Analysis: Mo. business tax break has wide reach
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A tax-cut bill pending before Missouri Governor Jay Nixon would create a special deduction for thousands of business owners.
Nixon has criticized the measure as a giveaway to lawyers and lobbyists. But that may be oversimplifying the issue.
The legislation would phase in a 25 percent deduction for business income reported on personal tax returns. Many lawyers and lobbyists would benefit because of the way their businesses are structured.
But so would the overwhelming majority of Missouri businesses. The tax break also would benefit many local restaurant and retail stores, doctors, accountants, landscapers, car dealers, construction companies and others.
Business associations that support the tax deduction say it's the best way to provide tax relief to employers. But some economists have questioned its effectiveness and fairness.
Pepsi MidAmerica bringing jobs to Missouri
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) - Pepsi MidAmerica is expected to bring about 74 jobs to southeast Missouri when it becomes the first tenant in a Cape Girardeau (juh-RAHR'-doh) business park.
The Southeast Missourian reports that a $3.1 million customer service center will be built on 18 acres at the site. Construction begins in the next six months. The center is planned to be open by mid-summer 2015 at the park, which the city bought from Southeast Missouri State University in 2012.
The facility will distribute items from Pepsi's snack division, including Pepsi beverages, Starbuck's coffee, Gatorade and Frito Lay products.
Pepsi MidAmerica, headquartered in Marion, Illinois is the largest privately held Pepsi franchise in the nation and was offered an economic incentive package if it meets job creation and investment criteria.
Columbia City Council no longer volunteers
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Columbia City Council members will receive some compensation for their service, beginning in May.
Voters have approved an annual stipend of $6,000 for council members and $9,000 for the mayor.
Council members say the money will help pay for incidental costs and perhaps attract more people to the job.
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports the stipend works out to $4.32 an hour for the mayor and $2.88 for council members if they work 40 hours a week - and members say they often work that much on council business.
Mayor Bob McDavid, who is 67 and retired, says he hopes the stipends will attract younger people and those who couldn't afford to serve strictly as volunteers.
BJC changes charity care standards
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Charity care has long been a core mission of BJC HealthCare, but the St. Louis area's largest employer is cutting back amid increasing financial pressures.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that BJC has changed the "upper level of eligibility" for the charity care it provides. Beginning January 1st, BJC reduced the pool of patients eligible for financial assistance to those earning up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level. The previous cap was 400 percent.
Spokeswoman June Fowler says the change also requires uninsured patients to provide, as a minimum, co-pays for medical services.
Fowler says BJC changed its charity care policy "to be supportive of the Affordable Care Act" in part by providing navigators to help people obtain health insurance on the federal marketplace.
St. Louis priest accused of abuse released on bond
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A 31-year-old St. Louis priest accused of sexually abusing a grade school student has been released on bail.
The Reverend Xiu Hui "Joseph" Jiang is charged with two counts of first-degree statutory sodomy involving a boy younger than 14. He's accused of sexually abusing a male student at St. Louis Cathedral School. His lawyer has said Jiang denies the allegations.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Jiang was released on bail Friday from the city jail. Bill Hannegan, a friend of Jiang's, said another supporter posted the $150,000 bond but declined to identify the person who provided the bail money.
The Archdiocese of St. Louis suspended Jiang from duties pending the case. He previously had been accused in Lincoln County of contact with a teenage girl. That case was dismissed.
Ozarks survivor of Pearl Harbor dies
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) - The last known Pearl Harbor survivor living in the Ozarks has died.
The Springfield News-Leader reports William Martin died last week at age 90. His family said Martin died in the Missouri Veterans Home in Mount Vernon.
Martin was 18 when Japanese planes bombed a U.S. naval base in Hawaii on December 7th, 1941. Martin, a gunner's mate on the USS Nevada, told the News-Leader in 2010, he had plans to tour the Hawaiian island early that morning, but when the planes attacked he said he jumped behind his anti-aircraft gun and started firing. He lost one eye in the attack, and was awarded the Purple Heart in 1988.
Martin spent six months recovering in a San Francisco hospital before being discharged from the Navy and returning to Springfield.
GAS STATION SHOOTING
Kansas City shooting kills dad, paralyzes son, 10
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Kansas City police are investigating a shooting that killed a 34-year-old man and left his son paralyzed.
Police say Kavyea Curry was found shot to death Friday night in a car at a gas station. Police spokesman Captain Tye Grant says Curry's 10-year-old son was critically wounded in the shooting and paralyzed from the chest down. A second 5-year-old child who was in the car was unwounded.
Grant says the suspected gunman approached Curry's driver side window on foot and shot several times through the window striking both Curry and his son, who was in the front passenger seat.
Police have released surveillance video showing the suspected gunman walking up to to Curry's car, and they're asking anyone with information to call police or the TIPS Hotline, 816-474-TIPS (8477).
Man killed in St. Charles county home fire
ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) - Authorities say a 63-year-old man has died in a mobile home fire in rural St. Charles County.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Gerald Dorlac died in the fire early Saturday.
The sheriff's department says a deputy who arrived first on the scene suffered smoke inhalation trying to get inside and save the man from the burning mobile home. Sergeant Jeff Ochs says the deputy was treated at a hospital and released.
The state fire marshal office is investigating the cause of the fire.
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