Jefferson City | KBIA

Jefferson City

Meiying Wu/KBIA

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP)- The City Council in Missouri's capital city has approved removing a Civil War marker dedicated to a Confederate general amid a dispute about the accuracy of its description. The marker is dedicated to Confederate Gen. Sterling Price. It claims that Price had planned to attack Jefferson City in October 1874 but eventually bypassed the city. Critics questioned that version of events. They also noted the marker was dedicated in 1933 by a chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which had strong ties to the Ku Klux Klan.

A Missouri lawmaker is asking Gov. Mike Parson to prevent the state from reinstalling a statue of a Roman goddess on the dome of the state Capitol. Rep. Mike Moon, a Republican from Ash Grove, says in a letter to the governor that the statue of Ceres is a “false god" and should not be displayed on the Capitol dome.

The state spent $400,000 to renovate and repair the statue, which has topped the dome since 1924. It is scheduled to be returned to the dome on Monday.

Tolton High Principal Not Renewing Her Contract

Dec 11, 2019

Gwen Roche, principal at Father Tolton High School, will not be renewing her contact for the 2020-21 school year.

The announcement, in a press release Wednesday from the Catholic Diocese of Jefferson City, comes after Doug Callahan was let go from his position as school president in late October.

School president and principal are the top two administrative positions at the high school.

Bishop W. Shawn McKnight has enlisted the help of Partners in Mission to fill the leadership positions at the high school, according to the release.

Adrienne Luther sits on a bench outside KBIA.
Isabel Lohman

Sometimes an artist just knows a person’s going to love their work. Jefferson City native Adrienne Luther knows when people ask her to doodle their cat, she’ll win their hearts.

But Luther does more than just doodle cats. She makes portraits, lettering and logos. She doesn’t want you to think she’s a starving artist. After all, thanks to Instagram, she’s not.

“I think when people think of people who are full-time artists, they think of people that have a stockpile of paintings that they haven't sold, that are just piled up in their sunroom, and who, you know, are just like smoking weed and painting all the time,” Luther said.

While Luther has a sunroom, she’s often in coffee shops making her art.

“The internet has really allowed me to stay afloat,” Luther said. “So I can just put something up on Instagram and sell it there. So I'm constantly hustling, but it's really fulfilling.”

Luther used to follow friends on her Instagram but felt it was becoming draining. She didn’t want to feel in competition with everyone, so she decided to only follow artists.

“My relationship with Instagram has really evolved,” Luther said. “And it was really scary at first to post my art because it felt vulnerable, and I didn't know what the hell to put in a caption.”

Once she started to just “be weird” with her posts, Luther said her work really took off. The Instagram story feature helped as well. Now, her followers are mostly in Columbia, St. Louis, Kansas City and Jefferson City.

“The engagement feels a little bit more authentic," she said, "than if I was just interacting with thousands of strangers."

Historic City of Jefferson executive director ANNE GREEN and board member LOIS HOGAN take us on a virtual walk through Jefferson City's historic Forest Hill Avenue neighborhood, highlighting the six houses taking part in this year's annual Homes Tour! Plus, find out how the city is cleaning up after May's devastating tornado. September 6, 2019

If you have unused and/or expired drugs in your home, getting rid of them is not as simple as throwing them in the trash. Council for Drug Free Youth's JOY SWEENEY recommends Dispose Rx, a powder substance that "deactivates" the medicine right there in its bottle. June 20, 2019

The Food Bank of Central and Northeast Missouri's popular 'Float Your Boat' fundraising event returns to Bass Pro Lake April 27. CHRISTA HOLTZCLAW tells us why the whole family should take part. "It's a blast!" Also, The Little Theatre of Jefferson City opens 'Mamma Mia' next Thursday for one weekend only. Meet director GABRIELLE WITTENBERGER and actor JERICO WHITAKER. (3:59) February 7, 2019

Authorities have arrested a second suspect in the shooting death of the student body president of a historically black college in Missouri.

