Sunday, June 25, 2017

Links provided to top Turner Report/Inside Joplin links for the week

An Iowa sex offender who plowed into the Diamond Post Office during a high speed chase Friday morning provided the top post this week on Inside Joplin and the number seven post (and still gaining visitors) on the Turner Report.

Meanwhile, a reader's comments about Ace Mohr and about me topped the Turner Report statistics. The death of Joplin High School student Dylan Paugh was the number one post on Inside Joplin Obituaries.

The Turner Report

1. Reader: Ace Mohr is redeemable; Turner is a sad, haunted negative human being

2. High school photographer sentenced to 24 months in prison for internet stalking

3. Ten lawsuits alleging assault and battery, malpractice filed against former Joplin pediatric surgeon

4. Joplin High School sinkhole repairs cost $17,000+

5. So you want to be a Joplin R-8 middle school athletic director

6. Accused killer of Carthage man pleads not guilty

7. Sex offender charged with two felonies after crashing into Diamond Post Office during high speed chase

8. MSSU education student/Lamar student teacher arrested on child pornography charges

9. Greitens signs four bills into law

10. Joplin City Council approves $3.7 million contract for senior center construction

Inside Joplin

1. Iowa sex offender crashes into Diamond Post Office following high speed chase

2. Joplin Police: Have you seen this woman?

3. Dangerous, possibly armed, sex offender may be in Joplin area

4. Barton County Sheriff looking for missing Lamar teen, may be in Joplin area

5. Jasper County Dissolutions of Marriage

6. Jasper County Sheriff's Office Arrests

7. Joplin Police Department Weekend Arrests

8. Joplin Police Department Arrests June 21-22

9. Joplin man charged with felony leaving the scene after injury accident on 66

10. Jasper County Marriage Licenses

Inside Joplin Obituaries

1. Dylan Paugh

2. Leah Robinson

3. Janice Roughton

4. Kenneth Roach

5. Jason Chenault

6. Kristy Blanchard

7. Sheila Childers

8. Bradley Hembree

9. Thomas Bennett

10. Earlene Kelley

Agenda posted for Tuesday Joplin R-8 Board of Education meeting


  • The Joplin R-8 Board of Education will meet 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Memorial Administration Building. 

  • A closed meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. to discuss personnel issues and legal actions.

    A. Call to Order

    1. Roll Call

    B. Pledge of Allegiance

    C. Approval of Agenda - Action

    D. Public Comments Regarding Agenda Items 

    E. Reports

    1. Board President's Report

    a. Celebrations - Info. (Jeff Koch)

    b. BOE Policy Committee Update - Info. (J. Martucci, Deborah Gould, and Brent Jordan)

    c. BOE Finance, Salary, and Benefits Committee - Info. (J. Martucci, Lori Musser, and Brent Jordan)

    d. MSBA Leadership Summit Update - Deborah Gould

    2. Superintendent's Data Report

    a. Health and Dental Care Insurance Reports - Info. (Paul Barr)

    b. Financial Statements - Info. (Paul Barr)

    F. Consent Agenda - Action

    1. Approve Minutes - Action (Pat Waldo)

    2. Consent Agenda Contracts - Action

    a. Financial Advisory Services Agreement - (Paul Barr)

    b. Fundraising Works, Inc. - Eastmorland Elementary - (Dr. Moss)

    c. JHS Job Site Contract - Action (Sandra Cantwell)

    d. Contract Beacon School Autism Center - (Sandra Cantwell)

    e. Pest Control Renewal Contract (Dr. Sachetta)

    3. Declare Vehicles Surplus - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    4. Paper Products Supplier for Joplin Schools - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    5. Policy Updates Second Reading - Action (Dr. Moss)

    a. Policy JFCF: Bullying

    b. Policy JFCG: Hazing

    c. Policy JG-R: Student Discipline

    d. Policy IND: Ceremonies and Observances

    e. Policy KK: Visitors to District Property/Events

    G. Regular Agenda

    1. JEC - Prime Contract Change Order #5 Crossland Construction Co. - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    2. Accounts Payable - Action (Paul Barr)

