News: Drive of rollover accident gets 2 years for second OWI

Aaron Joseph Skalla, 23, of Scraton, Iowa, was sentenced today to 2 years in prison with the Iowa Department of Corrections for a probation violation in his Operating While Intoxicated 2nd Offense case. On February 24, 2014, Aaron Skalla pled guilty to Operating While Intoxicated 2nd Offense in violation of Iowa Code Section 321J.2(B).   On that date, the Court sentenced Aaron Skalla to seven days in jail and probation for two years. On July 30, 2014, a warrant was issued for a probation violation.image001


At the probation violation hearing in the Boone County District Associates Court on September 9, 2014, the Boone County Attorney’s Office, represented by the Boone County Assistant Attorney Kailyn Heston, recommended that Aaron Skalla be sentenced to prison due to his criminal history and probation violation. Aaron Skalla, represented by a local attorney, recommended continued probation. The Court agreed with the State, sentencing Aaron Skalla to two years (2) in prison with the Iowa Department of Corrections.


According to the Certificates of Probable Cause filed with the court, on September 22, 2013, a Boone County Sheriff Deputy was dispatched to a single vehicle rollover. At the scene deputies found a vehicle rolled over. All three occupants in the vehicle were hurt and were treated at the hospital for their injuries. The driver, Aaron Skalla, was found trapped inside the driver’s side of the vehicle. There were several beer cans found around the collision scene. Mr. Skalla appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and officers could smell an odor of alcohol coming from his person. At the hospital he refused a chemical test.


The penalty for Operating While Intoxicated 2nd Offense is up to two years in prison.

News: DMACC Boone to host free STEM Festival

The Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) Boone Campus will host a free, family-friendly STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) Festival on September 29, 2014.

The event will kick-off with dinner offered from 5 to 6 p.m. in the DMACC Boone Campus Courter Center.  The festival follows from 6 to 8 p.m. It is open to the public, with a target audience of third to eighth graders and their families. Registration is required for dinner, but festival walk-ins are welcome.

Partnering with the South Central STEM Hub and the Governor’s STEM Initiative, the festival is an effort to introduce Iowans to educational and career opportunities offered in STEM.  Presenters come from local business and industry, high schools, colleges, and student and professional groups.             Booths feature interactive learning activities, hands-on demonstrations and make-and-takes. In addition, age-appropriate break-out sessions will be offered every hour.

In the past, festival-goers, ranging in age from pre-school to retirement, learned about the geometry of bubbles, technology in robotics, germs on a cell phone and the science in music and art.

“This festival is a one-stop exposure to a variety of STEM opportunities,” said Sarah Derry, South Central STEM Hub Manager. “It’s also a way for business, industry, educators and the community to network.”

Hoover High School’s John Chai brought his high school class to last year’s Drake STEM Festival. He also serves on the South Central STEM Advisory Board and feels it’s important that every person have a quality STEM background.

“To have an understanding of scientific concepts and processes is to have an understanding of the world around you,” said Chai.

Terri Vos from Vermeer Public Relations Department said the connections are great for kids, but good for business, too.

“The earlier we get kids excited about STEM,” said Vos, “the more it will carry through for tomorrow’s workforce.”

To learn more about this opportunity and to register for the event, please visit:

News: Two-year-old discharges gun in downtown Boone; father arrested

The Boone Police Department released the following statement today:

On Sept. 7, 2014, at approximately 3:07 p.m., Boone Police officers were dispatched to the 700 block of Story Street in reference to the discharge of a handgun. The investigation revealed that a male, identified as Ryan Buman, 32 of Des Moines, placed a handgun in the center console of his vehicle. Buman then stepped back outside the vehicle, leaving his two-year-old daughter inside the vehicle. A short time later, the two-year-old was seen holding the handgun. A round that had been left in the chamber was then discharged. The round struck a window and the recoil caused the handgun to strike the two-year-old, causing a laceration to her lip. The two-year-old was treated and released at Boone County Hospital. There were no other injuries.

Buman was arrested and charged with child endangerment.

The handgun in question was a 9 mm Glock.

