9th District Congressman Outlines 2012 Priorities

Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer believes three main issues will dominate the U.S. Congress in 2012.

Luetkemeyer says the debt ceiling will be the most difficult.

The senate refused to take up many house bills that came across in the 2011 session. Luetkemeyer says 2012 probably won’t be any different.

Congress returns to Washington D.C. this week.

Congressman Sentenced for Acting as Foreign Agent

A former congressman from Michigan will spend a year and a day in federal priosn for obstructing justice and acting as an unregistered foreign agent.

Sixty-year old Mark Siljander of Great Falls, Virginia, was sentenced last week after he used his position in congress to lobby for the Islamic American Relief Agency.

The Western District Court of Missouri found that the former congressman lobbied after the Columbia based organization was hit with a specially designated terrorist organization tag, tying it to Osama Bin Laden, Al Qaeda and the Taliban.

The Islamic American Relief Agency funneled more than a million dollars to iraq in violation of sanctions during its history. Several IARA officials are also facing federal charges for funnelling the money.

Road Work for the Third Week of January

Checking the lake area road work for the week.

In Camden County, one lane will open Tuesday through Thursday on Route A between 54 and 7 for roadway maintenance.

In Miller County one lane will be open on Route 52 between St. Elizabeth and the Maries County line this week for a culvert pipe replacement. On the Route 52 bridge over 54 one lane will be open as crews repair the bridge.

And in Morgan County, one lane will be open on Route W between Route 5 and south Marvin Road for roadway maintenance.

Lake Area Chamber Backs Blunt McCaskill Boundary Amendment

The Lake Area Chamber of Commerce wants you to support a proposal from Senators Roy Blunt and Claire McCaskill. They’ve proposed an amendment requiring the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to amend the project boundary of the Lake of the Ozarks to a uniform 662′ elevation contour. The Lake Area Chamber of Commerce joins with the Camdenton Area Chamber of Commerce and the Lake West Chamber of Commerce in supporting this change to the project boundary of the Lake of the Ozarks. If you agree, the Lake Area Chamber encourages you to send your own comments of support to lake@ameren.com.

Lake Ozark Adopts New Flow Chart

The city of Lake Ozark is operating under a new flow chart as of this past Tuesday.

The city approved an organizational flow chart change at the board meeting, something City Administrator Dave Van Dee says will help with management.

Van Dee says the city now has control over job titles and pay scale.

The city also addressed job descriptions in the past few weeks.

Money Missing from Waynesville R-VI

No one’s talking, but an audit of financial records at the Waynesville R-VI School District show money’s missing from funds under the control of the district’s administrative offices. Pulaski County Prosecutor Kevin Hillman says he’s “….gotten a report on alleged theft of funds by an employee of the Waynesville R-VI School District.” The amount involved is reported to be $50,000. Published reports say the person who’s the subject of the investigation is a former elected county official who used to work for the district.

State Rep Wants Vets First for Filling State Jobs

State Rep. Jason Kander, a Kansas City democrat, filed House Bill 1265, the Veteran Workforce Act. It would give preference in filling open state jobs to veterans, disabled veterans and surviving spouses. State law already gives veterans a preference for merit positions. The bipartisan bill would extend that preference for veterans to non-merit positions. Kander says hiring a vet is not only a way of thanking them for their service, more importantly taxpayers know they are getting an employee who is trained, trusted and committed to public service.