    3. Budget Adjustments - Action (Paul Barr)

    4. Fund Transfer Authority - Final DESE Calculation - Action (Paul Barr)

    5. Salary Schedule Updates - Action (Paul Barr)

    6. Budget for the 2017-18 School Year - Action (Paul Barr)

    7. Life Insurance Bid - Action (Paul Barr)

    8. Depositary Bid - Action (Paul Barr)

    9. Health Plan TPA - Action (Paul Barr)

    10. Sports Medicine Bid - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    11. Bus Video Systems - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    12. Learning Management System Renewal - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    13. Capital Outlay Projects - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    a. Playground Safety Material for Irving and Royal Heights - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    b. Purchase of Two (2) Grasshopper Zero Turn Mowers - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    14. Emergency Repair of Sink Hole at JHS - Action (Dr. Sachetta)

    15. Appointment of BOE Treasurer and Secretary 2017-18 - Action (Dr. Moss)

    16. Policy Updates First and Final Reading - Action (Dr. Moss)

    a. Policy GCBA: Professional Staff Compensation

    b. Regulation GCBA-R1: Professional Staff Salary Schedules

    17. Policy Update First Reading - Action (Dr. Moss)

    a. Policy ECA: Building & Grounds Security

    b. Policy GBA: Exempt & Nonexempt Employees

    c. Policy GBAA: Staff Extra-Duty Assignments

    d. Policy GCD: Professional Staff Recruiting and Hiring

    e. Policy GDBA: Support Staff Compensation

    f. Policy GDC: Support Staff Recruiting and Hiring

    g. Policy IGBCA: Programs for Homeless Students

    h. Policy JEC: School Admissions

    i. Policy JGF: Discipline Reporting & Records

    18. Read 180/System 44 Product Support - Action (Dr. Gilbreth)

    19. School Messenger - Action (Dr. Gilbreth)

    20. Plus/Delta - Info. (Dr. Moss)

    a. Plus: What did we do well

    b. Delta: Opportunities for Improvement

    H. BOE Announcements
  • Kim Frencken: What we are missing is respect and the ability to agree to disagree

    (The following post, written by veteran educator Kim Frenckenm, is from her blog, Chocolate for the Teacher.)

    I'm sure to step on toes today. Sorry in advance. I don't mean to, but I feel very strongly about this issue. The freedom of speech. We all have our own opinions, right? So, why are we so eager to censor others, just because we disagree with them. This has made it to the news in different levels this week, but all alarming.

    First, a student was denied his diploma because he did not read the speech prepared by school administrators. He wrote one thanking his mother and God. Apparently, this was unacceptable to school administrators and teachers. Later, he was given his diploma and an apology, but what did he learn from this instance? I hope that he learned that defending freedom, everyone's freedom, not just those who agree with you is important. He has already enlisted in the military so he apparently believes in fighting for freedom. I hope that all of the administrators and teachers that condemned him will appreciate his service which protects their freedom. What was also disturbing to me was the fact that the journalist reporting the incident lumped all educators into the same basket. According to the news media, we are all a bunch of closed minded individuals that do not applaud our students achievements if they disagree with us and we are not educating them to search for facts and express their opinions. That wouldn't describe me or many of my colleagues. Maybe he should meet some of the teachers I know.

    On another level, a woman, wearing a Trump t-shirt, was ridiculed at a Starbucks. She left feeling humiliated. Did the associates forget that she was a customer? Did they think it was okay to print a message to her on her drink? I think they forgot that paying customers are the reason they have job. She did receive an apology from Starbucks, who stated that they will use this as a learning opportunity. Great. I just hope that they do. And, I hope that they instill in their employees a sense of respect regardless of the opinions of others.

