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In other back-to-school news, starting Friday families have a chance to load up on school supplies and can avoid paying sales tax.

Missouri's annual Sales Tax Holiday runs through Sunday. In most area communities, consumers will not have to pay any sales tax on everything from pencils to computers. There are restrictions on what is exempt from tax and some communities that are not waving local taxes. 

The state sales tax will not be charged on the following items during the holiday:

Clothing that does not have a value of more than $100. Eligible clothing includes standard items of apparel worn on or about the body, and includes footwear. It also includes material to make school uniforms or other school clothing. It does not include accessories such as watches, jewelry, handbags, handkerchiefs, umbrellas, scarves, ties, headbands and belt buckles.

School supplies, not exceeding $50 per purchase, that are used in a standard classroom for educational purposes. School supplies include textbooks, notebooks, paper, pens, pencils, crayons, art supplies, rulers, book bags, backpacks, handheld calculators, chalk, maps and globes. School supplies do not include CD players, headphones, sporting equipment, portable telephones, copiers or other office equipment.

Personal computers that don’t cost more than $3,500 and computer peripheral devices that don’t exceed $3,500. A personal computer can be a laptop, desktop or tower computer system which consists of a central processing unit, random access memory, a storage drive, display monitor, keyboard and other related devices. Peripheral devices include items such as a disk drive, memory module, CD drive, microphone, modem, motherboard, mouse, speakers, printer, scanner, sound card or video card. Computer software is considered a school supply and is free from sales tax if its value is less than $350.

 

Come of the counties NOT participating include:

Iron

Phelps

Pike

Reynolds

St. Francois

Ste. Genevieve

Some of the cities NOT participating are:

Alton

Bellerive Acres

Berkeley

Beverly Hills

Black Jack

Brentwood

Bridgeton

Byrnes Mill

Cabool

Charlack

Clayton

Cool Valley

Crystal City

Des Peres

Desloge

DeSoto

Doniphan

Edmundson

Ellisville

Farmington

Fayette

Fenton

Ferguson

Festus

Frontenac

Hawk Point

Kirkwood

Ladue

Manchester

Maplewood

Marlborough Village

Moscow Mills

New Melle

Northwoods

Overland

Pevely

Richmond Heights

Rock Hill

Shrewsbury

St Ann

St Peters

Ste Genevieve

Town & Country

University City

Warson Woods

Webster Groves

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Lottery is allowing people who have a gambling problem to voluntarily ban themselves for life.

People who participate will be prohibited from claiming winnings of $600 or more. The option started Thursday, and officials say it is modeled after self-exclusion programs in Illinois, Iowa and Maryland.

Missouri Lottery Executive Director May Scheve Reardon says the $600 figure was chosen because lottery winnings of that amount or more are claimed at one of the lottery's regional offices. She says enforcement at 5,000 retail locations would be impossible.

To enact a self-ban, people will sign, notarize and submit an agreement to the Missouri Lottery. Officials will keep a database to be checked when someone comes to claim a prize. Those who have banned themselves will be denied payment.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Supporters of a Missouri initiative to restrict passengers on motorcycles can begin collecting signatures to get the proposal on the 2014 ballot.

   The secretary of state's office announced Wednesday that the petition met standards for circulation. Proponents have until next May to collect enough signatures to get the proposal before voters.

   The proposal would require Missouri motorcycle operators to be at least 21 and complete a rider-safety class before they could carry passengers. The restrictions would not apply to those who have had had a motorcycle license for the previous two years and were born in 1984 or earlier.

   The first violation would be a misdemeanor with a fine of up to $300. Penalties would increase for repeat offenses.

 
Published in Local News
Wednesday, 31 July 2013 16:45

Missouri Democratic Leader to step down

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party plans to step down from the leadership post next month.

Mike Sanders was elected state party chairman in November 2011 and was re-elected in January. He also is serving his second term as Jackson County executive.

Sanders announced his plan to step down in a statement Wednesday from the Missouri Democratic Party. He says he looks forward to working with the next chairman to advance the state and party.

The Democratic Party plans to select a new party leader during the state committee's meeting Aug. 24 at a hotel in Jefferson City.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri health officials say they've been notified of two cases of intestinal illness from cyclospora.

The state Department of Health and Senior Services said Friday the reports came from health providers in Jackson County and southwest Missouri's Taney County.

The agency is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to determine if Missouri's cases are linked to suspected outbreaks in several other states. The CDC says most of the reported illnesses occurred from mid-June to early July.

Missouri officials have not yet confirmed the source of the illnesses. Cyclospora infections are mostly found in tropical or subtropical countries and have been linked to imported fresh produce in past instances.

Health providers advise people with diarrhea, severe stomach cramps or nausea to seek medical attention.

Published in Local News

An nationwide email scam is popping up in Missouri.

The email claims that the recipient is owed millions in unclaimed property. The email typically comes from someone named Alex James and says that the money comes from a dead relative. The sender then asks for personal information to claim the prize.

State Treasurer Clint Zweifel reminds everyone that they can check for unclaimed property at  showmemoney.com.

Published in Local News

Changes are afoot at St. Louis area casinos.

The Missouri Gaming Commission approved Pinnacle Entertainment's plan to buy Ameristar Casinos. Pinnacle will buy the St. Charles and Kansas City casinos. Pinnacle is the current owner of Lumiere Place and River City Casino. They now have to sell Lumiere to meet federal regulators' requirements.

Pinnacle hopes to secure a buyer in the coming weeks.

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 24 July 2013 13:31

Sen. McCaskill puzzled by attack ad

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Sen. Claire McCaskill has long been an advocate for victims of sexual assault in the military, so the Missouri Democrat is perplexed after being singled out in newspaper and Facebook ads calling her a roadblock to reforming the system.

Protect Our Defenders, a Washington-based advocacy group for military sexual assault victims, took aim at McCaskill in a half-page St. Louis Post-Dispatch ad over her opposition to an amendment proposed by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York. Gillibrand's proposal would authorize military lawyers - rather than commanding officers - to decide which cases go to trial.

McCaskill favors reforms suggested by the House Armed Services military personnel subcommittee. She says she finds the ad puzzling given her history criticizing the military's handling of sexual assault cases.

 

Published in Local News

  ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) - Officials at a northwest Missouri lake are working to prevent another big fish kill.

   One of two pumps was activated at Lake Contrary in Buchanan County last week. Joan Bennett, president of the Lake Contrary Development Association, says the pump will supply up to 2,000 gallons of water a minute to the lake. The pumps will cool the water and provide enough oxygen to try and prevent any more fish kills.

   The St. Joseph News Press reports dead fish already have been discovered at the lake this summer. An estimated 20,000 fish died last August. And hundreds of thousands of fish died at the lake in 2003.

   The pump costs $1,500 a month. The lake plans to run only one of the pumps for now to save money.

 

Published in National News

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A Columbia farmers market flap highlights the challenges of ensuring that products labeled as locally-grown are the real thing.

Wilson's Garden Center owner Chuck Bay says he was kicked out of the popular Columbia Farmers Market for violating the market's vendor rules.

Bay says the board of directors flagged his stand for selling starter plants that had been purchased at a wholesale produce market in the Morgan County town of Versailles. He calls the market's rules on such products vague and says the board resents that he also sets up shop at a competing farmers market with less restrictive rules.

Board members say the rules are clear: vendors must grow their own products.

Published in Local News

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