4-2 NEWS

A VARIETY OF ISSUES WILL GO BEFORE THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY SUPERVISORS AT ITS MEETING TOMORROW. THE BOARD WILL DISCUSS G-I-S, I-T AND METRONET UPDATES. THE BOARD WILL ALSO HEAR FROM LANDFILL MANAGER T.J. SCHISSELL ON A NEW EMPLOYEE AND FROM COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT COORDINATOR SEAN SNYDER. A PUBLIC HEARING WILL BE HELD ON THE RE-ZONING OF THE MASHEK PROPERTY. THE MEETING WILL BEGIN AT NINE-30 AT THE COURTHOUSE IN DECORAH.

THE NORTHEAST IOWA CHAPTER OF ONE HUNDRED PLUS WOMEN WHO CARE WILL HOLD ITS FIRST MEETING THIS WEEK. KIM BONNETT (BON-IT) IS WITH THE LOCAL GROUP.

BONNETT

THE GROUP WILL DETERMINE ONE LOCAL CHARITY TO MAKE A DONATION TO.

THE NEW MINOWA PLAYERS WILL PUT ON A PRODUCTION NEXT WEEKEND. SHERYL SCHEFFERT (SHEFF-FERT) WITH THE NEW MINOWA PLAYERS SAYS THEY WILL PRESENT THE LOVE SONG OF J. ROBERT OPPENHEIMER (OPP-PEN-HIME-ER).

SCHEFFERT

PERFORMANCES WILL BE HELD THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY. TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE AT THE NEW MINOWA PLAYERS WEBSITE AND AT THE ONEOTA CO-OP/

For the second time in two years, people in the Central Community School District will vote on a bond issue that would raise taxes. That district in Clayton County says it desperately needs the money, which supporters say will benefit the entire area. In 2015, the majority of voters said “no” to issuing a $6.85 million bond. Tuesday, the district will ask voters to approve $6 million. Bob Griffith checked with the Clayton County Assessor who, he says, said the bond issue would mean a $135 per year property tax increase for his home worth $109,000.

4-1 NEWS

A BASKETBALL GAME BETWEEN DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL FACULTY AND STAFF AND MEMBERS OF THE DECORAH FIRE AND POLICE DEPARTMENTS WILL BE HELD TONIGHT. BEN LESCHENSKY WITH THE DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL NATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY SAYS THEY’RE RAISING MONEY FOR AN OUTDOOR CLASSROOM AT D-H-S.

LESCHENSKY

THE GAME WILL BEGIN AT SIX-30 AT DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL.
A GROUP OF DECORAH MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS WILL PUT ON A PLAY TO CELEBRATE THE 150 YEAR HISTORY OF DECORAH’S PORTER HOUSE TONIGHT. CAM FORDE IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE PORTER HOUSE BOARD.

FORDE

THE PLAY WILL BEGIN AT FIVE-30 AT THE CARRIE LEE AUDITORIUM. IT IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

THE ROBERT WOOD JOHNSON FOUNDATION AND THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN POPULATION HEALTH INSTITUTE IS OUT WITH ITS COUNTY-BY-COUNTY HEALTH RANKINGS FOR IOWA. WINNESHIEK COUNTY IS RANKED AS ONE OF THE HEALTHIEST COUNTIES IN THE STATE ACCORDING TO SURVEY. WINNESHIEK COUNTY IS THE NUMBER ONE COUNTY IN THE STATE WHEN IT COMES TO HEALTH FACTORS, BASED ON WEIGHTED SCORES FOR HEALTH BEHAVIORS, CLINICAL CARE, SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC FACTORS AND THE PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT. WHEN IT COMES TO HEALTH OUTCOMES, BASED ON AN EQUAL WEIGHTING OF LENGTH AND QUALITY OF LIFE, WINNESHIEK COUNTY RANKS SECOND IN THE STATE. OTHER AREAS COUNTIES RANKING IN THE TOP 20 IN THE STATE IN HEALTH OUTCOMES INCLUDE CHICKASAW FOURTH, HOWARD 12TH AND CLAYTON 18TH.

