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Cedar Rapids Gazette Newspaper Archives May 25 2015, Page 1

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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - May 25, 2015, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Monday, May 25, 2015 IOWA TODAY Hitting the road this summer Due to lower gas prices, analysts say this year could see record number of travelers, Page 2A NATION/ WORLD Turning things around Chicago judge helps first- time felons work their way back to a clean slate, Page 5A COMMUNITY Put your name on a memorial Personalized bricks in Johnson County installation now available for donors, Page 7A SPORTS Montoya makes it two at Indy NASCAR & Formula 1 veteran scores second Indy 500 victory, a recordsetting 15 years after his first, Page 1B By Orlan Love, The Gazette I t didn’t take long for a pair of sandhill cranes to prove the adage, “ If you build it, they will come.” A wetland built last winter at Linn County’s Matsell Bridge Natural Area is home this spring to the county’s first documented successfully reproducing sandhill cranes of the modern era. “ This is awesome, unbelievable, really cool,” said natural resources specialist Dana Kellogg, who coordinated the wetland construction. Linn County officials noticed a pair of sandhills in the wetland this spring. But they did not realize that the pair had become parents until a colt, as sandhill chicks are called, turned up in pictures Matsell Bridge Natural Area manager Aaron Batchelder was taking of one of the adults. Batchelder said he took the photos on May 12, but he didn’t notice the youngster until he was reviewing the images the following day. “ The little guy photobombed me,” he said. Linn County Conservation Director Dan Biechler said he was “ excited but not really surprised” to learn that sandhills had settled the wetland so quickly. Nesting sandhills, gone from Iowa for nearly a century, began reappearing in 1992, when the first successful Iowa nesting in 98 years was recorded in Tama County’s Otter Creek Wildlife Area. As of last year, sandhills had reproduced in 26 Iowa counties and had been sighted in 33 others, according to the Department of Natural Resources. KCRG- TV9 FIRST ALERT WEATHER, 13B TODAY 79/ 61 Rain early, breezy Tuesday Wednesday 76/ 58 77/ 54 Eastern Iowa’s independent, locally owned newspaper www. thegazette. com $ 1.00 VOL. 133 NO. 136 © 2015 The Gazette INDEX • CLASSIFIEDS ............. 6B • COMICS ..................... 5B • DEAR ABBY ............. 14B • DEATHS ................... 10A • HOROSCOPES.......... 11B • LOTTERY .................... 9A • PUZZLES ................. 14B • RIVER LEVELS ........... 9A • SPORTS ..................... 1B • TV ............................ 13B • WEATHER ................ 13B Saluting veterans See list of area events that honor troops for Memorial Day, 7A Players, teams to watch this summer Sports, 1B Previewing prep baseball IN THE NEWS Daily © 2015 The Gazette Aaron Batchelder/ Linn County Conservation A colt ( baby sandhill crane) can be seen to the lower left of an adult crane May 12 at the Matsell Bridge Natural Area near Central City. OUTDOORS Adam Wesley/ The Gazette A sandhill crane flies over a wetland May 18 at the Matsell Bridge Natural Area near Central City. Cranes make a comeback Wetland sees first documented case of sandhills reproducing in ‘ modern era’ State is ninth- highest in the nation for average debt load among graduates By Erin Murphy, Gazette- Lee Des Moines Bureau DES MOINES — Logun Buckley is eager to graduate from college and pursue a career. He is less excited about the student loan payments that await him. “ I’m not looking forward to it. I guess I’m worried that I’m going to default on my loans. It’s a possibility,” said Buckley, a senior at the University of Northern Iowa who plans to graduate in 2017. “ I’m going to try my best to get a job and to pay it back, but sometimes you don’t have enough to cover rent or this extra bill every month.” Living with loads of student debt is a reality for Iowa’s college graduates. The state ranks among the highest in the nation in average student debt load, percent of graduates with debt and percent of graduates who default on their loans. College student loan debt nationwide has surpassed $ 1 trillion. It jumped 25 percent between 2008 and 2012, according to the not- for- profit Institute for College Access and Success, and eclipsed credit card debt to become the second- highest form of consumer debt behind only mortgages, according to the Federal Reserve. Iowa graduates are faring worse than most: The state has the nation’s ninth- highest average debt at $ 29,370 and ninthhighest percentage of graduates with debt at 69 percent, according to the Institute for College Access and Success, and the fifth- highest default rate at 17.3 percent, according to U. S. Department of Education data.” MANY FACTORS TO BLAME The increase in student debt has been attributed to the rapidly increasing cost of college, which has outpaced inflation and income growth, lower education funding levels, and more students attending college. State funding to higher education in 2014 was 10 percent lower than it was in 2005, according to a report from the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association. Meantime, the cost of college rose 70 percent between 2002 HIGHER EDUCATION Loan debt still burdens Iowa grads MILITARY By Christi Parsons, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — The Obama administration intensified its defense of the president’s strategy against the Islamic State group, with Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter making a vigorous case that the terrorist group can be defeated only if the Iraqis “ develop the will to fight.” After Islamic State victories in the Iraqi city of Ramadi and in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra last week, Carter fended off suggestions that it’s time to position U. S. ground troops and troop air controllers near the trouble spots to contain the Islamic State. Local officials and fighters must take responsibility, he said. “ They are the ones that have to beat ISIL and keep them beat,” Carter said on CNN’s “ State of the Union,” using the government’s preferred acronym for the group. “ We can participate in the defeat of ISIL, but we can’t make Iraq run as a decent place for people to live. We can’t sustain the victory; only the Iraqis can do that.” The U. S. role in the turbulent region might change at some point, Carter acknowledged. But the fall of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, shows a need for the U. S. to help improve the Iraqis’ equipment and training while “ encouraging their Defense chief: Iraq needs ‘ will to fight’ Islamic State Reuters U. S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Sunday that Islamic State can be defeated in Iraq only if Iraqis “ develop the will to fight.” ; CRANES, PAGE 11A ; LOANS, PAGE 11A ; IRAQ, PAGE 11A

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