Floyd says ‘nightmare’ not a reason to resign

KANSAS CITY — Elson Floyd said Thursday he will not resign as president of the UM system despite being caught in the “whirlwind of controversy” surrounding former Missouri basketball player Ricky Clemons and tapes of Clemons’ jailhouse telephone conversations with Floyd’s wife and the wife of an associate athletic director.

Floyd acknowledged in a news conference preceding Thursday’s meeting of the University of Missouri Board of Curators that he had considered a range of options, including his resignation, following revelations about conversations his wife, Carmento, had with Clemons while the former player was in the Boone County Jail, serving time for assaulting a girlfriend.

County faces shot shortage as flu season comes early

The flu bug that bit Boone County early this year has become more widespread in December, causing a shortage of the injectable vaccines used to combat the virus.

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Health said Thursday that it is out of injectable vaccinations. The department had received 227 reported cases of the flu from area hospitals since Nov. 6. More than 50 cases were reported on Monday and Tuesday.

Millersburg residents protest land farm plans

For more than a year, members of the Millersburg community have been battling plans to treat contaminated soil near their homes in Callaway County, as well as the state officials who would regulate the business. That clash continued Thursday when residents had a chance to speak out at a joint meeting with state regulators from the Department of Natural Resources.

The so-called “land farms” treat petroleum-contaminated soil using natural processes to break down hydrocarbon compounds by spreading the contaminated soils in a thin layer outdoors. The soil is occasionally tilled for aeration or treated with fertilizer and moisture to accelerate the process. Millersburg residents have condemned a partially built land farm near their homes for fear that the contaminated soil could affect health and property values.

All wrapped up and ready to go

Kim Heyes didn’t ask for presents this year. Instead, she wished for her children to have a good Christmas.

With the help of Columbia’s Voluntary Action Center, Heyes is getting her wish.

Accident rates soar on first snow day

Columbia’s first major winter storm of the season, which covered the town with 3 to 5 inches of snow, demonstrated that even experienced winter drivers can be caught off guard by a sudden storm.

On Wednesday, 186 accidents were reported to the Public Safety Joint Communications Center. That number was “certainly more than the normal dozen or so,” accidents the center handles on an average day, said James McNabb, the center’s director.

New center to aid soybean research goals

Establishing the National Center for Soybean Technology at MU will attract scientists from all over the world and could produce research that leads to cures for serious diseases and to more drought-resistant crops.

Dale Ludwig, executive director of the Missouri Soybean Association, made those predictions Thursday at a press conference to announce a $900,000 federal grant secured by U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., that will establish the center.

Jeffries will run for Wilson’s seat

After two decades of Democratic dominance in the 25th District of the Missouri House of Representatives, Republican Joel Jeffries believes he can change history.

Meanwhile, a pair of Democrats hope the district will remain in the donkeys’ turf.

The answer to the question: ’Is it hot in there?’

At Sesame Street Live, everyone has a role to play, but that doesn’t always mean there’s a furry suit involved.

Less than 15 minutes after a seven-hour bus trip from Jonesboro, Ark., Caitlin McIntosh and Heather Shankweiler were sitting in their hotel lobby fulfilling one of those roles: media spokesperson. It’s a job neither of them minds.

Plummetting temperatures have got mid-Missourians looking for food for the birds

The temperature is dropping and birds are flying south for the winter. But what about the birds that stay in Missouri all winter or those that consider Missouri as far south as they’ll go? With the weather turning cold and the natural bird-food supply getting scarce, many Columbians are now gearing up to feed the birds.

Homemade Bird Feeder and Suet recipes from the national bird-feeding society

Personal experience compels MU research

Imagine the embarrassment of not being able to eat a bowl of soup at your neighbor’s, write a check at the store or hold a glass of punch during a friend’s wedding reception, all because your hands are shaking violently.

Make no mistake

It’s the time of year when high school seniors across the country are sending in their college applications — mistakes and all.

Kim Girse, college and career counselor for Rock Bridge High School, said that some of the most frequent mistakes prospective college students make are in grammar, spelling and legibility.

Clemons’ tapes stir inquiries

In taped telephone

calls, Clemons alleges payments to athletes.

Doctor used faith as tool

Dr. Vincent Paul Gurucharri spent the last two years fighting a rare form of cancer. On Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2003, his battle ended at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis at the age of 58.

Before he was ever diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, Dr. Gurucharri found his faith in God to be an important tool in his career as a surgeon.

Other schools set model for Latino outreach

Changes have been slow in coming to MU compared with other universities in the Midwest, but a new generation of university officials is realizing that MU needs to step up its efforts of diversifying its minority recruitment, and they now are taking measures to do that.

Severe budget cuts have hampered efforts in recent years, but there’s another factor that runs deeper. MU administrators say they are working to overcome a stigma that MU has long held for many minority students and educators. Handy Williamson, vice provost for minority affairs and faculty development, said one of the impediments that MU faces in its recruitment efforts is a reputation among minorities that MU is not minority-friendly.

A flurry of problems

When Columbia Public School officials checked road conditions and the forecast at 6 a.m. Tuesday, they thought they were doing the right thing by keeping classes on schedule for more than 16,000 students. By mid-morning, they were having second thoughts.

Assistant Superintendent Chris Mallory said weather conditions deteriorated quickly and people were caught off guard.

The Ricky Clemons story as it unfolded

Jan. 17: Missouri point guard Ricky Clemons is arrested and charged with second-degree domestic assault for allegedly choking his girlfriend, Jessica Bunge. Clemons is suspended for a Jan. 18 game against Oklahoma State. The Tigers lose 76-56.

FBI releases tapes

Ted Boehm, Boone County Sheriff, said compliance with the state’s Sunshine Law sparked the release of taped phone conversations Ricky Clemons had while in Boone County Jail.

The FBI collected the records from the jail in August.

Groups worry about Philips tract’s size

A rezoning that would accommodate the largest development in Boone County history continues to spark debate among residents.

The Boone County Smart Growth Coalition and Clear Creek Neighborhood Association met Wednesday night to warn Columbia residents about problems they see in plans to develop the 489-acre Philips Farm in southeast Columbia. Developer Elvin Sapp has applied for a rezoning that would put a mix of residential and commercial development in the environmentally sensitive Clear and Gans creeks’ watersheds.

Shades of Heritage

The students who comprise the Latino population at MU are as colorful as the countries they come from. Some are from tropical Puerto Rico, others from spicy South America. Many are several generations removed from their Latino country of origin. With this mixture come many shades of identification with their respective cultures. From Spanish fluency to Christmas tamales, here are a few of the ways Hispanic MU students show their cultural identity.