Archive for March, 2009

News 3/8/09

Posted: Sunday, March 8th, 2009 at 8:18 am

Knoxville School Board Meeting to Discuss Budget Review Plan
The Knoxville School District Budget Review Committee will report to the School Board at their bi-monthly meeting Monday evening at 6:30 p.m. in the administration building. Superintendent Dr. Randy Flack says the committee will review the original recommendation, which includes reconfiguring kindergarten through 8th grade. The review will also include a list of submitted suggestions to the original proposal, including: retaining the activities director position, retaining the energy manager position with an adjusted stipend, and consider retaining the reading specialist or reading associates, among others.

Legislative Coffee Discusses State and City Issues
Residents discussed state and city issues at a Legislative Coffee Saturday at the Pella Pizza Ranch. State Representative Jim Van Engelenhoven and Pella Mayor Darrell Dobernecker participated in the forum sponsored by the Pella League of Women Voters. The state budget and labor issues became major topics of conversation. Van Engelenhoven told the crowd of about 25 that additional state budget cuts are likely following the next quarterly forecast from the Revenue Estimating Conference. He also fielded questions about prevailing wage, fair share and the choice-of-doctor issue. On the city side, Dobernecker touched on issues ranging from Bos Landen Golf Course to a makeover of Caldwell Park.

Home Shopping Extravaganza Returns for One Day Only
Marion County residents will have a chance to make it a lucky day Wednesday as the KNIA/KRLS Home Shopping Extravaganza returns for one day with great savings. KNIA/KRLS General Manager Jim Butler says residents can call in from 1 to 5 p.m. and then starting back up at 6 p.m. as new food gift certificates have been added, with all food certificates being sold at 50% off, and all other merchandise will be sold at 60% off the retail price. Butler says residents can get an updated list of merchandise at kniakrls.com by clicking on the Home Shopping banner.

Bald Eagle Day Draws Visitors to Lake Red Rock
Bald Eagle Day drew between 800-1000 people to Central College Saturday. The celebration of the Bald Eagle featured live eagle and raptor programs, eagle viewing below the Lake Red Rock Dam, an environmental fair and more. Park Ranger Tracy Spry the turnout was comparable or even higher than previous years. Spry says the event helps remind us that we almost lost our national symbol due to poor decisions regarding pesticide usage and habitat destruction. This was the 21st annual Bald Eagle Day.

Marion County Springs Ahead
Daylight Saving time began earlier this morning, springing everyone an hour forward. Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts says this is a good time for residents to change their smoke detector batteries. He adds changing batteries on carbon monoxide detectors is also encouraged during the change. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says the change now means darker mornings and more daylight in the evening, and urges drivers to watch out for pedestrians or cyclists on the road.

Nardini Reviews Pella Budget
The city of Pella budget for next fiscal year contains funding for a number of major projects. City Administrator Mike Nardini says theyve allocated more than $4 million for a new Class C airport, a project awaiting approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. If approved, 95 percent of the cost of the new airport would be covered by federal funds. Nardini says the budget also includes $1.7 million for a major street reconstruction project on North Main. Nardini says federal funds will cover about $850,000 of the cost of the reconstruction.

Grass Fires in Marion County
For the second time in one day, the Knoxville Township Fire Department responded to grass fires on 108th Place Wednesday. First, a grassfire occurred over several acres on the 1700 block of 108th Place, then later in the day another blaze occurred at 108th Place and Perry Street, where smoke and orange embers on several fields greeted the crews. No injuries were reported in both instances. Columbia Fire Department and Melcher-Dallas Fire Departments also responded to the second fire.

Ag in the Classroom Visits Marion County
About 400 fourth-graders from Marion County had the opportunity to learn about agriculture at a special event this Thursday. Ag in the Classroom transformed part of the Vermeer Global Pavilion into a showcase for livestock, farm equipment and more. The event was organized by the Marion County Farm Bureau. Students went to different stations that focused on topics like farm safety.

March 7, 2009 Marion County News

Posted: Saturday, March 7th, 2009 at 7:36 am


Today is Bald Eagle Day
The bald eagle has returned from near extinction to become an important part of the local landscape. The 21st annual Bald Eagle Day is being held at Central College and Lake Red Rock. Park Ranger Tracy Spry with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says the public can view eagles at North Tailwater Recreation Area, attend live eagle and raptor programs at Central College and peruse an environmental fair. Bald Eagle Day is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Central College and Lake Red Rock.

