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Council Bluffs & Omaha look to combine efforts to market metro area

News

December 13th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Instead of trying to market individual states, many in the business world are now looking at economic development from a metropolitan perspective. Consultants are working to create a unique joint effort to spark growth that would join forces between a southwest Iowa community and its larger neighbor in Nebraska. Jeff Beals, executive vice president for the World Group in Omaha, explains the goal.

Beals says, “Omaha and Council Bluffs could become the first bi-state metro area in the entire country to truly integrate their economic development efforts.” On the other side of Iowa, there’s a flurry of advertising done by the Quad Cities, to promote Davenport, Bettendorf and their metro neighbors Moline and Rock Island in Illinois. Beals says the Council Bluffs-Omaha effort would be different in its marketing strategy in a way that could benefit the entire region.

“You would be bringing two states to the table,” Beals says. “If one state has better incentives for a certain type of factory, you highlight that place. Meanwhile, the whole metro area benefits because of increased jobs.” Beals says no final decision has been made on launching the project.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa News Headlines: Fri., 12/13/13

News

December 13th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from the Associated Pres…

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa’s governor and the state’s entire congressional delegation are asking the Obama administration to hold a hearing in Iowa to discuss the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to reduce ethanol production in 2014. The EPA in November proposed cutting production to 2012 levels, prompting outcry by political leaders from both parties who claimed such a move would devastate Iowa’s economy. An Iowa State University economist says the economic impact elected officials claim is overstated. The EPA is taking public comment for 60 days on its recommendation.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Governor Terry Branstad says he has reached a deal with federal authorities to expand low income health care. Branstad announced Thursday that he had an agreement with officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Iowa sought a waiver enabling the state to receive more federal Medicaid money for the proposed Iowa Health and Wellness Plan. State officials said they had reached a compromise on one sticking point in the negotiations. The state wanted to charge small monthly premiums to some plan participants. Under the compromise, the state could charge those with lower incomes, but couldn’t deny benefits for not paying.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A panel of Iowa budget experts is expecting tax revenue to rise in the next fiscal year. The Revenue Estimating Conference met Thursday to project the state revenue numbers that Governor Terry Branstad will use to craft his next budget plan. The group predicts net state revenue — made up of taxes and other sources — will come in at nearly $7 billion for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1st. That represents an increase of about $300 million over the current year.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Federal authorities in Iowa have charged a Florida man working for a Chinese company with conspiracy to steal patented corn seed trade secrets from two leading U.S. seed developers. U.S. Attorney Nicholas Klinefeldt announced Thursday that Mo Hailong, also known as Robert Mo, is in custody. He is alleged to have taken corn from fields in Iowa and Illinois with five other men working for a subsidiary of Chinese-based DBN Group. Authorities are searching for the others.

COLFAX, Iowa (AP) — Authorities in central Iowa responded to a vehicle collision involving an empty school bus. The Jasper County Sheriff’s Office says the crash happened Thursday afternoon on Highway F48 between Colfax and Newton. Des Moines television station KCCI reports a vehicle that hit the school bus later burst into flames. The station also reports the bus had no students onboard.

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — Officials say they’ve begun the adoption process for seven puppies found cold and wet in a storage bin on the side of a street in Mason City. The Humane Society of North Iowa says a good Samaritan brought the puppies to a shelter managed by the Humane Society on December 5th after he spotted a plastic bin on a neighborhood curb that said, “Free Puppies.” The National Weather Service says Mason City reached a high of 15 degrees that day. An official with the Humane Society says the puppies are in good health, but the bitter cold could have caused serious hypothermia or death.

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Brynn Williamson scored a career-high 21 points and 17th-ranked Iowa State beat Number 21 Iowa 83-70 Thursday night for its best start in 12 years. Jadda Buckley had 19 points and Hallie Christofferson scored 18 with 14 rebounds for the Cyclones, who are 9-0 for the first time since starting 12-0 in 2001-02. Iowa State also improved to 9-0 at home against the Hawkeyes under coach Bill Fennelly.

Second Shotgun Deer Season Begins Saturday in IA

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s first shotgun deer season closed Wednesday and officials with the Department of Natural Resources say the preliminary numbers indicate that license sales and harvest are both down from previous years. Sales of licenses declined 7 percent from 2012 and the reported harvest is 18 percent lower. The decrease reflects decreased deer numbers across the state as well as fewer licenses being issued, continuing the downward trend in harvest since its peak in 2006. The bitterly cold weather was likely a factor as well.

Iowa’s second shotgun season begins Saturday. Historically a lower kill during the first season often results in more deer being taken during the second. Hunters get an additional weekend of hunting during the second season and the weather forecast looks more favorable. Party hunting is a common practice during the shotgun season and hunters are reminded to be careful when hunting in a group.

