News Minute: Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Pr - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

News Minute: Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press at 11:40 a.m. CST


GUTHRIE CENTER, Iowa (AP) - A judge has set a new trial starting date of Sept. 17 for a man charged with murder and arson in Guthrie County. Patrick Thompson has pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of attempted murder and one count of arson. The May 15 fire killed 16-year-old Shakiah Cockerham and 12-year-old Melanie "Paige" Exline and injured their uncle, William Long III, and grandmother, Shirley Exline.

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Authorities say another of the 79 firearms stolen from a Lincoln store in 2007 has turned up in another state. Public Safety Director Tom Casady told the Lincoln Journal Star that police in Sioux City, Iowa, found the handgun among several guns in the home where they believe a 26-year-old man was fatally wounded Jan. 10. Casady says 55 have now turned up in several states and even Mexico.

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A special election Tuesday will decide who will replace Republican Jim Carlin in the Iowa House. Democrat Rita DeJong and Republican Jacob Bossman are competing for the District 6 seat. Carlin vacated it when he won a special election to the state Senate last month. The heavily Republican district covers part of Sioux City, the cities of Sergeant Bluff, Bronson and Salix, and some rural areas in northern and southern Woodbury County.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Kim Reynolds wants to spend about $18 million on worker training programs in the next couple years to ensure Iowa employers can fill jobs at a time of low unemployment. Reynolds announced new policies to address Iowa's shortage of qualified workers in her Condition of the State address on Jan. 8. The governor proposed expanding the state's apprenticeship program and creating a scholarship for residents who pursue up to a two-year degree in a high-demand field.

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