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2 men arrested on drug &/or alcohol charges in Villisca


October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop late Friday night in Villisca resulted in the arrest of two men on drug and/or alcohol charges. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports deputies pulled over a 2005 Ford Fusion at around 11:25-p.m., and as the result of an investigation conducted with the assistance of the K9 “Rex” and his partner, arrested 20-year old Darryk James Leu, of Malvern, for Unlawful Possession of Prescription Medications. A passenger in the car, 21-year old Cody Benjamin Johnson, of Stanton, was arrested for Possession of a Controlled Substance and Open Container as a passenger.

Both men were brought to the Montgomery County Jail and held on $1,000 bond, each.

Time to set clocks back an hour Saturday night


October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska and Iowa residents are being reminded to set their clocks back an hour before going to sleep Saturday. Standard time returns this weekend at 2 a.m. Sunday. The change means most Americans will get an extra hour of rest, but those working overnight shifts might toil an hour longer. It also means some will forget to change their clocks, and show up early for church or other events on Sunday.

Daylight Saving Time returns to Nebraska and Iowa in March. Not everyone in the United States makes the switch from standard time. The exceptions are Hawaii, most of Arizona, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Marianas.

Iowa officials: Skilled labor training on brink of overhaul


October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Officials say Iowa’s system for teaching career and technical training could be on the brink of a major overhaul, but they add it’s too early to tell how much the potential changes could cost and who should pay for them. Career and technical education, once known as vocational education, is essentially skilled training for work that will require more than a high school diploma. The terms encapsulate numerous fields and industries.

An education task force released a report recently that offers recommendations to expand the way such training is offered in the state. Officials, including Gov. Terry Branstad, have announced plans to counter a shortage in skilled labor with a renowned focus on training opportunities. Officials say such education efforts can’t be broken down yet into costs.

Don’t make your haunted front yard cemetery too scary


October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Many Iowans have fun at Halloween by creating scary haunted attractions in their front yards, often involving an impromptu cemetery, headstones and skeletons to frighten trick-or-treaters. Liz Dorland, spokeswoman for the American Red Cross chapter in Council Bluffs, suggests you keep your scary display age-appropriate. “With Halloween, there are always some added dangers we’re not necessarily used to and things that could spook a child to run into a street,” Dorland says. “Make sure you are paying attention to what may be overly frightening.”

Dorland offers a few tips for those who will be staying at home, manning the candy dish and waiting for the doorbell to ring. “Make sure the outdoor lights are on, sweep all the leaves from the sidewalks and the steps, clear the front porch of any obstacles the trick-or-treaters might get hung up on,” Dorland says. “Don’t forget to restrain your pets. Sometimes dogs may rush the door. That might scare some of the children and frighten them to run into the street.”

Parents need to take a few minutes to talk to their kids about safety before heading out the door to trick-or-treat. Dorland says it’s especially important for older children who won’t be accompanied by an adult.  “Plan the route with the children so they know it, they know the safe areas and the homes that should be visited,” she says. “They also know how to get back home so we don’t have any lost trick-or-treaters.” A few other tips: Make sure kids only trick-or-treat at homes where the porch light is on, and tell them to accept treats only at the door, never go inside. Take along a flashlight. Only use battery-operated candles inside jack-o-lanterns instead of real candles where the flame could be a hazard. And if you’ll be on the road, take it slow as there will be plenty of pedestrians.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA commits $240,000 to water quality initiative near Oakland

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The U-S-D-A’s Natural Resources Conservation Service has committed a quarter of a million dollars over the next year for a western Iowa water quality project. U-S Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says the money will be used on conservation measures in the watershed that drains into Slocum Creek, about a mile away from the city of Oakland, in Pottawattamie County.

“Basically we know from an analysis of the upper Mississippi River basin that these combined conservation practices are effective in reducing nitrogen, phosphorus and in reducing soil erosion, so we obviously want to continue to focus on their targeted effort,” Vilsack says.

