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News to Know (6/22/21)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A big win for college athletes. In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court ruled the NCAA’s strict limits on benefits to student-athletes violates Federal Anti-Trust Law. The ruling focuses on how schools reimburse players for things such as computers, science equipment and musical instruments. The narrow ruling does not directly address athlete compensation, but it could ultimately change the landscape of college sports.  Supreme Court win for college athletes in compensation case

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – A court trial over Missouri officials’ refusal to expand Medicaid is underway. Voters last year amended the state constitution to expand access to the health insurance program to hundreds of thousands more low-income adults, including three women who are now suing Governor Mike Parson’s administration. The governor says he won’t expand Medicaid because the legislature refused to pay for it. Two single mothers and another low-income woman in response sued to force Missouri to provide coverage as called for in the state constitution. Missouri governor drops voter-approved Medicaid expansion

JOPLIN, Mo. – The Joplin City Council herd a presentation on an alternative mode of transportation, scooters. Bird scooters, specifically. They’re looking to come to town. The scooters utilize an app. That app allows residents to rent the scooters for a short period of time. When the person who is traveling by scooter is done, they leave it for the next rider or to be picked up by a Bird contractor for repair or charging. Last night the city council decided to move forward on negotiations with Bird scooters. Current 4-State scooter programs receive positive reviews

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Kan. – Harvest is underway in the 4-States and hay season is in full swing. Use caution when traveling around farm trucks, tractors, combines, or other implements. First, don’t assume the farmer knows you are there. Pass with extreme caution. When a farm vehicle pulls to the right side of the road, it does not mean it is turning right or allowing you to pass. Due to the size of some farm equipment, the farmer must execute wide left turns so allow it plenty of room and time to turn. Be alert to see if they might be turning into a driveway or field. Don’t assume that a farmer can move aside to let you pass.

KOAM InstaPoll: Do you participate in Amazon Prime Day? http://koamnewsnow.com/vote

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KOAM News to Know (6/21/21)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Biden is back at the white house as the nation inches closer to his goal of having 70-percent of adults at least partially vaccinated by July 4th. The highly contagious Delta variant of the virus has now been identified in more than 40 states and could soon become America’s dominant covid threat. The president is due to travel to North Carolina this week to encourage people to roll up their sleeves.

MONTGOMERY, Al. – Storm watches and warnings are up all along the Carolina coasts…as a deadly storm system heads northeast.  Claudette is being blamed for several deaths, including nine children, in Alabama. The children, all from a youth ranch, were riding in a vehicle that crashed on Interstate 65 about an hour South of Montgomery.

MIAMI, Okla. – Plenty of people packed Miami’s Riverview Park pavilion Saturday, all for the Miami NEOK Pride 2021 celebration. Organizers say they wanted to bring people together as a show of equality, tolerance, and love. The event featured tons of cool things to check out, including local vendor booths, drag pageants, live music, a dj, and plenty of activities for the kids. One attendee tells KOAM, she came to the event to celebrate who she is and show that same support to others in her community.

CARL JUNCTION, Mo. – The Carl Junction Chamber of Commerce held its annual Expoland. The business expo is an opportunity for area businesses and organizations to get out into the community and let people know about what they do. The event was for all ages, and had activities for kids such as a balloon artist. One non-profit aimed at promoting adult literacy was at the event to spread the importance of their mission. The chamber says the event gave businesses from all over the area including, Joplin, Neosho, and Carthage a chance to come to Carl Junction and interact with parts of the community they normally wouldn’t. Carl Junction’s Expoland helps out local businesses

KOAM InstaPoll: What do you think of the “For the People Act?” http://koamnewsnow.com/vote

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BJC, Washington U. to require vaccinations for employees

ST. LOUIS – Two of the largest employers in the St. Louis area have announced they will require employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by fall. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that BJC HealthCare and Washington University both announced the vaccination requirements on Tuesday. The announcement comes at a time when demand for vaccines is waning in Missouri, a state that already lags behind the national average in COVID-19 immunization rate. The St. Louis region’s three other major health systems – SSM Health, Mercy and St. Luke’s Hospital – have not issued vaccine requirements but say they are discussing the issue.

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Missouri state workers given day off for Juneteenth

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri state offices will be closed Friday to commemorate Juneteenth, which has been designated as federal holiday.

The Missouri Office of Administration announced the changes on Thursday, after President Joe Biden signed a federal law recognizing Juneteenth. The new holiday commemorates July 19, 1865, when freed slaves in Galveston, Texas, learned the Civil War was over and they were free – two months after the Confederacy had surrendered.

