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Iowa flower shops selling roses for cheap as part of canned food drive

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Around two dozen flower shops across Iowa are participating in a food drive today (Monday) through Saturday as part of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week. The effort, which involves several states in the central U.S., is expected to generate over 32 tons of food for those in need. Brian Barks is spokesperson for Foodbank for the Heartland in Omaha, which provides services to 16 counties in western Iowa and 77 counties in Nebraska. “Thirty-two tons of food going to organizations like ours…will make a great deal of difference,” Barks said. “But, we need so much more.”

The economic downturn is credited for a 40% increase in demand for food from charity providers across the country. Barks said demand is definitely outpacing food donations at the foodbank in Omaha. “Last fiscal year, approximately 16-percent of our inventory was purchased. So far this fiscal year, about 31-percent of the food we’ve distributed are items we’ve purchased,” Barks said. “As of right now, we are on pace to about double the amount of food we are buying.”

The decline in inventory is blamed primarily on cuts to the U.S.D.A. Commodities Program. This week, donors who bring two cans of food to participating flower shops can buy one dozen long-stemmed roses for just $10. The cans will then be delivered to a local food-distribution charity, such as the Foodbank for the Heartland. “This campaign with local flower shops is tremendous,” Barks said. “It’s one of a myriad of campaigns that we need to happen in order to keep our shelves stocked.”

This marks the 14th year for the “Caring Rose Week” effort. More information and a map of participating florists is available at www.caringrose.org.

(Radio Iowa)

Accident near Coburg Sunday afternoon

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

An accident Sunday afternoon near Coburg, in Montgomery County, caused a total of $2,500 damage, but there were no reports of injuries. According to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, a 1995 Honda Passport driven by 16-year old Teesha Mary Hardy, of Red Oak, and a 2004 Chevy Blazer, driven by 50-year old Dawn Eloise Milgrove, of Red Oak, collided at the intersection of 270th Street and Fernwood Avenue, on the east side of Coburg, at around 1:05-p.m.

Officials say the Honda was traveling east on 270th as the Blazer was heading west. As the vehicles met, their side-view mirrors hit, causing damage to both vehicles. No citations were issued.

Weekend arrests in Montgomery County

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County report the arrest of three individuals over the weekend. On Saturday, 17-year old Edward Richard Lockerby, of Prescott, was taken into custody at around 12:30-p.m., on a charge of harassment. He was brought to Montgomery County Corrections Center, booked-in, and later released to the custody of his mother. That same day, at around 1:50-p.m., 48-year old David Alan Adist, of Prescott, was arrested by Montgomery County Sheriff’s deputies, for violating a Protective Order. Adist was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on full bond.

On Sunday, 30-year old George Allen Westbrooke, of Red Oak, was arrested at around 4:30-p.m.. Westbrooke was taken into custody on a valid Adams County warrant for Burglary in the 3rd degree, Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree, and Trespassing. He was transported to the Adams County Jail and held on $5,000 cash bond.

 

Atlantic BOE to discuss but take no action on Capital Improvement Projects

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Community School District’s Board of Education (BOE) is expected to discuss, but take no immediate action on, future Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) for the district. The discussion will include Design Alliance Architect’s representative Jerry Purdy. Much of the talk is expected to revolve around the district’s need for classroom space , especially in light of a report last month by Superintendent Dr. Michael Amstein, that current enrollment numbers in kindergarten have been up, and are expected to remain nearly the same for the 2013-2014 school year.

In other business, the Atlantic BOE will act on approving: Design Alliance’ architect’s proposal for renovation projects; a bid for Driver’s Education Instruction; and, the Cass County Educational Opportunity Center (CCEOC) handbook.
The meeting begins at 7:30-p.m., in the Atlantic High School Media Center.

State sets rollback figure for property taxes

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Revenue has set the value that’s used to determine the property tax values for the state. The department’s Julie Roisen, says the “rollback” value as it is known is mandated by state law. “The rollback calculations are designed to keep agregate taxable values across the state for residential, agricultural and commercial properties, if they qualify, to keep them from growing more than four-percent statewide,” Roisen says. The taxable value was raised to 52-point-eight-one percent, compared to the previous rate of 50-point-seven-five percent in 2011 to show the changes in property value.

“The aggregate taxable value has grown, and so therefore, the local governments may see a higher collection depending on what they did with their (tax) levees,” Roisen says. County auditors use the figure set by the department to each property to compute the tax value that’s used for property taxes. “The whole idea is to keep the statewide taxable value from shooting up dramatically,” Roisen explains. “Now it does not speak to an individual particular property at a parcel level. If the assessed value of an invididual property grew dramatically for whatever reason, they would see an increase in their tax burden, because their assessed value grew, and then you apply the rollback.”