Knoxville High School performs Fiddler on the Roof
Knoxville High School production of Fiddler on the Roof is Saturday in the Knoxville Middle School Auditorium. Knoxville High School Music Director Jackie Duffy says the production centers on a Jewish father in a small Russian village in 1905, and his humorous attempts to maintain his family traditions with his strong willed daughters.

Valley Bank purchases Sunset Ridge lots
Valley Bank now owns all of the lots in the Sunset Ridge development west of Knoxville, after a Sheriffs sale earlier this week. Denny Hanson from Valley Bank tells KNIA/KRLS News that the acquisition of the remaining lots was the only land the bank didn't yet have from the development. He says although there's no timeline, the next step would be to see development take place on the land.

Pella PD receives federal grant funds
The Pella Police Department will receive additional federal funds through a U.S. Department of Justice program. Senator Tom Harkins Office has announced that $18.7 million has been released to Iowa through the Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant program. Sources say of that amount, the city of Pella will receive $20,390.

Call before burning
Warm weather means more residents conducting open-burns in Marion County, and residents need to call the Sheriff's Office before burning leaves or other wood products. Marion County Sheriff Ron Goemaat says residents should call 828-2220 to let dispatch know that a burn is taking place, and not an emergency fire. Goemaat says residents burning must have a constant fire suppressant or water source on hand, and remain present during the entire duration of the burn.

Learn to stretch the Family Dollar
Hundreds of people attended the first day of the Stretching the Family Dollar event at Dyer-Hudson Hall on Friday. County organizations, schools, churches, social service providers and others were offering various tips on how residents can make the most of their money. The KNIA/KRLS Big Red Radio was also at the event playing music, and will be back today from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

City to test warning sirens
Outdoor warning sirens are expected to fire today at noon in Pella. The police department tests the system on the first Saturday of the month at noon. Communications Supervisor Marcia Slycord says this is the first season the department has tested the system during the winter months, and she says that has proven beneficial.

Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday
Daylight Saving time begins Sunday at 2 a.m., and residents will be springing an hour forward. Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts says residents should change their smoke detector batteries when they reset their clocks. He adds changing batteries on carbon monoxide detectors is also encouraged during the change. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says the change will mean darker mornings and more daylight in the evening, and urges drivers to watch out for pedestrians or cyclists on the road.

Area schools represented on All-Iowa Dance team
Three area schools are represented on the All-Iowa Honor Dance Team. Students from Pella, Pleasantville and PCM will perform at the Girls State Basketball Tournament today. According to Pella Dance and Drill Coach Melissa Wimmer, auditions for All-Iowa were held in September in Ames and that over 500 girls tried out for the 224 member team.

Pella Christian dance squad performs spring show
Pella Christian has their annual Dance and Drill Team Spring Show tonight. Varsity Coach Heidi Suhr says the squad will perform state routines which captured awards this school year. The event is a showcase of Pella Christian talent as Suhr says 64 kindergarten through eighth-grade students also will participate in the show, which begins at 7:00 p.m. at the Pella Christian High School. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students.

Breaking News: Grass Fire North of Pleasantville

Posted: Friday, March 6th, 2009 at 2:38 pm


The Pleasantville Fire Department extinguished a grass fire within 15 minutes Friday at 620 40th avenue north of Pleasantville. The blaze extended over several acres, with no injuries reported. The Pleasantville Police Department also responded to the scene.

Police investigating assault report

Posted: Friday, March 6th, 2009 at 8:06 am

The Pella Police Department is investigating a report of an assault last night in Pella. According to Lieutenant John Van Haaften, an unknown male reportedly attempted to assault a woman at the Pella Comfort Inn. He says the woman was able to escape unharmed. The suspect was described as a 5’7″ dark-skinned male between the ages of 20-30. He was reportedly dressed in all black and wearing a ski mask, according to authorities. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Pella Police Department at 628-4921.

Car Accident in Knoxville

Posted: Thursday, March 5th, 2009 at 5:58 pm

A two-vehicle car accident at the intersection of Lincoln and Pleasant Streets in Knoxville Thursday sent at least three people to the hospital, with non-life threatening injuries.  Knoxville Fire & Rescue, Knoxville Police Department, and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene, and had traffic cleared within 25 minutes. 

Breaking News: Grass Fire in Melcher Dallas

Posted: Thursday, March 5th, 2009 at 3:52 pm

Melcher Dallas and Columbia Fire Departments responded to a grassfire on Second Street.  No injuries were reported and the fire was extinguished in approximately ½ hour.

