Mo. House candidate proposes flat tax

Ed Robb, an economics expert, is the only candidate for state representative in Boone County this election who is making an issue of Missouri’s complicated tax structure.

With simplification as his ultimate goal, Robb, the Republican candidate for state representative in the 24th District, suggests several changes to the state tax code.

Education tops forum

Education was star of the show Tuesday night as a small but energetic crowd gathered at the NAACP’s last political forum to hear candidates for Missouri representative and Senate seats make their final pledges this election season.

Mary Ratliff, president of Columbia’s NAACP branch, said school funding and quality of learning are issues of particular importance to African Americans.

Ghosts of Columbia’s past haunt college halls

When venturing into many buildings in Columbia, a chill may creep up the spine. The dark atmosphere seems to envelop and thoughts begin to race.

Columbia’s most legendary ghost is Sarah June Wheeler, known for her forbidden love for Cpl. Isaac Johnson.

A cure for flu fears

After a bad case of the flu a few years back, Helen Givens, 68, wanted to be sure she got vaccinated this year. On Tuesday, after weeks of trying amid a nationwide vaccine shortage, she finally got her chance.

Givens joined more than 300 other seniors, pregnant women and other high-risk patients at Columbia’s first flu clinic of the season at the Health Connection, a branch of MU Healthcare.

Med school rumor resurfaces

Although the possibility of the MU School of Medicine being moved to Kansas City was dismissed by curators and UM system President Elson Floyd more than a year ago, the topic has risen again in a local campaign.

Chuck Graham, the Democratic candidate for 19th District state senator, typically introduces himself at forums as a candidate who has stood strong against “billion-dollar interests in Kansas City who have tried to steal our medical school.” He promises to “kill” the nomination of any curator who supports the move and to fight against possible future proposals.

Campaign appearances keep candidates busy

After sitting front and center for a Bible-thumping Kansas City church service on the first Sunday in October, Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Bekki Cook was shuttled by a handler to a nearby fast-food restaurant.

They weren’t stopping for hamburgers. It was more like a costume change.

Seeking the perfect costume

Halloween might have an interesting history, but nowadays the costume receives all the attention.

Children and adults spend time and money planning for the big night when they will dress up as someone else. All of these resources spent on one outfit for one night make sense to Gotcha owner Aaro Froese, who says, “It’s one of the few holidays you actually get to spend money on yourself.”

Satellite health clinic proposed for Salisbury

When a community health center closed in Salisbury last year, residents in the rural town 45 miles northwest of Columbia wondered how one doctor would be able to serve 1,726 people.

Now, more than a year later, they might finally get some relief.

Hickman alumnus visits from China

Peter Hessler recalls driving through a blizzard in China: Looking out his car window, he saw truckers trying to thaw out their fuel lines with lighted flares.

“There’s a sense of adventure living in China,” he told an engaged English class at Hickman High School. Hessler, who graduated from Hickman in 1988, spoke at his alma mater on Tuesday about the importance of traveling to learn first-hand about different cultures rather than just reading about foreign lands in textbooks.

Is Boston’s curse reversed?

ST. LOUIS — Get ready, Boston. There’s no other outcome now.

The Red Sox will either win the World Series or add another historic collapse to their legend.

Schools observe Red Ribbon Week

Hickman and Rock Bridge High Schools are currently observing Red Ribbon “Reality” Week.

The two schools boast programs all week that encourage responsible behavior, especially among teenagers.

Council gives clerk, city manager raises

City Manager Ray Beck and City Clerk Sheela Amin each received raises Monday night after members of the Columbia City Council gave them high marks in an annual review.

Council members raised Beck’s annual salary by 6.5 percent to $137,425 and Amin’s by 7.5 percent to $43,056, Mayor Darwin Hindman said in a release.

Learning from his loss

Inside Blake Tekotte’s Columbia living room, the Hickman High School senior is sprawled out in a blue leather chair on a Sunday afternoon. He is draped in a Hickman baseball T-shirt and purple Hickman shorts. The New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys play on a TV in the corner, but the volume is turned down, making the game barely audible.

His right leg, a mess of ace bandages and metal rods, is propped up onto a footrest.

Recruiters, foes try to keep up with Thorpe

Demond Thorpe clearly remembers the first time he received a letter from a college recruiter.

With several teammates gathered around him before a practice last season, coach A.J. Ofodile approached Thorpe with an envelope.

Equipment failure knocks KMIZ off air

A malfunctioning analog transmitter at KMIZ/ABC 17 has left many viewers without a signal since Sunday.

Engineers at KMIZ are working to correct the problem and hope to have it fixed as soon as possible, said Randy Wright, KMIZ-TV vice president and general manager.

Missouri foes start to mimic Smith’s style

Missouri quarterback Brad Smith developed into a Heisman Trophy contender with two seasons of dazzling runs through the heart of defenses.

On Saturday, however, it was Oklahoma State quarterback Donovan Woods who did damage running through the Missouri defense. He faked a handoff to Cowboys running back Vernand Morency and headed in the opposite direction. That counter play is a staple of the Tigers’ offense.

Giuliani to stump on Blunt’s behalf

Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani will appear at a campaign rally for Republican gubernatorial candidate Matt Blunt at 3 p.m. today at the Holiday Inn Select Executive Center, 2200 I-70 Drive S.W.

“I think (Giuliani) is going to talk about strong leadership and how important strong leadership is in managing a large state,” said John Hancock, a spokesman for the Blunt campaign.

Cougars crush another conference foe

Columbia College defeated American Midwest Conference rival Hannibal-LaGrange on Tuesday, 30-12, 30-9 and 30-8.

Doris Wafwafwa finished with 15 kills, seven digs and three blocks. Shana Aubrey added 12 kills, six digs and five aces. The team totaled 16 service aces on the night.

Cloudy sky may fog eclipse

Although tonight’s total lunar eclipse will occur at a time when most Missourians will be awake, prospects are dim for watching the moon pass through Earth’s shadow.

The forecast is calling for cloudy skies tonight.

Bruins pounce on Jaguars

Rock Bridge’s quick offense made the Fort Zumwalt West Jaguars look anything but catlike.

The Bruins beat the Jaguars 23-25, 25-21, 25-15 Tuesday night at Hickman. The Bruins advance to the semifinals of the Class 4 District 8 tournament, where they will face Hickman at 5:30 p.m. Thursday.