News

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President-elect Donald Trump plans to pick former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue to lead the Agriculture Department, a transition official and a source close to the process confirmed to NPR.

Trump is expected to make a formal announcement on Thursday, ending a months-long process that left Agriculture Secretary as the final Cabinet post to be filled.

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back Columbia Public Schools teachers MELANIE KNOCKE and REX BELTZ! Still fresh off their trip aboard NASA's 'Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy', or SOFIA, Melanie and Rex will share their story once more at the kickoff to the 2017 Saturday Morning Science series January 28th at the Bond Life Sciences Center in Columbia. Today they talk about just what is "infrared astronomy" - watch! January 19, 2017

St. Louis Arch
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There's new life for a plan to have St. Louis taxpayers help fund a new downtown soccer stadium.

Eight days after the public funding proposal was declared all but dead, Alderwoman Christine Ingrassia on Wednesday requested a hearing before the city Ways and Means Committee. The hearing is set for Thursday.

Ingrassia says a revised proposal would ask voters to approve about $60 million in new tax revenue for the $200 million project. The earlier plan sought $80 million from the city.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

The commissioner of Indiana's Department of Environmental Management will move to Missouri to lead the Department of Natural Resources under Gov. Eric Greitens.

Greitens announced Wednesday that Carol Comer will be the newest addition to his cabinet.

Comer worked under Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who will be sworn in Friday as vice president.

In a video posted to Greitens' Facebook and Twitter accounts, Comer touted her success in partnering Indiana' environmental department with economic organizations to promote business and investment.

Ryan Ferguson
Bridgit Bowden / KBIA

A man whose conviction in a Columbia sports editor's death was overturned after spending nearly a decade in prison is closer to seeing his civil lawsuit go to trial.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that U.S. District Judge Nanette Laughrey ruled Tuesday that six officers aren't entitled to immunity shielding them from liability in Ryan Ferguson's case.

David Shane / Flickr

Missouri's Republican-led House has pushed forward a proposal to make Missouri the 28th right-to-work state despite Democratic efforts to send the measure to a public vote.

The House voted 101-58 Wednesday to give initial approval to the bill, which would ban mandatory union fees. The bill needs another House vote before it can move to the Senate.

The legislation is likely to pass following renewed momentum from the recent inauguration of Republican Gov. Eric Greitens, who has vowed to sign the bill that his Democratic predecessor vetoed.

The world will be watching as President-elect Donald Trump takes the oath of office Friday. Among the big issues we’re keeping an eye on: what his relationship will be with journalists. We got a glimpse of it during last week’s news conference, in which he lashed out at CNN’s Jim Acosta. Is that the new normal? Also, Facebook’s newest effort to filter fake news, the ice storm that wasn’t, and 65 years of morning television. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, John Fennell and Mike McKean: Views of the News.

Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

A doctor handed Melissa Morris her first opioid prescription when she was 20 years-old. She had a cesarean section to deliver her daughter, and to relieve post-surgical pain her doctor sent her home with Percocet. On an empty stomach, she took one pill and laid down on her bed.

“I remember thinking to myself, ‘Oh my god. Is this legal? How can this feel so good?’” Morris recalls.

Today Paul Pepper visits with JOHN MURRAY, Director of the University Concert Series, about all the different shows coming to the stages of Jesse Auditorium and Missouri Theatre over the next several months! Big Broadway shows like "Annie"; an intimate tribute to The Carpenters; "Odd Squad Live" for the kids; a performance by the entire St. Louis Symphony and more are on the way - watch for details! January 18, 2017

The Missouri Supreme Court is ordering Kansas City to put a proposed minimum-wage hike to $15 an hour on the ballot.

Supreme Court judges ruled Tuesday that a vote is needed before judges can decide if a wage increase is lawful.

A group of citizens had collected enough signatures to force a vote on minimum wage in 2015. But the vote was scheduled to take place after the enactment of a new state law prohibiting higher local minimum wages from the state's minimum wage.

Missouri's minimum wage is $7.70 an hour.

Via Flickr user Gage Skidmore

The world will be watching as President-elect Donald Trump takes the oath of office Friday. Among the big issues we’re keeping an eye on: what his relationship will be with journalists. We got a glimpse of it during last week’s news conference, in which he lashed out at CNN’s Jim Acosta. Is that the new normal?

Missouri Department of Conservation

As temperatures freeze and thaw in late winter, one of the sweetest harvests awaits in the Missouri woods.  This week on Discover Nature, tap a tree, and collect a treat.


Today Paul Pepper visits with DIANA MOXON, Executive Director of Columbia Art League, about their new show that (unofficially) opens today called "Quintessence." What is 'quintessence'? Diana says this is "a show about the natural elements: fire, air, earth, water...and quintessence - the fifth element." At [3:55] NICK FOSTER, Executive Director of the Voluntary Action Center, tells us how their 'Adopt-a-Family' program went this past Christmas, as well as what to expect in 2017. Nick says the area they're looking to grow the most in is housing because, "the need is just tremendous." January 17, 2017

David Shane / Flickr

New Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens will outline his policies on jobs, ethics, public safety and education during his first State of the State address.

The Republican will speak Tuesday evening at the Capitol.

Spokesman Parker Briden says more higher-paying jobs are a priority for Greitens. He also will touch on so-called labor reform, which likely means a right-to-work law banning mandatory union dues.

