Officers shoot man as he drives toward them at end of chase CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Police shot and wounded a man at the end of a chase in Cedar Rapids. Cedar Rapids police say the chase began shortly after 2 a.m. Sunday when officers noticed an orange BMW driving recklessly. The BMW drove the wrong way down a street and turned into an alley before crashing into a telephone pole. When officers approached the BMW, it drove toward them, so officers fired on the vehicle. The male driver was wounded by the gunfire. He was treated at a hospital before being taken to jail. A female passenger in the BMW sustained minor injuries in the crash. She was treated at the hospital and released. The two officers involved were not hurt.
Construction of massive fertilizer plant remains on schedule SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — The construction of a giant $2 billion fertilizer plant remains on schedule in northwest Iowa, but the project is nearing its busiest phase when roughly 2,200 workers will be employed on the job. The Sioux City Journal reports construction of the new CF Industries plant is entering its second year, but it remains on track for completion in 2016. Nick DeRoos, who is overseeing the expansion project, says the construction work slowed over the winter because of the snow, wind and freezing temperatures, but activity is picking up. Two dozen cranes are in use at the site this month. The biggest one can lift as much as 1,000 tons 350 feet in the air.
Will lawmakers start making health care contributions? DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — With many state workers poised to soon make monthly health care contributions for the first time, will Iowa lawmakers follow suit? Under a recent arbitration award, workers in the largest state employees' union will have to start making a monthly contribution of at least $20 to their health benefits starting in January. This will be a shift for the majority of the 19,000 state workers represented by Local 61 the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. Lawmakers in the part-time General Assembly can get plans that don't require a monthly payment. Republican House Speaker Kraig Paulsen says he'd like to change that. But Democratic Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal was less forthcoming on whether he will consider such a change.
Iowa officials worry new science standards may be divisive WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) — The new set of standards for what is taught in Iowa science classrooms could prove divisive because of the sections on evolution and climate change. The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports several members of the State Board of Education and some members of the public expressed concerns about those subjects. Board members Michael Knedler and Mike May said at a meeting last week that they worry that including evolution and climate change could make it difficult to implement the standards statewide. A team of experts is reviewing a set of model science standards. They will make a recommendation to the state board later.
O'Malley: Presidency 'not some crown' families should share WASHINGTON (AP) — Potential Democratic presidential candidate Martin O'Malley says the country needs new perspectives, and he's criticizing the prospects of another Clinton and Bush seeking the White House again. The former Maryland governor tells ABC's "This Week" that the presidency is "not some crown to be passed between two families." He also questions whether former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton would take on special interests. Clinton is a likely presidential candidate and would be the strong favorite for the Democratic nomination. O'Malley recently came to Iowa. He says he'll decide this spring whether he'll run. Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush also recently visited Iowa.
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