Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Greitens to deliver budget address at Nixa school

(From Gov. Eric Greitens)

On Thursday, Governor Eric Greitens will announce his budget for Fiscal Year 2018 via a budget address at a public school in Nixa, MO.

The Governor announced this decision via Facebook, saying:

On Thursday, we’ll roll out our budget. But we aren’t going to do it in Jefferson City. We’re holding our budget address in Nixa, in a public school facility that serves children with special needs.

Our state’s budget affects real people. And we take that responsibility seriously. It’s our job to decide how to distribute the money that comes in, and the truth is, less money is coming in. More and more of it is automatically put towards things like insider tax credits and costly health care spending.

Even as the state is asked to do more with less, our budget protects our top priorities: more jobs, higher pay, safer streets, and better schools.

This address in Nixa is a reminder of who we’re fighting for. We’re fighting for the kids in towns and cities across our state who don’t have a lobbyist. Children with special needs, whose parents need jobs to provide for them. Families that need to know that the men and women of law enforcement have the tools and training to protect them. That’s who we’re fighting for every day.

Governor Greitens Budget Address
Thursday, February 2nd
11:15 AM
Nixa Early Childhood Center
304 S. Little Eagle Drive Nixa, MO. 65714

McCaskill: I'm voting against Betsy DeVos

(From Sen. Claire McCaskill)

I was horrified while watching the confirmation hearing for Donald Trump’s nominee for education secretary, Betsy DeVos, and deeply troubled by Senate education committee’s action to advance her nomination this morning.

During her hearing, she refused to commit to protecting our students from campus sexual assault. She was wholly uninformed about laws that protect students with disabilities. And she was totally unprepared to address the prevalence of gun violence in our schools.

Most disturbing of all is what Betsy DeVos would mean for small towns and rural communities in my state – communities that rely on public education. Betsy DeVos never attended a public school. She’s never worked at a public school. She likes to talk about siphoning resources away from public schools so families have a “choice” – but in rural Missouri, good public schools are often the only choice families have. Our small towns don’t have the kinds of options available in urban centers.

If Betsy DeVos can’t commit to protecting all our students and giving them a safe and secure place to learn and grow, she doesn’t belong in that job. Period.

I’m voting against Betsy DeVos, and I need your help right now to make sure my colleagues do the same:

Add your name to tell the Senate: Don’t confirm Betsy DeVos!
Donald Trump promised to drain the swamp in Washington – this is not how you do it. I need you to join me in urging my colleagues in the Senate to vote “No” on Betsy DeVos.

Watch live- President Trump announces his Supreme Court nominee

Ed Emery: Giving public schools a grade will keep parents engaged

In his weekly podcats, Sen. Ed Emery, R-Lamar, addresses right to work and two education bills he has sponsored.

Emery, a strong supporter of the right to work bill that passed the Senate, says it will provide greater opportunities for Missouri workers.

"We'll see results right away."

Emery also touts his bill to give each Missouri school a letter grade. For some reason, he thinks this will "keep parents engaged." If he thinks that is all it takes to keep parents engaged, he knows as little about parents as he does about public schools.

Emery also talks about his education savings account bill. which will allow corporations and individuals to receive tax credits for donating money for "scholarships" that parents can receive to establish educational savings accounts to use to send their children to private schools, religious schools (though Emery does not mention that one in this podcast) and virtual schools. He starts it off by saying parents could use the money to send their children to another public school, though it is highly doubtful that is the outcome Emery and others who support this legislation are seeking.

Video- McCaskill presses HHS nominee Price on Medicaid block grants

Blunt calls on Senate Democrats to confirm Trump Cabinet nominees

Protesters at Blunt's Columbia office oppose Trump immigration order

Kansas City protesters fight against DeVos nomination

Monday, January 30, 2017

Gunshot victim faces pending charges, had drug charges dropped by Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney

One of the two victims of a shooting Sunday at 2334 East Zora, Joplin, is currently awaiting trial on a felony charge of assaulting a law enforcement officer.

The charges were filed following an August 28 incident in which Paul Haney, 19, dragged a Joplin police officer who had attempted to stop his motorcycle.

At the time of that incident, Haney was free on $20,000 bond on felony drug charges stemming from an April 10 arrest by the Jasper County Sheriff's Department. Bond was set at $5,000 on the assaulting a law enforcement officer charge and was paid almost immediately.

At some point since that arrest, it appears that the Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney's office dropped the drug charges since they are no longer shown on online court records.

Joplin Police have not released any information, other than Haney being shot, about his involvement in the activities at 2334 East Zora.

The details on Haney's still pending charge were featured in the following Joplin Police Department news release:

On Saturday, 08-27-2016 at approximately 1:00 AM, Sgt. Rusty Rives observed two motorcycles eastbound on 32nd St. from Wisconsin Avenue.

The motorcycles were going one-hundred and twenty-four miles per hour. (124 mph.) The two motorcyclists were recognized as subjects that officers had multiple interactions with, wherein they taunt the police in order to attempt to prompt a pursuit.

Later into the shift, Sgt. Rives again observed the motorcycles traveling north on Main St. from 32nd St. when Paul G. Haney drove into oncoming traffic at a southbound police unit.

Sgt. Rives waited on foot at 15th and Main St. Upon their return they were stopped at the light and Sgt. Rives, on foot, approached Haney.

Sgt. Rives attempted to take Haney into custody. Once Rives grabbed Haney’s hoody. He became entangled in it as Haney took off at a high rate of speed. Haney dragged Sgt. Rives several feet. As a result, Sgt. Rives’ shoulder was dislocated.

Sgt. Rives transported himself to the hospital where he was treated and released.

Multiple agencies, including Missouri State Highway Patrol, Jasper County Sheriff’s Office and Newton Country Sheriff’s Office assisted in locating Haney.

The Jasper County Prosecutor’s Office filed charges against Haney for Felony Assault on Law Enforcement and a warrant was issued with a $5,000 bond.

On Sunday, August 28, 2016, Haney was arrested by the Newton County Sheriff’s Office.