The Boone Police Department would like to remind gun owners of the following precautions when they are not using their guns. This applies to both residences and motor vehicles:

  • Take the ammunition out of the gun and ensure there is no round in the chamber.
  • Lock the gun and keep it out of reach of children. Hiding the gun is not enough.
  • Lock the ammunition and store it apart from the gun.
  • Store the keys for the gun and ammunition in a different area from where you store household and vehicle keys. Keep the keys out of reach of children.
  • Lock up gun-cleaning supplies, which are often poisonous
  • When handling or cleaning a gun, adults should never leave the gun unattended.

An arrest or the filing of charges is not an indication of guilt.

Agenda: Wednesday, Sept. 10 Boone County Board of Supervisors meeting

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Board Room, Boone County Courthouse


8:30 a.m.       Call meeting to order and approve minutes from previous meeting


                        Consider action on approval of Agenda


8:30 a.m.       Kevin Brown, VA Director

                                    RE:      Introduce VA work study personnel     


9:00 a.m.       Landfill Administrator interview


9:30 a.m.       Discuss GIS position interview information


10:00 a.m.     Darcy Bosch, County Treasurer

RE:      consider approval of abatement of 2013 taxes on the following parcels 088426292482027 and 088426292482028


10:30 a.m.     Sandra Monck, Planning & Development Director

                                    RE:      Planning & Zoning Department update


11:00 a.m.     Scott Smith, Landfill Administrator

RE:      Discuss request for agreement between Chair of Board of Health and Boone County


Discuss issue of contracting with Scott Smith for professional consultation services


Discuss and consider approval of end of employment stipulations between Scott Smith and Boone County


11:30 a.m.     Dan Kolacia, County Attorney

                                    RE:      Closed Session – 21.5 (I) & (H)


Noon               Scott Kruse, Asst. Co. Engineer

                                    RE:      Secondary Road Update




                        Consider approval of clarification on action taken July 16, 2014 when Amendment #1 to the Agreement between Boone County & David Frost for Sanitarian related services was approved, by adding the words “ Amendment #1 purpose is for the County to exercise option of original contract to extend contract executed June 9, 2014 for an additional 90 days


                        Consider approval of payment of claims and issuance of warrants


                        Accept the petition for dis-incorporation for the City of Luther that was delivered to the County on September 4, 2014


                        Review and place on file Iowa DHS Medicaid Offset Reporting Instructions


                        Review and place on file Clerk of District Court Report of Fees Collected for August 2014


                        Review and place on file ICAP 2013 Annual Report


                        Review and approve signing Applications for 2015 Homestead Tax Credits and Applications for 2015 Military Exemption as recommended by Boone County Assessor


                        Consider approval of signing the FY15 IDPH Contract # 588 5 SS08 – County Substance Abuse Prevention Services


                        Consider approval of adopting Resolution 14-26 – Resolution of Support Central Iowa Waste Management Association Comprehensive Solid Waste Management Plan Update


                        Consider approval of accepting the resignation of Bill Sharp from the Boone County Veteran Affairs Commission


                        Consider approval of status change for Randy Mitchell, from full time to part time Jailer, effective September 28, 2014


                        Consider approval of pay adjustment for Doug Twigg, full time Deputy Sheriff, effective August 15, 2014


                        Consider approval of hiring Russell Luke Jennett, part time dispatcher, Boone County Sheriff Department, effective September 10, 2014


                        Consider approval of hiring Jessica Bennett, part time Jailer, Boone County Sheriff Department, effective September 10, 2014


                        Consider approval of pay adjustment for Don Watson, Case Management, County Community Services, effective September 15, 2014

News: Experts at Farm Progress Show Encourage Water Quality Improvement Practices Supported by Research

AMES, Iowa – Nate Anderson, a Cherokee area farmer, had the perfect spot at the 2014 Farm Progress Show. Between large seed company tents and blocks filled with farm equipment, Anderson joined Iowa State University experts and Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey to talk about cover crops and no-till planting – two management tools he uses in his corn-soybean acreage program.

Anderson and Northey, two of the farmers featured in the nutrient management area of the Iowa State University tent, shared their management strategy experiences and listened as farmers talked about management practices for their own farms.

“It’s good for farmers to share their experiences and questions, and find out more about management practices they are considering,” said Anderson. “We need to keep talking and encouraging each other.”

Northey agrees, saying that farmers talking to farmers and learning from each other is going to be the way Iowa ramps up water quality efforts and the implementation of new management practices. “There’s a lot of momentum right now around implementing new practices,” Northey said. “Iowa farmers, universities and agribusiness have been working on water quality issues for a long time, certainly soil conservation issues, but the last few years we have focused on ramping that up.”

