Council Discusses Aerator

city councilSheldon, Iowa — The City of Sheldon may or may not add an aerator to the Sheldon Crossing Pond.  The pond has been stocked with fish, mainly bluegills, crappies and bass, and they have been advised by the O’Brien County Conservation Director to add an aerator to the pond to make sure the fish are supplied with an adequate supply of oxygen.  The total cost of the aerators and the installation of an electrical line to the pond is estimated at about $12,000.  Council member Greg Geels said he felt the City should ask other sources about the need for an aerator.  The Council voted to approve spending up to $12,000 on the project if they consulted with other sources and still felt the installation of the aerators would be beneficial.

In other news the Council approved a statement of completion on the Airport Lighting Rehabilitation Project and heard the news that the Runger Improvement Project has been completed.    They also approved spending $19,500 for work to be done by DGR Engineering to develop preliminary plans for improvements at the Wastewater Treatment Facility.  Public Works Director Todd Uhl said the  requirements to operate under the new permit are extensive and will be costly, but they have 52 months to complete the changes.  There are no funds in the current budget for this but the engineering fee can be paid out of the Depreciation Account.  After DGR’S report is completed the City will get an idea of some of the cost and will ask for that to be included in the budget for the next fiscal year.

The Council also heard from Sheldon resident Jill Collen who voiced her concerns about the projected construction cost and operating cost of the proposed events center.  She said she doesn’t see the events center as a draw to attract people to live in Sheldon.  She also suggested a scaled back version of the center since not many weddings need room for 250 people or more.

And the council announced December 2nd at 4:30 p.m. as the date and time for a Public Hearing on the City’s five year Capital Improvement Plan.

Fire Department Responds To Field Fire Call

Rock Valley, Iowa — The Rock Valley Fire Department responded to the report of a field fire on Tuesday, November 3rd.
RVFD Rock Valley Fire
According to Rock Valley Fire Chief John Wallenburg, the fire department was paged out about 11:20 AM on Tuesday. He says the fire was reported to be west of Dogwood Avenue on 360th Street. That’s five miles south and three west of Rock Valley or about five miles east of Hudson on county road B30.

Wallenburg says that by the time the department arrived, the fire had already been put out by a farmer with a tractor and disk.

Fire officials remind people that although we have now had some rain, they still need to be careful.

Reward Offered In NCC ATM Burglary

crime scene tape over lightbarSheldon, Iowa — The Sheldon Police Dept., Sioux County Sheriff’s Office and the O’Brien County Sheriff’s Office are conducting a joint investigation into a burglary at Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon, Iowa. Authorities say the burglary occurred in the early morning hours of Monday November 2, 2015 between 1:00 AM and 5:00 AM. The suspect or suspects are said to have forcibly entered a building on the campus of Northwest Iowa Community College and then forcibly entered an ATM machine located inside the building. Police say the ATM was heavily damaged and an undisclosed amount of cash was taken from the machine.

A spokesman for Iowa State Bank in Sheldon wanted to assure the bank’s customers that they will not be affected by the theft of the cash from this machine.

The investigating law enforcement agencies are asking for the assistance from anyone in the general public who might have information about this crime to contact their local law enforcement agency. The O’Brien County Crime Dusters program is offering a $1000 reward to anyone who provides information on this crime that leads to the arrest and conviction of the offenders.

You may provide information on this crime or any other crimes by calling the O’Brien County Sheriff’s Office at 712-957-3415. Upon calling you will be put in contact with a deputy sheriff who will take your information. People can also provide information or tips on crimes by using the “Hot Tip” link or “e-mail” button at Arrangements can be made to assist the people who want to remain anonymous but still be eligible for the reward.

UPDATE: Firefighters Called To Barn Fire

11-4-15 Fire 3Sheldon, Iowa — Sheldon Firefighters were called to a structure fire in a barn located about a block west of Washington Avenue on Highway 18 in Sheldon around 7:45 this morning.

Witnesses say a great deal of smoke was visible coming from the building.

According to Sheldon Fire Company Chief Jerry Meyer, the address of the fire was 821 Park Street in Sheldon. Park Street is Highway 18.