    Social media certainly hasn't been any help. We think that because we are safe behind our computer screens that it makes it okay to trash someone. We unfriend and block people without giving it a second thought. Ranting and raving is the norm for some. I don't get it. If you don't like my posts or what I have to say, scroll on by. I'm not forcing you to read it or agree with it. And, please don't call me names. You don't know me. You only read my FB posts and judge me. I'm not judging you, nor am I being childish and blocking you. I'm reading and, if I don't agree, I respectfully scroll on by.

    That is what is missing. Respect. The ability to agree to disagree. It will come as a shock to some that we don't all agree. That doesn't make you right and me wrong. It makes us different. That is what makes us a great nation. We all think for ourselves and forge new ideas and make discoveries. By working together we can do things we could never do alone. Disagreement makes us dig deeper, have a better understanding of what we believe and why we believe it. Disagreement helps us find the bugs in a plan and work them out. Disagreement that results in arguments, violence, depictions of violence, or some other equally immature way only deepen the problem. These methods are not solutions.

    Are responsibilities being taught in school, along with freedoms? Do people, young and old alike, realize that with all of our rights we have responsibilities? Apparently not. We've crossed the line between socially acceptable and downright disgusting. Are we teaching students what the Constitution and Bill of Rights says or what we want it to say? Do we have the right to force our interpretations on a captive audience? NO. We don't have the privilege of enforcing our ideology in the classroom. We are modeling behavior for impressionable young people that we are teaching how to think for themselves. How to explore and research. Don't believe everything you read or see. We all know the old adage, "You can't yell 'Fire' in a crowded theater." But, do we know the legality behind it and, more importantly, are we teaching it? You see.. this is the responsibility part. It goes hand in hand with the rights part. We can't have one without the other. We want our kids to grow up to be independently thinking, mature adults that express themselves wisely. We can do this by teaching the whole picture, not just the one that agrees with us. After all, it isn't about me. It is about my students and their future.

    (For more of Kim Frencken's writing, check out her blog.)

    Nancy Hughes devotion: Putting gods before God

    (Nancy Hughes'  devotions, which have been featured on the Inside Joplin page in the past, are moving over to the Turner Report, as I begin occasionally adding other voices to the mix on this blog. For those who have missed Nancy's devotions in recent months, she has been recuperating from two arm surgeries and now is back in writing mode. You can find more of her writing on her new blog, Encouragement from the War Room. Please check it out.)


    A glance at the clock as I sat down and opened my Bible for much-needed moments with the Lord showed almost 8 am – more than enough time to dig in His Word before I met a friend for lunch. I looked at the curtains pulled across my door to the deck. “I’ll pull them open,” I thought. “Much nicer to see God’s creation during prayer time.”

    And the view was better . . . except for the hand prints on the glass door. Several sprays of Windex and swipes with paper towels cleaned up my view even more.

    As I turned to go back to my quiet time, I noticed the cob web. “Good grief! What if someone came to visit and saw that thing hanging down!” my mind winced.

    It didn’t take long to remove the offending web but it had friends in the corners of my living room so as long as I was getting rid of one, I decided to clean the rest of the room.

    I sat down and picked up my Bible and realized I didn’t have a pen or paper to take notes. As I scooped up a pad of paper on my computer desk, it occurred to me that I hadn’t wished my friends “happy birthday” on Facebook so I took just a few minutes to get that done.

    I found a pen in a drawer by the kitchen sink but I also noticed all the dirty dishes so I rinsed them and put them in the dishwasher.

    As I sat back down in my chair, I again glanced at the clock and was shocked to see that over two hours had passed since I first opened my Bible for prayer time!

    What was more important than a face to face, intimate conversation with God my Father? Clean glass doors and no cobwebs and a loaded dishwasher. I put household chores before the Creator of the Universe. God was not my first priority of the day. To be honest, He wasn’t my first priority at all.

