Sat July 14, 2012
Top Stories Of The Week
The long-awaited Kansas City Major League Baseball All-Star game was played. Plans for streetcars rolled ahead. Those and other top stories of the week on the KCUR Saturday News Review.
NCS Designation Official For KU Cancer Center
Formally announcing National Cancer Center designation for the KU Cancer Center, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius emphasized how significant the designation is. Sebelius noted that almost every new cancer drug brought to market in the past 10 years has been based on research at a center so designated. Dignitaries on hand for the Thursday formal announcement added that it will guarantee that the latest cancer drugs and treatments are available in the area and provide a boost to health education and the economy.
North Kansas City Hospital Board Goes To Court
The board of North Kansas City Hospital sought a court injunction stopping any city plans to sell the hospital. The board contends that the city government only has the authority to appoint hospital board members, and that only the board has the power to sell the facility. Board Chair Dr. Mike Montgomery reiterated earlier board statements that the hospital is financially secure, doing a good job and does not need to be sold. As of Friday afternoon, the city had made no public response.
Long Waits At Kansas License Offices Prompt Audit
A committee of the Kansas Legislature announced that there will be an audit of troubles with the $40 million computer upgrade that has caused causing long lines at local DMV offices. Secretary of Revenue Nick Jordan says some of the issues stem from things like slow Internet speeds and training problems. He said he would not proclaim that the state has done a perfect job with the new system, but that his office has done “the best it could.” The state of Kansas is withholding the final payment to the system contractor, 3M, until some problems are resolved
Republicans Sue Over Health Measure Ballot Language
Missouri Lt. Governor Peter Kinder and other top Republicans filed suit over Democratic Secretary of State Robin Carnahan's using the ballot language “deny access” to affordable insurance for a measure on the health insurance exchange. Republicans in the Legislature had sent plan to restrict implementing the federal health care law to the voters rather than sending it to Governor Nixon and having him veto it.
Nixon Vetoes “Moral Objection” Contraception Bill
Governor Nixon did veto a bill allowing employers to refuse to offer insurance coverage for contraception if doing so proved troubling to them on moral or religious grounds. The Governor said current state law already provides protection of religious objections, and that the new bill would allow insurance companies to deny insurance covering contraception, even if a customer wanted it. .
Republicans say they will override the veto.
Council Funds Preliminary Work For Streetcar Plan
The Kansas City city council approved $2 million for advance planning on a downtown streetcar line. Councilman Dick Davis kicked off the idea with a brief pep talk, commenting that the council was still moving ahead with the plan and would get the streetcar system built, despite failure to get a $25 million TIGER grant. Council members said the funding is necessary in order to apply for other federal grants.
Drought Threatens Crops In Kansas, Missouri
82 Kansas counties were declared drought disaster areas and Missouri wanted a similar declaration. Missouri's governor and US senators have asked for similar status for 114 counties.
Hyatt Pushes For Plaza Site
Hyatt Hotels asked for major incentives to build a luxury hotel near the Plaza. The chain hopes to start on the 12-story, $80 million structure next year.
Boyfriend Charged In Child-In-Closet Case
The Prosecutors filed child endangerment charges against Marcus Benson, the boyfriend of the Jacole Prince, the woman accused of keeping her 10-year-old daughter locked in a closet. Police found the child June 22nd while responding to a hotline call. She weighed 32 pounds, less than half the average weight for her age.
Sporting Kansas City To Championships
Sporting KC earned a berth in soccer;s US Open championship tournament. The first game will be August 8th at Kansas City's Livestrong Sporting Park.
Kansas City All-Star Week Draws Crowds, Counterfeiters
Announcing total attendance of 124,000 a day at All-Star-related events, Major League Baseball claimed success for Kansas City All-Star Game Week. So did law enforcement groups that seized more than $540,000 in counterfeit Major League Baseball merchandise.