Nevada woman pleads guilty in food stamps for meth scheme

(From the U. S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri)

A Nevada, Mo., woman pleaded guilty in federal court today to her role in a conspiracy to exchange “food stamps” for methamphetamine or cash.

Julie M. Drake, 48, of Nevada, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute.

By pleading guilty today, Drake admitted that she participated in a conspiracy from Oct. 14 to Aug. 30, 2015, in Bates and Vernon Counties. Drake accepted Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, better known as “food stamps,” in exchange for methamphetamine or a percentage of the benefits in cash. Drake then used the EBT cards and PINs belonging to others to buy her own food.

Vernon County Sheriff’s Department officers executed a search warrant at Drake’s residence on Oct. 14, 2015. During a search of the master bedroom, officers found a purse that contained 22 baggies of methamphetamine, weighing approximately 100 grams, packaged for distribution. Officers also found two digital scales in the bedroom closet, as well as a safe that contained $4,720. Four EBT cards belonging to four other individuals were found on the dresser.

Investigators then reviewed video surveillance from the Wal-Mart stores in Nevada and Lamar, Mo., which showed Drake using the EBT cards found in her bedroom.

In interviews with federal agents, one of the recipients of the EBT cards admitted he used his EBT benefits to buy a quarter ounce of methamphetamine from Drake. He told investigators that a $55.94 transaction was payment for the methamphetamine, which would have cost approximately half the value of the transaction. Another one of the recipients admitted to selling his EBT benefits to Drake for 50 cents per each $1 in benefits. She would come to his residence to retrieve the EBT card, call the 1-800 number on the back of the EBT card to verify the balance, and then give him half of the value in cash.

Under federal statutes, Drake is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 40 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nhan D. Nguyen and Patrick Carney. It was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of Inspector General and the Vernon County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department.

Graves: Pro-life cause has new hope with President Trump

(From Sixth District Congressman Sam Graves)

After the inauguration of President Trump earlier this month, our pro-life cause has new hope, with allies across all parts of government in Washington.

It is estimated that there are more than 900,000 abortions performed in the United States every year. That is devastating, and something we should all be truly ashamed of.

But it is also a reminder that we must do more to protect the most vulnerable members of our society. And it’s something that Congress has already begun working to change with a pro-life White House on our side.

Last week, I helped pass H.R. 7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act of 2017, through the House of Representatives. This bipartisan bill creates a permanent, government-wide prohibition against using federal dollars to pay for abortions.

Additionally, I've been working to introduce a few other pieces of legislation that will help advance the pro-life cause.

The first is the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2017. In the last reported year alone, Planned Parenthood performed over 323,000 abortions and received over $550 million dollars in taxpayer funding - all according to their own math. Our bill will make sure that stops.

The second is the Conscience Protection Act, which prevents any federal, state, or local government from penalizing a health care provider that chooses not to offer or perform abortions.

In the 115th Congress, with a pro-life administration, Senate, and House of Representatives all united in the cause for life, we have an opportunity to make real, tangible differences in the lives of the unborn. I pledge to make the most of that opportunity, and will keep working to ensure these and other pro-life bills are signed into law by President Trump.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Judge dismisses Russian national's multi-million dollar lawsuit against Joplin businessmen

A federal judge last week dismissed a fraud lawsuit filed by a Russian national against former Joplin businessmen John Steven Vanderbol III, Scott Walker, and David Odell Boyer.

The dismissal was without prejudice, meaning that Artem Borisanov can refile at a later date.

Borisanov claimed that the three cheated him out of $3.53 million in a fraudulent scheme involving technology companies and gold belonging to the royal family of Thailand.

Borisanov's lawyer claim the Joplin residents "defrauded him out of $3.53 million through a complex and completely fabricated investment scheme which was perpetrated from Joplin."

Borisanov says the scheme began in 2012 when he loaned $1.25 million "to a company which was purportedly to sell gold owned by the Thai Royal Family." Months later, Borisanov says he was told the sale would not take place, but he was convinced to reinvest his money in high-tech companies "which allegedly had hundreds of millions of assets, intellectual property, and contracts worth billions of U. S. dollars."

Borisanov invested $3.53 million between 2012 and 2014.

The lawsuit claims there was never any contract to purchase Thai gold and that the companies with which Borisanov invested "had no assets, intellectual property, contracts or anything of significant value.

"Defendants stole Plaintiff's money through baldfaced lies and fraud."

The lawsuit offered details of several companies, all of which reportedly operated out of Joplin, but were incorporated in Nevada, Ireland, Thailand, and the United Kingdom. The main company appeared to be Zfere Holdings, which was organized in St Kitts and Nevis, which are Caribbean islands.

At first, the lawsuit claimed, the Joplin men told Borisanov of different opportunities, including a claim in November 2013 that Wall Street executives were "ready to invest $40 million. This was a fabrication. There were no Wall Street investors."

When Borisanov began asking for the return of his money, the lawsuit said, he was put off by claims that money had been embezzled and that the company was under investigation. Borisanov says those claims were false.

Trial canceled for former Webb City teacher on sex charge; hearing set for Monday

The March 28 trial date for former Webb City High School choir instructor Carrie Njoroge, who is charged with sexual contact with a student, has been canceled, according to online Jasper County Circuit Court records.

No reason for the cancellation was given, but the Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney's office has asked for a hearing Monday, which could be an indication that a plea deal has been reached.

Njoroge's trial was originally scheduled to begin October 15, 2015. She is represented by Dee Wampler, Springfield.

An after-hours sex act with an 18-year-old high school student led to criminal charges being filed against Njoroge, according to the probable cause statement.

The act allegedly took place Tuesday, April 15, 2014, in her office at the school. Two days later, school officials placed her on paid administrative leave. She resigned the following day, according to a statement from the school district.

The probable cause statement says that April 15 was not the first time Njoroge had sex with the student. He says the relationship began three months earlier.

