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Separate trials ordered for parents of girl starved to death


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The adoptive parents of a West Des Moines teenager who officials say was starved to death will have separate trials. The Des Moines Register reports that a judge issued the ruling Wednesday for separate trials from 42-year-old Nicole Finn and 46-year-old Joseph Finn in the October death of 16-year-old Natalie Finn.

Nicole Finn’s trial on first-degree murder and other charges has been set for Oct. 23. Joseph Finn’s trial on charges of kidnapping, neglect or abandonment and child endangerment has been set for Nov. 27.

A medical examiner found that Natalie Finn died from denial of critical care. A neighbor reported to police that Natalie Finn had regularly asked for food before her death.

Reynolds inaugural ‘celebration’ is strategic move for GOP


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds will be the headliner at an unofficial inaugural event this week that raises money for the Republican Party. The strategic move highlights the GOP’s focus on the upcoming midterm elections and Reynolds’ anticipated gubernatorial run.

The Republican Party of Iowa is footing the bill for what it’s calling an “Inaugural Celebration” for Reynolds, who was sworn in May 24. A ticket to the Friday night event at a downtown Des Moines hotel will cost $75 per attendee and include hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar.

Iowa GOP spokesman Carlos Cruz emphasized the occasion is not a formal inaugural event but instead a fundraiser. Republicans next year will try to keep congressional seats and maintain majorities they now enjoy in both the state House and Senate.

Young Announces Griswold Fire Department to Receive $48,448 for Firefighters


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Iowa Congressman David Young today (Wednesday) announced the Griswold Fire Department will receive $48,448 in grant funding through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) Program. The funding was authorized by the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations, of which Congressman Young is the only member from the State of Iowa.

The AFG program awards competitive grants to fire departments and other organizations nationwide to obtain and maintain necessary equipment, facilities, training, and programs. The AFG program is part of a larger preparedness effort in support of the safety, security, and health of the public.

“This important grant funding will help ensure the Griswold Fire Department has the resources to work safely and effectively,” Congressman Young said. “I’m pleased this award will benefit our firefighters, and the safety and security of the entire Griswold community.”

Harlan Police report (5/31/17)


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Harlan Police Department report last Saturday, 24-year old Nelson Reed Guyer, of Harlan, was cited into court for Unnecessary Noise, after officers were called to the 400 block of Durant Street, for a complaint about loud music. And, last Friday, 55-year old Curt Grant Whiteley, of Harlan, was arrested in the area of 19th and Willow Streets, on a charge of Public Intoxication.

North Nebraska authorities investigating Iowa man’s death


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

NORDEN, Neb. (AP) – Authorities are investigating the death of an Iowa man who’d been canoeing on the Niobrara River in northern Nebraska. Keya Paha County Attorney Eric Scott said Wednesday that 68-year-old Garry Kaufman was pronounced dead on the scene Saturday after being removed from the river near Norden. Kaufman lived in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Scott says Kaufman had been canoeing with a group. The attorney also says the circumstances leading up to Kaufman’s death remain unclear, but there’s no indication that any crime was involved. No autopsy has been ordered.

Iowa residents enjoy free fishing days June 2-4

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Iowa residents may fish without a license on June 2, 3 and 4 as part of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) free fishing weekend. “Free fishing weekend is a great opportunity for Iowans to reconnect with fishing,” said Joe Larscheid, chief of the Iowa DNR’s Fisheries Bureau. “Invite a kid, your best friend or your mom to come along. Have some fun and create new memories.”

Gather your family or friends and travel to one of the hundreds of Iowa lakes, thousands of miles of rivers or a nearby pond for a few hours of outdoor fun and relaxation. Iowans can try fishing without buying a license during free fishing weekend. All other regulations remain in place.

“This is a great time to take kids fishing or introduce someone new to fishing,” Larscheid said. “Fish are usually close to shore and are willing to bite. Use small tackle – little hooks, a bobber no larger than a quarter, 4-pound test line and small bait to catch bluegills.

“Kids will stay interested and have fun when the fishing is good. Just let them play once the interest in fishing is gone,” he said. “It isn’t about how many fish you can catch; it’s about sharing your time and having fun together.”

