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Morning headlines: Thursday, August 11, 2011

UPI/Bill Greenblatt
Gov. Nixon will visit Joplin Aug. 11 to tour the big box store that will house 11th and 12th grade students.

Nixon to return to Joplin to announce school funding

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon is returning to Joplin to discuss funding for schools in the tornado-ravaged city.

Thursday afternoon, Nixon is scheduled to visit the Joplin 11th and 12th Grade Center - an empty big-box store that will house the two grades while the high school is rebuilt. He'll be joined by superintendent C.J. Huff and members of the Joplin Board of Education in touring the building and making the announcement on funding for the upcoming school year.

Joplin's high school was among thousands of homes, businesses and other buildings damaged or destroyed in the May 22 tornado, which killed at least 160 people.

Search scaled back for missing Mo. Trooper

The search for the body of missing Missouri Highway Patrol trooper Fred Guthrie Jr. has been scaled back but will continue.  The search for Guthrie's body began Aug. 1 after he and his patrol dog disappeared while patrolling flooded land near Big Lake in northwest Missouri. The dog's body was recovered the next day.

The patrol says it believes Guthrie and the dog became trapped in a strong river current and were swept away.

The St. Joseph News-Press reports  that starting Wednesday, the patrol reduced the number of officers and equipment being used in the search, in part because they were needed elsewhere. Patrol Maj. Tommy Roam said the search will continue and the patrol is determined to find Guthrie's body.

Public meeting tonight on endangered beetle

The Missouri Department of Conservation is holding a public meeting Thursday night on a federal proposal to reintroduce an endangered beetle into the state. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed reintroducing the American burying beetle at the Wah'Kon-Tah Prairie in southwest Missouri.

The state agency says the burying beetles proposed for release are being raised at the St. Louis Zoo, which is paying the reintroduction costs. Thursday's public meeting is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. at the El Dorado Springs Community Center.

American burying beetles were once found in 35 states but have since vanished from much of their original range. The last documented sighting in Missouri was in Newton County in the 1970s. Some still survive in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and South Dakota.



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