• ACE kicks off a new corporate campaign
Webster City Custom Meats, Mary Ann's Specialty Foods and three private donors are leading the way for All Cultures Equal, Incorporated (ACE) to kick off a new corporate campaign called FACE or Funding ACE Sustainably. These companies and individuals understand the value of ACE programs to improve compliance, productivity, safety, understanding, satisfaction and profit for their businesses and this region. ACE is the only multi-cultural community center in north central Iowa that offers classes, programs, events, assistance and space intended to empower individuals and families so that they can be part of thriving communities where they live and work. Currently,dozens of local employees and immigrants are participating in English as a Second Language (ESL) Classes taught by Iowa Central Community College at ACE. The students say that they are taking the three-night nine-hour per week class to improve their work opportunities and communications around the community. Members of the Conversational and Occupational Spanish Classes taught by a multi-cultural linguistic specialist say they are taking the courses to be able to communicate with employees, clients, neighbors, family members, for vacation purposes and just for fun. Once ESL students learn English if they don't have a high school degree, Iowa Central Community College and ACE helps them obtain their GED or High School Equivalency Test. When the timing is right, immigrants from many countries come to Citizenship Classes at ACE prepare for the United States Citizenship/Naturalization Test. Other ACE classes improve health and help people understand services and laws in the area. These companies are particularly interested in ACE becoming an approved site to help immigrants with their paperwork, World Relief sponsors Immigration Advocacy Training where non-profit and government agencies can be trained and approved by the U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration Appeals to receive Immigration Advocacy Accreditation. The closest agencies doing that in Iowa are in Des Moines, Davenport and Sioux City. ACE is also the home of three of the world's best strategies to get local people and visitors together to celebrated local culture-gardens, markets and cultural celebrations. Through the FACES corporate campaign, ACE is creating awareness and asking for support from 42 area businesses where current ACE ESL students and their families work or would like to work.If you are interested in learning more about this program, please contact ACE at 515-832-4153 or visit them at 1440 East Second Street in Webster City.
• Fort Dodge Police investigating a robbery and theft that injures a Fort Dodge man.
Police in Fort Dodge early Wednesday morning were dispatched to Grand Daddy's Bar at 1104 Central Avenue. As officers arrived,the victim, 55 year old Daniel Habhab of Fort Dodge stated that he had closed the bar for the night when he heard a knock at the door. Habhab unlocked the door when two younger males walked in and stood in the area of the front entry. Habhab told the men that the bar was closed. When he turned to open the door to let them out, Habhab was jumped from behind. Habhab was fighting with the suspects.He was struck several times. An undetermined amount of cash was taken from Habhab before they fled the scene on foot. Officers checked the area but were unable to locate the suspects. Habhab received a cut to his arm during the incident but declined medical attention at the scene. Anyone with information on this incident should contact the Fort Dodge Police Department at 515-573-1426.
• Hamilton County sees increase in unemployment for December.
Hamilton County saw an increase in its unemployment numbers for December. The Iowa Workforce Development office announced Tuesday that the rate for last month was at 5.3 percent up from the November rate of 4.4 percent. There were 6,330 people employed while 360 residents were unemployed. Iowa's unemployment rate for December stood at 4.1 percent down from the November figure of 4.3 percent. The unemployment rates for surrounding counties for December included Boone at 3 percent, Franklin at 3.6 percent,Hardin at 4.2 percent, Story at 2.7 percent, Webster at 5.1 percent and Wright at 3.8 percent.
• Tax workshop coming to the Hamilton County ISU Extension and Outreach office Thursday evening.
• Hamilton County Conservation Board look at a solar array system for Little Wall Lake Park.