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News to Know (6/18/21)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Obamacare has survived another major legal challenge. The Supreme Court dismissed a third effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. The court ruled seven-to-two that Texas, along with other Republican-led states and two individuals had no right to bring their lawsuit in federal court.

JOPLIN, Mo. – A Joplin man gets life in prison with the possibility of parole for killing his son’s long-time girlfriend. Rickey Lamb pled guilty to Second Degree Murder back in April in the death of Sarah Tyminski. It happened in June of 2019. The Newton County prosecutor says Lamb told authorities he went to his son’s house to scare him over a custody dispute. Authorities say the men then exchanged gunfire and Lamb shot his son’s girlfriend Sara Tyminksi. Lamb says he believed Tyminski was going to get a weapon. Joplin man pleads guilty in 2019 murder of Sarah Tyminski

NEODESHA, Kan. – An international company is bringing its first North American facility to Neodesha, Kansas. Sicut Enterprises is the European market leader in recycled plastic composite railroad ties. The company is buying the vacant Neodesha Plastics Facility for its North American manufacturing hub, and bringing with it, 135 jobs. The Kansas Department of Transportation has provided a $300,000 grant to build a rail spur to connect the railway to the building.

JOPLIN, Mo. – As we head into summer, we may be enjoying more activities outdoors. But it’s important to note the risks associated with too much sun exposure. One Freeman Hospital Emergency Room doctor says although people may be going to pools to cool down, it’s still possible to get overheated and dehydrated in the water. To stay hydrated you should drink a minimum of eight to ten glasses of water a day, if you are outside, that number goes up to ten to 12 glasses. Also take a break about every hour. How to stay safe in the summer heat

KOAM InstaPoll: Should congress repeal the authorization of military force in Iraq? http://koamnewsnow.com/vote

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Missouri responds defiantly to Justice Dept. over gun law

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri’s Republican governor and attorney general said in a defiant letter to the U.S. Department of Justice on Thursday that they stand by the state’s new law that would ban police from enforcing federal gun rules.

(Previous article: Justice Dept.: Missouri governor can’t void federal gun laws)

Gov. Mike Parson and Attorney General Eric Schmitt wrote that they still plan to enforce the new law, which Parson signed Saturday. The measure would penalizes local police departments if their officers enforce federal gun laws.

Schmitt and Parson wrote that they will “fight tooth and nail” to defend the right to own guns as spelled out in the state constitution and the new law.

“We will not tolerate any attempts by the federal government to deprive Missourians of this critical civil right,” they wrote.

In a letter sent Wednesday night and obtained by The Associated Press, Justice Department officials pointed out that federal law trumps state law under the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause.

Brian Boynton, an acting assistant attorney general at the Justice Department, said in the letter that Missouri’s law threatens to disrupt the working relationship between federal and local law enforcement and noted that the state receives federal grants and technical assistance.

Prosecutors in Missouri’s attorney general’s office have already withdrawn from nearly two dozen federal drug, gun and carjacking cases in St. Louis, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. They had been working with federal counterparts as part of the Safer Streets initiative that Schmitt touted in 2019. Attorneys from Schmitt’s office were deputized as assistant U.S. attorneys to help prosecute violent crimes.

Missouri’s new law would subject law enforcement agencies with officers who knowingly enforce federal gun laws to a fine of about $50,000 per violating officer.

Boynton said Missouri’s law “conflicts with federal firearms laws and regulation” and that federal law would supersede the state’s new statute. He said federal agents and the U.S. attorney’s offices in the state would continue to enforce all federal firearms laws and regulations. He asked that Parson and Schmitt clarify the law and how it would work in a response by Friday.

Schmitt is running for U.S. Senate.

Republican lawmakers who pushed Missouri’s new law said they were motivated by the potential for more restrictive gun laws under Democratic President Joe Biden. But state Democrats argued that it is unconstitutional and would likely get overturned if challenged in court.

Similar bills were introduced in more than a dozen other states this year, including Alabama, Arkansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Wyoming, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia and Iowa. In Texas, the governor has called for the state to become a so-called Second Amendment sanctuary.

Several states passed similar laws under then-president Barack Obama, though judges have ruled against them.

