March 14, 2015 - 8:24 am - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Sibley man has been sentenced on a bad check charge.
bank check fraud
The Lyon County Attorney’s Office reports that Jose Armando Ayala Lopez of Sibley has been convicted of Theft in the Third Degree, an Aggravated Misdemeanor.

The charge stems from a criminal complaint stating that in September, 2014, Ayala Lopez made and delivered a check to GCC Ready Mix in Little Rock. The check was returned due to insufficient funds.

Ayala Lopez was sentenced to 365 days in the Lyon County Jail with all but five days suspended, and probation to the Third Judicial District for one year.

Ayala Lopez was also ordered to pay restitution immediately to GCC Ready Mix and to pay fines and court costs.

March 12, 2015 - 11:06 am - Posted in News

Sheldon, Iowa — The Sheldon Community Schools Board of Education accepted letters of resignation from seven people during Wednesday night’s regular monthly meeting.

Those resigning include:  High School Principal and Head Football Coach Matt Meendering who has accepted a position as High School Principal at Dowling Catholic High School in Des Moines; Beth Bunkers and Kay Youngs who are both taking early retirement from the District; Adam Orban who is leaving to accept a Vocal Music Teacher position with the Glenwood Community Schools; Jen VanWyk, who has accepted a teaching job in another district, Dave Gross, who is leaving his position at East Elementary; and Dance Team Head Coach Daphne Feekes.  The Board accepted all seven resignations.

In other District employee-related news, the Board voted to issue teacher contracts for the 2015/16 school year.  The complete list of teacher salaries for the 2015/16 school year can be found by clicking here.  The Board also issued coaching contracts for the upcoming school year.  That list can be viewed by clicking here.

The Board had a discussion about the KeBecca special education services contract.  Superintendent Robin Spears told the Board that the program has a maximum capacity of seven students, but the District has never had more than six students in the program at any time.  He says that currently there are only two Sheldon students in the program and four students from other school districts.  Spears says he’s “leaning toward a recommendation that the District discontinue the KeBecca Program and send it’s two students back to Children’s Home Services in Sioux Falls.”  No action was taken at Wednesday’s meeting, but the Board scheduled a Special Meeting next Wednesday, March 18th, at 6:30 pm to discuss this issue, along with the District’s employee health insurance.

The Board also set the date and time for their FY-2016 Budget Hearing and Certification.  It will be held during the April Regular Monthly Meeting, Wednesday April 8th.  The meeting will be called to order at 6:00 pm, with the Budget Hearing and Certification scheduled for 6:30.

March 11, 2015 - 5:36 pm - Posted in News

Sibley and Rock Rapids, Iowa — It’s Farm and Home Show season in northwest Iowa and two of them are going on this week.
Sibley Chamber 2015_SVA
We talked to Sheryl Peters, the Sibley Chamber Director. She tells us that the show is going to be in a different location this year.

She says the festivities start at 8 AM with a fundraiser breakfast.

The breakfast is also being served at the elementary building. After that, the real Farm and Home Show starts at 9.

Peters says Osceola Community Hospital will be showcasing the Mega Heart Exhibit, where you can learn how your heart works, says Peters.

Again, the Sibley Farm and Home Show is Saturday from 9 to 2 with an FFA Breakfast at 8, all at the Sibley-Ocheyedan Elementary School.

Meanwhile, the Rock Rapids Farm and Home Show is this Thursday, March 12th. Rock Rapids Chamber Director Angie Jager tells us about it.

She says new this year are some chamber gift certificate drawings. The American Legion and VFW are also teaming up in the evening for a pancake supper. That’s the Rock Rapids Farm and Home Show, on Thursday, March 12th, at the Forster Community Center from 2 to 8 PM.

If your browser or device cannot access the audio players above, here are the direct links to the audio sound bytes:

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March 10, 2015 - 1:45 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — A Sibley mOsceola County Courthouse Closeup_SVAan has been sentenced on burglary charges.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office reports that 40-year-old Chad Anthony Schmitt of Sibley pled guilty to two counts of Burglary in the 3rd Degree, Class “D” Felonies. On each of the burglary offenses he was sentenced to five years in prison, with all time suspended. Schmitt will serve three years probation to the Iowa Department of Corrections.

These sentences are imposed concurrently with each other but consecutively to the sentence for an OWI conviction. That sentence was for six months in jail, with all time suspended except for 45 days, with credit for time served. Also, on each burglary offense Schmitt is to pay a fine of $750 and surcharges and court costs. He was also ordered to pay restitution to the victim.

March 7, 2015 - 10:09 am - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — Four people were arrested on drug charges on Friday, March 6, 2015 at a Sibley motel.
Osceola Sheriff Car 72-2
The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office reports they carried out a search warrant on four rooms and two motor vehicles at the Sibley Inn Motel in Sibley. Four people were taken into custody. Three of them were charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance, alleged to be marijuana; a serious misdemeanor.

