Now Reading
Briefly in the News: May 1985

Briefly in the News: May 1985

Airport to build second taxiway

Columbia received a $702,000 federal grant to build a second taxiway, a windfall that Robert Selig, airport superintendent, says will cut down on crowded runways and make Columbia Regional Airport a more attractive spot for the aviation industry.

The grant from the Federal Aviation Administration will fund 90 percent of the project. The city has pledged to cover the remaining 10 percent.

Sen. John Danforth lobbied the FAA for the grant. The project is expected to be completed by early 1986.


County bridges fall into disrepair

Dozens of Boone County bridges are slated to be repaired or replaced in the coming years.

JOMAC Construction is under contract to replace 15 county bridges as part of a larger bridge improvement program that has repaired or replaced 205 of the county’s 324 bridges.

The program began in 1979 as part of a $7.5 million bond. About three-fourths of county bridges were found to be deficient.


Marijuana decriminalization rejected

An ordinance that would lower penalties for pot possession failed by 828 votes in a June election with larger-than-expected turnout.

The ordinance would have allowed prosecution for possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana to occur under city ordinances rather than the more severe state statute. Under state law, possession is considered a misdemeanor, but violators of the city ordinance would not be left with a criminal record.

Supporters of the ordinance say results might have been different had the election occurred when students from the University of Missouri, Stephens College and Columbia College were still in town.

In 2004, voters passed a marijuana decriminalization proposition 61-39 percent.


Columbia College proposes new gym

Columbia College made an offer to Howard Bennett, who owns Howard’s Garage at 700 Rangeline St., for his auto shop and six lots.

If Bennett accepts the offer, the college will build a new $1.25 million multipurpose space. It could be completed by fall 1986.


Driver killed by police

Columbia Police shot and killed a 19-year-old woman who was apparently trying to run over a police officer.

Kimberly Ann Linzie, a 1984 graduate of Hickman High School, was killed after police officers surrounded and shot at a car that was reported stolen. At least three police cars chased Linzie as she drove nonstop across north-central Columbia.

After being boxed in by police cars, Linzie hit the car in front of her and then backed up in an attempt to run over Officer Patricia Mills.

All officers involved in the shooting were taken off duty pending an investigation.


MU’s winter 1985 in-state tuition increases from $644 to $689.50.


Workers remove asbestos during Middlebush Hall renovation

A St. Louis-based asbestos removal company set to work on releasing thousands of asbestos fibers from more than a dozen rooms on all three floors of Middlebush Hall. The removal is part of an ongoing renovation of the hall.

The air inside the hall will be deadly for approximately the next month. The asbestos, which can cause cancer if inhaled and was originally installed for fireproofing, will be replaced with fiberglass.

About $2 million from MU’s general operations fund will finance asbestos removal in 1985-86. The rooms with asbestos will eventually become classrooms and administrative offices.


Summer Welcome begins at MU

Thirty upperclassmen led 3,000 of MU’s 3,750 on a new Summer Welcome orientation program designed to give incoming freshmen a taste of the MU experience.

The leaders offered 16 one- and two-day sessions over four weeks. Bill Seymour, Summer Welcome’s administrator, says parent and student evaluations of the program have been overwhelming positive.


Governor signs lottery compromise

Missouri is barreling toward implementing a statewide lottery, with Gov. John Ashcroft signing the legislation just a day after the General Assembly gave its final approval to the plan.

The new lottery will allow winnings to go tax free until July 1, 1988. After that, earnings above $599 will be subject to state income tax. Legislators hope the three-year tax-free policy will allow the lottery to become popular with residents.


Library renovation in progress

Ellis Library’s $8.1 million renovation project is about halfway done, new university documents say.

The two-story expansion will gave the library and the State Historical Society 50,000 square feet of space. The addition will also increase library seating by one-third and provide book collection space for the next eight years.

Project completion is scheduled for 1986.


New mall requests animated sign

General Growth Cos, which is developing the new Columbia Mall, approached the city Planning and Zoning Commission about installing a 4-by-18-foot animated sign with moving messages.

A 1971 ordinance prohibits animated signs in the city.


Columbia teachers to receive raise

Teachers at Columbia Public Schools will see their wages increase by an average of 11 percent.

The increase is the largest since a similar one four years ago. Base teacher salary will rise from $14,700 to $16,000.

The raises could cost the school district almost $200,000. To fund the increases, the board might have to reduce the number of new teachers it wanted to hire.


