KXEL Midday News for Mon. Sep. 14, 2020

KXEL Midday News for Mon. Sep. 14, 2020

FORMER IOWA GOVERNOR TERRY BRANSTAD WILL BE LEAVING BEIJING AND RETURNING STATESIDE IN THE COMING WEEKS. BRANSTAD HAS BEEN THE U.S. AMBASSADOR TO CHINA SINCE 2017, BUT THE ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTS THAT HE INFORMED PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP LAST WEEK THAT HE INTENDS TO STEP DOWN. BRANSTAD’S TIME AS AMBASSADOR CAME DURING A CHALLENGING PERIOD IN U.S./CHINA RELATIONS. TRADE, TECHNOLOGY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE RESPONSE TO THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC WERE ALL POINTS OF CONTENTION. BRANSTAD ALSO BECAME PART OF A RECENT CONTROVERSY WHEN CHINA’S OFFICIAL PEOPLE’S DAILY NEWSPAPER REJECTED AN OPINION PIECE HE WROTE.

A COLLISION AT A RURAL CROSSROADS IN BENTON COUNTY KILLED ONE PERSON AND INJURED ANOTHER ON SUNDAY EVENING. THE VICTIMS’ NAMES HAVE NOT YET BEEN RELEASED. AUTHORITIES SAY, AN ATV DID NOT STOP AT THE INTERSECTION AND HIT A TRUCK NORTHEAST OF BELLE PLAINE. THE INJURED VICTIM IS BEING TREATED AT UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HOSPITAL IN IOWA CITY.

U.S. SURGEON GENERAL JEROME ADAMS IS AN ADVOCATE FOR THE PREVENTATIVE MEASURES WHICH HAVE BEEN PROMOTED TO SLOW THE SPREAD OF COVID-19. ADAMS MADE THOSE COMMENTS DURING A RECENT INTERVIEW AS PART OF KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL. IN IOWA, OVER 74 THOUSAND CASES OF COVID-19 HAVE BEEN REPORTED.

THE NATION’S TOP MEDICAL AUTHORITY SAYS THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC HAS HAD A SIGNIFICANT, MEASURABLE IMPACT. U.S. SURGEON GENERAL JEROME ADAMS DESCRIBES HOW COVID-19 HAS SURPASSED WHAT IS TYPICAL OF THE FLU. ADAMS SAYS AMERICANS NEED TO CONTINUE SOCIAL DISTANCING AND MAKING OTHER MITIGATION EFFORTS.

A CONNECTION BETWEEN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND SOCIAL JUSTICE ISSUES. CHUCK CONNERLY IS THE FOUNDER OF THE IOWA INITIATIVE FOR SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES, AND HE SEES JUST SUCH A CONNECTION. CONNERLY WAS A GUEST THIS MORNING DURING KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL; HEAR MORE AT KXEL.COM.

TWO MOTORCYCLE RIDERS WERE HURT IN AN ACCIDENT NORTHWEST OF DUNKERTON LAST NIGHT. THE BLACK HAWK COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE SAYS THAT AROUND 7 O’CLOCK, THE TWO MOTORCYCLES ENCOUNTERED A DEER ON NORTH RAYMOND ROAD. WHILE TRYING TO DODGE THE ANIMAL AND EACH OTHER, BOTH RIDERS LOST CONTROL. THEY WERE EACH TAKEN TO THE HOSPITAL, ALTHOUGH THEIR INJURIES WERE DESCRIBED AS NOT LIFE-THREATENING.

FORMER IOWA GOVERNOR TERRY BRANSTAD WAS CONFIRMED AS THE U.S. AMBASSADOR TO CHINA IN 2017. OVERNIGHT TWEETS FROM U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE MIKE POMPEO INDICATE BRANSTAD’S TIME IN CHINA IS ALMOST OVER. JUST BEFORE MIDNIGHT, POMPEO THANKED BRANSTAD FOR HIS SERVICE AND NOTED HIS LONG EXPERIENCE WITH CHINA. BRANSTAD’S DECADES-OLD RELATIONSHIP WITH CHINESE PRESIDENT XI JUNPING WAS CONSIDERED A SIGNIFICANT ASSET AT THE TIME OF HIS APPOINTMENT. THE FORMER GOVERNOR REPORTEDLY INFORMED THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION LAST WEEK THAT HE PLANS LEAVE HIS ROLE. BRANSTAD WILL BE 74 LATER THIS YEAR.

THE IOWA INITIATIVE FOR SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES IS WORKING ON HELPING THE CITY OF WATERLOO REDEVELOP ITS CHUCH ROW NEIGHBORHOOD. CHUCK CONNERLY FOUNDED THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA-BASED CENTER. THIS MORNING, CONNERLY TALKED ABOUT THE FUTURE OF CHURCH ROW. MORE OF CONNERLY’S KXEL LIVE AND LOCAL INTERVIEW IS AVAILABLE AT KXEL.COM.

GAS PRICES ARE TICKING UP SLIGHTLY. ON A NATIONWIDE BASES, FILLING UP COSTS ABOUT TWO CENTS PER GALLON MORE THAN IT DID TWO WEEKS AGO. THE AVERAGE PRICE OF REGULAR GRADE GAS IS $2.26, ABOUT 37 CENTS LESS THAN AT THE SAME POINT IN 2019. ANALYSTS SAY CRUDE OIL TRENDS SUGGEST GASOLINE PRICES ARE NOT LIKELY TO CONTINUE GOING UP. THE AVERAGE PRICE OF DIESEL HAS BEEN FLAT AT $2.52 IN THE NATIONWIDE SURVEY.