Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds

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Iowa union leaders heard from more than a dozen Democratic presidential candidates today (Wednesday). All are seeking support from the labor movement.

In the 2016 election, union workers voted for the Democratic presidential candidate by a smaller margin than in elections in the past three decades.

Here’s Montana Governor Steve Bullock, who presents himself as a candidate who can win over Trump voters.

CNN News

More debate watch parties take place tonight in Woodbury County.    

The first leg of the second round of Democratic presidential debates is over, and now it's on to Night 2.

Center stage features former Vice President Joe Biden who promises to not be as "polite" as he was in the last debate.

Night 1 drew a bold line between moderates and progressives onstage. 

Associated Press

Woodbury County is making strides towards having a new jail.  

Yesterday, Woodbury County supervisors approved an architecture contract with a firm that will put together a design for the $49.5-million-dollar jail. 

The county has cited infrastructure and overcrowding issues as reasons for a new building.

The county is joining several others around the state that have recently worked to update and expand their facilities.

Eight counties have completed new jails or major renovations since 2014.

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A Sioux City plastic surgeon facing action by the Iowa Medical Board says he expects to be vindicated.

The board alleges Dr. Adam Smith failed to provide appropriate care to 17 patients from December 2014 to September of 2017. 

“I have done my best for my whole time in Siouxland here to provide the best care I can for patients.”

A hearing on the allegations is scheduled for October.

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The Iowa Supreme Court will hear an appeal of the judicial nomination law.   The lawsuit challenges a new state law that changed the way some judges are selected in Iowa.

A state court judge last month dismissed the lawsuit filed by a group of lawyers and Democratic lawmakers against Gov. Kim Reynolds, saying they didn't have legal standing to challenge the law.

The new law gave the governor an additional appointment to the 17-member state judicial nominating commission, meaning the governor will appoint the majority of members.

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The Iowa Department of Human Services will pay an additional $386 million to two insurance companies that will provide Medicaid services for the 2020 fiscal year. DHS says the rates include changes made by the Iowa Legislature, which account for about 2 percent of the increase. Last year the agency approved a $344 million increase over the previous year.

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The state of Iowa has agreed to pay an additional 386-million in state and federal dollars to the two private Medicaid providers.  The state’s portion paid to the insurance companies is a smaller percentage increase than last year, but it’s a bigger dollar increase. 

Governor Kim Reynolds says the state has started to stabilize the Medicaid program.

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The U.S. House is expected to take up legislation this week aimed at addressing so-called “forever chemicals” found in household goods and firefighting foams. Some were found at a military base in Sioux City.. Exposure to the substances known as PFAS is linked to certain cancers, immunodeficiencies, and birth complications. Communities are increasingly finding hotspots near industrial sites and military bases,

The House is considering adding PFAS to the federal superfund law. Scott Faber [FAY-burr] with the Environmental Working Group says that step is vital.

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Shelters and temporary housing are being provided to those affected by flash flooding in south-central Nebraska, according to the SC Journal.

The University of Nebraska at Kearney announced Tuesday it is offering dorm space as temporary housing for people affected in Kearney and surrounding communities. The university is also working with nearby hotels to relocate and house hundreds of travelers who were evacuated.

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Sioux City School District Superintendent Dr. Paul Gausman could receive a nearly 2 percent raise tonight, boosting his annual pay to more than $243 thousand dollars.  Last year, Gausman asked to board to freeze his salary.

At its meeting tonight, the school board will vote on a new three-year contract for Gausman.  He has been Sioux City school superintendent since 2008.

Gausman’s contract is in line with the previously approved raise for other administrators and the two percent raise union leaders negotiated for teachers. 

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