News 3/9/09

Posted: Thursday, March 5th, 2009 at 6:57 am

Grass fire burns several acres 
For the second time in one day, the Knoxville Township Fire Department responded to grass fires on 108th Place Wednesday. First, a grassfire occurred over several acres on the 1700 block of 108th Place, then later in the day another blaze occurred at 108th Place and Perry Street, where smoke and orange embers on several fields greeted the crews. No injuries were reported in both instances. Columbia Fire Department and Melcher-Dallas Fire Departments also responded to the second fire, with crews at the scene for approximately one hour bringing the blaze under control. 

Firefighters respond to grass fires 
Firefighters responded to a small grassfire south of Pella Wednesday afternoon. Firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the blaze, which occurred approximately one mile south of Pella on Highway T-17. Crews were dispatched to another grass fire about two hours later near Holland Drive and Highway G-28. 

Budget contains funding for significant projects 
The city of Pella budget for next fiscal year contains funding for a number of major projects. City Administrator Mike Nardini says theyve allocated more than $4 million for a new Class C airport, a project awaiting approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. If approved, 95 percent of the cost of the new airport would be covered by federal funds. The budget also includes $1.7 million for reconstruction of North Main Street, among other projects. 

Cause of illness still unknown 
Residents from the Pleasantville school district who had an unknown illness earlier this week are recovering, although the cause remains unknown. On Monday 60 Pleasantville students and 17 teachers and staff were absent, reporting symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea. Marion County Public Health Director Kim Dorn urges residents to continue washing their hands, not to make food for others if feeling ill, and not share the same dishes or silverware. 

Republicans introduce job creation package 
State senator and Republican minority leader Paul McKinley shared the first specifics on a job creation package from Republican senators Wednesday. McKinley tells KNIA/KRLS News the plan proposes tax credits for job creation, creating a small business ombudsmen to investigate complaints made by job creators against the state government, and create a task force to inform Iowans of options if they’re thinking of starting a business, among other issues. 

Pella continues state tournament play 
The Pella Girls basketball team continues state tournament play tonight versus a familiar foe. Pella will play Sioux City Heelan in the Class 3A state semifinals, one year after meeting in the state championship game. Tip-off is at 7:30 and coverage begins at 7:15 on 92.1 KRLS. 

Food service director testifies in D.C. 
The food services director for the Knoxville School district was in Washington D.C. Wednesday, touting the positives of the schools nutrition program with the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee. Knoxville Schools Superintendent Randy Flack says Connie Boldt was sharing how the district has taken steps to eliminate obesity, educate students on healthy eating and improve their overall health goals. He says Boldt is also expressing support for more federal nutrition dollars.

Pella Corp receives Energy Star Award 
Pella Corporation receives an award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. The company received a 2009 Energy Star Sustained Excellence Award. According to Pella Corporation, this is the third consecutive year they’ve received an award from the federal government for energy efficiency. Sources say Pella will be honored at an awards presentation March 31 in Washington D.C.

Budget review committee meets this morning 
The Knoxville School District Budget Review Committee is meeting at 7 a.m. today in the Board of Education meeting room. Identifying budget priorities, reviewing employee suggestions, and deciding what to keep or change are set. Last month the Knoxville School Board set a special meeting to consider the budget for March 25th.

Students to learn about agriculture 
About 400 Marion County students will spend today learning about agriculture. Ag in the Classroom is being held at the Vermeer Global Pavilion. The event is organized by the Marion County Farm Bureau and Vice-President Steve Kuiper says the event features live animals, food displays, and grain production equipment.

News 3/9/09

Posted: Thursday, March 5th, 2009 at 6:57 am

Grass fire burns several acres 
For the second time in one day, the Knoxville Township Fire Department responded to grass fires on 108th Place Wednesday. First, a grassfire occurred over several acres on the 1700 block of 108th Place, then later in the day another blaze occurred at 108th Place and Perry Street, where smoke and orange embers on several fields greeted the crews. No injuries were reported in both instances. Columbia Fire Department and Melcher-Dallas Fire Departments also responded to the second fire, with crews at the scene for approximately one hour bringing the blaze under control. 

Firefighters respond to grass fires 
Firefighters responded to a small grassfire south of Pella Wednesday afternoon. Firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the blaze, which occurred approximately one mile south of Pella on Highway T-17. Crews were dispatched to another grass fire about two hours later near Holland Drive and Highway G-28. 

Budget contains funding for significant projects 
The city of Pella budget for next fiscal year contains funding for a number of major projects. City Administrator Mike Nardini says theyve allocated more than $4 million for a new Class C airport, a project awaiting approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. If approved, 95 percent of the cost of the new airport would be covered by federal funds. The budget also includes $1.7 million for reconstruction of North Main Street, among other projects. 

