Comments sought on new bass fishing regs

Upcoming open houses will give citizens chances to discuss potential regulation changes.

A crew samples smallmouth bass populations on the Elk River in McDonald County. For MOCON story by Jen Girondo. Rick Horton drives the boat.

Smallmouth and rock bass are very popular with anglers in Missouri streams. However, research by the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) shows that both species grow slowly and many do not reach a quality size before dying from natural causes or being caught by anglers.

As a result of research and angler feedback, MDC is proposing changes to fishing regulations for these two popular game fish that they believe would ensure the quality of smallmouth and rock bass populations and simplify regulations for smallmouth in MDC Special Management Areas.

For rock bass (also called goggle eye), MDC research shows a majority of anglers favor a single, statewide minimum length limit (currently there is none outside of special management areas). MDC is proposing setting this minimum length limit at seven inches. Anglers in south-central Missouri should note the rock bass minimum length limit will remain eight inches at MDC’s Rock Bass Management areas on the Big Piney and Eleven Point rivers.

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Residents concerned about intersection

By Mattie Sexton

Officials with the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) are planning on being in Seneca Thursday, Oct. 22, at the high school for a public meeting about the Highways 60/43 intersection improvements.

The meeting is set for 4-6 p.m. and is a come-and-go style meeting with no formal presentation planned. According to MoDOT, several Seneca residents have expressed concern about driving on Route 43 and crossing Route 60.

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Missouri has a pumpkin shortage

By MDN Staff 

A University of Missouri agriculture expert says the wet weather of early summer followed by a lack of rainfall in the fall has hurt pumpkin production in the state.

“It’s worse than having a drought year. At least in a drought year we can water, whereas this year was so wet for so long that we’re having things there’s just nothing there and at the end of the year there’s just nothing to water,” said Tim Reinbott, superintendent of the University of Missouri Bradford Research Center. “So it’s just been a big disaster, really.”

Reinbott said the price for a pumpkin is almost double the cost of last year.

“Also, the size is way down this year. I was just out there today and we maybe have two-thirds the size of what we normally have. The late dry weather really affected that,” he said.

One agricultural products store in Jefferson City reported they had to get their pumpkins from outside of Missouri.

KCS Holiday Express Coming to Neosho

Kansas City Southern Railway’s Holiday Express is coming back to train

The holiday train will stop in Neosho at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 8, at 211 E Coler St., close to the former Coler Street railroad crossing, near Twin Rivers Foods.

Visitors can board the train, visit with Santa and his elves and tour the inside of three cars of the festive six-car train. It is free and open to the public.

The KCS Holiday Express made its last stop in Neosho in 2010.

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Library names new director

By Mattie Sexton

The Neosho Newton County Library has hired a new library director. The library’s board of directors has chosen Carrie Cline as the director.Carrie Cline copy

Cline is replacing Ginny Ray, who retired as library director at the end of August. Cline currently works at the McDonald County Library in Pineville, where she has served as the library director since 2001.

“I am from Neosho, graduated from there, and once I got my bachelor’s degree I became a school librarian at Maries R-1 School,” said Cline.

Her public library career began as a part-time employee at the Neosho Newton County Library when then-director Jack Wood hired her when she was just a junior in high school.

“I also worked at Wright County’s library for four-and-a-half years before I saw the position opening for Mac County,” said Cline.

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Public’s help needed to report water thefts

The City of Neosho asks the public’s help in reporting illegal connections to fire hydrants.

It is important that Neosho citizens are provided with safe, clean, and reliable drinking water. Fire hydrants are directly connected to the drinking water supply. The water system is vulnerable to contamination through the unauthorized use of fire hydrants from a variety of sources, including but not limited to private construction contractors and swimming pool fill trucks.

If, for example, the water pressure should drop during an illegal connection, contaminants could be sucked backward through the hydrant and into the supply.

Illegal connections threaten the quality of water delivered to homes and businesses and can lower pressure in the water lines required for fire protection.

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High School remodel almost complete

The new Neosho High School FEMA shelter addition will be completed in mid-July.

The foyer just inside the new west (main entrance) doors at Neosho High School. The wood decor ties in with the gymnasium design.

“The inside is 99 percent complete… just doing some finishing touches,” said Dan Decker, Neosho superintendent of schools.

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No same-sex marriage licenses given out locally

(Editor’s note: This is the second in a five-part series about same-sex marriage in Missouri.)

As of July 9, the Newton County Recorder’s Office has not had any same-sex couples come in for a marriage license.

“Frankly, I’m glad we haven’t had any, but it’s just a matter of time before we do,” said Lenora Hyder, Newton County Recorder of Deeds.

Although the marriage license itself was not altered to accommodate same-sex couples, the application for the marriage license was.

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Neosho library given early literacy grant

The Neosho/Newton County Library has received a grant in the amount of $3,445 to establish or expand existing early literacy programming.

The library will use the funds to offer six early literacy programs for parents and educators at partnering locations and will offer three onsite programs.

“This grant will help the Neosho/Newton County Library bolster early literacy programming that makes sure children are ready to read by the time they begin school,” said Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander.

“I’m proud my office is again able to increase learning opportunities and resources that help make Missouri’s libraries some of the best in the nation.”

The secretary of state’s literacy and educational enrichment grants are funded by the Library Services and Technology Act through the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, which is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute’s mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas.