LETTER: Read responds to Hoppe's accusations

Sarah Read suggests that Barbara Hoppe is misrepresenting the facts about the Crosscreek Development mediation.

TODAY'S QUESTION: What concerns do you have about the proposed $120 million school bond issue?

Debate about the bond issue concerns future funding if the issue passes and overcrowding in schools if it doesn't pass. The measure is before voters in the April 6 election.

Nearly 1,000 census workers will hit the streets this month

Starting in the third week of April, workers for the 2010 U.S. Census will search for the homes of residents who did not fill out their census forms.

COLUMN: 'Conspicuous' cameras mean criminals know where they are

Money for surveillance cameras could be better spent on attracting businesses or improving public transportation.

Survey suggests growth ahead for Midwest economy

The overall business conditions index for the Mid-America region hit its highest level since May 2006, and the index remained well above the growth neutral score of 50. The March index hit 64.3, outpacing February's 61.

Midwest economy: A state-by-state glance for March

Here are the results of a survey done by the Creighton Economic Forecasting Group to gauge conditions of businesses in the Midwest.

Whitt hopes to get the most from students

Now finishing his first year on the Columbia School Board, Whitt said closing the academic achievement gap and providing adequate physical facilities are two key goals.

LETTER: Jerry Wade has firsthand knowledge needed for governance

Working to revise the territorial agreement between the city and Boone County Fire Protection District is one example of Wade's skill at governing and mediation.

Census workers hope to be part of history

The stories of five workers for the 2010 U.S. Census, their journeys of counting and how they came to their current positions.

Columbia City Council candidates offer ideas on city revenue

Candidates for mayor and two seats on the Columbia City Council have different views on how the city can either find new revenue or tighten its budget to make ends meet.

Surveillance camera opponents to watch '1984'

The Blue Note will host members of Keep Columbia Free and candidates for council seats for a viewing of the movie that depicts a totalitarian society. Keep Columbia Free is against Proposition 1, which proposes surveillance cameras for downtown Columbia.

Missouri to close mental health hospital in Nevada

As a cost-saving measure, the Missouri Department of Mental Health introduced plans to close the Nevada Habilitation Center by 2010. The closure would result in patient transfer and the elimination of 50 jobs.

Missouri House rejects bill to name historical dog

The Missouri House of Representatives rejected a bill that would have named Seaman, the Newfoundland dog that accompanied explorers Lewis and Clark, as the state historical dog. Although the men started their journey in St. Louis, it was not certain among lawmakers whether the dog was ever in Missouri.

To scientists, laughter is no joke — it's serious

You may laugh at a prank on April Fools' Day. But surprisingly, only 10 to 15 percent of laughter is the result of someone making a joke, said Baltimore neuroscientist Robert Provine, who has studied laughter for decades. Laughter is mostly about social responses rather than reaction to a joke.

Missouri GOP keeps distance from spouses' House race

John Fischer has filed as a Republican to run against his wife, Rep. Linda Fischer, D-Bonne Terre, and Missouri Republican leaders said they are staying away from the contest between the couple.

Missouri governor taps MSU president as new adviser

Mike Nietzel, who served five years as Missouri State University's president and announced last fall he would step down sometime this year, was tapped by Gov. Jay Nixon to be his top adviser on higher education and work force readiness.

Catholic church takes aim at media over abuse scandals

Catholic cardinals used their Holy Thursday sermons to defend the pope against what they see as attacks on the church by the world media. The relationship between the church and the media has become increasingly bitter as the sex abuse scandal involving priests buffeting the 1 billion-member church has touched the pontiff himself.

New mileage rules: Pay more for cars, less at pump

The new standards call for a 35.5 miles-per-gallon average within six years, up nearly 10 mpg from now. The heads of the Transportation Department and Environmental Protection Agency said car owners would save more than $3,000 over the lives of their vehicles through better gas mileage.

Animal activist floods Missouri lawmakers' inboxes; they retaliate

With a bill that would open the first horse slaughterhouse in Missouri on the table, activist Brenda Shoss and her advocacy group Kinship Circle sent hundreds of e-mails to representatives in the Missouri House, urging them to vote against the bill. The bill was passed in the House on Thursday.

Google has censorship balancing act outside China

The censorship demands often thrust Google into a tricky balancing act. Its pursuit of higher profits from international markets has entangled the company in vastly different cultures and laws that conflict with its idealistic crusade to make the world's information "universally accessible." Even as it censors some information, Google says it's fighting to ensure that the Web's most popular gateway doesn't also become the Web's main muzzle.