KXEL Midday News for Thu. Oct. 22, 2020

KXEL Midday News for Thu. Oct. 22, 2020

INCREASING NUMBERS OF COVID-19 CASES AND DEATHS ARE SLOWLY BUT STEADILY PUTTING RENEWED PRESSURE ON IOWA HOSPITALS. CONDITIONS ARE DIFFERENT THAN THEY WERE IN THE SPRING AND SUMMER. DR. TONY MYERS IS VICE PRESIDENT OF MEDICAL AFFAIRS AT MERCY CEDAR RAPIDS, AND HE SHARED THIS OBSERVATION WITH OUR COVERAGE PARTNERS AT TV-9. AS OF WEDNESDAY, MYERS SAID MERCY WAS TREATING 19 ACTIVE COVID CASES. THAT’S APPROXIMATELY 80 PERCENT OF THE PEAK CASE COUNT MERCY CEDAR RAPIDS SAW EARLIER THIS YEAR.

THE IOWA SUPREME COURT ABSENTEE BALLOTS CAN’T BE MAILED TO THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WHO OMITTED INFORMATION ON THEIR APPLICATIONS. WEDNESDAY’S WAS 4-3. IT MEANS VOTERS WITH INCOMPLETE FORMS MUST FIND A WAY TO COMPLETE THOSE ABSENTEE BALLOT APPLICATIONS BEFORE SATURDAY’S DEADLINE IN ORDER TO QUALIFY. AUDITORS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO USE THE STATE’S VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM TO FILL IN ANY BLANKS ON SUBMITTED APPLICATIONS. DISSENTING IOWA JUSTICES CONTEND THAT THE RULING WILL “LIKELY CAUSE THOUSANDS OF VOTERS TO NOT RECEIVE THEIR BALLOT IN TIME.”

A NEW STUDY SHOWS THAT OLDER WORKERS ARE FACING HIGHER UNEMPLOYMENT THAN MID-CAREER WORKERS DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC. THE DETAILS RELEASED THIS WEEK FOUND THAT WORKERS 55 AND OLDER LOST JOBS SOONER, WERE REHIRED SLOWER AND CONTINUE TO FACE HIGHER JOB LOSSES THAN THEIR COUNTERPARTS AGES 35 TO 54. THE UNEMPLOYMENT RATE WAS FAR WORSE FOR OLDER WORKERS WHO ARE FEMALE OR BLACK OR WHO LACK COLLEGE DEGREES.

BOTH CANDIDATES IN THE IOWA HOUSE DISTRICT 60 RACE ARE THINKING ABOUT CHILD CARE. REPUBLICAN CHALLENGER RYAN HOWARD BROUGHT IT UP DURING A KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL INTERVIEW ON WEDNESDAY. DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT DAVE WILLIAMS SHARED HIS VIEW ON ATTEMPTS TO ADDRESS IOWA’S CHILD CARE CLIFF WHEN WE TALKED TO HIM THIS MORNING. IF YOU MISSED THIS MORNING’S FULL INTERVIEW WITH WILLIAMS, YOU CAN FIND THAT AUDIO, AND WEDNESDAY’S INTERVIEW WITH RYAN HOWARD, AT KXEL.COM.

THE SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE WILL WAIT TO VOTE ON SUBPOENAS WHICH WOULD BRING TWITTER CEO JACK DORSEY AND FACEBOOK CHIEF MARK ZUCKERBERG TO CAPITOL HILL. IOWA SENATOR JONI ERNST IS ON THE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE. THE SENATE HAS BEEN EXAMINING SOCIAL MEDIA COMPANY POLICIES RELATED TO POLITICAL CONTENT. THAT CLIP CAME FROM A RECENT ERNST APPEARANCE ON FOX AND FRIENDS.

TWO SUSPECTS HAVE BEEN ARRESTED ON DRUG CHARGES BY BUCHANAN COUNTY AUTHORITIES. DARYL COLE AND AMBER BRADLEY WERE TAKEN INTO CUSTODY AFTER THE ALLEGED DISCOVERY OF METH AT A HOME IN STANLEY EARLIER THIS YEAR. FIRE ARMS AND CHILD ENDANGERMENT COUNTS ARE ALSO PART OF THE CASE AGAINST COLE AND BRADLEY.

THE SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE RETURNS ATTENTION TO THE SUPREME COURT NOMINATION OF JUDGE AMY CONEY BARRETT TODAY. DURING A RECENT APPEARANCE ON FOX AND FRIENDS, IOWA SENATOR AND JUDICIARY COMMITTEE MEMBER JONI ERNST SPOKE ABOUT THAT. THE BARRETT NOMINATION IS NOT ANTICIPATED TO ENCOUNTER ANYTHING MORE THAN TEMPORARY OBSTACLES. FINAL APPROVAL OF HER APPOINTMENT IS EXPECTED TO RETURN THE HIGH COURT TO A FULL COMPLIMENT OF NINE MEMBERS NEXT WEEK.

SOME RESIDENTS IN MARION THINK IT IS TIME FOR A NEW POOL. THAT WAS THE TOPIC OF A PUBLIC MEETING ON WEDNESDAY NIGHT. SWIMMING POOL USE HAS BEEN SLIPPING IN RECENT YEARS, A TREND WHICH IS BELIEVED TO BE TIED TO THE LIMITED AMENITIES AND SIZE OF THE CURRENT POOL, COMPARED WITH OTHERS WITHIN EASY DRIVING DISTANCE. A CITY POOL SURVEY FOR MARION RESIDENTS IS BEING CONDUCTED ONLINE THROUGH THE END OF NEXT WEEK. MARION’S CURRENT FACILITY OPENED 33 YEARS AGO. A NEW ONE WOULD TAKE MOST OF A DECADE TO PLAN AND BUILD.

THE SALVATION ARMY OF WATERLOO/CEDAR FALLS IS COLLECTING INFORMATION ABOUT CEDAR VALLEY FAMILIES IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE DURING THE COMING HOLIDAYS. REGISTRATION FOR CHRISTMAS ASSISTANCE IS OPEN THROUGH NOVEMBER 14TH. THE SALVATION ARMY SAYS IT EXPECTS TO HELP AROUND 500 BLACK HAWK COUNTY FAMILIES. THE ORGANIZATION ALSO ESTIMATES THAT APPROXIMATELY 70 PERCENT OF ASSISTANCE REQUESTS IN RECENT MONTH HAVE COME FROM PEOPLE ASKING FOR HELP FOR THE FIRST TIME, MANY DUE TO COVID-19.