The Washington County Sheriff says the overall role of local law enforcement has changed since the terrorist attacks of 2001. Jerry Dunbar the shootings at Columbine, Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois have also had an impact. He says officers were once trained to “take cover and wait for loads of back up.” He says now they need to be ready to “respond immediately.”
The Mid Prairie Middle School has been identified as a school in need of assistance according to No Child Left Behind standards. Superintendent Mark Schneider says main areas of concern are in special education, reading, and students with low socio-economic status. He says while theyre not happy being on the list, they are rationally looking for ways to improve results. Schneider says one way they are attempting to fix the situation is by reorganizing language and reading courses.
A local agriculture expert expects crop storage to be tight this fall. Gene Mohling is a regional director with the ISU Extension Service. He says farmers should be lining up places to stash grain as soon as possible if they can’t keep it on farm. Mohling says the soybean crop is shaping up to be pretty average, but corn is on pace to break yield records. He says the biggest problems farmers are facing is disease, and the potential for an early frost.
Around 40% of registered voters in the Washington school district cast ballot’s in this week’s election. County Auditor Bill Fredrick says that’s not the highest turnout for a bond vote. It was 29% in December of last year, roughly 46 % in April of 2006, and a little more than 42% in in April of 2003.
Friends and family of the late Clinton Fankhauser are having a fundraising dinner and dance tomorrow (9/12). Karen Minard says the event will be raising money for the family of the fifteen year old who drowned in the Iowa River in July. She says they will bring in four different bands to play and will have raffles throughout the night. Tickets can be purchased by calling her at 319-461-9051.
The Washington County Farm Service Agency wants to remind all producers that the deadline for the Livestock Indemnity Program is Monday (9/14). It offers assistance to producers who have experienced livestock death due to blizzards, extreme heat or cold, and other inclement weather. Losses must have occurred after January 1, 2008 in order to be eligible. For more information, contact your local FSA office.
Picture day is coming up at the Washington Junior High. All students and staff members will be photographed for school records on September 17. Picture packets were sent home with students earlier this month. If they choose to buy a package they need to have their coin envelope filled out with the money enclosed by next Thursday. For more information call the junior high office.
The Washington Conservation Board is hosting a nature for toddlers program tomorrow. The “Little Dippers: Silly Seeds” program is geared toward kids three and younger. It includes a short story, craft time and a hike to look for seeds. All children must be accompanied by an adult. To register contact the Kirkwood Washington Center at 653-4655.
A Fairfield based dairy farmer has officially tossed his hat into the ring for Iowa’s Agriculture Secretary in 2010. Francis Thicke formed an exploratory committee in March, and announced his candidacy yesterday (9/9). Thicke is seeking the Democratic Party’s nomination, and is currently the only declared candidate making a run at incumbent Republican Bill Northey.
Drivers heading south on US-218 will encounter some roadwork through tomorrow (9/11). The Iowa Department of Transportation says the right lane of the southbound road will be closed south of the Highway 22 interchange. The DOT says drivers may experience slight delays due to maintenance work. Drivers are urged to use caution in roadwork areas.
Even though the Washington School bond measure didn’t pass, it got more support than previous efforts. In 2006, two bond referenda fell short by roughly 20 percent. Then last year another proposal lacked about 12 percent. This time around, it needed nine percent more. It called for borrowing almost $12 million as part the first phase $36-million overhaul of the district’s facilities.
Below average rainfall last week combined with low humidity came as welcome news to many Iowa Farmers, especially those in low lying areas on the eastern side of the state. Greg Tahssen , with the U-S-D-A, says disease continues to be a concern. Tahssen says corn and soybean conditions statewide are still in good to excellent conditions, but progress is well behind. Two percent on corn in southeast Iowa is safe from frost, that compares with the five year average of 17 percent.
The Iowa Department of Public Health released their annual disease report yesterday and Washington County looks pretty healthy. Public Health Director Edie Nebel says most of the reports in the county include isolated cases of food-borne illnesses. Nebel says whenever a case is reported in Washington, an investigation is set up to find out how and where the person got sick.
The Louisa County Extension Office is offering a free smoking cessation class in October. The Extension’s Kaitlyn Wintermeyer says 83 percent of current smokers in Iowa say they wish they could quit. She says this program will help prevent and deal with cravings. The program October 14 through November 25. To register, call 319-523-2381.
Main Street Washington is having a SWEEP, or Support Washington’s Economic Enhancement Projects, event this Saturday. Executive Director Amy Vetter says it’s a celebration to recognize the completion of the sidewalks on East Washington Street. She says there will be a prize given for the most creatively decorated broom. The sweep is being held in conjunction with Washington’s annual Craft Show, which features more than 100 exhibits and vendors from across the Midwest.
The Washington County 4-H program is trying to get more families involved. They’re hosting a session with their volunteers to teach them how to better encourage family involvement in 4-H, as part of the Iowa State University Extension Youth Development training. The statewide goal is to prepare volunteers who work with young people. The Washington session is September 16 at the County Fairgrounds.
Voters in the Washington School District have said no to the first phase of a massive facilities overhaul. 51 % voted for issuing almost $12-million in general obligation bonds during yesterday’s election. The measure required at least 60% to pass. School Board President Eric Turner says their next step is to explore their options. Turner says he felt it was one of the best plans that’s been laid before voters for Washington School facilities.