Leg spasm causes accident in Red Oak Monday afternoon

News

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A leg spasm is said to have been the blame for a two-vehicle accident Monday afternoon, in Red Oak. According to Red Oak Police, vehicles driven by 46-year old Jeffrey Hawkins, of Independence, MO., and 40-year old Sarah Anderson, of Hastings, collided at the intersection of Highway 48 and Broadway Street at around 12:20-p.m.

The accident happened as both vehicles were heading south on North Broadway, and were stopped at the traffic light. Officials say Anderson told officers she had a leg spasm, causing her to step on the gas. Her 2000 Ford F-250 pickup hit the rear of Hawkins’ 2008 Chevy pickup, causing $8,500 damage altogether. Anderson hit her lip on the steering wheel of her truck, but refused medical treatment.

Authorities cited Anderson for Unsafe starting of a stopped vehicle.

Judge: Iowa teen competent to stand trial for the murder of his foster brother

News

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

LOGAN, Iowa (AP) — A judge has declared an Iowa teen competent to stand trial for the murder of his 5-year-old foster brother. District Court Judge Judge Kathleen Kilnoski said Monday, an evaluation of 18-year-old Cody Metzker-Madsen showed that he understands the charges against him and can actively participate in his defense.

The Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil reports that Metzker-Madsen is charged with first-degree murder for the death of Dominic Elkins, of Atlantic. Authorities say Dominic was killed while the boys were playing outdoors on Aug. 31 at their home near Logan, in western Iowa. Dominic died as a result of blunt-force head injuries and drowning.  Metzker-Madsen has pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Psychology experts who examined the teen say he has developmental problems. Metzker-Madsen’s mother used methamphetamine during her pregnancy with him.

NWS Forecast for Cass & area Counties in Iowa: 4/21/2014

Weather

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

346 AM CDT TUE APR 22 2014

EARLY THIS MORNING…CLEAR…COLDER. NORTH WIND 5 TO 10 MPH.

TODAY…SUNNY. HIGH IN THE UPPER 60S. NORTHEAST WIND 5 TO 10 MPH.

TONIGHT…PARTLY CLOUDY UNTIL EARLY MORNING THEN BECOMING MOSTLY CLOUDY. LOW IN THE MID 40S. SOUTHEAST WIND 5 TO 10 MPH. GUSTS UP TO 20 MPH AFTER MIDNIGHT.

WEDNESDAY…MOSTLY CLOUDY. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS IN THE MORNING…THEN A SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS IN THE AFTERNOON. WINDY. HIGH IN THE UPPER 60S. SOUTHEAST WIND 15 TO 20 MPH INCREASING TO 20 TO 30 MPH IN THE AFTERNOON. GUSTS UP TO 40 MPH. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 30 PERCENT.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT...THUNDERSTORMS LIKELY THROUGH MIDNIGHT…THEN THUNDERSTORMS AFTER MIDNIGHT. BREEZY. LOW IN THE MID 50S. SOUTHEAST WIND 15 TO 25 MPH. GUSTS UP TO 35 MPH THROUGH MIDNIGHT. CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS 90 PERCENT.

THURSDAY…MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS IN THE MORNING…THEN MOSTLY SUNNY IN THE AFTERNOON. BREEZY. HIGH IN THE UPPER 60S. WEST WIND 15 TO 20 MPH WITH GUSTS TO AROUND 30 MPH. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 30 PERCENT.

THURSDAY NIGHT THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT…PARTLY CLOUDY. LOW IN THE LOWER 40S. HIGH IN THE UPPER 60S.

Regulators not taking a stance on end of greyhound racing

News

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

This could be the final week of the legislative session and one thing that’s still not decided is if there will be an agreement to end greyhound racing. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission oversees the operation of the tracks, but commission chair, Jeff Lamberti, says their only role is to carry out whatever plan is passed. “We’ll do whatever the legislature tells us to — in terms of if they reach an agreement and it’s given to us to decide how to disperse the funds — we’ll do the best job that we can,” Lamberti says. “We have provided some input that we would hope that the legislature would give us a little guidance.”

A committee in the Iowa House passed a bill that would allow for a payout to end greyhound racing. Representatives of the tracks in Council Bluffs and Dubuque have been working the casinos to try and come to an agreement to close the tracks. Lamberti says the commission will only get involved once the issue is decided. “We really don’t take a position on whether dog racing should continue, shouldn’t continue, we’ll just follow what the law is. And if they give us responsibility because they do reach an agreement, then we’ll administer that to the best our ability” Lamberti says.

Those pushing to close the dog tracks say nobody goes to the races anymore and the casinos are subsidizing their operation to the tune of 13 million dollars each year. Legislators say a deal to end racing would likely have the two casinos pay a “cessation fee” to end racing and also pay into a multi-million dollar “retirement fund” for greyhound owners and breeders in Iowa.

(Radio Iowa)

USDA unveils Rural Business Investment Program

Ag/Outdoor, News

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was in Cedar Rapids Monday afternoon to tout an effort by his agency to create jobs in rural America. The former Iowa governor said the new Rural Business Investment Program (RBIP) will allow the USDA to facilitate private equity investments in ag-related businesses. “It’ll be at least $150 million and those resources can then be used to purchase interests in small businesses that want to expand and scale up product,” Vilsack said. “It’s an opportunity to get more capitol into rural areas.”

Eight Farm Credit institutions have pledged to invest $150 million into the new program. Vilsack said, over the past decade, USDA programs to help rural businesses have only involved loans or loan guarantees. “The bottom line here is about a new way to do business for government, where we facilitate, bridge, and leverage as opposed to solely relying on government financing to do it all,” Vilsack said. The ag secretary is promising more programs to help rural America will be rolled out in the coming months.