LUTHER COLLEGE OFFICIALS ANNOUNCED THURSDAY THEY WILL NOT OFFER LAND AT THE INTERSECTION OF COLLEGE DRIVE AND RIDGE ROAD AS A POTENTIAL LOCATION FOR A DECORAH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL. DECORAH SCHOOLS SUPERINTENDENT MIKE HALUSKA SAYS THE DISTRICT IS DOWN TO CONSIDERING ONE SITE, THE CITY OWNED PROPERTY ON CLAIBORNE DRIVE.

HALUSKA

THE ISSUE WAS DISCUSSED FORMALLY BY THE PROPERTY COMMITTEE OF THE DECORAH CITY COUNCIL AT A MARCH MEETING. HALUSKA SAYS THERE ARE NO FORMAL MEETINGS SCHEDULED AS OF THIS TIME, BUT A SUBCOMMITTEE OF SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS AND CITY OFFICIALS ARE CONTINUING TO DISCUSS THE PROPERTY.
A lot of Iowans are calling the Iowa Department of Revenue asking about the status of their tax return. Victoria Daniels is spokewoman for the agency. Daniels said more than half as many income tax refunds have been issued this year in Iowa compared to last year at this time.

Daniels

The reason refunds are taking longer involves new protections against fraud. Iowa has issued just under $142 million in income tax refunds on 2016 returns as of March 24.

A fast-moving Iowa bill would eliminate the public’s right to access 911 calls involving emergencies in which people are injured, sealing key information about public safety. The House has approved the measure and a Senate committee will discuss it Thursday. The bill declares that 911 calls involving injured victims are medical records and exempt from Iowa’s open records law. That means authorities’ initial response to shootings, stabbings and many other incidents would face less scrutiny. Calls involving juveniles would all be confidential. GOP Rep. Dean Fisher says the legislation comes in response to the release of 911 calls to The Associated Press last year that exposed a string of gun accidents in Tama County that killed two teens and injured a third. Fisher says medical privacy outweighs the public’s right-to-know.

3-31 NEWS

LUTHER COLLEGE OFFICIALS HAVE ANNOUNCED THE COLLEGE PROPERTY AT RIDGE ROAD AND COLLEGE DRIVE WILL NOT BE USED FOR A POTENTIAL DECORAH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SITE. IN A STATEMENT, COLLEGE PRESIDENT PAULA CARLSON SAID THE COLLEGE’S LAND USE COMMITTEE GATHERED INPUT FROM THE LUTHER COMMUNITY AND ULTIMATELY RECOMMENDED AGAINST PROCEEDING WITH THE PROPOSED PROJECT. THE RECOMMENDATION WAS ACCEPTED BY BOTH PRESIDENT CARLSON AND THE BOARD OF REGENTS. DECORAH SCHOOLS SUPERINTENDENT MIKE HALUSKA SAYS HE APPRECIATES LUTHER WILLINGINESS TO CONSIDER THE IDEA AND THE ANNOUNCEMENT DID NOT COME AS A TOTAL SURPRISE.

HALUSKA 1

HALUSKA SAYS THE ISSUE HAS BEEN DISCUSSED EXTENSIVELY BY COMMUNITY MEMBERS AND THE DISTRICT WILL MOVE ON.

HALUSKA 2

HALUSKA SAYS AS OF THIS TIME, THE PROPERTY ON CLAIBORNE DRIVE WHERE THE CITY PARKING LOT AND SOFTBALL DIAMOND NUMBER TWO ARE LOCATED IS IN THE ONLY SITE THE DISTRICT IS CONSIDERING. A COMPLETE INTERVIEW WITH HALUSKA IS AVAILABLE IN THE NEWS SECTION OF KDEC-RADIO-DOT-COM.

A REPORT OF CARELESS DRIVING AND ANOTHER REPORT OF A STOLEN VEHICLE AROUND NOON THURSDAY LED TO THE ARREST OF A WATERLOO WOMAN. THE FAYETTE COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT SAYS 40 YEAR OLD PATTI DEE FARMER ALLEGEDLY STOLE A VEHICLE FROM A LOCATION NEAR WAUCOMA AND DROVE THE VEHICLE INTO A DITCH AND STOLE ANOTHER VEHICLE FROM A FARM NEAR WAUCOMA. AUTHORITIES SAY FARMER WAS CHARGED WITH SECOND OFFENSE OPERATING WHILE INTOXICATED, DRIVING WHILE BARRED, THIRD DEGREE BURGLARY AND TWO COUNTS OF OPERATING A VEHICLE WITHOUT THE OWNER’S CONSENT. FARMER IS IN CUSTODY IN THE FAYETTE COUNTY JAIL WHERE SHE IS AWAITING AN INITIAL APPEARANCE.