It was only natural that Anderson and Northey would be guest experts in the Farm Progress Show tent organized by Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Extension and Outreach. Anderson is a 2010 Iowa State graduate in agronomy and Northey’s state office, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, partnered with Iowa State University and Iowa Department of Natural Resources to create the state’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy as a way to reduce the nitrogen and phosphorus loads in water leaving farm lands.

The best practices outlined in the strategy and the current initiative encouraging the implementation of those practices were the focus of one area of the Iowa State tent at the Farm Progress Show. Matt Helmers, Iowa State University professor in agricultural and biosystems engineering and extension water quality specialist, was the staff expert the day Northey and Anderson were at the show. Helmers said this is an opportune time for folks in agriculture to show that they can make a positive impact on water quality.

“Profitability is important to our farmers,” said Helmers, “Short-term and long-term profitability and economic vitality of agriculture in the state are tied to our soil resources. If we are not protecting our soil resources, we jeopardize the long-term profitability of our agricultural system.”

Helmers and other Iowa State researchers, faculty and extension specialists talked to farm show visitors about research being conducted around the suite of management practices outlined in the state strategy. Helmers said research is looking at how well the practices are performing, related costs and long-term benefits.

Water quality initiative funding from the Iowa legislature is enticing farmers to try practices new to them. “We’ll learn more by doing,” said Northey. “We encourage every farmer to find something that works for them – try cover crops in a small way, try no-till or strip-till, look at getting cost share on a bioreactor. We are seeing a great success in farmer participation.”

He said the number of acres with cover crops has doubled each of the last few years and there are increasing numbers of farmers trying no-till, strip-till and nitrification inhibitors.

“Young farmers like Nate Anderson will be part of figuring out what this next generation of conservation ethic is, and how we care for the land, how we improve water quality. It’s fun to join Iowa State in these conversations.”

More information about the water quality initiative best management practices is available in the ISU Extension and Outreach publication, Reducing Nutrient Loss: Science Shows What Works, available from the Extension Online Store, Take a closer look at the practices and Iowans implementing them The clean water Iowa website includes best practices for residential and urban, and city and industry, as well as for farms.

News: HyperStream Technology Club Seeks 5th-8th Grade Members

In collaboration with the Technology Association of Iowa and its Educational Foundation, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach in Story and Boone Counties is accepting enrollments from 5th through 8th grade youth for the HyperStream Technology 4-H Club. The first meeting will be Thursday, September 25 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. at the DMACC Career Center, Room 217, at 1420 S Bell Avenue in Ames. Parents are encouraged to attend this meeting. Meetings will be held every other week on Thursdays at the same time and location.


Technology is everywhere, and it’s changing the world! HyperStream brings real-world technology projects to youth where they learn from experts in the field. HyperStream isn’t just about programming software or networking computers; it’s so much more.   No matter what a child’s passions or skills are or what they want to do when they grow up, technology will play a role, and HyperStream will prepare them for now and the future!

Benefits for the members include:

  • an opportunity to explore personal passions and interests in the world of technology,
  • gaining real-world experience through hands-on tech projects, such as multimedia, game design/programming, LEGO robotics, Arduinos, and more,
  • learning from experienced professional technology mentors,
  • participating in competitions,
  • field trips to see technology in practice in the workplace,
  • gathering insights for career direction,
  • doing a service learning project, and
  • having FUN!


Members will learn about a variety of mediums as they dapple into fields of photography, photo editing, video production, presentation software, web design and more.  Multimedia teams create a collection of multimedia projects wrapped around marketing and product development. Members will be challenged to understand the purpose and procedures of robotics.  Using Lego Mindstorms NXT software and education kits, teams build robots and create coding commands for robots to follow. Teams will experiment with programming logic and language while they blend technology with creativity to create educational game worlds with virtual characters and plots.

Contact Annette Brown, 4-H Youth Development Specialist, at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, 515-432-3882 or to request enrollment information or visit Volunteer leaders are Larry Hall from Story County and Tammy and Mason (teen leader) Porter from Boone County.

The HyperStream 4-H Club is a part of the Governor’s STEM Scale Up Initiative. Learn more about HyperStream at Learn about the Technology Association of Iowa at

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