The probable cause statement, written by Webb City Police Department Cpl. Josh Smith, is printed below:

On April 15, 2014, between the hours of 19:30 and 21:30 hours at 621 N. Madison, Webb City, Jasper County, Missouri, 64870 (Webb City High School), Carrie Njoroge, a Webb City High School choir teacher, had consensual sexual intercourse with an 18-year-old male student in her office. The student stated they participated in an ongoing relationship for approximately three months involving oral sex on multiple occasions and sexual intercourse on April 15, 2014.

Blunt on Trump immigration order: Our top priority should be to keep Ameica safe

Senator Roy Blunt issued the following statement on President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration:

“He (President Trump) is doing what he told the American people he would do. I would not support a travel ban on Muslims; I do support increased vetting on people applying to travel from countries with extensive terrorist ties or activity. These seven countries meet that standard. Our top priority should be to keep Americans safe.”

Video- Missouri House majority, minority weekly news conferences

Rogersville Republican on right to work passing: This is a great week for Missouri

Video- Senate week in review: Right to work bill passes

Kansas City protests target Trump immigration order

LInks provided for top Turner Report/Inside Joplin posts for past week

The promotion of South Middle School Principal Steve Gilbreth to an assistant superintendent position was the most visited Turner Report post of the week by a wide margin.

The number two post, which studied contributions from Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos and her family to Roy Blunt and Matt Blunt, was actually posted the week before, but kept receiving more and more interest as the days passed.

The Turner Report

1. South Middle School principal promoted to assistant superintendent position

2. Betsy DeVos and the Blunt connection

3. Amazon to start charging sales tax in Missouri

4. Missouri spends $1 million a year for prisoners to receive cable

5. Joplin R-8 considers combining sports at all three middle schools

6. Bill requires missing guns to be reported

7. Deborah Gould: Why I am running for school board

8. Roy Blunt: Trump wasn't slowed down by protesters

9. Washington Examiner; Billy Long in Trump's "circle of trust"

10. Starstruck Billy Long gets his tie autographed by President Trump

Inside Joplin

1. Carthage Police arrests suspect on burglary, meth charges

2. Joplin Police Department Weekend Arrests

3. Joplin woman arrested for DWI following accident on 249

4. Joplin residents taken to Mercy Springfield after car-moped collision

5. Jasper County Dissolution of Marriage Petitions

6. Joplin woman, Carthage man injured in crash on 43

7. Joplin Police Department Arrests January 25-26

8. Joplin Police Department Arrests January 23-24

9. Newton County Dissolution of Marriage Petitions

10. Jasper County Sheriff's Office Arrests

Inside Joplin Obituaries

1. Craig Fitzjohn

2. Michelle Stevens

3. Don Reeves

4. Doris Carson

5. John McClane

6. Frank Reiter

7. Shirley Orlando

8. Richie Dean

9. Bob Hudson

10. Leslie Story

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Greitens: Partnership with Trump administration will bring more, higher-paying jobs to Missouri

(From Gov. Eric Greitens)

Today, Governor Eric Greitens met with Vice President Mike Pence in the White House to discuss what the Trump-Pence Administration can do to help take Missouri in a new direction with more jobs and higher pay.

In a Facebook post following the visit, Governor Greitens said, "Today, I met with my friend, Vice President Mike Pence, to talk about the challenges facing Missouri and what we can do, together, to help people. The Trump-Pence administration understands that our state needs quality jobs again, and they are ready to partner in our success. They also understand the damage that Obamacare is doing to our families and our state's budget, and they promised that relief is on its way. I know that with a strong partnership between the White House and the Governor's office, we can take our state in a new direction with more jobs, higher pay, safer streets, and better schools for all Missourians."

Friday, January 27, 2017

Billy Long: It's time to start reining in regulation

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

Over the years, outgoing presidential administrations have pushed through last-minute rules that Congress can do little or nothing about. These rules are costly and have a significant negative impact on our economy. Since 2009, the estimated costs of these arbitrary regulations reached almost $2 trillion. The unelected bureaucrats in Washington aren’t the ones paying for the additional costs, hardworking American taxpayers are the ones who are paying for them.

I have talked with many small business owners in Missouri’s 7th Congressional District and their main concern is overregulation. The federal register boasts over 89,500 federal regulations, many of them outdated and ineffective. In the last year alone, over 4,000 regulations were working their way through the federal bureaucracy. Recently, President Donald Trump spoke with business leaders and said he is confident he can cut regulations by 75 percent, a comment that is a breath of fresh air to businesses everywhere.

My colleagues and I have made it one of our top priorities over the years to pass legislation that makes sure outgoing presidential administrations, regardless of their political party, can’t pass last minute rules and regulations that Congress cannot address. That’s why already this year I have supported bills such as the Midnight Rules Relief Act of 2017 and the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act.

The Midnight Rules Relief Act of 2017 would put in place a rapid-response method for Congress to undo last-minute rules from an outgoing administration. It would not require a minimum or maximum number of ‘midnight rules’ the Congressional Review Act can disapprove and would allow for Congress to group regulations together to overturn quickly in one single vote rather than making a potentially large number of tedious single votes.

The REINS Act requires agencies to submit any major regulations to Congress for approval, while also allowing for a quick up or down vote on the major rules within 70 legislative days. It also guarantees that any major regulation submitted to Congress must first be approved before going into effect.

A ‘major rule’ is any rule that will have an annual impact on the economy of $100 million or more, adds a significant increase in price or cost on consumers, individual industries or government agencies and negatively impacts competition, employment, investment, productivity and innovation.

The Midnight Rules Relief Act of 2017 and the REINS Act both create more accountability and ensure constituents have their voices heard. I’m confident that with the new administration and a unified Republican government, we will begin to weaken the federal government’s oppressive regulatory state on hardworking American taxpayers.

Starstruck Billy Long gets his tie autographed by President Trump

The Washington Examiner reports that a starstruck Seventh District Congressman Billy Long was able to leave the GOP's annual retreat in Philadelphia with a presidential souvenir:

Trump received numerous standing ovations when he addressed the Republican lawmakers on Thursday, and even obliged lawmakers such as Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo., who asked him to autograph their ties. But when he reiterated his plans to launch a federal investigation into his voter fraud beliefs, he received scant applause.

