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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has signed a major disaster declaration for 18 Missouri counties hit hard by last month's floods.

The floods that resulted from nearly two weeks of heavy rain caused widespread damage across the southern tier of the state and left at least three people dead.

The White House said in a news release that federal funding is available to help local governments and nonprofits recover. The counties that will benefit are Barry, Camden, Cedar, Dade, Dallas, Laclede, Maries, McDonald, Miller, Osage, Ozark, Phelps, Pulaski, Shannon, Taney, Texas, Webster and Wright.

Federal funding is also available for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

Published in Local News

DEXTER, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri man who says he had sexual contact with as many 300 people since being diagnosed with HIV has pleaded not guilty to infecting another man with the virus.

David Mangum entered the plea Thursday. Stoddard County prosecutor Russell Oliver says more potential victims have come forward since Mangum was charged last week with recklessly infecting another with HIV, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Oliver says additional charges are expected. Mangum's attorney didn't return messages.

Court documents allege Mangum told detectives in Dexter, a small town in southeast Missouri, that he had unprotected sex with as many as 300 partners since he was diagnosed a decade ago. As many as 60 of those contacts allegedly occurred after he moved to Missouri from Dallas in 2011.

Published in Local News
Thursday, 05 September 2013 16:26

Missouri park to host Vulture Awareness Day

MINDENMINES, Mo. (AP) - A homely bird with a rather unappetizing diet will get its due when a southwest Missouri state park celebrates International Vulture Awareness Day.

The Carthage Press reports the staff at Prairie State Park in western Barton County has planned several activities for Saturday's observance, most of them aimed at children.

Vulture Awareness Day was started by bird conservation groups in England and South Africa. It's now observed by zoos, wildlife centers and other organizations around the world.

Prairie State Park specialist Dana Hoisington says vultures help keep the environment healthy by feasting on dead animals that other carnivores are unable to eat.

Along with vulture-related projects, park employees hope to attract a real vulture or two Saturday by placing a ripe carcass a careful distance from the visitors' center.

Published in Local News
Thursday, 05 September 2013 12:43

Lindbergh School District tops in the state

Some good news for one area school district.

For the fourth year in-a-row, the Lindbergh School District ranked tops in academic achievement in Missouri.

State education officials used data from the MAP test results to create the rankings. Students in the district in grades K-12 excelled in communication arts and math. Lindbergh High School had the highest score of any school in English-language arts. And three of Lindbergh's elementary schools ranked in the top 10 schools in the state.

The impressive performance led Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to label the district "Accredited with Distinction". 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has no plans to call a special legislative session to craft a new version of a bill cutting income taxes.

Nixon spokesman Scott Holste said Wednesday that trying to put together a new bill at the last moment would be an irresponsible approach to a complex issue.

Nixon vetoed a bill earlier this year that would cut income taxes. Lawmakers are to convene Sept. 11 to consider overriding that veto.

Republican House member T.J. Berry, of Kearney, was the sponsor of that bill. He had asked Nixon to call a special session to begin the same day as the veto session. Berry says lawmakers could correct problems Nixon noted in the legislation.

Holste says Nixon is willing to work on the issue during the 2014 session.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri teachers union says it is spending at least $100,000 on commercials urging state lawmakers to uphold the governor's veto of an income tax cut.

The Missouri chapter of the National Education Association says the TV and radio spots began running Tuesday and will continue for a week. The ads assert the tax cut would benefit "corporate special interests" while "stealing money from our schools."

Lawmakers are to convene Sept. 11 to decide whether to override Gov. Jay Nixon's veto.

Supporters of the legislation have been running their own ads for weeks. They have been financed largely by nearly $2.4 million in contributions from retired investment firm executive Rex Sinquefield.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Parts of southern Missouri experienced flash flooding this past month. Now parts of northern Missouri are in a flash drought.

That's the phrase being used to describe the sudden onset of drought conditions due to a spike in hot, dry, sunny days with low humidity.

A U.S. Drought Monitor map released last week shows that about a dozen northern Missouri counties are in a severe drought, and moderate drought conditions cover almost the whole northern half of the state.

University of Missouri climatologist Pat Guinan says this may have been the driest August since 1984 in northern Missouri. But because of cooler conditions earlier this summer, he says most crops were in decent condition until the last 10 days of August.

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 28 August 2013 03:32

Several new MO laws take effect today

   Dozens of new laws take affect in Missouri today.  Among them is the new carry conceal permit law, which shifts the process of issuing permits to county sheriff's departments and away from the state Department of Revenue.

   Other new laws on the books today will hike the fines for passing or speeding in emergency zones on highways, allow drivers to show proof of insurance using their smartphones and tablets, and let cities decide if they want to allow ATVs on their streets.

   There's a new law encouraging Missouri schools to teach first-graders the National Rifle Association’s Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program. 

   And another that requires scrap metal dealers to keep records of transactions involving catalytic converters.

 
Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri lawmaker arrested for possessing marijuana says he is resigning from a Democratic campaign position but not from office.

Rep. Jeremy LaFaver said Monday he is stepping down as chairman of the House Democratic Victory Committee, which raises money for House candidates.

But LaFaver told The Associated Press he is not resigning from the House, because he believes he can still be an effective lawmaker.

The Missouri Republican Party has said LaFaver should resign.

LaFaver was arrested Sunday after a traffic stop in Boone County for possessing a marijuana pipe and up to 1.2 ounces of marijuana. He has apologized for the incident.

LaFaver sponsored an unsuccessful bill this year that would have lowered penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana.

Published in Local News

GOLDEN CITY, Mo. (AP) - Authorities say a body found in southwest Missouri is that of 12-year-old Adriaunna Horton, who had been missing since Monday.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol announced the identification late Thursday. Adriaunna was last seen when she got into a vehicle in Golden City, where she lived with her father. Her mother lives in Overland Park, Kan.

A man who once worked with the girl's father, 34-year-old Bobby Bourne Jr. of Lamar, has been jailed on charges of kidnapping. He's being held on $1 million bond.

The Joplin Globe reports Bourne is now in the Jasper County jail. Derek Walrod, a captain with the Jasper County Sheriff's Department, says Barton County officials wanted Bourne transferred to a larger, more secure jail.

Published in Local News

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