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(Houston) – If you get pulled over in Houston in the near future, you’re interactions may be recorded.

Officers with the Houston Police Department will begin wearing body cameras in the middle of February. The Houston City Council approved the purchase of three body cameras during their most recent meeting, at a cost of almost $800 each. The program will be reviewed by the city council after a year to determine if more cameras are needed or newer models should be purchased.

The cameras will be turned on anytime the officers interact with the public, with the ability to record at least 300 minutes of video. The videos will be downloaded at the end of each shift and stored on a secure hard drive.

Officers who do not turn their cameras on during interactions with the public would be penalized, according to a personnel policy that the council asked the police department to adopt to get the cameras.

(West Plains) – A group of students from the West Plains campus of Missouri State University were recognized Wednesday as the winners of a national volunteer award from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

The award recognizes the 16 students who assisted the Howell County NRCS office with outreach and education by developing and presenting natural resources demonstrations to 153 students in 16 Howell County schools.

Under the direction of Debra Mayers, instructor of the Biology for Educators’ class at MSU-West Plains, the students presented age-appropriate lessons on pollution, water conservation, recycling, the water cycle, and cohesion. The Howell County students learned important conservation concepts while their parents, other educators and community leaders were made aware of the NRCS presence in their communities.

The MSU group was selected in October as the winner of NRCS’ Earth Team Volunteer Group award for Missouri, and its nomination was forwarded to NRCS’ national Earth Team office for consideration for the national award.

(Little Rock) (AP) – An Arkansas House committee has approved a proposal that would require a doctor to be present when women take abortion-inducing medication.

The Public Health, Welfare, and Labor committee Thursday voted to send the bill to the House. It would prevent any instance of the medication being administered through telemedicine and require that doctors attempt to schedule a follow-up visit.

Republican Rep. Julie Mayberry of Hensley says her bill is aimed at protecting the health of women who might have adverse reactions to abortion-inducing pills. She says a doctor should be present.

Opponents say lawmakers shouldn’t dictate how doctors practice medicine. They say the bill grants government too much control.

Mayberry says that telemedicine isn’t used to administer the pill in the state and that her bill is a preventative measure.

(West Plains) – The 4-H and FFA steer weigh-in for the 2015 Heart of the Ozarks Fair in West Plains will be held on Saturday, February 14 at the Heart of the Ozarks Fairgrounds in West Plains.

The weign-in will begin at 9 AM and end at 11 AM. All steers will be weighed, tattooed, and ear tagged at this time. Exhibitors wanting to enter steers in the Missouri State Fair will need to attend this weigh-in to have their steers’ nose printed.

In order for steers to qualify for the Heart of the Ozarks Fair they need to weigh at least 450 lbs. and no more than 850 lbs. at the weigh-in. All calves must be castrated prior to the weigh-in as there will not be a vet on the premises during the weigh-in. Youth wanting to weigh-in livestock for the Heart of the Ozarks Fair must be a member in good standing with the Missouri 4-H club program or a paid member in good standing with a local FFA Chapter.

Each exhibitor must pay $10 at weigh-in to support the sale dinner at the fair.

For more information contact the University of Missouri Extension Center at 417-256-2391.

(West Plains) – Area residents interested in attending college can learn more about financial aid options available to them at a workshop set for 6 PM Monday, February 9, at Willow Springs High School.

The workshop is being hosted by Missouri State University-West Plains.

A representative from the college will be on hand to provide information to students and parents regarding federal and state resources available to help students finance their post-secondary education. This includes information about federal financial aid programs such as the Pell Grant, campus-based work-study programs, Stafford student loans and PLUS loans for parents, as well as state programs such as the Access Missouri grant, Bright Flight Scholarship and the A+ Program.

In addition, those attending will receive information about the financial aid application process, including instructions for filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

All of the information provided will be useful for students planning to attend any post-secondary institution that participates in the federal Title IV programs, not just Missouri State-West Plains.

For more information about the workshop, contact the Missouri State-West Plains financial aid office at 417-255-7243 or contact Willow Springs High School Counselor Amanda Munsan at 417-469-2114, ext. 307.

(Jefferson City) (AP) – Assistance for Missouri’s dairy farmers appears to be one of the first bills the Legislature will send to Gov. Jay Nixon.

The House gave initial approval to the dairy farm bill Wednesday and the Senate heard the bill Thursday.

Supporters say the bill is needed to keep Missouri’s milk providers in business.

The measure provides a subsidy to help dairy farmers pay for insurance, a scholarship for students studying dairy farming and funds for research on the industry.

Opponents say the state government should not interfere with the free market or try to fix an industry regulated at the federal level.

Funds for the program would have to be approved separately and would come from existing sales tax on dairy products.

(West Plains) – A prescribed fire workshop will be held in February at the MDC regional office in West Plains.

Marcus Asher, private land conservationist with the MDC, spoke with Ozark Radio News and told more:

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He also told us some of the topics that will be covered at the workshop:

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Again, that number to RSVP is 417-256-7161.

(Little Rock) (AP) – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has issued a consumer alert warning residents to watch out for so-called “rapid” refund products as tax season gears up.

Rutledge issued the alert Wednesday, saying millions of American taxpayers obtain these products – such as refund anticipation checks or bonus deposit checks – every year.

Her office says refund anticipation checks are essentially high-interest loans which must be repaid by an actual tax return and in many cases are deducted directly from refund proceeds.

With those products, she says consumers are essentially borrowing and paying interest on their own money – and sometimes the refund is less than the loan amount that needs to be repaid.

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The CenterLines. (provided)

The CenterLines. (provided)

(Summersville) – The Summersville Senior Center’s CenterLines line dance group will celebrate the first year anniversary of the group’s existence for supper at Acleda’s Korner Kitchen in Raymondville on Friday, January 30 at 5 PM.

Everyone who has participated in the weekly line dance workouts during the past year is invited to attend.

The group has began dancing publicly for festivals and benefits and welcomes new members. It has donated more than $400 to the Summersville Senior Center during the past year. The free line dance workout is held from 1-2 PM each Friday at the Summersville Senior Center. Contact Kathie Cox at 417-932-4866 for more information.

(Melbourne) – Ozarka College in Mountain View, AR will host an Introduction to Computers course to be offered through Continuing Education beginning in March.

The four-week course, being taught by Frances Bullard, will cover basic computer concepts, Microsoft Windows, Internet search and navigation, e-mail basics, and sending attachments. The course runs from March 6-27 and meets on Fridays, from 9 AM to 12 PM.

The tuition is just $25 per student and $20 for people ages 60 and over. Seating is limited and registration is required. Please contact Lindsay Wilson-Galloway, Director of Ozarka College Off-Campus Operations in Mountain View, AR at 870-269-5600.