Today's Local News

Video game addiction like any other

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

A recent study by Iowa State University shows eight-and-a-half percent of kids surveyed are addicted to video games. The researcher used the same model for evaluating gambling addictions. Steve Stine, with MECA in Iowa City says what someone is addicted to isn’t as important as why. Stine says addiction is a way people deal with other emotional issues. He says to truly treat the addiction, you have to uproot their underlying problems. Stine says he’s heard of an instance where a young man played video games for 27 hours straight without eating or sleeping. He says that’s similar to what some drug addicts go through.

MP ranks high in placement

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:27 am

Mid Prairie ranks high in advanced placement. High School principal Gerry Beeler told the M-P School Board that the High School ranked 7th in the state in Advance Placement program. Beeler said this is the third straight year that Mid Prairie has ranked in the top 10 in AP rankings. Superintendent Mark Schneider said the next board meeting will be on May 11 at 7 p.m. at the Alternative Learning Center in the Wellman Community Building. Reports will include at risk program and the math program. The board will also act on a 28E agreement concerning sharing the business manager with Keota. Schneider said he hopes to have an assistant business manager in place by July 2 to work with Doug Slaubaugh who plans to retire at end of this year.

1st ever Miss Latina Washington

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:27 am

The first ever Miss Latina Washington will be this weekend. Planning committee member Carlos Rich says it will be similar to a Miss USA event. He hopes Miss Latina Washington will serve as an bridge building opportunity. Rich says Miss Latina contestants are high school students from Washington, and will be judged in a variety of categories. The event is this Saturday (4/25) evening at eight in the Knights of Columbus Hall and Event Center. The public is invited. There is an admission charge.

1 hospitalized after Ainsworth crash

Posted: Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 6:25 am

A 48 year old Winfield man was hospitalized briefly Tuesday after a traffic accident in Ainsworth. According to a report from the Iowa State Patrol, Kenneth Hunt was transported by ambulance to Washington County Hospital and Clinics after his vehicle collided with another car at the four corners interchange. Police say Hunt was treated at the hospital and released. The driver of the other vehicle, 72 year old Kenneth McNeill of New London, was cited for failure to yield.

Washington recorder will issue same sex marriage licenses

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:13 am

The first same sex marriage licenses can be issued next week in Iowa. Some groups opposed to gay marriage are offering to pay county recorders' legal expenses if they refuse to issue the licenses. Washington County Recorder Connie Pence says she's received no such offer, and will issue the the licenses, as required by law. Pence says they are still waiting on new forms that don't include the words bride and groom, but instead party A and party B. She says the appropriate paperwork for same sex marriage licenses are supposed to be at her office by Monday. 

Washington Safety Center becomes Comm Center

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:13 am

The Washington County Safety Center is expanding, and getting a new name…sort of. Right now the emergency communications department is the only agency occupying the old sheriff's building, and there using only a fraction of the space. The board of supervisors yesterday approved allowing them to utilize other parts of the building and changing the name to the communications center. Supervisors say they are between a rock and a hard place because it seems wasteful to not use the space, but would cost too much to renovate. They also say it is too risky to interrupt 911 service with any major renovations.

Washington Recycling

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:12 am

Today is Earth Day. Some will plant a tree, others might try to conserve energy. Washington County Supervisor Jim Rosien says local residents need to keep recycling in mind. He says the materials the county collects aren't worth as much as they used to be, but its better to recycle rather than see trash accumulate in road ditches, or in a landfill. He urges anyone with recycling questions to contact the Washington Recycling Facility at 653-6373.

Washington Farmer’s Market

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:12 am

This spring's cold and wet weather is putting a damper on local gardening. Washington Farmer's Market Master Bob Shepherd says the selection at this year's first farmer's market could be a little slim. Shepherd expects a good showing of early spring produce. He says there's always a good selection of baked goods that aren't dependent on the weather. The first Washington Farmer's Market will be Thursday May 14 in Central Park.

Avoiding scams

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:11 am

Avoiding online scams seems to be getting more difficult. Con artists are becoming more sophisticated, and technology makes it easier for them to be convincing. Bob Brammer, with the Iowa Attorney General's Office, says its best to err on the side of caution. Brammer says its best to never give out personal information such as social security or bank account numbers over the phone, or internet. He says if you feel you've been the victim of a scam, to contact his office.

Wellman city clean up

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:11 am

The City of Wellman will be holding their city wide clean up the second weekend of May. City Clerk Donna Wade says they are getting volunteers to man the collection site. Wade says residents still need to buy a ticket for 5 dollars and then they can take all the trash they want to the collection site. Again the clean up days will be Friday and Saturday May 8th and 9th in Wellman, for more information or to purchase a ticket contact the Wellman City Hall.

