Melissa Lambrecht


Green Waste Fee

A change for Commercial Contractors who remove trees and other Green Materials  for Ottumwa Residents. Ottumwa City Council Member Matt Dalbey said that in the future, there will be a tipping fee at the Ottumwa/Wapello County Landfill, for disposal of what Dalbey called “Green Waste”. Dalbey said that the Ottumwa/Wapello County Landfill Commission has initiated these new tipping fees because it is costing the landfill about $70,000.00 Per year to dispose of materials brought to the landfill by commercial tree removal services. The new fee, Dalbey said, will help coverRead More

Woman charged with Hit and Run

A Fairfield woman who was involved in a hit and run accident in Fairfield in October has been charged with Leaving the Scene of an accident resulting in an injury. On October 8th the Jefferson County Law Center received a call that a child on a bicycle had been hit by a female driver in a black 4 door car onFairview street. An investigation was initiated by the Fairfield Police Department. During the investigation, an individual came to the Jefferson County LawCenter and stated she was the driver of the vehicle involved in the accident.  The individual was identified as Nicole Wheeler of Fairfield. DueRead More

Intersection of Penn and Jeff Opening

November 19, 2014  – Ottumwa, Iowa –  The City of Ottumwa will be opening the intersection of Pennsylvania Avenue and Jefferson Street to regular traffic on Thursday, November 20.     There will a temporary four-way stop at the intersection.  Motorists should be aware of the change and watch for the flashing red light. Workers will continue be in the area.    Painted turning lanes and full traffic signals will be installed as scheduling and conditions permit.   Work on Phase 2 and 3 of the $2.4 million project will begin in the spring.

Food for Fines

The Director of the Ottumwa Public Library is reminding the Public that you can exchange canned goods or dry packaged food for overdue book fines at the Ottumwa Public Library, now through November 29th. Sonja Farrell said that Library patrons with overdue fines can erase those fines by donating one canned food item or one packaged  item, in exchange for each dollar of overdue book fines. The food will then be donated to the Food Bank of Southern Iowa, to help the hungry. Farrell reminds folks that no glass containers,Read More

Sheriff’s vehicles to get computers

The Wapello County Sheriff’s Office may soon join the electronic age of the 21st Century, when Sheriff’s vehicles become equipped with computers. Wapello County Sheriff Mark Miller said today that, through the generosity of donations by the Ottumwa Regional Legacy Foundation and Cargill Meat Solutions, as well as a little bit of grant money, it looks like the Wapello County Sheriff’s Office will  be able to fund the installation of computers in its Patrol Vehicles in the very near future. Miller said that both organizations thought that the computers wereRead More

Nightmare on Third Street Has Record Year

The Ottumwa Police Department had a record attendance at the Nightmare on Third Street Haunted House this year.  A total of 3,155 people went through the haunted house raising $19,160.    Proceeds from the haunted house project go directly to the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) and Great (Gang Resistance Education and Training) Programs conducted by the Ottumwa Police Department in our local schools. The Ottumwa Police Department would like to thank the many volunteers who donated their time and efforts to the haunted house.

City Council approves resolution on housing

Plans to construct a senior housing complex in Ottumwa is one step closer to reality following action taken by the Ottumwa City CouncilTuesday night. Under the consent agenda, the council approved a resolution of support for the Miller Valentine Group Senior housing project. That groups intends to apply for tax credits to assist with building up to 50 senior ………age 55 and up housing in the city.  The group intends to purchase City owned vacant lots for the new construction. The city owned lots are in an R-3 zoning district.  The resolution approvedRead More

Police Investigate Two Stabbing Incidents

On Sunday, November 16th, 2014, officers responded to a medical call for service at the Bp service station located at 533 N. Jefferson in Ottumwa.  Upon arrival, officers identified a male victim, Kelwin Dawley, age 22 of Ottumwa, as a victim of an assault.  Dawley had injuries to his head and his hand that were consistent with injuries from a knife or other cutting instrument.  Dawley was transported to Ottumwa Regional Health Center where he was treated and released for his injuries.  Dawley claimed to have been assaulted by aRead More

Iowa National Guard unit notified for possible mobilization-Operation United Assistance

By order of the Secretary of Defense, the 294th Area Support Medical Company, Iowa Army National Guard based in Washington, Iowa has been notified of a pending mobilization in support of Operation United Assistance. The mobilization will affect approximately 80 Soldiers from the unit. Operation United Assistance, the U.S. response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, is led by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The Department of Defense and other U.S. government agencies are providing certain unique, supporting capabilities as needed to the operation. Army National Guard personnel,Read More

River Draw Down

November 14, 2014  – Ottumwa, Iowa –  Ottumwa Water and Hydro is coordinating a drawdown in the Des Moines River with the Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Red Rock.  The river drawdown is necessary to repair the trash gate at the Hydro Electric plant by the dam.  On Monday, November 17th, the outflow at Lake Red Rock will be reduced to 300 cubic feet per second (cfs).   Also on Monday, Ottumwa Water & Hydro will begin raising the gates on the dam releasing water to bring down the river level aboveRead More

Death of two Fairfield residents under investigation

The deaths of two Fairfield residents is under investigation by the Fairfield Police Department. Sunday morning authorities were summoned to the Super 8 Motel after two people were found unconscious and later pronounced dead. The individuals identified as 20 year old Alexandra Higdon of Libertyville, and 24 year old Casey Griffin of Fairfield. Their bodies have been set to the State Medical Examiners office for autopsies. Officials say the case is still under investigation. Fairfield Police is asking anyone who may have had contact with either individual over the weekendRead More

Death of infant under investigation

The death of a southeast Iowa infant is being called suspicious. Des Moines county officials say 22 day old Carter J. Payne died over the past weekend at a rural home. The Des Moines County Sheriff’s Department is saying very little about the death.  The death is being investigated by several law enforcement agencies. An autopsy is being conducted by the State Medical Examiners office with results not expected for several months.