    As I sat in silence, one of the Ten Commandments spoke to my heart. “You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3.

    Surely household chores or getting on Facebook aren’t gods? They are simply things that need to be done . . .right? Sure . . . unless. Unless I allow them to take first place in my life.

    Now, just to be clear, I know we all have those days when a daughter is throwing up, a son can’t find his shoe and the bus is coming, and the washer is broken – all BEFORE 8 am. And our only prayer is “Get me through the next five minutes, Lord!” Believe me, I get it.

    But if we are continually putting daily activities before the Lord, they have indeed become idols – in other words, gods – because they have taken His place of importance in our lives.

    May I encourage you to do a daily heart check? Are there any “gods” in your life that are moving up your priority list each day as your time with the Lord moves down?

    If so, decide today – this minute – to re-evaluate what holds first place in your life. If it’s your time with the Creator, fantastic! If it isn’t, see what you can change to make sure you are never putting gods before God.

    Lord, with all my heart I want You to have first place in my life. Please show me those things that I need to rearrange so I can spend time with You every day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

    R.A.P. it up
    Reflect

    · Look over your last few weeks of being in the Word and having prayer time with the Lord. How many times have you put activities before Him?

    Application
    · Before you go to bed, make a “to do” list for the next day. Rearrange activities to make time with the Lord a priority.

    Power Verses
    · Exodus 20:3 (NIV) “You shall have no other gods before me.”

    · Proverbs 3:6 (NIV) “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”

    · Matthew 6:33 (NIV) “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

    · Colossians 3:2 (NIV) “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”

    · Matthew 26:40 (NIV) “Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. ‘Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?’ he asked Peter.”

    FEMA documents: Joplin R-8 officials asked for $44K for planning work that was never done at Emerson Elementary

    In the Joplin R-8 School District, officials don't just want a penny for their thoughts but $44,389.54.

    What they got was less than a penny when FEMA turned down the heavy thinking that the officials put into a restoration of Emerson Elementary that never took place following the Joplin Tornado.

    Documents obtained by the Turner Report through an Open Meetings Law request show that on April 12, in a letter to R-8 CFO Paul Barr, FEMA rejected the request for $44,389.54 noting "applicant has provided a statement that 'Joplin Schools did not incur any actual costs for this project for permanent repairs to Emerson. Additional repairs needed to make the facility safe and secure were not completed."

    Still, even when the work is not done, costs are incurred for all of the work that goes into deciding what to do.

    The FEMA letter indicates the money was all designed to go to administrative costs, with $43,786.54 going to J. L. Witt and Associates, the consulting firm hired to help the district deal with its recovery. The other $1,002.78 was for the district.

    Among the other revelations in the documents, most of which have been noted in previous Turner Report posts, Joplin R-8:

    -Missed one FEMA deadline after another, some of them by as much as three years.

    -Asked for more federal taxpayers' money, but provided almost no documentation to support those requests.

    -Asked for money for damages that FEMA photos indicate were either overstated and/or non-existent.

    -Agreed to a limit of $155 an hour for some of those working on the project, but submitted requests far above that amount, up to as much as $430 an hour.

    -Violated FEMA regulations from the beginning by hiring a high-powered and high-dollar firm (Witt and Associates) to guide the district through the recovery process without putting the job up for bids.

    -Possibly violated the Sunshine Law during a December 2016 Board of Education meeting when the same firm was hired to help the district as it tried to deal with FEMA paperwork. Again, the firm was hired without taking bids.

    -Told FEMA the district's entire focus was on "rebuilding and reopening its educational facilities" and then they would focus on how much it cost.

    FEMA documents showed R-8 agreed to budget, then ignored it completely

    Waiting for FEMA; Joplin R-8 Board extends loan, plans for sharp dip in reserves

    FEMA documents: Joplin R-8 tornado recovery began with $3 million no-bid contract

    FEMA Joplin High School documents: Where the hell did the money go?




