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Wed
07
Feb

Early donations fuel Allamakee County Sheriff Department's pursuit of drone purchase to aid in local emergency situations Additional donations welcome


Donations bring drone purchase closer to reality ... A pair of local organizations recently presented donations to the Allamakee County Sheriff and Emergency Management Departments to aid in the purchase of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), more commonly known as a drone, for use in emergency situations throughout the county. Pictured above during the presentation of a $1,000 donation from the Rivers & Bluffs Classic Tractor Club are, left to right, Lyle Mohwinkle of the Rivers & Bluffs Classic Tractor Club, Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick and Greg Mohwinkle of the Rivers & Bluffs Classic Tractor Club. Pictured below during the presentation of a $500 donation from the Waukon Lions Club are, left to right, Allamakee County Emergency Management Coordinator Corey Snitker, Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick and Tom Phipps and Jeff Moe of the Waukon Lions Club. Standard photos by Joe Moses.

The Inspire 1 v2.0 ... Pictured above is the Inspire 1 v2.0 drone the Allamakee County Sheriff Department is looking to purchase for use in emergency situations. Photo courtesy DSLR Pros.

Thermal imaging ... One of the features of the drone being sought by the Allamakee County Sheriff Department is a thermal imaging camera that can be used in searches for missing individuals or to detect hot spots in fire attacks or anything else emitting heat. The photo above is an aerial view that captured images of persons on the ground below, which are depicted by the red areas in the photo that indicate a heat source; in this case, body heat, which would be more readily viewable by the thermal imaging camera in situations such as night searches or in areas of heavier vegetation. Photo courtesy of Decorah Fire Department.

by Joe Moses
 
The Allamakee County Sheriff Department and the Allamakee County Emergency Management Office have begun an initiative to purchase an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), otherwise known as a drone, for emergency search and rescue use within Allamakee County and surrounding areas. It has been proven to local authorities that the use of a drone can save valuable time during emergency situations and may also provide safety for first responders and victims in certain situations.

Wed
07
Feb

Supervisors discuss application policy for property tax suspension, among other items

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors met in regular session Monday, February 5 to address a full agenda of items, including the appointment of Medical Examiner, Deputy Medical Examiner and Medical Examiner Investigator, discussion of setting a date and time for the Fiscal-Year 2019 Allamakee County budget and discussion of a tax suspension policy in Allamakee County. Chairperson Pro-Tem Dennis Koenig called the meeting to order in the absence of Chairperson Larry Schellhammer.

There were no members of the public in attendance. During the Public Comment portion of the meeting, Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour discussed that the Secondary Roads Department was working to clear roads Sunday with additional snow forecasted this week.

Wed
07
Feb

Local law enforcement warns of increased scam telephone calls during income tax season

Local law enforcement authorities want to remind people, especially since the tax season is in full swing, that they have received a lot of calls regarding scams. One very popular scam is from someone posing as an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agent. The caller tells the victim that they owe the IRS money and that if they either hang up or don't pay, they will have the victim arrested. These individuals are usually very intimidating in their threats.

"I've seen call recipients nearly in tears after talking to one of these scammers," shared Waukon Assistant Police Chief Paul Wagner. "In my 13-year career, I have never been involved in the arrest of someone that either owes the IRS money or has hung up on an IRS agent. I suspect that if someone owes the IRS money, they already know it. Similar to the 'if it's too good to be true...' adage, if it's too bad to be true, it probably is."

Wed
07
Feb

Nominations sought for Allamakee County Dairy Banquet set for March 24

Award nominations due by February 23; Princess applications due by March 1

The 2018 Allamakee County Dairy Banquet will be held Saturday, March 24 at the Allamakee County Fairgrounds Pavilion in Waukon. The meal will be served from 7-8:30 p.m., with the program starting at 8 p.m. The annual celebration recognizes the importance of the dairy industry in Allamakee County and the contributions dairy families make to the industry.

Every year, top producers from the county are recognized at the banquet. In addition, several other awards are presented that evening. The Allamakee Dairy Promotion Board and the Allamakee County Extension Office are accepting nominations through February 23 for the following awards:

Wed
31
Jan

January 23 fire at Mulligan's Grill Pub renders building a total loss


Mulligan's Grill Pub deemed a total loss after January 23 blaze ... The Iowa State Fire Marshal's Office has been unable to officially determine the cause of the Tuesday evening, January 23 fire that destroyed the interior of Mulligan's Grill Pub in south Waukon. A lack of supporting evidence and the extent of damage from the blaze has resulted in that unproven cause. Mulligan's Grill Pub owner Dana Ruegnitz did relay that suspicious or criminal activity has been ruled out as a cause, and says at this point in time his future plans for the business he bought just short of two years ago also remain undetermined. A total of 32 volunteers from the Waukon Area Fire Protection District responded to the blaze, knocking down interior flames in short order and continuing to battle remnants of the fire in the complex attic structure of the building, with the help of an aerial ladder truck from the Decorah Fire Department (pictured above), until the fire was officially ruled extinguished at 2 a.m. Wednesday, January 24. Crew members remained on the scene to monitor and control hot spots until 10 a.m. that morning, about 12 hours after the fire was initially reported. Additional photos can be found on Page 12A in the print edition and e-edition of The Standard.

