South Dakota

This week on The Exchange, Western Iowa Tech Community College is accused of human trafficking in connection with a group of exchange students from South America.  WIT President Terry Murrell strongly refutes those allegations and pledges to help students finish their programs of study.

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The statewide winter storm today has been upgraded to a blizzard warning in northwest Iowa, while more snow accumulation has been forecast across the state.

Blizzard warning criteria from the NWS are wind gusts of 35 mph or greater and one-quarter of mile visibility or less that lasts up to three hours.  

  

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The Iowa chapter of March For Our Lives is looking to build support in the legislature for new gun laws.

Their proposals include mandatory reporting for lost and stolen firearms, universal background checks and a seven-day waiting period before completing a gun purchase.

Legislative director Nick Pryor says, in other states, longer waiting periods have been shown to reduce gun violence.

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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers doesn't expect to eliminate from its reservoir system all the leftover water from last year's near-record runoff that led to massive flooding along the Missouri River. Officials are raising the current releases in expectation of high spring runoff again this year. The Corps told the Omaha World-Herald the system needs to make as much space as possible in light of forecasts for warmer than normal weather and higher than normal runoff. 

This week on The Exchange, as the new looms, we consider our goals and life choices and sometimes ask ourselves if we have sold out on our values.  We talk with the author of a new book called "The Ethical Sellout," about the many ways compromise can help us make decisions that accord with our values and the practical needs of our lives.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is getting support this afternoon in Siouxland as former Secretary of State and Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry will visit his campaign office in Sioux City this afternoon.  Listen for coverage during “All Things Considered”.

Iowa’s senior U.S. senator says he expects the U.S., Mexico, Canada trade agreement to get “unanimous support” today in a Senate Finance Committee hearing. Republican Chuck Grassley, who chairs the committee, also expects passage in the full Senate. 

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A vote on a referendum for a new county jail should be delayed, that’s according to Woodbury County Supervisor Jeremy Taylor. Taylor wants a potential vote on a $49 million new county jail to be held in September rather than March.  However, the other four supervisors are not in agreement.

Taylor says today that the public needs more time to understand and think about the details about the project. If passed, the proposal would raise property taxes for county residents for 20 years. 

Associated Press

'Dark money' ties raise questions for GOP Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa

Documents obtained by The Associated Press reveal an outside group founded by top political aides to Sen. Joni Ernst is working closely with the Iowa Republican to raise money and boost her reelection prospects.

Some legal experts say the degree of overlap between her campaign and the nonprofit Iowa Values could violate the law.

Emails show Ernst fundraiser Claire Holloway Avella asked a donor for $50,000 for the group following an introduction by the senator.  

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The three survivors of a South Dakota plane crash that killed nine members of an extended family from Idaho are in stable condition today.

Brothers Jim and Kirk Hansen, who founded the nutritional and wellness products company Kyani, were killed. The crash also killed their father, Kirk Hansen's children, his sons-in-law, and Jim Hansen's son and grandson.

Kirk's son Josh and Jim's son Matt and son-in-law Thomas Long survived.

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The three survivors of a South Dakota plane crash that killed nine members of an extended family from Idaho were in stable condition today, a family representative said.

The survivors were being treated at Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls. The family was returning from an annual pheasant-hunting trip when the plane crashed Saturday in a cornfield near Chamberlain shortly after takeoff during a snowstorm.

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