THIS IS WEEKEND IS WOMEN’S WEEKEND OUT IN DECORAH. WINNESHIEK COUNTY CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAU DIRECTOR CHARLEEN SELBEE SAYS A WIDE VARIETY OF EVENTS WILL BE HELD (FRIDAY) THROUGH SUNDAY. SELBEE SAYS ALTHOUGH MOST OF THE EVENTS ARE FREE, THEY WANT PEOPLE PARTICIPATING IN THE EVENT TO REGISTER.

SELBEE

PERSONS CAN REGISTER AND A COMPLETE SCHEDULE OF EVENTS IS AVAILABLE AT VISIT-DÉCORAH-DOT-COM

WINNESHIEK COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT COORDINATOR SEAN SNYDER SAYS WHILE WINNESHIEK COUNTY IS DOING O-K, MANY RURAL IOWA COMMUNITIES ARE STRUGGLING TO FIND E-M-S VOLUNTEERS. SNYDER SAYS THERE IS GROWING CONCERN IN MANY JURISDICTIONS.

SNYDER

SNYDER SAYS THEY’RE ATTEMPTING TO LOBBY LAWMAKERS TO MAKE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT SERVICES AN ESSENTIAL SERVICE.

TODD SHEA WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LA CROSSE SAYS TECHNOLOGY IMPROVEMENTS HAVE ALLOWED THEIR ORGANIZATION IMPROVED WAYS TO NOTIFY THE PUBLIC IN SEVERE WEATHER. BUT SHEA SAYS THERE’S STILL NOTHING LIKE FIRST HAND ACCOUNTS.

SHEA

A STORM SPOTTER CLASS WILL BE HELD IN OSSIAN ON APRIL 11TH AT THE FIRE STATION BEGINNING AT SIX-30 THAT EVENING.

THE TURKEY VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT WILL HOLD A PRIDE SHOWCASE TONIGHT. SCHOOL OFFICIALS SAY PARENTS AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS ARE INVITED TO CHECK OUT ALL OF THE THINGS HAPPENING IN THE SCHOOL DISTRICT FROM FIVE-30 UNTIL SEVEN-30 THIS EVENING.

THE DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL NATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY WILL HOST A FUNDRAISING BASKETBALL GAME TONIGHT. MADELYN JERMIER IS WITH THE NATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY.

JERMIER

BEN LESCHENSKY WITH THE NATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY SAYS IT’S A WAY TO THANK LAW ENFORCEMENT FOR WHAT THEY DO FOR THE COMMUNITY AS WELL

LESCHENESKY

JERMIER SAYS THEY’VE RAISED SEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR THE OUTSIDE CLASSROOM SO FAR.
A PLAY TO CELEBRATE THE 150TH ANNIVERSARY OF DECORAH’S PORTER HOUSE WILL BE HELD TONIGHT. CAM FORDE IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE PORTER HOUSE BOARD.

FORDE

THE PERFORMANCE WILL BE HELD FROM FIVE-30 UNTIL SIX-30 AT THE CARRIE LEE ELEMENTARY AUDITORIUM. THE EVENT IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

3-30 NEWS

LEGISLATION PASSED IN THE 1990S CAPS THE AMOUNT COUNTY CAN LEVY FOR FUNDING MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES. REPUBLICAN STATE SENATOR MIKE BREITBACH OF STRAWBERRY POINT SAYS EFFORTS ARE BEING MADE TO CHANGE THAT.

