Archives for December 2010

State Parks Youth Corps Program to be Renewed

Governor Nixon said he plans to renew the state’s State Parks Youth Corps Program. The program uses federal funds to pay Missourians between 17 and 21 to do work in nearly all of the 85 state parks and historic sites. Scott Holste, the Governor’s spokesman, says there’s a wide range of tasks. He said in the past year, the Youth Corps put more than 187 thousand hours in at the parks, putting roofs on 25 buildings, used two thousand gallons of paint and blazed about 650 miles of trails in nearly 60 state parks. Holste said not only do the parks benefit, but the young workers do too, and they get paid for it.

Going Missing Can be Prevented

More than 1200 Missourians are missing. Some have been missing for a long, long time.
Highway Patrol’s Erik Eidson says there are ways to prevent people from going missing, like fingerprinting your kids. His problem — not enough people to help with that.
He said, “Its not something that we do everyday, in fact, its probably not something that we do every week just because we don’t have the manpower to be able to do that. But yes, we will do that if we’re requested.”
Eidson said missing people in Missouri go back to 1953, but many of those have never been found. Many,Eidson says, do turn up safe.

Don’t Ignore the Mail

Don’t ignore the mail.

The Missouri Department of Insurance is warning people to be aware of charges now that they haven’t paid in the past. Spokesman Travis ford said you might find out about new fees by mail.

“When you get mail from your bank or credit union, it can easily be an offer of a solicitation for insurance or a credit card. But it could also be a statement letting you know there are new fees or new terms and conditions. So it’s a good idea to take a look at those things,” Ford said.

He said you may be able to get fees reduced or done away with by simply going to your bank and asking.

Low Income Housing Tax Credit Could Go Away

The Low Income Housing tax credit is one of many that may be capped if the legislature follows the recommendations of the state’s tax credit review commission.

The state put $176 million toward the Low Income Housing tax credit last year, which is the second highest allotment of all tax credits. Tom Sullivan with the Affordable Housing Coalition said he realizes that puts the credit on the chopping block, but said his group is trying to convince legislators it’s different from other credits.

“The Low Income Housing tax credit is unique in that it provides both the social benefit and an economic benefit. So in addition to providing jobs and generating a lot of tax revenue for the state of Missouri, it also provides housing which of course is badly needed these days,” Sullivan said.

Sullivan thinks there is support in the state House. The tax credit review commission recommends the legislature restructure and cap the low income housing tax credit.

Marion County Depputies Say they Foiled an Escape Attempt

Authorities say a man awaiting trial on nearly two dozen charges in Adair county was trying to escape from a cell in Marion County. In a news release, the Marion County Missouri Sheriff’s Office says 47-year-old William Fitzpatrick was found in his cell Monday morning with what deputies call evidence of an escape attempt. Some blocks were also found lying outside the perimeter of the jail. Fitzpatrick is in the Marion County jail awaiting trial on stealing charges. He also faces 19 counts in Adair County, including 11 felonies related to a string of thefts from several businesses in Kirksville.

58 Thousand Pounds of Food Distribution

Food pantries throughout Missouri were the recipients of more than 58 thousand pounds of produce that DOC inmates grew in 2010.
Some 24 thousand pounds went to people from the Jefferson City Correctional Center. Southeast Correctional Center in Charleston donated 4,425 pounds of produce this year. Northeast Correctional Center in Bowling Green donated 7,323 pounds of produce. The produce is grown at 18 of the 21
correctional centers throughout the state as part of the DOC’s Restorative Justice Program. The produce included: tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchini, yellow squash, butternut squash, cucumbers, carrots, green beans, cantaloupe and watermelon.
Offenders who help with the food plots receive Restorative Justice hours.

Watch Out for Gift Cards

Did you get a gift card or two for Christmas?

That gift card may contain fees that you’re unaware of. The Attorney General’s consumer affairs director, Doug Ommen, says the issuer of a gift card has to tell you about any fees that might come off the value of that card. He said on the upside, that the cards themselves have no limit to how much money can be put on them.

Ommen said, “I’m not aware of any. Certainly, I think, there are probably some limitations in terms of the risk that would be associated with buying a large gift card for a large amount of money, but no, I’m not aware of any limitations on the size of a gift card.”

Ommen said both the giver and the receiver of the gift card need to pay close attention to the fine print so they know how much is actually on the card to spend.

Fatal Crash Monday Evening in Linn County

An accident yesterday in Linn county killed a Brookfield man and injured two others in his vehicle. Missouri State Highway Patrol reports indicate 27-year old Christopher Cates was the driver of a 1997 Chevrolet that lost control on a partially ice-covered Linn County Route P late last night. Troopers say Cates went off the right side of the road and was thrown from the vehicle when it hit a utility pole. He died at the scene. 26-year old Stephanie Cates, Christopher’s wife, suffered only minor injuries and was taken by ambulance to Pershing Memorial Hospital. in Brookfield. 28-year old Scott Warner of Marceline was also a passenger in the car. He suffered moderate injury according to troopers and was taken to Pershing Memorial by ambulance.

Tree Drop Off is Now!

Time to drop off the trees!

Yes, yes it is. Its December 28th and you don’t want that Christmas tree sitting around until Groundhog’s Day do you? Well, its time to get rid of it! The City of Kirksville’s Public Works Department is again offering a free way for you to dispose of your trees. Drop then off at the City parking lot at the corner of Main and Missouri Streets thru January 7th, but only within the marked area of the parking lot. Be sure to take off all the lights and decorations since you’ll want them for next year’s tree. For more, call the Public Works Department.

Loss of Congressional Seat Could Hurt

Missouri Democrats and Republicans alike have voiced their disappointment that the state will be losing one of its Congressional seats. But a Missouri State University Political Science professor downplays the impact this will have on the state’s political clout.

The latest U.S. Census numbers have determined Missouri’s nine congressional seats will become eight in the year 2012. Missouri State University political science professor Dr. George Connor says this is important; but not a political death knell.

“I think it’s less of an impact on clout than people believe right now. I mean we obviously lose a vote in the Electoral College. The first question is, how often is that going to make a difference? Historically speaking, in the United States, it doesn’t happen very often. So I’m not sure if that by itself is all that significant. The loss of a House seat also has to be taken into consideration with respect to the Senate. We still have two Senators still, essentially, giving us even clout… So no matter what happens on the House side, we still have a full voice in the United States Senate,” Connor said.

Connor joins other in speculating that the St. Louis area will take the hit in losing one of its three seats, specifically Russ Carnahan’s District 3 seat. So people in those areas might notice more of a change than the state as a whole will.