So you want to be a South Middle School principal

With the announcement of the promotion of South Middle School Principal Steve Gilbreth to assistant superintendent for learning services, there is an opening for a new principal.

Former North Middle School Principal Barbara Cox will take over next month as interim principal for the remainder of the 2016-2017 school year. The following advertisement for a new principal was posted Thursday on the district website:

Job Title:                   Middle School Principal

Location:                    South Middle School

Reports to:                 Superintendent

Classification:          Certified/Exempt

Term:                                     11 Months

The principal is the instructional leader for his or her building and is responsible for the daily operation of the building.

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills and abilities required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities
An individual who holds this position is responsible for:
  • Supervision of instruction
  • Evaluation of staff
  • Training of staff
  • Making hiring recommendations to the Board
  • General supervision of students
  • Supervision of student activities and events
  • Implementation of the professional development plan
  • Maintaining building records
  • Preparation and management of the building budget
  • Creation and update of student handbooks
  • Positive interaction with students
  • Administration of student discipline
  • Motivation of staff
  • Administration of meal service and the free and reduced lunch program in the building in conjunction with the Food Service Director
  • An individual who holds this position is expected to attend:
  • Board meetings
  • Student activities and events
  • IEP meetings

Supervisory Duties
Has supervisory responsibility over all building staff.

Master’s degree or higher in educational administration

Certificates, Licenses, Registrations
Valid Missouri principal’s certificate for the appropriate grade levels

Skills and Abilities

An individual who holds this position must have the ability to:
  • Present information to staff members, other administrators and the Board of Education
  • Respond to common questions and complaints
  • Interview students and staff
  • Read, analyze and interpret professional journals, government memos, Board policy, administrative procedure and statutes
  • Write newsletter articles, staff memos and ordinary business correspondence
  • Keep information confidential when required by law, policy or a particular situation

Ability to compute ratios, percentages and create and interpret graphs and figures

Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions

Basic computer word processing, spreadsheet and research skills

Ability to access and create reports using the district’s student information software

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this jobReasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.

Physical Demands
An individual who holds this position must frequently move in and around buildings and grounds to visit classrooms, attend meetings and supervise bus loading and unloading areas and sit for an hour or more at a time.

Must be able to hear a conversation in a noisy environment

Consistent and regular attendance is an essential function of this position

The work conditions and environment described here are representative of those that an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this jobReasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.

Conditions and Environment
The work environment is consistent with a typical office environment; however the individual who holds this position will occasionally be required to be outside in temperatures below freezing and above 100 degrees. The individual who holds this position is frequently required to work irregular or extended hours

Missouri spends $1 million a year for prisoners to receive cable

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Hawley challenges Obama Administration overtime rules

(From Attorney General Josh Hawley)

Attorney General Josh Hawley today challenged rules issued by the Obama Administration that would force small businesses to treat whole new classes of employees as “overtime” workers. Hawley and the Attorney General’s Office filed an amicus brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

“These regulations hurt workers, hurt small business, and hurt our Missouri economy,” Hawley said. “President Obama imposed them with no authorization under the law. I have said time and again that this Office will fight for Missouri’s workers, and that’s exactly what we are doing.”

The case, Nevada et al. vs. Department of Labor, involves a challenge to regulations promulgated by the Department of Labor that illegally subject much of the nation’s white-collar workforce to minimum-wage and overtime standards, even though Congress specifically exempted those workers by statute.

Missouri’s brief, joined by three other states, argues that the Department’s regulations run afoul of “longstanding clear-statement rules that the Supreme Court applies to safeguard constitutional values.”

“I look forward to seeing President Trump roll back these illegal, last-minute regulations,” Hawley said. “Missouri is ready to fight in court to protect our workers and businesses.”

The state of Missouri was joined by the states of Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming in filing the amicus brief.

Download the brief

Sullivan Republican presents Prescription Drug Monitoring Program legislation

(From Sen. Dave Schatz, R-Sullivan

This week, I presented one of my top priorities in the Health and Pensions Committee: Senate Bill 231, the Narcotics Control Act.

This legislation will establish a Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (known as a PDMP) in our state in an effort to combat the common practice of “doctor shopping” that drug dealers and addicts use to acquire pain killers and opioids. 

These prescription pain killers often lead to opioid dependence, which often leads to former patients turning to heroin as a cheap pain killing alternative. This epidemic is particularly acute in Missouri as we are the last state in the nation without a PDMP and so the nation’s doctor shoppers have made Missouri their home. 

Missouri is so far behind on establishing a PDMP that many counties have already moved forward in establishing their own. Counties like St. Louis, St. Charles, Jackson, Ste. Genevieve, and the cities of St. Louis, Independence and Kansas City have also moved ahead of our state and implemented PDMP. 

This means millions of Missourians are already living with this law, but millions more live in areas where doctor shopping is still relatively easy. 

A large portion of the 26th Senate District lies within St. Louis County and I have not heard any complaints from constituents in St. Louis County about the county’s PDMP. The support for establishing a PDMP has grown dramatically in recent years. 

Two years ago, our district survey placed support for the measure at 55 percent but in our most recent 2016 survey, support rose to 70 percent. 

Across the state, dozens of organizations in both health care and law enforcement have stepped up to join the pro-PDMP movement. 

A list of the organizations supporting Senate Bill 231 can be found here: http://mopdmpnow.com/about-us/coalition-members/. This committee hearing is just the beginning of the fight. My Transportation, Infrastructure, and Public Safety Committee will hear another PDMP bill that I filed in the coming weeks and I will be pushing to have this important issue come to the senate floor as soon as possible. 

It is far past the time for this bill to become law so that Missouri can join the rest of the nation in combating the opioid epidemic. I have personally seen the pain that opioid and heroin addiction can cause and that is why this issue is so close to my heart and is so important to me and to so many in our community.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Bellefontaine Democrat speaks make the case against right to work legislation

In the accompanying video, Sen. Gina Walsh, D-Bellefontaine, speaks about against SB 19, the right to work legislation.