Fun, hands-on fishing events will be offered across Iowa to teach parents or kids the basics of fishing. A list of fishing clinics, derbies, and other fun events co-sponsored by the DNR is available on the Special Events Application System at programs.iowadnr.gov/specialevents/.

“We hope free fishing weekend will inspire anglers to buy an annual fishing license,” Larscheid said. This investment allows the Iowa DNR Fisheries Bureau to produce and stock more than 160 million fish annually, conduct research studies to manage fish more effectively, construct fish habitat, improve water quality, restore lakes with a history of poor fishing and improve access for anglers.

Find tips for taking kids fishing and catching crappie, bluegills and yellow bass on the DNR website at www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Fishing-Tips-How-Tos.

Labor Day weekend campsite reservations open soon

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Just as one holiday ends, it is time to think about another. Campers hoping to reserve spots for the 2017 Labor Day weekend need to mark June 1 on their calendars, when reservations for a Friday arrival open.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says by June 1, some sites will already be reserved by campers arriving prior to the holiday weekend, and electric sites go quickly.

For more information on Iowa’s state parks and to make a reservation, visit www.iowadnr.gov/reservations

Iowa State University seeks first nursing degree program


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

AMES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa State University is seeking approval to offer its first nursing degree program in order to help Des Moines area nurses obtain bachelor degrees.

The Iowa City Press-Citizen reports university officials are seeking approval from the Iowa Board of Regents and the Iowa Board of Nursing to create the new program through which registered nurses who already have their associate’s degree can earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.

The university and Des Moines Area Community College have collaborated on the proposed program. It’s expected to be running by Fall 2018, attract about 50 students for its first year and bring in about 200 students after it’s established.

The regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee is scheduled to discuss the proposal during a meeting June 7.

Cass County Supervisors once again table fireworks Resolution


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors have again tabled action on a Resolution pertaining to fireworks sales and discharge. The Board is still waiting for County Attorney Dave Wiederstein to present the final draft of the Resolution. Many counties and cities in the State are waiting until they get better guidance on how they should govern the sale and use of fireworks, a bill for which former Governor Terry Branstad signed into law May 9th.

The bill approved the sale of fireworks from June 1st through July 8th. And, while the law does not allow a ban on the sale of fireworks, it does allow local governments the final say on if and/or where fireworks can be used. Fireworks sales for vendors with a permanent structure begin June 1st. Sales from temporary structures begin June 13th. A vendor must be licensed and inspected before any sale can take place.

In other business, the Board approved the two-year appointment of Registered Nurse Michelle Woosley, of Atlantic, as an additional County Medical Examiner Investigator. She will join the other two investigators the County has in-place.

And, in his report, Cass County Engineer Charles Becthold said crews have begun to use an asphalt cold patch mix to fix cracks in about 3.4-miles worth of roads located northeast of Anita. He said the good news is that the repairs, once completed, should last about 7-to 10-years. The bad news he says, is that it will cost more than the $40,000 engineer’s estimate for the project.

The Board also heard a presentation from Laurie Cooley, Director of Zion Recovery Services, Incorporated, and Erin Juhl, Clinical Outpatient Treatment Supervisor for Zion, with regard to the State Licensed services Zion provides to counties, and how those services work to reduce the recidivism rate (Repeated arrests), for persons who have been arrested on drug and alcohol charges, and are struggling to overcome their addictions. The program provides one-on-one Recovery Coaches, outpatient care, residential services, prevention and more, all fully confidential.

More info. on Atlantic City Clean-up Days


May 31st, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Atlantic City Administrator John Lund today (Wednesday), released more information with regard to the City-wide Clean-up Days we mentioned in a previous report. The event will take place June 7th, 8th and 9th. Pickup of your items placed by the curb will begin at 7:30-a.m. each day, through Friday.

Anything not accepted will be left on the property and be the owner’s responsibility for timely removal. Persons needing assistance moving things to curb, can contact Ali at City Hall.

Lund says the City will NOT accept the following items:

· Microwaves

· Any materials from Business Addresses

· Electronics

· Household Trash

· Paint

· Chemicals

The City will accept:

· Refrigerators

· Washers/Dryers

· Stoves

· Heaters

· Furniture

· Mattresses

· Tires (Only off of the rim and a maximum of four)