Governor Bob Holden has set August 7th as the special election date to fill three vacant seats in the Missouri House. Vacancies are to be filled in the 3rd, 7th, and 67th Legislative Districts. The vacancy in the 3rd District, in northwest Missouri, came about as a result of Representative David Klindt resigning to run for a seat in the Missouri Senate. Another vacancy in northwest Missouri was created when Representative Jewell Patek resigned to move to Washington, D.C. The vacancy in the 67th District, in St. Louis, was created when Representative Pat Dougherty resigned to run for the Missouri Senate.
Archives for March 2001
With Opening Day rapidly approaching, the St. Louis Cardinals trimmed their roster down on Thursday. In the most surprising move, righthander Alan Benes was sent to Triple A Memphis to start the regular season. Benes had allowed just six earned runs in 14 2/3 innings. The Cardinals also released veteran outfielder Quinton McCracken and third baseman Shane Andrews.St. Louis opens the regular season Monday afternoon in Colorado.
Charlie Spoonhour is returning to coaching. The former head coach at St. Louis University and Southwest Missouri State has come out of retirement to take the head coaching job at UNLV. Spoonhour signed a three-year deal with the Runnin’ Rebels, reportedly worth $400-thousand a season. The 61-year old Spoonhour had retired from college basketball following the 1998-99 season in St. Louis. During his 16-year Division One coaching career, Spoonhour has won 319 games.
The Southwest Missouri State Lady Bears battle Purdue tonight in the NCAA Women’s Final Four. SMS is 29-5 heading into tonight’s game and led by guard Jackie Stiles. The all-time leading scorer in Division One women’s basketball history is averaging close to 31-points a game this season. The Lady Bears are making their second appearance in the National Semi-finals. The first was in 1992. SMS and Purdue have never played before. Tonight’s game tips-off at 6:00 p.m. in St. Louis. The other National Semi-final between UConn and Notre Dame will follow.
The Senate has approved a $240-million interim state budget bill that includes $127-million from the national tobacco settlement. The spending package would carry the state through June 30th. The House has already passed a version of the budget bill that does not cover the shortfall. differences between the two versions will likely be worked out in conference negotiations.
Talking with hands is being advocated as a for-credit course in our schools. The Missouri Commission for the Deaf is behind an effort to have American Sign Language designated a distinct language and believes the learning of A.S.L. should fulfill foreign language requirements at colleges and universities. The Commission believes the proposal also would remove what it feels is a second class citizen status of American Sign Language. The move is being championed in the Legislature by State Senator Sarah Steelman of Rolla.
There are times a sports story transcends the world of athletics. Such is the case with the Southwest Missouri State University Lady Bears basketball team, which begins Final Four play tonight in St. Louis. The success of the Lady Bears is being talked up in the nation’s capital. Both Senator Christopher Bond and Senator Jean Carnahan took to the floor of the Senate this week to sing the praises of the team, in general, and superstar Jackie Stiles, in particular. Bond said Stiles is much more than a basketball player; she is a role model. He called her a Missouri sports legend, putting in the same class as baseball players George Brett and Mark McGwire, football players Derrick Thomas and Kurt Warner, and golfer Payne Stewart.
The Missouri Republican Party is accusing Governor Bob Holden and the state Democratic Party of playing political games over the legality of a sitting member of the Legislature being a member of a state commission. Representative Mark Richardson of Poplar Bluff, a Republican, has been selected by the Governor to sit on a commission considering legislative redistricting. He was chosen after withdrawing his name from consideration when it was learned there might be a legal roadblock to his being a commission member. The state G-O-P says Governor Holden chose Richardson in a bid to force the Representative to choose between his House seat and his seat on the commission. Richardson has already said he plans to remain in the House. That creates a “vacancy” on the commission and the Governor willhave to appoint a replacement – likely a Democrat.
Members of the Missouri House have given tentative approval to a prescription drug plan that would protect senior citizens from financial ruin. It’s a catastrophic plan that kicks in after seniors pay the first $1,500. It carries a price tag of $70-million. Another House vote is needed before the legislation can move to the Senate.
As she prepares for the Purdue Boilermakers, SMS standout Jackie Stiles received some more kudos yesterday. Stiles was named the top women’s college basketball player in the country by ESPN The Magazine as well as the top shooting guard. Stiles is averaging close to 31 points-a-game this season and is the all-time leading scorer in the history of Division One women’s basketball. Stiles and the Southwest Missouri State Lady Bears battle Purdue in the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament Friday night at 6:00.