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Sherman A1

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Gender: Male
Current location: U.S.
Member since: Sat May 13, 2006, 07:37 AM
Number of posts: 38,958

Journal Archives

Watchdog files 2nd complaint against Senate hopeful Greitens

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A federal elections watchdog group on Wednesday filed another complaint against former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, alleging that money from his old gubernatorial campaign was illegally spent on kickstarting his campaign to run for retiring U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt’s seat.

The Campaign Legal Center, a Washington-based nonprofit, filed its complaint with the Missouri Ethics Commission against Greitens, who resigned in 2018 amid a sex scandal and other claims of campaign finance misconduct. He’s running in a crowded Republican primary for Blunt’s seat.

At issue is $100,000 that the Campaign Legal Center alleges Greitens’ state gubernatorial committee illegally spent to kickstart his Senate campaign. State campaign funds cannot be used for federal campaigns.

In October, the nonprofit filed a complaint about the spending with the Federal Elections Commission. Greitens’ Senate campaign has said that “no gubernatorial campaign funds were used for the Senate campaign” in response to the FEC complaint.


Personal property taxpayers see higher bills for vehicles due to shortages

COLUMBIA — Missouri personal property taxpayers Wednesday saw higher tax bills for vehicles this year compared to last year. Low supplies and high demands increased the values of used cars and trucks. Even if you weren’t looking to buy a new vehicle, rising car and truck prices could still impact your wallet because rising vehicle prices affected what you paid in personal property tax.

Boone County Assessor Kenny Mohr said, “We saw an increase in 2021 and we’re probably going to see an increase in vehicle values for the 2022 cycle, also.”

Mohr said while used car inventories went down and prices went up, so did personal property tax bills. Mohr said state statue forced him to use the National Automobile Dealers Association “blue book” value for vehicle assessments.

Mohr said, “According to state statues, we must use the October edition of the NADA book and use the average trade value of that vehicle. Based on that and the supply being down and the demand being high, those trade values are increasing.”


30 things Biden has done to help workers

From legislation to executive actions and appointments, Biden is getting things done for union workers


A little over a year ago, President Joe Biden won a stunning election victory, upsetting Trump and making him the first president to lose reelection in 28 years. At the time, President Biden said that he would be the most pro-union president in the history of the country.

With the end of the year fast approaching, UCOMM has decided to take a look at whether President Biden has been able to deliver on that promise. Some of these were included in UCOMM’s previous piece on what was accomplished after 100 days, but thankfully since then, many things have changed.

Most of these were pretty easy, low-hanging fruit for Biden since he controls who he can appoint and fire. In fact, some, like the firing of Peter Robb, took place only hours after he took office.

1) Fired Peter Robb – Robb was the anti-union general counsel that Trump appointed to lead the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Traditionally the general counsel is tasked with prosecuting cases against bad employers, but Robb used the position to go after unions and union-friendly rules. Robb was fired within hours of Biden taking office.


Netflix to invest $100M in Black-led banks

WASHINGTON (TND) — Following through on the company's pledge to help close the equity gap, Netflix will invest $100 million into Black-led financial institutions.

Netflix announced Wednesday that the streaming giant will be shifting 2% of its cash holdings, or $100 million, into six banks that serve Black communities.

"We’re excited to announce that Netflix has fulfilled its pledge to move two percent of our cash holdings — around $100 million — into Black banks and other Black-led financial institutions in the US," Netflix Director of Human Resources Aaron Mitchell and Netflix Treasurer Shannon Alwyn said in a post. "More capital moving into these institutions means more home and small-business loans, resulting in more opportunities for Black communities. So we will be 'topping up' our commitment at the end of the year and moving more cash — over and above the $100 million already committed — into these institutions."

In its blog post, Netflix detailed that the $100 million will be distributed to financial institutions:


Holiday light show that donates to charity canceled this year due to new parking law

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah (KUTV) — A holiday light show that donates the proceeds to charity will not go on this year because of a new parking law.

A recently passed ordinance in West Valley City, Utah prohibits drivers to park a car on any residential street within five feet of a driveway.

With so many people who come out to see the light show, known as the "Lights on Wakefield," the homeowner said he's not going to chance anyone getting a ticket while at the show, so it’s not happening this year.

“We would have the 20-foot snowman, and I mean just Christmas cheer, it's Christmastime and everybody is supposed to be happy,” said Robbie Gowers, who has put on the holiday light display in front of his West Valley City home for the last 14 years.


