Clean, green hybrid machine

As gasoline prices climb above $2 a gallon, Missouri residents are starting to wonder how to save a buck or two at the pumps.

That question is what the Missouri Department of Natural Resources hopes to capitalize on with its Drive Clean and Green event.

Growth proponent joins council

A platform promoting balanced growth for Columbia and $21,000 in campaign financing proved to be a winning combination for Laura Nauser.

Nauser won the Fifth Ward seat on the Columbia City Council that will soon be vacated by John John. Nauser, opposed by Gayle Troutwine and Joseph Vradenburg, garnered 959 votes, or 56.4 percent.

First-timer, 2 incumbents elected to school board

Columbia voters elected first-time candidate Darin Preis and incumbents David Ballenger and Don Ludwig to the seven-member Columbia Board of Education on Tuesday. Preis, director of the Missouri Head Start collaboration office, finished in second place, receiving 24.52 percent of the votes.

He and his wife, Stacey, spent the evening monitoring election results with supporters at the Colosseum, a downtown restaurant.

P&Z to hold hearing for rezoning on Broadway

Jay Lindner says he will consider neighborhood concerns about bright lights and traffic when planning a development near Stephens Lake Park.

Lindner, a developer with Forum Development Group, has asked that the city rezone 8.15 acres on the northwest corner of Broadway and Trimble Road to accommodate multiple restaurants and office buildings. He would not comment on which restaurants he would build, but said some “sit-down restaurants, quick-casual restaurants, and one fast-food chain” are interested.

Judge has seen law from badge to bench

HALLSVILLE — Municipal Judge Lee Koury bought the bench he sits behind for $1 from the city of Springfield. That was a good deal. But his courtroom is so small he had to saw two feet off the end of the bench just to make it fit.

Koury has been the municipal judge in this northern Boone County town — population 1,200 — since 1993. He holds court once a month and handles 12 to 15 cases.

None hurt in fire at recycler

Flames engulfed hundreds of bales of recyclable materials at Civic Recycling, 3300 Brown Station Road, sending a column of black smoke into the blue evening sky Tuesday.

A Civic Recycling employee reported the two-alarm fire at 4:24 p.m. to Station 4 of the Columbia Fire Department. The downtown station was called later.

Two students remain in hospital after fire

Two MU students remained in critical condition Tuesday after a south Columbia house fire on Sunday, University Hospital media coordinator Jess Hoelscher said.

Curators to vote on grievance process

MU faculty are likely to see differences in the way they file their campus complaints. When it meets Friday in Rolla, the University of Missouri Board of Curators will vote on whether to implement a revised grievance process.

The new process, championed by MU’s Faculty Council, has been in the making for almost two years.

House plan reconsiders Amtrak cuts

JEFFERSON CITY — House budget writers on Tuesday restored money for Amtrak passenger train service and Alzheimer’s research — two items targeted for elimination in earlier budget proposals.

The House budget plan would fund the passenger trains, which make eight stops between Kansas City and St. Louis, with about $6.2 million, roughly the same amount Amtrak received for the current fiscal year.

Kemper awards given to two MU professors

Jana Hawley, assistant professor of textile and apparel management, and Glenn Good, associate professor of educational and counseling psychology, were awarded the second and third Kemper Fellowships for Teaching Excellence on Tuesday. Each receives $10,000 for the honor.

Stories about the surprise presentations of the Kemper awards will run Thursday in U Town. Seven more Kempers will be handed out during the next couple of weeks.

Driver hospitalized after car is struck

A car was struck from behind and flipped Monday night, sending one man to the hospital.

Larry Grantham, 54, was slowing to make a left turn onto Grant Lane from Chapel Hill Road when his car was hit by another car so strongly that Grantham’s car flipped and landed on its roof, Columbia police said.

Hallsville school bond passes

Hallsville voters passed a $2.95 million bond issue Tuesday — with no increased tax levy — to build a new primary school.

The final tally was 628 votes, or 78.8 percent, in favor of the issue and 206, or 24.7 percent, against. The measure needed a four-sevenths majority vote, or 57.1 percent, to pass.

Village’s attempt to annex land is denied

Pierpont voters unanimously approved a proposed annexation on Tuesday’s ballot, but residents north and east of the village rejected it.

But it wasn’t all bad news for voters in the newly incorporated village, who approved a sales tax of a half–cent that will take effect in October. The tax proposal passed by a margin of 14–0.

A look at ballots from across the county

Here’s a look at town council and school board races, along with other issues, on Tuesday’s ballots in Boone County.

Council allows rezoning request

Despite continued traffic concerns, the Columbia City Council gave the go-ahead Monday to a development proposal that will bring a golf course and hundreds of apartments to a 100-acre property on Clark Lane, east of Ballenger Lane.

The property plan originally included an 18-hole private golf course and 730 apartments. After meeting with neighborhood residents last week, the developer dropped the golf course to nine holes and increased the number of apartment units to 840.

Price of oil nears $60 a barrel amid instability

Oil prices briefly climbed to record territory above $58 a barrel Monday as concerns about growing demand and potential supply disruptions once again overshadowed improving crude inventories.

“I’ve been doing this for 22 years and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said oil analyst Ken Miller at Purvin & Gertz in Houston. “I view this as a very unstable situation.”

Crisis cycles make life more stressful

The price of gasoline at the pump has many people devising intricate lifestyle changes to save those dollars and cents that seem to be sucked down the drain of the gas tank each time they stop to fill up. I know folks who don’t turn on the car ignition until they have their list in hand of stops to make on the way to work, to the mall, to the gym, to the grocery store or to wherever their business takes them. The bottom line for them is to take care of all errands in one trip a day.

When I think back over the past few years, it’s difficult to remember a time when there wasn’t some kind of immediate social crisis to make life less joyful and make it more stressful. For a few months at the beginning of winter, we had the shortage in flu vaccine to keep people’s nerves on edge. Before that, there was the distressing news about certain drugs that had to be taken off the market because instead of serious complication issues. Lately, of course, there has been the push for people to create living wills and sign advance directives to make their desires known in the event of a life/death crisis. It’s no wonder; a lot of people are on the search for a simpler way of life.

Schools fly flags at half-staff

The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education notified public school districts across the state Monday afternoon to fly flags at half-staff in honor of the passing of Pope John Paul II.

The notice was issued on the heels of a Saturday statement from Gov. Matt Blunt that followed a presidential proclamation asking flags at all public buildings — including public schools — be flown at half-staff until sunset on the day of the pope’s burial, which is Friday.

Postal service unveils anthrax testing

Postal workers, known for delivering mail through snow, rain, heat and gloom of night, can add another element to the list of things that won’t stop them: biohazards.

The Columbia mail processing and distribution center will begin using its new Postal Service Biohazard Detection System today.

Director displays danger to workers

JEFFERSON CITY — Monday wasn’t just another quiet day at the office for Missouri Department of Transportation Director Pete Rahn.

He sat behind a desk, complete with a potted plant and a calculator, in a construction zone on northbound U.S. 63, fielding questions from the media as cars whizzed by.