Today's Local News

Washington couple on a clean water mission

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:39 am

Water is essential to life as we know it. Yet, there are those on the planet who don’t have access to a safe supply of it. Since 2005, John and Mary Jo Hays of Washington have made it their goal to change that through the Pure Water For All Foundation. John Hays says he’s seen instances, where children had to drink water used to wash clothing. John Hays and his Wife Mary Jo will share their experiences this Monday (4/27) morning at 10:00 at the Halcyon House. It’s free and open to the public.

April Showers…and thunderstorms

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:39 am

Scattered thunderstorms are expected through out the rest of the weekend. The National Weather Service says a few of those could become severe, bringing hail, and high winds. NWS says the greatest threat for severe weather is between 2 and 8 pm, with the threat diminishing after sunset. Round two will roll into the area tomorrow afternoon and evening. There is the potential for large hail and more damaging winds. The National Weather Service says isolated tornadoes are possible with this type of activity. Two to four inches of rainfall are possible by late Monday. In case of severe weather, stay tuned to KCII for Severe Weather Action Team Coverage.

1 airlifted after Columbus Jct crash

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:39 am

A Columbus Junction man was airlifted to the University of Iowa Hospital after a traffic accident on the Highway 92 bridge over the Iowa River last night. According to a report from the Iowa State Patrol, 50 year old Manuel Martinez was taken by Air Care after his vehicle smashed into a trailer being pulled by a tractor, driven by 27 year old Benjamin Lacina of West Branch. The report indicates Martinez’s vehicle then collided with pickup truck driven by 52 year old Peggy Griffin of Lets. Police say charges are pending.

Financial fair next month

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:38 am

The recession has impacted everything from Wall Street to main street, and many are searching for answers to financial problems. Washington State Bank will be having a financial fair to address some of those problems. WSB loan officer Brandon Long says the economic turmoil felt by larger financial institutions, hasn’t effected smaller banks such has his. He says the financial fair will feature WSB Vice President Sue Basten. She’ll share strategies for a volatile market and her thoughts on the future of the banking industry. The fair is Tuesday May 5. Visit the bank’s website for details.

MP students at tech fair

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:37 am

The Mid Prairie High School Tech Club had a great showing at the ITEC Technology Fair this month in Cedar Rapids. Jordan Adam, Barry Schintler and Cody Michel received a red ribbon for their Pivot animation project. Alex Thurman and Gabe Yoder received a blue ribbon for their Focus Fairy video on safe driving for teens. Josu Rivera earned a blue ribbon for his baseball-playing robot, and Chase Cady earned a blue ribbon and a 1st place purple ribbon for his Guitar Hero playing robot. Cady was also invited to present at the ITEC Regional Conference in the fall.

Iowa’s air

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:37 am

Iowa got a B on the clean air section of the first ever state department of natural resources environmental report card. Dennis Ostwinkle, with DNR’s region 6 in Southeast Iowa, says Muscatine and Scott County have been put on a federal watch list for exceeding allowable air pollution standards. Ostwinkle says this can cause problems for people who are asthmatic. He says burning trash is another air quality concern. Ostwinkle says it’s an illegal practice, but many do it anyway. To find out more about local air quality, visit the DNR website.

Onesies for SIDS

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:36 am

Washington’s Noon Kiwanis recently donated onesies to Washington County Hospital and Clinics’ Obstetrics department. These weren’t your normal infant apparel. The onesies are designed to bring awarness to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. They read “Fragile, This Side Up.” on the front, and have the clubs name and logo on the back. Experts are unaware of a specific cause for SIDS, but believe its safer for babies to sleep on their backs. Other Kiwanis clubs in Iowa have made similar donations.

WCHC Volunteers

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:36 am

More than 70 Washington County Hospital and Clinics volunteers were honored at a luncheon at Cafe Dodici this week, in honor of National Volunteer Week. WCHC Foundation Director Kathleen Brinning says the hospital has more than 100 people who offer up their time. She says volunteers are crucial to the survival of any hospital. She says it doesn’t require a huge time commitment. Brinning says since they are open all the time, they can find a schedule to fit almost anyone. For more information about volunteering call 319-863-3920

Lake Belva Deer

Posted: Saturday, April 25th, 2009 at 9:36 am

Lake Darling will still be dry until next year, which could drive up attendance at other local lakes. Keokuk County Conservation Board Executive Director Dave Long isn’t expecting an influx. He says they are taking reservations for their cabins, but the campsites are on a first come first serve basis. He says they will open the beach in early May.

