While this is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year, it’ll also be a big day for identity thieves. Elizabeth Mosely, spokeswoman for the Insurance Information Institute, warns Iowans to keep the amount of personal information they carry with them to a minimum, in case they’re pick-pocketed. Mosely says if you have four or five credit cards, you may be able to get by with just two. Leave the others in a safe place at home. If you’re using an A-T-M card at the register, shield the keypad as you type in your PIN. Also, she says to always take the receipts with you — don’t leave them on the counter and don’t throw them away in a public trash can. Mosely says shopping on the Internet can be convenient — but it can also be hazardous. Look for reputable, secure sites that feature a little padlock icon at the bottom. Mosely says if the worst happens and someone does find a way to break into your account, you may not know about it until you go through your monthly statement — something she highly encourages you to do with every single statement. Mosely suggests shredding all documents that contain personal information instead of just throwing them away — bank statements, charge receipts and credit card applications. The Federal Trade Commission says there were ten-million identity theft victims in 2002. Credit card losses average $1800 dollars but victims are generally only liable for the first $50.
Archives for November 2003
The director of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources says water quality is linked to economic vitality. Department of Natural Resources director Jeff Vonk says a healthy environment and a sound economy are not mutually exclusive, and quality of life issues in economic development will become even more important in the future. Vonk says in the 1800s, a simple log cabin constructed along a stream or lake was a necessity of life because access to water was essential. Vonk says today, a simple log cabin near water is the ultimate dream for many and proves clean water can be a fuel to drive the state’s economic development engine. Vonk cites property values along the state’s premier lake as proof.Vonk says lakefront property on West Lake Okoboji costs about one-thousand dollars an inch. He says you’d have to sell four acres of prime Iowa farmland to buy one foot of lakeshore property on West Okoboji. Vonk says a recent survey found more and more Iowans believe the water quality of the state’s lakes are crucial. Vonk says each year, about 60 percent of Iowans make at least one trip to an Iowa lake. An Iowans makes, on average, about eight trips per year to a lake, and Vonk says they fish, picnic, boat and swim. He says the quality of the water is the most important factor when Iowans decide which lake to visit. There are about 100 publicly-owned lakes in Iowa.
The UNI volleyball team will be in the unusual role of underdog when they open the Missouri Valley Conference tournament on Friday in Springfield, Missouri. Southwest Missouri State was the regular season champion, snapping the Panthers five-year run at the top.Panther coach Bobbi Peterson says it’s a different feeling, but she doesn’t mind as the team has responded well in the past as the underdog. UNI was denied a share of the title with a late season upset loss at Illinois State.UNI is the second seed in the tournament.
Iowa State football coach Dan McCarney expects the new indoor practice facility to be open after the new year. Construction on the nine-point-three-million dollar facility began in October of 2002. He says they got behind on construction for a few weeks, but they’re on schedule to be into it in January for winter workouts.Iowa State closes out the season with a game at Missouri on Saturday.
The Iowa basketball team is in Indianapolis where the Hawkeyes will play 17th ranked Louisville on Saturday in the Wooden Tradition, named for former U-C-L-A coach John Wooden. Iowa is 2-0 after Tuesday night’s victory over Drake.Iowa coach Steve Alford who say the Hawkeyes will get their toughest test to date against Louisville. He says they’re better than they were a year ago and they’re a very athletic team. It is their season opener.
A victory for the Northwestern College football team at the University of Sioux Falls on Saturday would accomplish two things. First, it would send the Red Raiders to the semifinal round of the N-A-I-A playoffs. Second, it would avenge a 30-17 loss to the Cougars back on October 11th, their only loss of the season.Northwestern coach Orv Otten says they’ve been looking forward to a rematch from the time they first played them. Which team has the mental edge in a rematch like this? Otten says that is hard to say, as one team has confidence for winning, while his team has a chance to make up for mistakes. He says his team probably has less pressure as the underdog going in.Otten expects a large crowd to be on hand.