Cause of illness still unknown 
Residents from the Pleasantville school district who had an unknown illness earlier this week are recovering, although the cause remains unknown. On Monday 60 Pleasantville students and 17 teachers and staff were absent, reporting symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea. Marion County Public Health Director Kim Dorn urges residents to continue washing their hands, not to make food for others if feeling ill, and not share the same dishes or silverware. 

Republicans introduce job creation package 
State senator and Republican minority leader Paul McKinley shared the first specifics on a job creation package from Republican senators Wednesday. McKinley tells KNIA/KRLS News the plan proposes tax credits for job creation, creating a small business ombudsmen to investigate complaints made by job creators against the state government, and create a task force to inform Iowans of options if they’re thinking of starting a business, among other issues. 

Pella continues state tournament play 
The Pella Girls basketball team continues state tournament play tonight versus a familiar foe. Pella will play Sioux City Heelan in the Class 3A state semifinals, one year after meeting in the state championship game. Tip-off is at 7:30 and coverage begins at 7:15 on 92.1 KRLS. 

Food service director testifies in D.C. 
The food services director for the Knoxville School district was in Washington D.C. Wednesday, touting the positives of the schools nutrition program with the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee. Knoxville Schools Superintendent Randy Flack says Connie Boldt was sharing how the district has taken steps to eliminate obesity, educate student
s on healthy eating and improve their overall health goals. He says Boldt is also expressing support for more federal nutrition dollars.

Pella Corp receives Energy Star Award 
Pella Corporation receives an award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. The company received a 2009 Energy Star Sustained Excellence Award. According to Pella Corporation, this is the third consecutive year they’ve received an award from the federal government for energy efficiency. Sources say Pella will be honored at an awards presentation March 31 in Washington D.C.

Budget review committee meets this morning 
The Knoxville School District Budget Review Committee is meeting at 7 a.m. today in the Board of Education meeting room. Identifying budget priorities, reviewing employee suggestions, and deciding what to keep or change are set. Last month the Knoxville School Board set a special meeting to consider the budget for March 25th.

Students to learn about agriculture 
About 400 Marion County students will spend today learning about agriculture. Ag in the Classroom is being held at the Vermeer Global Pavilion. The event is organized by the Marion County Farm Bureau and Vice-President Steve Kuiper says the event features live animals, food displays, and grain production equipment.

Fields on Fire Outside Knoxville, Cause Unknown

Posted: Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 6:43 pm

For the second time in one day, the Knoxville Township Fire Department responded to reports of fields on fire—this time to 108th Place and Perry Street, where smoke and orange embers on several fields greeted the crews.  No injuries were reported, and the cause of the fire is unknown.  Columbia Fire Department and Melcher-Dallas Fire Departments also responded to the scene, with crews at the scene for approximately one hour getting the area under control.

 

Firefighters attend to grass fire

Posted: Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 3:16 pm


Firefighters responded to a small grassfire south of Pella this afternoon. Firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the blaze, which occurred approximately one mile south of Pella on Highway T-17. Crews were only on the scene for about 20 minutes. The Pella Fire Department and Pella Ambulance responded to the scene.

Knoxville Rural Responds to Grass Fire, No Injuries

Posted: Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 1:45 pm

The Knoxville Rural Township Fire Department responded to a grassfire extending over several acres at the 1700 block of 108th Place Wednesday, extinguishing the fire quickly with no injuries.  Fire Chief Kenny Thompson reminds residents conducting controlled burns in the county to always call the Sheriff’s Office at 828-2220 so authorities are aware of the burn.  

 

Ill Pleasantville Residents Getting Better, Cause Remains Unknown

Posted: Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 1:30 pm

Residents from the Pleasantville school district who had an unknown illness earlier this week are recovering, although the cause remains unknown. Marion County Public Health Director Kim Dorn tells KNIA/KRLS News that she appreciated the cooperativeness of residents reporting information and requested samples to health investigators for testing, with results expected in the next week. On Monday 60 Pleasantville students and 17 teachers and staff were absent, reporting symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea. Dorn urges residents to continue washing their hands, not to make food for others if feeling ill, and not share the same dishes or silverware.

Knoxville School Official Touts Nutrition Program in D.C.

Posted: Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 10:00 am

The food services director for the Knoxville School district is in Washington D.C. today, touting the positives of the school’s nutrition program with the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee.  Sources tell KNIA/KRLS News Connie Boldt is sharing how the district has taken steps to eliminate obesity, educate students on healthy eating and improve their overall health goals.  In October East, West and Northstar elementary schools were recognized as winners of the USDA’s “First Gold HealthierUS School Challenge” in Iowa—the first schools to receive the award statewide.

