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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Children younger than 16 could avoid future federal regulation and continue to work on their parents' Missouri farms under legislation signed by Gov. Jay Nixon.

The measure signed on Friday responds to the federal government's proposed rules last year that would have prevented children from doing certain agricultural work. That proposal was eventually scrapped, but the Missouri Legislature moved forward and passed legislation preventing such regulation anyway.

The bill exempts children doing farm work from getting a work certificate and from limits on the number of hours and days they can work. Children would only need the consent of their parents to work on the family's farm. It was sponsored by Republican Sen. Brian Munzlinger, of Williamstown.

 

Published in Local News

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Missouri prosecutors advising police on undercover investigations now have greater legal protection that their conduct won't violate ethical rules.

A recent change to the Missouri Supreme Court's Rules of Professional Conduct explicitly allows government lawyers to collaborate on undercover operations without risking sanction for professional misconduct.

The amendment further codifies a tactic that former Cape Girardeau County prosecutor Morley Swingle calls "the oldest trick in the criminal investigator's book" - lying to a suspect to help solve a case. Swingle is now an assistant U.S. attorney.

Missouri is among 10 states to make similar revisions to its conduct codes for lawyers. Many came in response to a Colorado case in which a prosecutor's law license was suspended after he posed as a public defender to elicit a murder confession.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri House committee has advanced a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at protecting gun rights.

The amendment approved on Tuesday would define the right to bear arms as "unalienable" and require the state to defend against any "infringement" of that right. It would also include defending one's "family" with a firearm as a guaranteed constitutional right.

Sponsoring Republican Sen. Kurt Schaefer, of Columbia, says the legislation would protect against proposed gun control laws at the state and federal level.

The Senate passed the same measure earlier this year. If passed by the full House, Missouri voters would need to approve the constitutional change.

 

Published in Local News

CARUTHERSVILLE, Mo. (AP) - Police in southeast Missouri are investigating a road rage incident on Interstate 55 that included several shots fired into a car.

KFVS-TVreports that a silver Sport utility vehicle passed a car Monday afternoon and suddenly slammed on its brakes, causing the car to strike the rear of the SUV.

Pemiscot County Sheriff's Capt. Ryan Holder says someone got out of the SUV with a handgun and fired seven or eight shots into the car. Four people in the car were not struck by any bullets but were injured by broken glass.

Authorities continue to search for the SUV. It isn't clear what prompted the attack.

 
Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri public schools and universities will be getting a funding increase under an agreement by legislative budget negotiators.

A group of House and Senate members decided Tuesday to provide a $25 million funding increase to public colleges and universities based on whether they have met performance criteria such as student graduation rates. That's less than the $34 million increase sought by Gov. Jay Nixon but more than the House had approved earlier this year.

The budget also includes $10 million for the University of Missouri medical school to expand a residency program at the Cox Health system in Springfield.

Public school districts would get a $66 million increase to their $3 billion of core funding - the same amount Nixon recommended.

Published in Local News

 

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri lawmakers have until Friday to finalize the state's roughly $25 billion operating budget.

The House and Senate have each passed their own budget and now must hammer out an agreement on the spending plan that will take effect July 1. Budget negotiators were scheduled to begin formal talks Monday, but delayed that until Tuesday.

The House and Senate must reconcile differences on higher education funding and whether to keep intact cuts made to state agencies over concerns about the new drivers' license procedures.

One item not up for debate this week is Gov. Jay Nixon's plan to draw down nearly $1 billion from the federal government to expand Medicaid coverage for about 260,000 adults. Neither the House nor Senate included the federal money in their budget proposals.

 

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri officials are celebrating the 100th anniversary of groundbreaking for the state Capitol.

Dirt first was turned in 1913 at a ceremony held in Jefferson City for the start of construction. The current building replaced one that burned in February 1911 after lightning struck its dome.

The cornerstone was laid in 1915, the first government offices moved into the structure in 1917 and the building was dedicated in 1924

Gov. Jay Nixon, Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard and House Speaker Tim Jones attended Monday's ceremony, praising the Capitol's design and appearance.

Published in Local News

PECULIAR, Mo. (AP) — A 21-year-old Missouri man is accused of impersonating a police officer during two traffic stops, including one that sparked an armed confrontation with a shotgun-toting teenager.

The Kansas City Star reports Beaudonavan Martin Jr. of Peculiar has been charged with two felony counts of unlawful use of a weapon and one misdemeanor count of impersonating an officer.

One man told police the suspect was "cussing and very angry" during an encounter Tuesday night. In a second case that night, a teenage couple asked a friend to get his shotgun because someone was tailgating them and flashing his lights.

The two victims arrived at the friend's location and say the suspect got out of his vehicle holding a handgun and ordered the teen with the shotgun to drop it.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Amid the risk of losing millions of dollars in federal transportation funding, Missouri lawmakers are considering changes to rules for commercial driver's licenses.

State House members this week gave initial approval to legislation that seeks to comply with federal regulations dealing with learning permits for commercial driver's licenses and with restrictions on texting and using hand-held cellphones while driving a commercial vehicle.

The Missouri Transportation Department says the state could lose $30 million for one year and $60 million annually after that if it doesn't act quickly enough.

The legislation needs another round of approval in the House before it can move to the Senate. Lawmakers have until their mandatory adjournment on May 17 to approve new legislation.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri senator blocked a vote on a bill that would base some state funding for Missouri public universities on performance standards and career placement.

Republican Sen. Kurt Schaefer, of Columbia, blocked the Senate vote Thursday. He says the Legislature should spend more time studying the effects of the proposed higher education funding formula before voting. Lawmakers have until fiscal year 2015 to put the formula in place.

Under the legislation, 10 percent of state funding to universities would be tied to whether a school meets performance and career placement goals.

Currently, the state allots money to higher education institutions based largely upon how much colleges and universities received in the past and how much Missouri has available for the future.

 

Published in Local News

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