For instance, a Rural Opportunity Investment Conference is being planned for this summer. The event is designed to connect major investors with rural business leaders, government officials, economic development experts and other partners. “We’ll have every federal agency that has projects…like, we have water projects that we don’t have enough money to fund because of budget constraints. Those water projects may be something an investment bank might be interest in because it’s a fairly stable return. So, we’re going to match their money to projects we know are available and out there in rural America,” Vilsack said.

Vilsack discussed the USDA programs Monday during a stop at Central Iowa Power Cooperative in Cedar Rapids.

(Radio Iowa)

KC Chiefs football News

Sports

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Chiefs are speaking with representatives of quarterback Alex Smith about an extension that would keep him in Kansas City beyond next season. Smith said Monday that his agent, Tom Condon, has been talking with the team about a new contract. Smith is due to make $7.5 million in the final year of a contract signed in 2012, when he was still with the San Francisco 49ers.

Chiefs general manager John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid have both expressed their desire to keep Smith in Kansas City, but his play last season underscored his value. Smith completed 66 percent of his passes with a career-best 23 touchdowns and only seven interceptions while leading a team that had been 2-14 to an 11-5 record and the playoffs.

*******

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Chiefs have gathered for the start of offseason workouts, giving coach Andy Reid an opportunity to provide an update on issues ranging from injuries to potential starters. Reid said Monday that Eric Fisher, who will slide from right tackle to left tackle, had surgery on his left shoulder and to repair a sports hernia. Reid also said safety Sanders Commings had surgery for an undisclosed injury and has been cleared to work out.

The Chiefs will have to replace the tandem of Jon Asamoah and Geoff Schwartz at right guard and Kendrick Lewis at free safety. Reid said that Rishaw Johnson will get the first shot at the offensive line spot and that Husain Abdullah is the front-runner for the safety job.

Unger chosen as GM for Cards’ Triple-A affiliate

Sports

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Craig Unger has been hired as general manager of the Memphis Redbirds as the St. Louis Cardinals take over daily management of their Triple-A affiliate. Unger joined the Cardinals organization in 2008. He helped return the team’s radio broadcasts to KMOX, served as field producer for the 2009 All-Star game at Busch Stadium and coordinated the 2011 World Series victory parade. Unger is moving permanently to the Memphis area, where he’s spent the past few months assisting in the ownership transition.

Unger said “this is a special moment in our team’s history, with the best days ahead of us,” in a statement Monday announcing his appointment. Ben Weiss, who had been the Redbirds’ general manager since 2009, is now a senior adviser assisting Unger in daily management of the team.

Mejia sharp, leads Wright, Mets over Cardinals 2-0

Sports

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

NEW YORK (AP) — Jenrry Mejia pitched four-hit ball into the seventh inning, David Wright delivered another key hit and the New York Mets beat the St. Louis Cardinals 2-0 Monday night. Wright lined an early RBI single that extended his hitting streak to 12 games and Kyle Farnsworth earned his first save as the New York’s newest closer.

On an evening when the Mets debuted new camouflage tops to salute the military, they looked sharp. The Cardinals lost for the third time in four games. Mejia bounced back well from a torn blister on his right middle finger that limited him to five innings in his last start. The 24-year-old righty began the game by getting Matt Carpenter to look at three straight strikes, and rarely was in trouble.

Cardinals promote LHP Lyons, start him vs Mets

Sports

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

NEW YORK (AP) — The St. Louis Cardinals have promoted left-hander Tyler Lyons from Triple-A Memphis and are starting him against the New York Mets. The 26-year-old Lyons was set to pitch Monday night at Citi Field. Right-handed reliever Jorge Rondon was optioned to Triple-A. Lyons will take the rotation spot held by Joe Kelly, who was put on the 15-disabled list last week. Kelly strained his left hamstring trying to beat out a bunt.

Lyons went 2-4 with a 4.75 ERA in 12 games for St. Louis last year, including eight starts for the NL champions. He made his major league debut last season and was with the Cardinals during four separate stints. He was 2-0 with a 3.32 ERA in three starts at Memphis this year. He last pitched on Wednesday.

Iowa early News Headlines: Tue., April 22nd, 2014

News

April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — State and local economic development officials in central Iowa have come up with a brand name and logo for the region in an effort to create an identity similar to that of Silicon Valley in California. The “Cultivation Corridor” area within a 60-mile radius of Des Moines will focus on the marketing of agribusiness, biotechnology and renewable fuel products.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — State officials say 16 Iowa towns that received loans for water quality projects will end up saving money because of interest rate cuts. The Iowa Finance Authority and the Department of Natural Resources says those towns will see a combined savings of $1.5 million over the life of their loans. They have been paying 3 percent interest on the loans, but rates are being lowered 1.75 percent.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Lucey, an 18-month old pooch from Waukee, Iowa, has beaten out 49 drooling competitors to take this year’s “Beautiful Bulldog” pageant. Monday’s tongue-in-cheek event is designed to kick off the weeklong Drake Relays, an internationally-renowned track and field event in Des Moines. Lucey was certainly a hit with the crowd at Drake’s Knapp Center, besting a pair of boys named Lord Nelson and Zuul to capture top honors.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Auditor Mary Mosiman says she’s reviewing the secret settlement payments with former state workers and will issue a public report when the investigation is finished. Democratic candidate for governor Jack Hatch wants a review of the settlements and a broader audit from a firm outside state government. Governor Terry Branstad appointed Mosiman last year.