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Griswold hosting 138th annual Old Soldiers Reunion

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – The 138th annual Old Soldiers Reunion takes place this weekend, in Griswold. The annual Military March into the town begins just outside the city limits at 4:15-p.m., Saturday. Landon Peterson is a member American Legion Post 508 in Griswold. “Veterans, families of veterans (and) our theme is ‘Hometown Heroes’ so law enforcement, fire and EMS — anybody who is involved in that is welcome to join in our road march.”

Tractors will be parked on Cass Street in Griswold for a tractor show that starts at 8 a.m. Saturday. Peterson says that’s been a popular part of the annual event for the tractor owners AND members of the community. “That’s something that they’ve always been done and they were really excited to know that we were going to continue with the reunion so they didn’t have to miss one, because they really enjoy that,” Peterson says.

Other events at this year’s Old Soldiers Reunion include a parade and a street dance on Saturday night.

Search for missing brain cancer patient continues

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – The search for a former Wartburg College music instructor who left a Waterloo care facility Monday night is entering its fourth day. Authorities have been looking for 46-year-old Michael Jensen of Waverly since he escaped from Ravenwood Specialty Care through a window. Jensen’s wife, Jen, says her husband was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2012. “He’s had diminished capacity since 2016,” Jen Jansen says. “Mostly from the brain cancer and complications from the treatments.”

Michael Jensen

Jensen says the past few months have been extremely difficult on the family. Jensen and the couple’s three daughters, one of whom just graduated from Waverly-Shell Rock High School, haven’t been able to visit Michael because pandemic restrictions. “He’s been in a nursing home for two years with cooperative care,” Jensen says. “… To be quite honest, with COVID, we’ve been at the end of our rope. It had been 121 days on Monday since I’ve seen him and been able to hug him.”

Authorities believe Michael Mitchell may be trying to return to the family’s home in Waverly. Nearly 50 volunteers showed up in Janesville Thursday to help look for him and they spent the morning searching property between Cedar Falls and Waverly before severe weather ended the effort around noon. Mitchell says she’s extremely grateful for the support her family has received from friends and strangers. “When I drove in the parking lot, I had to a minute to have a good cry,” Jensen says. “It’s overwhelming to see … a parking lot full of volunteers, who are taking their summer day.”

Firefighters and first-responders went door-to-door in Janesville Thursday night. Even though there have been no signs of Mitchell since he disappeared, Jen Jensen is confident he will be found.”We’re going to find him,” Jensen says. “I have so much confidence in this law enforcement team. Waterloo P.D. has been fantastic and homeland security has been wonderful.”

The search for Jensen will resume at 9 AM today. Volunteers should report to the Incident Command Center at the Island Park Boat House in Cedar Falls.

Test Iowa passes 100,000 tests conducted mark

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – This week the state’s Test Iowa program has passed the 100-thousand mark in number of tests conducted. Governor Kim Reynolds announced in April that a group of Utah companies were being paid 26-million dollars to supply the test kits. The first Test Iowa site opened April 25th in Des Moines.  “Last week, Test Iowa sites across the state surpassed the capacity of 3000 tests per day,” Reynolds says.

There are now 20 “Test Iowa” sites in the state. Some are drive-through sites. Others are set up in partnership with local hospitals and clinics. According to the governor, 21 percent of the COVID-19 tests that have been done in Iowa since March have been run through the Test Iowa program. Reynolds says Test Iowa is currently the state’s number one source for tests. “As demand for testing continues to grow, Test Iowa appointments are filling up quickly, so even though we’ve far exceeded our capacity for the past two weeks, we’re mindful that we can push our capacity limits only so far,” Reynolds says. “While our volume of tests are in good supply, we are considering different ways to adjust operations at some of our test sites and at the State Hygenic Lab so that we can further expand capacity to meet the demands of Iowans that want to be tested.”

Iowans must use the Test Iowa app or call to schedule an appointment time for a COVID-19 test. Sites in Des Moines and Waukee account for 40 percent of the tests conducted through the Test Iowa program this month.

(Podcast) KJAN 8-a.m. News, 7/10/20

News, Podcasts

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

More State and area news from KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

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(Podcast) KJAN Morning News & Funeral report, 7/10/20

News, Podcasts

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

The area’s latest and/or top news stories at 7:05-a.m. From KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

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Iowa COVID-19 update (7/10/2020)

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

In the Iowa Department of Public Health’s Coronavirus update today (Friday, 10-a.m.), officials report: Three more people have died from COVID-19 (for a total of 742); Officials say 358,394 have been tested for the virus to-date, with the number of positive cases up 744 to 33,756. There were 7,972 Iowans tested Thursday, another new single-day record. One of 9 Iowans have been tested for the virus and 1 of 94 have tested positive. Negative cases stand at 326,822; and, 25,750 Iowans have recovered from the virus.

Iowa’s hospitalization rates have been increasing since the beginning of July after a long period of decline. IDPH reported 169 current patients with COVID-19, up from 168 the previous day. There are 54 patients listed in intensive care, up from 49 the previous day. There are 26 patients on ventilators, equal to the previous day. There were 19 patients admitted in the last 24 hours, down from 32 the previous day. In southwest/western Iowa RMCC Region 4: Five people are hospitalized (2 less than yesterday); 4 are in an ICU; none were admitted to a hospital, and there was no one on a ventilator. Long-Term Care (LTC) facility data show: 15 current outbreaks; 282 residents/staff tested positive for COVID-19; 87 have recovered, and there have been 392 deaths to-date.

County-by-County COVID-19 cases, and the number of person who have recovered (   ).

