August 7 news

WORTHINGTON – Southwest Crisis Center Director Sara Wahl on Tuesday met with the Nobles County Commissioners, updating them on the latest statistics that include assisting more than 160 victims of domestic assault since Oct. 1, 2012. Wahl said just in the past three months in Nobles County, they have assisted 37 domestic assault victims, nine of whom are children, and four victims of sexual assault. More than 30 people were safe-housed..

The Southwest Crisis Center will mark its 30th anniversary in 2014. Serving the counties of Rock, Nobles, Jackson, Cottonwood and Pipestone, the center works with victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and more recently, elder abuse.

They are now interested in providing a supervised visitation program in the area and hoping to use the former KidsPeace Academy space in which to do it. According to Wahl, the nearest places currently offering such a program are miles away in Slayton, Marshall or Sioux Falls. In Child protection cases, Wahl said, judges are hesitant to issue court ordered supervised visitation, knowing there isn’t a nearby facility in which to do so.

The cost of running the program would be approximately $150,000 per year, and that does not include renting the space at KidsPeace. Wahl said she was hoping the county would provide the space at no charge, but mentioned there is also a federal grant that might be accessible.

Providing a visitation program would require separate staff, as the crisis center has a conflict of interest if they have already assisted one of the parents involved in a case. Wahl’s request was taken under advisement.

The commissioners also spent considerable time discussing a conditional use permit at their Tuesday meeting. A request from Randy Wiertsema to keep a manure stockpile in place until after harvest was greeted with a decided lack of enthusiasm by the commissioners, but was eventually granted.

The stockpile is poorly located in Section 25 of Little Rock Township near a gravel pit pond. It was compromised by spring rains and created a manure spill.

Nobles County Environmental Services Director Wayne Smith said his office is keeping an eye on the situation.

JACKSON - The Jackson County Sheriff’s Department is asking for the public’s help in the investigation of theft of items from an acreage in Christiania Township on 420th Avenue. The theft is believed to have occurred during the early morning hours of July 30. Taken was a 2006 Bobcat skid loader with an 80-inch bucket and a pallet for grappling; a red 2008 Yamaha Grizzly; and three chain saws, a Stihl 201T, Stihl 290 and Dolmar 7900.

It’s believed the individuals that stole the property traveled with the items through a cornfield northeast of the property to a field approach on 550th Avenue.

Anyone with any information regarding this theft is asked to contact the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office at 507-847-4420.

ROUND LAKE – A tree trimmer Wednesday afternoon had a very close call when he hit a power line near Round Lake. Firefighters and paramedics were called in to a report of a man with electrical burns, but at the scene learned he had jumped from the boom truck when things started getting hot. The truck was on fire when crews arrived, but they were able to extinguish the flames before a nearby house got involved. The power line had burned in half and fallen to the ground, blowing a fuse a mile up the line. Firefighters were able to get the boom component out of the way, and the electric company repaired the sire and got power restored.

Round Lake Fire and Rescue was at the scene, along with Lake Park Fire and Federated Rural Electric.
JACKSON - A second interstate interchange into Jackson from the east will not significantly improve traffic operations in or around town.

That’s the conclusion of a long-awaited traffic study completed at the request of Transportation Economic Development program officials, who had been in line to award $1.8 million to the city with which to build a new diamond interchange on I-90 at the County Road 34 overpass.

The findings cast a cloud of doubt over the chances of the Federal Highway Administration ultimately signing off on the project local economic development officials say is very much warranted.

Results of the traffic study were presented to the public Tuesday evening during the regular meeting of the Jackson City Council.

OKOBOJI, Iowa - A ribbon cutting ceremony and open house will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday celebrating completion of a four-year, 12 million dollar expansion and renovation of the Central Water System treatment plant in Okoboji. The plant is located just north of the Inn’s Conference Center in Okoboji. Parking will be available in the center’s parking lot. Central Water System provides drinking water to the cities of Arnolds Park and Okoboji.

Washington, DC — Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley has planned constituent meetings in 15 Iowa communities this month, including several in northwest Iowa.

With these meetings, Grassley will have been to every one of the state’s 99 counties this year for meetings with Iowans. Grassley has held a meeting in every county, every year since 1980, when he was first elected to serve in the U.S. Senate.

On August 27th, Grassley will have meetings in Sac City, Storm Lake, and Spencer before he comes to the O’Brien County Courthouse in Primghar for a town hall meeting from 1:45-2:45 p.m.

On the 28th, he’ll start in Le Mars before the stop at Link Manufacturing in Sioux Center at 9:45. Then it’s on to Rock Rapids for a meeting at the Rock Rapids Public Library at 12:15. After that, it’s on to Sibley/Ocheyedan High School for a 1:45 appearance, before he wraps up the day in Spirit Lake.

In addition to these meetings, Grassley will be in Iowa most of August participating in public affairs programs with Iowa broadcasters, speaking at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, holding business meetings with Iowa community leaders, and spending at least one day at the Iowa State Fair.

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