    Turner Report to State Auditor: Send City of Joplin audit evidence to Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney

    Nearly two years have passed since the results of a petition audit of the City of Joplin were announced by State Auditor Nicole Galloway at Missouri Southern State University.

    Though Galloway told the audience that evidence from the audit had been turned over to the Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney's office and law enforcement agencies, it does not appear that any action was ever taken.

    Former Prosecuting Attorney Dean Dankelson, now a judge, told the Joplin Globe last year he had never received anything from the state auditor.

    As difficult as I find that to believe, one thing cannot be denied- the Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney never took any initiative to
    look into the allegations from the audit.

    I have sent a letter to the state auditor's office asking that the information be sent to new Prosecuting Attorney Theresa Kenney:

    Saturday, June 24, 2017

    Sex offender charged with two felonies after crashing into Diamond Post Office during high speed chase

    An Iowa sex offender has been charged with two felonies in connection with a high speed chase that ended Friday morning when he crashed into the Diamond Post Office.

    Online Newton County Circuit Court records indicate Mason D. Vang, 21, Webster City, Iowa, has been charged with assault in the second degree with a special victim and resisting arrest by fleeing creating a substantial risk of injury or death. The assault charge came as a result of Vang ramming a Newton County deputy's vehicle.


    Newton County Sheriff Chris Jennings told KZRG that the chase began when a deputy tried to make a traffic stop at I-49 and V Highway. Vang turned on to Cortez Lane, a dead end. When the deputy got out of his car, Vang backed up and rammed the car.

    Vang's crash did structural damage to the Diamond Post Office, the adjacent Community Bank and Trust building, and the roadway. A fire hydrant was snapped off causing damage to the water main, according to the Diamond Fire Protection District's Facebook page.

    According to the Iowa Sex Offender registry, Vang was convicted two years ago of assault with intent to commit sexual abuse.

    Bond for Vang has been set at $25,000.

    (Accident photo from Diamond Area Fire Protection District Facebook page)

    Ten lawsuits alleging assault and battery, malpractice filed against former Joplin pediatric surgeon

    Ten lawsuits have been filed against a former Joplin pediatric surgeon alleging assault and battery and malpractice.

    The actions, which were filed in Albuquerque, New Mexico District Court, claim Dr. Guy Rosenschein, who left Joplin for New Mexico in 2013, allege Rosenschein used his access to his underage patients for his own sexual gratification.

    Presbyterian Healthcare Services, Albuquerque, is also listed as a defendant.

    Rosenschein told authorities that he is sexually attracted to underage males "on occasion." The doctor, who is being held without bond while he awaits trial in federal court on child pornography charges, has acknowledged participation in illegal activities prior to his time in Joplin and is charged with activities that took place after he left, but at this point there have been no allegations of any illegal behavior during his time in Missouri.

    Eight of the lawsuits were filed by the same law firm on behalf of "John Doe" or "Jane Doe" clients and claim that Rosenschein abused the patients and Presbyterian Health Care Services did nothing to prevent it. A petition to join the eight cases has been filed.

    Another case charges Rosenschein and the hospital with medical malpractice, while the 10th legal action is a personal injury lawsuit.

    The petition in the first lawsuit noted that law enforcement officers found photos of children taken in a medical setting, taken on the type of iPhone that did not exist before 2014 among Rosenschein's possessions, which would indicate the photos were taken at Presbyterian. Rosenschein also made a habit of asking parents to leave the room during examinations.

    According to the petition, "when he examined patients, he made inappropriate remarks about the size of children's genitals, which is further proof that he was viewing the children through the eyes of a pedophile, rather than as a physician."

    The petition also noted the child pornography that was found in his possession, the undressed teenage boy who was in his bed when law enforcement arrived to execute a search warrant at his home, and his admission to officers that he was attracted to younger boys.

