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Iowa’s ag secretary asks again for money to combat bird flu

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The head of Iowa’s agriculture department is once again asking state leaders for financial help to better prepare for potential animal diseases like bird flu. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says his request (on Monday) for $500,000 would be used to train livestock farmers to increase bio-security efforts when responding to outbreaks involving foreign diseases like bird flu, which hit the state in 2015. The disease killed 48 million birds nationwide, including 24 million Iowa laying hens.

The request, made during an annual budget hearing with Gov. Terry Branstad, mirrors Northey’s request one year ago to combat the same issue. Branstad didn’t include it his budget recommendations last January, citing limitations to the state budget. A Branstad spokesman says the governor will evaluate the latest request.

Numerous arrests in Pott. County over the past week


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office, Monday (Today), released numerous reports on arrests and incidents that have taken place since early last week. Officials say among them, was the arrest on Thanksgiving Day, of 18-year old Tyler Shawn Alwan, of Council Bluffs. Alwan was charged with two counts of Possession with the Intent to Deliver, Marijuana and Cocaine. A Pott. County Sheriff’s Deputy stopped Alwan’s vehicle at around 1:35-a.m. for equipment violations, and upon further investigation, located a substantial amount of narcotics in the vehicle, including a little more than one-half pound of marijuana and 2.4 grams of Cocaine, along with various pieces of drug paraphernalia.

A Council Bluffs woman was arrested Saturday afternoon on drug and alcohol charges, after a Deputy conducted a traffic stop on an SUV for speeding and passing in a no passing zone. 31-year old Sara Ann Wilson was subsequently arrested for OWI/1st offense, Possession of a Controlled Substance (nearly 20.5 grams of marijuana) and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

Sheriff’s officials said also, 46-year old Brenda Lee Hone, of Council Bluffs, was arrested Thursday, for Domestic Assault with Injury, after she allegedly assaulted her 54-year old boyfriend at a residence, then drove off. The victim suffered minor injuries. Hone’s vehicle  was located and a traffic stop conducted. Deputies noticed she had suffered minor injuries during the altercation, but did not require medical attention. She was brought to the Pott. County Jail, where Hone allegedly began to resist Corrections Officers.  The woman was placed in a holding cell until she calmed down.

And, a Council Bluffs man already in the Pott. County Jail on separate charges, was served with a warrant last Wednesday. 41-year old Shane Leland Millett was served with a warrant for two counts of Sexual Abuse in the 2nd Degree, Indecent Contact with a Child, and Lascivious Acts with a Child. He remained held in the Pottawattamie County Jail.

Accident investigation in Pott. County leads to Oakland juveniles cited into court


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A total of five juveniles from Oakland were cited into Juvenile court last week, following an investigation into an accident that took place Nov. 21st. The Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office says the teens, all of whom are male, included two 13-year old’s and three 16-year old’s. They were cited in connection with acts of vandalism and trespassing that took place in early October at the Oakland Golf and Country Club.

Three juveniles were charged with Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree and Theft in the 5th degree, along with Trespassing after business hours at the course. Two other teens were charged with Trespass. Officials say $500 damage was done to hole #3 on the property. The hole was damaged by the responsible parties taking flags from the course and poking 50 holes in the turf on two separate occasions.

The information came forward from the teens after Deputies were dispatched to 316 S. Gates Street for a property damage accident, and flags from the Oakland Golf and Country Club were located in the vehicle. The names of the teens were not released because of their age.


Rural Clarinda woman arrested on an OWI charge


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Page County Sheriff’s Office says a traffic stop late last Wednesday night north of College Springs, resulted in the arrest a woman on an OWI charge.  25-year old Taylor Paige Mulkins, of rural Clarinda, was arrested for OWI 1st Offense.  Mulkins was booked into the Page County Jail and was held on $1000 bond pending further court proceedings.

Sheriff Lyle Palmer said also, on November 27th, an rural Essex man reported that an unknown person or persons removed two log chains, a clevis, and some assorted hand tools from a tool box from a building at his residence.  The burglary occurred sometime between November 18th and November 26th. Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call the Page County Sheriff’s Office @ 712-542-5193 or their local Law Enforcement agency.


Cumberland man arrested on felony Lascivious Acts w/a child & other charges


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s Deputies in Cass County, Sunday, arrested 49-year old Timothy Glen Post, of Cumberland, on a Class-D felony charge of Lascivious Acts with a Child. Post faces additional charges of Indecent Conduct with a Child, Indecent Exposure, and Dissemination of Obscene Material (Serious). He was taken to the Cass County Jail where he remains held on $9,000 cash bond.

On November 22nd, Cass County Sheriff’s Deputies arrested 32-year old Ehren Michael Mardesen, of Anita, on charges of Possession of Marijuana 1st Offense, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and Disorderly Conduct. And, 24-year old Kevin Allen Fee, of Chariton, was arrested that same day for Possession of Marijuana 3rd Offense, and Disorderly Conduct. Both men were taken to the Cass County Jail and were released the following day on their own recognizances.

On November 17, 2016, the Cass County Sheriff’s office arrested 44-year old Kimberly Denise Zeibig, of Griswold, and 36-year old Jason David White, of Council Bluffs, on charges of Interference with Official Acts. Both were taken to the Cass County Jail and were released the following day on their own recognizances.