Amazon to start charging sales tax in Missouri

Greitens forms committee to fix tax system

(Fron Gov. Eric Greitens)

Today, Governor Eric Greitens directed a team to fix the broken tax system that is hurting Missouri's budget and killing jobs. He first announced the committee via Facebook, with a post that reads:

“I have travelled all over the state of Missouri and held hundreds of town hall meetings with our citizens. From Hannibal to Joplin, Missourians asked me many things. But not a single person—not one—ever came up to me and said, “Could I get a special interest tax credit?”

For decades, special interests and lobbyists have received billions of taxpayer dollars in the form of tax credits. The people taking the money make big promises about jobs—but their performance hasn’t lived up to their pledges. Every year, more money flows out of this shadowy system into the pockets of insiders—and no one asks hard questions about how the system works, or doesn’t work, for the people of Missouri. If special interest tax credits made for a prosperous economy, Missouri would be thriving.

What our people want is a tax system that is simple, fair, and low. What we have instead is a tax system that is complex, corrupt, and high. So today, I signed an executive order to put an end to our broken tax system once and for all.

The Governor’s Committee for Simple, Fair, and Low Taxes is going to devote itself to fixing this system for the benefit of all people, not just the well-connected. Our argument is clear: A simple and fair tax system will help create jobs. That’s what I’m fighting for everyday: more jobs and higher pay.

The lobbyists and insiders will throw a fit, but we’re ready for the fight. They will spread falsehoods and myths, but we weren’t sent here to fight for them. We were sent here to fight for the people—and that’s exactly what we’re doing.”

Deborah Gould: Why I am running for Joplin School Board

(The following message was posted earlier today on Joplin R-8 Board of Education candidate Deborah Gould's campaign Facebook page.)

As a parent, my husband and I have learned to set high expectations for our children, whether in their schoolwork, chores or how they behave.

I am running for the board to continue the fight to maintain high standards while responsibly managing resources. The district must utilize existing resources with efficiency and effectiveness in order to keep academic standards high without unduly burdening taxpayers.

Being a long time member of the community and working for a Fortune 500 company for the last 24 years, I believe I can accomplish these goals. Like most managers in corporate America, my job is to maintain the highest quality standards within a budget. Joplin Schools can do the same. We must constantly evaluate operational costs, curriculum, and community needs to keep Joplin Schools competitive. 

I support improving academic achievement as a way of “helping” struggling students reach their full potential. 

I believe what comes out at the end of schooling is what goes on in the classroom every day. And no person is more influential in the day-to-day lives of students than the teacher in the classroom. We need to continue to develop communication with our teachers so they can continue to be the experts in their field. I want to continue to facilitate trust and transparency with all district staff.

I respectfully ask that you vote for me so that we can maintain high standards academically and fiscally. 

Thank you for your consideration.

Ed Emery bill would make all Missouri students eligible for vouchers

During a Senate committee hearing Wednesday, Sen. Ed Emery, R-Lamar, announced he was changing his education savings account bill, which had been limited to students with disabilities.

Under the new version, all Missouri families would be able to create savings accounts to cover the entire cost of sending their children to private schools, charter schools, virtual online schools, or for tutoring.

From all appearances, though the new version of the bill has not been placed on the Senate website yet, the new bill may even make home schoolers eligible.

From KOLR's report:

During a Wednesday Senate committee hearing, a number of free market and politically conservative groups lined up to support the proposal, including the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and the Missouri Century Foundation.

Also testifying in favor of the EDU measure were school choice advocacy groups such as Ed Choice, Families for Home Education and the Missouri Education Reform Council. One private citizen, Lisa Smith, said her children were forced to attend failing public schools for nine years.

Scott Kimble of the state School Administrators Association is against the measure, and points to a study of a voucher program Governor Greitens praised.

“That survey which was conducted by a pro-voucher group, found that Arizona’s voucher program, the program that the governor specifically referenced in his state of the state address, disproportionally served white students and those from more affluent families,” said Kimble. “The entire Arizona population is 41 % white, yet 76 percent of those participating in the voucher program are white. The median household income in Arizona is $50,000, yet over 60% using the voucher program are in higher income brackets.

South Middle School principal promoted to assistant superintendent position

During a closed session Tuesday night, the Joplin R-8 Board of Education approved the promotion of Dr. Steven Gilbreth, South Middle School principal, to the position of Assistant Superintendent of Learning Services.

Gilbreth, who has been principal at South (formerly Memorial) Middle School for the past 12 years, will assume his new duties February 6 and will be replaced at South by former North Middle School Principal Barbara Cox.

This is the second consecutive year that Cox has been hired to replace a departing principal for the remainder of the school year. Last year, she replaced former East Middle School Principal Bud Sexson at the end of the fall semester. Sexson was reassigned and then was not rehired at the conclusion of his contract.

Gilbreth's greatest challenge as a middle school principal came early in his tenure.

On October 9, 2006, a 13-year-old student brought an assault rifle into Memorial Middle School, shot one round at the ceiling and then pointed the gun directly at Gilbreth, who had stepped into the shooter's path in an effort to stop him and save the students, teachers, and staff in the building.

The teen's gun jammed, according to law enforcement officials and he was subdued.

Since that time, Gilbreth oversaw the move from Memorial to the new South Middle School, and became one of the few principals to survive the C. J. Huff/Angie Besendorfer administration.

The transition will not be that great for Gilbreth as he moves into the new assistant superintendent position. He has been handling many of the same duties all through this school year.

With his promotion, new Superintendent Melinda Moss, who is scheduled to begin her duties April 1, will now have two well-schooled district veterans, Gilbreth and former Joplin High School Principal Kerry Sachetta, in assistant superintendent positions.

Gilbreth began his career teaching technology, reading, and communication arts at North Middle School for five years. He was assistant principal at North for three years before becoming principal at Memorial.

