Political impact of tax votes questioned

JEFFERSON CITY — With over 100 school districts asking their residents to approve increased taxation Tuesday, the public school funding debate could be significantly altered.

Some state lawmakers have chosen to blame the Foundation Formula — the calculation that determines aid for public schools across the state — for putting schools in their current predicaments.

Six-run ninth boosts Royals

KANSAS CITY – Carlos Beltran and Mendy Lopez made sure Opening Day won’t be one Kansas City fans will soon forget.

With the Royals trailing 7-3 entering the bottom of the ninth, Lopez hit a tying three-run home run, and Beltran hit a winning two-run blast as Kansas City defeated the Chicago White Sox 9-7 on Monday at Kauffman Stadium.

Tigers’ offensive line improving

There isn’t as much fanfare. There isn’t as much name recognition.

That hasn’t stopped junior Tony Palmer, a weakside guard, from talking big about Missouri’s offensive line.

School funding up in new budget

JEFFERSON CITY — Weeks later than usual, the Missouri House could begin action today on a state budget that rejects the governor’s proposals and has few substantial changes from the current year’s budget.

The almost $18.5 billion budget was passed out of the House Budget Committee on Monday on a near-partisan vote. The University of Missouri system would receive the same amount that it was appropriated for the current year.

Bush brings the heat for Opening Day

ST. LOUIS – There was no umpire behind the plate to call it, but it was a strike. No doubt about it.

President Bush strode confidently to the Busch Stadium pitcher’s mound, waving to the crowd all the way and taking care not to step on the first base line, in keeping with an old baseball superstition, and wasted no time throwing a strike over the inside corner.

Kewps’ attack routs Helias

Late in Hickman’s game against Helias, Kewpies goalie Bess Frissel-Durley caught the ball after a long clear by the Crusaders.

It was the first time a Hickman keeper touched the ball in the second half and one of three times in the game.

Farmers reap appreciation

Like many farmers, Ron Flatt has been through depressed commodity prices, the farm crisis of the 1980s and droughts. While many of his Boone County neighbors chose to get out of the business, Flatt was a pioneer for innovations in agriculture to improve his efficiency and increase returns.

Flatt and his family were awarded for their persistence when they were named Boone County Chamber of Commerce Agriculturalists of the Year.

City Council passes overhaul of bus routes

The Columbia City Council voted Monday night to accept proposed changes to the city’s bus routes.

The changes, suggested by Columbia Transit, are intended to provide better service to bus riders, improve on-time arrivals and attract more residents to use public transportation.

Pope wins Columbia Classic

Jeff Pope didn’t need the round of his life to beat some of the best golfers in the state in Monday’s Columbia Classic. He needed two consistent rounds.

Pope, a Rock Bridge senior, shot a 1-over-par 71 to win the Columbia Classic at A.L. Gustin Golf Course. Pope shot a 35 and a 36 despite missing seven birdie putts, including five on his last nine holes.

Accountability in tax-credit program sought

When Trent Stober started a business in Columbia two years ago, he might not have picked a small office building near Business Loop 70 to house his water-quality analysis firm, MEC Water Resources. But the state was offering a powerful incentive.

Missouri’s Rebuilding Communities tax credit program, aimed at bringing more high-tech firms to economically depressed areas, allowed him to write off 40 percent of the cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of scientific equipment.

MAP tests begin amidst anxiety

On a Saturday morning in February, third-grader Caitie Howard sat outside the school library finishing a fruit smoothie. She swung her legs while chatting about theater class and how her tongue was turning red from the drink. When she started talking about school, she turned serious.

“We have a big MAP test to do in April,” Caitie said, “and I’m scared about it.”

E-fficient applications

The days of mailing a resume to a prospective employer are waning, but that doesn’t mean job seekers can forget all the resume-writing guidelines from the past. Rather, it means there is a whole new set of rules to learn.

Now, when someone sends a resume in to a company, they can expect it to be put into a computer immediately. Many employers are asking that candidates only send in materials electronically, usually via e-mail or through a Web site, and even companies that do accept printed resumes will often scan them into large databases before reading them.

Eclectic shop has wine, spirits for every taste

Joe’s Wine and Spirits, appropriately located at 2001 Corona St., offers customers more than Mexican beer. The store, which opened in March in the Village of Cherry Hill, includes an extensive selection of wine, liquor and beer.

After running the wine and spirits department at Nowell’s for 10 years, Joe Strawn decided to open his own store in the Village because of the large number of homes near the store and the rapid growth of the surrounding area.

Rezoning for Bass Pro approved by council

The Columbia City Council had several issues on the docket Monday evening, including the proposed change in bus routes. In other business at the meeting, the council:

n Approved the rezoning of 27 acres south of Vandiver Drive and west of U.S. 63 for the construction of a Bass Pro Shops retail store, a restaurant and a convenience store. The request, which is part of the larger Bass Pro in the Centerstate Crossings Development plan, was made by Centerstate Properties LLC. The land will be rezoned from O-P, planned office, and M-1, general industrial, to C-P, planned business.

Trial for wall owner pushed to mid-June

Marcus Floyd, the owner of a climbing wall from which a 22-year-old Jefferson City woman fell to her death last July, won’t stand trial until mid-June.

Citing the need to gather more information and continue interviewing witnesses — a process known as discovery — Boone County prosecuting attorney Kevin Crane and Dave Eblen, a representative of the law firm that is representing Floyd, asked Circuit Court Judge Gene Hamilton to postpone the trial date, originally scheduled for May 4. Hamilton granted the request for a continuance and set June 15 as the new date.