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House approved FY 2015 Defense Appropriations Bill

Posted June 26, 2014 at 12:31 pm

Good Day,

I was honored to bring together a panel of experts on human trafficking as I hosted a summit aimed at increasing awareness of this horrific crime and providing tools for action to address this form of human slavery.

Those who came to the well-attended Summit on Human Trafficking, held at Missouri United Methodist Church in Columbia, heard that while it is easy to think of human trafficking as something that takes place only in big cities or in other countries, this appalling crime is taking place right in our own backyard. In fact, the Department of Justice’s Western District of Missouri alone is currently prosecuting 15 cases involving human trafficking.

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    Bill to protect families of fallen soldiers at funerals

    Gov. Jay Nixon signed House Bill 1372 to protect the families of fallen Missouri soldiers at funeral services. The bill, which was passed unanimously by both the Missouri House and Senate, is patterned after a local Missouri city ordinance that was upheld by the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.

    House Bill 1372 specifies where a person is prohibited from protesting, and specifically defines the prohibited protest activities. Restrictions in this area were prompted by protests at funerals of Missouri soldiers by members of the Westboro Baptist Church from Topeka, KS.

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    Bat monitoring team visits state parks


    by Tom Uhlenbrock

    Missouri State Parks

    The third walk back into the woods to check the mist nets proved the charm. An eastern red bat was tangled in the fine mesh of the net stretched over a trail, and a big brown bat was caught in the net over a shallow stream.

    The two bats were placed in cloth bags and gently carried back to the parking lot at Hawn State Park. Under the glare of headlamps, they were inspected for age, weight, health

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    EarthTalk® E – The Environmental Magazine

    Dear EarthTalk: Is the gray wolf still endangered in the United States and how successful have re-intoduction efforts been? – Loren Renquist, Salem, OR

    The gray wolf is still considered “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). But a June 2013 proposal by the Obama administration to “delist” the animals-save for a small struggling population of Mexican gray wolves in Arizona and New Mexico-could change that if finalized later this year.

    Gray wolves were added

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    June grass growth doubles

    Grass is growing in June just like it should have in May, says Rob Kallenbach, University of Missouri Extension forage specialist.

    Usually, pasture grasses grow best in May, but not this year. Cool weather slowed growth.

    Haymaking came up short this year, Kallenbach says. But in June, with moisture and warmer weather, the grass grows 80 pounds dry matter per day per acre. That’s up from 40 pounds or less in May.

    June and May have reversed, Kallenbach said on a weekly MU Extension

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    Groundbreaking stem cell research Lou Gehrig’s disease


    On July 4, 1939, Lou Gehrig said goodbye to the crowd at Yankee Stadium: “Fans, for the past two weeks you have been reading about the bad break I got. Yet today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.” The bad break he referred to was his career-ending diagnosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known today as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Seventy-five years later, researchers studying ALS are using cutting-edge stem cell science to develop treatments and, one day, a cure.

    ALS affects nerve cells called motor

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    Savvy Senior®

    Dear Savvy Senior,

    Can you recommend any credible resources that rate the best vehicles for older drivers? My wife and I are both in our seventies and are looking to purchase a new automobile but could use some help choosing one that’s age friendly. What can you tell us?

    Car Shoppers

    Dear Shoppers,

    While there are a number of websites that rate new vehicles for older drivers, one of the most credible is, a top-rated online resource for

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    What do we know about falls?

    by Nina Chen, Human Development Specialist

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are the leading cause of injury and death in adults age 65 and older. Falls can increase the risk of elderly death and cause moderate to severe injuries such as hip fractures and head traumas. Falls cause most fractures among older adults. The most common fractures are of the spine, hip, arm, hand, leg, ankle and pelvis.

    Who is at Risk?

    *White men have the highest fall-related

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    The link between hearing loss and cognitive health


    Difficulty hearing may be more than just a quality-of-life issue. Growing evidence indicates that untreated hearing loss in older adults can lead to other health conditions, and one of the most concerning is cognitive decline.

    In fact, a Johns Hopkins Study found that cognitive diminishment was 41 percent more likely in seniors with hearing loss. Because maintaining the health of the brain is such a priority for older people, hearing difficulties should not be ignored.

    Hearing and the brain

    To hear well, the brain

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    Why are state tax refunds late?

    by State Rep. Warren Love

    In recent days I have been asked by many of my constituents why they have’t received their income tax refund?

    Here us the best answer I can give according to what our Majority Floor Leader John Diehl has to say about the situation.

    House Majority Leader John J. Diehl Jr. today stood in defense of the more than 260,000 Missourians still awaiting their tax refunds by calling on Governor Nixon to act immediately to issue the refund checks. Diehl

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