Police in Jefferson City, Missouri, announced Tuesday in a news release that 19-year-old Michael Bouchee was taken into custody overnight in Texas on a second-degree murder warrant in the death of Lincoln University senior D'Angelo Bratton-Bland, who is from Chicago.

state capitol
Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

 The Missouri Senate approved an amendment to the state constitution that would ban lobbyist gifts to lawmakers.

The measure, passed Wednesday in a 20-12 vote, would also change legislative term limits to allow lawmakers to serve more time in one chamber. If the amendment is approved by the House, it will go to voters.

The gift ban was a longtime priority of Republican Gov. Eric Greitens, who signed an executive order more than a year ago banning lobbyist gifts to his own employees.

Sarah Kellogg

The House General Laws Committee has passed a bill allowing firearms in current “gun free zones” along with other legislation concerning guns.

Of the eight bills that had public hearings on Monday, five passed through committee Tuesday evening. The voting mostly went by party lines, with all five Republican sponsored bills and one Democrat-backed bill passing the majority republican committee.

This includes a bill that allows firearms without a conceal and carry permit into current gun free zones such as bars, hospitals and churches.

Missouri State Capitol Renovations Begin This Week

Feb 26, 2018
KBIA/file photo

  Renovation work on the State Capitol building in Jefferson City begins next week.

The Jefferson City News-Tribune reports the nearly $29 million project is expected to start Friday. It will involve restoration of most of the Capitol's exterior stone work.

Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

A Joplin man who was appointed to the Missouri Board of Education and then blocked from voting on the fate of the state education commissioner is suing Gov. Eric Greitens.

In a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Cole County, John Sumners asks the court to determine if he remains a board member and whether Greitens broke the law by rescinding his appointment earlier this month.

Sumners publicly alleged in mid-November that the governor's staff pressured him to vote to during a board meeting Nov. 21 to replace education Commissioner Margie Vandeven.

Missouri transportation officials say this year's spike in Amtrak ridership continued to rise from July through October.

The Jefferson City News Tribune reports the state Department of Transportation found a 5 percent growth in the number of Amtrak riders on the twice-daily trains at the Jefferson City station. The department counted nearly 13,950 riders this year, compared to about 13,330 riders last year.

File / KBIA

A former Missouri lawmaker is arguing to the state's Supreme Court that she shouldn't have to pay $230,000 for alleged campaign finance violations.

An attorney for former St. Louis Democratic Sen. Robin Wright-Jones told judges Tuesday that the charge amounts to an unconstitutionally excessive fine by the Missouri Ethics Commission.

A lawyer representing the commission said the amount is an appropriate fee for a couple hundred thousand dollars of expenditures and contributions the candidate failed to accurately report by state deadlines.

File / KBIA

Public defenders are raising concerns after the Missouri Supreme Court disciplined an attorney with a large caseload of indigent clients and then told another public defender that she must ask permission before denying additional cases.

Missouri State Public Defender Director Michael Barrett said the two decisions have created a conflict. The first ruling was issued last month and led to a Columbia-based public defender being placed on probation for a year for neglecting clients. Barett blamed the issue on the attorney having too many cases.

Dave Ingraham / Flickr

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is headed to the United Kingdom and Switzerland on his second trade mission.

Greitens is leaving Monday on a trip that will include meetings with government officials, business executives and workforce development leaders. In a news release, Greitens' office said he chose the nations because he sees an opportunity to increase trade, investment and educational and cultural ties. Spokesman Parker Briden said Department of Economic Development acting director Rob Dixon and other staff members will accompany the governor.

Former Jefferson City NAACP Chapter President died last Tuesday.  Nimrod Chapel, Sr. was 76 and died from a recent stroke. 

A longtime civil rights advocate, Chapel sought to protect voter rights for African Americans.  Chapel was the first African American to receive a degree in the Construction Management when he graduated from Oklahoma State University.  The NAACP Lifetime Service Award recipient established NAACP units in prisons and at Lincoln University in Jefferson City. 

mikecogh / Flickr

  JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Lawmakers are questioning checks and balances in Missouri prisons following reports of employee harassment and costly settlements.

