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ST. LOUIS (AP) - A company that wants to build transmission lines to move wind energy from Kansas to Indiana has announced its proposed route through Missouri, but opponents say they'll continue the fight to keep the towers and lines away from their land.
 
Houston-based Clean Line Energy Partners hopes to begin construction as early as 2016 on its Grain Belt Express Clean Line. The company on Wednesday asked the Missouri Public Service Commission to approve the route through northern Missouri.
 
The route goes through eight counties: Buchanan, Clinton, Caldwell, Carroll, Chariton, Randolph, Monroe and Ralls.
 
Mark Lawlor of Clean Line says that in addition to providing access to clean energy, the project would create hundreds of jobs.
 
But many rural landowners say the project would reduce property values and create a health risk.
Thursday, 27 March 2014 12:38
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BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) - A convicted killer faces a May sentencing date after being found guilty of shooting a police officer in the face while the officer was trying to arrest him.
 
St. Clair County jurors deliberated an hour before convicting 38-year-old Cortez Gillum of two counts of attempted first-degree murder. Gillum also was found guilty of aggravated battery with a firearm and unlawfully possessing a weapon as a felon.
 
Prosecutors say that Gillum was wanted on a federal warrant in March 2012 because he'd violated parole after being released to a halfway house.
 
When police officer Michael Baxton Jr. spotted Gillum outside a public housing complex and tried to arrest him, the two struggled. Gillum shot Baxton, who survived. Gillum's previous convictions include one for second-degree murder.
   
 
Thursday, 27 March 2014 10:46
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 JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - Lawyers for a Guatemalan woman seeking to overturn her biological son's adoption by a southwest Missouri couple have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.
 
The Joplin Globe reports attorneys for Encarnacion Romero filed the request Monday. The Missouri Supreme Court has refused to hear the woman's challenge to a state appeals court ruling terminating her parental rights to the boy, who is now 7.
 
Joplin lawyer Bill Fleischaker, one of the biological mother's attorneys, says the appeal would assert in part that the ruling relied on the mother's immigration status in determining if the adoption should be allowed.
 
A lawyer for the adoptive parents says those issues had been argued in earlier proceedings. The adoptive parents have been caring for the boy for about six years.
Thursday, 27 March 2014 09:10
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JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - Students from the southwest Missouri district where nine schools were destroyed or damaged in a May 2011 tornado are headed to Moore, Okla., to help children who lost their school to a tornado last year.
 
Eleven fifth-graders from Stapleton Elementary School in Joplin will travel 225 miles by bus Friday to the Oklahoma community. They'll bring 300 books and $1,000 in pennies raised to help children at Plaza Towers Elementary, which was destroyed in a May 2013 tornado.
 
Nearly 7,000 homes were destroyed and 161 people were killed in the EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin on May 22, 2011. In Moore, an EF-5 tornado killed five people and destroyed 1,100 homes on May 20, 2013.
   
 
Thursday, 27 March 2014 08:22
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A state judge has been asked to put an immediate halt to Missouri's acceptance of joint tax returns from gay couples who got married legally in other states.
The request for a temporary restraining order was filed Wednesday in Cole County Circuit Court.
 
It's part of an ongoing lawsuit brought by several Missouri residents, including officials from the Missouri Baptist Convention. They're challenging a decision by Governor Jay Nixon's administration to accept combined tax returns from legally married same-sex couples.
 
The lawsuit contends Nixon's policy change violates a Missouri constitutional provision recognizing marriage only between a man and a woman.
 
Nixon has noted that Missouri's tax code is tied to the federal code, and that federal officials are now accepting joint tax returns from married same-sex couples.
 
Thursday, 27 March 2014 07:44
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missourians could lose welfare benefits if they go too long without using them in the state under legislation advanced by the House.
The House gave the measure first-round approval Wednesday. It needs a second vote before moving to the state Senate.
 
Recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families would be warned of possible suspensions if they go 60 days without using their electronic benefit card in Missouri.
The Department of Social Services would suspend accounts if benefits went unused in Missouri after 90 days. State officials would investigate whether a recipient is a Missouri resident.
 
 A state audit in December identified 366 cases in which recipients used $461,000 of benefits exclusively out of state for at least three months.
 
Thursday, 27 March 2014 07:17
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri House members have endorsed a bill that attempts to resist proposed federal regulations of wood-burning stoves.
The legislation received initial approval Wednesday. It would prohibit the state Department of Natural Resources from implementing regulations on wood-burning heaters without specific approval from the Legislature.
 
It's prompted by a proposed rule change by the Environmental Protection Agency that would give manufacturers five years to meet tougher standards that would reduce emissions from wood stoves by an estimated 80 percent.
Some manufacturers contend it would drive up the costs and could put them out of business.
 
Supporters of the Missouri legislation hope to prevent state regulators from helping to implement the proposed EPA regulations. The bill needs another House vote to move to the Senate.
Thursday, 27 March 2014 07:10
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