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NewsBook: Missouri Government News for Week of October 15, 2001

 


. The Capitol Dome will be lit this weekend, but it comes with a cost (10/18/01)
JEFFERSON CITY - The Capitol Dome will be lit pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

But it wasn't cheap. The administration says it cost $7,000 to rewire the dome for the lights, although the money came from private donations.

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    . The state decides against adding extra security for state ID equipment. (10/17/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - Despite the theft of equipment used to manufacture state IDs, the Missouri Revenue Deepartment has decided against requiring buglar alarms in department fee offices.

    Shortly after the Sept. 11th attacks, buglars broke into a fee office in St. Louis county and stole both equipment and supplies used to manfucture driving licenses and state IDs.

    The equipment, which remains unrecovered, was stolen after the fee office had removed its buglar alarms.

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    . Fear over bioterrorism could result in traumatic stress (10/18/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - The national fear over mail-order anthrax and the on-going war against terrorism could lead to post traumatic stress syndrome, according to state health officials.

    The recent media blitz on bioterrorism -- criticized as excessive by some media critics -- could also be adding to the rapidly increasing depression, stress and anxiety in Missourians.

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    . New mail opening procedures for capital (10/17/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Bob Holden's office has instituted mail opening procedures, following Wednesday's report of anthrax being found in New York Gov. George Pataki's office.

    Suspicious packages, including mail without return addresses and mail from foreign nations or Trenton, NJ will be scruitinized, according to the governor's spokesman

    Holden's office also suggested that all state agencies use mail handling procedures that include opening mail in an area isolated from other employees and providing protective gear -- such as masks, safety glasses and latex gloves -- for employees opening mail.

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    . Lab Tests for Anthrax in Missouri Turn Up Negative (10/17/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - About thirty samples suspected of Anthrax have tesed negative for the disease.

    An additional fifteen samples were brought in for testing on Wednesday to the Missouri State Health Lab.

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    . Jefferson City Post Office Has An Anthrax Scare (10/16/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - Postal workers were weary of a white substance found on a bundle of packages and immediately contacted Jefferson City Police.

    While lab tests ruled out anthrax, supervisor Donald Knoth says recent circumstances have lead to increased precautions.


    . two city buildings are closed in Knob Noster due to possible hazardous material (10/16/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - The Police Department and City Hall are closed in Knob Noster until Thursday.

    A resident found a suspicious substance on an envelope. Now the Missouri State Health Department is investigating.

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    . State Auditor Claire McCaskill charges the Missouri's Caring Communities Program of having major failures (10/16/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - The State Auditor says the Caring Communities program fails to set measurable goals and show its accountability. The idea of the program is good, says McCaskill, but its implementation needs major changes.

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    . The Missouri Health Department is looking into 30 possible cases of anthrax (10/16/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - A spokeswoman for the Missouri Department of Health says the department is investigating about 30 possible cases of anthrax.

    The spokeswoman asks residents to call local law enforcement rather than public health if they suspect they may have been exposed to anthrax.

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    . Missouri's Revenue Department is taking no extra measures to protect state licensing equipment. (10/16/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - A spokeswoman for the Missouri Department of Revenue says the department is taking no extra steps to secure state drivers license and ID-making equipment from theft.

    The spokeswoman says the department has simply reminded its offices to adhere to security measures already in place.

    Last month equipment, software and materials used to make state IDs were stolen from a department fee office in Overland, Missouri.


    . New steps for handling mail coming into the Capitol (10/15/01)
    JEFFERSON CITY - A meeting is scheduled for Thursday on precautionary steps when handling suspicious mail coming into the Capitol.

    This comes after a letter sent to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle tested positive for Anthrax.

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