BREITBACH

BREITBACH SAYS THE MEASURE IS BEFORE THE WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE IN THE SENATE, MEANING IT IS EXEMPT FROM FRIDAY’S SECOND FUNNEL DEADLINE.
NORTHEAST IOWA COMMUNITY COLLEGE HAS RECEIVED A GRANT FROM THE IOWA ENERGY CENTER. THE 37-THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED DOLLAR GRANT WILL SUPPORT THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE ENERGIZE NORTHEAST IOWA EDUCATION PROGRAM. THE ENERGIZE CURRICULUM INCLUDES A VARIETY OF TOPICS DESIGNED TO INCREASE TEACHERS’ KNOWLEDGE OF ENERGY CONSERVATION AND RENEWABLE ENERGY, GIVING THEM IN-DEPTH INFORMATION THAT THEY CAN PASS ON TO THEIR STUDENTS. THE PROGRAM IS A PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN N-I-C-C, REGION ONE HIGH SCHOOLS AND INDUSTRY MEMBERS.
DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL MUSIC STUDENTS PERFORMED WELL AT LAST WEEKEND’S STATE SOLO AND ENSEMBLE FESTIVAL. 65 SOLO AND 48 ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCES RECEIVED DIVISION ONE, SUPERIOR RATINGS. ANOTHER 50 SOLO AND 25 ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCES RECEIVED DIVISION TWO, EXCELLENT RATINGS. THE CONTEST WAS HELD LAST SATURDAY AT CRESTWOOD HIGH SCHOOL.
MUMPS HAS BEEN CONFIRMED IN WINNESHIEK COUNTY.

SACQUITNE 1

NANCY SACQUITNE WITH WINNESHIEK COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH DISCUSSES THE SYMPTOMS OF MUMPS

SACQUITNE 2

SACQUITNE SAYS ANYONE WITH THOSE SYMPTOMS SHOULD CONTACT THEIR HEALTH CARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY TO POTENTIALLY AVOID EXPOSING OTHER TO THE VIRUS.
THIS WEEK IS SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IN IOWA. TODD SHEA WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LA CROSSE SAYS BEING PREPARED IS IMPORTANT.

SHEA

SHEA ENCOURAGES PEOPLE TO HAVE A PLAN BECAUSE WHEN SEVERE WEATHER ARRIVES ITS TOO LATE TO PLAN IN THE MOMENT.

3-29 NEWS

 

A STATEWIDE TORNADO DRILL WILL BE HELD ACROSS IOWA (WEDNESDAY) MORNING. TODD SHEA IS WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LA CROSSE.

SHEA

THIS WEEK IS SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IN IOWA.

A new survey suggests that farmland values in Iowa have inched upward in the past six months. A report from the Iowa Realtors Land Institute Chapter No. 2 says the farmland values climbed nearly 1 percent from September to March, hitting $6,545 an acre. The Des Moines Register reports that the increase was the first since September 2013. The report says, however, that farmland values are still 2.8 percent lower for the past 12 months. The institute’s surveys suggest that the average value of Iowa’s farmland has dropped about 25 percent since March 2013. Iowa farmland values peaked in 2013 but have since fallen along with commodity prices. The institute surveys about 135 agricultural real estate brokers, appraisers and other professionals.
A DECORAH COUPLE’S QUEST TO BUILD A HOME STYLED AFTER KINNICK STADIUM IN IOWA CITY CAN PROCEED. THE CEDAR RAPIDS GAZETTE REPORTS A DISTRICT COURT HAS RULED CONSTRUCTION OF THE HOME CAN PROCEED IN AN IOWA CITY NEIGHBORHOOD. LAST YEAR, REED AND SANDY CARLSON WERE ORIGINALLY GRANTED A BUILDING PERMIT FOR THE HOME BY THE IOWA CITY BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT. NEIGHBORS APPEALED THE DECISION SAYING THE BOARD ERRED IN GRANTING THE PERMIT FOR A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE. NEIGHBORS FEAR THE HOUSE WILL BE USED AS A PARTY HOUSE. REED CARLSON TOLD THE GAZETTE THE COUPLE PLANS TO USE THE HOME AS A FAMILY GATHERING SPACE AND THE HOUSE WOULD BE VACANT MOST OF THE YEAR.
THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS HAS APPROVED A SLIGHT CHANGE FOR RURAL RESIDENTS WHO WANT TO DO THEIR OWN DUST CONTROL. COUNTY ENGINEER LEE BJERKE.

