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Missouri Government News for Week of Sept. 16, 1996

Secretary of State switches decision on term-limit ballot issue.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Friday that Secretary of State Bekki Cook has decided that a petititon drive involving Congressional term limits had gotten enough signatures for the ballot after all.

Ten days earlier, Cook announced supporters had failed to get enough signatures and that her office was conducting an investigation into possible fraud.

The proposal would require that the election ballot indicate whether a congressional candidate supported congressional term limits.

Cook's decision may not put that proposal on the November ballot, however, unless the courts order otherwise. Cook's changed decision came after the legal deadline for certifying issues for the November ballot.

Gubernatorial campaign debates scheduled

Four debates have been scheduled this fall for the campaign for Missouri governor.

The first debate will be held Oct. 7 on the St. Louis campus of the Unversity of Missouri.

In the meantime, the GOP candidate - State Auditor Margaret Kelly - scheduled for September 25 the kickoff to her campaign.

Lagging far behind Gov. Mel Carnahan in campaign contributions, Kelly had said she would limit her campaign to the last six weeks before the November election.

Governor proposes tax credits for college tuition.

Gov. Mel Carnahan has proposed tax credits for college tuition and fees for the first two years in school.

The credits, which require legislative approval, would be phased in during a three-year period starting in 1998. When fully implemented, up to $1,500 in tuition and fees at either public or private schools would be covered.

For more details, see:

GOP Columbia office firebombed.

On the same day Elizabeth Dole came to Columbia to make a speech, the GOP headquarters in Columbia was firebombed.

The incident prompted a Secret Service investigation.

See our radio story with digital audio for details.

GOP endorses independent for Congressional seat

The state GOP Executive Committee has endorsed the widow of Missouri's 8th District Congressman -- rather than the person who won the GOP primary.

The executive committee endorsed Jo Ann Emerson.

Her husband, Bill Emerson, had died after the deadline for filing for the office. Thus top-name Republicans had not filed for the primary.

For more information and digital audio, see our radio story.

Highway deaths increase with increased speed limits.

Missouri's Highway Patrol reports there have been 56 more highway deaths so far this year compared to the same period last year -- before the higher speed limits went into effect.

But the Patrol says the higher death rate is not necessarily because of the higher speed limits that went into effect earlier this year.

See our radio story for more details.

Mo. Congressional races get Clinton's attention.

Congressional races are being cited as the reason for Pres. Bill Clinton's recent campaign visits to Missouri.

A top spokesman for the Democratic National Committee says Clinton's lead in his own race could help in the Congressional races.

Click here for our complete story with digital audio.

Bumper crop for farmers predicted.

Despite predictions of a poor harvest in the Midwest, Missouri's Agriculture Department says the prospects look a lot better for many Missouri farmers.

Bumper crops are predicted in some areas of the state because of the wet, cool summer.

See our radio story with digital audio for details.

Shake-down under way at state pen.

After recent incidents of violence at Missouri's penitentiary, prison officials have begun a cell-by-cell search.

Guards are being brought in from other prisons do conduct the searches for weapons and other contraband.

Click here for the story with digital audio for more details.