News, State Feed

Traffic camera ban, regulation bills racing through Iowa Legislature

DES MOINES — Racing to get their legislation to the governor’s desk, an Iowa Senate subcommittee Thursday joined colleagues in the House to advance bans on traffic cameras.

The three-member Senate Judiciary subcommittee signed off on Senate Study Bill 3025 after hearing from law enforcement and cities that supported the continued use of the speed and red light cameras as tools for traffic law enforcement, as well as from civil liberties advocates who argued the use of the cameras denies Iowans due process rights.


Minors killed half million bees in Sioux City, police say

Two juveniles have been charged with killing more than a half million bees at a honey business last month in Iowa.

The juveniles allegedly destroyed 50 hives at the Wild Hill Honey business in Sioux City, exposing the hundreds of thousands of bees to bitter cold.

“All of the beehives on the honey farm were destroyed and approximately 500,000 bees perished in the frigid temperatures,” Sioux City police said in a release.

The names of the juveniles have not been released, but they are 12 and 13 years old, the Sioux City Journal reported. They’re charged with criminal mischief, agricultural animal facilities offenses and burglary.


Iowa Secretary of state kicks off voter education effort

DES MOINES — Secretary of State Paul Pate is launching a 99-county “Voter Ready” education effort to prepare Iowans for the soft rollout of the state’s voter identification law that goes into effect this year.

Already, 93 percent of Iowans eligible to vote are registered and 93 percent of them have driver’s licenses, which poll workers will begin asking voters to provide when they cast ballots. A U.S. passport, veterans and military ID, or a voter ID card issued by the Secretary of State Office also can be used as proof of identification.


Iowa falls to 0-5 in Big Ten with loss at Maryland

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — The Iowa basketball team let another winnable game slip away Sunday night.

The only consolation for head coach Fran McCaffery was that this time he wasn’t around to see it happen in person. 

McCaffery was ejected late in the first half so he wasn’t on hand to see Maryland go on another of those extended scoring runs in the second half and roll to a 91-73 victory over the Hawkeyes at the XFINITY Center.

The loss dropped the Hawkeyes to 0-5 in the Big Ten, 9-9 overall, going into another road game Thursday at Illinois.


Iowa’s state workforce shrinks nearly 15 percent in 10 years

An across-the-board budget cut, early retirement incentives and the closing of state institutions have been key factors in shrinking the state of Iowa workforce by nearly 15 percent — or 3,663 full-time-equivalent positions — over the past 10 years, a new report says.

The total full-time positions on the state payroll — not including those employed by the Board of Regents — has fallen to 20,721, according to a report from the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency

Despite that decrease, personnel costs have increased more than 11 percent, or $200.5 million, during that time period.


Iowa City struggles finding balance near downtown for renters, homeowners

The median sales price for all homes in the Iowa City area market was $202,950 in November, the Iowa City Area Association of Realtors. That’s the highest in the state, ahead of $189,000 in the Des Moines area. The state median was $153,250, the Iowa Association of Realtors reported.


Safe travel around snowplows - Transportation Matters for Iowa | Iowa DOT

The hustle and bustle of the holidays is nearly over. As Iowans, we know what comes next. The seemingly long, cold, and dreary winter. Although some people, including many of our own Iowa Department of Transportation snowfighters, love to see winter in full swing, now is a good time to brush up on those winter driving skills around snowplows.

Craig Bargfrede, Iowa DOT winter operations administrator, says the main rule to keep both you and our drivers safe is, “Don’t crowd the plow.”


Senior Affordable Apartments for Rent

Apply now for a brand new spacious 2-bedroom apartment at Coral Ridge Apartments opening January 2018! At least 1 applicant per household must be 55 years of age and up. Rent amounts vary from $520-$975 (subject to change, income restrictions apply) and includes all major kitchen appliances, and in unit washer/dryer.  For more information contact Sand Property Management, LLC at 319-333-1602 National Voice Relay System 711 or email Equal Housing Opportunity, Accessible units.

Iowa Select Farms, Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation send pork care packages to armed services members

WEST DES MOINES — Approximately 12,000 Iowa members of the armed services and their families will receive pork care packages from the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation and Iowa Select Farms to celebrate the holiday season, according to information released through Iowa Select Farms.

Every member of all Iowa military units will receive $40 worth of coupons good for various pork products, including pork, ham, ribs, bacon and ground pork, equating to $480,000 in free pork, according to the press release. 

“We’re very thankful for our troops and proud to be able to support them during the holidays,” said Jeff Hansen, president and CEO of Iowa Select Farms and co-founder of the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation. “We know that we could never repay the debt we owe to them for our security, but bringing military families together for a festive meal is our humble way of trying.”


Iowa Democrats predict blue wave coming

Two special elections last week in conservative strongholds — one in western Iowa, another in America’s deep South — have given Iowa Democrats more reason to be excited about 2018.

Although at least one of those election results comes with a caveat.

In a closely watched special election for a U.S. Senate seat in Alabama, Democrat Doug Jones upset Republican Roy Moore, becoming the first Democrat in 25 years to represent Alabama in the Senate.