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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.