Washington civic groups recognized

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:26 am

Washington service organizations were honored yesterday for organizing blood drives during a ceremony at the UP Church. Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center Donor Resources Director Amanda Hess says a blood drive in Washington, usually brings in about 100 units. She says that’s an a excellent showing for a community this size. Hess says only five percent of Americans are eligible to give blood, but one in five people entering U.S. hospitals need it. Washington Mayor Sandra Johnson received the humanitarian award on behalf of the city’s civic groups. She says they’ll find a special spot in city hall for it to be displayed.

IDNR Report

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:26 am

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources released its first ever environmental report card this week addressing issues such as water quality, wildlife and air pollution. Dennis Ostwinkle is Regional Superintendent for DNR’s District 6, which covers southeast Iowa. He says water quality is a concern in this area. Ostwinkle says the city of Washington’s waste water plant is one example of a situation they deal with. He says the plant is essentially too small for the community to grow any larger. He says there are sometimes run off issues when the area receives heavy rainfall. City officials have said they hope to start looking at bonds to build a new facility this year.

More spring like weather expected

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:26 am

Fog and heavy rainfall are expected in Washington County and much of Southeast Iowa today. A dense fog advisory remains in effect until 10:00 this morning. This means visibilities will be reduced to less than one quarter of a mile. If driving, slow down, and leave plenty of distance ahead of you. The National Weather Service expects thunderstorms to roll into the area this evening. In the event of severe weather, stay tuned to KCII for Severe Weather Action Team coverage.

Kalona Rotary helping playground

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:25 am

On Saturday, May 2 the Kalona Rotary will be hosting their annual omelet breakfast fundraiser at the Kalona Methodist Church from 6:30 11:00 a.m. Jan Knebel, Kalona Elementary Playground Improvement Committee Chairperson says all the proceeds from the breakfast will go towards the Kalona Elementary playground improvement project. She says this is the second year the Kalona Rotary will be helping with the project.

Special Columbus Jct Farmer’s Market

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:25 am

The City of Columbus Junction is having a special Farmers Market today. Mallory Smith with the Columbus Junction Community Development Center says this market will feature bedding plants, baked goods and some fresh produce. She says In case of rain the market will be held inside. The market will run from 4:30 to 6:30pm at the American Legion parking lot, 22 Second St., in Columbus Junction. The regular Columbus Junction farmer’s market season begins May 15 and runs until October 9th.

Columbus Jct moving forward with levy

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:25 am

Raising Columbus Junction’s levy has become a team effort. Federal, state and local officials have been enlisted to asses the project and its costs. Columbus Junction city council member Harold Prior says they hope to lessen the roughly $600,000 price tag by using local soil. One snag in the process is the impact it might have on local wildlife. The Army Corp of Engineers requires a wetland charting, which could take several weeks. A review of the charting by the Corp of Engineers might not be completed until late this summer.

4-H Pancake Breakfast successful

Posted: Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 8:24 am

Nearly 400 people came to the Washington County 4-H’s pancake breakfast fundraiser over the weekend. Youth Coordinator Katie Peiffer says money raised from the event will help improve the Washington County Fairgrounds. She says that includes new non livestock project displays and a livestock barn with a small show ring included.

Financial Literacy

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:29 am

April is Financial Literacy Month, and you don’t have to be a Wall Street Banker to participate. Anne Black with Iowa AARP says there a simple things you can do to review your finances, and make better decisions. Black says there are a whole host of resources to help consumers spend smarter. She says that includes the AARP, ISU Extensions and local banks. To find out more visit the AARP’s website.

Washington Schools to receive $180k in stimulus money

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:29 am

The Washington Community School District is receiving more than 180-thousand dollars in federal economic stimulus money. That’s according to an estimate released yesterday by the Iowa Department of Education. The money is intended to create and retain jobs, improve student achievement and ensure transparency. IDE Director Judy Jeffery says. The success of the education portion of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will depend on the shared commitment of school officials, parents and students. She says during this time of great opportunity, they must be responsible, in their actions, wise in their decisions and clear in their intentions.

ACS recognizes volunteers

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:28 am

In celebration of the 36th annual National Volunteer Week, the American Cancer Society recognizes and celebrates the efforts of its more than three million volunteers nationwide who are making a difference for people facing cancer every day. Kierstan Peck with the American Cancer Society, says in Louisa County more than 30 volunteers give their time and talent to fight back against the disease. She also says as we recognize this special week, she wants to thank each of the volunteers in Louisa County for dedicating their time and energy to their cancer-fighting mission. She says volunteers impact the community in ways that could not be done without their personal commitment.

Health clinic changes

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:28 am

The Washington County Public Health Immunization Clinic scheduled for today has been changed. Brenda Slabaugh, Office Manager & Immunization Clerk with the Washington County Public Health & Home Care says it is normally held at the Kalona Community Center. She says the clinic will instead be held in the basement community room of the Freedom Security Bank, 402 B Avenue, Kalona, from 10 to 11 a.m. She says if there are any question to call 319-653-7758