Monday, March 10, 2014



Estimated read time: 5-6 minutes

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EPA: Former Iowa dairy owner will pay $75,000

ROCK VALLEY, Iowa (AP) — The former owner of a dairy in northwest Iowa will pay $75,000 to settle alleged water quality violations.

The Environmental Protection Agency said in a news release Monday that the civil penalty is in connection to Double V Dairy, near Rock Valley. The agreement settles any alleged violations of the Clean Water Act.

The agency says Double V Dairy discharged manure into Rogg Creek and its tributaries between 2010 and 2013. The dairy was sold in November 2013 and now has new owners.

The EPA conducted a series of inspections at the dairy between March and May of 2013. Officials say the manure discharges originated from stockpiles of used bedding sands that were outside in an uncontrolled area..

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Iowa Supreme Court hears service dog training case DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court is considering whether a former Drake University law student who trains service dogs for veterans may sue the university, which she says barred her from taking a dog to classes.

Nicole Shumate, a 2009 Drake Law School graduate, filed a lawsuit in August 2011 claiming the university denied her access to classes and other activities with a service dog in training.

A district court judge dismissed the case in 2012 but the Iowa Court of Appeals in November sided with Shumate, saying a person training a service dog is protected in the same way as someone with a disability who uses a service dog.

Drake's attorney, Andrew Bracken, says Iowa's law does not authorize dog trainers to sue for damages.

The Supreme Court heard arguments Monday.

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Iowa lawmakers OK anti-bullying plan for schools DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa lawmakers are continuing their efforts to fund an anti-bullying measure that would create an office to coordinate efforts and establish a grant program for schools across the state.

A three-member Senate appropriations subcommittee voted 2-1 on Monday in favor of the legislation, which goes to the full Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday.

The bill calls for a $1 million appropriation to establish an office within the Department of Education, charged with coordinating and implementing bullying prevention and response efforts. The bill also would develop a grant program to help schools carry out new anti-bullying policies.

Adam Gregg, legislative liaison for Gov. Terry Branstad, says such a large appropriation is unnecessary. Sen. Robert Hogg, a Democrat from Cedar Rapids, says he's sure an agreement on funding can be reached.

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Cornell president named new head of Smithsonian WASHINGTON (AP) — The Smithsonian Board of Regents on Monday named Cornell University President Dr. David Skorton to lead the world's largest museum and research complex in the nation's capital.

Skorton, who is a cardiologist, will replace Secretary Wayne Clough, who plans to retire at the end of the year. Skorton is set to start in July 2015 and board members are looking at options for filling the post in the interim.

The 64-year-old Skorton will be the first physician to lead the organization and its 13th secretary since 1846. For much of its history, the Smithsonian has been led by scientists. It is made up of 19 museums based primarily on the National Mall, the National Zoo and nine research facilities around the world.

"Becoming a part of the Smithsonian is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to lead an institution that is at the heart of the country's cultural, artistic, historical and scientific life," Skorton said in a statement. "I am eager to work with the leaders of Washington's art, science and cultural centers to emphasize the critical importance of these disciplines."

Skorton, whose research focus is congenital heart disease, cardiac imaging and image processing, has led Cornell since 2006. Skorton previously served as president of the University of Iowa for three years, where he was a faculty member for 26 years.

At the Smithsonian, Skorton will be paid a salary of $795,000 — far more than the current secretary. The board set the salary based on comparisons with public universities, nonprofits, museums and cultural organizations, said Smithsonian spokeswoman Linda St. Thomas. Clough's current salary is $542,000.

The Smithsonian includes several of the world's most popular museums that draw millions of visitors each year, including the National Air and Space Museum, the National Museum of Natural History and the National Museum of American History. All offer free admission. The complex also is building a new National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is slated to open in late 2015 or early 2016.

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Iowa Supreme Court hears HIV conviction appeal DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court heard arguments Monday on whether it should uphold the conviction of a man with HIV who was sentenced to 25 years in prison for not telling a partner he carried the virus when they had sex.

The court agreed in January to hear Nick Rhoades' case after the Iowa Court of Appeals upheld his conviction in October. That court concluded Rhoades had violated the state's HIV transmission law because he didn't disclose that he was infected, even though his partner did not acquire the virus and their 2008 encounter posed a low risk of transmission.

Rhoades' attorney Christopher Clark, a Chicago attorney for the gay rights advocacy group Lambda Legal, said his client's use of a condom shows Rhoades did not intend to expose his partner to a bodily fluid that could have transmitted HIV.

In addition, he argued that Rhoades' treatment for HIV left him with very a very low level of the virus in his blood, which means transmission was nearly impossible.

"Under the facts of this case there was absolutely no risk that HIV would be transmitted and a prosecution under Iowa's HIV transmission law was completely inappropriate, and we hope that the Supreme Court will agree," he said in an interview after the court session.

Iowa passed a law in 1998 making it a felony for someone with HIV to engage in intimate contact with another person without disclosing it. That is defined as the intentional exposure of the body of one person to a bodily fluid of another person in a manner that could result in the transmission of HIV. The law does not specify that the other party must become infected for there to be a crime.

Clark argued that Rhoades, who lived in Plainfield when he was charged and now lives near Des Moines, did not intentionally expose the other man to bodily fluids in a way that could have transmitted HIV because he practiced safe sex by using a condom.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Associated Press

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