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News to Know (6/17/21)

JEFFERSON, Mo. – The Justice department issues a warning to officials in the state of Missouri that it can’t ignore federal law. This comes after the signing of a Missouri bill last week that bans police from enforcing federal gun rules. The DOJ says the “Supremacy Clause” in the U.S. Constitution outweighs the measure signed into law Saturday. The letter sent to Governor Mike Parson and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt says the state must clarify the law to the federal government.

LONE TREE, Co. – Two people are dead after a plane crash in Colorado. The plane took off from Neosho, Missouri. The Federal Aviation Administration says the single-engine aircraft, which took off from Neosho, hit power lines and crashed while approaching the airport in Lone Tree, Colorado. First responders say they found two human bodies at the crash site. They have not yet been identified. A dog also died. Investigators from the NTSB and the FAA are looking into the accident.  Neosho, MO resident among two dead in Colorado plane crash

PITTSBURG, Kan. – A person is taken to the hospital after a crash on the Highway 69 bypass near Centennial in Pittsburg. An officer on the scene says a semi and car crashed head-on and the truck burst into flames. That truck was carrying recycled paper products. The semi driver appears to be ok. The driver of the car has been taken to the hospital, there’s no word on the extent of the injuries.

JOPLIN, Mo. – For the first time in more than 50 years, a hotel will be opening in downtown Joplin. The Robertson Hotel was first opened in 1917, and served as a bustling part of downtown Joplin into the early 2000’s. It’s been closed for a number of years, but is about to get a new lease on life. Radisson Hotel Group America’s just signed the building onto their Radisson Individual’s line of hotels. The company hopes to have renovations complete by the fall of this year. Joplin’s Robertson Apartments to be transformed into business class hotel

KOAM InstaPoll: Should NCAA athletes be allowed to earn money from their name, image and likeness? http://koamnewsnow.com/vote

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Mt. Vernon man dies after his canoe overturns

STONE COUNTY, Mo. – A canoe accident claims the life of a Mt. Vernon, Missouri man.

It happened on Tuesday afternoon on James River in Stone County, about a half mile downstream from the Hootentown Access.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the canoe overturned while fighting the current going upstream. 87-year-old Willis B. Hull was thrown from the boat and drowned.

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News to Know (6/16/21)

GENEVA, Switzerland – President Biden is meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland today. The summit’s agenda includes election interference, cyber attacks, and Ukraine. The sit down is the final event of President Biden’s eight-day visit to Europe, his first overseas trip since taking office.

JOPLIN, Mo. – A judge sentences a Joplin man to more than 600 years behind bars child sex crimes. 62-year-old Daniel Franklin was convicted in April of three counts of statutory rape, three counts of statutory sodomy, two counts of child molestation, and one count each of enticement of a child and unlawful use of a weapon. In total Franklin is sentenced to 628 years in prison. Judge gives Joplin man 600+ years for child sex crimes

JOPLIN, Mo. – Drivers in Joplin, get ready for some big changes along range line road as MoDot says there’s an overpass they need to replace. The railroad overpass crosses over the Kansas City Southern railroad tracks, which is a part of the problem with the bridge. According to MoDot, it’s two feet too short for double stacked freight trains. The plan is to replace the bridge which could take some time to complete. In addition to the bridge project, they’ll be adding sidewalks to the bridge and connecting them with sidewalks running from Braums to 32nd street.

JOPLIN, Mo. – Child care services are struggling to fill open positions as the industry faces a shortage in caregivers. At Wee Tots Child Care Center, the owner says several people set up interviews for an open position and then wouldn’t show up for their interviews. And at the Learning Tree Preschool and Childcare, they’ve been looking to fill three positions for a few months. That means they can only keep 24 kids when normally they could have more than 70. Child care services struggle to fill positions as worker shortage continues

KOAM InstaPoll: Do you feel stressed out at your job? koamnewsnow.com/vote

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Nebraskans hurt when boat explodes at Lake of the Ozarks

SUNRISE BEACH, Mo. — Five people suffer serious injuries after a boat explosion at the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol says it happened Tuesday afternoon near Sunrise Beach. The patrol says they had the boat secured at a dock when a mechanical problem caused a fuel-related fire.

James and Kari Hohenstein, Brad Vanwinkle and two children aged 12 and 16 suffered serious injuries. A 2-year-old suffered minor injuries.

Emergency personnel flew the 16-year-old and Vanwinkle to a Columbia hospital. They took three others to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The people on the boat are from Gretna and Elkhorn, Nebraska.

The boat was a 2007 26FT SEARAY SUN DECK.