MANUFACTURING JOBS-UNSKILLED WORKERS
KC-area manufacturers see skilled worker shortage
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Manufacturing companies in Kansas and Missouri say there are plenty of high-paying jobs available for people qualified to run sophisticated factory equipment, but there doesn't seem to be enough local talent to fill them.
Industry leaders in both states say many job applicants lack even basic reading, writing and math skills necessary to perform required tasks.
The Kansas City Star (http://bit.ly/1u985AS ) reports larger manufacturers are able to afford up to $10,000 per worker for training, but that's more of a challenge for smaller companies.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said in its August manufacturing survey that regional manufacturing companies have been expanding production for eight straight months.
Several manufacturers with openings in the Kansas City area say their vacant positions would pay between $14 and $25 an hour.
KC police identify man killed by officers
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Kansas City police have released the identity of a man killed by police officers after they say he fired several rounds at them before being fatally wounded.
The Kansas City Star (http://bit.ly/1u9dpUT ) reports 28-year-old Eugene Turner was killed just before 5 a.m. Sunday after officers responded to a call about a suspicious person with a gun.
Police issued a statement on Sunday saying Turner was walking the streets carrying a gun for unknown reasons.
Ambulance workers declared Turner dead, and police recovered a handgun nearby. The two officers involved in the shooting were placed on paid administrative leave.
Bomb threat forces terminal evacuation at KCI
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A person's comment about a pickup truck that might be carrying a bomb prompted the evacuation of a main terminal at Kansas City International Airport.
The Kansas City Star reports flights scheduled to be arriving at Terminal B were rerouted to Terminal C while the Kansas City bomb squad searched the truck.
Airport spokesman Joe McBride (http://bit.ly/1u9gqoh ) says the person who mentioned a bomb to an airport employee at 6:30 p.m. Sunday was taken into custody by airport security. Passengers were allowed to return to the terminal around 8:30 p.m.
McBride says it was not immediately known if explosives were found.
Missouri ballot features teacher evaluation change
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri voters are likely to hear a lot about good teachers and local control in the coming months.
Public education groups are gearing up for a big battle with prominent political donor Rex Sinquefield over a proposed constitutional amendment changing teacher employment standards in Missouri.
The proposal will be labeled as Constitutional Amendment 3 on the November ballot. It would limit teacher tenure protections and require school personnel to be evaluated, paid and fired based largely on student performance data.
Sinquefield is bankrolling the group backing the measure. He says it will reward good teachers and help schools get rid of bad ones.
Teachers unions and school administrators' groups are opposing the measure. They say it will lead to more standardized testing and less local control for schools.
BIOTECH OFFICE PARK
Breaks sought for proposed biotech office park
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Backers of a proposed biotech office park in south Kansas City are preparing to seek tax breaks for the 350-acre project.
Called Oxford on the Blue, the office park would be bigger than Sprint's headquarters or Corporate Woods in Overland Park, Kansas.
The Kansas City Star (http://bit.ly/1CdhUlR ) reports that the city's Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee is set to consider a property tax abatement for the project on Sept. 10. If approved, the changes would face a final vote by the Kansas City Council the next day.
Oxford on the Blue advocates say the tax break is needed to bring research firms, clinical trial facilities and similar biotech operations to the site. Others, including school district officials, question whether it would extend tax incentives too far.
Entrepreneurs happy to be in St. Louis
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A young entrepreneur's removal from Canada turns out to be fortuitous both for him and St. Louis.
Marshall Haas intended to work in British Columbia for the company that bought his startup software firm, but when it was apparent he wouldn't get a work visa, a "very stern" government official urged him to return to the U.S.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/VVxiC3 ) reports that Haas is from Dallas. He had landed in St. Louis after his software firm, Obsorb, won a $50,000 Arch Grant in 2012. After his brief effort in 2013 to relocate to Canada, he decided to try another startup in St. Louis.
Haas and business partner Jon Wheatley are co-founders of Need/Want, a consumer products firm making a go of it in St. Louis.
POLICE SHOOTING-NO GRAY AREA
No gray area: Beliefs shape views of Brown killing
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Many Americans are convinced there was no justification for a suburban St. Louis police officer to kill 18-year-old Michael Brown, because Brown was unarmed.
Others are certain the shooting last month in Ferguson was justifiable because they believe Brown threatened the officer.
But according to a CBS News/New York Times poll, 64 percent of respondents said they didn't know enough to decide. Only about half said they'd paid "a lot" of attention to the case.
The national furor over the shooting is being fueled by those with strong opinions who are still marching or loudly supporting their side.
Psychologists say such strong opinions are often influenced by "confirmation bias." Research shows people search for evidence to support their preexisting viewpoints and interpret it in a way that reinforces their beliefs.
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