BJERKE

BJERKE SAYS PERSONS STILL NEED TO APPLY FOR A PERMIT TO DO SO BY MAY FIRST AND THERE IS A 20 DOLLAR FEE INVOLVED. ANY QUESTIONS CAN BE DIRECTED TO THE COUNTY ENGINEER’S OFFICE

THE IOWA HOUSE PASSED A MEASURE TO ELIMINATE COUNTY COMPENSATION BOARD’S MONDAY. THE MEASURE WOULD REQUIRE BOARDS OF SUPERVISORS TO DETERMINE SALARIES FOR COUNTY ELECTED OFFICIALS RATHER THAN RECEIVING RECOMMENDATIONS FROM COMPENSATION BOARD. THE MEASURE DID NOT RECEIVE THE SUPPORT OF REPUBLICAN STATE REPRESENTATIVE MIKE BERGAN OF DECORAH.

BERGAN

COMPENSATION BOARDS WERE FIRST CREATED IN 1989. BOARDS HAVE THE POWER TO RECOMMEND RAISES WHICH ARE ULTIMATELY DECIDED BY THE SUPERVISORS. UNDER THE CURRENT LEGISLATION, SUPERVISORS CANNOT VOTE FOR A RAISE HIGHER THAN THE COMPENSATION BOARD RECOMMENDS BUT CAN VOTE FOR INCREASES THAT ARE LOWER.

A WEST UNION WOMAN WAS SERIOUSLY INJURED IN A TUESDAY AFTERNOON TWO-VEHICLE ACCIDENT ON HIGHWAY NINE WITHIN THE DECORAH CITY LIMITS. THE DECORAH POLICE DEPARTMENT SAYS 77 YEAR OLD CAROLYN HAVENSTRITE AND A PASSENGER WERE INJURED IN THE ACCIDENT WHICH OCCURRED SHORTLY BEFORE THREE-30 WEST OF OLD STAGE ROAD. AUTHORITIES SAY HAVENSTRITE WAS AIR-LIFTED TO GUNDERSEN HEALTH SYSTEMS IN LA CROSSE. POLICE SAY THE OTHER VEHICLE WAS DRIVEN BY 34 YEAR OLD KENNETH HOUGEN OF WAUKON. NO SPECIFIC DETAILS WERE RELEASED ABOUT THE ACCIDENT, WHICH REMAINS UNDER INVESTIGATION.

A MILLWAUKEE MAN HAS BEEN ARRESTED ON SEVERAL FAYETTE COUNTY WARRANTS. THE FAYETTE COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT SAYS 18 YEAR OLD KENDRICK BERGEMANN WAS TAKEN INTO CUSTODY ON WARRANTS INCLUDING CHARGES OF THEFT, BURGLARY AND POSSESSION OF BURGLARY TOOLS. BERGEMANN IS BEING HELD IN THE FAYETTE COUNTY JAIL ON 53-THOUSAND DOLLARS BOND.

3-28 NEWS

 

Iowa gas prices are now averaging $2.28 a gallon after falling 2.7 cents per gallon in the last week. GasBuddy reports the national average has fallen 0.9 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.28 a gallon. Prices Sunday in Iowa were 20.9 cents a gallon higher than the same day one year ago, and 4.6 cents per gallon lower than one month ago. During the past month, the national average has decreased 0.6 cents per gallon.

Iowa’s metropolitan communities continued to make population gains in 2016, but new data from the U.S. Census Bureau this week shows smaller cities didn’t fare as well. In just the last year, Iowa’s communities with 10,000 to 50,000 people — shrunk in population by a net total of point-four percent. Iowa State University Economist Dave Swenson says the trend of small towns becoming smaller is seen throughout the western Midwest.

Swenson

Swenson says for decades, data has shown high rates of Iowans younger than age-45 moving away from small towns.
More Iowans went off the unemployment rolls in February as the rate dropped for the fifth straight month to three-point-two percent. Iowa Workforce Development spokesman, Cory Kelly, says the state is pushing toward full employment — but that number is not exactly known.

Kelly

Kelly says full employment means most of the people who want a job have one and those who don’t are in transition between jobs. The total number of working Iowans increased to one-million-639-thousand-700 in February. This figure was 27-hundred higher than January and 19-hundred higher than one year ago.

Newly released documents show Iowa officials have agreed to help private Medicaid management companies shoulder huge losses they’ve suffered in covering more than 500,000 poor or disabled Iowa residents. The Des Moines Register reports that the three national companies have complained losing about $450 million in Iowa’s shift to private Medicaid management, which started last April. Documents obtained by the Register through an open-records request show that Department of Human Services leaders signed contract amendments in February, under which the government agreed to shoulder some of the losses.Department of Human Services spokeswoman Amy McCoy said Friday the agreements are expected to cost the state roughly $10 million, which would be paid more than a year from now. She says the federal government would also contribute.

