Sapp plan closer to vote

The Columbia City Council moved a step closer Monday night to approving what would be the largest voluntary annexation in the city’s history.

The council voted to formally introduce a bill on Billy Sapp’s proposed 805-acre development, paving the way for a final vote on June 20. The vote followed a public hearing that included impassioned calls for funding of road work to improve safety on Route WW, which would connect the proposed development to the rest of the city.

Court bolsters federal pot laws

Columbia’s marijuana ordinances could come under fire from the federal government because of Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling on medical marijuana.

In the case Gonzales v. Raich, the court ruled in a 6-3 decision that federal laws prohibiting the use of marijuana under any circumstance override laws that states or cities may have passed.

Columbia ordinance stands

Heather De Mian does not smoke marijuana to fit in with the cool crowd or get high on weekends. She uses marijuana to control her nausea and pain.

“I can’t even get high,” she said. “I have been on opiate (painkiller) since I was 10 years old.”

After war, a heightened sense of thankfulness

When Andrea Hoffelt, 27, found out her husband Zak’s medical residency meant a sudden move to Columbia, she knew what to expect. Growing up in Vermillion, S.D., home of the state’s flagship university, life in a college town was nothing new. She could handle the skateboarding teens on downtown sidewalks, traffic jams on football weekends and other vagaries of life in a college town. Far more difficult was getting used to the eternal calm of the suburbs without mortar shells flying over her head. “When the deployment was over, it felt as though a tornado had picked me up, spun ...

The gift of a garden

Preparing the earth is a labor of love for gardeners in the Community Garden Coalition. For Zackary Riley, it’s also a way to give back to someone who gave a lot to him: his late girlfriend, Autumn Cox.

Earlier in the spring, Riley was moved to donate a strip of land on Seventh Street and 10 acres near the Lake of the Woods, east of Columbia, to the coalition.

House blaze caused by storm

Sunday morning’s storm started a fire that caused about $30,000 in damage when lightning struck the house on Glenn Wesley Court.

Homeowners Dwayne and Lois Baskett awoke about 3 a.m. to a loud “thump” that activated their bedroom fire alarm. The alarm sounded for a few seconds and then stopped. While investigating, Dwayne smelled smoke in an upstairs computer room above the garage.

Woman charged with arson

A woman suspected of trying to set fire to her ex-boyfriend’s third-floor apartment and two cars was arrested Friday by Columbia police.

The cars belong to the ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend.

Career Center to get more money

Columbia’s Board of Education wants to give the district’s Career Center $100,000 in additional money to expand a computer-aided drafting and design program. The expansion would also include the hiring of a second full-time instructor.

The center, which provides career technical training to high school students and adults, had requested $4,660,825 for the 2005-06 fiscal year. But after seeing an enrollment increase for the second year in a row, Arden Boyer-Stephens, the center’s director, asked for more money.

Center makes splash

Early in the afternoon Monday, Tiger Grotto was empty. Four lifeguards sat around its perimeter on opening day for the Mizzou Aquatics Center, watching water as it crashed from the waterfall, flowed through the lazy river, and swirled in the massive vortex.

The pool didn’t stay empty for long.

Mavs cheer first win

The Mavericks defeated the Gateway Grizzlies 12-7 on Monday night.

The victory absolved Mid-Missouri of the dubious honor it carried into the game: the Frontier League’s lone winless team.

Fishing clinic reels in children

Betty Cook Rottmann has a collection of bass and crappie mounted in a display case on the wall above her desk. In the corner of the case, there is a snapshot of her late husband Leroy Rottmann proudly holding a prize catch.

“All his life, fishing was his hobby,” Cook Rottmann said. “He especially loved teaching children to fish. It’s just part of our family history.”

This time, Morris beats Red Sox

ST. LOUIS — Matt Morris gets excited for every start, it’s just his nature. Facing the Boston Red Sox got him really pumped up, even if it wasn’t the World Series.

Morris improved to 7-0 with his first complete game of the season and contributed a squeeze bunt to help St. Louis beat Boston 7-1 on Monday night in the teams’ first meeting since last fall, when the Red Sox swept the Cardinals for their first World Series championship since 1918.

Top draw for Cougars benefit

Parents often make sacrifices for their children. Once in a while, they get the chance to play golf for them.

Gary Mills said that he participated in the Cougar Club and Scholarship Fund Golf Tournament to support his son, Tanner, a Rock Bridge graduate who will play soccer for Columbia College next fall.

Chance for rejuvenation

KANSAS CITY — For one day at least, the budget-conscious Kansas City Royals are ready to open their checkbook and spend money with the big boys.

Having the No. 2 overall pick in today’s baseball draft provides a rare opportunity to invigorate the team’s youth-based rebuilding program with a player with extraordinary ability. Unlike some years, the Royals insist that talent, and not the ability to sign the player, will be their guide.

Summer fun eases pain of icy winters

The big day finally came, and I took a ride out to the old fishing hole to check it out. Within a few moments, the gently rippling water cast its spell on me, and I hurried back home to begin the annual ritual. Time to pull out the rods and reels, check the lines and tackle box and start making plans for the highlight of the season — the first fishing trip. I do this every year, and it never fails to add the touch of excitement that embellishes the substance of my great expectations for the summer.