Central Missouri Democrats nominated an attorney who formerly worked for the Missouri Senate to run in a special election for the 50th House District seat.

Michela Skelton will run to replace Republican state Rep. Caleb Jones, of Columbia, who resigned from the Senate to become deputy chief of staff to Gov. Eric Greitens.

Skelton was nominated Monday by the 50th District Democratic Committee.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is cutting $146 million of spending from the budget, including tens of millions of dollars to public colleges and universities.

The Republican governor said the cuts announced Monday are necessary to keep the budget in balance because of lower than expected tax revenues and rising costs in certain programs such as Medicaid.

ReginaCarter.com

For her ninth release 'Southern Comfort', jazz violinist Regina Carter researched music of American South from the early 20th century. In a recent interview with KBIA's Trevor Harris, Carter talked about her early Detroit influences, the value of knowing your musical history and the timelessness of Ella Fitzgerald. Carter brings her 'Simply Ella' program to Columbia on Monday, January 23.

Today Paul Pepper visits with 'MU Celebrates MLK' committee members, CAROLYN MICKLEM and FRANK SCHMIDT, about the many events happening this month that seek to recognize and honor the message of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The first such event is TODAY at Ragtag Cinema in downtown Columbia; next week, scholar and activist Angela Davis will be speaking at Missouri Theatre - watch for details! January 16, 2017

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are hoping to expand services to Missouri customers under proposed statewide regulations for the app-based companies.

The proposal requires background checks for drivers, vehicle inspections and includes a rider nondiscrimination policy.

The bill has largely drawn bipartisan support, but some are concerned that the statewide regulations don't go far enough to ensure safety. The proposal also includes a provision saying drivers don't have to pay local taxes.

Mike Krebs/Missourian

The National Weather Service has issued an ice storm warning for nearly all of Missouri. As precipitation began Friday morning, KOMU8 reporters in Jefferson City and Columbia updated KBIA on conditions. 


Missouri State Highway Patrol

Freezing rain is causing numerous accidents in Missouri, including one fatal wreck.

Missouri State Highway Patrol spokesman Al Nothum says a sport utility vehicle veered off of Interstate 55 near Festus, south of St. Louis, on Friday morning. The SUV struck a tree, killing the driver. No other information has been released, but Nothum says a slick roadway is the suspected cause.

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back NANETTE WARD, a volunteer with Central Missouri Stop Human Trafficking Coalition. January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and in Missouri, it's also Sex Trafficking Awareness Month. To honor those affected, the Coalition is hosting an event featuring author/activist Christine McDonald at the Columbia Public Library January 26th. Watch for details! January 13, 2017

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

An attorney for a man sentenced to 25 years in prison for rape is arguing that a Missouri law allowing sexually violent predators to be indefinitely committed to mental institutions is unconstitutional.

The Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments Thursday from attorneys for Jay Nelson and the state.

Nelson was convicted of rape in 1989. While in prison, he was accused of sexually assaulting female guards.

David Shane / Flickr

Missouri's Republican House budget leader says without more cuts the state is expected to end the fiscal year about $40 million in the hole.

Budget Committee Chairman Scott Fitzpatrick told lawmakers Thursday the difference between how much money the state has and its obligations is a problem.

Former Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon already cut more than $200 million in spending this fiscal year.

Republican Gov. Eric Greitens has said he plans more cuts, although he hasn't said how much or what he'll ax. Greitens took office Monday.

Many local schools are closed and officials are bracing for emergency situations as an ice storm in the forecast could cause dangerous road conditions and downed trees and power lines. 

The National Weather Service has issued an ice storm warning for nearly all of Missouri, which will begin at 9 a.m. this morning and last until noon on Sunday. NOAA’s updated warning this morning calls for one quarter to one half inch of ice  this weekend. Only the very most northern and southern parts of the state are not under the warning.

AP Photo

The shooting death of Michael Brown and the ensuing riots in Ferguson, Mo. altered the course of Tony Messenger's career. 

Along with colleague Kevin Horrigan, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial writer was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2015.  He's since become a metro columnist for the newspaper and continued to paint an unflinching portrait of race relations in St. Louis.  On this special edition of Global Journalist, Messenger speaks with guest host Joshua Kranzberg about his career and his award-winning coverage of St. Louis's racial divisions.


Allison Vaughn

By positioning themselves in the area's best birding areas, Allison Vaughn and Bill Mees were able to spot and count numerous bird species. Along with their fellow Columbia Audubon Society members, the duo took part in the Christmas Bird Count on December 22, 2016. Vaughn and Mees were guests on this week's Thinking Out Loud talking with KBIA's Trevor Harris about the annual count and what they saw.


Missouri's new Republican governor has named a partner at a global management consulting firm as the state's chief operating officer.

pills
Pink Sherbert Photography / Flickr

The U.S. Department of Justice says Missouri counties are now eligible to receive federal funds for prescription drug monitoring programs to combat the opioid epidemic.

Today Paul Pepper visits with MAR DOERING, DVM, All Paws Medical & Behavioral Center, about making New Year's resolutions for your pet. One resolution Mar expands on is better communication. She says, "understand where your pet is coming from (dog or cat or guinea pig or whatever) and try and communicate on their level...they get what we're feeling more than what we're saying." January 12, 2017

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