All the democrats running for President support giving gay and lesbian couples the same legal rights those married as man and woman receive. Massachusetts Senator John Kerry praises the court in his state that’s ordered the Massachusetts Legislature to legalize same-sex unions.Kerry says it’s a matter of equal protection under the law. Kerry says the court has drawn a distinction, though, between church-sanctioned marriage and what the state has to provide in rights. He says the term marriage gets in the way of what is really being discussed — like, for example, ensuring homosexuals get the right to visit their loved one in the hospital. Former Ambassador Carol Moseley Braun, the first black woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate, says it’s a civil rights issue. Braun says her aunt married a white man in the 1950s, a marriage that was illegal at the time in many states. Braun says letting people marry people from a different race is no different from letting people marry people from the same sex. Braun says our society is built on families, and letting same-sex couples for a families provides stability within communities. Braun says “the panderers to fear and division” will try to use gay marriage as a “wedge issue” in the coming election. Braun says most Americans believe it’s “no skin off my back” if someone marries someone they love, and that someone happens to be of the same gender. Retired general Wesley Clark says he welcomes the Massachusetts Court decision which has directed that state’s legislature to legalize same-sex unions. Clark says it is a civil rights issue and everyone should be treated equally. Clark says if it’s your child, and you love them, you want them to have the same rights, regardless of their sexual orientation.Clark says people who want same sex relationships should have exactly the same rights as those in “conventional” marriage relationships. He says that’s “essential in marriage today.” Reverend Al Sharpton says at one time, American slaves were not allowed to marry. Sharpton says to say gay and lesbian couples should not be allowed to marry is to say they’re “less than human.” North Carolina Senator John Edwards says it’s about treating same-sex couples with the same dignity and respect as other Americans. Edwards says he has stressed the importance of equality for all Americans and bringing America together to “embrace and lift up everybody.” Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean signed a bill while he was governor which made “civil unions” for gays and lesbians legal in his state.
Many of you might have bottles in your medicine cabinets or first aid kits that can be used if poison is swallowed to induce vomiting — but some experts say those bottles should be tossed out. Iowa Statewide Poison Control Center spokeswoman and registered nurse Tammy Noble says syrup of ipecac is no longer considered the best immediate remedy for poisonings.The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends people throw out the ipecac but the Sioux City-based state poison center hasn’t made a call as the F-D-A is still considering withdrawing ipecac from “over the counter” status so people won’t have access to it at all. Noble says ipecac had long been considered the first form of first aid to render to people who’ve swallowed certain types of poison.Noble says the syrup of ipecac that’s sold to consumers usually takes about 20 minutes before it starts working to induce vomiting, which allows some poison to get into the bloodstream. She says it’s also not always effective in inducing enough vomiting to be useful.Sometimes only between ten and 40-percent of the poison is removed from the stomach by vomiting. She says other more effective remedies are available at the hospital, like activated charcoal which can help absorb poison in the stomach instead of bringing it up. For questions or concerns, the Poison Control Center hotline is: 800-222-1222.
State officials announced earlier this month that the seatbelt usage in the state has climbed to 86-percent. The youngest drivers in the state face the possible loss of their license for a seatbelt or other violation under the graduate drivers license system — but state officials says they aren’t sure how much impact that has had on seatbelt usage. Michael Laski, the director of the Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau says there’s likely some connection, as the system has made young drivers safer overall.He says when the graduate license started in 1999, the prior year there were six-thousand-206 crashes involving 16-year-old drivers, but by 2002 there were only about four-thousand-588 crashes. That’s a drop of 26 percent. Laski says there are other indicators of safer driving among young people. He says during the same period, the traffic violations went from 13-thousand-700 to around 87-hundred. Laski says the graduated drivers license creates consequences for young drivers. He says they can be called in to the D-O-T after a crash or a ticket, depending on the severity. He says when they’re call into the D-O-T they have to bring their parents with them. Laski says a young driver can lose their license in these situation and have to start from scratch. He says they don’t have a way though to directly track how the tougher standards have impacted seatbelt use.
The hospitality industry’s redesigning motels to improve your security. Motel assistant manager Steve Cridlebaugh says one feature designed for safety is the indoor hallway for room access. He says entrance doors are locked in the evening and guests must use their room card to get in and out of the building — and while motel-style rooms are still around where you drive up to an outside door, many people feel more secure having access limited to an interior corridor. Cridlebaugh says innkeepers are also being more careful to safeguard a guest’s identity when they check in. When you check in the clerk won’t say the room number out loud, just point and tell you that’s it, a measure of protection from anyone who might be in the lobby listening. All the newer properties have locked entrances and video monitor cameras, and they’re more secure than they used to be. Cridlebaugh says the new electronic key-cards also help prevent theft, as they expire when you check out, and a lost one cannot be used by a thief to enter a room. Cridlebaugh’s employer, Stoney Creek Inn, is based in Mason City and has opened hotels in Johnston and Waukon, as well as some in Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin.