Local Government

News covering policy and issues related to city and county governments in the Ozarks.

Springfield City Hall

For KSMU I’m Mike Smith, and this segment of our Sense of Community Series looks at the boom of Baby Boomer retirements and its effect on the City of Springfield. 

More than 100 to Attend Century Farms Salute

Sep 24, 2014
MU Extension

Committed to preserving the state’s agricultural history, the University of Missouri Extension each year honors farms that have been in the same family for 100 years or more. This year, Greene County is hosting its first Salute to Century Farms event.

Greene County Courthouse
Scott Harvey / KSMU

Greene County employees will receive a cost of living adjustment of three percent effective in October. The announcement on Thursday by the Greene County Commission marks the first salary adjustment for county staff in six years.

In a letter to employees, the commission noted that its fund balance is now at a level which allows for the pay raise. Credited was the advancement of its employee financial literacy goals and dedication and sacrifice of its workers.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

A vote on the City of Springfield’s non-discrimination ordinance will take place two weeks sooner than had been previously announced.

During public testimony on the bill this week, Mayor Bob Stephens said a vote by the council would take place Oct. 27. The city now says that vote will take place at its Oct. 13 meeting.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

Mayor Bob Stephens thanked citizens for their civility during a congested public comment period as the Springfield City Council on Monday night considered bills adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the city’s non-discrimination ordinance.

Springfield City Hall

A bill adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the City of Springfield’s non-discrimination ordinance goes before City Council on Monday.

The scheduled first reading of the bill comes more than two years after council tabled the controversial item and later formed the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Task Force. After months of review, the task force released its recommendations in November 2013.  

Springfield City Hall

The City of Springfield Community Survey gauges citizen satisfaction in various areas. KSMU’s Simone Cook has details on the results of this year’s survey, which is distributed every three years.

Alissa Zhu / KSMU

Springfield city officials have begun work to repair sight line concerns at the intersection of Bennett Street and Jefferson Avenue that prompted criticism earlier this summer.

According to a news release by the city, the northbound lane of Jefferson Avenue will be closed in the area directly south of Bennett Street beginning for bridge modifications. Lane shifts will be used to maintain one northbound lane and one southbound lane through the construction zone. Lane drops will be in place for approximately three weeks.

Andrew Magill / Flickr

The Springfield Fire Department will be able to accept a FEMA grant for safety equipment.  Springfield City Council unanimously approved a bill Monday, agreeing to pay a ten percent match.  The city’s share will be $$63,948 with federal funds totaling $575,538.

The money will be used to pay for 90 SCBA’s (self-contained breathing apparatus), which are needed when firefighters must enter smoke-filled buildings or when responding to chemical spills.

Andrew Magill / Flickr

Springfield City Council could decide tonight a bill that would provide money for safety equipment for the city’s firefighters.  KSMU’s Michele Skalicky has more.

The Assistance to Firefighters Grant is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Department of Homeland Security.  According to Springfield’s assistant fire chief, Dave Pennington, it’s a yearly grant application that allows fire departments to apply funds for tools and equipment for fire safety.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

The start of K-12 classes this week brought an uptick in morning and mid-afternoon traffic to Springfield. But as college courses resume next week, crews will still be working to complete construction along a major thoroughfare near the Missouri State University campus.

Rush hour has produced heavy congestion this summer at the intersection of Grand Street and Kimbrough Avenue, where crews have been performing repairs to aging utility lines. The $658,765 project is funded by the 1/8-cent Transportation Sales Tax.

(Logo courtesy City of Springfield)

The Springfield Art Museum will reveal a public art project Thursday, Aug. 14, titled “Springfield Neighbors.”  It was created by Memphis artist Richard Lou, and is intended to spark dialogue within the community regarding race, identity and diversity.