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 State officials say Missouri's Medicaid program will save an estimated $4.2 million in fiscal year 2016 by using a newer, cheaper drug to treat hepatitis C.

Tesla being unloaded from a trailer
Steve Jurvetson / Flickr

The Missouri Automobile Dealers Association is suing the state revenue department for allowing an electric car maker to sell directly to customers.

The car dealers filed a lawsuit Thursday in Cole County Circuit Court claiming Missouri violated state law by licensing California-based Tesla Motors as a franchise.

Jacob Steimer/Missouri Business Alert

At the end of 2014, many Missouri United Way chapters came up short on their fundraising goals. Local charities felt the effects of low fundraising and different funding initiatives at the Heart of Missouri United Way in Columbia. Missouri Business Alert's Jacob Steimer reports on the impact that funding and program changes have had on mid-Missouri charities.

Chris Koster / Missouri Attorney General's Office

Tyson Foods Inc. will pay $539,000 for a chemical spill that killed more than 100,000 fish and caused a southwest Missouri town's wastewater treatment system to fail.

The settlement was announced Tuesday by Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster, who sued the company last June.

Koster says that last May, Tyson discharged wastewater that contained an acidic animal feed supplement from its Aurora facility, eventually causing Monett's wastewater treatment system to fail and contaminating Clear Creek in Barry County.

The Internal Revenue Service on Tuesday began accepting tax returns electronically, and paper returns will begin to be processed at the same time. In a statement, the IRS reminded taxpayers that filing electronically is the most accurate way to file a tax return and the fastest way to get a refund.

In 1973, Burton Malkiel published a very readable guide to investing called A Random Walk Down Wall Street. He didn't rest with the first edition, though. Over the past 42 years — as we've lived through bubbles and crashes, scandals and fads — Malkiel has returned more than a few times to his seminal Walk.

In fact, this year he plans to release the book's 11th edition.

If you've traveled outside the U.S. recently, or sent your U.S.-made products abroad, you've probably noticed that the dollar is getting stronger. The stronger dollar is the sign of a healthier U.S. economy, but its strength has the potential to erode growth.

There are a number of factors behind the dollar's rise, says economist Jens Nordvig, a currency expert at Nomura Securities. The main one is the health of the U.S. economy.

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Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Attorneys say an investment firm has settled a federal lawsuit accusing it of bilking investors out of $39 million in a failed effort to build an artificial sweetener plant in Moberly. 

Haiti's magnitude 7.0 earthquake of Jan. 12, 2010, left 220,000 people dead, 300,000 injured and rubble nearly everywhere.

The catastrophe also unleashed an unprecedented flood of humanitarian aid — $13.5 billion in donations and pledges, about three-quarters from donor nations and a quarter from private charity.

But today Haiti is a long, long way from realizing the bullish goal of "building back better."

In a move to cement their party's fiscal ideology, Republicans used the first vote of the new Congress to change the rules for estimating the economic consequences of major legislation.

jcarlosn / Flickr

  AAA says Missourians on average are paying the least for gas in the country and prices in Kansas are the third lowest in the U-S. 

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Missouri is the first state in more than five years to have a statewide average gas price of below $2 a gallon, and Oklahoma is expected to get there by the weekend.

Ameren Missouri

FULTON, Mo. (AP) — Federal officials are delaying a decision on issuing a 20-year extension for the Callaway County nuclear power plant.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said the decision is on hold pending an administrative hearing on an environmental group's legal challenge regarding spent fuel rod storage.

Veterans United makes substantial donation

Dec 12, 2014
Veterans United Home Loans

Veterans United Home Loans announced Thursday a $1 million dollar donation to the organization Welcome Home for the housing of Columbia's homeless veterans. The donation was made by the corporation on behalf of the employees. The former Deluxe Inn on Business Loop 70 East will be renovated into a campus with 25 on-site apartments known as Patriot Place.

Veterans United President of Strategic Operations Greg Steinhoff presented the check and says the donation is huge for supporting veterans.

Flazingo Photos/Flickr

A new ordinance to "Ban the Box" was passed with a unanimous vote by the Columbia City Council last week. The ordinance is designed to make it easier for people with prior criminal backgrounds to compete in the job market. KBIA's Ashley Reese sat in on the council meeting and has more on how the council came to their decision and what this new ordinance means for Columbia. 

breadbasketcafe.com

Bread Basket Cafe II, located on 8th Street and Elm, will be closing its doors on Saturday, December 13.