 

Fire destroys farm building

Posted: Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009 at 8:20 am

A fire this morning destroyed an outbuilding on a farm north of Pella. The blaze at 448 Highway T-14 was reported at 6:47 this morning. Firefighters arrived to find the structure engulfed in flames. Captain Randy Bogaard with the Pella Fire Department says the building was a total loss. However, the property owner tells KNIA/KRLS News that he was able to rescue about eight sheep and their lambs from the blaze. Bogaard says heat lamps in the building may have started the fire.

News 3/3/09

Posted: Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009 at 7:28 am

Name selected for new K-9 
Two months and 88 name suggestions later, the Knoxville Police Department has an official name for their K-9 officer: "Knox." Police Chief Dan Losada announced the name at the city council’s meeting last night. Councilwoman Deb McClung submitted the name, and she gets to decide where the first public demonstration of the K-9 will be held. 

Council considers green space ordinance 
An ordinance under consideration by the Pella City Council creates some new green space requirements for developers near Big Rock Park. Planning and Zoning Director George Wesselhoft says the ordinance would require a conservation subdivision, which means developers must provide open space and protect trees that abut the park. The Pella City Council has already approved the first reading of the ordinance. 

City council to hold budget hearing 
A public hearing on the approximately $17 million city budget for next fiscal year is one item of business at the Pella City Council meeting tonight. The council will consider the electric utility budget later in the year. Also on the agenda is a resolution approving the budget for the Pella Area Development Corporation. PADCO again requested $50,000; the same as in 2007 and 2008. The Pella City Council meets at 7:00 p.m. at the Public Safety Complex. 

County receives grant for water quality project 
Marion County received a nearly $200,000 grant for a Competine Creek water quality improvement project Monday. Sources say the Marion County Soil and Water Conservation District received the grantpart of the state-wide $2.36 million awarded to projects aimed to address runoff and drainage, erosion, municipal discharge, and a number of other issues that impact the states waterways.

Ambulance service fees help fund station improvements 
The recently-increased Knoxville ambulance service fees are paid for on a per-use basis by residents needing the service, and not from property taxes. That’s according to Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts. He says the fees – which saw a $348 emergency ambulance increase to $848, among other – sare lower than surrounding counties and cities, and help offset costs for various station improvements throughout the year. 

Pella girls begin state tournament play
The Pella Girls Basketball team will play in the first round of the class three-A State Tournament tonight in Des Moines. The Lady Dutch will take on Spencer at eight. You can hear the play-by-play on 92-point-one KRLS at seven-45. Pella is currently 23-and-one on the season.

Knoxville receives stimulus funds 
Knoxville received $296,000 in federal stimulus dollars for two future overlay projects. That’s according to Knoxville Public Works Director Jeff May. He tells KNIA/KRLS News the money will be used for asphalt overlay projects on Godfrey Lane between 3M and Hormel and Roach Street between Madison and Robinson later this year. 

Bald Eagle Day set for Saturday 
Our nation’s symbol will be celebrated this weekend. The 21st annual Bald Eagle Day is Saturday. Lake Red Rock Park Ranger Tracy Spry with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says attendees can enjoy eagle viewing from North Tailwater Recreation Area and programs at Central College. This includes live eagle shows by the University of Minnesota Raptor Center and raptor shows by Iowa State University Wildlife Care Clinic. The festivities are from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday.

Spring forward and change smoke detector batteries 
Daylight Saving time begins Sunday, March 8th at 2 a.m., and residents will be springing an hour forward. Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts says residents should change their smoke detector batteries when they reset their clocks. He adds changing batteries on carbon monoxide detectors is also encouraged during the change. 

Lions Club to offer vision screenings 
The Pella Lions Club has announced that theyll be offering free vision screenings for children later this month at Pella Regional Health Center. According to the hospital, the screenings are for young children between the ages of 6 and 48 months. Sources say results are sent to the University of Iowa for analysis and then returned to families in two to four weeks. Screenings can be scheduled by calling 621-2358. The event is March 14 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Pella Medical Clinic.

News 3/3/09

Posted: Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009 at 7:28 am

Name selected for new K-9 
Two months and 88 name suggestions later, the Knoxville Police Department has an official name for their K-9 officer: "Knox." Police Chief Dan Losada announced the name at the city council’s meeting last night. Councilwoman Deb McClung submitted the name, and she gets to decide where the first public demonstration of the K-9 will be held. 

