The Reporter covers Miller, Morgan and Camden County in Central Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks and is published once per week on Wednesdays.

(Updated March 26, 2015)

 

Giant Ferris wheel proposed for Osage Beach

By Dale Johnson
   OSAGE BEACH – A local resident is proposing a unique attraction for the city to bring in tourists and boost the local economy: a Ferris wheel.
  But not just any Ferris wheel, but a giant Ferris wheel like the one adorning the skyline of London, England.
   In a letter to the city last week, resident Frank Baldwin floated the idea along with claiming initial support from a number of people in the city.
   The letter begins with a question for the city: “Is there something we can do as residents of Osage Beach?”
   “Do you realize that a Ferris wheel like the one in London would have an enormous impact on the local economy, the surrounding area and the state of Missouri?” Baldwin said in his letter.
   Baldwin is aware of the financial problems the city is experiencing since the Highway 54 bypass came into existence, coupled with the country’s economic woes.

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WBC to picket school Mar. 27

   CAMDENTON - The Westboro Baptist Church has sent a letter to city officials stating that they will be protesting at the Camdenton High School on Friday March 27 from 2:40 to 3:10 p.m.
   The alleged Christian group has built a reputation around the world of picketing and protesting funerals of various people, mainly veterans but has also picketed individuals and concerts.
   No reason for the protest was stated in the press release from the city and the website of the group does not reference the upcoming protest.
   The group has been met with anger and violence in its protests, but banning them from picketing has failed in this country, with courts claiming the verbal assaults on people fall under the First Amendment freedom of speech.
   “As such, Camdenton Police Department plans to work with the church and the school to manage the protest in a peaceful manner,” said a department spokesman. “We are working to confirm the location, most probably on city right of way on Elm Tree near the intersection of Laker Pride.”
   One parent told The Reporter that they are unsure whether they will send their children to school that day or keep them home.
   The group is also planning to protest at the First United Methodist Church, the Concord Baptist Church and the First Assembly of God in Jefferson City on March 29.

City to update 911 system

By Jeff Thompson
   OSAGE BEACH - The city will soon be updating its 911 system as well as adding another ambulance to its vehicle fleet thanks to requests from the police chief and approval by the Board of Aldermen.
   The board approved Police Chief Todd Davis’s requests last Thursday afternoon, meeting at 4:30 p.m. instead of its usual 6:30 p.m.
   The city will be riding piggyback on the shoulders of the Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) in order to update its 911 system at a favorable price.
   Davis made the request to sign an “interlocal contract for cooperative purchasing” with H-GAC that would allow the city to purchase items through the Texas-based council with its existing government contracts.
   “The Osage Beach Police Department’s communication center is anticipating replacing the center’s 911 system this year and H-GAC currently has an active bid that we would like to utilize,” Davis said in a report to the board. “We can only do this if we are a contracted member.”

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Comprehensive plan for city seeking public input

By Jeff Thompson
   CAMDENTON - The city has taken another step towards updating its comprehensive plan reaching 20 years into the future with the creation of a website aimed at both providing information and seeking public input.
   The website - www.destinationcamdenton.org - offers an inside look at the process of updating the city’s comprehensive plan - dubbed “Destination Camdenton” - and asks the question:
   “Where do we want our community to be in the next 20 years?”
   The last plan was developed in 1987; things have changed since then.
   “The purpose of the plan is to examine all factors: quality of life, economic development and infrastructure to unite the community around a vision for Camdenton,” the website states.

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Man charged with threatening to murder Obama

   MORGAN COUNTY – A Stover man has found himself in major hot water last week when he was charged with threatening to assassinate President Barack Obama.
   Cameron James Stout, 24, was charged in a criminal complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Jefferson City, Mo.
   Stout, who was arrested and had an initial court appearance last week, remains in federal custody.
   According to an affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint, Stout threatened on several occasions to shoot and kill Obama.
   A confidential informant approached a Morgan County Sheriff’s deputy on Friday, March 13, and reported that Stout had solicited him the previous day for a rifle and assistance in his plan to shoot the president in the next few weeks, the affidavit says.
   The confidential informant, an alleged former Aryan Nation member, reported that Stout said he was going to kill the president and that he was serious.
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Nixon appoints assessor

   CAMDEN COUNTY – Last week Gov. Jay Nixon appointed Kayla Henry, of Richland, as the new Camden County Assessor: the position became vacant upon the resignation of Roy Edward (Eddie) Whitworth.
   “Kayla’s experience in the assessor’s office and dedication to her community will serve her well in this new role,” Nixon said.
   Whitworth retired after serving 18 years in the position.
   Since Whitworth is a Democrat and the governor is also a Democrat, he expected Nixon to appoint one, as he told The Reporter in early March.
   “Oh yes, he’ll appoint a Democrat I just don’t know which Democrat,” Whitworth said. “My hope is that the nomination for my position comes out of this office. I don’t care who it is because they will be better than someone coming in from outside.”
   The reason, according to Whitworth, is the job can be very complicated.
   “I don’t mean that in a bad way but it’s such a long learning curve, not like a commissioner, where you can learn things in a few months,” said Whitworth. “It takes basically four years to learn this job, but I have a really good competent staff that would make the transition easier.”
   Whitworth’s hopes did turn out true, with the appointment coming from his own office.
   Henry, a Democrat, has served as a land analyst in the Assessor’s Office since 2007.

OB Board of Aldermen actions Thursday Mar. 19

   OSAGE BEACH - In other business at the March 19 Board of Aldermen meeting:
* A budget amendment for lift station improvements and city park improvements was given first- and second-reading approval by the board.
   According to Public Works Director Nick Edelman, the lift station improvements - with the purchase of GP (grinder pump) 10D for $11,059 - had originally been budgeted for 2014 but the purchase was not available until 2015.
   The purchase brings the total amount of lift station improvements from $438,744 to $449,803.
   In addition, city park improvements had been set at $205,000 but the budget amendment called for an additional $163,590.
   “We thought this project would be completed in 2014,” Edelman stated in a report to the board. “We will be starting this project back up this month.”

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Camdenton Board of Aldermen actions Tues. Mar. 17

   CAMDENTON - On other business at the March 17 Board of Aldermen meeting:
* Ordinances correcting an omission in two supplemental agreements with the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) concerning Phase 1 and 2 of the city’s sidewalk grant project were approved by the board.
   According to City Administrator Jeff Hancock, the board had approved the original agreement at its Feb. 3 meeting but while reviewing the language MoDOT discovered that the Federal Aid Provisions had been accidentally omitted.
   The two ordinances place the provisions back into the agreements.
   * A resolution renewing the city’s “interagency letter of agreement” with Kids Harbor was approved by the board at the request of Police Chief Laura Wright.

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