Potosi Republican Rep. Paul Fitzwater said the Corrections Department has been policing itself.  

The agency fell under scrutiny after the Kansas City alternative weekly The Pitch reported on harassment and discrimination claims by prison employees. Some say they were retaliated against.

The paper reported the state's paid more than $7.5 million in related settlements and judgments from 2012 to 2016.

All Lanes of Jefferson City Bridges Now Open

Nov 16, 2016
Paul Sableman / Flickr

All lanes of Route 54 and Highway 63 on the Missouri River Bridge in Jefferson City are now open. The Missouri Department of Transportation opened the eastbound side of the bridge Sunday afternoon and the westbound side of the bridge Friday. Construction on the bridge began May first. 

MoDOT Central District Construction and Materials Engineer Patty Lemongelli said residents have been inconvenienced enough and MoDOT is glad the bridge is reopened.

TRIM Grant Brings More Trees to Missouri

Oct 12, 2016
blmiers / Flickr

The Missouri Department of Conservation recently awarded more than $380,000 to communities across the state from the Tree Resource Improvement and Maintenance, or TRIM, grant program. Jefferson City and Columbia were both awarded funding.

Jefferson City received more than $22,000. The money will go toward creating an inventory of trees to determine which are safe and which are in danger of collapsing.

jefferson city
localozarkian / flickr

  Efforts to build a bridge to improve riverfront access in Jefferson City have hit a stumbling block.

The Jefferson City News-Tribune reports that the Missouri Department of Transportation has determined that the city is ineligible for a $400,000 federal grant.

Open Enrollment Boosts Summer School Attendance

Jun 15, 2016
Evan Thomas / KOMU

Jefferson City Public Schools made the decision this year to allow open enrollment for summer school to all preschool through eighth-grade students in the Jefferson City area. Last year only students attending JCPS and who needed remediation were allowed to enroll.

This change has increased participation by 40 percent. During the first week of summer school, 2,786 students attended classes, 804 more than last year.

Amy Berendzen, director of school-community relations for JCPS said the district made this change because it had the space.

KBIA/file photo

JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri voters could get to decide whether to re-impose limits on the money flowing to political candidates and committees.

Supporters of campaign contribution limits said Wednesday they had submitted more than 272,000 petition signatures to try to get a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot.

The measure would cap donations to candidates at $2,600 per election. Contributions to political parties would be capped at $25,000.

Missouri Capitol
Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

JEFFERSON CITY - A contested Missouri measure, SJR 39, to protect businesses that deny services for same-sex weddings has been voted down.

The measure failed to advance Wednesday on a 6-6 vote in a House committee. It had previously passed the Senate.

The legislation drew opposition from LGBT-rights activists and some business leaders, who cited economic backlash in other states with laws perceived as discriminatory toward lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

File Photo / KBIA

JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri lawmakers appear uninterested in Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's proposal to end the business "border war" between the two states.

Brownback last week offered to reduce his state's efforts to lure jobs away from the Missouri side of the Kansas City metropolitan area if Missouri's lawmakers would in turn weaken a law they approved in 2014 addressing the issue.

Russian police have stepped up the search for an American student who went missing on a hike in the mountains on Sunday. 

File Photo / KBIA

JEFFERSON CITY - The House has endorsed a bill creating a grant program to attract more conventions to Missouri.

Lawmakers gave initial approval Wednesday to a measure authorizing grants for large conventions that could cover up to half the operating expenses. Eligible conventions would have to draw at least half their attendees from out of state, and their grants would be tied to how many hotel rooms their attendees are expected to fill.

The fund would be capped at $3 million annually.

KBIA/file photo

JEFFERSON CITY - Lawmakers have trimmed about $7.3 million from Missouri's mid-year budget increase of nearly $500 million.

A House panel approved the reductions Wednesday along with limits on Governor Jay Nixon's travel expenses and less flexibility in how some health care funds are spent. Proposals for soil erosion projects and a grant program for ethanol-blended fuel pumps were also reduced.