Iowa State University Extension Service

UNITED STATES DROUGHT MONITOR

A heat wave is impacting Siouxland.  A heat advisory kicked off at noon and runs through tomorrow night for a large part of the region, including northwest Iowa and southeast South Dakota and Dixon and Dakota counties in northeast Nebraska.  The heat index will reach into the triple digits.

The National Weather Service says drink plenty of fluids, stay in air-conditioning if possible, stay out of the sun and take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. 

State agricultural experts say dry conditions are impacting crops in western Iowa. 

Coming up on The Exchange . . .

We hear the latest on COVID-19 in Siouxland, including concerns over the spread of the coronavirus at meatpacking plants.  Tyson Fresh Foods and Seaboard Triumph plants have both had hundreds of workers test positive for COVID-19.  

Sioux City State Senator Jackie Smith asks for an independent task force to oversee testing and mitigation efforts at Tyson foods in Dakota City.

Latinx rights leader Joe Enriguez Henry is calling for a meat boycott in May to encourage Tyson and other meatpackers to do more to protect workers.

This week on The Exchange:

Siouxland mayors, including Sioux City Mayor Bob Scott, demand more transparency about the source of the recent surge in coronavirus cases in the tri-state area.

Governor Kim Reynolds looks forward to opening up 77 Iowa counties this Friday, after many weeks of lockdown because of COVID-19.

Iowa's Home Rule Constitutional Amendment could affect local rules about shutdowns during the pandemic, but, so far, the governor has the last word.

State of Nebraska

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has approved a new $9.3 billion, two-year state budget.

The budget calls for a $51 million annual boost to the state's property tax credit fund, for a total of $275 million a year.

That’s nearly double the amount distributed to taxpayers in 2015.

With the extra funding, the owner of a $150,000 home will get a $106 discount on their property tax bill.

State spending under the new budget will increase by an average of 2.9 percent per year, which is less than average.

Welcome to The Exchange on Siouxland Public Media I’m Mary Hartnett.

Since the election of President Donald Trump in 2016, women have been more politically vocal and politically active.  In fact, an Iowa State University center for Women and Politics says more Iowa women are running for office and winning.  Diane Bystrom is the director of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics. Bystrom says the women have felt the need to get involved after the loss of the first female presidential nominee. 

Diane