On November 25th, Deputies in Cass County arrested 56-year old Robert Joseph Szewczyk, of Princeton, WI, for Theft in the 5th Degree. Szewczyk was taken to the Cass County Jail where he pled guilty and was released later that day.

And, the Sheriff’s office says on November 17th, 39-year old Jack Osborne, Jr, of Council Bluffs, was arrested on a Pottawattamie County warrant. Osborne was transferred to Pottawattamie County the following day.

Interim director named to lead Iowa’s transportation agency


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Gov. Terry Branstad has named an interim director to oversee Iowa’s transportation department after its last leader resigned. The governor’s office says Mark Lowe will formally take over the Iowa Department of Transportation on Tuesday. Lowe gave an agency budget presentation on Monday following an announcement of his new post.

Lowe replaces Paul Trombino, who resigned earlier this month. Trombino, whose last day on the job is Monday, says he stepped down so he could consider taking a private sector job. Lowe has led Iowa DOT’s motor vehicle division since 2009, and he previously served as the department’s general counsel. There is no timeline for naming a new Iowa DOT director, though officials are now accepting applications.

Iowa medical cannabis oil supporters hope for law expansion


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Medical marijuana supporters are hopeful the Iowa Legislature could expand the state’s limited cannabis oil law. The Des Moines Register  reports that Republican Rep. Clel Baudler plans to propose a bill that would allow the production and distribution of medical cannabis oil in Iowa.

The Legislature passed a law in 2014 that allows Iowa residents to possess cannabis oil for the treatment of epilepsy. That law is set to expire in July. A separate law currently makes it illegal to manufacture or distribute that oil in the state, while federal law prohibits its transportation across state lines.

Threase Harms, who lobbies on behalf of the Epilepsy Foundation and the upper Midwest chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, says the organizations will continue to try and educate lawmakers about the issue to build broader support.

Univ. of Iowa says $45M gift will fund neuroscience research


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – The University of Iowa says a $45 million donation will fund a center to research diseases that affect the brain and nervous system. The Iowa Neuroscience Institute will investigate causes, preventions, treatments and cures. It will be led by Ted Abel, a University of Pennsylvania professor who will join Iowa’s faculty in January.

The gift comes from the university’s largest donor, the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust, which has now given $195 million. It was founded after the 1981 death of Carver, a Muscatine businessman and philanthropist.

The center will bring together top researchers from across the university, including biologists, computer scientists and engineers. The donation will support laboratories, research projects and faculty salaries. Medical school dean Jean Robillard says the gift will foster “a new era of scientific innovation.”

230 percent increase in hospital ERs in Iowa treating opioid overdoses


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The state’s top medical officer has issued a “standing order” to pharmacies, so qualified people can get a drug that stabilizes people who overdose on “opioids” like Oxycontin or heroin. Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds says the drug “Naloxone”  doesn’t “cure” the overdose, but it reduces the impact an opioid overdose has on the respiratory system, giving more time to get the victim to a hospital.

“First responders along with family members and friends to someone at risk for an opioid overdose are all encouraged to become aware of Naloxone, gain access to it and learn how it is administered,” Reynolds says. Iowa is now one of more than 30 states with a law that lets people who respond to emergencies or who are close to an addict get Naloxone. “Recognizing and responding to an opioid overdose can mean the difference between life and death,” Reynolds says.

In Iowa over the past decade, there’s been a 230 percent increase in emergency room visits from patients who’ve overdosed on an opioid.

(Radio Iowa)

Governor says Iowa law on release of police ‘dash cam’ video may need to be clarified


November 28th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Governor Terry Branstad says it may be time for state officials to “carefully” review when video from police cameras mounted on dash boards and police body camera footage may be released to the public. “This is kind of a recent development, these police cameras, and I think it would be appropriate for us to carefully review our laws,” Branstad says.

Cedar Rapids police have not released the video of an officer-involved shooting during a traffic stop on November 1st. The Linn County Attorney has said the video of the shooting is exempt release under Iowa’s Open Records Law. The Iowa Public Information Board told Cedar Rapids media it’s up to the police chief to decide whether the dash camera should be released.

“The Iowa Public Information Board was established to really be able to answer questions that come up on this subject, but if there is an ambiguity or if there’s areas that need to be clarified, it may require legislative action so that’s something that I think we need to carefully look at and determine what would be appropriate to again protect the public safety, but do it in a way that’s fair and even-handed.”

Branstad says in general, he supports “transparency” that makes nearly all government documents and records public, but he says releasing these kinds of videos could “jeopardize” prosecutors’ ability to get a conviction. “Here’s the thing: when you’re looking at these kind of videos, they oftentimes involve a criminal investigation and so you don’t want to…release prematurely items that are important for a criminal investigation, so you have to be very careful about that,” Branstad says.

The Linn County Attorney is convening a grand jury to determine whether the Cedar Rapids policeman was justified in shooting Jerime Mitchell, who goes by the nickname “Danky”. Mitchell was shot in the neck during some sort of altercation with the officer and is paralyzed. Cedar Rapids police have not said why Mitchell was pulled over or what may have led to the altercation.

(Radio Iowa)