News of BBC II's closing was met with surprise and sadness from staff and regulars at the restaurant, including Server Taylor Baker.

"I am so sad. Not only is it a great place to hang out, we have kind of become a family here and even the regulars too," Baker said. "It is definitely one of my favorite places to be."

Baker said she was called in late last week for the announcement, but not given much more detail other than the date.

Plainclothes Columbia police officers have started issuing tickets to drivers with Internet ride-sharing company Uber.

KBIA file photo

Food trucks will serve customers during new hours in The North Village Arts District. The current city bill allows food trucks to operate at the Wabash Station between the hours of 9:30 p.m. and 3 a.m., but starting December 5 the temporary waiver will allow the trucks to serve customers on Friday evenings from 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. during the district's First Friday events.

Mark Risch is the owner of the CoMo Dough Pizza truck and said he is looking forward to working the events.

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Larger American Airline planes will start flying out of Columbia Regional Airport to Chicago and Dallas early next year.

"Our airport does appear to be expanding and we are very happy about that. That's been our objective and that's been the objective of the mayor and the Council all along," Airport Advisory Board member Leon Hoffsette said.

Skitterphoto/Pixabay

After the launch of CoMo Connect this summer, public transit ridership in Columbia jumped about 11 percent according to the Columbia Public Works Department. However, public transit remains a problem for the city, with long waiting times and limited evening and weekend services. Missouri Business Alert’s Tatiana Darie looks into why this is happening and what efforts are being made to improve it.

David Shane / Flickr

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri's revenues are up more than 3 percent so far this fiscal year but the state's budget chief says that's not enough to pay for all of Missouri's expenses.

Revenue figures released Tuesday show individual income tax collections are up 5.5 percent and sales tax collections increased 2.6 percent from July through November.

City Council postpones Uber ordinance vote

Dec 2, 2014
File / KBIA

The Columbia City Council decided to hold off on voting on an ordinance that would affect the ride-share service Uber, which began operation in Columbia on October 9th.

www.flymidmo.com

  Mayor Bob McDavid announced in a press conference Monday that a new Bombardier CRJ-700 jet aircraft will be facilitating the current nonstop daily routes to Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth at the Columbia Regional Airport.

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File Photo / KBIA

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — The state of Missouri is extending a program to offer no-interest loans to small businesses in and near Ferguson damaged by recent violent protests.

The office of Gov. Jay Nixon on Friday outlined a $625,000 pool of loan money for businesses damaged by looting in Ferguson, Jennings, Dellwood and other nearby cities hit by vandals after the Monday night announcement that a St. Louis County grand jury decided to not indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in Michael Brown's shooting death.

KBIA

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Demonstrators have disrupted business at a large suburban St. Louis shopping mall to protest a grand jury's decision not to indict the police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson.

At least 200 protesters gathered on one of the busiest shopping days of the year Friday at the Galleria mall in Richmond Heights, about 10 miles south of Ferguson.

by LarimdaME /Flickr Creative Commons

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — The St. Louis County chapter of the NAACP passed out Thanksgiving turkeys Thursday for those who lost jobs due to the rioting in Ferguson.

Jessica Hentoff has gone all the way to Israel to bring people of markedly different perspectives together. This summer, Hentoff, artistic and executive director of Circus Harmony, took members of her tumbling group, the St. Louis Arches, to the Middle East. There, the Arches joined with Arab and Israeli youth from the Galilee Circus, where they work and learned together, setting aside religious, political and cultural differences.

http://www.9jumpin.com.au/

  Karl Stefanovic, the anchor of Australia’s Today Show, wanted to see if anyone would notice if he wore the same blue suit for a year. No one noticed! Meanwhile, if his co-host wore the same outfit more than once a week, she got critical emails and calls from viewers. Missouri School of Journalism professors Earnest Perry, Mike McKean and Amy Simons discuss the issue.

Boonville plant to close in 2015

Nov 21, 2014

250 jobs will be eliminated at the NORDYNE Plant in Boonville, Missouri in the beginning of 2015.

An executive of the app-based ride-sharing company, unhappy with critical media coverage, suggested it should dig up personal information about journalists and make it public. Missouri School of Journalism professors Earnest Perry, Mike McKean and Amy Simons discuss the issue.

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