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Assault arrest in Villisca

News

March 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Villisca man was arrested Tuesday night on an assault charge. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports 42-year old Keith Allan Currin faces a charge of Simple Domestic Assault. Currin was brought to the Montgomery County Jail and held without bond, pending a court appearance.

Adair County Supervisors to hold public budget hearing today

News

March 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Board of Supervisors in Adair County will hold a public hearing this (Wednesday) morning, over the proposed Fiscal Year 2014 County Budget. The hearing, which takes place at 9:30-a.m at the courthouse in Greenfield, and will be followed by approval of a Resolution adopting the budget, and other related matters.

At 9:45, the Board will discuss and possibly act on Township Clerk Wages, and the Auditor of State bill. At 10-a.m., the Board will hear from Randy Caviness, Director of the Adair County Soil and Water Conservation District, with regard to correspondence pertaining to Taxation for the maintenance of conservation watershed structures. And, a little after 10 o’clock, the Board will act on a Resolution setting the dates for a consultation and public hearing on a proposed amendment to the Northwest Sind Farm Urban Renewal Plan.

The Adair County Board of Supervisors meeting begins at 9-a.m.

Iowa early News Headlines: Wed., March 6th 2013

News

March 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Transportation officials are reminding Iowa drivers to be careful of patchy, slick roads in the wake of a late-winter storm. The state Department of Transportation says most roads in northern and eastern Iowa are covered in snow and ice. They recommend drivers reduce speed and avoid using their vehicle’s cruise control.

ELDORA, Iowa (AP) — A teenager shot by an Iowa sheriff after authorities say the boy refused to drop a weapon has been arrested in connection with the November incident. The state Department of Public Safety says the 17-year-old boy from Marshalltown was charged yesterday with one count of intimidation with a dangerous weapon and one count of assaults on persons engaged in certain occupations.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Authorities in central Iowa are investigating how a deputy accidentally fired her handgun. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office says the female reserve deputy fired her county-issued handgun inside patrol headquarters Monday night. The deputy injured her left hand and was taken to a local hospital. She has been released.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio prison officials have moved a condemned killer from death row to the state death house ahead of today’s scheduled s execution. Inmate Frederick Treesh was sentenced to die for the 1994 shooting death of a security guard following a multistate crime rampage that crossed Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Harkin, Miller and other Democrats seek to raise minimum wage

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

WASHINGTON (AP) — House and Senate Democrats want to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, more than a dollar higher than President Barack Obama proposed in his State of the Union address. Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin and California Rep. George Miller say their bill, introduced Tuesday, would boost the minimum from its current rate of $7.25 an hour by 2015. It then calls for automatic annual increases tied to changes in the cost of living. Obama’s proposal last month called for an increase to $9 an hour, but Harkin says that doesn’t go far enough.

The lawmakers say a hike in the minimum wage would help lift millions of workers out of poverty and boost the economy. But top Republicans have rejected the idea, saying it would hurt employers.

Public hearing over Cass County Budget, Wed. morning

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing during the meeting Wednesday morning here in Atlantic, with regard to the county’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget. Following the public hearing, which is slated for 9:05-a.m., the board will review a recommendation by the County Compensation Board for a three-percent increase in the salary of all elected officials. The Board also recommended an additional $1,000 for the chairman of the Board of supervisors.

Action will then be taken during the Supervisor’s meeting on adopting the FY 2014 Secondary Roads Budget and FY 2014 Cass County Budget. Other action items on their agenda include authorizing Supervisor Chuck Rieken to sign a 28-E Juvenile Detention agreement, and the amending of  the Cass County Disposition (Of deceased remains) Policy, with an addition to indicate who may apply.

The Cass County Supervisors’ meeting begins at 9-a.m.

Two Sioux City men plead guilty to child porn charges

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Two Sioux City men have reached plea agreements on child pornography charges. Court information shows 27-year-old Chad Carver pled guilty to one count of distribution of child pornography. Carver admitted that distributed child porn on the internet between September 2010 and September 2011. Carver has agreed to be sentenced to a minimum of 10 years in prison with a maximum sentence of 20 years.

Forty-seven-year-old Jeffrey Huygens pled guilty to one count of distributing and one count of receiving child pornography between September and December of 2011. Huygens faces a minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum of 80 years. Sentencing dates are still pending for both men. Both men were prosecuted under the national Project Safe Child Initiative where federal officials work with state and local law officers to crack down on child exploitation and abuse.