    The four-count lawsuit alleged invasion or privacy, lack of informed consent, intentional infliction of emotional distress and charged the hospital with "negligent hiring, retention, supervising, and credentialing."
    From the petition:

    On or about November 7, 2016, a detective of the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office obtained a search warrant to search Dr. Rosenschein’s residence. Upon searching the residence, the detective found a 16-year-old boy in Dr. Rosenschein’s bed wearing nothing but his underwear. The boy was a former patient of Dr. Rosenschein’s. Detectives also found numerous electronic devices, some of which were encrypted and required further analysis. A thumb drive that was not encrypted contained approximately 1,100 images and 78 videos of child pornography. During an interview following the search of his residence, Dr. Rosenschein accepted responsibility for the thumb drive and admitted that he is sexually attracted to underage males. The data from the thumb drive containing the child pornography indicated that it was viewed as recently as May 2016.

    Following the execution of the first search warrant, federal law enforcement officers learned that there was a “secret room” inside Dr. Rosenchein’s residence. They obtained a second search warrant to search the home and found the secret room. During their search, the officers found five printed photographs depicting a minor male child who was approximately 11 to 15 years of age. Four of the photos depicted the child nude in the shower.

    In addition to the foregoing, law enforcement seized an iPhone 6 from Dr. Rosenchein’s residence. The forensic analysis of this phone revealed approximately one dozen photographs taken in a hospital or medical setting. Several of the photographs depict close up views of infant children’s genitalia. Other photographs depict the breasts of a child just entering puberty, which could be a male or female. The fact that the photographs were taken on an iPhone 6 (which was released for sale in September 2014) establishes that the children in the photographs were most likely Presbyterian patients.

    Other photographs and/or videos of infants and children have been taken and either have yet to be discovered or were destroyed. Indeed, given Dr. Rosenchein’s admitted sexual interest in underage children and his position at Presbyterian as a pediatric urologist and surgeon, it is most likely that there were many other photographs, videos, and similarly improper and illegal actions taken by Dr. Rosenchein while he was at Presbyterian.

    Because Dr. Rosenchein was a practicing pediatric urologist – a specialty in which Dr. Rosenchein is cloaked with authority to examine and touch children’s genitals – Dr. Rosenchein had frequent contact and exposure to his young patients’ genitals. Given his admitted attraction to underage males, and given that he took personal photographs of males and females in the hospital setting, it is believed and alleged that Rosenchein examined his young patients’ genitals for his personal gratification, rather than solely for medically appropriate reasons. A pedophile was given unfettered acces to the objects of his desire under the guise of being a trusted Presbyterian physician.

    Dr. Rosenchein abused his authority and his position of trust to the serious detriment of Class Members. When he examined patients, he made inappropriate remarks about the size of children’s genitals, which is further proof that he was viewing the children through the eyes of a pedophile, rather than as a physician.

    Dr. Rosenchein further abused this position of trust given the fact that upon his arrest, he was found with a 16-year-old former patient in his bed. According to a finding in the criminal case, Dr. Rosenchein “understands how to ‘groom’ children so that they trust him and will agree to spend time with him. And although both John Doe 1 and Dr. Rosenschein denied having a sexual relationship, the fact that his former patient was found in his bed in only his underwear suggests that the relationship was not entirely platonic.”

    Dr. Rosenchein is currently in federal custody facing charges of possession and distribution of child pornography. According to court records, “evidence in this case indicates that Dr. Rosenchein possessed more than one thousand images and videos of child pornography, many of which involve prepubescent minor males. Dr. Rosenchein kept these images literally at his fingertips – on a thumb drive attached to a key chain found in his vehicle.”

    In a decision denying release of Dr. Rosenchein, the court made the following finding:
    [Dr. Rosenchein’s] history suggests that he is a danger to children, and that he is willing to use his position as a pediatric surgeon to gain access to minors for purpose of engaging in inappropriate behavior. Dr. Rosenchein admitted that he sometimes is sexually attracted to underage males. . . . Dr. Rosenchein also had several photographs on his phone that depict close-up views of genitalia in what appear to be a medical or hospital setting.