He says when firefighters arrived, they saw smoke coming out the eves of the barn. He says firefighters attacked the fire through ground level doors and using the ladder truck through the hay loft door. Using water with foam firefighters had the fire under control within about 45 minutes after the initial attack, according to Meyer.

He says the structure sustained heavy damage but it is still standing.

According to the chief, the cause is under investigation and a damage estimate is not available.

The Fire Company responded with approximately 20 firefighters and the Sanborn Fire Department was called to assist with additional manpower.

The Fire Company was on scene for about three and a half hours and was also assisted by the Sheldon Community Ambulance Team and law enforcement.

He says there were no injuries reported.

Municipal Election Results

Northwest Iowa — Voters in Iowa selected municipal candidates and decided on local issues on Tuesday.
vote voting ballot
Sheldon voters approved a 2% increase in the city’s hotel motel tax by 76.6%. The tax will begin to be collected at the state maximum of 7% on January 1st.

For the George City Council there were six people running for three positions. Apparent winners were Ande Bruinsma, Kary Conaway, and Norman Riemersma.

Larchwood and Lester voters were both asked if their city should be authorized to establish a municipal gas utility by constructing the necessary facilities for the operation of a natural gas distribution system. Larchwood voters approved it by 87 percent, and Lester by nearly 84 percent.

In Rock Rapids four people ran for three positions on the City Council. Unofficial winners were incumbents Marlene Bowers and Scott Schneidermann and challenger Steve Wells.

In Orange City four people ran for three available positions on the council. Winners were Chad Oolman, Tony Vande Brake, and Earl Woudstra. Orange City voters were also asked if the city should change the term of members of the library board of trustees to four years. That passed by almost 94 percent.

In Sioux Center voters were asked if the city should issue $4 million in General Obligation Capital Loan Notes for “aiding, planning and undertaking an urban renewal project which will involve the study, planning, design and construction of the US Highway #75 Enhanced Four Lane Improvement Project.” The majority of voters liked the plan, but it needed 60 percent to pass, and only received 56.45 percent.

In Sibley, voters were asked whether to change the composition of the City Library Board of Trustees to allow one bona fide citizen and resident of an unincorporated area of Osceola County over the age of eighteen to be qualified to be appointed to the Library Board of Trustees. The measure passed, with about 80 percent of voters voting “yes”.

Full (unofficial) results:
2015 Sioux County Unofficial Results-Cities under Runoff Ordinance (1)

2015 Sioux County Unofficial Results

Write-in votes for Boyden 2015

Chatsworth Write-In votes 2015

O’Brien County 2015 Unofficial Municipal Election Results

Osceola County 2015 Unofficial Municipal Election Results

Lyon County 2015 Unofficial Municipal Election Results

Dinner Theatres This Week In Rock Rapids, Boyden/George

Northwest Iowa — Fall is dinner theatre season in northwest Iowa. Two performances are coming up this week, with a third one coming up in a couple of weeks.
Otter Valley
The Otter Valley dinner theatre starts this Wednesday. Director Tom Rokusek tells us No Body Like Jimmy is a funny show.

He gives us a little idea of the plot.

Rokusek says it’s a loaded cast, with all veteran performers.

Unfortunately, unless someone would cancel, we’ve been told that the show is sold out. Otter Valley shows are performed at the Otter Valley Golf and Country Club between Boyden and George.

Tickets are also going fast for the River Valley Players dinner theatre, As Long As We Both Shall Live, coming up Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of this week at the Forster Community Center in Rock Rapids.

One of the actors, Gary Van Whye tells us about the show, which he says is probably one of the funniest ones they’ve ever done.

He tells us about the cast.

He says Tony’s Catering will again provide the meal, and it’s buffet style so you don’t need to pick an entrée when you reserve your seat. Van Whye says for tickets you can call the Rock Rapids Chamber at 712-472-3456.

Also, Off Off Broadway is doing a dinner theatre later this month, called Boeing, Boeing at the Ashton Community Center. We’ll talk to King Hickman in a future newscast and find out what that show is all about.