August 20, 2014 - 4:09 pm - Posted in News

DNR logoGEORGE – A DNR conservation officer reported seeing dead fish and crawdads in an unnamed stream in Lyon County on August 19th.

The DNR ‘s Spencer field office investigated the fish kill Wednesday morning, finding dead crawdads and fish of different sizes and species in the stream. The stream flows into Rat Creek, a tributary of Otter Creek, located between Ashton and George in the eastern part of the county.

The DNR staff took field tests of water samples. Field results ruled out excessive manure and fertilizer as causes of the kill. Pending lab results, aerial spraying is the most probable cause of the kill, following three aerial applicators flying the area Tuesday. This is the second recent Lyon County fish kill likely due to aerial spraying.

Some pesticides can be toxic to fish and other aquatic organisms in very small amounts, counted in parts of chemical per billion parts of water. The University of Michigan compares one ppb with a pinch of salt in 10 tons of potato chips or one second in nearly 32 years.

Report fish kills to the DNR’s 24-hour spill line at 515-281-8694, or to the regional DNR field office during business hours at Quick reporting can help the DNR trace the pollutant source and reduce environmental damage.

August 18, 2014 - 6:28 pm - Posted in News

George, Iowa — A George man was taken to the hospital after an accident on Monday morning.
lyon co ambulance side
The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 9:20 AM, 28-year-old Jordan Furman of George was driving a 2004 Kia Sorento westbound on A34 a half mile east of George. The Sheriff’s Office says he became fatigued and his car entered the south ditch. The vehicle became disabled after it struck a utility pole owned by Alliant Energy.

The Lyon County Ambulance transported Furman to Sanford Rock Rapids Hospital.

The vehicle received about $6,000 in damages and the utility pole received approximately $2,500 in damages.

George Fire and EMS, Lyon County Ambulance personnel and Warntjes Paint and Body Shop assisted the Sheriff’s Office.

Des Moines, Iowa — Unemployment statewide is fairly steady, and Lyon and Sioux Counties continue to have some of the lowest unemployment numbers in the state.unemployment

Iowa Workforce Development Communications Director Kerry Koonce gives us the numbers.

Click or tap the play button above or this link to listen.

In our area, Lyon County continues to be have the lowest unemployment in the state, with a July unemployment rate of 2.2 percent. Even that is down two points from June’s figure of 2.4 percent. Sioux County isn’t too far behind, tied for fifth place with 3.1 percent, down a tenth of a percent from June. Plymouth County is at 3.2 percent. The next area county is Osceola County, tied for 19th place on the list with 3.7 percent unemployment, unchanged from June. O’Brien County is in a 4-way tie for 23rd with 3.8 percent, up from June’s 3.5 percent.

Other counties in our region had higher unemployment in July. Dickinson was at 4.3, Cherokee was at 4.6, Buena Vista was at 5.0 and Clay County was at 5.4 percent.

Iowa’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased slightly to 4.5 percent in July from 4.4 percent in June. The state’s jobless rate stood at 4.8 percent one year ago. The U.S. unemployment rate was little changed at 6.2 percent in July compared to 6.1 percent in June.

The state’s labor force continued to expand in July, causing a slight increase in the monthly unemployment rate,” said Teresa Wahlert, director of Iowa Workforce Development. “Iowa’s labor force has grown steadily this year, and surpassed 1.7 million in July.

The number of unemployed Iowans increased to 76,900 in July from 74,300 in June. The current estimate is 3,700 lower than the year ago level of 80,600.

The total number of working Iowans decreased to 1,623,800 in July from 1,624,700 in June. This figure was 900 lower than June, and 30,300 higher than one year ago.

Iowa nonfarm employment totaled 1,550,200 jobs in July and remained unchanged since June. Job gains in the private sector were exactly offset by declines in government. This month’s stagnation halts three consecutive months of gains in nonfarm employment, and leaves the state up 16,500 jobs versus one year ago (+1.1 percent).

Education and health services added the most jobs this month (+2,800) due to gains in both private education services and health care services. In the case of educational services, job gains were partially due to a shift in seasonality; health care industries continue to steadily advance upward due to increasing demand. Professional and business services was buoyed by growth in professional, scientific, and technical services this month and gained 1,000 jobs. Construction also fared well this month (+1,000), marking the fourth consecutive month for job gains. Smaller increases this month included financial activities (+800), other services (+500), and information (+200). Alternatively, leisure and hospitality experienced an unexpectedly large drop this month (-2,300) with losses being nearly even in accommodations and food services and arts and entertainment. Trade and transportation also shed 2,300 jobs due mostly to losses in transportation and retail. The only other loss this month occurred in manufacturing (-300) which has now pared jobs in six of the last seven months, yet remains up 1,200 jobs since last July.

With this month’s unexpected gain, education and health services has now added the most jobs annually (+4,000). Health care jobs have advanced steadily (+2,900) and are responsible for the majority of the growth in this super sector.

Construction has also shown considerable promise since last year (+3,900) due to renewed demand for commercial and residence projects. Professional and business rebounded this month, and now rests up 2,300 jobs since last July. The majority of these gains are found in administrative and support services.


August 18, 2014 - 1:39 pm - Posted in News

Iowa DNRPAULLINA — Manure from Summit Dairy, located in southwest O’Brien County, caused a fish kill that will probably number in the thousands in a one-mile stretch of an unnamed tributary and five miles or more of Mill Creek.

