KXEL Midday News for Wed. Feb. 17, 2021

KXEL Midday News for Wed. Feb. 17, 2021

THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC IS MORE THAN POSITIVITY RATES AND VACCINE DISTRIBUTION. ACCORDING TO WATERLOO MAYOR QUENTIN HART, IT’S EVEN MORE THAN GETTING BACK TO WHAT WE USED TO CONSIDER NORMAL, WHICH HART SAYS WILL NEVER HAPPEN FOR MANY PEOPLE [AUDIO :19]. HART WAS A RECENT GUEST DURING KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL. EARLIER THIS MONTH, WATERLOO’S CITY COUNCIL GAVE HIM THE AUTHORITY TO MANAGE THE TIMELINE FOR THE COMMUNITY’S CONTINUING MASK MANDATE. IN A STATEMENT LAST WEEK, HART NOTED CONCERNS ABOUT NEW STRAINS OF COVID-19 WHICH HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED IN IOWA.

THE WATER WAS OFF IN NEW HARTFORD ON TUESDAY AS A RESULT OF PROLONGED SUB-ZERO TEMPERATURES. COMMUNITY LEADERS SAID THAT A WATER MAIN DAMAGED BY THE COLD LED TO A COMPLETE SHUTDOWN OF NEW HARTFORD’S WATER SUPPLY. THAT FORCED SCHOOLS TO CLOSE TUESDAY, BUT THE DIKE-NEW HARTFORD DISTRICT IS BACK IN SESSION TODAY. A BOIL ORDER REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR NEW HARTFORD WATER CUSTOMERS THROUGH TOMORROW.

THE ALTERED UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN IOWA FOOTBALL SEASON HAS YET TO BEGIN, BUT THE SCHEDULE FOR NEXT FALL HAS NOW BEEN RELEASED. THE 2021 FALL SLATE OPENS IN AMES AGAINST IOWA STATE ON SEPTEMBER 4TH. THE PANTHERS WILL ALSO TRAVEL TO SACRAMENTO STATE, THEN HOST ST. THOMAS OF MINNESOTA ON SEPTEMBER 18TH AS THAT SCHOOL TRANSITIONS TO DIVISION I. MISSOURI VALLEY FOOTBALL CONFERENCE GAMES BEGIN IN OCTOBER. MEANWHILE THIS ACADEMIC YEAR’S ALTERED FOOTBALL SEASON STARTS FRIDAY AGAINST SOUTH DAKOTA STATE.

LOCAL HEALTH DEPARTMENTS ARE SIZING UP A VACCINE SCHEDULING SYSTEM WHICH THE STATE OF IOWA IS PLANNING TO USE. THE PLATFORM WAS CREATED BY MICROSOFT; IOWA HAS CONTRACTED WITH THE TECH COMPANY TO CENTRALIZE ITS INOCULATION RECORD-KEEPING. MANY COUNTIES HAVE ALREADY WORKED OUT THEIR OWN PLANS. OUR COVERAGE PARTNERS AT TV-9 SPOKE WITH REPRESENTATIVES OF SEVERAL COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENTS WHO SAID THEY WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT THE STATE LEVEL SYSTEM BEFORE CONSIDERING ANY TRANSITION. IT IS NOT YET CLEAR WHETHER HEALTH LEADERS IN DES MOINES WILL COMPEL LOCAL OFFICIALS TO USE THE MICROSOFT PORTAL.

THE POWER WAS OUT IN RURAL PARTS OF GRUNDY AND BLACK HAWK COUNTY FOR A TIME ON TUESDAY. THE TEMPORARY BLACK OUTS IN SOME PARTS OF THE GRUNDY COUNTY RURAL ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE’S TERRITORY WERE ATTRIBUTED TO THE CONTINUED STRAIN ON THE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM CAUSED BY THE EXTREME COLD. GRUNDY COUNTY REC SAID THE LIGHTS AND OTHER ELECTRIC DEVICES – INCLUDING HEAT IN SOME HOMES AND BUSINESSES – WERE OFF FOR ABOUT 45 MINUTES TUESDAY AS SUPPLIES FROM CON BELT POWER COOPERATIVE WERE STRAINED. RYAN CORNELIUS OF HUMBOLDT-BASED CORN BELT PROVIDED THESE RECOMMENDATIONS. BY LATE TUESDAY, THE GRUNDY COUNTY REC REPORTED ON ITS WEBSITE THAT POWER DEMAND HAD RETURNED TO NORMAL LEVELS.

THE UNI PANTHER MEN’S BASKETBALL TEAM HOSTS DRAKE TONIGHT. ONE WEEK AGO, THE BULLDOGS WON THE FIRST MEETING OF THE YEAR BY 21 POINTS. KXEL’S PREGAME COVERAGE STARTS AT 6:30. ALSO TONIGHT, THE IOWA STATE WOMEN TRAVEL TO KANSAS.

A VIOLENT DOMESTIC ASSAULT WILL SEND A TAMA MAN TO FEDERAL PRISON FOR MORE THAN TWO YEARS. THE INCIDENT HAPPENED IN MAY OF LAST YEAR. PROSECUTORS SAY MARSHALL KAPAYOU REPEATEDLY STRUCK HIS GIRLFRIEND UNTIL THE WOMAN PASSED OUT AS THE TWO WERE TOGETHER IN A VEHICLE. THE VICTIM WAS HOSPITALIZED FOR THREE DAYS. A 27-MONTH SENTENCE WAS ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY AFTER KAPAYOU ENTERED A PLEA OF GUILTY TO THE CHARGES AGAINST HIM IN SEPTEMBER. THE ASSAULT HAPPENED IN AN AREA UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE MESKWAKI NATION, LEADING TO THE CASE BEING HEARD IN FEDERAL COURT.

WATERLOO MAYOR QUENTIN HART SAYS THE COMMUNITY IS CREATING A BROAD PLAN FOR MODERNIZATION AND IMPROVEMENTS. HART WAS FIRST ELECTED MAYOR OF WATERLOO IN 2015. A VARIETY OF DEVELOPMENT AND RE-DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS HAVE PROGRESSED DURING HIS TWO TERMS IN OFFICE. HEAR MORE ABOUT THE CITY’S 2030 PLAN AND HART’S COMPLETE RECENT APPEARANCE FROM KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL AT KXEL.COM. DURING NEXT HOUR’S LOCAL NEWSCAST, WATERLOO’S MAYOR TALKS ABOUT THE PRACTICAL IMPACTS OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC.

BLACK HAWK COUNTY SUPERVISORS ARE LOOKING AT THE PRODUCTION QUALITY OF THEIR VIRTUAL MEETINGS. THE PUBLIC HAS ACCESS TO THE SESSION EITHER LIVE OR ON DEMAND. HOWEVER, MANY PEOPLE HAVE NOTED DIFFICULTY DECIPHERING THE DISCUSSION, DUE TO MICROPHONE ISSUES. CONNECTION SPEEDS HAVE ALSO BEEN TROUBLESOME AT TIMES. THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS IS WEIGHING WHAT HARDWARE OR SOFTWARE ALTERATIONS COULD IMPROVE THE SITUATION.