April 20, 2015 - 5:03 pm - Posted in News

Rock Valley, Iowa — The members of three northwest Iowa agriculture coops have approved a unification measure.
grain elevator silos
Mark Finck, General Manager of Farmers Elevator Coop tells us about the vote.

Members of the three coops, Farmers Elevator Coop locations based in Rock Valley, Cooperative Elevator Association locations based in Ocheyedan, and United Farmers Coop locations based in George approved the measure by over 70 percent, says Finck. Finck says while they are releasing the fact that the measure passed, they are not releasing the numbers at this time. He says that may be done in the future.

He tells us the name of the new company and about the leadership structure.

Cooperative Farmers Elevator will begin their unified operations on September 1st, 2015.

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April 19, 2015 - 8:20 am - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — Iowa’s Governor and Lieutenant Governor are going to be in northwest Iowa this week.

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad

They’ll start in the southern part of our region, and move north, before heading back south again.

In our area, the executive pair will start in Cherokee. On Tuesday, April 21, 2015 at 3 PM, Governor Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds will attend the Cherokee Connect Iowa and Skilled Iowa Community announcement at the Spring Lake Yacht Club at 606 Spring Lake Drive in Cherokee.

From there, it’s on to Paullina for a 4:30 PM tour of Mill Creek Machining. That’s at 119 North Willow Street in Paullina.

Then on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 9 AM, Governor Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Reynolds will attend the Sibley Rotary Club meeting, which will be at the Osceola County Courthouse, on the third floor. That’s at 300 Seventh Street in Sibley.

At 10:30, they’ll be at the ribbon cutting ceremony at the Dur-A-Lift facility near George, at 2002 Kingbird Avenue. The ribbon cutting is to celebrate the new facility and the latest milestone in the ongoing growth and expansion of Lyon County’s largest manufacturer. Dur-A-Lift and sister companies Sudenga Industries and Ranger All-Season make up Diversified Technologies, Incorporated.

As we’ve told you previously, at 12:30 PM, they will be at the Rock Valley Community Schools library to hold a Teacher Leadership Conversation. The school is at 1712 20th Avenue in Rock Valley.

At 2:30 PM, the governor will sign a Soil and Water Conservation Week proclamation at the Bob Puetz Farm at
16175 Marble Avenue near Le Mars.

April 19, 2015 - 8:17 am - Posted in News

Doon, Iowa — A Maurice teen has been arrested on drug-related charges in Lyon County.
Lyon County Sheriff Car Door 60-8
The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 2 AM on Saturday morning, one of their deputies stopped a vehicle on First Street and Hubbard Avenue in Doon. They report the driver was identified as 18-year-old Kolten Van Voorst of Maurice.

The Sheriff’s Office says that a search of the motor vehicle allegedly resulted in a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia being found. They say Van Voorst was arrested and transported to the Lyon County Jail.

April 16, 2015 - 4:22 pm - Posted in News

Rock Valley, Iowa — The Rock Valley Community School District is one of three districts to which Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds are paying a visit this month to learn more about how the first year of Iowa’s new Teacher Leadership and Compensation System has gone.

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad

The Governor’s office says Iowa’s Teacher Leadership and Compensation System is the centerpiece of Iowa’s landmark 2013 education reform package. It is being phased in over three years, with a price tag of $150 million annually when fully in place in 2016-17. The Governor’s staff says Iowans agreed to make this investment because it’s critical to restore our schools to best in the nation and give students a globally competitive education.

According to Branstad, better utilizing the expertise of many of Iowa’s top teachers in new roles will help schools improve instruction and raise achievement. Those new roles include instructional coaches, mentors and model teachers. With higher expectations for all students, teacher leaders support the more demanding work teachers must do by analyzing data, fine tuning lessons and co-teaching. The goal is for all districts to have their teacher leadership systems in place in 2016-17.

Branstad says that they are confident that this unprecedented collaboration by teacher leaders, teachers and school administrators will transform education across Iowa. He says that broad, bipartisan agreement in the Legislature allowed us to create the most extensive teacher leadership system in the nation.

Reynolds says that one of the biggest selling points for new Iowa’s Teacher Leadership and Compensation System is that it will do more to attract and retain highly effective teachers. She says that it is changing the culture of schools with more opportunities for ongoing professional development right in the classroom.

The executive pair will be at the Rock Valley Community School District Library on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 12:30 PM for a Sioux County Teacher Leadership Presentation. A tour of Rocket Manufacturing will follow.

April 15, 2015 - 10:49 am - Posted in News

Western White

The Western Christian JETS (Junior Engineering) program recently competed in a national engineering test based on the theme of “The Power of Engineering”.