State officials have rated Oakland’s water supply as “highly susceptible” to contamination and Oakland gets its drinking water from underground aquifers in the watershed where this project is focused. Vilsack says the Slocum Creek project is part of his agency’s water quality initiative in the entire upper Mississippi River basin.

Slocum Creek drains into the Missouri River, which ultimately reaches the Mississippi River at St. Louis. The U.S.D.A. is spending 30-million dollars on 33 projects in the upper Mississippi River basin. “The key here is to obviously reduce the amount of soil erosion that takes place and that carries with it nitrogen and phosphorus — both that which is applied and nitrates which are organically produced — which, ultimately, get into the Mississippi,” Vilsack says.

The Natural Resources Conservation Service plans to spend 240-thousand dollars this year and another 450-thousand dollars on the Slocum Creek project in western Iowa over the next two years.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines for Sat., Oct. 31st, 2015


October 31st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

NEVADA, Iowa (AP) — DuPont is announcing the opening of an ethanol plant that will make the fuel additive from cornstalks, leaves and cobs instead of the grain itself. The $225 million refinery in central Iowa is touted as the world’s largest cellulosic ethanol plant, which is designed to make 30 million gallons annually once it’s in full production next year.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — Davenport police have arrested a man in connection with a Waterloo incident that resulted in officers shooting him as he drove away from a bar. Officers arrested 28-year-old Jovan Webb on Thursday, charging him with several offenses, including assault on a police officer and using a dangerous weapon.

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A judge has postponed the trial of a Pittsburgh man charged with robbing and killing two sisters of an Iowa state lawmaker last year. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports Allegheny County Judge Edward Borkowski criticized prosecutors and defense attorneys for not being prepared to try the case of 44-year-old Allen Wade starting Monday. Instead, jury selection will begin in late February. The women were the sisters of Democratic Iowa state Representative Mary Wolfe.

CHICAGO (AP) — By every measure, Marco Rubio’s bid for the Republican nomination has grown more robust in October. It was boosted again by his strong showing in Wednesday night’s debate. The campaign’s fundraising just finished its best month yet. In the hours around the debate, Rubio raised $750,000 online.

Children’s Hospital & Medical Center to Offer Pediatric Cardiology Clinic in Atlantic


October 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Children with heart conditions in southwest Iowa will soon be able to receive high-quality pediatric specialty care closer to home. Officials with the Cass County Health System say Children’s Hospital & Medical Center will offer a pediatric cardiology clinic quarterly at Cass County Memorial Hospital in Atlantic, beginning Friday, Nov. 13th.

The new cardiac outreach clinic will be Children’s first in Iowa. Children’s cardiology team also provides outreach clinics in Rapid City and Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and in the following Nebraska communities: Columbus, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Lincoln, Norfolk and North Platte. Pediatric cardiologist Robert Spicer, M.D., Children’s clinical service chief of Cardiology, will travel to Atlantic to see patients, along with a cardiology nurse and cardiac sonographer. The partnership between Children’s in Omaha and Cass County Health in Atlantic was designed to make care more convenient and accessible for area families.

Beyond the convenience and familiarity the visiting specialists provide families, outreach clinics allow Children’s the opportunity to foster better working relationships with referring doctors and hospitals. Children’s Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Heart Center offers the region’s largest and most comprehensive pediatric and adult congenital cardiac and cardiac surgical care, including expertise in pediatric heart transplantation and adult congenital heart disease (ACHD). Children’s could potentially see adults with ACHD at its Atlantic clinic, as well.

To make an appointment in Atlantic, please call 712-243-7590.

Second annual Holiday Harvest Market set for 11/23/15 – Vendor Space Available!

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Community Center, in Atlantic, will be transformed into a bustling holiday market on Monday, November 23rd from 3:30- to 7:30-pm, for the second annual Holiday Harvest Market. Fresh, locally grown produce will be available for your Thanksgiving gatherings. And, get some help with your holiday baking from southwest Iowa bakers.

You’ll also find unique holiday gifts made by local crafters for special people on your gift list. Samples will be available from vendors, guest chefs and recipe contest entrants for shoppers to enjoy as they browse. Fun activities for youth, voting on local recipe contest winners and seasonal music will make this an event the whole family can enjoy.