Council considers green space ordinance 
An ordinance under consideration by the Pella City Council creates some new green space requirements for developers near Big Rock Park. Planning and Zoning Director George Wesselhoft says the ordinance would require a conservation subdivision, which means developers must provide open space and protect trees that abut the park. The Pella City Council has already approved the first reading of the ordinance. 

City council to hold budget hearing 
A public hearing on the approximately $17 million city budget for next fiscal year is one item of business at the Pella City Council meeting tonight. The council will consider the electric utility budget later in the year. Also on the agenda is a resolution approving the budget for the Pella Area Development Corporation. PADCO again requested $50,000; the same as in 2007 and 2008. The Pella City Council meets at 7:00 p.m. at the Public Safety Complex. 

County receives grant for water quality project 
Marion County received a nearly $200,000 grant for a Competine Creek water quality improvement project Monday. Sources say the Marion County Soil and Water Conservation District received the grantpart of the state-wide $2.36 million awarded to projects aimed to address runoff and drainage, erosion, municipal discharge, and a number of other issues that impact the states waterways.

Ambulance service fees help fund station improvements 
The recently-increased Knoxville ambulance service fees are paid for on a per-use basis by residents needing the service, and not from property taxes. That’s according to Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts. He says the fees – which saw a $348 emergency ambulance increase to $848, among other – sare lower than surrounding counties and cities, and help offset costs for various station improvements throughout the year. 

Pella girls begin state tournament play
The Pella Girls Basketball team will play in the first round of the class three-A State Tournament tonight in Des Moines. The Lady Dutch will take on Spencer at eight. You can hear the play-by-play on 92-point-one KRLS at seven-45. Pella is currently 23-and-one on the season.

Knoxville receives stimulus funds 
Knoxville received $296,000 in federal stimulus dollars for two future overlay projects. That’s according to Knoxville Public Works Director Jeff May. He tells KNIA/KRLS News the money will be used for asphalt overlay projects on Godfrey Lane between 3M and Hormel and Roach Street between Madison and Robinson later this year. 

Bald Eagle Day set for Saturday  n>
Our nation’s symbol will be celebrated this weekend. The 21st annual Bald Eagle Day is Saturday. Lake Red Rock Park Ranger Tracy Spry with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says attendees can enjoy eagle viewing from North Tailwater Recreation Area and programs at Central College. This includes live eagle shows by the University of Minnesota Raptor Center and raptor shows by Iowa State University Wildlife Care Clinic. The festivities are from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday.

Spring forward and change smoke detector batteries 
Daylight Saving time begins Sunday, March 8th at 2 a.m., and residents will be springing an hour forward. Knoxville Fire Chief Mike Roberts says residents should change their smoke detector batteries when they reset their clocks. He adds changing batteries on carbon monoxide detectors is also encouraged during the change. 

Lions Club to offer vision screenings 
The Pella Lions Club has announced that theyll be offering free vision screenings for children later this month at Pella Regional Health Center. According to the hospital, the screenings are for young children between the ages of 6 and 48 months. Sources say results are sent to the University of Iowa for analysis and then returned to families in two to four weeks. Screenings can be scheduled by calling 621-2358. The event is March 14 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Pella Medical Clinic.

News 3/2/09

Posted: Monday, March 2nd, 2009 at 6:53 am

Cub Scouts hold annual banquet 
The Pella Cub Scouts held their annual Blue and Gold Banquet this past Friday. Pack 374 includes seven dens, or about 60 scouts, according to Pack Leader Tim Williams. Scouts were awarded different badges and Williams was recognized with the Wood Badge Award. Williams says a graduation ceremony will be held in May where scouts will advance in rank. 

Knoxville city council to meet 
The Knoxville City Council will consider the first ordinance reading establishing the Knoxville Downtown Streetscape Committee as a city committee this evening at 6:15 in city hall. The council will also review proposed city governing body rules, and consider a request to purchase lockers for the Recreation Center, among other issues. 

Legislators propose school consolidation study 
A bill introduced in the state house would study reorganization of school districts. This bill came after Democratic State Senator Matt McCoy raised the idea of forced consolidation of rural school districts with less than 750 students. Republican State Representative Jim Van Engelenhoven says he hopes they can look at the whole picture, as this proposal does raise transportation issues. He also stresses the importance of maintaining quality education in rural Iowa.

Deadline nears for naming of K-9 
Residents have from now until this morning at 8 to suggest a name for Knoxvilles new K-9 Police Dog. That’s according to Knoxville Police chief Dan Losada. He says he hopes to announce the winning name at Mondays City Council meeting. The department has received 87 names so far, and residents can call the police station or e-mail names to chief Losada at policechief@cityofknoxville.us. 

