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(Isabella) – A West Plains man suffered minor injuries Saturday after the vehicle he was in ran off-road and overturned.

The accident happened 4 miles east of Isabella in Ozark County at 10:24 PM. 42-year-old Joseph Gambil was taken to Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains by private vehicle.

The driver of the vehicle was uninjured, according to a Highway Patrol report.

(Little Rock) (AP) – Arkansas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percentage point last month, from 6.2 percent in September to 6 percent in October.

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services reported Friday that Arkansas’ civilian labor force gained 7,400 jobs. The agency’s communications director, Becky Heflin, says that compared to October 2013, the number of employed Arkansans is up 3,300.

Seven major industry sectors added jobs, while three sectors declined and one remained stable. Jobs in government increased 3,100, and educational and health services added 1,900 jobs. The agency says jobs in manufacturing rose 1,500 and that employment in professional and business services increased 1,000 jobs. Construction jobs declined by 1,200, a typical seasonal loss.

At 5.8 percent, the United States’ jobless rate declined one-tenth of a percentage point in October.

(Washington) – Congressman Jason Smith (R-Salem) has been named to the House Ways and Means Committee, earning the assignment faster than any other current Republican committee member.

The Ways and Means Committee has continuously operated since 1795. Congressman Smith is the first Missouri representative appointed to Ways and Means since Representative Kenny Hulshof from Charleston, who served on the committee from 1997-2008. Smith says his priorities on the Ways and Means Committee include reforming the tax code, promoting free and fair trade, ensuring Social Security solvency, and working to fix America’s healthcare system.

Congressman Jason Smith was reelected in November with 67 percent of the vote, carrying all 30 counties, and at 34 years old, is currently the second youngest Republican member of Congress. Smith was first elected to Congress in a special election and has been serving the constituents of Missouri’s 8th Congressional District for 17 months. He previously served on the Judiciary and Natural Resources committees.

(Washington) – Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill recently sat down with members of the Missouri media and talked about tax reform. McCaskill says that there are a lot of corporate welfare programs in the US that unfairly favor certain sectors of the economy:

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A joint study by the Center for Effective Government and the Institute for Policy Studies released last week states that a number of the 30 largest corporations in the country paid their CEOs more than they paid in taxes in 2013.

(West Plains) – The West Plains City Council met last Monday and approved a number of bills, which included the renaming of a city street.

City Clerk Mallory Hawkins told Ozark Radio News more about the street naming:

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Another bill approved was an ordinance requiring pawn shops and second hand stores to electronically report their purchased goods through an online database. Hawkins says that the ordinance is available for viewing on the city’s website:

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Another bill approved by the West Plains City Council was a contract with the group Retail Strategies from Alabama. Hawkins explained the purpose behind the contract:

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That was approved by the council on a split 4-1 vote, the dissenting vote coming from Royce Fugate, who felt the city needed to focus more on bringing industrial jobs to the city.

Also new at this month’s meeting was a consent agenda approval:

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A mid-fiscal year budget amendment was also approved by the council.

(West Plains) – Despite some recent bad news in the jobs department in West Plains, a number of openings need to be filled.

Matt Owens from Penmac Staffing told Ozark Radio News that there are some important job openings across West Plains:

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Owens continued, saying that most of the employee requests they’re seeing are for short-term, immediate openings:

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He added that the easiest way to be considered for some of these jobs is to start the application process with Penmac:

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Again, for more information or to fill out an application, go to www.penmac.com.

(Cabool) – The annual Messiah Christmas Concert, presented by the STARS Foundation, will be performed on Sunday, December 7, at 3PM at the Cabool High School located at 720 Peabody Ave. in the old High School Gym.

The community is invited to attend this free event and enjoy the sights and sounds of Christmas with the STARS Foundation’s 100 member Choir/Orchestra. The STARS Foundation is a non-profit, community wide, Fine Arts School.

For more information about the Foundation, please visit our website www.thestarsfoundation.org.

(Mountain Home) – Lynn D. Baker of Cotter will be the speaker for the November meeting of the Baxter County Historical and Genealogical Society.

The November meeting of the Baxter County Historical Society will take place at 6PM on Tuesday, November 25, in the Knox Room of the Baxter County Library. The meeting is free and the public is welcome.

Baker will be presenting his topic “The Story of the Stones,” and will provide an interesting exploration of the tombstones, graves and cemeteries of the county and state.

Lynn has been an active genealogist for the last 25 years with research projects in numerous states. Since moving to Arkansas in 2005 Lynn has studied local history, specializing in cemetery research.

Lynn is the Baxter County Coordinator for the Arkansas Gravestones Project (AGP) and a board member for the Arkansas Cemetery Alliance (ACA). As coordinator Lynn supervised the completion of a project to photograph the more than 22,000 headstones in Baxter County, plus assisting with producing the first million online headstone photographs in Arkansas.  These pictures can be viewed online at www.arkansasgravestones.org.

Lynn’s presentation for the November meeting will provide an overview of the Arkansas Gravestones Project emphasizing the more than 100,000 military headstones in the state.

Lynn Baker is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel a veteran of the Vietnam and Iraq wars. He is also a retired Superintendent of the City of Tucson, Arizona Water Department.

(Melbourne) – Ozarka College will host their 5th Annual holiday event on December 5, beginning at 4:30 PM. This event is free to the public and will take place in the John E. Miller Education complex, at Ozarka College, in Melbourne.

This year’s theme is, “Holidays in Who-ville” and families are invited to join Ozarka College for the viewing of Dr. Seuss cartoons, pictures with Santa, coloring activities and treats prepared by the Ozarka College Culinary Arts Department.

In the case of inclement weather, this event will not be rescheduled. For more information about “Holidays in Who-ville”, please contact Suellen Davidson, Director of Advancement, at 870-368-2059 or sdavidson@ozarka.edu.

(Savannah) (AP) – Two teenage boys have died after falling through the ice on a farm pond in northwest Missouri.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol says Andre D. Lance and Tyler S. Brandt drowned Saturday afternoon after thin ice gave way on the private pond nine miles northwest of the Andrew County town of Savannah.

After the 17-year-old Savannah boys were reported missing Saturday night, the vehicle they had been driving was found parked near the pond. Deputies found a hole in the ice about 40 feet from the bank and requested help from the patrol.

With the help of a patrol rescue boat, the bodies of the teens were found. The patrol says the teens’ bodies were taken for autopsies.