A large-scale pork producer is suing four Iowa counties seeking to cut the cost of land the company wants to buy. Iowa Select Farms has filed suits against Union, Clarke, Ringgold and Taylor County. Union County Assessor Gene Haner says the lawsuit affects three pieces of property in his county. Haner says each piece of property is assessed at a little over one million dollars.Iowa Select says land values have declined and they want the assessments lowered to just over 236-thousand dollars for each property. Haner says all four counties are sharing legal representation from a Council Bluffs firm. Haner says the lawyers told the counties they’re reasonably confident the outcome of the suit will favor the counties. Haner says it could take up to a year before the suit ever hits the courtroom.
Archives for July 2000
The John Deere Classic wrapped up in the Quad Cities today after a little drama.Kirk Triplett fought his way into a playoff with Michael Clark in the rain-delayed tournament. Both men finished regulation at 19 under par. Clark birdied the fourth playoff hole to get his first career win.
Two-time Olympian Natasha Kaiser Brown has been named the head women’s track and field coach at Drake University. For Brown it is a homecoming of sorts. She graduated from Des Moines Roosevelt high school before running collegiately at Missouri. Brown says the interview for the job made her decide she wanted to come back.Brown hopes her experience as an Olympic silver medallist will help her as a coach.Brown says the fact she is a native and competed at a high level should help her attract top caliber athletes. She says most “big time” athletes want to leave the state for big programs. Brown says she may be able to sway some to stay due to her experiences.Brown replaces Gary Osborn, who died of a heart attack back in May.
You will be able to continue donating money toward breast cancer research at your nearest post office. Sale of the Breast Cancer Research stamps was supposed to have ended last Friday but the program has been extended two years by an act of Congress. Richard Watkins, a postal service spokesman for Iowa, says some 215-million of the stamps have been sold nationwide, putting more than 15-million dollars toward cancer research. He says more than 800-thousand dollars worth of the stamps has been sold in Iowa alone since January of 1999.The stamps cost 40-cents each and can be used for first-class mailings like a 33-cent stamp, with the extra seven cents going to research. Seventy percent of the money raised goes to the National Institutes of Health, the other 30-percent goes to the Department of Defense — both are leaders in breast cancer research.
Some of the Iowans at the Republican National Convention have had a real “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” experience. Remember the 1987 movie in which actors Steve Martin and John Candy traveled cross-country, trying to make it home for Thanksgiving? Well, three Iowans and a South Dakotan had a similar experience as they tried to make it to Philadelphia for the convention. The four men flew into Chicago yesterday, but their flight to Philly was cancelled. They rented a car, and drove instead — arriving mid-day today. Mike Sexton of Rockwell City, a state Senator who’s an Iowa convention delegate, has on-the-road experience. He drove a semi for 10 years. Sexton says they only stopped to get gas and go to the bathroom.George Moriarty of Spencer was a bit put off by the airline’s decision to cancel their Sunday evening Chicago to Philadelphia flight.Tim Kangas of Iowa Falls says if they had waited in Chicago for a flight to Philadelphia, they’d still be waiting. He says the earliest flight they could have gotten on would’ve left at nine tonight, so they beat that by nine hours.Nathan Schock of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, has seen the movie, several times, but he says he’ll never watch it again. In other convention-related news, Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, a democrat, was in Philadelphia this morning to attack the record of G-O-P nominee and Texas Governor George W. Bush. Harkin says almost one-and-a-half million children in Texas are not covered by health insurance, the worst record in the country, according to Harkin.Harkin left Philadelphia to take his message to Ohio, where Bush is campaigning today.
The Skylift at Adventureland will remain closed at least two more days as officials scour the ride for any problems. The ride which carries people in ski lift-style chairs as high as 60 feet above the Altoona amusement park broke down Saturday night, stranding at least 50 people.Adventureland spokesman Bill Fisher says all of the riders were safely removed from the ride using fire department ladder trucks and power company cranes, though it took almost four hours, until midnight, to get to everyone.Fisher says the mishap was caused by a power surge to the ride. He says they’re taking the opportunity to thoroughly check out the ride before staring it up again. He expects the ride will be running again on Wednesday.
Boone County authorities are still trying to determine what prompted a man’s attack with a hatchet at Ledges State Park on Friday. 36-year old Larry Scott of Corning is charged with attempted murder for allegedly attacking Mary Eischeid of Ames as she sat reading a book along the Des Moines River. Boone County Sheriff Ron Fehr says it’s a tough case to sort out, as Eischeid didn’t know Scott prior to the attack.Eischeid managed to wrestle the hatchet from Scott and drove herself to the hospital. She suffered a skull fracture, but has since been released from the hospital. Sheriff Fehr says Scott isn’t talking. Fehr says right now they’re working on putting together the evidence against Scott.Scott, who works in a factory, was arrested Friday as he returned home from work.
The state high school baseball tournament wrapped up in Marshalltown and Carroll on Saturday. Dyersville Beckman won a third state championship by claiming the 2-A title with a 4-0 win over West Branch. Sophomore Matt Ungs tossed a three-hitter to earn the victory. Beckman coach Tom Jenk says good defense was the key. Granville Spalding downed top-ranke Lansing Kee in the 1-A championship 7-2.In 4-A, Blake Schultz slammed a two run homer and drove in the winning run with a one out single in the bottom of the eighth as ninth ranked Urbandale rallied to edge seventh ranked Marshalltown 5-4.Urbandale fell behind 3-0 before rallying to tie the game at four in the bottom of the sixth. In the 3-A title game, Fort Madison downed Denison-Schleswig 3-2.
An Iowan had her pass into the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia stolen. Janet Pease of Cedar Falls was attending a Sunday night reception for Iowa Republicans when she noticed her guest credentials were gone.Pease says it was a valuable lesson and she’ll now keep her credentials safely tucked in her dress or shirt.Roger Pease, Janet’s husband, says his wife was devastated to discover the theft.Delegates and others who have special credentials to attend sessions have been told to guard their passes, as police fear protestors will try to steal passes so they can get in the convention hall and disrupt the proceedings.
A trip to the farmer’s market is a weekly must for a growing number of Iowans who love fresh produce. There are now about 130 farmer’s markets statewide in 75 counties, the most ever, according to the state Department of Agriculture. A spokesman says farmer’s markets are succeeding.Mike Bevins is a state horticulturist who is helping promote this as “National Farmer’s Market Week.” Besides enjoying the taste of just-picked fruits and veggies, Bevins says many people go to farmer’s markets for another reason. He says it allows a connection back to the farm and to the land.Bevins says crop diversification is one of the fastest-growing segments of Iowa agriculture and farmer’s markets are the ideal outlet to market and sell directly to the consumer.The “Farm Fresh 2000 Directory” details all farmer’s markets in Iowa, along with all strawberry producers, honey producers, fruit and vegetable growers — as well as evergreen tree growers and organics. The directory lists some 633 different growers across Iowa. Order a free guidebook at 800-383-7658. The information is also on the Internet at: “www.state.ia.us/agriculture”.