    As the court stated, Dr. Rosenschein’s actions and history demonstrate “that the recent charges against him are not an aberration.”

    As a result of Defendants’ misconduct, Plaintiffs and all others similarly situated are left in utter dismay over the known fact that Presbyterian allowed a pedophile access to minors at its facility. They are further alarmed that Presbyterian, apparently, allowed Dr. Rosenchein to take illicit photographs of patients, to meet underage children that he attempted to groom for his own gratification, and to invade the privacy and innocence of pediatric patients when conducting examinations for his personal sexual gratification rather than solely for the treatment and diagnosis of medical conditions.

    As the United States Supreme Court held in Paoline v. United States, 134 S. Ct. 1710 (2014), the harm that child pornography inflicts on children is “devastating.” As a “consumer” of child pornography, Dr. Rosenchein “encourages others to sexually abuse young children to create pornography.”

    As cited by the United States Attorney in Dr. Rosenchein’s criminal case, several studies report that child pornography offenses are indicative of hands-on offenses. See The 'Butner Study' Redux: A Report of the Incidence of Hands-on Child Victimization by Child Pornography Offenders, Michael Bourke and Andres Hernandez, Journal of Family Violence, 2009 (child pornography offenders are “more likely than not” to have engaged in the hands-on abuse of a child); Child Pornography Offenses Are a Valid Diagnostic Indicator of Pedophilia, Seto, Cantor & Blanchard, 2006 (child pornography offending is a “stronger diagnostic indicator of pedophilia than is sexually offending against child victims.”). Here, the Class Members and Court are not left to simply speculate whether Dr. Rosenchein has or will engage in hands-on contact with minors; he admitted to previously having sexual contact with a minor overseas. Furthermore, the very position that Presbyterian bestowed on Dr. Rosenchein gave him hands-on contact with minors’ genitalia on an almost daily basis.

    On information and belief, because Dr. Rosenschein was brazen enough to take at least a dozen photographs at Presbyterian’s facilities, it is certainly likely that he engaged in other inappropriate and illegal acts at those facilities during his tenure as a Presbyterian physician and employee.

    Dr. Rosenschein was performing examinations and providing medical care and treatment to minor children with ulterior motives in mind and was viewing the children entrusted to him as sexual objects, rather than as patients. Such actions by Dr. Rosenchein breached the trust that Defendants promised all pediatric patients to provide them with care in a safe environment that was free from all forms of abuse, neglect, and harassment and that preserved their dignity.

    Presbyterian fired Dr. Rosenschein approximately one day after he was taken into federal custody. Dr. Rosenschein also lost his hospital privileges as well as his medical license.

    Presbyterian engaged in a quick effort to spin the story in its favor. Days after Dr. Rosenchein’s arrest, and without full knowledge and investigation of the facts and circumstances involving Dr. Rosenchein’s predatory activities, Presbyterian gave interviews and sent letters to patients and parents assuring them Dr. Rosenchein was not engaged in inappropriate conduct at Presbyterian.

    To the contrary, Presbyterian policy prohibits taking photographs of patients on a personal cellular telephone. Yet, it failed to enforce its policy. Additionally, no legitimate basis exists to claim that pictures of boys’ and girls’ genitalia and a child’s exposed chest on the personal iPhone of an admitted pedophile is “clinically appropriate”. The iPhone 6 was released in 2014 – between 2014 and his arrest in 2016, Dr. Rosenchein was a Presbyterian doctor who saw patients at Presbyterian facilities. The photographs were most likely taken at a Presbyterian facility and are most likely Presbyterian patients.

    For Dr. Rosenchein’s patients, the hollow assurance that nothing inappropriate happened at Presbyterian is simply a cover-up by a corporation that allowed a pedophile access to the most vulnerable members of the community.

    No court date has been set for Rosenschein on the federal charges.

