A group of Iowa Legislators is pressing to make “Daylight Savings Time” permanent, year-round, rather than a spring through fall thing. Senator Jeff Angelo of Creston says there’s all sorts of research which supports the move. Angelo says having more daylight during “active hours” in the afternoon would help conserve energy, and people are more inclined to shop after work if it’s still daylight. Angelo says making the twice-a-year switches between standard and daylight savings time causes trouble. Angelo found research showing an increase in crime rates and traffic accidents after the time change, resulting from the change in our equilibrium. Angelo acknowledges his idea isn’t supported by everybody. The Iowa Senate has passed a resolution urging the U-S Congress to make “Daylight Savings Time” permanent. Angelo sponsored the resolution because of the work of an 8th grade class in Creston. “Daylight Savings Time” begins this weekend, when Saturday turns into Sunday. The concept was first advanced in 1784 by Benjamin Franklin. The U-S observed “Daylight Savings Time” to conserve energy during World War I and II. In 1966, Congress passed the “uniform time zone act”, setting in motion the changing from standard to daylight savings time twice a year.
Archives for March 2001
It’s still a long way from summer, but sturdy thrill seekers plan to jump into the icy waters of Lake Laverne at Iowa State University today. The 4th annual Polar Bear Plunge is a fundraiser for Special Olympics Iowa, where Chuck Reed is spokesman. Reed says hundreds of people are expected to take the plunge into the frigid water today at the center of I-S-U’s campus in Ames. He says the event raised nearly 20-thousand dollars last year for the Special Olympics and he would like to see that goal surpassed this year.Reed says many of the partying plungers dress in oddball costumes, a few of which are far too clearly etched in his brain. Registration begins at 5 p-m with the plungers hitting the water about 6. Special Olympics Iowa is the state’s largest year-round organization devoted to sports training and competition for children and adults with mental retardation.
The northeast Iowa town of Postville is hosting a first-of-it’s kind diversity festival Sunday. Georgie Kelvar is the coordinator of the festival. She says this first festival will focus on Russian culture. It begins with a Russian film. Other items of interest include Russian folk music and food. Kelvar says the festival was made possible through at grant to the Northeast Iowa Community College. The festival begins Sunday at 2 p-m at the Citizens State Bank in Postville.
Representatives from more than 100 school districts across the United States will look for new teachers today at the University of Northern Iowa. Libby Vanderwall, coordinator of the “National Educator Expo” says with a teacher shortage looming in the state, Iowa school districts are particularily interested in the Expo. She says an all-time high 38 districts from Iowa are registered.U-N-I partners with 25 other Iowa colleges and universities in what Vanderwall says is the largest event of its kind.Up to 700 teachers are expected to participate.Vanderwall says teachers won’t walk home with a job, it’s another step in the process of getting their name out to school districts..The event begins at eight this morning at Mauker Union on the Cedar Falls campus.
A number of Japanese traditions will be showcased this weekend at the Des Moines Botanical Center. Jo Wetherell, president of the Japan-American Society of Iowa, says the Festival promotes Japanese-American relations.Wetherell says Japanese tea ceremonies will be reenacted throughout the two-day event. She says the age-old tradition clashes with American-style coffee talk, as it’s a very formalized ritual.The Japanese art of flower arranging called Ikebana will also be demonstrated. Wetherell says there’s symbolic meaning behind the Asian flower arrangement that’s based on having a large dominant branch, heaven, and a lower branch, earth. The final lower branch symbolizes man.Wetherell says the art of paper folding, origami, will be available in a variety of shapes and forms.The Japan Festival will also celebrate the 40th anniversary of Iowa’s “sister state” relationship with Yamanashi Prefecture in Japan. The event is from 10 to 5 P-M on Saturday and 10 to 4 P-M Sunday. A sushi and green tea lunch will also be available.
It’s still a mystery what killed an elderly western Iowa man who’d been missing several days.The body of a Kimballton man was found late Thursday afternoon inside his pickup truck which was in a ditch midway into a field near Elkhorn. 70-year-old Donald Clark had been missing since Saturday. An autopsy will be performed.
A small amount of methamphetamine was found -inside- the Mahaska County jail this week, leading to an up-close search of an inmate.A body cavity search was done on 31-year-old inmate Jesse Jones, of Ottumwa, who was in jail on drug charges. Authorities say more meth was found during the search of Jones, wrapped in a piece of rubber.
Iowans will again be forced to “spring ahead” this weekend by setting our clocks ahead one-hour Saturday night. One sleep expert says it won’t have a serious effect on most of us. Dr. Eric Dyken is director of the University of Iowa Sleep Disorder Center.Dr. Dyken says it takes the average adult 24 hours to adjust to a one-hour disruption in the sleep pattern. He says many other factors can come into play, however, and bring serious results. Dyken says people who are elderly, sleep-deprived new parents, shift workers and people on medication could all face a potentially fatal setback from the time change. As the person could be just sleepy enough to have an accident.Dyken says most people quickly recover from the one-hour change in the body clock, but some have trouble. He says consequences depend on the type of work a person does.
A former employee in the Dubuque County Recorder’s Office is sentenced to ten years in prison for embezzling from the office.52-year-old James Powers pleaded guilty to stealing and was ordered to pay 45-thousand dollars restitution. After working in the office since 1970, he was fired in May of 2000 after an audit found 95-thousand dollars missing.A Cedar Rapids-area woman will avoid jailtime on charges she neglected some of her pets. A rural Palo woman was convicted in Benton County of animal neglect and of failing to dispose of an animal carcass — a horse. Janis Owens was also given a suspended sentence, fined 350-dollars, and ordered to pay court costs and veterinary fees for another horse that was seized from her property.
Democrats who’ve been criticizing a bill that would ease restrictions for building new power plants are now calling for action on the bill. House Democrat Leader Dick Myers of Iowa City says he wants new electric generating stations built in Iowa. He says though he doesn’t want to give away the store to utilities to get it done.Myers is working behind the scenes with the Republican Leader of the House, trying to develop a compromise on the issue.House Republican Leader Christopher Rants of Sioux City said this past week that he’s willing to delay action on the bill until next year so Iowans can see this summer’s power crisis in California and change their minds about the importance of the bill.