Orange City, Iowa — It’s been a wet spring. While we can be thankful we don’t have issues in the magnitude that Nebraska and southwest Iowa are facing, flooding has affected many roads in northwest Iowa.

We got an update on the flooded and flood-damaged gravel roads in Sioux County from County Engineer Doug Julius.

He says the hard-surfaced roads are in better condition.

Julius says some of the bridges remain in unknown condition.

He tells us that for the most part, people can get around on the roads that are open, but he says they may find more damage.

While heavy rain is not in the immediate forecast, we may get some rain in the coming days. High temperatures will remain in the 50s, and the National Weather Service says river flooding continues and will increase over the next weeks.

Statewide Iowa — A farm organization based in North Dakota is offering help to the many farmers and ranchers who were hit by the recent flooding. Farm Rescue plans to activate “Operation Hay Lift” for the second time, the first time was during a drought.

Farm Rescue is a non-profit organization that provides planting, haying, harvesting and livestock feeding assistance free of charge to farm and ranch families who have experienced a major illness, injury, or natural disaster. Communications Director Dan Erdmann says farmers and ranchers have their cattle herds stranded because of the flooding.

He says they could use some drivers too.

Erdmann says Farm Rescue hopes to establish several drop off locations. He says applications are now being accepted from farmers and ranchers in need of the donated hay. Erdmann says for farmers and ranchers, or livestock yards wanting to make donations of hay need to contact Farm Rescue.

Farm Rescue’s first hay lift came in 2017 for those farmers and ranchers in South Dakota and North Dakota suffering from a drought. He says the organization had a successful event, hauling 275 semi trailer loads of hay to more than 154 farmers and ranchers. Erdmann says Farm Rescue hopes to have similar success with this hay lift.

March 22, 2019 - 11:30 am - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — 4th District Iowa Congressman Steve King is under fire again, this time over comments he made at a town hall meeting Thursday in Charter Oak.

The Democrat governor of Louisiana and a Republican congressional leader are both criticizing King for his remarks about hurricane victims in their state. During Thursday’s town hall meeting King compared victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 to Iowans dealing with floodwaters now.

Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise, the second-ranking Republican in the House, represents the New Orleans suburbs. Scalise called King’s remarks “absurd and offensive and…a complete contradiction” to how the people of New Orleans responded to the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, tweeted that King’s comments were “disgusting and disappointing.” King tweeted yesterday that he’s “working to restore free speech to the halls of congress.” During his remarks in Charter Oak Thursday, King said in 2005 he made four visits to New Orleans to tour the devastation.

King toured flood damage in Missouri Valley and Hornick Thursday, promising to work closely with local leaders to help Iowans recover from this disaster. King said as the only Republican in Iowa’s congressional delegation, he won’t hesitate to use his influence with President Trump to help Iowans gain access to federal flood relief.

March 21, 2019 - 3:09 pm - Posted in News

Hawarden, Iowa — The National Weather Service has decreased its forecast crest for the Big Sioux River near Hawarden to 33-point-eight feet which is nearly three-feet below the previous forecast.

Leaders in Hawarden had been calling for more volunteers to help sandbag along the Big Sioux River, but City Administrator Mike De Bruin says they will no longer be filling sand bags. They saw flooding last week, but he says that was a different type of flooding with many low-lying areas receiving water.

He says damage in town was minimal, with some infrastructure and road damage, but not crippling. De Bruin says they’ve received a lot of support and the community really appreciates it.

Officials will continue to monitor the flood forecasts and stay in contact with the National Weather Service, Emergency Management, and other agencies.

Des Moines, Iowa — The Iowa Senate has passed a bill that would prohibit the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation from borrowing money from a state fund to purchase land for water quality projects.

Senator Tim Kapucian, a farmer from Keystone, is among the 31 Republican senators who voted for the bill.

Farmers in the senate said too much Iowa farmland has been taken out of production for conservation projects, making it difficult for beginning farmers to buy land. Democrats like Senator Rob Hogg of Cedar Rapids say the bill will undermine efforts to create wetland areas upstream that will reduce downstream flooding.

The bill passed on a mostly party-line vote. One Republican voted against it and one Democrat voted for it.

March 20, 2019 - 4:34 pm - Posted in News

San Francisco, California (ABC) — A federal jury in San Francisco says Roundup weed killer was a major factor in a man’s cancer. It’s the second time a California jury has returned that verdict in two separate cases.

The verdict was unanimous. The second jury found that Roundup caused non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Attorneys say it could impact hundreds of similar lawsuits against Roundup’s manufacturer Monsanto, now owned by Bayer.