Business community undergoes changes 
Residents may have noticed some recent changes to the Pella business community. Chamber of Commerce Director Karen Eischen says several stores have relocated while other businesses have recently opened their doors. Eischen says this is a sign that despite the economy, some businesses are looking to take advantage of opportunities they have when costs are lower to expand or try new markets. 

Daylight saving begins Sunday 
It will be time to spring forward an hour as Daylight Saving time begins Sunday, March 8th at 2 a.m. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says the change will mean darker mornings and more daylight in the evening, and urges drivers to watch out for pedestrians or cyclists on the road. He says despite some cars having automatic headlights, residents should manually turn them on if needed. Losada says pedestrians should wear bright colors or reflectors in dim lighting conditions. 

Metro Opera to perform at Pella school 
The opera is coming to Jefferson Intermediate School in Pella. Vocal teacher Lori Muller says the Des Moines Metro Opera will perform for fifth-graders on Wednesday morning. Students will see "A Dream Unfulfilled: The Saga of George Washington Carver." Muller says this gives children an opportunity to experience opera firsthand, which often changes their preconceptions about the art form. 

Residents required to have trash pick-up service 
Knoxville residents who do not have a trash pick-up service are in violation of the city code, and risk being fined. Knoxville Community Service Officer Arlene Worrall says the fines for residents who do not have a trash removal service are $100 for the first offence, with $200 and $500 for the second and third offenses, respectively. Worrall says to call her at 828-0541 with questions of for more information. 

Volunteers sought at Lake Red Rock 
Volunteer opportunities are still available at Lake Red Rock, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The corps says some volunteer positions come with a free campsite at Lake Red Rock. Volunteers perform a variety of duties such as assisting campers, collecting fees and cleaning the bike trail. For more information, contact Park Ranger Junifer Kruse at 628-8690 or 828-7522. 

Drivers encouraged to use caution as weather warms 
With spring just around the corner, local law enforcement says drivers should report any suspicious or unsafe behavior on the roads. The Marion County Sheriff’s Office says that on any given weekend in the evening, one in 10 drivers on the public roadway is legally impaired. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says drivers should use caution as the weather warms up and more children, bicycles and motorcycles will be in the area. 

News 3/2/09

Posted: Monday, March 2nd, 2009 at 6:53 am

Cub Scouts hold annual banquet 
The Pella Cub Scouts held their annual Blue and Gold Banquet this past Friday. Pack 374 includes seven dens, or about 60 scouts, according to Pack Leader Tim Williams. Scouts were awarded different badges and Williams was recognized with the Wood Badge Award. Williams says a graduation ceremony will be held in May where scouts will advance in rank. 

Knoxville city council to meet 
The Knoxville City Council will consider the first ordinance reading establishing the Knoxville Downtown Streetscape Committee as a city committee this evening at 6:15 in city hall. The council will also review proposed city governing body rules, and consider a request to purchase lockers for the Recreation Center, among other issues. 

Legislators propose school consolidation study 
A bill introduced in the state house would study reorganization of school districts. This bill came after Democratic State Senator Matt McCoy raised the idea of forced consolidation of rural school districts with less than 750 students. Republican State Representative Jim Van Engelenhoven says he hopes they can look at the whole picture, as this proposal does raise transportation issues. He also stresses the importance of maintaining quality education in rural Iowa.

Deadline nears for naming of K-9 
Residents have from now until this morning at 8 to suggest a name for Knoxvilles new K-9 Police Dog. That’s according to Knoxville Police chief Dan Losada. He says he hopes to announce the winning name at Mondays City Council meeting. The department has received 87 names so far, and residents can call the police station or e-mail names to chief Losada at policechief@cityofknoxville.us. 

Business community undergoes changes 
Residents may have noticed some recent changes to the Pella business community. Chamber of Commerce Director Karen Eischen says several stores have relocated while other businesses have recently opened their doors. Eischen says this is a sign that despite the economy, some businesses are looking to take advantage of opportunities they have when costs are lower to expand or try new markets. 

Daylight saving begins Sunday 
It will be time to spring forward an hour as Daylight Saving time begins Sunday, March 8th at 2 a.m. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says the change will mean darker mornings and more daylight in the evening, and urges drivers to watch out for pedestrians or cyclists on the road. He says despite some cars having automatic headlights, residents should manually turn them on if needed. Losada says pedestrians should wear bright colors or reflectors in dim lighting conditions. 