Gilbreth received his bachelor’s degree from Missouri Southern State University in English Education, his master’s and specialist degrees in Administration from Pittsburg State University and his doctorate in Educational Leadership from Saint Louis University.

Billy Long votes for No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

Congressman Billy Long (MO-07) voted Tuesday in favor of the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2017. He released the following statement regarding his vote:

“The American people agree, taxpayer money should not be funding abortions,” said Rep. Long. “I've always made it a priority to support legislation that saves lives and that’s why I voted in favor of H.R. 7. In 1973 when the Supreme Court said it was legal to kill an unborn child I didn't agree then and I still don't. Someone needs to fight for those that can't fight for themselves.”

Kander: It would be easier to fake a moon landing than pull off voter fraud Trump is suggesting

(From former Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander)

Our new president has a self-esteem issue, and he's not happy about losing the popular vote by nearly 3 million votes.

But he's got a big lie to justify it: Trump is claiming 3-5 million ballots were fraudulently cast in the presidential election.

I talked with Jake Tapper on CNN about how it would be easier to fake a Mars landing than pull off the massive voter fraud scheme Trump is alleging.

Republicans have been telling the American people a version of this lie for a long time in order to justify extreme voter ID laws that ultimately suppress voter turnout. Trump’s lie is the biggest of all and has the potential to erode trust in our democratic system — which is the last thing we need right now.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Hartzler votes to ban taxpayer funding of abortion

(From Fourth District Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler)

Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Chairwoman of the House Values Action team, voted Tuesday in favor of H.R. 7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2017, a bill she is an original co-sponsor of, to stop taxpayer dollars from funding abortions.

“Taxpayers should not have to fund abortions,” Hartzler said. “It’s that simple. For four decades Congress has taken care to include the Hyde Amendment in its appropriations and funding measures to prevent taxpayer dollars from going toward an abortion. This legislation codifies that provision, adding certainty and uniformity.”

The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act stipulates that federal funds cannot be used to pay for abortions or to purchase insurance plans covering abortion. The restrictions imposed by the bill would not apply, however, if the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest or if the mother is in danger of death. Further, the measure would allow providers to offer insurance plans that cover abortion and would allow consumers to use private dollars to purchase separate plans.

“We should invest in women’s healthcare, not abortion,” Hartzler continued. “We should save lives, not take them. This bill protects life – of the unborn as well as the mother – while ensuring the majority of Americans who are morally opposed to their tax dollars going towards abortion are not footing the bill.”

Hartzler spoke on the House floor in support of the bill. You can watch her remarks here.

H.R 7 passed the House by a vote of 238-183, and now goes to the Senate for consideration.

Video- Tonight's Joplin R-8 Board of Education meeting

Joplin R-8 considering combining sports at all three middle schools

(From Joplin Schools)

The Joplin Schools Athletic Department invites you to an Athletics Parent Forum.

The purpose of the forum will be to discuss with the parents of our middle school athletes a proposal to combine the teams of all three Joplin Middle Schools into one Joplin team in the future.

The forum will begin at North Middle School, Wednesday, January 25 at 6:00pm in the Auditorium, at East Middle School, Monday, January 30 at 6:00pm, in the Auditorium, at South Middle School, Wednesday, February 1 at 6:00pm, in the Auditorium.

Parents of Middle School athletes and parents of 6th graders who plan to participate in athletics are strongly encouraged to attend. We are looking forward to hearing your opinions on the matter.

Bill requires missing guns to be reported

Monday, January 23, 2017

Roy Blunt: Trump wasn't slowed down by protesters

NEA; Three reasons Betsy DeVos is unqualified to be secretary of education

In the accompanying video, NEA explains why it feels President Trump's nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, is unqualified.

Poplar Bluff Republican explains bill mandating tougher penalties for crimes against law enforcement, first responders

Graves looking forward to working with GOP Senate and White House to "make America great again"

(From Sixth District Congressman Sam Graves)

On the day he was inaugurated America's 16th President, Abraham Lincoln addressed the nation during one of the most trying times in its history.

"We must not be enemies,” he said on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. “Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature."

The worst times were still ahead for President Lincoln and the country he was tasked to lead in 1861, but even 150 years later, those words are worth repeating.

On Friday, I was fortunate to take part in the inauguration of President Donald Trump. More than anything, the inauguration represented the best in American democracy - the peaceful transition of power.

It was not a celebration of one man or one political party, but instead a celebration of the system of representative democracy that must be cherished and preserved in this country. The belief in self-governance that allowed our country to flourish into the most free and prosperous nation the world has ever known.

But now, with the inauguration over, the Trump White House and Republican-led Congress must get to work on some of the most pressing problems we face in this country. From national security and healthcare reform, to economic growth and balanced budgets, there is certainly a lot that lies ahead. And I need your help to do that. Please take a minute to fill out this survey and tell me your priorities for President Trump’s first 100 days in office.

I look forward to working with a Republican Senate and White House as we set out to Make America Great Again.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Washington Examiner: Billy Long in Trump's "circle of trust"

An article in the Washington Examiner names Seventh District Congressman Billy Long as one of eight members of Congress who are in his "circle of trust" and who are having "surrogate powers" delegated to them:

A former radio talk show host, Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo., considers himself the band's "soothsayer."

"I saw what the American public was saying," Long said. "I was afraid [those in the Republican establishment] were going to try and steal it from Trump. This is the same brain trust that gave us President Dole, President McCain and President Romney."

After seeing the huge crowds Trump was attracting and sensing the country's mood, Long, who never officially endorsed anyone, said he decided early on he would not endorse anyone. Yet he boosted Trump in conversations with people, wrote supportive op-eds and encouraged colleagues to do so.

Links provided for top Turner Report/Inside Joplin posts for the week

The nature of blogs is that the posts that are most widely read are the latest ones that were published, especially since those are the ones that are the top of the page.

Since I started doing these weekly top 10 lists several months ago, it has been rare for a post to make the top 10 in two consecutive weeks.

But there has been one post that keeps coming back, at least three times that I can recall during these past few months.

