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State Senate strikes gift cap

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri senators on Tuesday removed the lid on the value of gifts they can accept from lobbyists but closed the lid on laptop computers.

By a voice vote, the Senate voted to eliminate from its rules a provision barring senators from accepting gifts worth more than $50 from a single lobbyist or more than $100 in gifts from multiple lobbyists per year.

Exhibit looks at Columbia history

Throughout February, the basement of the Old Armory Sports Center will display a part of Columbia’s past not easily found by opening a history book.

Wynna Faye Elbert, a founding member of the Blind Boone Heritage Foundation, and Bill Thompson, a specialist with the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department, have assembled the exhibit during Black History Month for more than 10 years. Elbert created it while working on her master’s degree in community development at MU. Instead of writing a thesis, she received approval to engage in a creative endeavor.

Parents learn to map out progress

Parents have two opportunities tonight to discuss coming Missouri Assessment Program tests and the No Child Left Behind Act, a federal act initiated by President Bush that set annual goals for standardized test scores.

The Columbia chapter of the National Education Association is hosting a MAP informational session from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Hickman High School commons, and the MU chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, the professional association for educators, will discuss the federal act from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the Lee Room of Dulaney Hall at Columbia College. Both are open to the public.

Inauguration reflections

Attending an inauguration isn’t about remembering what the president happened to say. Unlike the State of the Union address, which sets the president’s agenda for the year, an inauguration is less about the country’s problems and more about balls, parades, flags, machine guns atop buildings and — most important — gold-embossed souvenir invitations.

That’s the perception of two Columbia residents who sat down Monday to reminisce about their experiences at two inaugurations 32 years apart. They were more inspired by the opportunity to rub elbows with the likes of Don King and Colonel Sanders than by anything Presidents Richard Nixon or George W. Bush said.

Faith sparks home-schooling for some

To the left, a large shelf spans the entire wall filled with education curriculum, history and literature books and rocks labeled with their scientific names.

In the corner of the room sits a student’s desk, there is a globe on another desk, and hanging on the wall is a chart listing all the U.S presidents.

Curators to vote on tuition increase

The University of Missouri Board of Curators will vote Thursday on the smallest tuition increase since 2001-02.

A 3.5 percent increase for the 2005-06 school year will be formally proposed by Elson Floyd, president of the University of Missouri System, when the curators gather at MU.

Gauging the State of the Union

Tonight, President Bush will address Congress, the nation and the world in the first State of the Union address of his second term. The speech serves as the president’s keynote address for the year, an opportunity for him to outline his domestic and foreign policy agendas.

The tradition is rooted in the U.S. Constitution and George Washington’s historic first State of the Union address in 1790, which focused on how to maintain the union of the states and establish the foundation for a successful democracy. Two hundred and fifteen years later, President Bush is likely to discuss the challenges of establishing a democracy in Iraq, the prospect of an independent Palestinian state and the need for Social Security reform.

Filtration Innovation

Wilderness gurus will find the most innovative part of Columbia’s new Bass Pro Shop outside its doors.

IARA waits for ruling on assets

The Islamic American Relief Agency will have to wait at least two more weeks for a judge to determine whether the agency can regain control of its assets and resume its work.

Senator pushes for Reagan day

JEFFERSON CITY — It’s a short list.

George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Harry S. Truman, Martin Luther King, Jr., Christopher Columbus. Those are the men Missouri honors with state holidays.

County purchases prime real estate

As a committee discusses how to ease a space crunch in Boone County government, county commissioners have acquired or contracted to buy several pieces of prime downtown real estate.

Engineers eat fill at free lunch

Whoever said there’s no such thing as a free lunch has not met a member of MU’s American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Hot dogs, chips and chili filled a long table in front of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering office at MU’s Thomas and Nell Lafferre Hall on Friday afternoon. A warm grill and a bag of charcoal sat outside the building in the cold weather. The scene was more reminiscent of a barbecue than a January school day, but for the society, the two are interwoven.

Donate children’s books at MU games

MU athletics fans are asked to bring books appropriate for children up to age 6 to Tiger men’s and women’s basketball games Feb. 12.

The books will be donated to the Mizzou Tigers Children’s Book Drive, sponsored by the MU athletic department, Boone Early Childhood Partners and the Golden K Kiwanis Club of Columbia.

Booze targeted for tax boost

JEFFERSON CITY — A state representative wants voters to quadruple the tax on beer, double the tax on spirits and boost the tax on wine to pay for a program addressing alcohol abuse and underage drinking.

Trip to prepare officials for disaster

To better deal with everything from tornadoes to terrorist attacks, about 50 officials from Columbia and Boone County met Monday morning to prepare for a trip to a Federal Emergency Management Agency training session in Maryland.

A month of memories

CIVIL RIGHTS EXHIBIT

An exhibit on civil rights will be featured through the month of February at Missouri State Museum; contact 751-2854.

Fear could lead us to make changes

Weather has been a major newsmaker for the past several months. Tsunamis, mudslides and snowstorms have made the headlines. People-against-nature stories abound.

People are amazed that others continue to choose to live in places where natural disasters occur almost every year. As one who has lived in an area struck by two major tornadoes, I know that everyone has his or her own reason for choosing to rebuild and hope for the best. Since the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001, there’s been more focus on the desire to “live safe.” Some people actually live in constant fear of being the victim of a terrorist plot. Sadly enough, I know some folks who have given into their fears, thinking that everyday life constitutes a virtual landmine of dangers.

Committee examines cloning, stem-cell ethics

JEFFERSON CITY — The issues of cloning and stem-cell research found themselves under the microscope at a state Senate hearing Monday night.

Sen. Matt Bartle, R-Jackson County, presented a bill to the Senate Judiciary Committee to outlaw human cloning in Missouri by defining the creation of a human as the egg of a human female fertilized by the sperm of a human male.

Power of prayer

The 9:45 a.m. service at Grace Bible Church was missing two of its regulars Sunday.

“That’s where Molly and Corey usually sit,” said Michael Burt, the church’s pastor, gesturing to where wounded Columbia police Officer Molly Bowden and her husband, Officer Corey Bowden, sit when they attend the service.

SMSU nears new name trademark

As lawmakers have spent months arguing over who should own the name Missouri State University, lawyers behind the scenes have nearly finished a process that would grant Southwest Missouri State University rights to the name, angering those who have said it belongs to MU.

In January and February 2004, SMSU filed three federal applications to trademark the names Missouri State and Missouri State University — two for clothing and one for educational services. Now, after nearly a year of processing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, lawyers from SMSU are awaiting word that the name is officially theirs — at least from the standpoint of federal commerce.

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