Three Western Christian teams (2 varsity and 1 junior varsity) took on the task of answering engineering questions related to biofuel, nuclear and solar energy, wind turbines and many more topics. In the JV division the JV team finished 15th out of 42 teams nationally. At the varsity level, the Western Maroon team finished 5th in the state of Iowa and 27th nationally. The Western White team finished 1st in theWestern JVWestern Maroon state and 3rd nationally in division 1. Because of Western White’s high ranking, the team moves on to the next round of the national testing which will be written essays that will be evaluated and scored by test judges


April 14, 2015 - 5:35 pm - Posted in News

Maurice, Iowa — If you’ve parked your vehicle in Maurice recently and have noticed items missing from your vehicle, the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office wants to talk to you.
Law Enforcement Lightbar red
They report that during the early hours of Sunday, April 12, they investigated reports of burglary and theft that are said to have occurred from a motor vehicle in Maurice.
Upon further investigation, deputies found that someone had allegedly witnessed a perpetrator illegally enter their vehicle and take property from it. When confronted, the person is reported to have left the area driving westbound from Maurice.

Deputies say the suspect vehicle was stopped a short time later by a Plymouth County Sheriff’s Deputy near Le Mars. As a result of the traffic stop, deputies cited a 17-year-old boy from Sioux City on charges of burglary of a motor vehicle and theft.

The investigation revealed that there may be additional residents of Maurice who also had items stolen from their vehicles. If you are missing property and believe that it was stolen when these crimes took place, you are asked to contact the sheriff’s office.

Police Departments from Hawarden, Sioux Center, Orange City, and Le Mars, and the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies remind you to lock your vehicles and remove valuables from them.

They say the case remains under investigation.

April 14, 2015 - 5:29 pm - Posted in News

Hull, Iowa — The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office is looking for one or more people who they say defaced a Hull park.
Sioux Sheriff Car 84-
They report that on Monday morning, April 13, they investigated a report of vandalism that was said to have occurred at the Kids Kingdom Park in Hull.  

Upon further investigation, deputies believe the perpetrator or perpetrators used a black and a grey marker to write obscene drawings and graffiti on extensive areas of park property.

Deputies say they don’t know when this crime occurred.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the sheriff’s office.

April 14, 2015 - 9:32 am - Posted in News

Des Moines, Iowa — Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has signed a proclamation designating April as Child Abuse Prevention Month.
autumn proclamation
Branstad signed the proclamation in his office at the Iowa State Capitol Monday morning. There to witness the signing was the family of 3-year-old Autumn Elgersma who died in the care of her in-home daycare provider, Rochelle Sapp in October of 2013.

Sapp was convicted of Involuntary Manslaughter and Child Endangerment resulting in death this past October, and was sentenced to a 100-year prison term.

Click here to read the proclamation, which honors Autumn Elgersma’s memory.

April 14, 2015 - 9:29 am - Posted in News

Rock Valley, Iowa — A hog confinement building, some rabbits and some chicks were all destroyed in a fire on Monday, April 13, 2015 near Rock Valley.
RVFD Rock Valley Fire
According to Rock Valley Fire Chief John Wallenburg, about 2:45 AM, the Rock Valley Fire Department was called to the report of structure fire at 2610 300th Street, a mile east and a mile north of Rock Valley, on Galen Kats’ place.

The chief says the fire department arrived to find a fully engulfed building.

Wallenburg reports that along with the building, an undetermined number of rabbits and chicks were destroyed in the fire, but the building was not being used for hogs at the time of the fire.

He says the cause of the fire is undetermined. He said there were heat lamps in use for the chicks, but he said he did not know if they were the cause of the fire.

Chief Wallenburg reports that the building and its contents were totaled in the fire. He says what was left of the building fell into the empty manure pit under the building.

He says they used about 5000 gallons of water to fight the fire, and crews were on scene for about an hour and a half.


ORANGE CITY, IA. – New Tulip Festival promotional banners were recently hung on 40 light poles in Orange City after the Friends of the Festival Foundation received funding from the Iowa Tourism Office.
The new light pole banners were funded in part by a $5,000 grant from the Iowa Tourism Office.
The banners feature four Tulip Festival scenes, depicting the Dutch heritage and events that highlight the festival each year. Ten banners of each of the four designs were created, and hang along Albany Avenue and 8th Street/Highway 10.
“We extend our sincere gratitude to the Iowa Tourism Office for their significant financial support in the creation of our new light pole banners,” says Juliana Pennings, Tulip Festival and Community Tourism Director. “We feel the new banners are a wonderful representation of the rich culture our community holds and celebrates at Tulip Festival.”
In addition to the financial support of the festival’s new light pole banners, the Iowa Tourism Office actively assists in the promotion of travel to Orange City and Tulip Festival throughout the year.
“We are grateful for our partnership with the Iowa Tourism Office and their continued work in promoting travel to our community and around Iowa,” says Pennings. Information about the Iowa Tourism Office and the state’s many destinations and events can be found at www.traveliowa.com.