While the future of the formula is not completely clear, one thing is certain: Any changes will come with a price, both political and financial.
The very first line of Missouri’s foundation formula establishes a relationship between the amount of money available and the amount of money needed. It’s called the “proration factor.”
In an ideal world, that factor should be 1. In the real world, it now sits at either .82, which is the lowest estimate, or .87, which is the highest.
Confusion between Boone County government and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has delayed about 20 county maintenance projects in the past year alone.
It’s a situation that has county officials frustrated and grappling for a solution.
The first case of influenza was recently reported by the Columbia/Boone County Department of Health, but Mary Martin, public health manager for the department, said that doesn’t mean there haven’t been more cases.
“Most people that get influenza aren’t tested,” Martin said. “If people get the flu, they usually stay home and don’t go to the doctor.”
The name has changed throughout the years, but the rules haven’t. What began as “murderball” is now the fastest-growing wheelchair sport: wheelchair rugby.
Columbia’s first Wheelchair Rugby Hit Hunger Day was held Saturday at Wilson’s Total Fitness. Those who attended were asked to bring a nonperishable food item or cash donation. The proceeds benefited the Central Missouri Food Bank.
In quill-scratched ink, the original minutes of the First Baptist Church of Columbia declare the intention of 11 people to follow certain tenets.
No. 1: “We believe in our only true and living God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, and these three are one.”
Mud dots the street in front of the Rucker house in Centralia, where 9-year-old Johnny Veazey works on his messy masterpiece. He and four of his friends crowd around a patch of dirt in a grassy ditch next to the street. Some sit crossed-legged; others lie down, propped up on their elbows.
Each boy is dressed in mud. Jacob Rucker, 7, has clumps stuck to his chin. Danny Beachy, 10, has a smudge in the middle of his forehead. And Johnny’s arms look like they have been dipped up to the elbow in brownie mix. But it doesn’t matter. The boys have a job to do.
Major issues to address include tax reassessments, a special “hold-harmless” clause and the “proration factor.”
Ray Beck will continue as Columbia’s city manager for at least another year, but members of the Columbia City Council worry whether they’re paying him enough.
After giving Beck a stellar review for his performance over the past year, the council decided Wednesday night to extend his contract another year. Beck’s new salary will be $128,911, which includes a 2 percent merit increase and a 2 percent cost-of-living increase. The council also agreed to a one-time payment of $200 to defray the higher cost of medical insurance.
Since Sept. 11, 2001, Hallsville Elementary School has had a world map hanging outside the principal’s office. The map has the names and locations of 31 Hallsville residents who are in active military service around the world.
This holiday season, Hallsville is trying to make sure its more than 1,200 residents stay in touch with the city’s service members. The city is preparing care packages to send to soldiers stationed overseas, particularly in Iraq and Kosovo.
Boone County government might have to dip into reserves to get through 2004, according to a preliminary budget prepared by County Auditor June Pitchford.
This holiday season children won’t be the only ones making wish lists. Principals in the Columbia Public School District are hoping their most pressing school facility needs will be covered by a proposed $22.5 million bond issue.
In January, the school board will decide whether to put the proposal before voters on the April ballot. Deputy Superintendent Jacque Cowherd said the district’s financial adviser has determined that $22.5 million is the amount of money that could be issued without a tax increase.
In one fell swoop, a U.S. senator has done what a committee raising money for restoration of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial worked nearly a year to achieve.
U.S. Sen. Kit Bond has landed $100,000 from the Save America’s Treasures program for the King Memorial project. The Save America’s Treasures program uses grants from the National Park Service and the National Endowment for the Arts to preserve national monuments and other places of interest.
Although she doesn’t have much to give besides her time, 78-year-old Margaret Hicks volunteers year-round for the New Life Evangelistic Center in Columbia.
Some Missouri farm and livestock groups are confident their members will profit from the Free Trade Area of the Americas trading bloc, but the cheap costs of production in Central and South America have others worried that the playing field won’t be level for Missouri farmers.
Negotiations end today in Miami, where U.S. officials and representatives from 34 countries of Central and South America have been discussing the framework of an agreement that would remove trade barriers among member countries. If an agreement is reached, the FTAA would be the largest trading bloc in the world, stretching from Alaska to Argentina.
On weekday mornings, Leona Cotton, a cashier at the Tiger Conoco station on I-70 Drive Southwest, would watch U.S. mail trucks line up at the pumps for E85, a special fuel made from corn and soybeans.
The Columbia School Board failed to decide Thursday morning whether to join a lawsuit for equity and adequacy in school funding in Missouri. But the board did raise key issues that it said need to be researched before it votes on the matter in December.
The proposed lawsuit, which is being led by attorney Alex Bartlett of Jefferson City and so far involves 228 of the state’s 524 districts, would challenge Missouri’s formula for how districts receive money.
Heeding the concerns of dozens of residents who turned out to make their voices heard, the Planning and Zoning Commission voted to maintain the Russell Property in west Columbia as its owner originally intended: as a nature preserve and recreational park.
Attack countries that threaten the United States. Encourage dialogue and democracy. Promote free trade. These issues and more were addressed Thursday night during a public forum held at the Columbia Public Library.
The deliberation is part of the National Issues Forums, a nonpartisan network of meetings held nationally and locally to address issues of public policy. Nine Columbia residents led by two moderators expressed their views on four proposed approaches to America’s role in the world: international order through military action, democratic dialogue, promoting free trade and preserving the planet’s future.