Metro Opera to perform at Pella school 
The opera is coming to Jefferson Intermediate School in Pella. Vocal teacher Lori Muller says the Des Moines Metro Opera will perform for fifth-graders on Wednesday morning. Students will see "A Dream Unfulfilled: The Saga of George Washington Carver." Muller says this gives children an opportunity to experience opera firsthand, which often changes their preconceptions about the art form. 

Re
sidents required to have trash pick-up service
 
Knoxville residents who do not have a trash pick-up service are in violation of the city code, and risk being fined. Knoxville Community Service Officer Arlene Worrall says the fines for residents who do not have a trash removal service are $100 for the first offence, with $200 and $500 for the second and third offenses, respectively. Worrall says to call her at 828-0541 with questions of for more information. 

Volunteers sought at Lake Red Rock 
Volunteer opportunities are still available at Lake Red Rock, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The corps says some volunteer positions come with a free campsite at Lake Red Rock. Volunteers perform a variety of duties such as assisting campers, collecting fees and cleaning the bike trail. For more information, contact Park Ranger Junifer Kruse at 628-8690 or 828-7522. 

Drivers encouraged to use caution as weather warms 
With spring just around the corner, local law enforcement says drivers should report any suspicious or unsafe behavior on the roads. The Marion County Sheriff’s Office says that on any given weekend in the evening, one in 10 drivers on the public roadway is legally impaired. Knoxville Police Chief Dan Losada says drivers should use caution as the weather warms up and more children, bicycles and motorcycles will be in the area. 

News 3/1/09

Posted: Sunday, March 1st, 2009 at 7:44 am

Knoxville Council Meets Monday
The Knoxville City Council will consider the first ordinance reading establishing the Knoxville Downtown Streetscape Committee as a city committee Monday evening at 6:15 in city hall. The council will also review proposed city governing body rules, and consider a request to purchase lockers for the Recreation Center, among other issues.

Business’ Growing in Pella
Residents may have noticed some recent changes to the Pella business community. Chamber of Commerce Director Karen Eischen says several stores have re-located while other businesses have recently opened their doors. Eischen says this is a sign that despite the economy, some businesses are looking to advantage of opportunities they have when costs are lower to expand or try new markets.

Deadline to Name Knoxville K-9 Cop
Residents have from now until Monday morning at 8 to suggest a name for Knoxvilles new K-9 Police Dog. Thats according to Knoxville Police chief Dan Losada. He says he hopes to announce the winning name at Mondays City Council meeting. The department has received 87 names so far, and residents can call the police station or e-mail names to chief Losada at policechief@cityofknoxville.us.

Opera Coming to Jefferson Intermediate
The opera is coming to Jefferson Intermediate School in Pella. Vocal teacher Lori Muller says the Des Moines Metro Opera will perform for fifth-graders this coming Wednesday morning. Students will see A Dream Unfulfilled: The Saga of George Washington Carver. Muller says this gives children an opportunity to experience opera firsthand, which often changes their preconceptions about the art form.

Knoxville School Board Tables Budget Cuts for Now
After a lengthy discussion earlier this week, the Knoxville School Board tabled a discussion on a proposed 6 to 6.5% general fund budget reduction to a special meeting on March 25th. Among some of the budget issues which could be reexamined include: maintaining the athletic director position for both the high school and middle school, modifying or retaining the contract for the districts energy manager, and to consider cutting the middle schools assistant principal position, among other issues.

Firm to Conduct Search for New Central College President
A Washington D.C. firm will conduct a nationwide search for a new Central College president. Thats according to Central College Board of Trustees Chairman David Wesselink. He says the firm Academic Search specializes in finding senior executives for private colleges and universities. Current President Dr. David Roe recently announced he will retire in June 2010. Roe says this is part of a long-term transition plan as the traditional retirement age for senior administrators is 65, which was extended by the Board of Trustees due to the colleges current capitol fundraising campaign. Roe will be 69 at the time of his retirement.

Knoxville Levy Rate Increases Slightly
The proposed levy rate for the 2009-10 Knoxville city budget is slightly higher than last year at $15.04 per $1,000 of taxable valuation. Knoxville City Manager Dick Schrad says the proposed general fund budget is $3.17 million, up $40,000 from last year. He says the increase is due to built in costs, including a 3.25% wage increase from a union labor contract for some city employees and increased fuel costs, among others.

Pella Man Accused of Sexual Assault
A Pella man faces a sexual assault charge. Lieutenant Dave Beukelman with the Pella Police Department says 46-year-old Andre M. Staples is charged with sexual assault in the third-degree, a class C felony. The charge stems from an alleged incident in October of 2008. Buekelman says a preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 6 at 9:30 a.m. at the Marion County Courthouse.