Always make sure that you are shooting in a safe direction before pulling the trigger. Hunters during the second season typically take a higher percentage of does than first season hunters do. However, if hunters are seeing fewer deer where they hunt they may want to refrain from harvesting extra does. Hunters should check with landowners to see if deer numbers are at an acceptable level and tailor their harvest accordingly.

To avoid waiting in line hunters should consider buying a license today. Current sales for the second season are nearly 30,000 below last year but a large proportion of hunters wait until the last minute to buy a license. About 25,000 licenses will be purchased between Thursday and Saturday morning. Hunters are reminded to report their harvest within 24 hours of recovering their deer. The DNR says that information is an important part of the data needed to manage Iowa’s deer herd.

Cass Co. Sheriff’s Office News

News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office, Thursday, announced the election of Deputy William Ayers as an at-large member of the board of the Iowa Sheriff’s and Deputies’ Association for a two-year term. And, as KJAN News mentioned Wednesday, a new deputy is being welcomed to the Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Tyler Shiels. Deputy Shiels is a currently certified officer and is a graduate of DMAAC with a degree in Criminal Justice.

New report says Iowa pension fund in good shape

News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A new report says Iowa’s public pension system remains in strong fiscal health. The analysis from the Iowa Policy Project was released Thursday. The report says the funds serving over 340,000 current, former and retired public sector workers in Iowa are in good financial shape. Plan participants include state and local government workers.

According to the liberal think tank’s report, the system took a financial hit over the past decade due to stock market losses. But the state has made some benefit rule changes in recent years, including giving the pension system more power to adjust contribution rates.

The latest actuarial review of the pension system shows that the state has 81 percent of the assets needed to pay projected benefits. That means they are currently short about $5.8 billion.

USDA Designates 44 Counties in Iowa as Primary Natural Disaster Areas with Assistance to Farmers and Ranchers in Adjacent States

Ag/Outdoor, News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The U-S Department of Agriculture has designated 44 counties in Iowa as primary natural disaster areas due to damages and losses caused by a recent drought. Among the counties included in the designation in the KJAN listening area is: Adair, Audubon, Crawford, Guthrie, Madison, Shelby, Sac, Carroll, Union and Dallas.  Farmers in contiguous counties also qualify for natural disaster assistance, including those in Adams, Cass, Harrison, Pottawattamie, Monona, Ringgold, and Taylor Counties.

Qualified farmers and ranchers in all counties designated as natural disaster areas are eligible for low interest Emergency Loans from the USDA’s Farm Service Agency, provided eligibility requirements are met. Those individuals have eight-months from Dec. 11th, 2013 to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses.

Additional information is available online at http://disaster.fsa.usda.gov., or at your local USDA Service Center.

Injury accident east of Adair Thursday morning

News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa State Patrol reports two people suffered minor injuries during a collision this (Thursday) morning, about two-miles east of Adair. Officials say an unidentified male minor was driving a 2003 Pontiac Grand Am eastbound on Whitepole Road and attempting to turn north onto Indigo Avenue. A westbound 2001 GMC SUV driven by 28-year old Kelli Sue Prescott, of Yale, was traveling west on White Pole Road when the car turned in front of the SUV.

The driver of the Grand Am was not wearing his seat belt. Officials say the boy and Prescott, who was wearing her seat belt, were transported by Stuart and Adair Rescue to the Guthrie County Hospital following the crash, which occurred at around 8:40-a.m.

The driver of the Pontiac was cited for Failure to Yield upon making a left turn.

(Update) eastern IA man escapes injury during Thu. morning crash on I-80 in Cass Co.

News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

In an update to our story this (Thursday) morning, the Cass County Sheriff’s Office says a north east Iowa man escaped injury after he crashed the semi he was driving on Interstate 80 near the Marne interchange. Officials say Cass County deputies responded to a report of a single-vehicle accident on I-80, just after 4-a.m.

The 2007 semi driven by 48-year old Robert Alan Patterson, of Aplington, was eastbound on I-80 when Patterson fell asleep at the wheel. The semi drifted to the right and struck a guardrail and passing beneath the overpass.

Damage to the vehicle is estimated at $7,500. Damage to the guardrail is estimated at $1000. Patterson was cited for Failure to Maintain Control.

 

 

(Update) Bluffs man dies in crash on I-29

News

December 12th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Police in Council Bluffs have released the identity of a man who died following a rollover accident Wednesday evening on Interstate 29. Officials say 41-year old Michael Bachmann,  of Council Bluffs, died at Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, following the crash on I-29 at around 4:45-p.m., Wednesday. Bachmann was partially ejected from the vehicle as it rolled.

The crash happened at about the 55-mile marker, located between the North 35th and North 25th Street exits. Authorities suspect speed and alcohol were factors in the crash.

Northbound traffic on I-29 was blocked at North 35th Street. All lanes were open again by 7:20 p.m.

8AM Newscast 12-12-2013

News, Podcasts

December 12th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson