Fire Protection District hires new employee

The Boone County Fire Protection District has rehired a former employee to help handle the workload created by the resignation of former Assistant Fire Chief Sharon Curry. The Fire Protection District board asked Chief Steve Paulsell to hire Sawna Scholl, a former office worker in charge of bookkeeping, as his executive assistant.

Franklin comfortable with setup role in Cards’ bullpen

ST. LOUIS — Ryan Franklin has found his comfort zone. After working most of his first five seasons as a starter with Seattle, the right-hander spent last season with Philadelphia and Cincinnati as a reliever. Both the Phillies and the Reds bounced him around in various roles and he said he never felt settled with either team.

Full Steam Ahead

Club organizes early run

The Columbia Multisport Club will hold its annual Break the Record Run at 5:30 a.m. today. The run/walk will begin at the MKT Trail access point off Forum Boulevard. The event is free and open to the public. All levels of runners and walkers are welcome. Participants can choose from several distances and paces. Anyone who participates in the run/walk will be entered in a drawing for a new pair of shoes.

Fix political system: Limit campaign money

Some people insist that it will take a major tragedy to unite Americans because we’re divided by so many issues in so many ways. I hope that’s not true. It would be good if we could unite around a good idea. I believe if we could get a law passed making it illegal for candidates running for national office to accept or spend more than $50,000 for a single political campaign we could begin to repair the damage caused by the political divisiveness. For one thing, this would make it totally unnecessary for candidates to have to sell their souls to lobbyists in order to get elected.

University President

Young scholars gather

Three hundred and thirty of Missouri’s brightest students have convened at MU to participate in the 23rd Annual Missouri Scholars Academy. “It’s a teacher’s paradise,” said Lou Jobst, who has taught at the academy since 1985. “I know, it almost sounds too good to be true.”

Two-day festival to showcase blues, BBQ

An estimated 35,000 to 40,000 people will gather in downtown Columbia on Sept. 7 and 8 to listen to Grammy Award-winning musicians and to watch nearly 50 barbecue teams compete for $15,000 in prize money.

It’s all part of the two-day Roots ‘n’ Blues ‘n’ BBQ Festival sponsored by Boone County National Bank, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary.

Police STAR team gets new name

The STAR team was established after a series of incidents in which three suspects, two citizens and three police officers were injured, according to the Columbia Police Department’s Web site. Now, 31 years later, the STAR team has been renamed the Special Weapons and Tactics team to comply with the Department of Homeland Security’s classification for civilian police teams.

Grant will bring animals to classrooms

The Critters Program is one of several programs that will receive money from the Columbia Public Schools Foundation for the coming school year. The foundation announced Monday it is putting almost $43,600 toward classroom enhancements such as the animals, geography equipment for secondary classrooms, SMART boards, or interactive white boards, for math classes and an interactive program for English language learners.

Columbia man withdraws guilty plea, requests trial

Less than a month ago, a Columbia man pleaded guilty to killing a drinking buddy while they were fighting in November. Since then, he’s decided he’s not so guilty after all.

UM official follows Floyd to new job

The University of Missouri System’s vice president for research and economic development will join former UM System President Elson Floyd at Washington State University.

Math classes get coaches

Fourteen full-time math coaches will be added to the Columbia Public School District next year after the school board approved the $164 million budget Monday night.

Road tax initiative wants for direction

JEFFERSON CITY — State transportation leaders would like to ask voters to raise taxes next year. But so far, they can’t agree on what taxes to raise, what projects to fund and who should head up the effort.

Seniors in service

Dale Sechler is in his 80s and doesn’t have much time to waste, especially on Wednesdays. He’s got deliveries to make.By 10:30 a.m., volunteers’ conversation and laughter makes a small room between the loading docks and the kitchen of Truman Veterans Hospital seem even smaller. This is the office of Meals on Wheels, where volunteers eat bagels and wait for the food they will bring to home-bound seniors to be ready.

Residents list merits of paving Wilhite Road

Wilhite Road serves as a connector between routes E and J in northwestern Boone County, about halfway between Columbia and Harrisburg. Because of its collector status and its traffic count of at least 250 cars per day, it meets county standards for some sort of improvement.

Bill could prohibit disclosing executioner’s identity

A bill awaiting Gov. Matt Blunt’s signature would make it illegal to reveal the name of an executioner.

The legislation, which passed the General Assembly last month, would allow any member of an execution team to sue for damages if their identities are disclosed without the consent of the director of the Missouri Department of Corrections.