A DECORAH MAN WAS ARRESTED EARLY SATURDAY MORNING IN CALMAR. THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT SAYS 27 YEAR OLD TERRENCE GORDON WAS CHARGED WITH FELONY DOMESTIC ABUSE ASSAULT. AUTHORITIES SAY THE CASE REMAINS UNDER INVESTIGATION AND ADDITIONAL CHARGES ARE PENDING.

 

THE ISSUE OF HEALTH CARE WILL BE THE TOPIC OF DISCUSSION OF A PUBLIC FORUM IN DECORAH TONIGHT. HEALTH CARE AND INSURANCE PROFESSIONALS WILL DISCUSS THE CURRENT STATE OF HEALTH CARE AND WHAT THEY FEEL THE FUTURE WILL HOLD. THE FORUM WILL BEGIN AT SEVEN AT DECORAH CITY HALL. IT IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

3-27 NEWS

A VARIETY OF ISSUES WILL GO BEFORE THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS TODAY. THE BOARD WILL RECEIVED UPDATES ON PROJECTS FOR THE BURR OAK SEWER PROJECT AND THE FRANKVILLE WATER DISTRICT. THE BOARD WILL DISCUSS ROAD AND EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT UPDATES. OTHER ITEMS ON THE AGENDA INCLUDE DISCUSSION ON EROSION NEAR THE BLUFFTON BRIDGE, A REVIEW OF THE FISCAL YEAR 2016 COUNTY AUDIT AND A PROCLAMATION FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT AWARENESS MONTH. THE MEETING WILL BEGIN AT NINE-30 AT THE COURTHOUSE.

THE COMMUNITY OF RIDGEWAY HAS RECEIVED A COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT FROM THE IOWA DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. CITY OFFICIALS SAY THE THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLAR GRANT WILL FUND A P-V-C WATER MAIN, VALVES, HYDRANTS, COPPER WATER SERVICE LINE AND TRANSFER SWITCH AND SITE WORK. THE FUNDING WAS PART OF 5.6 MILLION DOLLARS IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT AWARDED BY STATE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OFFICIALS LAST WEEK.

A DOG PARK IN DECORAH IS BECOMING CLOSER TO REALITY. THE ISSUE WAS DISCUSSED AT LAST WEEK’S DECORAH PARKS AND RECREATION BOARD MEETING. PARKS AND RECREATION DIRECTOR ANDY NIMROD SAYS A GROUP HAS BEEN STUDYING THE IDEA. NIMROD SAYS THE GROUP HAS A SITE IN MIND AND A FINANCING PLAN. HE SAYS THE GROUP HOPES TO CONSTRUCT THE PARK WITH LITTLE IF ANY TAXPAYER MONEY.

16 AREA HIGH SCHOOL SPEECH STUDENTS WILL PERFORM AT TODAY’S INDIVIDUAL EVENTS ALL-STATE SPEECH FESTIVAL IN CEDAR FALLS. FOUR DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS WILL PERFORM, INCLUDING EMMA FREITHEIM, JENNA GALLIGAN, RICHARD WEIS, SAWYER VANDENBRINK. FOUR NORTH FAYETTE VALLEY STUDENTS WILL ALSO ATTEND, INCLUDING BETHANY MERKLE, DENISE THOMPSON, JESSICA KAMAUS AND ZANDER BRITT. THREE STUDENTS FROM MFL-MAR-MAC WILL BE IN CEDAR FALLS TODAY, INCLUDING ANJELA WATERMAN, AYLA BOYLEN AND WALTER STAVROPLUS. TWO CRESTWOOD HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS WILL PERFORM, JUSTIN HOLT AND RIELYNN THOMPSON AND MAKAYLA MANNING FROM KEE HIGH WILL ALSO PERFORM.

THIS WEEK IS SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IN IOWA. TODD SHEA IS WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LA CROSSE.

SHEA

SHEA SAYS A STATEWIDE TORNADO DRILL WILL BE HELD WEDNESDAY MORNING IN THE TEN A.M. HOUR.

