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2 men arrested on weapons charges Friday in Lewis


June 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Two Cass County men were arrested on weapons charges Friday evening in Lewis, after authorities responded to a report of a man waving a gun at another man. Deputies were called to the scene in the 400 block of Oregon Street at around 7:46-p.m., Friday. Following an investigation, 44-year old Craig Allen Griffen, of Atlantic, and 43-year old Stanley Oral Rossell, of Lewis, were taken into custody in front of 311 Oregon Street. Both faces charges of Going Armed with Intent. Griffen faces an additional charge of Carrying a Concealed Weapon. Both men were brought to the Cass County Jail, in Atlantic.

Rossell was released later that evening on $5,000 bond. Griffen was released Saturday, on $7,000 bond.

7AM Newscast 06-09-2014

News, Podcasts

June 9th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Consolidations expected to continue in the coming years


June 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Educators in Iowa say another round school district consolidation is likely in the years ahead due to dwindling rural populations and the expiration of a state provision that allows districts with declining enrollment to recoup some budget losses. The Des Moines Register reports 14 districts will merge to become seven in July. Iowa will start the 2014-15 academic year with 338 school districts. The state had 367 districts a decade ago. In 1990, there were 430.

Merging two or more neighboring school districts brings both benefits and challenges. Larger districts can offer more courses and extracurricular activities. But consolidation also can result in long bus rides for students, lost jobs at shuttered schools and weakened hometown ties. Education officials predict Iowa will see an uptick in consolidations in coming years, reigniting conversations about how to best serve rural students in a state that’s seen significant urban migration in the past decade.

Budget troubles play a big role in the reason for consolidation. In Iowa, it is illegal for a school district to operate in the red. State officials sent notices to roughly 65 districts last year that were in danger of deficit spending. Twelve of those districts — all in rural areas — recorded negative balances in the 2013 fiscal year.

Districts receive state money on a per-pupil basis. More than half of all Iowa districts reported a decrease in student enrollment last fall. Financial incentives from the state encourage small districts to share resources. Extra money is given to school systems that enter whole-grade sharing agreements, a partnership where students from two or more districts attend all or most of their classes together.

Districts that share superintendents or other key personnel are also eligible for additional state money, helping small districts stay afloat. A fiscal tool called the budget guarantee passed by lawmakers in 2001, expired this year, putting further pressure on rural schools. The budget guarantee had allowed some districts to use local property tax revenue to boost their spending authority despite declining enrollment.

Data from a 2010 report by the Iowa Policy Research Organization suggests that districts operate best with at least 500 students. Districts with 500 or more students benefit from operational cost-savings, increased course offerings and an increase in property values, the report said. The East Mills district, formed in 2011 when the Malvern and Nishna Valley districts merged, educated 494 students in preschool through 12th grade this year. The western Iowa districts had participated in whole-grade sharing for four years before the reorganization.

State officials don’t have a threshold for how small is too small, but Iowa code requires newly formed districts to enroll at least 300 students.

No new cases of CWD discovered

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has looked through more than four-thousand samples and did not find any news cases of Chronic Wasting Disease in deer. D-N-R Wildlife Research Supervisor, Willie Suchy, a deer shot in Allamakee County remains the only positive case in the wild deer population. “It’s good news, we wish there were zero, but we knew the day would come when we would end up with a positive given the proximity of C-W-D in other states,” Suchy says. It’s pretty likely since the deer was shot in a border county that the animal was visiting Iowa from one of those other states.

“We think that the most likely scenario is that this is a deer that was probably in Wisconsin — or it could have been Illinois or Minnesota — and migrated over and showed up in Iowa. It was a mature adult buck and those are — when they’re yearling, some of the animals that travel the furthest,” according to Suchy.  Suchy says. “If we don’t detect any new cases, then we would conclude that we are back to just normal surveillance.” The D-N-R held three public meetings in Allamakee And Clayton County on C-W-D, and Suchy says those residents appear willing to help.

“People are very willing at this point to work with us to get more samples and find out more and then down the road someday there may have to be some harder decisions if we find more,” Suchy says. He says controlling the spread of C-W-D all depends on how large an infestation there is.  Suchy says it’s possibly that natural mortality and the annual hunting seasons could wipe out the infected deer if the infestation is at a low level.

The D-N-R has taken samples from nearly 51-thousand wild deer and 35-hundred captive deer and elk for C-W-D since 2002. Most of the samples are taken in the 11 counties in northeast Iowa which is the area closest to states that have C-W-D infestations.

(Radio Iowa)

Report: Dying at a Concert is Easier Than You Think


June 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The summer concert season has arrived, but there are a number of dangers lurking amongst the music and the crowds that can lead to tragedy mainly for teens and young adults. A new analysis from ClickitTicket reviewed more than 200 fatalities at concerts since 1969 and about three-dozen were drug-related. C-E-O Jason O’Connor says the drugs used at concerts include cocaine, heroin, bath salts, meth and one of the most mentioned – M-D-M-A, also known as “ecstasy,” “Molly,” which can lead to hyperthermia.gr-39790-1-1

“Often times, people become very dehydrated and they don’t realize what they’re doing to their body, because let’s say they’re at a concert and they’re dancing around and they’re taking this. They don’t notice that they’re thirsty. They don’t notice anything. And that’s when you start to get into
problems.” O’Connor also notes that there have been stories of bad batches of M-D-M-A, laced with dangerous chemicals. In addition to the drug-related deaths, the other leading causes of fatalities at concerts are stampedes, structural failures and violence.

