DEVELOPING STORY — “AK-47 Bandit” who robbed Mason City credit union may be in custody

MASON CITY — The “AK-47 Bandit” who robbed a Mason City credit union two years ago and committed other crimes in Nebraska and the western United States may be in custody. In More »

Governor says budget won’t impact state parks for July 4th

DES MOINES — This is the final week of the current state budget year and Governor Kim Reynolds says she’s keeping an eye on the bottom line, knowing there is going to More »

State Auditor: budget in good shape, more info needed on tax credits, abatement

DES MOINES — State Auditor Mary Mosiman says the governor and legislators are doing some good things with the state budget, but says there are some challenges ahead. Mosiman released her review More »

Program offers money toward a down payment for new homeowners

DES MOINES — A new state program offers help with the downpayment for those looking to buy a home. The #OwnItIowa program was laid out during the governor’s weekly news conference. The More »

Man credited with transforming African agriculture wins World Food Prize

DES MOINES — The Iowa-based World Food Prize will be presented this year to a man who’s credited with expanding food production in Nigeria and transforming African agriculture. World Food Prize President More »

Mason City men indicted on federal meth dealing charges

CLEAR LAKE — Two Mason City men have been indicted on federal drug dealing charges. 33-year-old Matthew Query and 30-year-old Ronald Frank each have been charged with conspiracy to distribute a controlled More »

Five years for Clear Lake man accused of running over and dragging bicyclist

CLEAR LAKE — It’s five years in prison for a Clear Lake man who ran over a bicyclist last year. Clear Lake police accused 36-year-old Nicholas Horst of being high on drugs More »

DEVELOPING STORY — “AK-47 Bandit” who robbed Mason City credit union may be in custody

MASON CITY — The “AK-47 Bandit” who robbed a Mason City credit union two years ago and committed other crimes in Nebraska and the western United States may be in custody.

In 2012 and 2014, a man the FBI called the “AK-47 Bandit” robbed several banks, as well as shot and wounded a police officer in Chino California. 39-year-old Richard Gathercole was arrested last week in Dawson County Nebraska after allegedly firing shots from an AK-47 rifle at a Kansas state trooper.

Governor says budget won’t impact state parks for July 4th

DES MOINES — This is the final week of the current state budget year and Governor Kim Reynolds says she’s keeping an eye on the bottom line, knowing there is going to be a budget shortfall brought on by lower than expected state revenues.

“We’re continuing to monitor it every day. It fluctuates daily as we monitor not only revenues, but expenditures going out,” Reynolds says. “We won’t be making a final decision until September 30th when the accrual period ends. We will have to wait up until that time until we know what strategy we will have to use.”

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources director had indicated the budget shortage might force the department to close some state Parks. Reynolds was asked Monday during here weekly meeting with reporters if those heading out for the Fourth of July would see any closed signs at state parks.

“Nope, nope, they are going to be open and we encourage families across the state to get out and enjoy the wonderful state parks that we have right here in the state of Iowa,” Reynolds says.

State Auditor: budget in good shape, more info needed on tax credits, abatement

DES MOINES — State Auditor Mary Mosiman says the governor and legislators are doing some good things with the state budget, but says there are some challenges ahead. Mosiman released her review of the budget Monday.

“Our budget is balanced, we are doing very well in adhering to sound budgeting principles — which is essential for government entities –the deviations that we have are minimal,”according to Mosiman. “We have practically eliminated using one-time revenue sources for ongoing expenditures. The multi-year accelerated financial commitments have expired. And we are doing a better job of using the best estimates available in the budget.”

Mosiman, who is a Republican, had praise for the handling of the drop in revenue when the state tax collections came in below the forecast revenue.

Program offers money toward a down payment for new homeowners

DES MOINES — A new state program offers help with the downpayment for those looking to buy a home. The #OwnItIowa program was laid out during the governor’s weekly news conference.

The Iowa Finance Authority and the Iowa Association of REALTORS® are sponsors for the program which offers $1,500 in closing cost assistance with conventional loans. Iowa Finance Authority Executive Director Dave Jamison says it also offers $5,000 dollars in assistance for eligible service members and veterans, and the chance for anyone to win $2,500 in cash.