    Billy Long: Trump budget calls for investing in water delivery systems

    (From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

    The U.S. has over one million miles of pipes that carry the country’s water supply. However, many of those pipes are aging and becoming out-of-date. With water impacting every American’s life, investing in our nation’s water delivery systems is crucial. The need to invest in water delivery systems over the years has only increased and is a more pressing issue. The problem is not just aging pipes. The sources of the drinking water are also becoming out-of-date, which include depleted aquifers and inadequate storage. As land and population distribution continue to change, new demands emerge.

    The U.S. has faced these issues for decades. As water systems age and little investment is made into water delivery systems, the country is paying a costly price. Over the next 10 years, the U.S. will need to invest $123 billion per year to ensure that the water systems throughout the country are up-to-date.

    The problem with Missouri’s drinking water infrastructure isn’t just a lack of access to water, but also the systems that are used to deliver the water. Though a majority of Missourians receive safe drinking water, there is still a portion of the population that does not live in an area that meets the minimum water quality standards established by the Environmental Protection Agency. Over 300,000 people in Missouri live in communities that have outdated water systems.

    One important program to help states update their water infrastructure is the Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund (DWSRF), which serves as a federal-state financial assistance program in which states receive federal grants and contribute an additional 20% in matching funds. The DWSRF acts as an infrastructure bank to provide low interest loans for drinking water infrastructure projects. As recipients pay back the loans into the state’s revolving loan fund, the state makes new loans to other recipients. Through 2016, state revolving loan funds have provided more than $30 billion for water infrastructure projects.

    President Trump recognizes the importance of this program for infrastructure projects, and his budget proposal calls for increasing federal funds for this program. More funding for this program will greatly benefit states like Missouri to help update its water delivery systems. As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I look forward to working with President Trump to address these pressing issues.

    Friday, June 23, 2017

    Speaker of the House: We're even tougher on abortion than the Senate

    (From Speaker of the House Todd Richardson)

    The members of the Missouri House worked this week to amend and strengthen a piece of legislation sent over from the Senate to better ensure the health and safety of women by putting common sense safety requirements in place for abortion clinics.

    The Governor called the legislature into a special session to enact the stronger safety regulations after a court ruling that struck down Missouri’s previous law requiring abortion providers abide by the same regulations as ambulatory surgery centers. The court also did away with a law that required a doctor providing an abortion to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.

    Senate Bill 5, handled in the House by Rep. Diane Franklin, makes many changes to current state law to address the issues created by court rulings. The bill allows the Department of Health and Senior Services to adopt rules governing complication plans to ensure patients undergoing abortions induced by drugs or chemicals have access to safe and reliable care. Abortion facilities would be required to provide affirmative evidence that each person authorized to perform abortions is a physician currently licensed to practice in Missouri. The health department will also be permitted to make unannounced on-site inspection of any abortion facility annually. Senate Bill 5 also requires that all tissue removed at the time of abortion be sent to a pathologist with seventy-two hours for examination.

    While the version of Senate Bill 5 sent to the House provided a framework, the House wanted to strengthen the legislation even further. One of the provisions included by the House would prevent abortion clinic staff from requiring emergency responders to alter their normal response procedure by turning off lights or sirens. A second provision allows the attorney general to prosecute violations of state abortion laws with no obligation to wait on local prosecutors. Penalties for abortion clinics that do not comply with the requirements for submitting fetal tissue after an abortion were also strengthened by the House.

    Components of Senate Bill 5 were also designed to address a city ordinance that has turned St. Louis into an abortion sanctuary city. The bill passed by the House protects the right of an "alternatives to abortion" agency to operate freely and engage in speech without governmental interference, and the right of a person not to be compelled by the government to participate in abortion contrary to his or her religious beliefs or moral convictions. In effect, the bill would pre-empt the St. Louis ordinance.

    Senate Bill 5 now moves back to the Senate for further consideration.