3-26 NEWS

IT WILL BE A BUSY DAY TOMORROW FOR THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS. THE BOARD WILL RECEIVE UPDATES ON THE BLUFFTON SEWER DISTRICT AND THE FRANKVILLE DISTRICT. THE BOARD WILL ALSO DISCUSS THE FISCAL YEAR 2016 AUDIT, EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT ISSUES AND EROSION ON A PROPERTY NEAR THE BLUFFTON BRIDGE. THE MEETING WILL BEGIN AT NINE-30 AT THE COURTHOUSE IN DECORAH.

WINNESHIEK MEDICAL CENTER WILL HOST A FREE DIABETES SCREENING THIS WEEK. JEAN IRVIN IS A DIETICIAN WITH WINNESHIEK MEDICAL CENTER.

IRVIN

IRVIN SAYS THE SCREENING WILL BE HELD FROM SEVEN UNTIL NINE-30 TUESDAY MORNING IN CONFERENCE ROOM B OF WINNESHIEK MEDICAL CENTER.

A NORTHEAST IOWA RESTAURANT IS THE HOME OF ONE OF THE TEN BEST BURGERS IN IOWA. THE IOWA CATTLEMEN’S ASSOCIATION RECENTLY SAID THE IRISH SANTI IN GUNDER HAD ONE OF TEN BEST BURGERS IN THE STATE. FROM THE LIST OF TEN, JUDGES WILL DECIDE IOWA’S BEST BURGER. ALL OF THE RESTAURANTS WILL BE VISTED BY A PANEL OF ANONYMOUS JUDGES WHO WILL EVALUATE THE BURGERS BASED ON TASTE, APPEARANCE AND PROPER DONENESS. THE WINNER WILL BE CROWNED MAY FIRST.

THE WINNESHIEK COUNTY DEMOCRATIC PARTY WILL HOLD ITS OFF-YEAR CAUCUS THIS WEEK. THE CAUCUS WILL BEGIN THURSDAY NIGHT AT SIX-30 IN THE CONGREGATIONAL CENTER OF DECORAH’S UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST. AT SEVEN-30, THE CAUCUS WILL CONVENE TO ELECT NEW PRECINCT COMMITTEE PEOPLE, CONFIRM CENTRAL COMMITTEE MEMBERS, OFFICERS FOR THE COMING YEAR AND TO REVIEW THE 2016 PLATFORM FOR DESIRED REVISIONS.

IOWA WORKS WILL BE HOSTING A JOB FAIR IN CLAYTON COUNTY THIS WEEK. IT WILL BE HELD AT THE JOHNSON’S EVENT CENTER IN ELKADER FROM FOUR UNTIL SEVEN P.M. THURSDAY AFTERNOON.

THE DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL NATIONAL SOCIETY WILL HOST A FUNDRAISING BASKETBALL GAME THIS WEEK. MEMBERS OF THE DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL FACULTY AND STAFF WILL TAKE ON MEMBERS OF LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT IN A BASKETBALL GAME FRIDAY AT SIX-30. PROCEEDS FROM THE GAME WILL BE PUT TOWARDS AN OUTDOOR CLASSROOM AT DECORAH HIGH SCHOOL.

3-25 NEWS

NEXT WEEK IS SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IN THE STATE OF IOWA. THE FIRST ROUND OF SEVERE WEATHER IN THE AREA THIS YEAR CAME ON MARCH SIXTH. TODD SHEA WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAYS ITS NOT UN-HEARD OF BUT IT IS UNUSUAL.

SHEA

SHEA SAYS A STATEWIDE TORNADO DRILL WILL BE HELD NEXT WEDNESDAY MORNING AT TEN A.M.

THE DECORAH PARKS AND RECREATION BOARD HAS FORMALIZED A SPENDING POLICY REGARDING PERMANENT ENDOWMENT FUNDS. THE BOARD TOOK THE ACTION AT ITS MEETING THURSDAY NIGHT. PARKS AND RECREATION DIRECTOR ANDY NIMROD SAYS THE BOARD AGREED TO NOT SPEND MORE THAN 75 PERCENT OF THE PROCEEDS FROM THE ENDOWMENT PER YEAR. NIMROD SAYS THE SOON TO BE COMPLETED PEDESTRIAN BRIDGE AT DUNNING SPRINGS WAS THE FIRST EXPENDITURE FROM THE ENDOWMENT FUND.
THE TURKEY VALLEY EDUCATION FOUNDATION GALA WILL BE HELD (SATURDAY) NIGHT AT THE WAUCOMA EVENTS CENTER. DAVE ANDERSON IS WITH THE TURKEY VALLEY EDUCATION FOUNDATION.