While overdoses or deaths can happen at any music venue, O’ Connor points to festivals such as Bonnaroo, where there have been 10 fatalities over the past decade, at least half drug-related.
“And Phish shows do seem to have quite a bit of drugs there. That’s sort of an extension of the Grateful Dead and there were a lot of drugs in that culture. And then the other real big one that we talked about was EDM or electronic dance music.”

O’Connor says concert and festival promoters and organizers can’t ensure that all attendees are drug free, but they can take simple steps to make their events as safe as possible for young people including education, parent involvement and policing.

(Iowa News Service)

Iowa early News Headlines: Mon., June 9th 2014


June 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez has been crowned Miss USA 2014. She has beat out 50 other contestants Sunday night in Louisiana. First runner-up was Miss North Dakota Audra Mari. Miss Iowa Carlyn Bradarich was one of the other runner ups in Baton Rouge. Bradarich got a second chance when the viewing audience gave her the most votes on Twitter.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — University of Iowa defensive back Nico Law is facing a criminal charge and consequences at school for fighting outside an Iowa City restaurant. Law, who will be a senior this fall, was cited for disorderly conduct after the incident at 1:45 a.m. Saturday. Police say the 21-year-old football player assaulted another man after that man argued with a woman who was with Law.

MEDIAPOLIS, Iowa (AP) — A string of nearly 60 burglaries since February has unnerved residents of the small Iowa town of Mediapolis. Des Moines County Sheriff Mike Johnstone tells The Burlington Hawk Eye the crimes are likely being committed by someone who lives in the area and needs cash, but the culprit has eluded capture.

OSKALOOSA, Iowa (AP) — The Department of Natural Resources says a Des Moines woman was seriously injured when the all-terrain vehicle she was riding rolled over. The DNR says the crash happened Sunday afternoon at Bluff Creek park southwest of Oskaloosa when 36-year-old Roberta Curry apparently hit a tree root, causing the four-wheel vehicle she was riding to overturn.

Public Hearing in Atlantic Mon. morning


June 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A public hearing will be held early Monday morning in Atlantic, during a meeting of the Board of Adjustment. During the meeting in the Council’s Chambers at City Hall, a hearing will be held with regard to a Variance application by Jim and Linda Headlee, who reside at 1008 Laurel Street, in Atlantic.

Their application seeks permission to expand a residential garage not conforming to accessory setback requirements (as stated in the City’s Zoning Ordinance). The site of the garage would be at 1008 Laurel Street.

The meeting and hearing begins at 7:30-a.m., Monday.

IA Republican nominating convention moved from Creston to Urbandale


June 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Iowa Republican Party Chairman Danny Carroll announced Saturday, that the location of the nominating convention has been moved from Creston, to Urbandale. The Republican nominee for Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District will be decided at a special nominating convention held on Saturday, June 21st, at the Des Moines Christian School (13007 Douglas Parkway), in Urbandale, as the Creston location announced earlier, is not available due to a scheduling conflict.

513 delegates will represent the 3rd District and select the GOP’s nominee for the 3rd Congressional District. Carroll said “As no candidate received the necessary 35% share of the vote in the primary election, rules state that the party’s nominee will be selected at a convention whose date and location is set by the Chairman.”

The state party will be mailing out notices to delegates and alternates, informing them of additional details for the June 21st special nominating convention. Delegates will credential in between 8:30am-9:45am with the convention being called to order at 10:00am.


Car vs. motorcycle injury accident in Council Bluffs


June 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Police in Council Bluffs say one person was injured Saturday afternoon, following a car-versus-motorcycle accident  at the intersection of Avenue A and north 36th Street. Authorities report 21-year old Tyler Norman, of Council Bluffs, suffered life-threatening injuries during the crash, and was transported by Council Bluffs Fire and Rescue to Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha. Officials said he was not wearing a helmet.

Norman was operating a 2013 Kawasaki motorcycle westbound on Avenue at around 3:55-p.m., when he hit the right rear of a 1998 Chrysler Sebring that was traveling north on North 36th Street. The driver of the car, 45-year old Ramona Springman, of Manilla, was transported by private vehicle to Jennie Edmundson Hospital, in Council Bluffs.

Speed is considered to be a factor in the crash, which remains under investigation.

Email scam uses legitimate news to con victims


June 7th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – A new email scam is playing off the good fortunes of a Kansas City man who won a huge lottery last year to entice potential victims to shell out hundreds of dollars to claim their share of the prize. The Kansas City Star reports people all over the U.S. have received emails saying the local mechanic who won a $71.5 million Powerball jackpot in December wants to give then $750,000 each as his way of “paying it forward.”

But authorities warn the ruse has all the earmarks of a Nigerian letter fraud scheme that has been going on even before the Internet. FBI spokeswoman Bridget Patton reminds people of the old adage that anything that looks too good to be true probably is.