The latest verdict involves the case of 70-year-old Edwin Hardeman from Sonoma, California. The trial now heads to the damages phase.

As a result of recent cases, Los Angeles County is ordering all of its departments to stop using the popular weed killer. There’s been no word on how this will eventually affect the sale of Roundup and Roundup-Ready crops in the Midwest.

Meanwhile, Monsanto/Bayer has appealed the verdict in the first case — the case of DeWayne “Lee” Johnson versus the chemical company. That verdict was rendered in August, 2018.

Click here for the story about the verdict in the first case.

March 20, 2019 - 3:32 pm - Posted in News

Statewide Iowa — (RI) — If you think your homeowner’s insurance covers flooding, think again. As snow melts, rain falls, and rivers rise, the Federal Emergency Management Agency reminds Iowans to learn about flood insurance and buy appropriate coverage.

David Maurstad heads FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program and says only about 30-percent of properties located in high-risk areas are covered, and only four-percent outside those areas.

Damage to buildings and their contents is covered if the high water is caused by rain or rising lakes or rivers. Maurstad says the policies are affordable, averaging less than 500-dollars a year in locations that are not flood-prone.

Be advised, after buying flood insurance, there’s a 30-day waiting period before it goes into effect. More information is available at

Sheldon, Iowa — If you’ve been putting off doing your taxes because you need some help, that help could be as close as Northwest Iowa Community College.

NCC is again working with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or “VITA” site. Students in the college’s Accounting and Administrative Secretarial programs are providing the assistance. NCC business instructor Janet Boone says it’s an official program of the Internal Revenue Service.

She says the $54,000 limit is per entity, so it could also be a married couple filing jointly with a combined income of less that $54,000 per year. She says all you have to do is call.

That number again is 712-324-5061, extension 272. She says the volunteers don’t just put all of your numbers in the right boxes, they answer questions as well.

She says they basically do the simple tax returns, but they will help where they can. She says there are certain documents you will need to provide, and they’ll help you know what you need too.

Click here for more information

Northwest Iowa — With the arrival of spring and warmer weather also comes the arrival of new risks and temptations for young ones in our homes, garages and yards.

Tammy Noble, a registered nurse and spokeswoman for the Iowa Poison Control Center, says this is National Poison Prevention Week and Iowans need to do a little scouting to ensure their homes are safe for the seasons ahead.

During the winter months, Noble says the experts at the hotline get a lot of calls about things like carbon monoxide poisoning, or the accidental consumption of anti-freeze or ice melt pellets.

During 2018, Iowans placed nearly 30-thousand calls to the Sioux City-based Poison Control Center. That’s down slightly from the previous year, as Noble says so many of us are carrying around easy access to the internet in our pockets.

The call is free and experts are available around-the-clock at 800-222-1222, or visit

Northwest Iowa — Dakota Access Pipeline, the pipeline that carries oil from North Dakota through Lyon, Sioux and O’Brien counties as it crosses the state diagonally, has released information related to its 2018 annual property tax payments in Iowa.

DAP has paid $417,766.59 to O’Brien County. The company says in 2018, more than $18 million was paid to 18 counties across the state. Iowa is expected to receive $25 million for property taxes in 2019.

According to a press release, Dakota Access has actively supported O’Brien County since 2017, with a $20,000 donation to the local emergency management department as part of the pipeline’s effort to assist each county emergency management agency across its four-state route. The donations to emergency management departments totaled $1 million across 50 counties in North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois.

The release says Dakota Access Pipeline also gave a total of $10,000 to O’Brien County’s 4H and FFA programs as part of a statewide donation program totaling $180,000 to benefit local youth as well as students across the state through conference sponsorships and curriculum support. This donation was equally divided among the 4-H and FFA programs in eighteen counties the pipeline crosses.

The other area counties that received property tax payments from Dakota Access include $427,572.72 to Lyon County, with Sioux County receiving $1,479,759.42 in property tax from the pipeline, according to Dakota Access.

Dakota Access Pipeline, which has been in service since 2017, transporting more than 520,000 barrels per day of domestically-produced crude oil was a $3.78 billion investment by Energy Transfer that created approximately 3,000 – 4,000 construction jobs in Iowa, and nine full-time employees. It also generated millions in state and local revenues during the construction phase and hundreds of millions in sales and income taxes. The pipeline will continue to have a positive economic impact on local communities as it continues to safely operate and transport America’s energy, according to the Dakota Access Release.