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News 4/15/09



Grand Opening set for HOF upgrades 
Area residents are invited to the Grand Opening of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fames new Library & Research Center and Sprint Car Theatre in Knoxville May 1st from 7 to 9 p.m. The museums executive director, Bob Baker, says the Pella Rolscreen Foundation and US Smokeless Tobacco Theatre will show select sprint car-related films, while the Library & Research Center will be a chance for residents to research sprint car history. 

Former City Hall to become ministry center 
The old Pella City Hall at 717 Main Street will eventually become a ministry center. That’s according to new owner Neil Wilson, who says they’ve begun the process of renovating the building. Wilson says the ministry center could include bible study, prayer events, and marriage mentoring. He says they hope to open by the fall. The landmark dog statues will remain per the conservation easement that came with the building. 

Assessor’s office keeps inspection schedule 
The Marion County Assessor’s Office is working to re-inspect all Marion County properties every five to six years. That’s according to Marion County Assessor Drew Sanders. He says the purpose of the re-inspections is to keep both property assessments and Assessors Office information as up to date as possible. Sanders say he and his staff have already completed one of the county townships and some of the unincorporated towns and continue to cycle through the county. 

Another court furlough is April 24 
The next furlough day for the Marion County Courthouse is set for April 24th as the state court offices will be closed due to state budget cuts. The state offices on the third and fourth floors of the Marion County courthouse will be closed on the 24th, with the rest of the courthouse open as usual. 

Normal post office hours for Tax Day 
Procrastinators take note – local post offices will have regular hours on Tax Day. Both the Pella and Knoxville Post Offices tell KNIA/KRLS News that they won’t have extended hours today. The Pella Post Office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. while the Knoxville Post Office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Knoxville Postmaster Jack Moorhead says taxpayers also need to make sure the mailing has enough postage and suggests using more rather than less. 

Combating spring allergies 
The melting of snow and budding of trees can mean many things in Marion County: including spring allergies for residents. That’s according to Katie Todd, nurse practitioner at Knoxville Hospital & Clinics. She says Knoxville Hospital & Clinics has a variety of treatment for residents experiencing a seasonal runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing, coughing and more allergy symptoms. 

School Board to hold special meeting 
The Pella School Board will hold a special meeting this afternoon. According to the agenda, the board will consider bids for sale of about $2.1 million in tax revenue bonds. The district is looking to fund improvements to athletic facilities by bonding against sales tax revenues. Other items on the agenda include a financial advisory services agreement and an agreement with the Ottumwa School District for boys swimming. The Pella School Board meets at 4:30 p.m. at the administration office.

Hoffman graduates from Law Enforcement Academy 
The newest member of the Pella Police Department recently completed the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. Officer Eric Hoffman graduated from the program this past Friday, according to Police Chief Michael Marcinkowski. Hoffman received the Top Gun Award while at the academy but Marcinkowski says hopefully he’ll never need to use his marksmanship skills.

Knoxville prom is Saturday 
Its a Mardi Gras Mambo theme with a casino flavor this Saturday for the Knoxville High Schools 2009 prom from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. That’s according to Kelly Garrington the head junior class prom sponsor. She says residents can view a prom open house from 5 to 6 p.m. with the main student walk-in from 7 to 8 p.m. 

Leadership group tours Marion County 
Tourism is vital to the economic success of Marion County. That was the message during a special tour last night done through the Leadership Red Rock program. Attendees had the opportunity to see the Lake Red Rock Visitor Center, tour the Vermeer Mill in Pella and visit the Sprint Car Hall of Fame and Museum in Knoxville. This was the last Leadership Red Rock class before graduation May 19.