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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri's Republican House leader wants a legislative hearing on allegations of a hostile workplace in parts of Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon's administration.

House Speaker Tim Jones said Friday that he has asked the House Government Oversight and Accountability Committee to convene a hearing on the issue. That comes after former employees in the departments of agriculture and labor recently went public with assertions of intimidation and discrimination by former department directors.

Nixon spokesman Scott Holste said Friday that the administration tries to foster a workforce that is "professional in demeanor and inclusive in its composition."

Republican House member Jay Barnes, of Jefferson City, is chairman of the oversight committee. He says the hearing will focus on whether Nixon's office is diligently vetting applicants before making appointments to key positions.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri Senate leader has put forth a new, pared-back proposal dealing with the enforcement of federal gun control laws.

Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard released a draft Thursday of proposed legislation for the 2014 session seeking to nullify federal gun control laws that infringe on Second Amendment rights.

The new proposal comes about seven weeks after Richard and Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey voted against an attempted veto override of a bill addressing the same subject because of concerns about its constitutionality.

Unlike the original bill, the new proposal would not subject federal authorities to state misdemeanor charges for trying to enforce certain federal gun control laws. It also eliminates a provision that could have resulted in charges against journalists for publishing the names of gun owners.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Officials at the Missouri Cattlemen's Association say the state's former agriculture director made threats toward them after he was displeased with a magazine article.

Jon Hagler was replaced earlier this month as head of the Agriculture Department with little explanation from Gov. Jay Nixon. The move came one day after another high-ranking employee, Beth Ewers, resigned while distributing a letter saying Hagler created a work environment of "hostility, disrespect, intimidation and fear."

Now the cattlemen's group says Hagler also acted with hostility toward its CEO, Mike Deering.

Cattlemen's president Chuck Massengill and other group leaders say that Hagler threatened to beat up Deering earlier this year after Deering wrote an article critical of Hagler.

Hagler did not return messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

 

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 30 October 2013 14:45

Funeral arraignments set for Rep. Ike Skelton

LEXINGTON, Mo. (AP) - Funeral services have been announced for former Missouri congressman Ike Skelton.

The Walker-Nadler-Fuller Funeral Home says visitation is scheduled from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday in Grondyke Hall at Wentworth Military Academy in Lexington.

Skelton's funeral will be held at 2 p.m. Monday at Wikoff Hall, also on the Wentworth campus. A burial service with military rites is to occur at the Machpelah Cemetery in Lexington.

Skelton died this past Monday of complications from pneumonia at a hospital in Virginia. He was 81.

Skelton served in the U.S. House for 34 years before losing re-election in 2010. He never served in the military but was chairman of the House Armed Services Committee and a staunch advocate for the armed forces.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Supreme Court has ruled against a Highway Patrol trooper's same-sex partner who sought survivor benefits.

Patrol Cpl. Dennis Engelhard died in December 2009 when he was struck by a vehicle while investigating an accident on Interstate 44 in Eureka.

Missouri law entitles surviving spouses of Highway Patrol officers killed in the line of duty to an annuity. Engelhard's partner, Kelly Glossip, did not receive the benefit.

In a 5-2 ruling Tuesday, the Supreme Court said Glossip was denied benefits because he and Engelhard were not married - not because of his sexual orientation.

The court noted that Glossip had not challenged Missouri's prohibition of same-sex marriage.

 

Published in Local News

   KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Former Missouri Congressman Ike Skelton, a champion of the military who served 17 terms in the U.S. House before losing a re-election bid in 2010, has died. He was 81.

   Skelton died Monday at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, Va., surrounded by family and friends, including longtime colleague Russell Orban.

   The cause was not immediately released, but Orban says Skelton entered the hospital a week earlier with a cough. Oban confirmed Skelton's death to The Associated Press.

   The Lexington, Mo., native was a Democrat and former chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.

   Skelton lost to Republican Vicky Hartzler in 2010 in western Missouri's 4th Congressional District. He then joined the law firm of Kansas City-based Husch Blackwell, working in its offices in Kansas City and Washington.

 
Published in Local News

PARK HILLS, Mo. (AP) - Two eastern Missouri firefighters are facing charges for a string of arsons in the Park Hills area.

The Daily Journal newspaper in Park Hills, Mo., reports that the firefighters, both from Park Hills, are jailed on $200,000 bail each. Their names have not been released pending formal charges.

The break in the case came when the two men were questioned by police in nearby Leadington and by state conservation agents for the alleged illegal shooting of a deer. Leadington Police Chief Rick Pouge says that during questioning, the men admitted to setting several fires over the past several months.

Park Hills Fire Chief Jackie Wagganer says his department is cooperating with investigators. The department is made up most of volunteer firefighters.

Published in Local News

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A reputed prison gang leader who was on probation in California has been captured in Missouri.

Forty-five-year-old Albert "Spanky" Amaya is jailed in Missouri's Pettis County while awaiting extradition. No attorney is listed for him in online Missouri court records.

The Los Angeles Times reports that Amays was sentenced to 25 years to life in state prison in 2008 after he was convicted of extortion, his third felony conviction. But he was released in June after a voter-approved measure allowed "three strikes" inmates to seek re-sentencing.

The San Bernardino County district attorney's office placed him on GPS monitoring while seeking to send him back to prison. Authorities allege he was a crew chief for the Mexican Mafia prison gang and fled after cutting the GPS device.

 

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 23 October 2013 07:34

Mo. officials: Help prevent deer disease spread

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri's firearms deer season takes place next month, and conservation officials are asking hunters to help prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease.

 

   The disease is deadly to deer, but there is no evidence it can affect humans. Deer can be affected through exposure to soil containing abnormal proteins that are called prions. The prions can get into soil when infected deer decompose on the surface.

 

   The Conservation Department says hunters should avoid cutting through the spine, brain or bones. If hunters must move a whole carcass, they should send the non-edible parts to state-approved landfills for proper burial. 

Published in Local News

The Missouri Legislative Black Caucus is pushing back against Governor Jay Nixon's plan to change eligibility for food stamps.

State Senator Jamilah Nasheed spoke out at Mount Airy Missionary Baptist Church in North St. Louis. She says 58,000 Missouri adults could lose access to food stamp. Nixon has proposed removing Missouri from a waiver that allows childless adults to receive food stamps without meeting certain work requirements.

Nasheed spoke to Fox 2 News, "This is not the right thing to do. Have compassion for the poor, have a heart for the poor, and we`re going to do everything that we can to reverse this decision."

Nixon defends the decision, saying federal food stamp benefits could decrease. 

 

Published in Local News

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