Wellman water system on schedule

Posted: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 at 5:11 am

The Wellman Water system is getting an upgrade. Wellman City Administrator Dave Ross says everything is going well and they are on schedule to have the new reverse osmosis system put in place. Ross says the contractor expects to have the new system up and running by this time next year.

Flags at half staff today

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:21 am

Flags at government buildings will be at half staff today to honor a fallen Iowa soldier. 20 year old Cpl. Jason Pautsch of Davenport was among five Americans killed last week during an attack on a police headquarters building in Iraq. Governor Chet Culver has ordered the flags to be flown at half staff. It applies to both U-S and state flags. Businesses and residents who display flags are also encouraged to participate.

Kalona Council welcomes new member

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:21 am

The Kalona City Council lost a member but gained a new one. Aaron Kos resigned from the Kalona City Council because he and his family are moving outside of the city limits. Kalona Mayor Jerry Kauffman says he will be missed and he enjoyed the assets Kos brought to the table. 47 year old David Kempf has been named to replace Kos on the city council. Kempf's appointment to the council was unanimously approved. Kempf is a Mid Prairie graduate and has lived in Kalona most of his life.

Scam Alert

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:21 am

KCII has received a tip about an internet scam targeting Iowans. A company calling itself WA Surveys out of Seattle is circulating Mystery Shopper emails to try to get people to shop at various locations, and write a report on the business' performance. They are playing on the name of the Secret Shopper program which is legitimate. The company tries to get people to establish a Citi Bank account so they can deposit payments. They ask the the victim to conduct these Mystery Shopping trips out of pocket and say they'll reimburse them through the Citi Bank account. The reason WA surveys is targeting Iowans, is because there is no Citi Bank branch in the state. If you feel you have been the victim of a scam, contact your financial institution and your local law enforcement agency.

Work on Water Tower Park to begin

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:20 am

Washington's Water Tower Park is undergoing some changes. The city council recently approved using fill dirt to level off the southeast corner of the property. Parks Superintendent Tim Widmer says its hoped that they will eventually put a soccer field there. There was some resistance to the proposal from city councilman Bob Shepherd. He says a plan for that park has already been developed. Council members have only approved leveling the southeast east corner of the property. What it will become is still unclear. Most seemed to agree that Washington needs more green space.

Volunteer Week

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:18 am

In addition to being National Volunteer Week, this is also Volunteer Week in the City of Washington. Mayor Sandra Johnson made the proclamation at the last city council meeting. She says volunteerism is vital to any community. Johnson says Washington has wonderful volunteers. This Thursday local service organizations will be presented with an award from America's Blood Centers for spearheading blood drives. Johnson says they had a great turnout for the volunteers city clean up as well.

BOS Preview

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:18 am

Three Washington County agencies will present their quarterly reports at this mornings board of supervisors meeting. Reports from the sheriff, auditor and recorder are the first three items on the agenda. Supervisors will also discuss office space at the safety center, as well as operational expense allocation. The meeting begins at 9:30 in the lower level of the Washington County Courthouse.

Kalona Days still seeking food vendors

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:17 am

Kalona Days director, Dave Finley is still seeking more food booth vendors to fill out the June 19 20 event. He says they still have a few prime spots in the food court. It is a great opportunity for individuals, groups, clubs and churches to make a good profit over the two day event. Finley says fees are only $50 which covers both days. He says this is a fraction of what other similar events charge. The fees help defray the costs of Kalona Days which is presented by the Kalona Chamber of Commerce. For information or vendor applications call (319)656-3535 at the Kalona General Store.

1st Spring Preview Show a Success

Posted: Tuesday, April 21st, 2009 at 6:17 am

Washington County 4-H County Council sponsored the 1st annual Washington County Spring Preview Cattle Show on Saturday, April 18th. The show was an IJBBA sanctioned show, held at the Washington County Fairgrounds. 105 youth from across the state exhibited cattle.Kati Peiffer,4-H/Youth Coordinator, says reserve champion breeding heifer went to Elley Neuzil of Ainsworth. $150 in prize money was sponsored by the Riverside Ramblers 4-H Club. She says the event was a huge success with plans underway for next year. She says a large group of volunteers made the show possible.

Mid income tax break could entice business

Posted: Monday, April 20th, 2009 at 4:22 am

A measure that would give middle income Iowans a tax break, but take away the ability to claim federal taxes as a deduction at the state level could draw more business to the state. That news from State Senator Becky Schmitz, who was in Washington Saturday for a legislative briefing. Schmitz, alongside Representative Larry Marek, say the measure would mean a savings for about three-quarters of Iowa's population. Marek says Iowa is one of only a few states left that allow federal deductibility.