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RECORDING. Year-end figures from the Greene County Recorder of Deeds Office reveal more than legal instruments related to real estate (see the story on page 13). Linda Montgomery's office in 1998 collected $1.95 million in fees and other revenues stipulated by law, a record amount. The money was distributed as follows: $931,810.75 to Greene County general revenue; $471,714 to County Employees Retirement Fund; $208,089 to Missouri Housing Trust; $142,894 to the state user fee fund; $142,894 to recorder's user fee fund; $31,386 to the Children's Trust Fund; and $20,840 to the Domestic Violence Shelter Fund. There were 2,084 marriage licenses issued in Greene County last year, down 1.9 percent from the 2,125 issued in 1997.

LESS FOR MILEAGE. Heads up, the standard mileage rate ordained by the Internal Revenue Service is heading down. From April 1 the rate will be 31 cents for the standard business rate, down from the previous 32 1/2-cent rate. The IRS said lower gasoline prices and the longer useful life of vehicles are behind the reduction. The rate goes into effect April 1, as opposed to the usual Jan. 1, to allow businesses and individuals time to adjust to the change. It's the first time the IRS has ever reduced the mileage rate.

MILLENNIUM OF CHAMPS. L. Don Brown is the speaker for the Feb. 4 Breakfast with Champions at University Plaza. Brown is senior vice president of operations and technology for Coors Brewing Company. He will speak on the topic "Leadership requirements for an effective organization in the new millennium." In addition to SMSU, Brown attended the Advanced School of management at Harvard University School of Business, and the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business. Tickets for the 7:30 a.m. event are $15. Brown's appearance is presented by the SMSU College of Business Administration and co-sponsored by the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce as well as the SBJ.

DILBERT WATCH. It seems our friend Dilbert (the Business Journal runs his daily strip) has made the leap to television. Get out your over-the-air broadcast antenna and tune in "Dilbert" the TV show on the Ozark Television Network, the local United Paramount Network affiliate. It's on Channel 15 in these parts. Daniel Stern plays the voice of the engineer. Other voices for the animated series are provided by Chris Elliot (who plays Dogbert), Larry Miller, Kathy Griffin and Gordon Hunt. The show, which had its premier Jan. 25, airs at 7 p.m. Mondays.

PARTS IS NOT PARTS. The Missouri Department of Revenue has ruled that manufacturers no longer must pay sales or use tax on replacement parts for manufacturing machinery or equipment. That outcome was delayed from Aug. 28, 1998, when legislation was enacted to exempt application of taxes for those items. The Department of Revenue issued its ruling letter Jan. 21. Those who have paid the tax since Aug. 28 but who fit the exemption may apply for refunds, according to a release from the Missouri Chamber of Commerce.

METROCOM SALE. Metrocom, the answering service division presence in Springfield for Wichita-based First Page, was sold to Connect Plus LLC. Connect Plus also bought Ansercom in Wichita as part of the purchase from First Page. Connect Plus provides telephone answering, order processing, billing, payroll and database management to clients in Kansas and Missouri. The company also has offices in Kansas City, Kan.

CAN WE TALK? Springfield Underground Inc. requested Jan. 26 that its zoning case on Planned Development 229, originally slated for public hearing Jan. 28, be tabled until the meeting of Feb. 11, according to a city news release. In response to concerns from nearby property owners, Springfield Underground will meet with neighbors for discussion before presenting it to Planning and Zoning.

SLICE OF NICE. Booth space is available for restaurants and other food vendors at the second annual Taste of Springfield, an event that samples appetizers, entrees and desserts from more than 30 local food vendors. This year's event is March 20 at the University Plaza Trade Center. Proceeds benefit the Children's Miracle Network. The event begins at 11 a.m. and ends at 2 p.m.. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children. For more information on reserving a booth, call 269-3004.

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