(Missouri) Natural gas customers prepare for higher utility bills this winter

COLUMBIA, MO— Spire West natural gas customers in Howard, Moniteau, Pettis, and Saline Counties saw their rates double Tuesday from 40 cents per hundred cubic feet of gas to 79 cents. Central Missouri natural gas customers of both Ameren Missouri and Spires Energy saw higher bills because of a February severe freeze in Texas that blocked the flow of gas to other states and spiked wholesale prices.

Spires Energy officials doubled gas rates to about 80 cents per hundred cubic feet of gas. Ameren Missouri officials did the same thing on November 1. Fulton natural gas customers were not seeing the higher rates because Fulton was one of the few cities in Missouri that acted as a natural gas utility. City Administrator Bill Johnson said the City of Fulton had enough reserves to keep natural gas prices at lower levels for his customers.

Johnson said, “The reserves that we have in the bank and the natural gas fund came from the consumer. You can think of it as the profit the city makes. We put that money in a special fund to allow us to weather situations that we’re going to be coming into during the next several months.”

Ameren Missouri and Spire Energy officials said energy assistance was available to some customers who had trouble paying utility bills.


Omicron unravels travel industry's plans for a comeback

Tourism businesses that were just finding their footing after nearly two years of devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic are being rattled again as countries throw up new barriers to travel in an effort to contain the omicron variant.

From shopping districts in Japan and tour guides in the Holy Land to ski resorts in the Alps and airlines the world over, a familiar dread is rising about the renewed restrictions.

Meanwhile, travelers eager to get out there have been thrown back into the old routine of reading up on new requirements and postponing trips

Abby Moore, a librarian and associate professor at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, was scheduled to leave for Prague on Wednesday. But the day before her flight, she started having doubts when she saw that Prague had closed its Christmas markets and imposed a city-wide curfew.


SSM Health to shut down Lake Ozark Clinic

LAKE OZARK — SSM Health is shutting down their Lake Ozark Walk-In Clinic, leaving patients to travel close to an hour for medical care.

SSM Health clinic patients received a letter dated Nov. 19 informing them the clinic would be shutting down effective Dec. 31.

The letter sent to patients offers alternate locations in either Jefferson City or Tipton for continued SSM Health medical treatment. Each of those locations are about an hour away for Lake Ozark residents.

SSM Health said they must concentrate their resources to where they are most needed, which can result in the closure of clinics. SSM Health has not given further specifics as to why they are closing their Lake Ozark location. KRCG 13 reached out to SSM Health several times for the specific reason behind the closure and a breakdown of specific locations patients will now have to travel for care. KRCG 13 also asked the hospital system whether or not employees will be displaced from their jobs, but have not heard back.

Legislators discuss reevaluating Missouri educational curriculum

JEFFERSON CITY — A joint committee of Missouri legislators heard nearly four hours of testimony on Tuesday regarding the status of education in Missouri, particularly its history curriculum and the role of school board members in public hearings.

"I don't think we should be afraid of ideas," Dr. Andrew Bolger, one of the hearing's witnesses said. "When we don’t remember history, when we don’t wrestle with the gravity of what happened in the past, the warts, the failures, the successes, then we are liable to repeat it over and over and over again.”

Dr. Bolger is an administrative officer at the College of the Ozarks, which is developing its own K-12 history curriculum, after releasing a K-6 curriculum.

Dr. Matthew Spalding, a vice president at Hillsdale College, offered testimony over the phone. Hillsdale has developed a similar "1776 Curriculum," a free, K-12 history course that the college claims to be unbiased.


Pro-worker Trish Gunby ready to take on anti-worker Ann Wagner in 2nd Congressional District race

State. Rep. Trish Gunby (D-Ballwin) announced to St. Louis Labor Council delegates Nov. 16 that she is taking on Congresswomen Ann Wagner (R) in the Aug. 2022 primary.

Wagner voted AGAINST the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that will bring almost $7 billion in new job-creating construction spending to Missouri. Representing Missouri’s 2nd District since 2013, Wagner has consistently voted against any and all legislation that would benefit working families but heartily supported the euphemistically named Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 that provided massive tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires but left working people holding the bag.

Proudly noting that she has supported the issues that are important to working families since winning election to the Missouri Legislature in 2019, Gunby is asking for Labor’s support.

Gunby believes Wagner’s anti-worker voting record, which stands in stark contrast to her own worker-oriented voting record, should make the difference in the election, allowing her to “bring a voice that is more in keeping with what I think the beliefs are in the 2nd Congressional District” to Washington.

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