Every day from now until the end of the year Missouri Business Alert will be looking back at the top five stories that shaped particular industries or regions in the state. Keep checking back to find out what 2012’s biggest news-making events were where you live and where you work.
Dearborn Couple Splits Record $588 Powerball Jackpot
Cindy and Mark Hill, high school sweethearts in the late 1970s, returned to the school gym full of students, friends and family, as winners of half of a record $588 million Powerball jackpot.
Instead of taking nearly $294 million stretched over 29 years, the Hills planned to take a lump sum of $192 million. “I think we’re going to have a pretty good Christmas,” said Cindy Hill, who was laid off from her job as an office manager in June 2010. Her husband is a mechanic working the night shift at a meat processing plant in St. Joseph.
Confined Feeding Company Settles Hog Odor Lawsuits
Premium Standard Farms and attorneys for nearly 300 Missourians who sued the company because of hog odors announced a confidential, joint settlement in August. Premium Standard, based in Princeton, Mo., has been the focus of lawsuits filed by hundreds of residents across the northern part of the state who contended that their quality of life was harmed by odors wafting off the mega-confinements.
Those lawsuits have resulted in multimillion-dollar awards against Premium Standard. Also this year, Gov. Jay Nixon signed a law limiting payouts to people in certain lawsuits against livestock farms to prevent neighbors from filing repeated nuisance lawsuits for the same problems on the same farms.
Energizer Closing Maryville Plant
Shrinking demand for disposable batteries is the main reason Energizer Holdings decided to shutter its northwest Missouri battery manufacturing plant next year, company officials said, leaving about 300 workers out of a job.
The St. Louis-based company announced in October that it will close its Maryville plant next year as part of a restructuring plan made necessary by a global trend toward rechargeable batteries.
Northwest Town Calls it Quits After 150 years
A tiny northwest Missouri town that was the birthplace of a governor and home to one of the country’s largest cattle ranches has ceased to officially exist after 150 years. Quitman, which had 45 residents in the 2010 census, quit collecting taxes in September because no one ran for any of the five board of trustees’ positions. With no board to set a new tax rate, the tax came off the books in September, as required by state law. And no tax revenue, no town, the county commission’s vote was a formality.
Ag-Tech Company Locates in Maryville
The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Northwest Missouri State University has entered into an agreement with Missouri Moisture Analyzers LLC, the University and company announced in November.
The CIE and Maryville community offer the expertise and location to help accelerate the company to the marketplace. The company is estimated to create seven to nine new jobs the first year.