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NEWS 4.19.22


Following a federal ruling passed down this week, passengers on Sioux City buses and people who fly from the Sioux Gateway Airport will no longer have to wear masks. That is according to a news release issued by the city of Sioux City today.

A federal judge in Florida struck down a national mask mandate on airplanes and mass transit. The decision freed airlines, airports and mass transit systems to make their own decisions but does go against a requirement by the CDC.

A Biden administration official said agencies are reviewing the decision and potential next steps.

Former President Trump will be in Nebraska for a rally on Friday, April 29th at the I-80 Speedway located between Omaha and Lincoln. Candidate for governor Charles Herbster is scheduled to be a guest speaker at the event. Several women have accused Herbster of inappropriate behavior.

Former Vice President Mike Pence plans to visit western Iowa on Saturday. Pence will be the guest of U.S. Representative Randy Feenstra for a 4th district delegate convention in Carroll.

Feenstra won his first term in 2020 against Democrat J.D. Scholten. He will face Democrat Ryan Melton from Nevada and Bryan Jack Holder, a libertarian of Council Bluffs.

Melton, an Iowa State University graduate, works at Nationwide in Des Moines. Holder ran as a Libertarian candidate in 2020 in Iowa's 3rd congressional district, finishing with 3.4% of the vote in a race in which Democratic Rep. Cindy Axne narrowly defeated Republican David Young.

Former U.S. Rep. Brad Ashford, a Democrat who served one term representing Nebraska's Omaha-centered district, has died. He was 72. Ashford's family says he died Tuesday, two months after he revealed he was undergoing treatment for brain cancer.

Ashford was a state senator from Omaha when he unseated longtime Republican incumbent Lee Terry to represent Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District. Ashford lost the seat two years later to GOP Rep. Don Bacon.

Ashford, an attorney and lifelong Omaha resident, sought the seat again in 2018, but lost the primary to Kara Eastman. In 2020, he shook up the congressional race by endorsing Bacon over Eastman.

Funeral service will be help later this week for Siouxland philanthropist and businessman Leonard Gill

Visitation with family present will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at St. Patrick's Catholic Church, Jackson. Arrangements are under the direction of Mohr & Becker-Hunt Funeral Home in South Sioux City.

The Sioux City Journal reports the 87-year-old and owner Gill Hauling and Landfill near Jackson, Nebraska died on Thursday. His company does garbage and recycling services for many communities in the tri-state region.

South Sioux City administrator Lance Hedquist says Gill did everything with his heart, not just his pocketbook.

A funeral is planned for Friday at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in South Sioux City at 11 a.m. and visitation from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday.

The new owners of an Iowa amusement park say a water ride where a boy died last year will not reopen this summer. Bill Lentz, general manager of Adventureland in Altoona, said the park officials are still discussing whether the Raging River ride will ever reopen. Eleven-year-old Michael Jaramillo died and his brother and father were injured after their raft capsized, trapping them in the water. Plentz said the new park owner, Palace Entertainment, has hired the ride’s original maker, Intamin Amusement Rides, to exam what steps would be needed to make the ride safe. That review could take several months.

Greyhound racing in Iowa is starting its final lap. The Iowa Greyhound Park in Dubuque opened for the final time in a season that Racing and Gaming Commission tells Radio Iowa will last one month.

The Iowa Legislature approved a plan about seven years ago to phase out greyhound racing in the state. The final race at the Iowa Greyhound Park in Dubuque is on May 15th. The Racing and Gaming Commission website shows the first dog races began at the Dubuque Greyhound Park, which opened in June of 1985. West Virginia will be the only state left with dog racing.

Sodrac Park in North Sioux City closed in 1995 after 38 years. Sioux City Journal archives show in the mid 80s, almost 250,000 people wagered about 23 million dollars. That is worth about $60 million today. Gambling revenue fell by half after Bluffs Run opened, that track closed in 2015.