The tax values based on 2012 will be paid by property owners in fiscal year 2013-14 will not be determined until local taxing bodies establish their property tax needs early next year.

(Radio Iowa)

Trading cigarettes for carrot sticks? Thursday is the day…

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Iowans who still smoke cigarettes are the targets of this week’s Great American Smokeout, the biggest annual event to get people to kick the habit. Chuck Reed, the Iowa spokesman for the American Cancer Society, says November is National Lung Cancer Awareness Month. “When you look at the fact that cancer affects one in two men, one in three women in their lifetime, that’s such a huge number,” Reed says. “We like to remind people to get their screenings and do what they can to avoid cancer and in November, quit smoking. Tobacco use accounts for 30% of all cancers worldwide.”

Lung cancer deaths are about equal to the number of deaths from prostate, breast, colon and pancreatic cancers combined. The Smokeout is scheduled for Thursday and is in its 37th year. “Back then, it was done by a newspaper editor who just wanted people to quit for one day, just to show yourself you can do it, and since then, we’ve tweaked it a little bit,” Reed says. “We’d love for you to quit for one day but more importantly, it’s a great day to make a plan to quit for good.”

Many chapters of the American Cancer Society across Iowa are hosting special events, like offering a free cold turkey sandwich to anyone who brings in a pack of cigarettes and vows to quit. “There are those events going on around the state,” Reed says. “I encourage everyone to check your local newspaper or wherever you get your information. There’s numerous ones going on around the state. This day does get pretty good awareness about quitting smoking and hopefully, living a healthier lifestyle.” Estimates find that 23-hundred Iowans will be diagnosed with lung cancer this year and 18-hundred will die from it. Learn more at: www.cancer.org

(Radio Iowa)

Northwest Iowa teen dies in weekend rollover crash

News

November 12th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

REMSEN, Iowa (AP) — Authorities are investigating a rollover crash that killed one northwest Iowa teen and injured two others. KTIV television reports the crash happened around 2:30 Saturday afternoon in Plymouth County, Iowa. The Remsen fire department found that 17-year-old Matthew Gerrietts had been thrown from the SUV he was driving. He died at the scene. Gerrietts’ two passengers, 16-year-old Mindy Gerrietts and 15-year-old Phillip Renken, were taken to an area hospital for treatment of their injuries.

Construction worker dies in Sioux City, Iowa

News

November 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — The death of a construction worker is being investigated in Sioux City. Police say the worker died Saturday while helping build the new Sabre Industries campus in a Sioux City industrial park. The incident was reported around 1:30 p.m. Saturday. Details of how the worker died weren’t immediately available. Police did not immediately release the name of the worker who was killed.

Off-duty Police Officer hurt, Omaha man arrested in scuffle at Bluffs casino

News

November 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

An Omaha man was arrested Saturday following a scuffle with an off-duty police officer at a casino in Council Bluffs. According to the Omaha World-Herald, the unidentified officer suffered minor injuries when he was allegedly attacked by 21-year old Miles A. Adams. The incident happened at the Horseshoe Casino, at around 11-a.m., Saturday, when the officer went to investigate a report of a man acting strange in a public rest room at the Hilton Garden Inn.

The officer and at least one security guard wrestled Adams to the ground. Both Adams and the officer suffered minor cuts and scrapes during the scuffle. The were taken to Mercy Hospital for treatment. Adams was subsequently taken to the Pottawattamie County Jail on Assaulting a Police Officer, Possession of Methamphetamine, and Public Intoxication charges.

STATE INTERAGENCY GROUP HOLDS MEETING ON MO. RIVER NOV. 14

News

November 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Flood recovery, appropriate prioritization of flood control in river management and water allocation are the top items on the agenda for the State Interagency Missouri River Authority’s Nov. 14th meeting in Council Bluffs. The Iowa DNR says the group will get an update on the continuing dry conditions, and in a related matter, will discuss two U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ reports.

One report provides a five-year plan for managing surplus water in the Missouri River system of reservoirs. The other is a report on the corps’ start-up efforts to change the permanent allocation of Missouri River water for municipal and industrial use. Also on the agenda are updates from the state hydrology work group, the sediment management meeting, the county official coalition and a committee working on the Missouri River Recovery. MidAmerican Energy will discuss its perspective on operation of the river.

The Missouri River Authority is an interagency, interstate group that makes recommendations on policies affecting the Missouri River. The group will meet from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Iowa School for the Deaf, Lied Multipurpose Complex, 3501 Harry Langdon Boulevard, Council Bluffs. The meeting is open to the public.

Interested persons can attend the meeting on a conference call by dialing 866-685-1580. Then they should follow the prompts, typing in the conference code of 4510673319 followed by the pound (#) sign.