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Colin Jeffery

Colin Jeffery

Missouri National Guard handling IDs for gay spouses

Sunday, 24 November 2013 09:52 Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri National Guard is processing requests from same-sex partners for military ID cards.

A Pentagon policy taking effect in early September makes same-sex spouses of gay military members eligible for health care and other benefits that also are available to opposite-sex partners. The decision does not apply to unmarried gay partners.

Missouri National Guard spokeswoman Major Tammy Spicer says the guard is following the Department of Defense's policy and processes requests for those who can provide proof of marriage. She says ID cards have been issued to same-sex partners but that the exact number of couples who received the IDs was not available this weekend.

Officials in other states have refused to issue the ID cards at their facilities.

Parents: NY teacher note said kids were 'dirty'

Saturday, 23 November 2013 08:00 Published in National News

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — A New York teacher could be in hot water after sending a note home with her pre-kindergarten students saying some of them were showing up to school so dirty she didn't want to touch them.

Parents say the handwritten note was sent home by a teacher at the Buffalo School District's BUILD Academy. The Nov. 14 letter says several of the 3- and 4-year-old children "also give off unpleasant smells."

The letter also requests the signatures of parent and child to confirm it was received.

The Buffalo News reports the school board concluded the teacher should face disciplinary action.

Kimberly Wells says she was shocked by the letter her granddaughter brought home. She says it made the girl ask if her teacher thinks she stinks.

Guilty plea in bird deaths at wind farms a first

Saturday, 23 November 2013 07:58 Published in National News

WASHINGTON (AP) — A major U.S. power company has pleaded guilty to killing eagles and other birds at two Wyoming wind farms as part of the first enforcement of environmental laws protecting birds against wind energy facilities.

Under the settlement Friday, North Carolina-based Duke Energy Corp. and its renewable energy arm agreed to pay $1 million. Much of the money will go toward conservation efforts.

The company pleaded guilty to killing 14 eagles and 149 other birds at two wind farms outside Casper, Wyo., from 2009 to 2013.

Wind farms are clusters of turbines as tall as 30-story buildings, with spinning rotors.

Before the case, no wind energy company had been prosecuted for the death of an eagle or other protected bird — even though such deaths are usually a federal violation.

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