The discharge apparently occurred Friday, August 15, during rainfall in the area. Saturday afternoon a concerned citizen reported seeing dead fish in Mill Creek. The DNR responded, determining the source of the discharge: a trench dug to a soybean field to redirect rainfall from a construction site at Summit Dairy.

The dairy has redirected the runoff to an old basin and added a berm to prevent further discharges to the stream. In the meantime the manure continued downstream.

Sunday, DNR fisheries counted dead suckers, minnows, darters, shiners, a few catfish, a few small largemouth bass, madtoms (a small tadpole-like catfish) and a few other species. The count will continue downstream today. Damages for fish restitution and enforcement action are likely.

In Southeast Lyon County, a report of dead fish in an unnamed tributary of the Rock River, from a concerned citizen in Lyon County, was investigated by the DNR August 16.

About 200 fish were killed in one area about five miles south and two miles west of Rock Rapids. The cause was likely related to aerial spraying.

Prompt reporting of fish kills allows the DNR to trace the source of pollution and stop it quickly. It’s important to report fish kills and spills to the state’s 24-hour spill line at 515-281-8694 as quickly as possible.

August 14, 2014 - 9:02 am - Posted in News

Angie JagerRock Rapids, Iowa — It’s time for our report from the Rock Rapids Chamber. We talked to Rock Rapids Chamber Director Angie Jager recently.

Click or tap the play button above or this link to listen.

You can get more information by going to or by calling the Chamber at 712-472-3456.

Edna, Iowa — A Little Rock man was taken to a hospital after an accident near the unincorporated town of Edna in Lyon County.lyon co ambulance side

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Department reports that about 8:30 AM on Tuesday, August 12, 2014, 48-year-old Donald Nelson of Little Rock was driving a 1998 Buick Park Avenue southbound on K-60 or Indian Avenue near 170th Street. That’s about two and a half miles east of Rock Rapids and about a mile south. At that time a 2000 Ford F250 driven by 67-year-old Myron Krull of Rock Rapids, was northbound. Krull was attempting to turn left into a driveway when the report says he turned into the path of the Nelson vehicle.

The Lyon County Ambulance transported Nelson to the hospital.

Nelson’s Buick received about $2,000 in damage. Krull’s Ford received about $4,000 in damage.

The Rock Rapids Fire Department, the Lyon County Ambulance crew and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources assisted at the scene.

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Rock Rapids man was arrested on Monday on drug and other charges after a traffic stop.Lyon County Sheriff Car Door 60-8

On Monday August 11, 2014 at approximately 8:15 AM the Lyon County Sheriff’s Department stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation at Harding Avenue and Hark Boulevard, a half mile north of Rock Rapids near the Rock Rapids airport.

The driver of the vehicle was identified as 29-year-old Matthew Mulder of Rock Rapids.

Mulder was determined to be Driving while Suspended and also without registration on the vehicle, which was owned by BCB AG of Lester.

A consent search was given at which time deputies found a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.

Mulder was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance, a serious misdemeanor and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, a simple misdemeanor.

Mulder was transported to the Lyon County Jail where he was booked in.

George, Iowa — A George woman has been arrested after an investigation into a July alleged crime.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that a theft had been reported during the weekend of July 18 through July 20th in George.Lyon County Sheriff Car Door 60-8

The investigation led to the arrest of 32-year-old Caroleen Candido of George. She was charged with Identity Theft, a serious misdemeanor; Theft in the Fourth Degree, a serious misdemeanor; and Credit Card Fraud, an aggravated misdemeanor.

Authorities allege that Candido used a credit card that did not belong to her at multiple locations.

She was transported to the Lyon County Jail where she was booked in.

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Rock Rapids man has been arrested and may face some jail time after a deputy allegedly found him sleeping in his car, drunk.drunk driving OWI DWI iStock

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 6 AM on Wednesday morning, August 6th, 2014, one of their deputies observed a vehicle parked on Highway 9 about a mile east of Lester.

The deputy observed 26-year-old Seth Pourier of Rock Rapids asleep behind the steering wheel. The deputy had prior knowledge that Pourier did not have a valid driver’s license. Upon further investigation it was determined that not only did Pourier not have a valid license, he was also intoxicated.

Pourier was arrested and charged with Operating While Intoxicated 2nd Offense, an aggravated misdemeanor; and Driving While Revoked, a serious misdemeanor.

Rock Rapids, Iowa — Life is not exactly back to normal in Rock Rapids after the flood.  In fact it will never be normal again for some residents.  They are having to accept a “new normal”.  But life is back to normal at least enough to have this year’s Lyon County American Cancer Society Relay for Life in Rock Rapids on Friday, August 8th.  It was postponed after the June flood.Relay for life RFL luminaria bags

Ronda Arends with the Lyon County Relay For Life says there are several events planned.

Click or tap the play button above or this link to listen.

Arends says there are several things going on. They include a team lap, a scavenger hunt lap, decades laps, a bubble lap called “blown away”, a glow stick lap called “You Light Up My Life, dance laps, and a purple attire lap called “Purple Rain.” There will also be music provided by Rock River Entertainment, games for the kids including Hungry Hippo, and Honorary Survivor Nyla Helling will speak at 7 PM.

If you’d like to purchase a luminaria, just call a team member or Arends at 479-2762. There will also be a survivor lap and survivor reception. Register at the registration table if you are a cancer survivor.

Arends says she’s proud of the community.

Click or tap the play button above or this link to listen.

Again, the Lyon County Relay For Life goes from 6:00 PM Friday until early Saturday at the Central Lyon Track in Rock Rapids.