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COL Board of Regents must pay court costs

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AMES, Iowa -- The Iowa Board of Regents must pay court costs left over from an open records lawsuit filed against the Iowa State University Foundation.

District Court Judge Timothy Finn issued an order last month that requires the regents to pay the remaining $40,000 in legal fees for Mark Gannon, a former employee of the university's college of agriculture, and Arlen Nichols, a retired Des Moines businessman.

Gannon and Nichols sued the foundation in 2002, claiming it refused to release documents the pair requested about donations to the foundation. They claimed it was a violation of the state's open records law.

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled in February that the foundation is a government entity and must open its records. A Story County district court judge ruled in June that the regents were responsible for $65,000 in legal fees Gannon and Nichols accumulated.

Marshalltown hosts fruit, vegetable growers

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa -- The Iowa Fruit and Vegetable Growers two-day educational conference is planned Jan. 26-27 in the Best Western Regency Inn, Marshalltown.

Ron Perry of Michigan State University will discuss apple rootstocks, training systems and organic apple production. Peter Van Well of Van Well Nursery in Wenatchee, Wash., will discuss apple varieties for the Midwest.

Kansas State University's Ted Carey will talk about growing vegetables in high tunnels and Alan Treinen of Lodi, Wis., will discuss marketing entertainment farming.

Bowhunters may be able to kill deer

DES MOINES -- Bowhunters may be allowed into selected residential neighborhoods to kill deer, which have become a pest to some homeowners.

The City Council may consider such a proposal in response to complaints about deer who wander into city neighborhoods, damaging trees and landscaping.

"It's becoming a very serious issue," Councilwoman Christine Hensley said.

The deer population in some areas of Polk County has more than doubled in the past three years, despite controlled hunts to reduce the numbers.

Ethanol plant starts production in Goldfield

GOLDFIELD, Iowa -- An ethanol plant in central Iowa has started production, according to the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association.

The Corn, LP plant will process 20 million bushels of corn into 50 million gallons of ethanol and 150,000 tons of distillers grain each year, the IRFA said in a news release.

"We are proud to welcome Corn, LP as the 21st ethanol plant in Iowa," said Monte Shaw, IRFA's executive director. "This plant is a showcase of the continuing innovation and improvement in the ethanol industry."

Brad Davis, general manager of Corn, LP, said it is the first dry mill plant using Clean Coal Technology in the United States.

"Given the current prices of natural gas, coal offers us a more cost-effective option to power the plant and new technology allows us to utilize coal in an environmentally friendly manner," he said.