“If you add all that up — they check all the right boxes — it’s possible that someone could get up to $9,000 in home ownership assistance. And often times that is the primary barrier to home ownership,” Jamison says. Jamison says they’ve worked to meet the needs of both low and middle income Iowans, and they might be surprised that they are eligible for assistance.

Man credited with transforming African agriculture wins World Food Prize

DES MOINES — The Iowa-based World Food Prize will be presented this year to a man who’s credited with expanding food production in Nigeria and transforming African agriculture.

World Food Prize President Kenneth Quinn revealed the prize’s 46th laureate Monday at a ceremony in Washington D.C.

Akinwumi Adesina is the current President of the African Development Bank. Earlier in his career, Adesina served as Vice President of AGRA.

Quinn said, during Adesina’s tenure with the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, Adesina led an effort to increase the availability of credit for farmers across the continent.

Diverse Iowa delegation is on diplomatic mission to Kosovo

DES MOINES — Iowa’s Secretary of Agriculture is in Kosovo, leading an Iowa delegation that also includes representatives from business, education and sports. Secretary Bill Northey is being joined by a number of representatives from higher education, including the presidents of Des Moines Area Community College and Iowa Central Community College.

Mason City men indicted on federal meth dealing charges

CLEAR LAKE — Two Mason City men have been indicted on federal drug dealing charges.

33-year-old Matthew Query and 30-year-old Ronald Frank each have been charged with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver. The federal indictment alleges the pair have been conspiring with each other and other individuals since 2012 to distribute methamphetamine.

Five years for Clear Lake man accused of running over and dragging bicyclist

CLEAR LAKE — It’s five years in prison for a Clear Lake man who ran over a bicyclist last year.

Clear Lake police accused 36-year-old Nicholas Horst of being high on drugs when he hit 47-year-old Gary Beach in the 2200 block of Main Avenue last September 27th. Authorities say Beach was dragged more than 150 feet.

Horst pleaded guilty in March to the charge of serious injury by vehicle. Besides the five year sentence issued on Monday, Horst was also ordered to pay restitution. An exact amount will be set at a later date.

Tuesday June 27th Local Sports

TONIGHT:
AM-1490/96.7-FM KRIB — Clear Lake softball vs. Newman — 7:20

 

 

BOSTON (AP) – Chris Sale pitched 6 1/3 overpowering innings with nine strikeouts, Mitch Moreland hit a solo homer for the third straight game and the Boston Red Sox beat the Minnesota Twins 4-1 on Monday in a matchup of two of the AL’s top teams.

Dustin Pedroia had two hits and drove in a run and Moreland added a sacrifice for Boston, which kept pace with the New York Yankees atop the East.

Ernst says Medicaid coverage is part of discussion on Senate health plan

DES MOINES — Iowa Senator Joni Ernst, a Republican from Red Oak, says she is still reviewing the Senate health care bill that was unveiled Thursday. She was asked at an event what she would say to Iowans who are afraid they would lose their Medicaid coverage under the bill.

“I would say we’re still going through this bill, we’ll have some lengthy discussions, but I wouldn’t say we are losing it. We do need to go through the bill — but we want to make sure Iowans are protected,” Ernst says. She says Medicaid will be part of the discussion when they return to work on Monday.

Mason City man accused of embezzlement dies

MASON CITY — A Mason City man charged with embezzling more than $30-thousand from a pet-boarding business has died.

48-year-old Johnathan Kofron-Willaman was arrested last month on ongoing criminal conduct and theft charges. Police say Kofron-Willaman worked at Mason City’s Bark Break Hotel, a pet boarding facility featuring private suites, a whirlpool tub and play areas that opened in 2014. The business closed last June and has reopened under new ownership and a new name.

North-central Iowa natives credit ‘Count the Kicks’ phone app with saving baby’s life

DES MOINES — A phone application created in Iowa is helping save the lives of newborn children around the world.