Vendor spaces are still available, and any local farmers, bakers, artisans or crafters are invited to sign up. The event was very well attended last year, and received excellent reviews from attendees and vendors alike. Vendors interested in participating can find details and a registration form online at http://www.extension.iastate.edu/cass or http://www.atlanticiowa.com>. Vendor booth spaces are available at $20 each.

Local residents with a favorite seasonal recipe are invited to share it, and possibly win a prize, by entering the Best of Market Recipe Contest. Entries will be judged by their use of local, seasonal ingredients- whether they be produce, meat, eggs, grains, or preserved foods. Recipes will be judged by a panel of local celebrities, as well as by popular vote from market attendees for the People’s Choice award. If you have a favorite recipe, but aren’t sure where to find a local vendor, you can check a list of local producers registered for the market online to find what you are looking for. A full list of vendors, information on the recipe contest, as well as other activities and special events will be posted online at the Cass County Extension website.

The Holiday Harvest Market is sponsored by Farmers Markets of Cass County, Cass County Local Food Policy Council, and City of Atlantic Community Promotions Commission. The event is endorsed by the Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce.

Adair & Guthrie County EMAs adds UTV to support Local Resources


October 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Adair County Emergency Management Coordinator Robert Kempf reports the Adair & Guthrie County Emergency Management Agencies have added a Polaris Ranger UTV to the resources available to local responders and jurisdictions in Adair & Guthrie Counties. The Ranger is equipped with a Kimtek MedBed for the transport of injured or sick medical patients and a radio for communications with other responders and both dispatch centers in the counties. The equipment is transported on a 14-foot equipment trailer. The equipment has been used by local responders at least 10 days each month since it arrived in middle July.

Each year, local responders and government officials have times that they are in need of an off road vehicle, smaller vehicle. They need it for searches for missing individuals, inspection of crime scene, monitoring crowds and responding to medical issues at local events to name just a few.

Kempf said “Several of the Law Enforcement, Fire and EMS Departments have considered purchasing this type of equipment over the years. The cost for the equipment was too much for most departments. Having one set of equipment available to all department was a much more fiscal solution.”

The cost of the equipment totaled approximately $28,000.00. Many local entities helped in the financing of the equipment. Contributions to the cost were received from the Schildberg Foundation ($15,000.00), Guthrie County Community Foundation ($5,000.00) and West Central Coop (1,500.00). Guthrie County Emergency Management provided the radio valued at $2,000.00. The remaining $4,500.00 was paid for out of the Adair & Guthrie County Emergency Management budgets that are supported by the 14 towns and 2 counties.

Jeremy Cooper, Chairman of the Guthrie County Emergency Management Commission, said “This project would not have been possible without the cooperation of both the private and public sector’s working together in our counties” said, “That is what emergency management is about, everyone working together to plan for, respond to and recover from disasters and emergencies.”

Kempf added “The jurisdictions and local responder departments can contact my office to reserve to equipment for use at community events. The equipment is always available 24/7/365 for use in emergency situation through the county dispatch centers.”

Omaha trucker injured in Crawford County semi rollover


October 30th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A truck driver from Nebraska was injured this (Friday) morning when the semi he was driving crashed into a ditch and rolled onto its side, in Crawford County. The Iowa State Patrol says 43-year old Christopher Evans, of Omaha, who was wearing a seat belt, was transported to the Manning Regional Hospital by Crawford County Ambulance following the accident that happened at around 8:35-a.m. A report on his condition is not available.

The Patrol reports the crash occurred after Evans, who was driving a 1999 Peterbilt westbound on Highway 141, attempted to pass a non-contact, 2001 Case tractor pulling a wagon, and driven by 63-year old Ronald Halbur, of Manning. The tractor was attempting to turn south onto 370th Street and crossed the centerline of the road to merge into the left lane, when the semi went to pass on the left. When the semi entered the south ditch, the trailer hit the embankment off 370th and the semi ended-up on its left side on 370th.

Halbur wasn’t injured during the accident.