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Street project

to resume

Beginning at 8 a.m. Monday, the north leg of the South Coddington Avenue and West Van Dorn Street intersection will close for paving and utility improvements.

Work will follow on the west and east legs, and will be phased so that three legs of the intersection remain open during the project. Access to adjacent businesses and homes will be maintained. The project is expected to be completed in July.

The project began in 2017 and is designed to reduce vehicle crashes by converting a two-way, stop-controlled intersection into a single-lane roundabout.

Other improvements include repairing and rebuilding adjacent sidewalks, trails and box culvert extensions and installing a new storm drainage system and street lights.

Health care option offered state workers

Gov. Pete Ricketts has signed into law a measure that will offer Nebraska state employees additional health care options.

The Legislature passed the measure 42-2, and Ricketts signed it Friday.

State employees will be able to opt into the Direct Primary Care pilot program and pay one recurring fee for a variety of primary care visits. Insurance could also be purchased to cover additional services, like hospital visits.

The pilot program begins in 2019 and will run through 2021.

The measure also allows insurance companies to incentivize patients to shop around to find the lowest cost for upcoming procedures.

Supporters say direct primary care allows doctors and patients to form better relationships and take control of their health care.

Ailing snowy owl nursed to health

ELMWOOD — A snowy owl found starving along a southwest Iowa highway has been nursed back to health at recovery centers in Nebraska and Minnesota.

A motorist found the owl weak and barely able to fly in November near Henderson in southwest Iowa. It was first taken to the Fontenelle Forest’s Raptor Recovery center near Elmwood. Then it was sent to The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Denise Lewis with the Fontenelle Forest center said the bird was released in top shape less than two weeks ago in Minnesota.

The movie bird known as Hedwig in the “Harry Potter” films was depicted as a snowy owl.

- From staff and wire reports

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