  • Cass: 27 (19)
  • Adair: 16 (12)
  • Adams: 8 (8)
  • Audubon: 16 (15)
  • Guthrie: 72 (57)
  • Montgomery: 11 (8)
  • Pottawattamie: 796 (655)
  • Shelby: 119 [2 more than on Thursday] (105)

New federal program lets qualified Iowa meat lockers sell meat across state lines

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – A meat locker in Story City is the first in Iowa to be allowed to sell its products to customers in other states. A new federal program lets state-inspected lockers get a U-S-D-A stamp on processed meat, so it can be sold across state lines. Iowa Agriculture Secretary Mike Naig says this opens up new markets for Iowa meat lockers as well as livestock and poultry producers.  “Iowa’s got a great brand for agriculture, as we know, and specially for meat production and so we think that’s something that
we think can perform very well really all across the country,” Naig says.

This could broaden the range of Iowa beef, pork and poultry sold to restaurants in cities like Chicago and beyond that promote the farm-to-table concept. It also means Iowa-branded meat could be sold in regional grocery stores.  “Over the last couple of months we’ve had a lot of focus on the food and agriculture supply chain and meat in particular and so I think there’s a lot of interest on the part of consumers and restaurants and really all across the board in more options when it comes to sourcing meat,” Naig says, “and we’ve seen that in the fact that our meat lockers are very, very busy and we like that we think that there’s an upside for them to stay busy.”

Naig and his staff worked for nearly a year to ensure all state regulations and inspections met the federal program requirements. It meant buying some new equipment and additional training for the state’s meat and poultry inspectors. “It does also require USDA to come into those lockers from time to time,” Naig says, “but the day-to-day, ongoing operational inspections will be conducted by our team.”

Meat processing businesses that have fewer than 25 full-time employees can sign up for the federal program. Al’s Country Meat Locker in Calmar and Ohrt’s Smokehouse in Ionia have also qualified for the program. Naig says dozen other meat lockers that are eligible have applied.  “This is where I think there’s an opportunity: one for those existing meat lockers to expand, maybe hire some additional staff, make some equipment investments and some facility investments,” Naig says. “And we are hearing, too, of some real interest in some new facilities and folks getting into the business, so that’s an exciting thing for us to look at — expanding this market opportunity and the economic development that goes along with it.”

There are a couple of hundred meat lockers in the state and 68 of them are eligible for this federal program.

Warrants issued for NE man involved in Iowa pursuit

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Police in Council Bluffs report a warrant has been issued for 23-year old Raymundo Rafael Silva-Gomez, of Bellevue, NE., associated with a pursuit that began with a traffic stop. Police tried to stop a beige Cadillac near 535th and Ronald Road at around 5-p.m., Thursday, when the failed vehicle to pull over. Officers eventually discontinued the pursuit.

The vehicle was involved in a crash at 13th and Missouri Avenue, in Omaha. Silva-Gomez was identified as – the suspected driver.

Iowa early News Headlines: Friday, July 10, 2020

News

July 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press at 3:40 a.m. CDT

UNDATED (AP) — Worker advocates have filed a civil rights complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture alleging that meat processing companies Tyson and JBS have engaged in racial discrimination during the coronavirus pandemic. The complaint filed Wednesday alleges the meatpacking companies haven’t implemented appropriate social distancing on production lines or slowed production speeds. As a result, it says, Hispanic, Black and Asian workers have suffered. The complaint alleges the policies violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which protects individuals from racial discrimination by recipients of federal financial assistance. The companies have together received more than $150 million from USDA programs this year.

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — A federal appeals court says a Davenport officer who stomped on the ankle of a suspect used unreasonable force but nonetheless cannot be held liable. The 2015 stomp by officer Brian Stevens allegedly broke the ankle of suspect Juan Shelton, who was pinned down by five officers at the time. The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals says that Stevens enjoys qualified immunity and therefore cannot be sued for excessive force. The court says that it was unreasonable for Stevens to stomp on Shelton’s ankle under the circumstances, but that officers cannot be held liable for such split-second decisions.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Joe Biden’s presidential campaign has tapped a senior team in Iowa. It’s a sign that Democrats see the state where Republican Donald Trump beat them handily in 2016 as within reach. The campaign told The Associated Press that Biden is naming veteran Democratic operative Jackie Norris as his senior adviser of a team in Iowa. Joining Norris as Biden’s Iowa campaign director is Lauren Dillon, who directed Amy Klobuchar’s Iowa caucus campaign. Trump beat Hillary Clinton by 9 percentage points in the state four years ago. A competitive race in Iowa likely signals trouble for Trump in states he won by smaller margins.

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The U.S. energy boom and strong backing from President Donald Trump propelled a major expansion of the nation’s sprawling oil and gas pipeline network in the past decade. But mounting political pressure and legal setbacks have put its future growth in doubt — even as the pandemic saps demand for fuel. Two major oil pipelines in the Midwest suffered courtroom blows this week and utilities in the Southeast cancelled plans for an $8 billion gas transmission line. Industry executives acknowledge their opponents have found some success in the courts, but say demand will rebound and pipelines are the safest way to move oil.

11th confirmed COVID-19 case in Montgomery County

News

July 9th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Health officials in Montgomery County, Thursday, said an 11th case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in the county. The latest case is an adult age 18-to-40, who is currently in isolation. According to the latest data, eight persons affected by the virus in Montgomery County have recovered, and two people have died.

Serology test results show as of July 9th, three individuals were positive for COVID-19 and 70 tested negative, out of a total 73 serology tests.