A number of issues were on the agenda for this week’s meeting of the Laurie Board of Alderman. One of the main topics dealt with planning and zoning as the board approved a recommendation to amend an ordinance pertaining to non-conforming residential use in commercial zoning. Previously, homes were allowed to continue having residential use after commercial zoning was established as long as they had not become unoccupied for 180 days. That’s now been changed to one year. In other business it was announced the city has received the 2013 source water protection system of the year award from the Missouri Rural Water Association. The award is presented to the city that’s taken the best steps in fighting water pollution.
A Miller County Sheriff’s Deputy who collapsed while serving a high risk search warrant has been released after spending nearly a month in the hospital. Deputy Tom McClelland was discharged from Mercy hospital Wednesday and will now undergo therapy and rehabilitation. On May 16th, deputies found McMlelland not breathing and with no pulse after collapsing while serving a search warrant in Eldon.
Opponents are challenging the ballot wording of a proposed sales tax increase for transportation projects. A lawsuit filed Thursday by the Missouri Association for Social Welfare contends the wording needs to be rewritten for the august ballot as it is misleading and unfair. Supporters say the lawsuit is a long shot attempt to make the wording more confusing. The proposed tax increase would impose a three- quarter-cent sales tax for roads, bridges and other transportation projects at the lake of the Ozarks and across the state. Supporters say it would generate $534 million dollars annually over the next ten years. Voters will decide the measure’s fate in august.
Lake area residents are being asked to weigh in on a list of transportation projects and improvements that officials say could improve safety, create jobs and boost the state’s economy. Starting tomorrow a list of proposed projects will be released by the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission. At their meeting this week, the commission heard MoDot’s progress report on the creation of the list and decided to extend the public comment period until July 3rd. The commission will review all comments and approve the list on July 9th. Voters will then decide the fate of a proposed sales tax increase in August which would fund the proposed projects. if approved, it would be the highest tax increase in Missouri History.
The fight between Noranda Aluminum and Ameren Missouri continues over electric rates. one thing both parties agree on is all customers will be affected regardless of the outcome. Noranda, a Southeast Missouri Aluminum Smelter filed two complaints with the State’s Public Service Commission asking for a lower rate and accusing the company of over earning. Noranda is asking for its electric rate to drop from about $41 to $30 per mega watt hour. Ameren warns lowering the rate will pass higher rates on to other customers. Evidentiary hearings on the matter are set to begin Monday with a decision in the case by the end of September. As for the charge that Ameren is earning more than the state allows, the P.S.C. says it has found no evidence pointing to the need for an investigation.
A Sunrise Beach man is behind bars following an investigation by the Camden County Street Crimes Unit. Police say they were contacted by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office in reference to information they had developed on a wanted subject in the Sunrise Beach area. 27 year old Joshua Lee Tyree was apprehended without incident in the 100 block of Ninebark Court. Tyree is currently being held in the Camden County Adult Detention Facility on outstanding warrants from Polk County for domestic assault and probation violation.
A federal lawsuit against more than 100 officials and residents in Camden and Laclede counties has been dropped. In a motion for voluntary dismissal the Lebanon couple who brought the suit against county, state and school officials asked the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri to dismiss it without prejudice. Originally, the plaintiffs alleged the defendants participated in a conspiracy to deny the couple custody of their children which resulted in the man’s two children ending up in their mother’s home where they were allegedly physically and sexually abused.