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8:59 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Mo. expects to save $44M through debt refinancing

Lawmakers and the Governor want to refinance $500 million in bonds.
Jacob Fenston KBIA

Missouri expects to save about $44 million this year by refinancing some of its debt at lower interest rates.

Two separate boards of state officials gave preliminary authorization this week to the bond refinancing.

That action had been anticipated for some time. Gov. Jay Nixon had proposed to refinance more than $500 million of bonds as part of the budget plan he outlined in January. Lawmakers also had calculated the savings into the budget for the 2013 fiscal year that began this past Sunday.

Weather
8:56 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Hot, dry conditions bring mixed forecast for Missouri wine producers

rustinpc flickr

Missouri winemakers are watching their grape vines carefully this summer.

A little stress can positively effect grape quality, but as wine experts are concerned this year’s heat and drought may be too much. 

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Weather
8:43 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Mo. AG reminds residents of hot weather rule

Attorney General Chris Koster
Attorney General's Office

Missouri residents are encouraged to call a state consumer hotline for help if their electricity is shut off during the current heat wave because they couldn't pay the bill.

The state's hot weather rule forbids utilities from disconnecting electrical services when temperatures are projected to be higher than 95 degrees, or the heat index is expected to exceed 100 degrees.

Temperatures above both thresholds are expected to continue through the weekend and much of the summer in the Midwest.

Sports
8:25 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Players push for longest baseball game

Baseballs
paul.hadsall flickr

A group of baseball players is battling triple-digit heat in an effort to set the world record for the longest game ever played. The 52 players will try to compete for 60 hours. The game started at 7:00 Monday morning and is scheduled to end at 7:00 Thursday night.

Money raised will benefit Backstoppers, which supports the families of fallen first responders in the St. Louis area. Organizer and player Steve Pona says they thought about postponing the game due to the extreme weather

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Education
5:15 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Kirksville R-3 approves budget

Kirksville Tigers
MSHAA

The Kirksville R-3 School board has approved its budget for the next school year. The district expects to see a reduction in state and federal funding by almost $800,000.

Despite the cut in federal funding, the district doesn’t expected to make any drastic cuts. Superintendent Pat Williams says the district had actually expected the subsidy reduction and had already started taking steps to provide cushion for the next school year.

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Politics
3:30 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Lawmakers don't like summary of Mo. ballot issues

David Shane/Flickr

Several Republicans are criticizing the ballot summaries that Missouri Democratic Secretary of State Robin Carnahan has prepared for measures dealing with health insurance and appellate judges.

The Republican-led Legislature referred both measures to the November ballot. Carnahan wrote the ballot summaries because lawmakers did not include their own.

Lawmakers who sponsored the measures say those summaries are misleading, and two GOP leaders pledged to file a lawsuit.

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Faith/Religion
12:19 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Mid-Missouri Mormons celebrate religious freedom with walk, run

Luca Arellano, Eliza Law, Nora Pusmechnikova and Quincy Brown run in front of Nick Becker and Drew Brown during the Parley P. Pratt Memorial Freedom Event.
Kellie Kotraba/ColumbiaFAVS KBIA

Columbia’s Mormon congregations celebrated religious freedom this morning and marked an event from the church’s history. 

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Agriculture
12:05 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Farmers + Engineers = Farm Hack

Carolyn Scherf, a farmhand from the Iowa City-area; Troy Washam, co-owner of a small farm near DeWitt, Iowa; and Grant Schultz, co-director of Farm Hack Iowa, stand in the University of Iowa Garden at the conclusion of the first Midwestern Farm Hack.
Clare Roth Harvest Public Media

"Hack” isn’t a word usually associated with agriculture, but that might be starting to change. A group of small farmers across the country has started to come together to pool their ideas for solutions to small-farming challenges, just like computer hackers working together to solve computer issues. They call it Farm Hack.

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Politics
9:05 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Jefferson City Fire Department wants voters to approve funding fix

Jefferson City Fire Department
JCFD Facebook Page

The Jefferson City Fire Department is asking voters to fund the plan that would purchase new equipment and trucks, cover technical upgrades, and pay for firefighter training. Captain Scott Spencer says unfortunately, a lot of the department’s equipment is getting old.

“This fire department improvement plan is for the community. It all transcends down to the end user, the taxpayer, the customer that might be relying on us for emergency medical services, which we’re going to be upgrading," said Spencer.

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Weather
8:30 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Columbia and Jefferson City fireworks shows expected to go on as planned

Fireworks on the Fourth of July
City of Columbia Parks and Recreation

There will still be fireworks displays in Columbia and Jefferson City today, despite exceptionally dry conditions lately.

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Health
8:29 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Southeast Mo. man dies from copperhead bite

Copperhead Snake
Axel.Foley Flickr

A southeast Missouri man died from a copperhead bite this past weekend. It’s only the second recorded copperhead bite fatality in the state and the first since 1965.

A copperhead bit 50-year-old Terry Brown Saturday night while he was camping  along the Current River  in southeast Missouri.

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, these cases are extremely rare.  Most snakebites occur when people try to handle snakes, or from not watching  their hands and feet.

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Politics
8:13 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Mo. GOP governor candidate gives campaign $500,000

Dave Spence
spenceforgovernor.com

Republican businessman Dave Spence has chipped in another half-million dollars to his Missouri gubernatorial campaign.

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Health & Wealth Update
7:05 am
Wed July 4, 2012

Missouri Medicaid expansion up in the air

"A victory for people all over this country whose lives will be more secure because of this law and the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold it."
whitehouse.gov

After last week's Supreme Court decision upholding most of the Affordable Care Act, President Obama declared victory. But there was one major gray cloud -- or silver lining, depending on your point of view -- leaving open the question of Missouri's participation in the expansion of Medicaid envisioned by the federal health care law.

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Weather
5:36 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

Forest Service reports progess on Mo. fires

Federal officials say two fires in southern Missouri's Mark Twain National Forest have been contained, but new ones have broken out.

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Politics
5:26 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

Mo. to get nearly $32 million from drug settlement

The Javorac Flickr

Missouri will receive nearly $32 million as its share of a nationwide settlement with British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline.

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