It is not even a recent post. It dates back to September 16, 2010. This time that post titled "The Seduction of Roy Blunt" not only jumped back onto the list, but was the top Turner Report post for the week by a wide margin.

I have no idea what the reason for that is, though it could have something to do with Blunt's prominence during the inauguration ceremonies.

That was not the only old post to make the top 10 this week. Apparently, while viewing "The Seduction of Roy Blunt" many people noticed another post that was published that day. That post, which landed at number nine was about former Attorney General Chris Koster's decision to appeal a court decision about the Westboro Baptist Church.

Roy Blunt made the Top 10 list in a second post, coming in at number seven with the Turner Report investigation on the connection between Donald Trump's Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos and Blunt and his son, former Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt.

The links for the top Turner Report/Inside Joplin/Inside Joplin Obituaries for the week can be found below:

The Turner Report

1. The seduction of Roy Blunt

2. Joplin woman uncovers evidence that leads to man's indictment for having sex with 11-year-old girl

3. Greitens announces $146 million in spending cuts

4. Federal grand jury indicts Joplin man on weapons charge

5. U. S. Attorney: Joplin man should be held without bond on child pornography charge

6. Four candidates have filed for Joplin R-8 Board seats

7. Betsy DeVos and the Blunt connection

8. Judge restores Mercy McCune-Brooks administrator's driving privileges

9. Attorney general will appeal Westboro Baptist Church decision

10. Fifth candidate files for Joplin R-8 Board

Inside Joplin

1. Carthage Police Department needs these people identified

2. Webb City Police recover Boomer, return stolen dog to owners

3. Police seeking to identify this suspect in strong-armed robbery at Joplin Target store

4. Joplin Police: 14-year-old girl missing

5. Joplin Police: Do you recognize this man?

6. Joplin man charged with DWI following accident on 43

7. Joplin Police Department Weekend Arrests

8. Joplin Police need help in identifying these fraud suspects

9. Joplin Police: Missing 14-year-old located, is safe

10. Jasper County Dissolution of Marriage Petitions

Inside Joplin Obituaries

1. Adam Deras

2. Michael Blake

3. Sondra Bottorff

4. Michael Hosp

5. Ezekiel Clark

6. Allen Comstock

7. Sharon Tanner

8. Luthericia Dosher

9. Gary Doerge

10. Carl Sturgeon

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Betsy DeVos and the Blunt connection

After watching the confirmation hearing of President Trump's Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos, it was painfully obvious that she knew little or nothing about education.

For decades, the DeVos family has contributed millions to candidates in her efforts to push vouchers and unregulated charter schools, and it should come as no surprise that some of that money has made its way to our own Sen. Roy Blunt, who undoubtedly will vote to confirm DeVos.

Federal Election Commission records show Blunt received $29,300 from the DeVos family for his successful re-election campaign last year. The family contributed $8,800 to Blunt six years earlier.

But Roy Blunt's financial connection to Betsy DeVos runs far deeper than the $38,100 he received during his two campaigns.

In 2004, Betsy DeVos provided the money that enabled Blunt's son, then Secretary of State Matt Blunt, to barely defeat former State Auditor Claire McCaskill for governor.

At the time, DeVos headed the pro-voucher group All Children Matter, which was started by the DeVos family and billionaire John Walton, a member of the family that owns the Wal-Mart empire.

At the time Missouri had campaign finance limits in place, but there was
no limit to the money someone could use to pay for advertising opposing a candidate. During the final weeks of that 2004 gubernatorial campaign, All Children Matter spent $196,252.33 on attack ads against McCaskill, according to Missouri Ethics Commission records.

Blunt defeated McCaskill, who had defeated incumbent Gov. Bob Holden in the Democratic primary, by a margin of 51 to 49 percent.

When openings occurred on the State Board of Education, the new governor appointed people who were clearly not friends of public education.

Blunt's first appointment in March 2006 was Debi Demien, Wentzville. Though Demien had spent a short time as a public school teacher, that was in her rear view mirror for years by the time of her appointment to the state board.

Demien was director of marketing for Building God's Way, which built churches and Christian schools.

In 1999,, she wrote a book entitled Stealing America, the National Takeover of the Economy, Education and State Governments, which primarily criticized the school-to-work programs being used in public schools. She was an outspoken critic of Missouri's A+ program, which allows students involved in the program to receive free schooling at Missouri community colleges.

Demien headed a group called Restoring America's Way which fought against the separation of church and state. Restoring America's website at that time prominently featured an article on "the sin of sending kids to public schools."

On October 26, 2006, Blunt appointed Donayle Whitmore-Smith, 38, St. Louis to the board. Whitmore-Smith was head of the pro-voucher group Coalition for School Choice, a fact that Blunt failed to mention in his news release announcing her appointment.

Whitmore-Smith, the news release noted, was the founder of Ptah Academy of Arts and Science. That and her position with Coalition for School Choice were the only connections she had with education, but as impressive as her academy credential sounded, the reality was not quite as convincing.

An October 5, 2001 St. Louis Post-Dispatch article described a day at the academy:

"The ribbons of incense and the children who meditate beneath them at the start of each school day leave no doubt that the Ptah Academy of Arts and Sciences isn't your typical school."

The academy is named after an ancient Egyptian god and "includes of elements of ancient spiritualism in its instruction," according to the Post-Dispatch article, which continues, "The school is not religious, Whitmore said, but it does encourage children to tap in to their 'spiritual energy.' 

"The article indicated the school featured "yoga, organic meals, tai chi and daily 'inner studies' or sessions of meditation" in its curriculum.

In a February 2005 article in the pro-voucher publication School Reform News, Ms. Whitmore-Smith said that she had attended private schools until high school and her experience at a public school was "hell." Ms. Whitmore-Smith said, "Academically, it just couldn't match what I'd been getting (in private schools)."

Nevertheless, Blunt pushed Whitmore-Smith for the position, claiming she was a supporter of public schools.

