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Potential of Snow, Wintery Mix Forecast From Midwest to East
Winter storm forecast graphic, courtesy AccuWeather
Potential of Snow, Wintery Mix Forecast From Midwest to East
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), January 24, 2013 - AccuWeather reports the combination of lingering arctic air and two merging storms has the potential to spread a large swath of snow, wintry mix and slippery travel from the Midwest to the East, beginning Thursday night.

As with many winter storms, it's complicated.

Because of the recent cold weather, much of the snow that falls will not melt on paved and concrete surfaces.

The snow will be dry and powdery in many areas, what meteorologists call a high-ratio snow. This simply means a small amount of moisture can lead to a moderate amount of snow. A tenth of an inch of water can produce 2 or 3 inches, instead of the more typical 1 inch for the same moisture in an average storm setup.

Farther south, enough warm air will stream in aloft, while cold air hangs on near the surface to bring a zone of sleet, freezing rain or a mixture containing snow, ice and plain rain.

A several-hour period of ice or a wintry mix will stretch from northern Arkansas and southeastern Missouri to southwestern Kentucky, northern and eastern Tennessee, northern Georgia, upstate South Carolina, a large part of North Carolina and the southeastern corner of Virginia.


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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Birthday Celebrated at Historic Old Courthouse
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Holiday Celebration
Despite the bitter cold on January 21, 2013, smiles and lively conversation kept families, friends and local dignitaries warm for the annual march to Powell Symphony Hall for the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Holiday Celebration with an interfaith service and free concert.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Holiday Celebration
Following her spirited performance, Dollette Jones (center), from Charleston, MO, commented that the collation of President Obama's second inauguration falling on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday was predestined, not only by God but by Dr. King. "Then it came to past, so we could actually say that Dr. Martin Luther King was a prophet. He actually prophesied the day that Obama would become president and then it continues on for another four years. I thank God for that."
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Holiday Celebration
Howard Doss, from University City, who carried a sign featuring President Obama and Dr. King said that "Today was a combination of fifty years of civil rights, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday and the Inauguration all in one. I feel fired up, warm and ready to do this." He added with a smile, "It's cold out here."

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GM's Wentzville Assembly Plant Groundbreaking
"This one is for you," Governor Jay Nixon told representatives of General Motors, leaders from the United Auto Workers, workers from GM's Wentzville Assembly Plant, and local officials in remarks during groundbreaking of the $380 million expansion. See related story: GM's $380 Million Expansion in Wentzville Is Rebirth of American Automotive Industry in Missouri
Missouri Is One of the Best States in the Country for Auto Industry to Create Jobs
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), January 17, 2013 - Gov. Jay Nixon is in Detroit for the annual North American International Auto Show, to meet with leaders of General Motors, Ford Motor Co., and other leading auto manufacturers and suppliers.

In a release, Gov. Nixon said, "With dramatic expansions underway at Ford, General Motors and auto suppliers across our state, this strong jobs report is another one of many positive signs that Missouri's economy continues to move in the right direction."

"After previewing the next-generation of American-made vehicles to be built by workers in the Show-Me State, it's clear that our message to auto industry leaders has been delivered: our balanced budgets, trained workforce and pro-growth policies make Missouri one of the best places in the nation to invest and create jobs. I am committed to building on this solid record of growth and ensuring Missouri's auto industry continues to prosper and create jobs for years to come," stated the Governor.

The Governor and members of his economic development team have made a number of trips to Michigan to maintain close relationships with the nation's top automobile manufacturers and suppliers. These relationships, along with the bi-partisan Missouri Manufacturing Jobs Act signed by the Governor in 2010, played a pivotal role in decisions by Ford and GM to invest a combined $1.5 billion in their respective Missouri plants and create thousands of jobs in the Show-Me State.

Missouri's strong auto-supplier network also continues to strengthen and expand. Since the Governor's most recent trip to Detroit last year, several automotive-parts suppliers have announced plans to expand and create jobs in Missouri including LMV Automotive Systems in Liberty, Spartan Light Metal Products in Mexico, TG Missouri in Perryville and Henniges Automotive in New Haven.

