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Newscast 7.10.2024: South Sioux City voters approve measure to hire more firefighters; Summit Carbon Solutions will hold meetings to explain pipeline plans; Woodbury County added to federal flooding disaster area

Summit Carbon Solutions
Summit Carbon Solutions

South Sioux City voters in a special election Tuesday approved having a currently collected sales tax be redirected in part to hire more firefighters.

The city council in May put forth a proposal to add three more fire department employees, contending that more workers were greatly need for fire protection.

The measure will convert a half-penny sales from going all to public works projects, to being evenly shared with the fire department.

South Sioux City voters approved that tax-shifting in low voter turnout, on a 291 to 25 count.

*In other news, on the heels of a state agency approval, the Summit Carbon Solutions group will hold a series of public meetings to explain plans for their CO2 pipeline.

The meetings will update plans by Summit Carbon Solutions to extend its pipeline by many more miles in Iowa counties, in the aim to serve additional ethanol plants.

The Iowa Utilities Board recently approved plans by Summit to build through the state, so long as regulators in adjacent states approve the pipeline’s route. Controversially, the state board granted the right of eminent domain for the project, so that Summit could build the pipeline on property where landowners have not signed on with the plan.

Those Siouxland meetings will be on September 17 in Emmetsburg and Spencer, September 18 in Melvin and Primghar, September 19 in Orange City, and September 20 in the Lakeside area of Storm Lake.

Summit’s pipeline would cross 29 counties and connect with 30 ethanol plants in Iowa.

Summit has said the project would be the largest of its kind in the US with 2,500 miles of pipe across five states.

Construction cannot start until some final filings are reviewed by the IUB, and pipeline permits are approved in North Dakota and South Dakota.

*Woodbury County became the eighth county in Northwest Iowa impacted by summer flooding to become eligible for federal disaster assistance and relief, following a Presidential Disaster Declaration.

Many Northwest Iowa counties experienced significant damage from severe storms, flooding, straight-line winds, and tornadoes that occurred in late June. Some of the worst flooding in Woodbury County happened in the Riverside area of Sioux City and in Correctionville on the Little Sioux River, and many people had been advocating for Woodbury County to be added.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency Individual Assistance Program is also available to the other seven counties of Buena Vista, Cherokee, Clay, Emmet, Lyon, O’Brien, Plymouth, and Sioux.

*Also, a Flood Relief Resource Fair is being held this week for people who live in the Riverside area of Sioux City.

The event will be held on Wednesday and Thursday at Riverside Lutheran Church, as sponsored by the City of Sioux City and Woodbury County.

Resources available at the fair will be offered by such organizations as the American Red Cross, Community Action Agency, The Salvation Army, Sunnybrook Hope Center, Siouxland Mental Health, and others.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency opened two more Disaster Recovery Centers in Northwest Iowa this week.

A center opened in Estherville on Tuesday, and one in Rock Rapids was added on Wednesday. Last week, FEMA opened two such centers in Spencer and Rock Valley, which are two of the most impacted towns by flooding.

**The City of Sioux City will hold two public open house meetings as officials work to update the master plan for Sioux Gateway Airport. The first meeting will be held the afternoon of July 17 in the airport terminal building, with a second one to come later in the fall.

Some topics to be addressed in the airport master plan include projecting how much demand there is for airport services and ways to meet any increased demand for such aviation services.