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Missourians On Medicare Use More Opioids Than The National Average

One out of three Missouri participants in Medicare’s prescription drug program were prescribed opioids last year, more than the national rate of 29%, according to a newly released government report . About 973,000 Missourians were enrolled in Medicare Part D and 321,000 of them received opioids, the report by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ inspector general finds.

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Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

Gun manufacturer Colt says it plans to suspend production of AR-15-style rifles for the civilian market. The company plans to limit its production to fulfilling its police and military contracts.

The national debate on gun restrictions has largely focused on semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15 and other so-called “assault weapons,” because of their use in high-profile mass shootings.

Colt says the decision is not a political one.

More2

Faith-based advocacy group More2 is demanding justice from the Kansas City Police Department following the fatal police shooting of Terrence Bridges in May. The group is calling for an indictment of the officer who killed him.

The KCPD said on May 26, they responded to 911 calls about a domestic violence incident involving a firearm. When officers arrived, police said the woman in the home told them her car had been stolen and her husband kidnapped.

Jackson County Executive Frank White Thursday blasted the audit of the COMBAT anti-crime tax commissioned by the prosecutor's office. 

Carolina Hidalgo / St. Louis Public Radio

A federal judge’s order blocking Missouri’s 20-week abortion ban from taking effect will remain in place while the state appeals.

Senior U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs on Wednesday denied the state’s request for a partial stay of his order, which he handed down last month.

The Planned Parenthood clinic in St. Louis, Missouri’s only remaining abortion provider, and its medical director, Colleen McNicholas, had challenged the constitutionality of the ban, which the legislature enacted earlier this year.

Courtest of Melanie Arroyo

Latinos seek help for mental health issues at half the rate of non-Hispanic whites. Yet when they do, as with other people of color in Kansas City, they can have more difficulty finding providers with a similar cultural background. 

Chris Neal / For the Kansas News Service

The Kansas Board of Regents voted Wednesday to change the benchmarks for in-state students to attend the state’s six public universities, and class-rank requirements are out.

The move is meant to increase the number of Kansas high schoolers who are eligible to attend Kansas State University, Emporia State University, Pittsburg State University, Fort Hays State University, Wichita State University and the University of Kansas. 

Scott Canon / Kansas News Service

 

A Jackson County jury found in favor of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City and St. Joseph in a case brought by a Catholic school teacher who was fired after she got pregnant out of wedlock. 

Michelle Bolen’s 15-year career at St. Therese North Elementary ended abruptly two months after she told her pastor and boss, Father Joseph Cisetti, that she and her fiancé planned to keep the baby. 

BNIM and HOK

The future of a proposed downtown office tower is now in the hands of a new city council torn between fulfilling a 15-year-old contract and protecting taxpayer money. 

The 25-story tower would be the first multi-tenant, premium office building built downtown since 1991. It would be built on a speculative basis — meaning it has no tenants lined up — on the southwest corner of 13th and Main, above current retailers like Yard House. 

On Wednesday, 1st District councilwoman Heather Hall summed up what several councilmembers were feeling. 

Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

This story was updated at 2:03 p.m. with a comment from the school district.

Another lawsuit has been filed against the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District alleging racial discrimination during the hiring of spokeswoman last year.

In the lawsuit, Danielle Nixon alleges she did not get the job because of her race. According to court documents, former Superintendent Dennis Carpenter “told the selection committee that he would never hire an African American female for that key role.”

File photo by Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

Over the last three years, millions of dollars generated by COMBAT, the anti-drug and anti-violence sales tax in Jackson County, has been spent with little or no oversight, according to a new audit.

The COMBAT sales tax was approved by voters in 1989, and it has recently generated more than $20 million a year. Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker commissioned the audit after she took over the agency in 2018.

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