Jefferson City, MO – A public beach at Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks is closed because of high levels of E. coli.
The Department of Natural Resources says it closed the beach after tests Friday showed high levels of bacteria in the lake's main channel. The agency blames runoff from last week's rains for the contamination.
It's the same beach that was not closed in May despite two tests showing high E. coli. An internal investigation found several other examples of beaches that were not properly closed.
Kansas City, MO – Kansas may be about to botch efforts to lure a corporate office complex and major league soccer stadium to Kansas City, according to some legislators who are pressuring Gov. Mark Parkinson's administration to close a deal.
Medical software maker Cerner Corp. and the owners of the Kansas City Wizards are proposing a $414 million development near NASCAR's Kansas Speedway. The project includes an office complex for 4,500 Cerner employees, an 18,500-seat stadium for the Wizards and two dozen soccer fields for amateur teams.
Kansas City, MO – The Institute for Urban Education at the University of Missouri-Kansas City is receiving an 8 million dollar federal grant.
The five-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education will help the four-year-old institute expand its efforts to train education majors to work in urban classrooms. The grant will allow the institute to hire more professors and increase student enrollment in the program.
The school of education's dean says the grant suggest the focus on urban education is cutting edge and nationally relevant.
The U.S. Senate has confirmed former Kansas education commissioner Alexa Posny's appointment to a federal education post.
President Barack Obama nominated Posny as assistant secretary for special education and rehabilitative services in July. She worked for the U.S. Department of Education from 2006-07 as director of special education before becoming Kansas education commissioner.
When announcing Posny's nomination, the White House noted her experience as both an administrator and a teacher at the elementary, middle and high school levels.
Kansas City, MO – Illegal sex is a problem in Kansas prisons, but it's not as widespread as inmates and staff suggest, the state's top prisons official.
Corrections Secretary Roger Werholtz responded to an investigation by the Topeka Capital-Journal, which reviewed hundreds of documents on the Topeka Correctional Facility and interviewed inmates and prison employees. The investigation concluded as many as a third of the prison's 250 staff members have been involved in an illegal black market, including exchanging sex with female inmates for drugs.
Kansas City, MO – High bacteria levels may have been fairly common at the Lake of the Ozarks this summer. Newly released Missouri water records show a spike this year in bacteria levels at two state beaches.
Results from E. coli tests at the popular central Missouri tourist attraction were high enough in 2009 that the state's two beaches should have been closed 11 times since May. That's more than twice the number of times those beaches were to be closed from 2003 until 2008. It's also more than this year's closings at every other Missouri waterway.
Kansas City, MO – Kansas Congressman Dennis Moore says he's pushing for a public option in national health reform legislation. Moore, a Democrat from Lenexa, is part of the Blue Dog Coalition. The group is made up of more than 50 fiscally conservative Democrats in the U.S. House. Moore says he hopes a public option will be part of a bipartisan bill.
Moore: "It's not about trying to establish some kind of national health care plan. It's about giving some competition to some other players out there and making sure that everybody has an opportunity for health care in this country."
Kansas City, MO – President Barack Obama has nominated Beth Phillips to be U.S. attorney for the Western District of Missouri, which is centered in Kansas City. The Obama administration announced the nomination yesterday.
Phillips has served as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Kansas City office since last year and has prosecuted child exploitation cases. She served as an assistant prosecutor in Jackson County from 1997 to 2001, when she entered private practice.
Kansas City, MO – The Ozark aquifer, a primary source of water in southwest Missouri, could go dry in places if demand increases by as little as 1 percent a year over the next 50 years.
The aquifer is also used in Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas.
A study from the U.S. Geological Survey shows that pumping from the Ozark aquifer might not be sustainable at Carthage and Noel if a 1 percent annual increase in water-withdrawal rates occurs each year from 2007 to 2057.