 61 feet would answer their concerns. Danner says the grain leg cost about 300-thousand dollars to build and lowering the system by just 40 feet would cost him 200-thousand dollars because of the conveyors he’d have to install to handle his grain.

Danner obtained a special permit from Carroll County officials for construction of the grain handling tower. In 2013, a county official said the F-A-A had determined the tower could remain if it was properly lit at night.

(Radio Iowa)

Study finds 800,000 Iowans have diabetes or are at risk

News

January 22nd, 2016 by Ric Hanson

More than one-third of Iowa’s population is either diabetic or prediabetic and a new campaign is being launched here in hopes of reversing a dangerous trend. Dr. David Grayson Marrero, past-president of the American Diabetes Association, says they’re focusing on the several hundred-thousand Iowans who are prediabetic with the goal of getting them to make a few key changes that could mean saving their lives.

“Risk factors would be: excess weight or obesity; it would be family history of type 2 diabetes, a first-degree relative, mother, father, sister, brother,” Dr. Marrero says. “It could be age. Older people are more likely to have prediabetes. It can be a woman who’s had gestational diabetes or diabetes during pregnancy.”

The website, Do I Have Prediabetes-dot-org (doihaveprediabetes.org), features a simple test people can take to determine if they might have the condition. He says prediabetes can be headed off before it worsens. “Very modest changes in your lifestyle,” Marrero says. “Losing five to ten-percent of your body weight and increasing your physical activity to the equivalent of 150 minutes a week of walking, that’s 30 minutes a day. It can really make a huge difference and reduce your risk between 60 to 70-percent.”

Studies find about 300-thousand Iowans, or about 12-percent of the population, has diabetes and perhaps 20-percent of them don’t know it as they haven’t been diagnosed. There are several long-term risks of prediabetes, including stroke, heart attacks, blindness and amputation. Research suggests once people are aware of their condition, they’re more likely to make the lifestyle changes necessary to prevent or delay progression to type 2 diabetes. Marrero is director of the Diabetes Translational Research Center at the Indiana University School of Medicine.

(Radio Iowa)