KOMU rejoins NBC

After a three-year stint with ABC, KOMU-TV, a commercial television station licensed to the curators of MU, will return to NBC. The station, which operates on Channel 8, was affiliated with NBC for 30 years but switched to ABC in August of 1982.

Station KCBJ-TV, Channel 17, is currently affiliated with NBC and will likely switch to ABC.

Declining ratings under the ABC affiliation led KOMU to return to NBC.


City considers tougher massage parlor ordinances

A massage parlor on Vandiver Drive will have its license suspended for 24 hours on June 1 after a former employee was convicted of soliciting prostitution.

City officials considered revoking the parlor’s license but opted for a temporary suspension instead because the employee was fired, and the solicitation was an isolated incident.

No provisions in city ordinances specifically address massage parlors. City officials, including members of the health and police departments, are considering a new ordinance that could eventually be presented to City Council.


Walton attends Hickman reunion

Sam Walton, the second-richest man in the country and owner of the Walmart chain, made it to Columbia for his 50th high school reunion.

Walton was a 1936 graduate of Hickman High School. After visiting with his classmates and attending the reunion luncheon, he stopped by Columbia’s three Walmart stores.


Missourians buckle up in response to seat belt law

More than 70 percent of Columbia residents say they now wear seat belts. A new mandatory seat belt law for front-seat passengers went into effect in September of 1985.

Although the law is already in effect, police will begin fining violators $10 in 1987. More than half of Columbia residents say the fines would encourage them to buckle up. Thirty percent say they would still choose to forgo the belts.


Stephens College to cut faculty

With enrollment stagnant at about 1,000 students, Stephens College seeks to eliminate 20 to 23 faculty positions.

Kristin Offutt, an assistant to President Patsy Sampson, says the college is operating as if it has 1,500 students. Cutting positions would increase the college’s economic viability and bump the student-to-faculty ratio from 10-to-1 to 14-to-1.


Faurot Field gets artificial turf

MU’s 58-year-old football field got a facelift over the summer as the MU Athletic Department installed Omniturf, a new synthetic surface.

The department decided to donate the field’s leftover sod to MU, which will use it to re-sod tees at the AL Gustin Golf Course and re-sod as needed around campus.


Three-fifths of faculty rate Chancellor Barbara Uehling’s performance as fair to poor.


Lowry Street becomes Lowry Mall

A new campus beautification project has transformed Lowry Street and covered it in red brick to make it a meeting place for students.

The new mall is now closed to vehicles. Student leaders first proposed the mall plan in the 1960s.


Royals beat Cardinals for World Series win

The American League champion Kansas City Royals bested the National League champion St. Louis Cardinals to win the World Series four games to three.

The Royals won their first World Series title in what many dubbed the “Show-Me Series” or “I-70 Series.” The Cardinals sought a 10th title.


Council shoots down chemical storage plan

Citing safety concerns, the Columbia City Council denied a rezoning request from Atkins Chemical and Service Inc. that would have allowed Atkins to store chemicals in a building the company owns on Wilkes Boulevard and Fay Street.

The building is currently zoned for apartment use.


Stephens College sells vacant dorm for elderly home

Hillcrest Hall, a 163-room dormitory that Stephens College has not used in seven years, was sold to St. Louis developers who plan to construct apartments for senior citizens.

The college will use money from the multi-million-dollar deal to finance renovations around its campus.


Voters approve Highlands annexation

A proposition to annex 477 acres of land between Southampton Drive and Lake Valley Lane, also known as the Highlands, for a residential housing development passed easily among voters, 3,461 to 1,840.

The Highlands developers say the annexation will make the development better, as the subdivision must now meet city standards. The annex will cost the developers more, but taxpayers will not be forced to upgrade the area to meet city standards, as was the case in the Cedar Lake subdivision in south Columbia.


Restaurant embezzler gets five years

Daniel Ovshak, former general manager of the now-closed Harvest Moon Restaurant, was sentenced to five years in prison for stealing $13,401 from the restaurant.

Ovshak wrote himself checks and then falsely recorded them into the restaurant’s cash register. He was arrested after an internal audit found discrepancies in the restaurant’s finances. Food, liquor and payroll expenses were found to be higher than they should have been.

Bob Randolph, who owned Harvest Moon, fired Ovshak a week before closing the restaurant. Randolph closed the restaurant in part due to the finance discrepancies.


Tigers struggle under Widenhofer

The Missouri Tigers finished an abysmal 1-10 (1-6 Big Eight) during its football season. It was Head Coach Woody Widenhofer’s first year with the program.