Governor Blunt's chief of staff Ed Martin told the Post-Dispatch that any thought that Ms. Whitmore-Smith would be anti-public education was ridiculous:

"If we thought that, she wouldn't be on the state board of education, because the governor is committed to public education," Martin said.

Before becoming Blunt's chief of staff, Martin worked for Betsy DeVos, as the attorney for All Children Matter.

Eventually, Whitmore-Smith was withdrawn from consideration, but that did not stop Blunt from attempting to stack the board with pro-voucher members.

On December 14, 2006, Blunt appointed Rev. Stan Archie, a voucher proponent and private school administrator,

If Blunt had opted to run for a second term and been elected, it was likely the entire board would have been filled with voucher supporters and it would have all been made possible by the financial support of Betsy DeVos.

Now the DeVos blueprint for destroying public education can be put into effect for the entire nation, with the complete and wholehearted support of Senator Roy Blunt.

Available Now!

Sounds from the St. Louis women's march

More than 1,500 attend Mid-Missouri Solidarity March and Rally in Columbia

Thousands show for Kansas City Women's March

Ron Richard: Senate will debate right to work, paycheck protection this week

(From Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin)

State lawmakers gathered in the House chamber Tuesday evening for the governor’s first State of the State address. The governor spoke for about 40 minutes, during which time he laid out his legislative priorities for 2017. At the top — enacting meaningful tort and labor reform and creating stable, well-paying jobs for our citizens. I am pleased to say both chambers are already hard at work advancing legislation that complements the governor’s agenda.

The Senate Committee on General Laws voted to send two labor reform bills to the floor for debate: Senate Bill 19 will make Missouri the next Right to Work state, while Senate Bill 21 will enact Paycheck Protection. The House has moved even faster on Right to Work; earlier today, it overwhelming passed House Bill 91, which is identical to the Senate version. While Missouri’s future status as a Right to Work state is not yet a done deal, it certainly looks more promising than it has in a long time, and I hope to see a bill on the governor’s desk very soon.

In addition to Right to Work, the governor also called for an end to the discriminatory and unfair practices of Project Labor Agreements (PLAs). Missouri taxpayers deserve the best product for the best cost, but PLAs drive up the cost of construction by effectively excluding nonunion contractors and their skilled employees from building projects paid for by their own community’s tax dollars. Oftentimes, PLAs place unreasonable terms and conditions to limit fair competition. They are not equitable to all contractors, and they are a detriment to the free market. If signed into law, Senate Bill 182 would prohibit PLAs.

Of course, labor reform is just one part of the equation when it comes to promoting job growth and economic development. We also need to address our legal climate. During his speech, the governor talked about the need for serious tort reform, stating that “our judicial system is broken, and the trial lawyers have broken it…” On Tuesday, I presented Senate Bill 5 to the Committee on Government Reform. This legislation modifies several provisions relating to tort actions, such as unlawful merchandising practices, class actions, venue and products liability.

At its core, SB 5 is about making it more difficult for trial attorneys to bring forth frivolous lawsuits, which force Missouri businesses to waste valuable time and money defending meritless claims. Those costs eventually get passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices. By passing substantive tort reform, we can finally shed Missouri’s ranking as the “No. 1 judicial hellhole” in the country and become a state that is truly open for business.

As I have previously stated, our new governor’s determination to transform the way Missouri does business is a refreshing change after eight years of failed economic policies and stagnant job growth. This truly is a new era in Missouri. I support the governor’s proposals, and I look forward to working with his administration as we build a better, stronger Missouri.

Agenda posted for Tuesday Joplin R-8 Board of Education meeting

The Joplin R-8 Board of Education will meet 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Memorial Education Center. The meeting will be preceded by a closed session at 6 p.m. to discuss legal action, real estate, personnel issues, and preparation for negotiations with employee groups.

The agenda for the regular session is printed below:

A. Call to Order

1. Roll Call

B. Pledge of Allegiance
C. Approval of Agenda - Action

D. Reports

1. Board President's Report

a. Celebrations - Info. (Jeff Koch)

b. BOE Policy Committee Update - Info. (L. Banwart & J. Martucci)

c. BOE Data Analysis Committee Update - Info. (J. Koch, S. Dermott & L. Musser)

d. BOE Finance, Salary, and Benefits Committee - Info. (Dr. Fort & J. Martucci)

e. BOE Safety Committee - Info. (Dr. Fort & C. Sloan)

2. Superintendent's Data Report

a. School Board Recognition - Info. (Dr. Ridder)

b. Health and Dental Care Insurance Reports - Info. (Paul Barr)

c. Financial Statements - Info. (Paul Barr)

d. New Superintendent Orientation - Info. (Dr. Ridder)

E. Public Comments Regarding Agenda Items 

F. Consent Agenda - Action

1. Minutes - Action (Pat Waldo)

2. Personnel Recommendations - Action (Dr. Lankford)

3. Policy Update Second Reading - Action (Dr. Ridder)

a. Policy JGGA: Seclusion, Isolation and Restraint

4. Local Tax Effort (LTE) Billbacks - Action (Sandra Cantwell)

5. Joplin Early Childhood (JEC) Architect Contract Amendment for Reimbursable Expenses - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

G. Regular Agenda

1. Accounts Payable - Action (Paul Barr)

2. Policy Update First Reading - Action (Dr. Ridder)

a. Policy BCA: Board Organizational Meeting - Action

b. Policy BCB: Board Officers - Action

c. Policy BCCA: MSBA Delegate and Alternate - Action

d. Policy BDDH: Public Participation at Board Meetings - Action

e. Policy EBAB: Hazardous Materials - Action

f. Policy EBAC: Integrated Pest Management - Action

g. Policy JHCB: Immunization of Students - Action

h. JHG: Reporting and Investigating Child Abuse/Neglect - Action

3. FTC - Economic Development Administration (EDA) Grant for Diesel Mechanics Program - Action (Dr. Ridder )

4. Elementary Chromebooks - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

5. Plus/Delta - Info. (Dr. Ridder)

a. Plus: What did we do well

b. Delta: Opportunities for Improvement

H. Adjourn