City Prepares For Snowy Driving Conditions

November 13, 2014  – Ottumwa, Iowa – With the first measurable snow in the forecast, Ottumwa residents are being reminded about how City snow removal affects traffic and parking in the community.   The amount of snowfall, how fast it comes and the time of day all factor into snow removal.   Drivers motorists should be aware that snow plow drivers cannot see directly behind their trucks and often need to stop or back up.   Keep a safe distance away from working snowplows. For light snows, the main focus is on clearing mainRead More

Ottumwa woman pleads guilty to assault charges

A 29 year old Ottumwa woman charged with Willful Injury following an incident last year has entered a plea of guilty. On November 6th of last year Ashley Nicole Weir was arrested after she reportedly stabbed her boyfriend. The incident occurred at an apartment building in downtown Ottumwa. When officers arrived on the scene, they found Kaz Long, an assistant Wapello County Defender and Weir in the apartment. Weir admitted to stabbing Long. Earlier this week, Weir entered a guilty plea to Willful Injury.

What Cheer man charged with assault

A 27 year old What Cheer man is facing charges following an altercation at the Van Buren County jail in Keosauqua. The sheriff’s department says Ivan Lee Short Jr. was charged with assault on a peace officer on November 1st following an incident with another inmate. Deputies say Short became involved in an assault with another inmate. Deputies entered the cell to separate the two. At that point Short refused to follow orders to leave the cell and began assaulting the other inmate. Deputies were forced to put Short downRead More

Shop Centerville – November 8, 2014

SIEDA Coat Drive – Check It Out

Wapello County Trails Finalist for Grant

Wapello County Trails Council Highway 34 Tunnel Project in Ottumwa has been named one of 10 finalists competing for a Working Together Making It Better grant sponsored by Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company. Grinnell Mutual invites the public to vote for its favorite community project finalist on Facebook. With help from its Facebook fans, Grinnell Mutual will distribute a total of $3,500 between three of the non-profit organizations. Wapello County Trails Council Highway 34 Tunnel Project requests funds to construct a lighted underpass beneath Highway 34 in Ottumwa to provide a safe connection between two setsRead More

Ottumwa man arrested on drug charges

A 43 year old Ottumwa man is being held in the Wapello County jail following his arrest last Thursday. The Wapello County Sheriff’s Department says Thursday evening, deputies responded to 6010 Cliffland Road and as the result of an investigation, Daniel Payne Jr. was arrested on two arrest warrants for Failure to Appear and Interference with official acts and Criminal trepass. Payne was also charged with Delivery of Marijuana , Drug Tax Stamp violation and two counts of Possession of a Firearm by a felon. These charges were filed followingRead More

2014 American Legion Veteran’s Day Program

Crash injures one

One person was injured following a two vehicle crash Sunday at the intersection of highway 34 and 267th Street. The Iowa State Patrol says a van driven by 24 year old Seth A. Alcorn of Monmouth, Illinois was westbound in the outside lane of highway 34, while a car driven by 30 year old Rachael Fowler of Burlington was southbound on 267th Street when the Alcorn vehicle failed to yield the right of way from a stop sign at the intersection and pulled out in front of the Fowler vehicle.Read More

School of Sustainable Agriculture to be unveiled

CENTERVILLE — The new Morgan E. Cline School of Sustainable Agriculture on the Indian Hills Community College Centerville campus is about to be unveiled to the public. A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the facility is slated for Thursday, Nov. 13, at 5:00 p.m. The centerpiece of the complex, made possible by a $500,000 gift from philanthropist Morgan Cline, is a sustainable greenhouse which promises to be a model for food production. The ribbon-cutting will actually be held inside the greenhouse which is located near the Barn on the Centerville campus. Brydon Kaster, who is the director ofRead More

What Cheer Man Sentenced for Taking and Possessing a Bald Eagle

DES MOINES, IA B On November 6, 2014, Jason John Thomas, age 36 of What Cheer, Iowa, was sentenced by District Court Judge John A. Jarvey to 60 days imprisonment for taking and possessing a bald eagle, announced United States Attorney Nicholas A. Klinefeldt. Thomas was ordered to serve one year of supervised release following the imprisonment, pay a $2,000 fine, and pay $25 toward the Crime Victim Fund. Special conditions of the supervised release include that Thomas shall perform 80 hours of community service, and shall not engage in any form of hunting. On MarchRead More

Council approves first reading of ordinance on grass height

An ordinance amending the city’s code on parking in residential yards and keeping grass mowed at a certain heights passed it’s first hurdle Tuesday night. Meeting in regular session Tuesday evening, the council approved the first reading of the amended ordinance.  Upon recommendation of the Make Ottumwa Shine committee city residents would received a citation if the height of grass is higher than 10 to 12 inches. The ordinance also sets guidelines for parking vehicle in residential front yards. Parking of vehicle will only be permitted on surfaces approved by the city. In approvingRead More

ATV vs. Train claims the life of a Blakesburg man

A 51 year old Blakesburg man was killed Wednesday morning shortly after 10:00 a.m.  on 690th Avenue at the Brompton railroad crossing. The Iowa State Patrol says a 4 wheeler operated by Greg L. McCoy was southbound on 690th Avenue and struck a westbound Canadian Pacific train.  McCoy was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The accident remains under investigation.