$4.6 million bond issue for street repairs passes, second bond issue rejected.


Property acquisitions to cut jail crowding.


County campaigns for new government center

The Boone County Commission hopes to finance a new government center through a quarter-cent sales tax increase lasting five years.

If approved by voters, the tax would cover about $9 million of an $11 million construction project that would combine jail and courthouse offices into one building. Offices in the County-City building would also move to the new center.


Voters approve enhanced 911 service

Boone County voters approved expanding 911 services at a cost of about $308,000. Users will finance the new 911 system by paying $10 to $15 more in annual phone bills.

The new 911 service computerizes the system and immediately gives a 911 dispatcher a caller’s name and address. The expansion would also add 911 service to areas of Boone County that do not currently have it. Sturgeon, Centralia, Rocheport and Ashland have no 911 service.


Developers seek bonds for three new apartment projects.


Kansas media company takes over Channel 17

Topeka, Kan.-based media chain Stauffer Communications received final approval to take over KCBJ-Channel 17 in December 1984. The channel was established in 1971 by two Columbia brothers.


Uehling to create School of Fine Arts, Institute of Policy and Public Affairs

Focusing on MU’s long-range plan, Chancellor Barbara Uehling unveiled several university merger programs.

The first would create the School of Fine Arts, housing MU’s theater, art and music departments within the College of Arts and Science. A new Institute of Policy and Public Affairs would combine the public administration program from the College of Business and Public Administration with the political science department in the College of Arts and Science.

MU is also working to create a new writing program. A $50,000 allocation will revise freshman composition classes, create a writing lab and integrate computer technology in writing classes.


University enrollment down by 400.


KBIA general manager to resign

Ted Eldredge, the general manager of the university-owned KBIA-FM, agreed to resign after 13 years in the position.

University Provost Ronald Bunn asked Eldredge to resign following a university review of the station’s purpose. Eldredge’s resignation will allow “fresh blood” in the station, Eldredge says.


Historical society works to fund county museum

The Boone County Historical Society is about halfway to its $400,000 fundraising goal to build the Walters-Boone County Historical Museum and Visitors Center.

The museum will be named in memory of B.D. Walters and in honor of Lala Summers Walters. They are the parents of Raul Walters, a Columbia businessman who donated $100,000 to the Boone County Historical Society.

The museum’s proposed site is Nifong Park, adjacent to “Maplewood,” the home of the Lenoir-Nifong family. Their house is listed on the National Resister of Historical Landmarks.


FAA unveils new flight center

As part of a nationwide consolidation of 311 flight service stations, Columbia will get a new Automated Flight Service Station that will employ about 25 people later this year and 60 to 65 in the years to come.

Columbia’s existing service station will close. The 11 service station employees will be transferred to the new flight center.


Fire Station No. 7 dedicated.


Columbia ranks as fastest-growing metro area in state

Columbia grew about 5 percent between 1980 and 1984, making it the fastest-growing metropolitan area in Missouri.

Columbia added about 5,000 to its population since 1980. The business community attributes the growth to a strong, stable job market and says population may continue to grow when the Columbia Mall is completed and creates about 1,500 more jobs.


Boone County Commission adopts building construction codes.


Stewart Road residents oppose widening.


MU to divest $5 million in South African stocks

After student protests, the MU Board of Curators voted to divest about $5 million of an estimated $93 million in U.S. firms operating in South Africa. It also agreed that the university would no longer purchase stocks from firms that work in South Africa.

Students who protested the university’s ties to South Africa say they considered the divestment a small victory but would continue to fight for further divestments.


100-acre landfill

The city purchased the 100-acre Hinkson Creek Landfill site Aug. 8, 1985. The site was purchased for $264,550 from Carroll and Carol McDannold, following City Council approval, according to Columbia Missourian archives. As the landfill off Highway 63 North began to run out of space, this site was planned to last 25 to 30 years at what was the “current disposal volume.”

The city needed to start dumping its daily 200-ton hauls of garbage at the new landfill site by late fall or early winter. Each month the city waited for the permit, it lost $3,000.

This location, at 5700 Peabody Road, remains Columbia’s sanitary landfill and compost facility and is now called Columbia Landfill.


What's Your Reaction?
Not Sure

404 Portland St, Ste C | Columbia, MO 65201 | 573-499-1830
© 2023 COMO Magazine. All Rights Reserved.
Website Design by Columbia Marketing Group

Scroll To Top