Emily Eekhoff of Waukee, and originally from Garner, was using the “Count the Kicks” app on May 30th to track her baby’s movements and noticed a decrease in activity. She and her husband, Jeremy, rushed to the hospital that afternoon.

“They made the call to do an emergency C-section and when they got her out, her cord was around her neck three times. So, we saved her life by coming that day and by using the app,” Eekhoff said.

Emily held the couple’s three-week-old girl, Ruby, as she and Jeremy spoke at a news conference recently at Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines.

Court tosses woman’s victory in key northern Iowa sex harassment case

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – A divided Iowa Supreme Court has overturned orders requiring a north Iowa ethanol company to pay $2.5 million to a lab manager who suffered severe workplace sexual harassment from her boss.

The court said that jurors who ordered Homeland Energy Solutions to pay Tina Haskenhoff $1.4 million in damages for back pay and emotional distress were given faulty instructions during the month-long 2014 trial.

Ernst proposes legislation to allow states flexibility with federal poverty programs

DES MOINES — Iowa Senator Joni Ernst is cosponsoring legislation with fellow Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, which she says will help states make better use of federal programs for those trying to get out of poverty.

Ernst, who is from Red Oak, says her travels around the state raised several questions about poverty issues. “How can we help Iowans overcome financial hardships and obstacles? Is the federal government hurting or helping? How can we as a nation do better?,” Ernst says. She says she came to the conclusion that something needs to be done to improve the system.

Governor Reynolds to lead trade mission to Israel

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Gov. Kim Reynolds has announced a trade and investment mission to Israel later this summer.

The governor’s office says in a news release that the trip, being coordinated by the Iowa Economic Development Authority, will take place Sept. 6-13. Iowa companies are invited to participate in the mission. The deadline for companies to apply is July 7.

Reynolds settling in at Terrace Hill

DES MOINES — New Governor Kim Reynolds says she is starting to feel at home in the Terrace Hill Mansion in Des Moines.

“It’s going very well, Kevin and I have been in for a couple of weeks. We’re starting to bring some of our items in from home — makes it feel more like home,” Reynolds says. Reynolds and her husband Kevin moved into the official residence after former Governor Terry Branstad and his wife moved out to prepare for their trip to China, where Branstad is now the U-S Ambassador.

Visitors from Australia, Brazil and several other countries finish ag tour of Iowa

WEBSTER CITY — A delegation of ten agricultural producers and officials from countries as far away as Australia completed their tour of Iowa this week.

They visited a host of farms and agricultural facilities as well as communities, large and small. Murilo Betarillo works for an agriculture company in Brazil and says it was a thrill to see how farmers are respected in Iowa.

DNR gives tips for handling used fireworks

DES MOINES — A new state law allowing Iowans to purchase and launch fireworks comes with a warning from the Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR’s Sue Johnson says fireworks, after they’re used, should be dunked in water before they’re tossed in the trash. If they “misfire,” Johnson suggests giving them some extra attention.

“Mostly for the duds that remain hot after they don’t go off – those are the ones you want to submerge overnight,” Johnson says. After they’re soaked in water, Johnson says it’s best to wrap those dud fireworks in plastic wrap, so they don’t dry out, and then place them in the garbage. Johnson is also offering advice about the storage of newly purchased fireworks.

Iowans need to plan ahead if alcohol is part of their holiday celebration

DES MOINES — Iowans who plan to celebrate the upcoming holiday with alcohol are being told to plan ahead. Patrick Hoye, chief of the Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau, says Iowa roadways are already more congested over the busy holiday period, but adding intoxicated drivers to the mix ramps up the danger.

Most fatal crashes in Iowa over the Fourth of July period, historically, have involved alcohol. “In Iowa, there were five fatalities in 2015, with three of those being alcohol related, and five fatalities in 2016 in which four were alcohol related,” Hoye said.

University of Iowa to set aside $5M for faculty raises

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – University of Iowa leaders have announced a plan to set aside nearly $5 million next year for faculty pay raises.

The announcement comes as university officials figure out how to absorb a second year of cuts in state funding and are preparing for tuition increases.

The Iowa Board of Regents earlier this month approved tuition hikes at all three of Iowa’s public universities.

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