(Radio Iowa)

Coalition urges federal funding to protect Loess Hills, Neal Smith refuge

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A coalition of Iowa environmental groups, elected leaders and outdoor enthusiasts is sending a letter to President Obama, urging him to fully fund a program to preserve Iowa’s two biggest patches of prairie. The president will announce his budget recommendations for the next fiscal year this week. Amelia Schoeneman, of Environment Iowa, says the Land and Water Conservation Fund helps states buy private land to create parks.

Over the years, we’ve actually seen a decrease in funding which has put places like Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge and the Loess Hills in western Iowa at risk of development and the conversion to farmland,” Schoeneman says. “There’s slowly a decrease in funds that could go towards acquiring more land and expanding these natural areas in Iowa.” The Iowa groups want to see 900-million dollars recommended for the fund. She says Iowa was originally more than 80-percent prairie, but through development and farmland over the decades, there’s now less than one-percent prairie in the state.

“Neal Smith is a unique area because it’s a restored prairie and it’s one of the largest attempts at a prairie restoration in the nation,” Schoeneman says. “The Loess Hills is very unique because it contains the largest preserved prairie, or original prairie, in the state of Iowa.” She says those two key areas, and dozens of other beloved parks in Iowa, have been providing our state’s residents with lifelong memories for decades. “Neal Smith is located just 20 miles east of Des Moines, so it’s threatened by development and most of the lands surrounding the preserve are farmlands which are also encroaching upon the reserve,” Schoeneman says. “You have the same issues with the Loess Hills with Sioux City and Council Bluffs in development as well as a conversion to farmland threatening these places.”

Groups and individuals signing the letter to the president include: Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, Iowa Audubon Society, Iowa Environmental Council, Iowa Wildlife Federation, Active Endeavors in Des Moines, Iowa City and Davenport, the Iowa Farmers Union, State Representative Dan Kelley and
State Senator Nancy Boettger, from Harlan.

(Radio Iowa)

Shelby County Board of Supervisors News

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Shelby County Supervisors have approved the Fiscal Year 2012 audit. During a regular meeting this (Tuesday) morning, Chris Nelson from Gronewold and Company, told the supervisors the county is in a good financial situation. He said “Overall you are in a good position. You have very little debt and good infrastructure. You always have projects that needed to be done and find financing for those. But overall the county is in good financial health.”

In other business, Shelby County Treasurer Carolyn Blum told the Board her office needs a new counter door, and the board approved a new crank counter door for $4,282. Shelby County Auditor Marsha Carter mentioned also, the county needs a real estate program update. The County has been budgeting for the update for the past few years. The board approved an estimate of $56,216, which will come out of the FY 2014 budget. The estimate includes training and travel for county workers.

The Shelby County Board received some good news during their meeting, from Supervisor Roger Schmitz, who reported that as of June 1st, the County will be debt free after paying off the 2007 Douglas Road bond. Schmitz said “When we had the bond we couldn’t pay it off for 5 years. Our 5 years will be up on June 1st. We will owe $605,000. We never spent all the money we bonded and we will have $422,162. So anyway, if we pay it off the first of June, we will save $72,425.04”

The Board approved a resolution authorizing the payment.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

Senate education measure follows Branstad’s plan

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Not long after Republicans in the state House scaled back Gov. Terry Branstad’s education plan, Democrats in the Senate have beefed it up again.  The Senate education legislation was introduced Monday. It boosts minimum teacher pay back to the $35,000 proposed by Branstad and mandates participation in a leadership program that would provide additional compensation to teachers who take on more responsibilities.  Sponsor Sen. Herman Quirmbach says there will be several options for how districts set up those programs.

Last month, the House approved an education plan that set minimum salaries at $32,000 and gave districts the ability to opt-out of providing salary increases or setting up the teacher leadership program.   A spokesman for Branstad says Tuesday the governor would review the Senate plan.

Harlan School Board approves Budget Guarantee

News

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Harlan Community School Board of Directors approved their budget guarantee for the next school year. In a regular meeting Monday evening, Superintendent Justin Wagner said the budget guarantees is for districts that have declining enrollments, however the Harlan district did not have declining enrollment in the past school year. Regardless, Wagner said the district was advised by state officials to approve the budget guarantee.

Wagner said “There is some nuances in the law that would allow the district some budget guarantee if the allowable growth is high enough. If the allowable growth is high enough, there is an outside chance that we could get some funding even though we didn’t have declining enrollment. That’s why we are asking the board to pass this resolution.”

In other business, the district approved renewing a swimming agreement with Lewis Central. This will be the 2nd year the district has had the agreement. Two students from the districts are currently enrolled in the program. During the district’s administrator reports, Intermediate Principal Bill Mueller said the Harlan Community 4th grade class went to Sioux City recently and placed 4th at the First Tech Challenge. The middle school class was up against 21 other teams which were all high school classes.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)