Arrested were 28-year-old Raphael Dewayne Holyfield of Moody, Alabama; 23-year-old Ranzell Marquez Jones of Montevallo Alabama; and 28-year-old Printice Leon Banks, who had no address. Twenty-two-year-old Dejuan Henry Ramsey Andrews of Central Point, Alabama was charged with Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, a Simple Misdemeanor. Holyfield and Jones were also charged with alleged Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, a simple misdemeanor.

Holyfield and Jones are being held on a $1300 bond, Banks on a $1000 bond, and Andrews on a $300 bond. The Iowa Great Lakes Drug Task Force assisted with the investigation.

March 7, 2015 - 10:08 am - Posted in News

Allendorf, Iowa — A Sibley man was taken to the hospital after an accident on Friday, March 6, 2015 near Allendorf.
Law Enforcement Lightbar red
The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 11:00 AM, 32-year-old Patrick Webb of Sibley was driving a Volkswagen Passat eastbound on Highway 9. Sixty-two-year-old Julio Mora-Vargas of Draper, UT was driving a Freightliner semi owned by Hilt, Incorporated of Salt Lake City, UT.

The report says Mora-Vargas was stopped at the northbound stop sign on Highway 59 and pulled the semi into the highway, failing to see the Webb vehicle. The Passat hit the Freightliner broadside.

Webb was transported to the Osceola Community Hospital by the Sibley Ambulance. Mora-Vargas was not injured.

Webb’s vehicle received approximately $10,000 in damage. The Freightliner received approximately $20,000 in damage.

Also assisting at the scene were the Sibley Fire Department and the Iowa State Patrol.

March 3, 2015 - 10:39 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — A hotel/motel tax in the rural areas of Osceola County has apparently been approved by voters there.
voting optical reader machine
The measure passed 88.8 percent to 11.1 percent. 198 ballots were cast, with 178 voting “yes,” and 22 voting “no.”

The tax will only be paid by people who stay at motels in the rural portions of Osceola County.

The text of the measure read, “Shall the Board of Supervisors, Osceola County, Iowa, be authorized to impose a hotel and motel tax at the rate of five percent (5%) in the unincorporated area of Osceola County, effective July 1, 2015 which shall be used by Osceola County according to Iowa Code Section 423A.7(4), 2013 Code of Iowa.”

According to that code section, at least half of the money raised through the tax has to be used for tourism-related activities. The other half can go in the county general fund.

March 2, 2015 - 6:20 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — Voters in the rural portion of Osceola County are going to the polls this Tuesday, March 3rd to decide the fate of a hotel/motel tax.

This is coming to a vote because the new AmericInn will be outside of Sibley, which already has a tax. Because the motel is in the rural area, only the rural people can vote on it.

This is a vote for a tax that would be paid only by people who stay at the motel.

The text of the measure reads, “Shall the Board of Supervisors, Osceola County, Iowa, be authorized to impose a hotel and motel tax at the rate of five percent (5%) in the unincorporated area of Osceola County, effective July 1, 2015 which shall be used by Osceola County according to Iowa Code Section 423A.7(4), 2013 Code of Iowa.”

The code says the county has to spend at least fifty percent of the revenues from the tax for recreation, convention, cultural, or entertainment facilities including but not limited to memorial buildings, halls and monuments, civic center convention buildings, auditoriums, coliseums, and parking areas or for the promotion and encouragement of tourist and convention business in the county and surrounding areas. The other half can go into the general fund of the county.

February 26, 2015 - 11:03 am - Posted in News

If you have some experience with Microsoft Word, it is time to get hands-on experience discovering the tools and features of Microsoft Excel 2013. Excel is a powerful program that helps users to create and organize spreadsheets that will save you time, help you communicate better and have a professional look. In this class, the instructor will guide you through the steps of building a user-friendly worksheet, both for the reader and the creator. Then you will be introduced to the important formula/function feature in Excel. Learning how to use Excel formulas is very critical for the successful use of spreadsheet software. The more you learn about formulas, the more you will want to know!

This class will be held at Northwest Iowa Community College in Room 514H, Section #43940 on Tuesdays, March 17 and 24 from 5:30—9:30 pm. OR in the Sioux Center Library Computer Lab, Section #43939, on Thursdays, March 19 and 26 from 12:30—4:30 pm.

Twyla Vogel will be the instructor for the class. The cost is $59.

To register, call Northwest Iowa Community College at 712-324-5061 or 800-352-4907 and ask for Continuing Education.

February 23, 2015 - 5:30 pm - Posted in News

Des Moines, Iowa — Senator David Johnson from Ocheyedan says he’s introducing a bill that would increase the state sales tax .375 of a percent. Johnson says his idea is to use the extra revenue for soil and water conservation.
johnson, david
The .375 percent hike would make the state sales tax 6.375 percent, and would raise an estimated $150 million a year, according to Johnson. Johnson said he wanted to introduce the legislation “after the fuel tax issue was settled.”

He says the Iowa House may have a similar bill, but differences between the bills would have to be hammered out.

The Senator says he believes Iowans want quality of life and clean water. He says the way to get cleaner water is through soil and water conservation; something that is being cut on the national level. He says the state needs to monitor more rivers, streams and lakes.