Missouri's gains in manufacturing have garnered national attention. In its most recent listing of the 10 Most Entrepreneurial States, CNN Money said of Missouri and its number six ranking, "Move over, Detroit. The big guns of manufacturing have turned sweet on Missouri - and GM, Ford and even Boeing are opening or expanding factories here."


Gov. Nixon Details Plans to Provide Health Care Coverage for Additional Estimated 300,000 Missourians
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), January 17, 2013 - Gov. Jay Nixon visited Three Rivers College in Poplar Bluff to discuss his plans to provide health care coverage for an additional estimated 300,000 Missourians.

The Governor said the step would yield significant benefits not only for uninsured working families and the economy, but also for Missouri taxpayers because the federal government will cover 100 percent of the costs for the first three years.

"Right now, we have a unique opportunity to provide health coverage to nearly 300,000 Missourians who can't afford health insurance, while growing our economy and standing up for taxpayers," Gov. Nixon said. "This is the smart thing to do, and the right thing to do, for the people of Missouri."

"Beyond our borders, Democrats and Republicans alike are stepping forward to make sure their states take advantage of this opportunity," Gov. Nixon said. "If Missouri turns down these dollars - dollars that come from taxes paid by Missourians - that money will go to some other state. They'll get the benefit, and we'll get the bill."

Currently, federal law allows for an expansion of Medicaid to cover low-income Americans who can't afford health insurance by raising the eligibility level to 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. A family of four living at 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level in 2012 makes $31,809 a year.

Because federal funding will cover 100 percent of the costs for calendar years 2014, 2015 and 2016, expanding health care coverage to those 300,000 uninsured Missourians would involve no state tax dollars for those years. Beginning in 2017, the state share would be just five percent of the cost, and then increase to six percent for 2018 and seven percent for 2019. Beginning in 2020, the state would pay only 10 percent of the cost.

Missouri hospitals are already required by law to treat people who have no health insurance. This results in the high cost of caring for the uninsured being passed along to employers and individuals who must pay higher premiums for their health insurance. If this coverage is not compensated for through an expansion of Medicaid to cover the cost of that care, hospitals will have to bear those costs or pass them onto patients with health insurance.


"I'm Pet Friendly" License Plates Supports Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), January 12, 2013 - The Missouri Department of Agriculture now has grants for 2013 available to animal shelters, rescue groups and other non-profit organizations for spay and neuter services. This is the fifth year for the program and donations are expected to top $20,000 this year, raising the total contributions through the program to more than $100,000 since it was established in 2009.

The Pet Spay and Neuter Program helps animal shelters, humane societies and non-profit rescue groups with the costs of spaying and neutering animals. Last year, the Department was able to provide $20,000 for Missouri shelters and rescue groups through this program. Applications for 2013 grants are available now through the Feb. 15, 2013 deadline.

"The Pet Spay and Neuter program is one more example of our commitment to supporting the work of Missouri's animal shelters, rescues and non-profits," said Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler. "By focusing on animal shelters and low-cost spay neuter initiatives, including our charitable organizations, we are making a difference for animals, ensuring that as many dogs and cats as possible receive this veterinary care."

The Pet Spay & Neuter program is funded through the sales of "I'm Pet Friendly" license plates through the Missouri Department of Revenue. Each sale of the plate donates $20 to the Missouri Pet Spay & Neuter Fund, which is administered by the Missouri Department of Agriculture. The plates are available to Missouri residents making a donation to the program. You may obtain the "I'm Pet Friendly" license plates throughout the year at your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) - a renewal notice is not necessary.

The 2012 recipients included the Perry Animal Welfare Society of Perry County, BARC of St. Louis County, Creative Communities, Inc. of Wayne County in southeast Missouri. In southwestern Missouri, Spay Neuter Assistance Program (SNAP), Inc. and the Ava Area Animal Welfare League Jr. received grants. Karma's Black Dog Rescue of Kansas City, the Foundation for Animals in Risk of Sedalia, the St. Joseph Animal Control and Rescue, the City of Warrensburg Animal Shelter and the Independence Animal Shelter also received grants from the program this year.

For more information, please visit the Missouri Department of Agriculture online at mda.mo.gov.


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