The night of Tuesday, January 23 brought a great deal of change, impact and uncertainty to the local area, from the more personal perspective of an individual business owner to the broader reach of his customer base and the greater community that has supported his venture. A fire that evening destroyed the interior of Mulligan's Grill Pub, located at 610 Rossville Road in Waukon, a blaze that may not have left much exterior evidence but certainly took its toll on the interior of the restaurant and its attic space.

Wed
31
Jan

Dr. David Schwartz resigns from Mayo Clinic

The Waukon and surrounding community was taken by surprise Thursday, January 25 to learn that long-time family physician Dr. David Schwartz is no longer providing services at the Mayo Clinic Health System in Waukon.

Mayo Clinic released the following statement through its Public Affairs Department: "David B. Schwartz, M.D., has resigned his position at the Waukon Clinic. At Mayo Clinic Health System, our top priority is our patients and we remain committed to meeting the needs of our patients and communities. Plans are in place to ensure a smooth transition of care for all patients of the Waukon Clinic."

Wed
31
Jan

Midterm Precinct Caucuses scheduled for February 5

Voter registration will be available at caucus sites that evening

Registered Republican and Democrat voters across the state of Iowa have the opportunity to participate in Iowa's first-in-the-nation caucuses scheduled for Monday, February 5. To attend a caucus, voters must be registered as either Democrat or Republican, but registration will be allowed at each of the caucus sites. Local caucus locations for both political parties for the February 5 event are featured below and at right in the bordered boxes.

Allamakee County Republican Party
2018 Caucus Locations
Monday, February 5 at 7 p.m.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for registration

Wed
31
Jan

"Voter Ready" initiative launched to prepare for Iowa election law changes

Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate announced the “Voter Ready” outreach initiative in early January to ensure Iowans are informed about recent election law changes, including the implementation of Voter ID. The “Voter Ready” educational effort breaks down the process into three simple action steps for voters: register to vote, bring  their ID, cast their ballot. Iowans who follow those three steps should have an easy time participating in the 2018 elections, according to Secretary Pate.

Fri
26
Jan

Dr. David Schwartz resigns from Mayo Clinic in Waukon

The Waukon and surrounding community was taken by surprise Thursday, January 25 to learn that long-time family physician Dr. David Schwartz is no longer providing services at the Mayo Clinic in Waukon. Mayo Clinic released the following statement through its Public Affairs Department: "David B. Schwartz, M.D., has resigned his position at the Waukon Clinic. At Mayo Clinic Health System, our top priority is our patients and we remain committed to meeting the needs of our patients and communities. Plans are in place to ensure a smooth transition of care for all patients of the Waukon Clinic." In response to the development, Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon also issued the following information through the office of hospital administrator Mike Myers: "Dr. Schwartz is no longer employed by the Mayo Health System. While he is no longer employed by Mayo, it is his intention, as well as that of Veterans Memorial Hospital, to have him remain involved with the care of our patients.

Wed
24
Jan

DNR meets with area residents to discuss further local efforts to monitor chronic wasting disease


DNR hosts meeting regarding local CWD surveillance efforts … Nearly 60 area individuals attended the Thursday, January 18 meeting hosted by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to discuss local efforts to monitor chronic wasting disease (CWD). The meeting was directed by Iowa DNR Wildlife Biologist Terry Haindfield, who explained what CWD is, its impact and the more concentrated local efforts to curb the emergence of the disease in both Allamakee and Clayton counties, including a special harvest and collection effort taking place this week in an area that has been expanded even further (see accompanying map at right) since Thursday's meeting due to one newly confirmed case and five other suspected cases in Allamakee County currently undergoing their second confirmation testing since the meeting. Standard photo by Joe Moses.

Area for special CWD effort expanded ... Since its Thursday, January 18 meetings held in Allamakee County and in Clayton County, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has expanded the surveillance zone in Allamakee County for the current special tissue collection effort going on now until this Sunday, January 28. The map above shows that the focused collection area has now been expanded further to the north and west along Highway 9 west of Lansing and further to the south and west toward Monona in Clayton County. The expansion comes after the confirmation of at least one more case of CWD from the recent 2017 deer hunting season (indicated by the brown triangle pictured above in the most eastern tip of Allamakee County), along with five other suspected cases currently undergoing a second confirmation test. Submitted image.

Focused tissue collection zone expanded since Thursday meeting following one new confirmed CWD case and five more suspected

by Joe Moses

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) held an informational meeting open to the public Thursday, January 18 at the Ethel Robinson Meehan Community Center in Harpers Ferry in preparation for the January 20-28 scientific deer collection effort, part of the ongoing monitoring of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in wild Iowa deer. During the public meeting, DNR Wildlife Management Biologist and CWD Coordinator Terry Haindfield conducted a presentation to approximately 60 local residents in attendance highlighting Iowa's CWD-related information and the scientific deer collection effort taking place this week in Allamakee and Clayton Counties in an effort to further monitor and combat the spread of the disease.

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