Author

Jared Strong

Jared Strong

Senior reporter Jared Strong has written about Iowans and the important issues that affect them for more than 15 years, previously for the Carroll Times Herald and the Des Moines Register. His investigative work exposing police misconduct has notched several state and national awards. He is a longtime trustee of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council, which fights for open records and open government. He is a lifelong Iowan and has lived mostly in rural western parts of the state.

Heavy rains improve drought in southeast Iowa

By: - September 23, 2022

Heavy weekend rains have helped alleviate “extreme” drought conditions in southeast Iowa. Last week, multiple counties in the area were suffering from extreme drought — the second-to-worst dryness condition in ratings by the U.S. Drought Monitor. Drought conditions were upgraded to “severe” in the Drought Monitor’s most-recent report on Thursday, leaving no “extreme” ratings in […]

Judge set to consider pipeline land survey request

By: - September 22, 2022

A state district court judge is expected to decide next week whether to grant a pipeline company immediate access to a Woodbury County property for survey work, according to court records. Navigator CO2 Ventures, one of three companies that wants to build a liquid carbon dioxide pipeline in the state, is seeking court orders against […]

DNR drops fine against Ottumwa man for backyard junk

By: - September 22, 2022

A rural Ottumwa man has cleaned a crater filled with junk in his backyard after the state levied a $7,000 fine against him in June after repeated requests to remove the trash, according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. This month, the DNR rescinded the fine. “We finally got his attention,” said Anthony Kerker, […]

Iowa COVID deaths to date this year exceed 2021

By: - September 21, 2022

The number of Iowans infected with COVID-19 who have died since the start of the pandemic has exceeded 10,000, and the death rate so far this year is greater than in 2021, according to state data. As of the end of August, 1,697 infected people have died since the start of the year. That compares […]

Ex-cop who pleaded guilty to stalking a woman faces numerous felonies

By: - September 20, 2022

A former police officer who was hired by two Iowa cities despite a woman’s claims that he harassed and threatened to kill her now faces a litany of criminal charges for similar accusations involving a different woman, according to court records. Walter Pacheco, 28, of Pleasant Hill, was hired for his first police job in […]

Crop conditions steady as harvest begins

By: - September 19, 2022

With the state’s corn harvest underway, about 64% of the crop is rated good or excellent, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report on Monday. That’s better than what the state’s corn was rated last year at this time — when it was 58% good or excellent — but the USDA predicts average yields […]

State health department is not reporting COVID-19 reinfections

By: - September 16, 2022

Iowa does not include subsequent COVID-19 infections of the same person in the number of newly confirmed cases it reports to federal health officials or in the weekly case updates on its website, even though other states do. Further, Iowa Department of Health and Human Services officials say they are unaware of the state’s rate […]

Landowners say forced pipeline surveys are unconstitutional

By: - September 15, 2022

An Iowa law that allows hazardous liquid pipeline companies to access private property for land surveys violates the state’s constitution, several landowners are arguing in state court. That argument is a response to lawsuits that Navigator CO2 Ventures filed against them last month that claim the landowners have barred the company’s agents from conducting the […]

Dairy farm fined for 200,000-gallon manure discharge into creek

By: - September 15, 2022

The owner of a northwest Iowa dairy farm was ordered to pay the state more than $36,000 for a massive manure release last year that killed nearly 100,000 small fish in a nearby creek, according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. The manure discharge happened in April 2021 when a worker at Rock Bottom […]

GOP ag leaders raise specter of regulation in Iowa’s Senate race

By: - September 14, 2022

Republican agriculture leaders sought Wednesday to frame Iowa’s U.S. Senate race as a choice between voluntary conservation practices and mandatory regulations — a characterization the Democratic candidate rejects. “I believe those things should be voluntary in nature,” Mike Naig, the state’s agriculture secretary, told reporters Wednesday in support of U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa. “I […]

Declines of Iowa COVID cases and hospitalizations continue

By: - September 14, 2022

The number of state-reported cases of COVID-19 dipped slightly over the past week, and hospitalizations among those infected are trending downward, according to state and federal data. The Iowa Department of Public Health reported 4,109 new cases on Wednesday, a 2% decline from a week ago. There were 232 infected people receiving inpatient treatment at […]

USDA more than triples funding for ‘climate smart’ agriculture

By: - September 14, 2022

The Biden administration plans to distribute more than $3 billion to fund projects that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and sequester carbon in agriculture and forestry — a tripling of its initial commitment in February. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack was set to publicly announce the expansion of the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities program […]