A Red Cross volunteer says about 75 percent of Joplin is just gone, after a deadly tornado ripped through the city, last night. The State Emergency Management Agency continues to deploy all available response teams. Dozens of people are reported dead. Search and rescue continues, today. If you are interested in volunteering, call 2-1-1. And, if you have medical skills and can help, log on to showmeresponse.org
The Lake Area Chamber Beautification Committee wants to erect a huge sign at the northeast entrance to the lake, similar to the Lake of the Ozarks sign at Highway 54 and Business 54. The preliminary design has six to eight foot tall lighted letters made of steel, placed into the rocky hillside on a piece of state owned property at the Expressway and 54. MoDOT would have to grant a permit for plans to move forward. The project would cost around 50-thousand dollars.
Total devastation. That’s how Governor Jay Nixon described the scene in Joplin, last night. He’s activated the Missouri National Guard to respond to tornadoes and severe storms that ripped through the state. Dozens of people are reported dead. The Governor declared a state of emergency and activated the State Emergency Operations Center. Representatives from local agencies are headed there to help. Saint John’s Regional Medical Center took a direct hit. Rubble, no power for critical patient care, fires reported throughout the facility. Residents in Dade County, 70 miles away, found X-Rays and medical records from Saint John’s in their yard.
A house under construction but almost completely finished was lost to fire, this weekend. Osage Beach fire crews were called to the blaze on Westhoff Drive in the Oak Creek subdivision. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Damages are estimated at one million dollars.
A Fort Leonard Wood man was sentenced to ten years in prison for a 2008 traffic accident. John Harrison was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for the death of 21 year old Ashley Parks of Gravois Mills. She was a passenger in his car. Harrison was driving while intoxicated, lost control on a curve, hit a fence and the vehicle flipped over.
Today, the House and Senate Apportionment Commissions will hold their next round of public hearings on redistricting. Members are looking for public testimony on the proposal for redrawn district lines based on changes in population reported by the 2010 Census. Today’s hearings are in Springfield. Later this week, the Commissions will gather public comment in Kansas City and Saint Louis.
Miller County Commissioners meet with a representative from FEMA, today to have road repairs inspected and close out the FEMA Disaster claim, from February.