ANDERSON 1

ANDERSON SAYS PROCEEDS FROM THE EVENT WILL BENEFIT THE FOUNDATION.

ANDERSON 2

ANDERSON SAYS TICKETS ARE STILL AVAILABLE BY CONTACTING ANDERSON AT 319-290-3945.
THE ANNUAL HELPING SERVICES FOR YOUTH AND FAMILY BOWL-A-THON WILL BE HELD THIS WEEKEND. KATHY SCHWARTZHOFF WITH HELPING SERVICES SAYS THE PROCEEDS FROM THE EVENT WILL BENEFIT THE ORGANIZATION’S MENTORING PROGRAM.

SCHWARTZHOFF

THE BOWL-A-THON WILL BE HELD SUNDAY AT ONEOTA LANES IN DECORAH WITH BOWLING TIMES OF THREE P.M. AND FIVE P.M. PERSONS CAN REGISTER AT HELPING-SERVICES-DOT-ORG-SLASH-HEROBOWL.
A FORUM REGARDING HEALTH CARE WILL BE HELD MONDAY NIGHT IN DECORAH. IT WILL BEGIN AT SEVEN P.M. AT DECORAH CITY HALL AND IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. A PANEL COMPRISED OF HEALTHCARE AND INSURANCE PROFESSIONALS WILL ANSWER QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE CURRENT OF HEALTHCARE IN NORTHEAST IOWA AND WHAT THEY FEEL THE FUTURE MAY HOLD.

3-24 NEWS

THE AREA DEALT WITH ITS FAIR SHARE OF FLOODING LAST YEAR. WHAT’S THE OUTLOOK FOR THIS YEAR? TODD SHEA IS WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LA CROSSE

SHEA

SHEA SAYS THE SNOW MELT IS PRETTY WELL GONE WHICH HELPS LESSEN THE POSSIBILITY OF SPRING FLOODING.

 

 

THE STATE DATA CENTER OF IOWA IS OUT WITH ITS 2016 COUNTY POPULATION ESTIMATES. WINNESHIEK COUNTY’S ESTIMATED POPULATION WAS DOWN TWO-POINT-FOUR PERCENT FROM 2015. THE COUNTY ESTIMATED 2016 POPULATION IS 20-THOUSAND 561. OTHER AREA COUNTIES SAW REDUCTIONS IN THEIR POPULATION ESTIMATES FROM 2016 TO 2015 ACCORDING TO THE DATA. FAYETTE COUNTY SAW A FOUR PERCENT DECREASE, CHICKASAW COUNTY A THREE-POINT-THREE PERCENT DECREASE, ALLAMAKEE COUNTY A THREE-POINT-ONE PERCENT DECREASE, CLAYTON COUNTY’S POPULATION DECREASED THREE PERCENT AND HOWARD COUNTY’S DECREASE IS TWO-POINT-FOUR PERCENT.

Iowa Senate Republicans have amended a voter identification bill to reduce the number of early voting days. Lawmakers voted 26-21 Thursday in support of the bill. It includes a provision to reduce early voting before a general election from 40 days to 29 days. The bill also would require people to show acceptable identification at the polls. The state would send identification to people who need it. Democrats have argued the bill would make it harder for people to vote, and reducing early voting would prevent even more people from participating. GOP Sen. Roby Smith, of Davenport, says 29 days gives people enough time to vote.
The House passed a similar bill without the early voting language. They will have to vote again now that the Senate has approved the measure.

A Democrat who’s a 42-year-old veteran of the Iraq War has formed an “exploratory committee” — his first step toward officially launching a campaign for governor. Todd Prichard of Charles City is currently in his fifth year as a state representative.

Prichard

Prichard is a small town attorney who also had a career in the military. That means his bio is similar to successful statewide candidates like former Governor Tom Vilsack, who was an attorney in Mount Pleasant, and U.S. Senator Joni Ernst, an Iowa National Guard veteran. Prichard is pitching himself as someone who can provide “fresh” leadership for the state.